Friday, December 27, 2013

The 12 Dates of Christmas/Ephraim's Rescue

So late Christmas night, after seeing The Hobbit, we wanted to watch something. We started watching "Ephraim's Rescue" but then we had to stop it, because of me.

I can barely handle depressing parts of movies, and "Ephraim's Rescue" is all about the rescue of the Martin Hardcart Company. (If you know your Mormon history, you know that these people suffered some desperate times. My husband is a decedent of survivors, in fact.) So the movie reached a point where I just was too emotionally exhausted after watching "The Hobbit" to handle it.

So instead, we turned on the light and fluffy "12 Dates of Christmas." I love Amy Smart. She's not the best actress, but she amuses me. And I didn't even recognize the "Save by the Bell" star until my husband pointed him out. He was delightful!

While this isn't the best Christmas movie ever, (because we all know what IS the best Christmas movie ever,) it was just what I needed.

Amy Smart's step-mother sets her up on a blind date Christmas Eve, but Amy Smart is still stuck on her ex-boyfriend. Does she ruin her chances with the blind date? Well, she repeats the same day 12 times in a row, in hopes that she can make things right, and change herself in the mean time.

It's kind of like "Groundhog's Day." Did you read my "Groundhog's Day" post? If you haven't seen that movie, you really should.

And if you've seen too many depressing or violent movies this holiday season, perhaps try Netflixing something a little less intense, and a little more nonsensical.

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

"The Hobbit Part II"
There are things I like about this movie, and things I don't like.
I like that it includes Bard, my favorite character from The Hobbit, pictured here with Legolas.

I like Lost's Kate, as "She-Elf."
I like that it includes my favorite part of the hobbit, barrel dwarfs!
I do not like creepy-elf.
But I'll take creepy-elf over goofy-goblin (see the first Hobbit) any day.
And I like Smaug. He is amazing, but too scary. The last hour and a half of the movie didn't have any down time.

I need down time.

And the movie was far too long. This movie should have been one movie, two at most. Three is ridiculous.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

The Lone Ranger

Starring "The Social Network"'s Armie Hammer, Johnny Depp, and Helena Bonham-Carter. "The Lone Ranger" is pretty much "The Mark of Zorro," AND "The Legend of Zorro" combined. (Well, there's a kid in it, so it's kinda like the latter.)

But what's wrong with that? Nothing.

The movie was fun. Johnny Depp was not Jack Sparrow again, (not that there's anything wrong with that either.) And, best of all, Helena Bonham-Carter was in it. She is so fabulous. Not only is her acting incredible, but she's also just so damn interesting. It's as if she's the embodiment of this part of me, a part that I really, really like, like, the coolest part of me. It's like I'm Edward Norton in "Fight Club" and she's my Tyler Durden. It's like that. It's a lot like that.

Well, except I don't need to get beat up in order to sleep at night.... Well, I actually haven't tried it.

Was this a post about "Fight Club?" or "The Lone Ranger?"

It doesn't matter. I'm done.

Okay wait, I'm not done. Helena Bonham-Carter plays the role nearly every Western includes, AKA: The prostitute with a heart of gold. Oh, you don't think your typical Western includes a prostitute with a heart of gold? Well, you're wrong! Maybe try keeping your eyes open at the movies, people! Even "Gone with the Wind" has one!

Okay. Now I'm done.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Red II

Better than the first.

And the first wasn't bad!

And even though our friend Sarah is a complete ditz, she's so lovable that I can't help but to identify with her not as the "helpless woman" but as the "normal person representative."

Although, as far as axing the whole "damsel in distress" thing, they could have done a little bit better, but whatever.

Also, I really like Storm Shadow. Or, um Byung-hun Lee. So much so that I'm thinking of looking up every single movie he's ever been in and watching all of them, (except that first GI Joe again. Although, watching it and fast-forwarding [a term from the past that means to skip,] to all his scenes wouldn't be a bad idea.) Okay, let's see, ah, I see he's almost exactly 10 years older than I am. He gets bonus points for that. I'm so tired of actors being, like, younger than me and crap like that. It's like, come on Jennifer Lawrence. Way to be young. Whatever.

Anyway, near the end my husband kept going, "Why are they doing that?" "What are they doing?" And I kept saying, "I haven't known what was going on since this whole thing started." (I blame the ten month old climbing on us during the entire movie, as to why we couldn't follow the story.) But yet it was still enjoyable, fun, and exactly what I was hoping for. And I love the cast! Seriously, great cast.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

LIVE The Sound of Music

Or should we call it, "The Sound of Trained Professionals Weeping?" No? Perhaps, "The Sound of Julie Andrews Weeping?" No? "The Sound of Boonie Making Fun of It?" Or is that too literal? Well, whatever you want to call it, it's boring.

The acting is boring. The singing is boring. The set is boring. The script was boring. The costumes are boring. The BORING is BORING!

A lot of people on Twitter were getting their tighty-whities in twisty-whisties about how, "You can't compare the live show to the movie." I ask you, if not then what CAN you compare!?! That's like saying, "You can't compare apples to apples!" You absolutely CAN compare movie versions to other versions, whether they be plays, or books, or actual apples. If there's an apple version of The Sound of Music, you better believe I'm gonna compare it to this TV crappy one!

A few Twits suggested other classic musicals pop singers and country stars could botch up. And that was humorous.

As boring as it was, it was nice that NBC did something different. What else are you gonna get excited about? A crap-sap Christmas TV movie on Lifetime?

But now that it's over, someone please give Carrie Underwood a glass of water. Her throat must be KILLING her.

I prefer Brandy's Cinderella, (left.) Oh ya burnt!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters

Clarice (in black) is played by The Hunger Games' Glimmer.
It's been so long since I've read these books that I seeing the movie was like seeing it for the first time.

While I read the books, I thought they were like Harry Potter, but the movie was SO like Harry Potter that I wanted to... say something about it.

The crazy hell taxi with annoying navigators was too much like the Night Bus.

Then there are the thousands of other reasons that I don't feel like getting into right now. Thank goodness this isn't an English paper and I don't have to... you know, type stuff.

Wow, writing blogs is not what I should be doing when I'm this tired and a little dehydrate

But I like these Percy Jackson movies and books. They're better acted than Harry Potter, and OMG, did I already blog about this movie?

Okay. That's it. I'm gonna go to sleep.

(Okay, I didn't already blog about this movie. I'm not going THAT crazy, but I am going to stop blogging for the night.)

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Catching Fire, or Hunger Games II: Still Hungry, or Hungry Hungry Katniss

I love Peeta's "I'm too hot for you, silly President" expression.
Well, I loved it. And I kind of loved seeing it with the "non-believers" two days after it came out, because I'd hear this, "OH MY GOSH!" coming from the right side of the theater when something unexpected happened. I had JUST re-re-read the book, so NOTHING SURPRISED ME. MUAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Except, I still had little happy surprises. SPOILER: When Plutarch Heavensbee leaves President Snow right after Katniss and Johanna take the wire down to the beach, I know he's not coming back, and I LOVED KNOWING
! MUAHAHAHA! But, I loved that little added part.

I'm glad they gave these movies some money because the casting is DEAD ON. The actors look EXACTLY like how I pictured them in the books, (well, almost.) But, unlike so many books-gone-movies, the acting actually is good.

Well, okay, SOME of the Harry Potter actors are good, and... one of the Twilight actors... yeah, that's about right.

I loved being able to see the end, or the almost end, because that part of the book is very fussy because Katniss isn't entirely coherent and it leaves you thinking, "Uh... what just happened? Is Johanna crazy?"

Well, she IS, but you know what I mean.

You should go see it. It doesn't matter if you read the book before or after you see it. You should do both, but in whatever order you choose. I'm a little surprised you've read THIS, but you haven't read Catching Fire. Seriously people.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Confessions of a Midnight Premier Line Cop

Arwen says, "If you wanted to sit together,
you should have arrived earlier. I got here 5 hours early
to get THESE seats, and I'm not moving a single chair over."
Now that I have a nine-month old baby, I don't go to midnight premiers. My life has gotten way less stressful.

I used to go to just about ALL OF THEM.

I used to arrive an hour and five minutes early, (to beat out all those who arrive an hour early.) Wait, no, that only applies for opening night when there's still a line, but not a massive one. For a MIDNIGHT PREMIER I would arrive HOURS early, or select a friend or beloved family member to do the task. I would bring chairs and designate someone to take them back to the car once they started letting in. I yell at cutters, "THE BACK OF THE LINE IS BACK THERE! WE SEE YOU, YES YOU, IN THE BLUE SHIRT! THE BACK OF THE LINE IS BACK THERE; AROUND THE CORNER, AND DOWN THE STREET!" I would run like a dork on fire once the inevitable free-for-all started.

Ron Weasley says, "Don't get popcorn right
away; get your seats first, THEN
take turns getting snacks and going
to the bathroom."
So, here's what I learned.

Never expect anyone in charge to know what they're doing. You might think, these have been going on since Episode 1, surely they know what they're doing by now. They don't! It's different 19 year olds this time around, because the people who've been there for longer are higher up on the pay-scale and get better shifts, IE: they have midnight premiers off. And these new kids running the midnight shifts are MAD WITH POWER.

Once we waited forever and got into the theater and theater workers who got off early had already claimed their seats! Luckily for them, they were not in the seats I wanted. Otherwise there would have been hell to pay.

Once there were two lines for 3D and one line for 2D. No one knew. I went and asked, and was able to move up in line in front of a couple hundred people.

Bella and Edward will KILL YOU if you
clap too hard once the movie starts.
We know you're excited; we're excited too,
but we want to hear the freaking movie.
Once I arrived late, right before the doors opened to let us in, and my sister and I cut in line. People far behind us started yelling, "THEY CUT! THEY CUT!" But we didn't turn around. They weren't about to get out of line to confront us, and without turning around to look at them, nobody could tell who they were yelling about. Turning around equals fault. We got the seats we wanted. It was a big theater, so they probably did too.

Once, at a strange IMAX theater, out of town, I was first in line. When the usher took my ticket and said, "Theater five." I began to panic. "WHERE'S THEATER FIVE!?!?!?!" Luckily the people behind us in line were kind to lead the way and let me back in front. This kindness is not to be expected!

Once there was a marathon that led to a midnight premier. Most of my group could not get the day off work to wait in line. Only our 60+ year old friend was able to wait in line. She was first in line. When the theater opened their doors and started letting people in, she was pushed aside and hurried past and almost the entire line got in before her. "SHAME ON YOU!" My sister and I lectured the crowd after our arrival, and my sister scolded the management as well. The free-for-all has GOT to end! What's the point of standing in line forever if people can cut in line once the doors open?
Katniss says, "I don't care if your phone rings and you
silence it quickly afterwards. But if you answer it and start
talking, I'm going to skin you alive.

Which brings me to my next point,


I didn't see Harry Potter 7.1 the night it came out, or even the weekend came out. The next day I was told I wasn't a "believer." They may have been right, after all, book 7 sucked, but I don't think believers should feel pressured into missing sleep when they can see it the next day just as easily.

What am I saying? There's nothing like seeing it with a big, excited crowd. The only reason I went and saw those stupid Episodes 2 and 3 was for the fun of the crowd! I'd be doing it right now if I wasn't CRAZY for sleep. Speaking of which, good-night.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Pacific Rim

I was told this was the greatest movie ever. I think what my friend meant to have said was, "This is the greatest movie ever... for a seven year old boy."

It was predictable, weird, and the makers don't understand nuclear physics. It's a fun movie, but so are Transformers, Godzilla, and the Voltron and Big-O cartoons.

The movie doesn't have a lot for women. Now, one might argue that neither does Braveheart, or Gladiator, but those movies had humor, romance, AND action. This movie pretty much just has action and special affects.

Go see it if you like giant monsters and giant robots, and hate good dialog, good acting, good directing, and good movies. OH BURN!

Now, I try to give credit to a movie when it accomplishes what it sets out to do, or is a good movie for what it is. But this movie needed to be funnier, needed to have stronger character development and more interesting characters, and needed to take itself a lot less seriously.

Grown Ups 2

You know I'm a sucker for Adam Sandler movies, but I know they're a bit fart-eater. That's why I was surprised and un-surprised by this movie.

I was surprised because parts were very funny, and not just, "Oh, that's funny" -funny, but "HAHAHAHAHAHA!" -funny.

But I was un-surprised by the fart-eater humor, the crass and crude, the ridiculous, (I did mention it was an Adam Sandler movie, right?)

Like the first Grown Ups, the movie doesn't have a lot of plot, so... again I'm not surprised.

And the crass humor isn't really THAT disturbing as much as it is obnoxious.

All in all, I'm glad we Redboxed it, and I'm glad we didn't see it in theaters.

Oh, and for you Young Adult novel fans, the movie had both Twilight's Jacob (left,) AND The Hunger Games's Cato (above,) in it. Regretfully, they didn't duke it out. But if they did, who do you think would win?

Monday, November 11, 2013

Thor: The Dark World

I thoroughly enjoyed this movie, although it had too much Portman in it for my tastes... and not "good" Portman... except... I'm not sure what "'good' Portman" is. Hmm.
But I don't want to spend this whole post complaining about Natalie Portman. What I'd rather do is point out how great Sif (Jaimie Alexander) is. I'm not saying she's the greatest thing ever, but people are talking about her playing Wonder Woman, and that would okay!

So, here's the movie, Thor, for some crazy reason, misses Jane, (bad Portman,) and she misses Thor. She searches for Thor and instead finds Venom, or, um, aether, which uses her as its host. Meanwhile, this dark elf guy wants the aether and can sense where it is. Thor brings her to Asgard, and the elf dude attacks, killing someone dear to Thor. Thor enlists the help of Loki, and defies the wishes of his father, Odin the King, and together, with Jane, they go to stop Mr. Elf Guy, or, Malekith, (Christopher Eccleston,) rather.
So, the movie is 3 parts Thor I, 1 part Spider-Man III, 1 part Dr. Who.

I liked it.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Orson Scott Card's Ender's Game

The problem with many books-turned-movies is that they lose a big chunk of what made the books great. Relationships, characters, sequences un-necessary to the plot, etc.

The book Ender's Game is mostly built up of Battle School battles, rivalries, and friendships. However this movie was built mostly upon Harrison Ford.

While that's not necessarily a bad thing... any movie can be built upon Harrison Ford. But that's not why we love Ender's Game.

Despite all this, I still love it. I love it for what it is; it is a fun movie.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Bad Guys

Recently someone came across my Facebook page and posted this: Do you think villains are cooler than superheroes? Read our 5.2 Reason why we think they are.

It's a fun post, but it lacks a sense of... BOON.

So, for your rip-off pleasure, I bring you...


That's right. I'm not going to stop at super villains, AKA "Bad Guys," and super heroes. I'm not even going to stop at FICTIONAL characters! **GASP!** "Can she do that?!" I can, silly citizen. Sit back, and watch.

Let's start with who everyone should always start with when discussing fictional characters: Shakespeare. What absolutely amazes me about Shakespeare is that each and every single one of this characters is FASCINATING, and fun to play, watch, or read. This RARELY ever happens in any other play, story, what have you.

For example, let's look at Twilight. You know I'm a Twilight fan, but it's not because of Meyer's amazing turn-of-phrase, or her strong secondary character development. Her character Emmett, for example, has NO depth, NO character, and brings nothing to the story except to add numbers to the Cullen Clan and be there for Rosalie, whose character is a tad more crucial.

But if Shakespeare had written Twilight, (I'll wait for those who have just fainted to regain consciousness,) Emmett would be a fascinating, hilarious, character, who was witty, driven, AND charming.

Oh wow, excuse me. I seem to have just gone off on a crazy Twilight/Shakespeare tangent. Let's get back to the point, shall we?

Shakespeare plays have some of the GREATEST acting roles EVER. And if anyone ever, EVER offers you the chance t
o play a Shakespeare villain, you take it. My favorite is Iago from Othello. In fact, the reason I love that play so much is BECAUSE of Iago. While, sure, who wouldn't kill to play Hamlet? But playing Hamlet is WORK DARNIT! Playing his uncle the King... **shudder** that's just fun. Playing Iago? FUN! Playing Ty
balt? FUN! FUN! FUN! FUN! Why is playing a villain so fun? Because we're nice little people, living in a polite little effing society. We dot our i's to make them easier for other people to read, and tie our shoes so we don't trip on peoples' dogs. Playing villains allows us to escape from being nice. We get to explore revenge, vengeance, gluttony!

Coincidentally, this is also what makes watching villains more fun. We love to watch actors have fun. Above EVERYTHING, we love to watch people have fun.

We love to watch people do things we can't do, but more so, we like to watch people have fun.

I discovered this when I went to see a church production of Andrew Lloyd Webber's "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamc
oat." If you know me, you know I'm a bit of a play snob, music snob, snob-snob, so you'll know that I look on the play as pop-corn theater. It's cheesy, and there's nothing "impressive" about it. (You want impressive, you go see a Mozart opera.) However, if you read my blog you know that I'm a fan of fun. This musical is fun, and nobody showcased that fun more than this church's production. The actors were mostly of the teen-aged variety, (Now, I've worked with teen-aged actors; it's not easy, but it is fun.) I'd bet that over half the cast had never been in a play before. But it was one of the best times I have ever had in an audience, because the cast was having SO MUCH FUN!

So, in a nutshell, we love villains because they're fun, and the people portraying them are having fun. Do you think Heath Ledger was having fun while he was playing The Joker? You can TELL he was having a blast! You could tell by his ingenuity, by the way he said, "Yeah," after he was asked, "You think you can steal half our money and get away with it?" You could tell by the way he clapped for the newly appointed Commissioner. We didn't like the performance because it was gritty; we liked it because Ledger was having a time.

But that's not the only reason we love villains! We also love them because they just don't care. And the number one rule to coolness is to not care. If you care, you're not cool. And villains don't care; their sidekicks care. Lefou, Gaston's little buddy from Beauty and the Beast, he cared. (Although, Iago, from Aladdin, I'd say didn't care, and was a lot cooler than Lefou. Although, albeit, obnoxious.)

There are more reasons, but I'm not going to tell you everything. Sometimes you do have to think for yourselves. Geez, people.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Monsters University

I've never seen Revenge of the Nerds, but apparently MU takes its plot from that movie. Apparently so does House Bunny, which I regrettably HAVE seen. (Note: the only good movie starring Anna Faris is Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs.)

But I was pleasantly surprised with this movie. It avoided one over-used under-dog mechanic, and traded it in for a less-used one, making the movie way less predictable. (SPOILER: When they were nearing the end of the Scare Games, it was time for the movie to introduce a Billy Madison style disqualification. The fat wrestler comes out and gives a reason why the team should be disqualified. And while this KIND of happened, it didn't happen until later, and Sully's confession brought it on, not a fat wrestler... although Sully IS really big.)

I loved this movie. I LOVED it. It was care-free, and ADORABLE. I'm glad we bought the digital copy so my son can watch it on our iPad on long car trips when he's a little older. I'm sure he'll love it.

I DID call that they were invited to that party to be Carried. And they totally were. (If you get a chance to Carrie someone, you have to take it... at least when making a movie.)

The purple guy what resembles a bridge is my favorite.

To quote Floyd, "I want to see it again!"

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

About Great Gatsby

I take back what I said about it.

The first time I critiqued the movie was after I had watched a bad copy. I watched a better copy and effing loved it.

I thought that might happen.

Baz Luhrmann is all about spectacle, glances, and images. 80% of the story is seen.

But Daisy is still the worst, Jer.

Monday, October 28, 2013

The Musical Every Teenager Loves

Of course, I could be talking about a number of musicals. Wicked comes to mind. But no, I'm talking about GREASE! 

Teenagers love it more than anyone else in the world. Why? Maybe it's because the movie's (I'm only talking about the movie, not the play. The play is weird.) about teenagers. Maybe it's because DJ's play that awfully cheesy medley at teen dances. Maybe it's because they don't see the movie until they're teenagers, because it's not exactly kid-friendly.

I'm not saying "Little Shop of Horrors" or "Les Miserables" is kid friendly. But at least the morals of those stories are appropriate.

Grease, on the other hand, is a story about an innocent, strong teenage woman who gets mixed up with a bad group of gangsters, falls in love, and turns into a big slutty tramp.

Is this the message we want to be sending the youth of America? No. Do they eat it up? Apparently.

And have you LISTENED to some of those lyrics John Travolta blurs together in, "Grease Lightening?" They had to edit the words when they performed the song on Glee. And that's saying something!

Now, I loved me some Grease when I was a teenager. I knew the ending was lame, and not to pay too much attention to "Grease Lightening," and that the "Beauty School Drop-Out" song was a fat waste of time, but Danny Zuko was hot, the characters were interesting, the songs were fun, everyone else loved it, and... the songs were fun.

The moral of the story being, sometimes we like musicals because the music is good. Sometimes we like musicals because........................................ Well, sometimes it seems there's just no good reason. 

Teenagers of America, you could do worse.

Friday, October 18, 2013

The Careers

Now that we've got another Hunger Games installment coming up, let's talk about The Careers.

The Careers are kids from Districts 1, 2, & 4. They train for the Games and volunteer, and look at the competition as a means of providing riches and glory. Usually the winner of the Games comes from one of these Districts.

In The Hunger Games The Careers are...

From District 1: Glimmer & Marvel.
District 1 is the wealthiest of the Districts, and supplies the Capitol with luxuries including wigs and diamonds.
Glimmer is a pretty blond Barbie who operates a bow and arrow, (not as well as Katniss does,) and is killed by Katniss via Tracker Jackers, (mutant yellow jackets.)
Glimmer is portrayed in the film by Because her death is rather early on, we don't see a lot of acting from her, but what we do see pretty much matches what we expected from the book.
Marvel is also killed by Katniss. He's a spear thrower and meets his end after spearing Rue. He is played by . His part is so small that Katniss doesn't even know his name.

From District 2: Clove and Cato.
District 2 is all about masonry.
Clove throws a pretty mean knife, (or a couple of them,) and comes close to killing Katniss a number of times, but eventually is pulled off of her by Thresh, (from District 11,) and is killed. She's played by I like Isabelle. She has a good Clove-look, and her acting is pretty awesome, except when Thresh is slamming her head against the cornucopia; she screams for Cato more like Thresh is tickling her, and less like he's killing her.
Cato is the ring-leader of the pack of Careers, and wields a sword. His casting is near perfect. He looks formidable, but he also looks like a child. He's played by  whose final scene on top the cornucopia is pitiful... in a good way! His hand is shot, by Katniss, then he falls into a pack of mutant dogs and is done away with by the mercy of Katniss's bow.

From District 4:
District 4 supplies the Capitol with fish.
We don't know their names. The boy tribute was killed immediately at the cornucopia blood bath. (In the movie, Cato kills him during that scene.) And the girl was killed by the Tracker Jackers, ie: by Katniss. However, in the movie she is killed when her male counterpart was, by the same hands. I guess they didn't make it into the alliance.

In Catching Fire, things are a little bit different and the tributes have all been in the ring before, making everybody Career material.

From District 4 we have, of course, Finnick Odair, played by The Pirates of the Caribbean's On Stranger Tides' Phillip. He won the 65th Hunger Games, (We're on the 75th. Catch up!) His lady friend is Mags, who won who knows which Hunger Games, and you'll have to see the movie, or heaven forbid, read the book, to learn what happens to either of them.

From District 2 we have Brutus and Enobaria. You'll have to read/watch to learn more about them too.

From District 1 we have a brother and sister team, Cashmere and Gloss. (Gloss is the boy.) I'm not telling what happens to them either.

Which brings me to my own Careers. When my husband and I were directing a play I wrote, we naturally had to have auditions. During said auditions we quickly realized we had two categories of actors: Careers, and the others. No. We're not telling you their names. But they honed their craft, and had deadly accuracy. ;)

If you'd like to see where the districts lie, or where you would be, look no further. (Actually, you may want to look further. There are loads of Panem maps and each one is different. This one claims to be the most accurate.)

It looks like the best part of the country is underwater. Too bad. Although, where I live now survived. Yay! Which brings me to my next question; is District 6 the cow district? No. It's their transportation district. Weird.

The problem with this map, and others like it, is it leaves no room in between the Districts. So, if this is "the most accurate," then I'm guess I'm gonna hold my breath and wait for a better one to come along. Or make one my-frickin'-self.