Movies Watched -- Eastern Promises (2007)

Added on by C. Maoxian.

100 minute running time, so the perfect length. The second in my Naomi Watts series of movies. This one wasn’t terrible like The International, but it also wasn’t very good — it’s slickly made but the story is kind of lame. Stars Aragorn, Son of Arathorn, who plays a Russian mobster (with a twist, no spoilers). It’s based in London so Naomi gets to work on her British accent, and Aragorn speaks Russian at length, I wonder how well?

There’s one great fight scene in a bathhouse which Aragorn does completely nude. There’s always been a double standard when it comes to full frontal nudity in the movies, so I was glad to see Aragorn willing to put his uncircumcised dingle-dangle on display. The guy who plays Kirill, the main mobster’s son — an old guy with bright blue eyes, really eats up the role. It’s a pity that the lack of long winters in London has turned him into a homosexual. Orphan baby rides off into the night on an old Ural (without sidecar). Yellow rating.

Peter Bradshaw said it was “clunky and inauthentic,” and Tony Lane asks “Must [Cronenberg] cling to his schlocky reputation at all costs?“

Goodbye, Anna Ivanovna

Goodbye, Anna Ivanovna


Movies Watched -- The International (2009)

Added on by C. Maoxian.

119 minute running time so at least 20 to 30 minutes too long. I’m on a Naomi Watts kick, trying to watch every movie she has ever been in, which may be a mistake. I think she’s super talented and she looks just like the Australian version of one of my closest Chinese girlfriends from back in the day.

This movie was terrible. Clive Owen can’t act, but he has the designer stubble, cleft chin, and deep brown puppy dog eyes that got him some work for a time. Dumb story, badly written. No one is interested in criminal banks, even if they are led by Kai Proctor (god, I loved Banshee). One interesting thing they did was build a Guggenheim Museum set and shoot it up, but this was so idiotic, so incoherent, so pointless. Poor Naomi having to take roles like this with embarrassing expository dialogue. Lots of drone shots of fabulous locales, but just lousy, not thrilling, not interesting … a total waste of time. Red rating, avoid.

Edelstein called it a “slow road to nowhere,” and Rex (sorry, no link) said it “makes no sense at all.”

Teary on demand

Teary on demand


Office Art

Added on by C. Maoxian.

I had the classic Al Ross cartoon (from December 1981) framed for my spare bedroom, er, home office. The framer did a great job with it.

IMG_2881.jpg

Stabilizing Transactions

Added on by C. Maoxian.

From The IPO Decision by Jason Draho:

“Short covering: The underwriter can take an initial short position in the stock by overselling the IPO. Short covering in the open market creates additional demand that supports the price when there is selling pressure. The short position can alternatively be covered by exercising the overallotment option (OAO). An OAO is a standard feature of IPOs and it grants the underwriter the option to purchase additional shares from the issuer and resell them to investors at the offer price. The typical OAO is for 15 percent of the offer size and is exercisable for up to 30 calendar days after the offer date. The underwriter can completely hedge the upside risk if the short position does not exceed the size of the OAO, yet still maintain buying power to support the price when there is a sell imbalance.

Share repurchases by the underwriter in the open market are referred to as syndicate covering transactions and are subject to the same Regulation M disclosure requirements as penalty bids. In practice, investors are not informed that a particular trade is a short-covering transaction. The underwriter only has to include a statement in the prospectus indicating that it may engage in stabilizing transactions in conjunction with the offering of securities.”

And the same is true for every following offering of securities, although “Stabilizing is prohibited in an at-the-market offering.“

Movies Watched -- Green Book (2018)

Added on by C. Maoxian.

129 minute running time which means it was at least 30 minutes too long … I would cut out the punching the cop scene / Bobby Kennedy phone call and the YMCA rescue scene, since they were both no doubt fictionalized to give the movie a little more drama, but frankly it didn’t need it and moviemakers should always be looking to cut cut cut.

Stars Aragorn, son of Arathorn (who has put on 50 pounds in around 15 years), and Remy Danton, acting ever effete … never forget that Jimmy Breslin called Mayor Dinkins "a fancy shvartzer with a mustache."

This wasn’t badly made, but it was pretty heavy-handed (Barry Hertz called it “Racism for Dummies,” which made me laugh) and also didn’t spare the heartstring music, which annoyed me. Nice to see Linda Cardellini get some movie work (I loved her in Bloodline … well, I loved everything about Bloodline). The Negro Motorist Green Book itself does interest me, it was more than the black AAA guide, it was a directory to all the service providers who didn’t discriminate based on skin color, put together by a black postman and his network of other black postmen. That’s fascinating.

Solid yellow rating for sure but doesn’t get the coveted green go.

Dick Brody hated it and called it a “bland, regressive flip on ‘Driving Miss Daisy,’” which may seem overly harsh, but I see what he’s saying and largely agree with him.

Christ, I’m blacker than you are!

Christ, I’m blacker than you are!

Movies Watched -- Siberia (2018)

Added on by C. Maoxian.

97 minute running time, which is a good length, but this was a terrible, terrible movie. I got it out of a Red Box on a lark, and regret it. A Rotten Tomatoes score of 11% (which I learned after the fact) is generous.

An idiotic non-story, badly written. Multiple gratuitous sex scenes, completely unrealistic for a 51-year-old guy (even if he is fit), except for when he was performing Keanulingus. His Russian (actually Romanian) lover was sort of different because she had buck teeth and weird bones — I liked that.

Keanu still can’t act, everyone knows this, including Keanu, but he looks good with his stubble and no eyelashes (1/4 Chinese after all), and thankfully doesn’t open his mouth much, except to perform Keanulingus.

Blue diamonds, private jets, jacked-up Range Rovers, comical Russian gangsters … these are things that might appeal to a certain kind of teenage boy, but even he would throw up his hands about this one.

It’s a complete mystery to me how movies like this get made. Who funds them? Taxpayers in Manitoba? God almighty.

Rex hated it (“direction looks phoned in from a toll booth in the Ukraine … the screenplay is incomprehensible”) along with everyone else.

Burn the house down (with the movie producers trapped inside)

Burn the house down (with the movie producers trapped inside)

Movies Watched -- Battle of the Sexes (2017)

Added on by C. Maoxian.

121 minute running time so at least 20 to 30 minutes too long. I didn’t hate this one. The story of the World Tennis Association is interesting, though they whitewashed Bille Jean’s relationship with Marilyn (which ended badly). The girl who plays Billie Jean King is much more attractive than Billie Jean ever was, and Steve Carell is good as Mike Myers playing degenerate gambler Bobby Riggs. Good production values, slickly made. Also works in some pro-homosexual propaganda, as Hollywood likes to do these days. Not a green rating since it’s overly long, but a solid yellow for sure.

My favorite old fag and brilliant movie critic, Rex Reed, predictably loved it.

Dorky 70s Eyeglasses

Dorky 70s Eyeglasses

Movies Watched -- The Disaster Artist (2017)

Added on by C. Maoxian.

103 minute running time, which is a good length, but I found it sort of unbearable and watched it at 1.5x. Tells the story of a brain-damaged guy named Tommy Wiseau who, along with his friend Mark, made a movie called The Room, which is apparently so terrible that it became a cult classic — I’d never heard of it. It’s a sad story, an awful story really about this deranged guy and his efforts to write, direct, and star in a movie. Maybe Tommy got the money from a medical malpractice lawsuit? He spent $6 million apparently, and the people who helped make the movie were happy to take it, the lowlifes. Red rating, avoid.

Dick Brody also wasn’t thrilled.

I feel you.

I feel you.

Trading Wisdom

Added on by C. Maoxian.

You have to figure out if you’re trading to win or trading not to lose. You need to trade to win. A bird in the hand is not worth two in the bush. You don’t have an edge. Every trade is a coin flip. Your only edge is trade management: cutting losses short and letting winners run. Don’t double down. “… quite a few participants felt that some sort of doubling down, or Martingale betting strategy, was optimal, wherein the gambler increases the size of his wagers after losses “ Keep your bet size consistent and in line with your bankroll. You have to be able to lose and lose and lose and lose and lose and keep your bet size consistent. You want to bet bigger to “make it back,” and you want to get revenge, that’s only human nature. Recognize the urge and resist it. Hide your P&L to conceal both your losses (which are known, but cumulative) and gains (which are unknown).

When I was a kid I worked as a photocopy boy in an H&R Block office. They offered something to customers called the “Rapid Refund,” which was a high interest loan on a tax refund. People would pay the $20, $30 whatever fee to get their $100 tax refund a month earlier than normal. This struck me and the lesson it taught is forever in my mind as I trade.

(I’ll add more when inspired.)

Movies Watched -- The Big Sick (2017)

Added on by C. Maoxian.

120 minute running time so at least 20 to 30 minutes too long. Culture clash rom-com. Promising beginning, but then it became mawkish or soppy and started to drag on and on and on. My big problem with it was the guy was a wimp… a feminized, milquetoast-y, Millennial-type. He didn’t tell his parents straight up, “I’m not marrying a Pakistani girl, I’m in love with Elia Kazan’s granddaughter,” he just sort of strung them along. Tiny Holly Hunter (mom) looks good for her age, but I didn’t care for her foul mouth, and there was old mumbling Ray Romano (dad) in disguise (beard and glasses). No discussion of the girl’s health care expenses in the corrupt American healthcare system (that would have been interesting). I wasn’t thrilled. Yellow rating at best.

Dick Brody gets it right: “‘The Big Sick’ suffers from an excess of pleasantness, and this very pleasantness thins out its substance, blands out its tone, weakens its comedy … wan and flaccid … [the movie] labors under the curse of the relatable, the likable, the admirable.“

You can lose your family… for love

You can lose your family… for love

Goin' Back to a Simpler Place and Time

Added on by C. Maoxian.

An aged Gladys Knight singing her big hit from ‘73 while sharing the stage and the song with some kids… you can see how great she is by comparison, there’s just no comparison, really. God bless true talent!

Mind The Wasp

Added on by C. Maoxian.

Big fan of Morcheeba … check out Skye Edwards’ body language… what a voice.

Movies Watched -- Oh Lucy! (2018)

Added on by C. Maoxian.

Mostly in Japanese. 95 minute running time so a good length, well within the sacred 100 minute limit. Not a feel-good pic. Unusual one, I liked it, sort of… bleak, but they made sure the ending wasn’t completely tragic. Love that Josh Hartnett played the English teacher… I only know him from Black Hawk Down… I have a lot of respect for him for taking this kind of risk. The critics will love the movie but I’m not sure about the general audience — may be way too dark, too weird. Ideas of loneliness, and middle age, and routine, and… misery. Not a comedy.

Tentatively gets a green rating from me… may make my Top Ten list for 2018, but I haven’t seen many movies from that year yet.

Love conquers all

Love conquers all

Movies Watched -- The Guardians (2018)

Added on by C. Maoxian.

In French. 134 minute running time so at least 30 to 40 minutes too long. I watched it at 2.5x ffwd. World War I France … prosperous farm family takes on a lovely redhead orphan to help them while their sons are off at war … one of the sons knocks up the girl, but then he drops her like a hot potato when he thinks she’s fooling with American soldiers, which she isn’t…. the matriarch of the family turns out to be rather cruel herself, but preserving their social status is everything. It wasn’t terrible, just way way too long. Yellow rating at best.

As good as any man

As good as any man

Movies Watched -- Western (2018)

Added on by C. Maoxian.

120 minute running time which means it was 20 to 30 minutes too long. About a crew of blue-collar German guys building a hydro power plant in Bulgaria. It's sort of a modern cowboy thing, but just strange. The lead actor looks like an aged Marlboro Man with a two-pack a day habit. He's alone and he's lonely ... doesn't really get along with the other crew members, has a weird relationship with the Bulgarian villagers. Everyone looks poor and sort of hopeless, which reminded me of China. I wasn't thrilled, it just sort of made me uncomfortable, the whole movie. Not sure why Netflix has it listed as a thriller, but it's pure Art House stuff. Yellow rating if you’re interested in German expatriates in a Balkan country.

Anything can happen in a village

Anything can happen in a village

Trading Notes -- 20190307 Thursday

Added on by C. Maoxian.

Too exhausted to post at end of day… crazy day with BPTH, I didn’t lose anything thank god (or make anything in it, bah). SEEL also active, I did trade that one and did ok. Feeling sort of burned out from doing these daily notes… I’ll put it on hiatus for now. Here’s a 1-minute chart of BPTH through 12:30PM:

2019-03-07_12-28-17 bpth.jpg

Trading Notes -- 20190306 Wednesday

Added on by C. Maoxian.

Broad tone poor, indexes down half a percent (the horror), but I had no idea since HTB SDJ BPTH (246K EOD) had all my attention. Took one stab at it with the bookie (0.02 borrow), lost, and of course didn’t have another day trade to “make it back.” Little angry with myself since I sized 2.25x in a greedy effort which means the loss was 2.25x more than normal, bad… but with multiple day trades of course woulda “made it back.” See how dangerous the thinking is? :-) Also ignored an early long in it which I approached as a potential short only (fixed thinking), which is terrible and costly. AYTU (34.5K EOD) and SSLJ (8.97K EOD sub-dollah) were interesting briefly in the morning, but BPTH was the only game in town, what a screamer. Kind of thing that could bust a cheesy ‘stache kid from the sunshine state, but we’ll never know since he only wins. Included four Day Two charts for your StuckAtaProfit enjoyment.

Trading Notes -- 20190305 Tuesday

Added on by C. Maoxian.

Wife had doctor appt so more or less out all day … tried a quick short flier on DSS before leaving and stopped out at tightened stop, reversing there woulda worked, but it was a no play gamble, bad. Also the IB borrow effect was in play, since I had a borrow I just shorted willy-nilly as a result. That will change when I move to the bookie with the bulk of trading… also commish on 10,000 shares add up quick ($50 a side). TSX played a nice one minute reversal in PETZ (see chart below), but I didn’t open the bookie. Broad market mixed it looks like.

DSS 50.6K, PETZ 44.8K HTB, NCTY 31.1K HTB, AWSM 24.0K HTB … included CIFS and JMU charts to show what it’s like to be StuckAtaProfit after paying 7x for an overnight borrow.

Trading Notes -- 20190304 Monday

Added on by C. Maoxian.

Broad tone neg, gasp, the horror, but indexes only down slightly. CIFS and JMU to HTBs du jour … IB had some CIFS PO but had to be pre-borrowed … JMU totally impossible to borrow, even the bookie didn’t have some at first (then found some) … CIFS 119K, JMU 55.6K … worked on getting long today, went pretty well though it felt extremely weird and unnatural, but I have to overcome this problem if I want to get back to making half a mill a year. Was flipping through watchlist and STNE was on there and I caught it just about right and it tanked, sort of complete dumb luck. BPTH Day Two was squeezy and I wasn’t involved since there was so much action in CIFS and JMU. YRIC sub-dollar Chynar garbage, no borrow at IB and bookie doesn’t allow sub dollar shorts oh well.