The Blockbusters

I actually made good on a promise to myself this summer!

I swore going into June that I would go and see Spy and Jurassic WorldBecause if I didn’t – I would put it off till I was 90 and regret not seeing either film for years.

So I DID!

Spy was really great, far less slapstick then I had expected, but lots of fun.

Jurassic World was everything I wanted it to be. I got my fill of dinos eating people and plenty of nostalgia.

What surprised me about both of these movies was their ability to take a predictable scenario and revitalize it. No, they didn’t make it unpredictable – but they made the predictable fun to watch and reminded (me at least) of why certain tropes are over used. I wasn’t expecting anything more from Jurassic than a lot of dinos, a lot of CGI, some wisecracks amidst the blood and that’s ok – they delivered just what I wanted without the whole movie feeling pathetic and tired.

Also Melissa McCarthy – I adore her, she’s gorgeous and a force to be reckoned with.

Go see these films – laugh, cry, yell at the screen. You won’t regret it!

So little time…..

I’m quite proud of all I’ve accomplished in the last several weeks.

I’ve applied and been accepted to ASU Online! One step closer to finishing a degree, still no clue what I’m going to do with it but it’s a start.

I watched the 1966 Academy Award winner A Man for All Seasons. Adapted from the Tony award winning play, it tells the story of Thomas More, whose silence over Henry VIII’s marriage to Anne Boleyn cost him his life.

It was an excellent film that was rather modern in it’s storytelling. It was a piece that reminded me more of The King’s Speech or The Imitation Game which both have far different tones than the previous winners ( i.e. The Sound of Music, West Side Story, Ben Hur). 

I both read and watched The Outsiders for the first time.

I adore the book. It’s dark and gritty and very real. It’s been very hard for me to finish books as of late, probably due to technology ADD, amongst other things; this book I finished in practically two days, I couldn’t put it down.

The movie wasn’t as satisfying as I had wished it to be, despite the amazing cast. Often the acting was a wee bit stiff and the directing a little over dramatic. The beauty of the story is its simplicity, and the drama hurt the film a bit. That being said, it was still fun to watch, especially since alllllll the greats are in it (Tom Cruise, the Karate Kid, Patrick Swayze….).

Speaking of Patrick Swayze – I also watched Ghost and Too Wong Fu Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar. (me? On a Swayze kick?? Nooooo….)

Ghost is now on my list of favorite films ever.

I went into it thinking it was a lame-o chick flick – but alas! No! There’s more to it than just a beautiful relationship, there’s Whoopi Goldberg and scandal and theft! I thoroughly enjoyed myself. Allllsooo, the music was pretty bomb.

Too Wong Fu  is where I really learned that Patrick Swayze was more than just a pretty boy in tight pants. My roommate and I would watch scenes when it came on TV and I was amazed by his performance as Vida (I had no idea it was him till Jess pointed it out). SO of course I had to watch the whole thing and it’s a fun movie.

I’ve also managed to begin reading Slaughterhouse Five which I suspect is the beginning of a long love affair with Vonnegut. I think much like what I enjoyed with S.E. Hinton, he’s very honest and not as stiff as other writers (particularly the classical ones…..).

OH OHHHHH.

I also went on my first date this past Friday.

I suppose this officially puts me in the game…???

If I keep this up it will be a very productive year!

The Olden Days

I have a love of many of the arts.

Apparently I have a problem with picking one and sticking to it.

I like to think it makes me well rounded (whether it actually does or not remains to be seen).

Tonight in particular I found myself watching a video, here, of Vanessa Hudgens performing a song from her show Gigi for Kelly and Michael.

Yes my friends, Vanessa Hudgens from High School Musical is taking the place of Leslie Caron for the new stage version of Gigi.

I cried a little when I first heard the news. Not only do I sincerely love musical theatre (having grown up with the classics and performed for a wee bit) but it’s also a classic film with a wonderful wonderful actress (I adore Leslie Caron – watch Lili or The Glass Slipper – that is providing you have already seen An American in Paris and Daddy Long Legs). 

It is so very hard for me to watch classic roles taken over by modern artists – there’s a timelessness to these works that can rarely be achieved again.

Now all of that being said – I wasn’t as automatically horrified by her performance as I had expected to be. Her voice is quite devoid of the pop tones that kill the atmosphere for me.

I might actually want to see more…….**rubs chin**

Thoughts??

 

 

It’s Friday – Fridayyy

It’s Friday – the 13th! Guess what that meanssssss!!!!

I finally sat down and watched the original Friday the 13th. It’s honestly embarrassing how long it took me to watch considering how much I love horror, the classics in particular. It’s even more embarrassing that I saw the ’09 sequel (part? extension?) before I saw the original.

Thankfully the classic did not disappoint me as much as the ’09 one did. Sure, the acting was a little awkward at times (let’s not talk about those final fight scenes), the dialogue isn’t particularly solid and – considering I’m watching this in the 21st century – the effects weren’t exactly terrifying.

But that doesn’t mean there weren’t things to love.

Everybody died! Sometimes you just need a movie where everyone gets picked off. I am often mildly annoyed (alright, very annoyed) when the story is driven by those three idiots who’ve managed to survive (through no fault of their own) and perilously wander around without any sense (I’m looking at you ’09 reboot….).

Cheesy deaths sure, but decent ones nonetheless.

The music reminded me of Psycho. There was very little of it, but when there was music it was fast paced and panic-y.

Kevin Bacon is adorable. I don’t know why I haven’t binge watched more of his stuff – but I should.

I loved all the shots putting you in the eye of Mrs. Voorhees. The anticipation of what was coming kept me interested.

The cheesy, happy music at the end is priceless.

I can see why it’s a classic but please excuse me, I must now go watch the other 11.

It’s an Imitiation Game Alright

It’s Oscar season and I have  been binge watching as many of the Oscar nominated films as I can.

To be honest – most of them are pretty disappointing. Should that come as a surprise? No. Does it still disappoint me? Yes.

The Imitation Game is the exact premise of The King’s Speech (and basically every historical film ever produced) with a different cast of characters.

Boyhood is being lauded for its format – a 12 year project is quite impressive, however that doesn’t make it a great film (that was 3 hours of my life I can never get back – I’d rather watch the Friday the 13th remake – twice).

Birdman  was the most relevant film I’ve seen thus far, and by far the most creative and artistic. Sure there were moments where I scratched my head a bit, but it was far more enjoyable and thought provoking then the others.

No one is talking about The Judge which was a truly great ensemble and a touching story. One of the few films I’ve seen this year that didn’t feel like a walking cliché (and yes I know Robert Duvall got a nom for the film but does any one else feel that it was sort of obligatory?).

Guardians of the Galaxy – yes, it’s about a bunch of petty villains that save the universe in space but does that make it any less of a great film? Just because a film doesn’t take itself seriously (or happens to have a racoon with a bazooka and a talking tree) shouldn’t mean it gets passed over for other less innovative films.

Apparently Captain America was a great film (no I haven’t seen it yet don’t judge me), as well as The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. 

Now, I’m not saying that I want to see every decent movie that is released make it on the nomination list – but I would like to see a little more variety. Every year it’s always the two or three dramatic historical events and then a couple experimental pieces.What’s the matter with comedy? A movie that we don’t have to take seriously or think critically about?

ORRR or let’s get crazy and throw in an animated film – whhaaatttt. I mean, when was the last time an animated film was nominated for Best Picture? (I looked and it was for Toy Story 3). Both The Lego Movie and How to Train Your Dragon 2 were well received this year, and they aren’t even Disney films.

Why don’t we even rephrase that question and ask – when was the last time an animated film was looked upon as a film and not merely children’s entertainment?

In case you were wondering – the last genre film to be nominated and win Best Picture was LOTR: Return of the King. Though to be fair there are far less decent genre films than there are animated ones (I’m looking at you Hobbit). 

Let’s make some changes people! Art itself is not discriminatory – so why should we in turn discriminate against its different forms?

 

Random News – Just for Fun

In case you hadn’t heard….

Supernatural has been renewed for it’s 11th season. ELEVEN. 

Not only is this exciting for me as a fan, but it’s incredible to see a genre show with limited viewership get this far.

I keep hearing ‘that show is still on the air!?!’ followed by gaping jaws of disbelief. It’s been ten years and yes, it’s still on. And the best part? It’s still relevant. The show is about the boys again, and the current story lines are deeply personal and weighty (I was going to include a joke about how you can’t really relate to the Mark of Cain here, but I couldn’t bring myself to do it because it actually is very real and symbolic – someday I’ll write a whole novel about that).

So say what you will, I get that some people are annoyed about it but that’s the way it goes. I for one am ecstatic – deal.

That being said – Jane the Virgin was also renewed which isn’t surprising considering their Golden Globe win. To be fair, I haven’t seen any of the show, so I don’t really have any just reason to be as angry as I am. But it’s aggravating to see other shows with talent get passed up, especially for the CW. Let’s be real, there isn’t much there that is worth awarding (save for a certain show I could mention about a pair of brothers who hunt evil……ok and Whose Line – duh)

Lea Michelle and now Nick Jonas have joined Ryan Murphy’s Scream Queens for the coming year. This terrifies me because I cannot stand Lea Michelle (I tried, I watched some of Glee and I tried)  and last I checked Nick couldn’t act for beans. Though I suppose in retrospect – Ryan Murphy is pretty hit and miss to begin with so we’ll see how that goes.

New photos from the set of Sherlock have emerged (I say new but it’s been, like a week). You can view the new and interesting costumes here. There are a slew of reasons why our Sherlock and Watson look like they’ve joined Guy Ritchie’s adventures and none of them make any sort of sense within the logic of the show. I’m doing my very very best to hold out my thoughts till the special airs, but I’m already massively annoyed with Steven Moffat as it is.

ABC just announced they’re ordering a crime-thriller from Shonda Rimes – it looks to be headed by solely females which I find fantastic. It’s also been pointed out that ABC is one of the most diverse networks on television. It’s just a pity that all of the shows are so formulaic and bland.

ALSO – big news of the day! Emma Watson has just been officially announced to play Belle in Disney’s new live-action Beauty and the Beast. It’s been a rumor for quite some time now and it’s nice to know it’s official. I should be wary – as we didn’t need a live-action anything. However I adore Emma Watson and Beauty and the Beast will forever be one of my favorite stories. And it’s Disney. I may just weep tears of joy until it’s release.

In case ya’ll are interested in more news like this – follow me on Twitter! I make valid attempts to retweet all the interesting industry news for those who care like I do. I like fun facts and staying in the loop!

Also – Happy Monday everyone – I’m proud of you for making it through the day!

 

 

 

PSA: Asylums are still creepy

I finally finished American Horror Story: Asylum.

It took me a truly embarrassing amount of time, though this season is far more squeamish than the last. It just wasn’t something that was easy to watch in a pitch black house at 1 am.

My favorite part of this show is the cast – not only their character work but their work together as an ensemble. Zachary Quinto literally made me squirm(he’s terrifying and you can’t convince me otherwise) and Jessica Lange creates a character that is so well-rounded.

The story takes place in an insane asylum(the title didn’t give that away at all) in the early 1960s. Not only does the season explore the obvious terror factor in an asylum(old psychiatric practices are akin to Saw, so it’s the perfect playground for a horror show) but they also address the misogynistic society of the time. Women were degraded and tortured for ‘their own good’. Men, in this case Doctor Arden, the Monsignor and Doctor Threadson, use their ‘psychiatry’ or their ‘sanity’ to silence women who’ve found out the  horrific truth about them.

An interesting theme was the contrast of absolute darkness attracted to absolute purity. Doctor Arden’s Nazi background and complete apathy for humanity countered his obsession/love for the nun Mary Eunice. I also appreciated the culmination of Kit and Sister Jude’s stories.

Truth be told, this season gave me quite a bit of paranoia and anxiety, in the best way possible. Thought provoking, chilling, and terrifying. Absolutely what you want out of horror television.

Long overdue

It was obligatory. I’d seen the first Hobbit movie and most of the second one, so naturally I went to see the final film.

Those midnight treks are fun, regardless of the film (or it’s predecessors). There is a mutual excitement that the audience shares with each other in anticipation of the epic that awaits(generally speaking, I don’t know anyone who goes to midnight showings for Rom-Coms).

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies picks up exactly where The Desolation of Smaug left off. Dragon goes to Laketown to destroy basically all of it, aside from a remarkable amount of people, whilst the dwarves do nothing. The dwarves now have their mountain and all of it’s riches, and of course the surviving people of Laketown and Thranduil, king of Jerk-wood, want a piece of what is left. Meanwhile Thorin (King Dwarf in case you didn’t know) has the ‘dragon sickness’, basically meaning he’s become obsessed with his long sought for wealth.

Add all that together and what do you get? A two hour long battle scene over a bunch of gold. Oh, and the orcs – two armies of them, because what’s a battle in Middle Earth without the Dark Lord trying to take over.

It was a far more entertaining two hours than the last two films. Mostly because I have always been a hardcore Legolas fangirl and he definitely got his time to shine. It’s also more fun to see people get decapitated for two hours than to watch them trek through New Zealand for the same amount of time.

Two of my big disappointments were A) the special effects – there were far too many. Not long into the film I decided I was watching a video game and not a live-action movie. This is the same beef I had with the last two films and it angers me because we came to expect so much out of Peter Jackson’s work (really though…why the fake orcs…WHYYY) B) sound mixing – sound editing? whoever is involved with adding the music and dialogue in. The dialogue felt so fake, everything was loud and hyper-stereo, I didn’t believe that the actors were actually speaking during the scene (adding to the whole ‘video game’ feel) The music felt constantly stifled, I often wanted it to soar with the battle but it didn’t. It just sort of sat beneath the ice that Thorin was fighting. C) the love triangle. It was pointless. Neither the film or the story needed it (though I appreciated Legolas’ part in it – he’s such a great elf **dreamy sigh**).

It was a fun time though and not particularly a waste of money. Will I be surprised when it gets near nothing at the awards shows? No, and I’m sorry in advance to the people who will be legitimately sad that it doesn’t. The awards like to think they have some sort of standard **she remarked dubiously**.

 

Coffeeshop Etiquette

This is a public PSA – that will probably at one point become a book (cos I could write a book on this subject).

Tomorrow is Black Friday. Everyone is out shopping and spending more money than they have. They’re stressed out by expectations and planning, and tempers are generally high all around.

I’ve worked retail for about 6 years now and believe me, there is an instantaneous shift in everyones attitude just as November hits. It’s terrifying.

So, here’s your one-stop coffee-shop etiquette for the holidays.

You aren’t a comedian: I promise that everyone has said that line before (you know the one, ‘if it’s not tagged it must be free!’ or  ‘how does a coffee-shop run out of coffee?’ and the multiple variations thereof). Believe it or not, we don’t find it funny. We’ve heard them all, repeatedly, and we can pick up on the subtle bitter undertone. If you must say something of that nature please ensure that your tone is positive (or else we’re inclined to believe you’re a moocher). The quality of the service you receive during the holidays relies greatly on you. 

We know that you’re stressed: Actually everyone in the city knows, they can feel your glare in downtown LA. Believe it or not, there are other people around you who are equally as stressed and that includes the people serving you. The quality of the service you receive during the holidays relies greatly on you. 

You don’t look like Bob: Don’t be stupid, and I mean that in the nicest way possible, but please use all of your brainpower before picking up a drink and taking a swig. Countless Caramel Brulee Frappuccinos for John are lost to Rachel’s who should have picked up hot Skinny Vanilla Lattes. We understand that you’re busy and often in a rush, but we’ve written a name on that cup to help ensure you get what you want (we also like to believe you’re competent enough to know the difference between a hot drink and an iced one). The quality of the service you receive during the holidays relies greatly on you.

 

We know how badly you need that *fill in the blank*: Be it the Chestnut Praline Latte, soy milk in your latte or that specific gift card design you went to four different stores for – we know.  Please be understanding when we can’t accommodate your Christmas wishes, we really are trying (believe it or not we didn’t personally orchestrate this just to inconvenience you) The quality of the service you receive during the holidays relies greatly on you. 

Now speaking from experience, this holiday is going to FLY by without time for you to even blink. Take that time you’re spending waiting for your decaf peppermint mocha frappuccino with extra whip and pumpkin sprinkles and breathe. Enjoy the holiday and the sparkly red decor we spent hours putting up for you, converse with a stranger or even your barista (given they aren’t flying at 100 miles an hour trying to shell out the 40 drinks before yours). You’ll be glad you did!

For the fans

Late late late – that’s all this is and I won’t bother to make excuses for it.

Here are my thoughts on Fan Fiction and Ask Jeeves. (spoilers ahead….ish)

Fan Fiction 

Here it is at last, the celebrated 200th episode.

Was it good? Did it nod appropriately to the past ten years and the fans that have followed the show so closely?

Yes and triple yes. It was the basic monster-of-the-week plot, that just happened to take place in the theatre department of an all-girls school. The department that just happened to be performing a musical of Carver Edlund’s book series Supernatural. (aka the boys lives in case you missed season….4,5,6 and 7)

The music was incredible, it was catchy and sincere. The episode was funny, but never patronizing. Every aspect of the fandom was touched upon (destiel, wincest….Adam) and never once did it feel like they were talking down to us (I’m speaking for myself at least). Each ship was treated with respect and there was a clear message of acceptance ( ‘We have our version and you have yours’).

Not to mention we got to see the boys being the WinchestersBrothers. Dean’s quips are back ( ‘say that again but more like Schwarzenegger’) and they’re working together.

This episode reminds you of why this show is still alive and why we’re still so invested. It was a beautiful tribute (yes, I cried).

Ask Jeeves

I screamed when I saw the preview of this episode. I grew up reading Nancy Drew and watching Masterpeice Mystery (usually BBC productions of Agatha Christie’s aaammmaazzing work). So obviously I was pretty excited about an episode based on CLUE (let’s be honest, I’m still excited about it).

The boys get a call on one of Bobby’s old phones that Bobby (or his next of kin) is a beneficiary to a certain Bunny Lacroix and their presence is needed for the reading of the will (heehee). This leads to two murders, one family of pretention and loads of Clue references.

It was a great monster-of-the-week story, akin to the several before it. However we’re reminded that all is not well in Winchester-land when at the end Dean gets a little carried away when he takes out the shifter. Sam confronts him about it and Dean shuts him off, refusing to converse at all. Looks like we’re back to the old game of deceit again, though it was inevitable considering the Mark of Cain still hasn’t been resolved.

Next week looks to be much more plot than we’ve had the last couple of episodes (Cas, Hannah and Crowley are back **squee**).

I get anxiety just thinking about it (good anxiety I am SO excited). Can’t wait for the rest of the season! (JODY MILLS, CHARLIE, SHERIFF DONNA) **hem**