Posted by & filed under Movie Recommendations, Television Recommendations.

Yeah… school is starting back up again. And I’m pretty sure the weather feels just as groggy about it as I do. If the start of another semester has go you feelin’ blue, don’t fret because the Media Library has plenty of movies and TV shows to keep you laughing, smiling, and feeling better.

Here are a few of our newest comedy titles!

  Minions DVD 16681 Cute, yellow, mini-cyclops creatures that sometimes you just wanna squeeze and eat only to realize they’re not Twinkies. If good-natured animated humor is your style, this one’s for you. Get a Life complete series Get a Life is a short lived phenomenon about a 30 year old paper boy, played by Chris Elliott, where he goes on never ending insane adventures. It’s weird, it’s disturbing, and conclusively pretty rad.   Pixels DVD 16580 Need a movie that you KNOW is gonna be ridiculous? That kind of ridiculous where you kinda groan on the inside but accept the fact that it is pretty funny? Yep. That’s Pixels, featuring Adam Sandler and his usual actor friends. Psych Seasons 1-8 Pineapples. Psychic? Phabulous. Dumb and Dumber to DVD 15994 Honestly, the Dumb and Dumber series sort of speaks for itself. Make yourself feel smarter, but then maybe dumber by watching. Louie Seasons 1-4 A personal favorite, Louie is everything you’re looking for in a comedy: occasional comedy stand ups, dark humor, awkward relationships, moments that might make you cry or cringe, special guests (cough, David Lynch, cough), and basically making fun of the every day life we can all relate to.

So enjoy this semester’s first Friday (and weekend!!!) with some comedy favorites, and maybe the new semester blues wont overcome you.


Posted by & filed under Board Games, Movie Recommendations, Video Games.

It’s been about a week since the year that was came to an end and while you’re still reeling from the realization that the spring semester is just around the corner, I thought it would be a good idea to take you back to the comforting embrace of the past and remember the year 2015. The best way to look back is to take a look at some of the cool new stuff from 2015 that the Media Library has added to its collection. First we’ll start with a couple of film’s biggest movers and shakers. Mad Max: Fury Road DVD 16556 An action packed, adrenaline fueled, edge of your seat, thrill ride of a film that makes you think and speak in hyperbole for months. Checking out this film will make you say to yourself, “Gee, I wish I had seen this in the theater.” Inside Out DVD 16602 Pixar is back! This time with more feelings and Amy Poehler and Bill Hader. What better way to start 2016 than to get in touch with your favorite 2015 emotions. Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain Game 664 PS4 One of the most anticipated games of the year, mostly because you have a dog and horse in the dang game! Seriously, you can’t beat that. Halo 5: Guardians Game 660 Xbox One The year 2015 was the year of 5’s apparently. Catch up on the latest hi-jinks that old cranky Master Chief is getting into. Mysterium Boardgame 329 One of the best tabletop games of the past year is now available to play at the Media Library! This game lets you and six of your friends work together to solve a crime in which the ghost communicates to you via images. Someone even gets to play as a ghost! Wow, that really took me back..TO THE FUTURE PART 2!


That was pretty crazy when that happened. All these items have links to their respective catalog pages and can be accessed here at the Media Library.

Posted by & filed under Hollywood, Movie Recommendations.

If you’re all for holiday movies, but running out of ideas, these movies might be slipping your mind.

  Gremlins DVD 22 gremlins_43621   When you think of gremlins you’re probably thinking oh yeah little creatures running around but oh wait how did the whole mess start? A father trying to get his son a radical holiday gift. Edward Scissorhands DVD 647 MV5BOTE2NDExNjQxMF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwMzQ3NzMxMDE@._V1_SX640_SY720_Screen-Shot-2014-12-17-at-12.44.18-PM   Poor Edward… alone in his castle. Then suddenly he comes down and is hoarded by suburbia insanity, only to be forced back to his home… on Christmas eve! About a Boy DVD 1481 MPW-68322about-a-boy-screencaps-about-a-boy-14329614-620-320   Adorable movie all about the coming-of-age story of a 30 year old dude and his friendship with a young boy. The movie deals with suicide and depression, but in the end it comes together on Christmas day as a celebration of the importance of friends who might as well be family. Batman Returns DVD 6 batman-returns-movie-poster-1992-1020194388tumblr_ngfo8lBCDk1s5e5bko1_500   Batman, Penguin, and Catwoman all join up in a dark Gotham story centered around Christmas holiday season. Die Hard DVD 346 MPW-33771Die-Hard-Christmas-Now-I-Have-a-Machine-Gun-Ho-Ho-Ho   Let’s not forget Bruce Willis and his jokes. If mindless action, explosions, and an insane amount of bullets are more of your holiday style: here ya go.

Posted by & filed under Movie Recommendations.

Today is your chance to show off your martial arts skills, dress up like a ninja, and enjoy some awesome Ninja movies! Because why not. There are over hundreds of ninja movies to choose from, but to help you guys out (because I’m nice), you can pick and choose from the media libraries collection bellow!  

The Anime

Ninja Scroll DVD 1824 If insanely ridiculous plots and kick-ass characters and demonic ninjas are your thing this is for you. 8scJ3Im6D4O2szT6cK2j868lXiV                               Wrath of The Ninja DVD 3213

The Jackie Chan & The Jet Li

Who doesn’t like the legendary kick ass actors of the 20th (mostly) century?   Rush Hour DVD 3362/Snake in the eagle’s shadow DVD 3192 MV5BMjAyMzAyNzY5N15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwNjU3MTc0MQ@@._V1_SX640_SY720_qnkpbxjk   Hero DVD 1647/ First of Legend DVD 1635


The Both of Them

And what could possibly go wrong with them together? The Forbidden Kingdom DVD 10712  

The Other Ones

Beverly Hills Ninja DVD 3203 This is one of those films where one picture can pretty much sum it up: hills-ready TMNT DVD 10986                                                                           Kung Fu Panda DVD 9481 You know the drill, Pizza, Kick Butt, Repeat.                                   I just really want to hug a panda, ok? 405644479_dc91b30cd6MOV_1fa5d05d_b

Posted by & filed under Board Games.

Every Tuesday, UNT Media Library highlights a title from their growing collection of tabletop games. This week, read about: Bohnanza box cover

Bohnanza, Boardgame 234

Number of Players: 2-7
For Ages: 12+
Duration of Play: 45 minutes
  As we approach the Thanksgiving holiday, our thoughts turn to turkey, potatoes, and cranberry sauce. Yams, glazed carrots, and pumpkin pie. Beans? Maybe, but perhaps it’s not the first food to come to mind. You don’t really think about beans when you think about super fun tabletop games either. However! That’s where Bohnanza comes in. “Bohne” is the German word for bean, and in Bohnanza, you farm beans! (It’s much more exciting than it sounds.) Bohnanza plays up to 7 players, and might be just the ticket for playing with family after the food coma wears off. Have a great holiday this week!

From the publisher:

TO BEAN OR NOT TO BEAN!” Bean farming was never so much fun! In Bohnanza, you have two or three bean fields and a handful of bean cards to plant in those fields. When you sell beans, you earn more for growing more of one variety than a few several. Thus, you want to plant as many of your favorites as you can. But you must plant the beans in your hand in the order you got them. To get rid of the beans you don’t want to plant, you trade them to other players for those you want. With clever trading, you get the cars you want without helping the other players too much. In the end, the player who warns the most gold is the winner! This already expanded game has 11 bean varieties: enough for 7 players, but it also has rules for as few as two. Now everyone can be a successful bean farmer!

— Spiel + Freizeit; Rio Grande Games

Posted by & filed under Movie Recommendations.

The Miyazaki legacy: film collection

Miyazaki_Films   hayao_miyazaki_2905000c
“You must see with eyes unclouded by hate. See the good in that which is evil, and the evil in that which is good. Pledge yourself to neither side, but vow instead to preserve the balance that exists between the two.”   -Hayao Miyazaki
    Hayao Miyazaki is a Japanese producer, director, writer, and artist. He is critically acclaimed, worshiped even, in Japan and worldwide. His animations, whether as mangas, series, or films, are one of the most recognizable themes of Japanese anime and cultural identity.   On Nov. 17th, 2015 Miyazaki’s film collection on Blu-ray was officially made available on amazon: The Collected Works of Hayao Miyazaki. For those of us who cannot afford such a wonderful package, here is a list of his movies available at the media library.
  1. The Castle of Cagliostro (1979, director)
  2. Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (1984, director)*
  3. Castle in the Sky (1986, director)*
  4. My Neighbor Totoro (1988, director)
  5. Kiki’s Delivery Service (1989, director)*
  6. Porco Rosso (1992, director)THE-KINGDOM-OF-DREAMS-AND-M-thumb-630xauto-51842
  7. Whisper of the Heart (1995, writer)
  8. Princess Mononoke (1997, director)
  9. Spirited Away (2001, director)
  10. Howl’s Moving Castle (2004, director)*
  11. Ponyo (2008, director)
  12. The Secret World of Arrietty (2010, writer)
  13. From Up on Poppy Hill (2011, writer)
  14. The Wind Rises (2013, director)
*These are also available in Blu-ray! In addition, check out The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness, a movie discussing the notorious Studio Ghibli co-founded by Miyazaki. The documentary follows director Hayao Miyazaki, producer Toshio Suzuki, and director Isao Takahata for a year as the studio is working on two feature films.

Posted by & filed under Board Games.

  Love it or hate it, Monopoly is hands down one of the most iconic board games in existence. This elaborate, often long, game of taking ownership and buying as much as you can was very much a reflection of actual monopolizing in the society it was created in. jpg_PDVD_012     Z0091220   Monopoly is commonly known to be invented by Charles Darrow in the 1930s. Until recent years, this seemed to be the case. But recently it was discovered that Elizabeth Magie, a progressive individual, created a game called The Landlord’s Game, which was the actual first known version of the Monopoly we know today.       38_00392       It was meant to originally point out the immorality of Monopoly, particularly reflecting on Monopolists of those times like Carnegie and Rockefeller. The Monopoly we know now is exactly what it wasn’t originally meant to be: The elitists taking control of territories and business.           But, looking past that, Monopoly is now the most popular family board game and has grown into multiple versions. With today’s monopoly games you can find pretty much any theme you can think of, from Dog-opoly, Horse-opoly, Seinfield-opoly, etc. output_OuqWYtUNT Media Library has various kinds of Monopoly games, including a card game version, a junior version, and Monopoly for the wii! So, Happy National Play Monopoly Day folks! Get your game on.
Monopoly (Classic) Boardgame 65
Monopoly (Wii) Game 423 Wii
Monopoly: Here & Now Boardgame 30
Monopoly: Here & Now: The World Edition Boardgame 31
Monopoly Deal Game: Card Game Board game 185

Posted by & filed under Board Games.

Every Tuesday, UNT Media Library highlights a title from their growing collection of tabletop games. This week, read about: Hive box cover

Hive, Boardgame 233

Number of Players: 2
For Ages: 9+
Duration of Play: 20 minutes
  Hive is an addictive strategy game in which two players compete to block in the other player’s queen bee. The players have an arsenal of bugs, each with its own rules for movement – much like in chess. Think ahead, and watch out for spiders. (The spiders aren’t special to the game though. I just think they’re creepy.)

From the publisher:

A fantastic game for two, be the first player to surround your opponent’s Queen Bee using a team of assorted creatures. Because each creature has its own way of moving about the Hive, the game is sometimes called ‘nature chess’, yet simpler rules, no need for a board and an added dimension make it a far more flexible and accessible game that can be played anywhere. Simply great fun!

— Smart Zone

If you like Hive, you may also enjoy these titles, also available at UNT Media Library:
Mega Chess Set image Go box cover Ricochet Robots box cover

Mega Chess Set, Bag 1 & Bag 2

Go, Boardgame 144

Ricochet Robots, Boardgame 216

Posted by & filed under Board Games.

Every Tuesday, UNT Media Library highlights a title from their growing collection of tabletop games. This week, read about: Tsuro box cover

Tsuro, Boardgame 313

Number of Players: 2-8
For Ages: 8+
Duration of Play: 20 minutes
  Tsuro is a short game in which players collaboratively create a board and competitively strive to keep their pieces on the table the longest.

From the publisher:

Create your own journey with Tsuro: The Game of the Path! Place a tile and slide your stone along the path created, but take care. Other players’ paths can lead you in the wrong direction—or off the board entirely! Paths will cross and connect, and the choices you make affect all the journeys across the board. Find your way wisely and be the last player left on the board to win! Stay the path–your journey begins here.

— Calliope games

If you like Tsuro, you may also enjoy these titles, also available at UNT Media Library:
Ticket to Ride box cover Hive box cover Blokus box cover

Ticket to Ride, Boardgame 48

Hive, Boardgame 311

Blokus, Boardgame 66

Posted by & filed under Movie Recommendations.

You may recognize aspects of a Film Noir classic with or without knowing the formal definition of this genre. One source defines Film Noir as “a style of film-making developed in the 1940s, with a plot involving suspense, mystery, crime, and corruption, and a bleak, often shadowy, setting, or a film in this style. Film noir begins as the French appreciation of an American genre: the thriller or mystery film with a disillusioned or neurotic hero afraid of the world, the city, the night, and femmes fatales. ” (Allen). Both films discussed in this post, as well as other Film Noir classics, are available at the UNT Media Library collection. LauraTCMdbImage Click image for Laura TCM trailer page Femme fatales and cynics are common characters in Film Noir. Enter Clifton Webb as Waldo Lydecker, the eloquent cynic with a dark side, in Laura (1944).  Webb may steal scenes but never truly gets the girl. The dark humor and self –absorption of Webb’s characters understandably frustrates others.  Cool Detective Mark McPherson, played by Dana Andrews, immerses himself in Laura’s case both professionally and personally. Gene Tierney is believably cast as multi-talented Laura, who captivates almost every one. DarkCornerTCMdbIMageSqaure Click image for Dark Corner TCM trailer page. The Dark Corner (1946), is more obscure than Laura (1944). The pleasant surprise for me was the female lead played by Lucille Ball. She is not a femme fatale, but a partner. The lead, Bradford Galt, played by Mark Stevens, is another cynic but when you learn more about his past, you get it. Clifton Webb appears yet again, this time as Hardy Cathcart. It is not a risky choice because it is pretty much typecasting.  As in Laura, he wants to add the women he admires to his collection of valuables, but he seems more vulnerable because his betrayal is less perceived and more real. In Film Noir, you may find characters who are seemingly devoid of morals faced off with prominent characters who may share the cynicism but not to the point of unapologetic violence. ‘“There goes my last lead. I feel all dead inside. I’m backed up in a dark corner and I don’t know who’s hitting me.” (qtd. in Nowlan). There are other parallels and topics to explore with this series, but I will stop there. I am not a film expert, just a fan. I do find many of these films to be a fascinating glimpse into America’s cultural past. I often happen upon one of these “classics” by accident or references in film history books.You can film many film books in the library as well.   If you are interested in browsing for similar films at the Media Library, you can do a Subject Search in the UNT Media Library Catalog for Film Noir  The trailers and the film profile pages give you a generous overview of the plot. If you check out these films, I do hope you find them worth your time. Resources:
  • Film Noir. (2007). In R. Allen (Ed.), The penguin English Dictionary. London, United Kingdom: Penguin. Retrieved from
  • Despair and desperation. (2013). In R. Nowlan & G. Nowlan, Film quotations: 11,000 lines spoken on screen, arranged by subject, and indexed. Jefferson, NC: McFarland. Retrieved from
  • Preminger, O., Dratler, J., Hoffenstein, S., Reinhardt, B., Tierney, G., Andrews, D., Price, V., … Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, Inc. (2005). Laura. Beverly Hills, CA: 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment. UNT Media Library DVD 9636   Series: Fox film noir; 1
  • Hathaway, H., Dratler, J., Schoenfeld, B. C., Kohlmar, F., Ball, L., Webb, C., Bendix, W., … Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, Inc.,. (2005). The dark corner.  UNT Media Library DVD 14533  Series: Fox film noir; 10
  • Laura (1944), The Dark Corner (1946) and Clifton Webb  profiles. Turner Classic Movie Database (TCMdb) at:
Happy #Noirvember! ~ Lilly Ramin (@lillylibrarian)