Sunday, March 22, 2009

my bracket's got a hole in it

same song, different year (though I did manage to win a valuable prize (and not just the home version) for my women's bracket last season).

the women's tournament has already seen more upsets in the first day than I predicted for the entire first round. and those surprises did not include Georgia defending their home (actually, Duluth, GA) against Arizona State.
Xavier's loss to Gonzaga was particularly painful.

and on the men's side, Duke refused to lose to Texas (though it certainly could've gone the other way) and, most damaging, Ohio State, with better talent, experience and a home court advantage, couldn't put away Siena.
I knew Siena was good and I knew that Ohio State wasn't great, but damn . . .
that was about the ugliest college basketball game I've seen in months.
as in, if I thought there was any chance (any chance at all) that a tournament game could be fixed, Siena-Ohio State would be my primary suspect.
for five of the last six minutes it looked like neither team wanted to win (though Ohio State, again with more talent, did a more convincing job of making stupid mistakes).
if there is a silver lining in this particular bracket cloud (see, I didn't have Louisville making the Final Four and now there's no team left that has even a remote chance of taking them out other than Michigan State or Kansas in the round of eight, and I don't believe that's going to happen) it's only that now I'm safe from having to watch Ohio State play again for at least another seven months.

and just to prove that something else hit the television set over the past 72 hours:
Changeling needed another editor.
not necessarily for length (though it felt long), but for scene balance (the tidy summation on behalf of "hope" at the end is but one of many examples).
characterization (or you can call it writing if you'd like) is also off. the good guys are good (really good) and the bad guys are, well, really, really bad.
John Malkovich was excellent as usual, but the child acting (and there were several child actors) was uneven at best, and I didn't see Angelina Jolie's acting as nomination worthy (though of course they do like to pick at least five finalists, and maybe there's a rule that automatically kicks in a nod if you appear in at least 95% of a film's scenes).
as in, you can lead a long and happy life (yeah, good luck with that) without giving up the two plus hours better spent watching basketball.

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