Maybe, This Christmas (Christmas 2016)

It’s been quite the year for me, dear readers.

As I reflect back on what has been accomplished this year at timotheories, I’m proud of all the new theories we’ve been able to bring to you, the friendships strengthened through opportunities of collaboration whether in monthly interviews, Cross Talk film discussion or the much anticipated Just ‘n Time Games (I swear it’s coming), and of course so much curating I can’t even believe it.

2017 looks to be even brighter, and as I personally wind down for a week of reflection, timed perfectly with the Christmas season, I can’t help but be inspired by the holidays friends.

Normally, I like to tell people that I’m not a large fan of Christmas, after all, it is a lot of effort for very little physical pay-off. But upon the start of my reflection, the mistake I make in writing and believing that, is that Christmas really is a SEASON of giving and goodwill, and I believe that most of us use this time to set aside our desires for recognition to share ourselves and provide something special to those we care about.

With that in mind, I’ve rewritten some Christmas lyrics into a little poem, capturing the intent of this realization for me. I can thank my girlfriend Mysticque for a lot of this inspiration, because she is a dedicated and giving individual, perhaps a bit sentimental too, which I use in a positive light as a robot coming off of his programming.

So this one is for you baby.

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, all is calm. All is bright.

I don’t want a lot this Christmas. Just, like, the ones I used to know… You will get a sentimental feeling when you hear, voices singing “And so this is Christmas, I hope you have fun. The near and the dear ones, the old and the young.” Way up in the sky, little lamb, do you see what I see? A star, a star, dancing in the night. O holy night! The stars are brightly shining.

Do they know it’s Christmastime at all?

Please have snow and mistletoe. And presents by the tree… Won’t be the same dear, if you’re not here with me.Oh, there’ll be no more sorrow, no grief and pain. and I’ll be happy, Christmas once again. This year, to save me from tears, I’ll give it to someone special.

I really do believe in you, let’s see if you believe in me. And if you ever saw it, you would even say it glows.

With that shared, timotheories always has been and always will be digital curating at heart, and you can’t have heart without art, creative cuties. I ask you to take some time, whether Christmas inspired or not, to reflect on your own year, consider what you’ve achieved, and set the bar a little higher for yourselves, never measuring against others, but against you, because you CAN achieve your dreams, and Christmas is a great reminder of why sharing with others is vital.

Happy holidays and I’ll see you in the new year, with a new plan, some new theories, and lots of he(art).


Looking To Establish Character (Goodwill)

The first time I heard someone refer to another person as the “genuine article” or the “real article”, I didn’t really get it, dear readers.
I thought all people were real. After all, we are all standing there visible to the world around us. Admittedly, I was probably 9 or 10 years old.
That cultural idiom is there for a reason though, because it’s easy to substitute in behaviour in order to gain something from other(s). And that is the challenge – genuine good will is a difficult thing to accomplish. Anyone can donate their things away and be perceived as generous, but if we stop to consider what’s going on behind the scenes, in the mind of the donating party,  the only one who really knows if they are donating something with the intention of benevolence, kindness or from a place of friendliness is the gift giver.

Del Griffith’s Speech

Now I want to tie this in with an example. There is this great scene from the movie Planes, Trains, & Automobiles that perfectly encapsulates my point. It’s the one where John Candy gives the infamous John Hughes type speech – it is brilliant, emotional, and timeless in it’s delivery.
We could very easily read that scene from the perspective that Del Griffith is a moralistic character we should aspire to be like, especially after we know the twist of the film, and sit down for a second viewing. But consider this for a minute creative cuties, what if John Candy really was manipulating Steve Martin’s character into doing the right thing by using emotions to transform their relationship into one of interdependence? Maybe it was intentional maybe it wasn’t, but the guy is lonely and is seeking affirmation that his decisions are well founded and that his life has meaning.
Now this variation of the narrative is played to great effect in a parody scene that Family Guy did years later.

Empathy and Goodwill

Sometimes we enact a process of goodwill to develop our own moral compass – Investing personal meaning that it is important to do charitable works in order to feel good and to contribute to society proper. This of course is also not a guaranteed act of genuine good will, but it is on the right track towards selfless behaviour of a pure intent.
In business, gaining a reputation of goodwill is sometimes just as important to customers as the valuation of it’s goods and/or services. An intangible asset that contributes to the brand in a positive way. When we take this idea into the realm of the arts, and the salable component of art making, we can see how artists might craft their art to make themselves appear more vivacious, charitable, intelligent, rebellious, funny, dangerous or any combination of traits that help demonstrate the value and intent of the work. I’ve written about this before, but by viewing the artist as an individual comes the risk that we don’t like what that artist says and does, but we enjoy their work for personal reasons.

My theory is this, if you make art for the purpose of self development and pleasure FIRST, and then add in a layer of consciousness next, altruistic behaviour naturally evolves out of it.

In a very generalized way, the philosopher Aristotle probably said it best, your ethos or character is established through a number of factors – your level of goodwill, trustworthiness, authority on topic(s), similarity to others, and resonating communication abilities. One of the most powerful ways to demonstrate goodwill is through is through empathy. To relate to others by aligning with them demonstrates your understanding of them and it makes way for your message to be received in a strong light.
In the holiday season, it can be very easy to get lost in the state of affairs. Wanting to do good without understanding what it means to be good. When you make your art, live your life, share your purpose with the intent of empathy, no matter what your passion is, people are more likely to tune into your message, and you will connect with them in a positive way. This is important and essential in a world where many don’t relate to those around them.
But that is just a theory – my last wisdom based theory of the year in fact. Luckily, I’ve got one more post to share tomorrow.

Now I Have A Machine Gun, Ho Ho Ho (Die Hard review)

What is a die hard anyway? Common knowledge states that it’s someone who stubbornly resists change or uses tenacity to stick to a seemingly hopeless cause.

In a special Theatrical Tuesday review, I look at a movie that is truly die hard, and almost twenty five years later, is still considered to be an achievement in genre film. I think you’ll enjoy this one folks.




Die Hard (1988)

Cast: Bruce Willis, Bonnie Bedelia, Reginald VelJohnson, Paul Gleason, William Atherton, Hart Bochner, Alan Rickman, James Shigeta
Director: John McTiernan
released on blu-ray November 20, 2007
********** 10/10


IMDB: 8.2
Rotten Tomatoes: 92%, Audience Score 94%
The Guardian: *****/*****

John McTiernan is an American filmmaker. He is best known for a trio of action films he directed between 1987 to 1990 – Predator, Die Hard, and The Hunt for Red October.

Though to be clear, Predator was not his directorial debut, in 1986, he did write and direct his first feature film, Nomads, starring Pierce Brosnan, also effectively starting Brosnan’s career with his own first lead role in a film. While Nomads was neither commercially successful nor critically acclaimed, it did land McTiernan the job of directing science fiction action hit Predator, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Then coming hot off the success of Predator, which was second only to Beverly Hills Cop II for domestic box office in 1987, McTiernan was given an even larger budget and managed to improve his results with Die Hard. This movie has been given generally favourable reviews throughout the years and still trends in top 10 Christmas movie lists almost twenty-five years later.

It is my favourite Christmas movie that doesn’t focus primarily on Christmas – Let’s go over the plot quick.

On Christmas Eve, NYPD Detective John McClane (Bruce Willis) lands in LA to visit estranged wife Holly (Bonnie Bedelia) at her company Christmas party. McClane is driven to the party by an airport limousine driver, who waits for him in the basement. While McClane changes clothes, the party is overrun by German terrorist Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman) and team. McClane manages to skip out while the rest of the party are taken as hostages.

Gruber takes the head executive Joseph Takagi (James Shigeta), and interrogates Takagi for the vault codes to reveals that his real plan is to steal $640 million in bearer bonds. Takagi refuses to cooperate and is murdered by Gruber. McClane, who had been secretly watching, accidentally gives himself away and is pursued by the terrorists throughout the building, slowly eliminating terrorists and gaining resources, eventually getting a radio and contacting the LAPD. Patrol officer Al Powell (Reginald VelJohnson). Powell helps him from the outside, calling in the FBI.

The terrorists want the FBI shut off the building power, so that the final lock of the vault will be disabled, and they can steal the bonds. Gruber asks for a helicopter to escape, but intends to fake the teams death, simultaneously killing all of the hostages, and providing them with a distraction to leave through the basement via an “ambulance” they brought.

Shortly after, Gruber sees a news report from reporter Richard Thornburg (William Atherton) and realizes that McClane is Holly’s husband. Gruber and team send the hostages to the roof with the explosives, holding Holly as leverage, but McClane is able to get out of the situation and send the hostages back downstairs before the roof blows. The criminals head for the garage, but as McClane goes to cut them off, Gruber threatens Holly and forces his hand. With some luck, McClane is able to trick Gruber and henchman, revealing a pistol taped to his back. He shoots Gruber in the shoulder, and kills the other guy. Gruber crashes through a window,eventually falling to his death.

The movie ends with Thornburg getting punched out by Holly, and McClane and Holly leaving with limo driver Argyle.

This movie really is a textbook example of what an action/crime film should be. The plot is clear, with the setting and characters being believable. We always root for John McClane because he is the every man, at risk consistently throughout the film, though lucky and funny enough to realize he is in over his head. It is easy to sit through because the weight of the supporting cast allows us to root for McClane and Holly as they work to get out of this surreal situation.

Pros: From cokehead deal maker Ellis, to down on his luck beat cop Al Powell, the characters in this story are interesting and all work together to make a believable narrative for John McClane to fight his way through a team of criminals that are more than they appear to be. The one-liners are definitive and the action is fun to watch.

Cons: You will realize rather quickly that this is pulling on all of the right chords to get you hyped up for the story and then regret how easily you were manipulated into the plot. Paul Gleason plays the deputy chief who questions if McClane really is a cop, and he is incredibly frustrating to watch.

Runtime:  2 hours 11 minutes

Points of InterestIronically, Bruce Willis was born in Germany, while Alan Rickman was English and most of his henchman were from other other parts of Europe. The Nakatomi tower is in fact the real head offices of 20th Century Fox, and the company charged itself rent to use the then-unfinished building while filming.

Die Hard is iconic. That much is true. But the real reason why people enjoy it, is not because of some surface level interest, it’s because it represents a style of filmmaking that sometimes gets lost in a franchise, suspense and awe. It provides us with intelligence from all of it’s characters – we see minority groups and women being represented in a positive light. It’s an amazing achievement.

McClane is beaten up, shot at, wounded (both in the shoulder and his shredded bare feet) but he continuously comes back, a fly in the ointment, a monkey in the wrench, a pain in the ass. He refuses to give up, and he’s hard to kill. But on top of that, this film improves and impresses with every scene, its enlisted several die hards in its own time, proving that it’s a pinnacle in action and crime cinema. It’s my favourite Christmas movie.

I hope you enjoyed this review friends. I’ve about spent my theories on film this year, but fortunately for you, I still have some wisdom and a timely event to share this week. So come back tomorrow and share this article if it meant something to you.


But The Fire Is So Delightful (Michael Bublé, Christmas review)

In my family it’s pretty common to listen to the same three or four Christmas albums over and over and over again. Bing Crosby’s Merry Christmas, Burl Ives Have A Holly Jolly Christmas, Christmas with The Chipmunks featuring Alvin and the Chipmunks, and Christmas with Boney M.

It’s like clockwork. But every so often, my parents slip and let one of us take the helm, and that’s when I get to put on my favourite Christmas album.

Michael Bublé – Christmas
released October 24, 2011
******** 8/10


Michael Bublé is a Canadian well known for his abilities as singer, songwriter, actor and record producer. In fact, he has won several awards and honours, multiple Juno Awards, and four Grammy Awards.

His first album BaBalu charted the top ten in both Canada and the UK, but it wasn’t until his fourth album, It’s Time, that Bublé found a worldwide audience. Then his 2007 album Call Me Irresponsible did even betters – it was able to reach number one in Canada, the UK, the US Billboard 200, Australia and several European charts.

Bublé’s 2009 album Crazy Love debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200 after just three days of sales… It was also his fourth number one album on Billboard’s Top Jazz Albums chart. But His 2011 holiday album, Christmas, did the best yet as it was in first place on the Billboard 200 for the final four weeks of 2011 and then for first week of 2012, totalling five weeks atop the chart.

Christmas is a big deal for Bublé, and no I’m not talking about the holiday, I’m referring to the album. In fact, I’d say his album is a big deal to a lot of people. It was the first holiday album to win a Juno award for album of the year.

I was reading reviews of the top holiday albums ever and Michael Bublé really is in good company with this record. You often see artists like Bing Crosby, Nat King Cole, Elvis, Alvin and the Chipmunks, Mariah Carey, and The Beach Boys on those kinds of lists, but there is something special about this Canadian crooner that allows him to fit right in with both the old and the new Christmas jams. He does a great job reimagining Carey’s All I Want For Christmas Is You, has some fun on his duet with the Puppini Sisters for Jingle Bells, and really gets into the big band mode with It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas.

Silent Night is hauntingly beautfiul and simple in it’s delivery, and the gender twist on Santa Baby is pretty cute, sparking a few laughs from me each time I listen to it. Also the duet with Shania Twain on White Christmas is something special for fans of both artists.

If you like Michael Bublé this album will suit you just fine. If you like classic Christmas music, this album will suit you fine too. If you don’t typically like either Michael Bublé or Christmas music, then I caution you to avoid this, because it’s a lot of fun and maybe you don’t like fun, so why are you even reading this post in the first place.




This is hands down my favourite holiday themed album, and there are some excellent ones out there to be sure. Why I enjoy this over other is because it offers an excellent mix of old and new, and it’s length is perfect for unwrapping presents, take a short trip out of town to visit the in-laws or while you are lounging with brandy and wine after Christmas dinner. This really will get you in the holiday spirit friends, and I hope you have a holly, jolly Christmas. This is my last album review of the year, check back on January 2nd for something new. And come back tomorrow for my favourite Christmas movie, reviewed just for you!


Learning To Keep Pace (Cross Talk Ep. 14)

Christmas drives me absolutely nuts dear readers. I have to run around at a breakneck pace in order to keep up with all of the events, people, and deadlines. And that doesn’t even factor in my day job or running timotheories dot com. Now to be fair, I’m not telling you this to ask for sympathy, because the fact of the matter is that we are all running around like idiots.

It’s the nature of the beast. Every year Christmas gets bigger and bigger, We want to tap into that nostalgia, fuel the fire of Christmas cheer, and be even more generous with our giving. It’s enough to make you sick. In fact, I bet dollars to doughnuts, that a large number of us are going to get sick just as the madness settles down and we are able to enjoy the day.

It’s Murphy’s Law. Anything that can happen will happen. But what if there is a happy medium my friends?

What if you don’t have to be the tortoise or the hare? What if I were to tell you that pacing does matter and that you can achieve it? Well you’d probably tell me that I’m nuts.

Tortoise and hare

But here’s the thing, when it comes to art, we all know that old adage, about it imitating life, and the best films have incredibly tight pacing, no matter who you ask.

In case you don’t know what pacing means in film, I’m going to share a little quote with you from Wikipedia;

All time arts – music, dance, drama, film – are enormously concerned with pacing – with rhythm or tempo. As the film director translates events in a script into actions that make up scenes and sequences, that is, as the director shapes the actors’ performances and stages the other actions in front of the camera, one of his paramount concerns is pacing, making the action swell, subside, and swell again. The director does this to keep the scene from losing its energy and intensity. Later, after the shooting is over, the director, working with the film editor, will further control, construct, and perfect the pacing in the way he builds shots into scenes and sequences.

In order for life to flow properly, there needs to be proper transitions and rates of change. When you run a mile a minute for a month straight, life is gonna course correct you in turn. HARD.

This is probably one of my favourite topics when it comes to film; Chris and I are stoked to talk about it, and you can really see the passion between us flair up quick when we discuss the importance of pacing in a film. Both Andre and Singh backed out of this one, because they couldn’t handle the heat. It should be a good one. timotheories presents episode fourteen of Cross Talk.

And now I’m theoried out for the year my creative cuties. Check back over the next four days for a couple of Christmas themed movie and music reviews, some wisdom on the season, and a convenient update. Otherwise, please comment, subscribe, and share this video with friends. We want to hear your feedback!