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It’s OK, yo

29 Sep

I’m so happy Neely over at A Complete Waste of Makeup is doing linkups for her “It’s OK” posts. I have no idea how I didn’t realize she was doing them before!

* It’s OK to  look at the above button and think, “Yo, there’s an apostrophe missing.”

* It’s OK if seeing “The Lion King” in theaters gives you chills on multiple occasions.

* It’s OK to really dislike 3-D movies.

* It’s OK to forgo a party this weekend and just stay home with yourself.

* It’s OK to spend a Friday night in the basement of your bestie’s parents’ house going through her stuff from junior high and laughing at now nerdy you were.

* It’s OK to then proceed to make old school friendship bracelets while you discuss marriages and relationships.

‘You follow ol’ Rafiki. He know the way’

29 Sep

Last night, a 28-year-old woman and a 37-year-old man went to see “The Lion King” in the movie theater.

And holy hell, it was just as good this time around on the big screen as it was the first time, when I was 12. (The beau and I agreed a long time ago that our age difference — which I completely love — was the grossest when I was 12 and he was 22.)

And it solidified a thought I’d had a few times before: I miss real animation. That computer stuff Pixar does is cool, but I don’t think it’s possible to beat the beauty of a hand-drawn African savanna.

My other solidified realization? I don’t like 3-D movies, especially when the extra dimension is added after the movie was already made. It doesn’t add anything except a pair of annoying glasses, and the vibrant colors seem darker. The beau and I actually left one movie theater that was only showing the flick in 3-D to see if another theater in town would let us watch it the ol’-fashioned away. Alas, we were forced into 3-D.

Rafiki is probably my favorite Disney character ever. I had this exact image printed out and tacked on my wall to hide the rip in the corner of my Lion King poster, which was adult Simba and Nala nuzzling each other.

It couldn’t ruin the experience, though. “The Lion King” was the cool thing in the sixth grade. I remember something like three Lion King-related songs in the talent show that year, and I was so jealous that I wasn’t up there singing that I’m going to be a mighty king (so enemies beware).

I admit it: I had a crush on Simba when I was little. I thought he had pretty hair.

I think I need to get a VCR. I have all the old school Disney (where “old school” is defined as “The Lion King” and anything before it) VHS tapes, and I’m itching to watch them.

I figure plenty of parents took their kids, but did any other adults go see this re-release just for themselves? What other flick do you want Disney to put back in the theater? Mine is “Sleeping Beauty.” That is  hands-down the most beautiful   cartoon I’ve ever seen, and I don’t remember ever seeing it in the theater. (Which makes sense, as IMDB tells me it’s from 1959. Wow. I had no idea it was that old.)

A very underappreciated Disney flick & Madam Mim

29 Aug

On my Google homepage, one of my widgets gives me a Disney character of the day (we all know it’s just so I can get a new pic of Donald every week or so).

Today’s character? Oh man, it just tickles me. Remember her?

Remember Madam Mim from “The Sword in the Stone“? Absolutely one of my fav Disney movies of all time, and definitely one of the most under-appreciated ones.

Here’s one of the best scenes from it. I really think this version of Merlin gives Dumbledore a run for his Best Wizard Ever money.

‘Something Borrowed’ was good!

26 May

Last week, I took myself on a date to see “Something Borrowed.” I have a love/hate relationship with chick flicks. I love them, but I hate it when they blow. And they often blow.

“Something Borrowed” did not blow! There were a handful of the cliches that make me want to stab the story’s writer, but the goodness more than made up for the stabby parts.

I’ve taken the job of mapping out the pros and cons. These are full of spoilers. If you care, kindly browse elsewhere. (May I suggest my Etsy shop? Ha, couldn’t help myself.)

From left: Jon Krasinski as Ethan, Ginnifer Goodwin as Rachel, Kate Hudson as Darcy and Colin Egglesfield as Dex

The basic plot, in case you’d missed it: Rachel and Darcy have been bffs 4ever & ever. Darcy is about to marry Dex. Problem: Rachel is hugely, massively in love with Dex, and she has been since law school. She mentions this law-school crush to Dex, who had been stupidly oblivious, and the two sleep together. Now: Does Dex break up with Darcy? Does Rachel tell her best friend what she’s done? Shenanigans ensue. The plot sounds atrocious, I know. But I swear, it was good!!)

The goodness

  • Often, when a main character is being an idiot, there is no one on screen to tell her off as we wish we could. “Something Borrowed” has that character! Ethan is a friend who has watched this entire Dex saga unfold, back from the days when Dex and Rachel were just law students. As a viewer, you want to scream at Rachel to get her head out of her ass and make a decision, but theater owners frown on it when audience members shout “ass” too loudly. Ethan, bless his heart, has this conversation for us. I don’t remember if he says “ass.”
  • Darcy is not just a bitch with a capital B. Yes, she’s loud and obnoxious and selfish. She’s a piece of all of us and a piece of all our best friends and a piece of all the girls we hated growing up. But she’s sweet. She adores Rachel. And Darcy might seem to use her friend, but it’s more because Rachel allows Darcy to act this way. Darcy is not actually heartless, especially when it comes to her friend. When it comes to guys, that’s something else entirely. But not with Rachel.
  • That girl from “How I Met Your Mother”! Remember when Ted meets “Buttercup,” aka Victoria, at a friend’s wedding? IMDB tells me this gal is Ashley Williams, and she’s adorable. In “Something Borrowed,” she’s a hot mess. Her crush on Ethan is friggin’ hilarious.
  • The resolution. I adore that pregnancy agrees with Darcy. I love that she’s strong enough to stay away from Rachel for that long. Because Rachel, in her meekness and inability to tell Dex how she feels from the very start, is a shitty, shitty friend. The entire situation could have been avoided if Rachel did not suck so enormously.

The stabby parts

  • The main character sucks. I absolutely cannot relate to a woman who tells her best friend to date the man she loves. Flat out tells her to do this. No. You suck. You’re not a martyr; you’re a moron.
  • Did Ethan really need to be in love with Rachel? No, he did not. Stupid. Let them be friends.
  • Dex. Everything about Dex sux, so badly, that it’s necessary to misspell “sucks” to closer match his name. He is whining, unsure of himself and hugely, enormously stupid. When you’re in love with a gal? And her best friend hits on you? You don’t flirt back. And when you become engaged to the friend? You don’t continue to hold a flame for the original friend. That engagement, at that point, is called “bad decision making.” And it makes you look like an idiot.

It might seem that “the main character sucks” is a reason in and of itself to stay away from a flick. The thing is? You kind of find yourself liking Rachel anyway. This is probably thanks to Ginnifer Goodwin. Ginnifer Goodwin is what you would get if you mixed fairy dust, unicorn hairs and your grandmother’s lemonade in a blow-up swimming pool on a sweet summer day.

Your turn: Did you see “Something Borrowed”? What did you think?

Quoted and noted: Bill Maher

21 Apr

I had to share this quote because it made me laugh aloud.

“Jefferson would turn over in his slave if he knew we had tens of thousands of troops on bases in Germany, Japan and Korea — wars that we won 50, 60 years ago. It’s a concept we would never tolerate in reverse, by the way. If there were 20,000 armed Guatemalans on a military base in San Bernadino, Lou Dobbs would become a suicide bomber.” ~ Bill Maher, Rolling Stone, April 28, 2011

I’m not really sure what I think of Maher —  he spoke at Kent State my freshman or sophomore year, not a year after 9/11. He was on a panel with a bunch of professors, including a few Muslims. He cut off EVERY other panel member so often, I toyed with leaving because it wasn’t a panel discussion so much as an “I am Bill Maher” discussion. (I hate it when people don’t let you finish a thought; it’s why I think Oprah is icky.)

That being said, I enjoyed “Religulous” (except for the end — that was weird), and, of course, this quote.

Quoted and noted: On body image

23 Jan

“Yancy, would you rather eat celery or brownies?”

“What is that? A trick question?”

“Exactly. Then you’ll just date guys who like brownies.” ~Slumber Party

When you cancel your cable, finding a movie on a Sunday afternoon to have on in the background while you  make jewelry gets more difficult. I’m watching the teeny bopper “Slumber Party.” I’ve been rolling my eyes at it until one friend said this to another after she lamented that no boys waved at her because she was fat. I kind of love that advice.

Quoted and noted: In which I vent about a pet peeve

13 Jan

“Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious.” ~ Peter Ustinov

A rewording of one of my favorite all-time quotes: “Many a truth are told in jest.”

I think these simple facts are why I’m not a huge fan of teasing, and why I get so annoyed with me when I find myself teasing someone.

More often than not, when  someone is “just joking” or “just being sarcastic,” he or she is actually “just telling you the truth.” It’s like people think they can disguise being a turd with humor when, in reality, they’re just being an unfunny turd.

Examples:

  • Poking fun of someone because of his or her age, whether it’s “Oh, you’re older than me, haha!” or “Aw, but you’re just a baby!” One is rude; one is demeaning. What’s the point, if not to worry about getting old yourself, in the former, or worrying that you’re already old, in the latter? And don’t get me started about people who freak out about having another birthday. It’s better than the alternative, no?
  • Poking fun of someone because of his or her tastes. I have been made fun of for my taste in movies and music since high school. I don’t make apologies for it — why on earth should someone apologize for something she likes? — and I don’t understand the point. People have tastes, which are different. This is why drama AND comedy AND Jackass exists. This is why R&B AND classic rock AND spoken word slam poetry exists. I like George Michael AND Boyz II Men AND Bright Eyes. I like  Stephen King AND John Steinbeck AND “The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants” series. Leave me the frick alone!

I don't like Rihanna. I think her music is overrated, an opinion that was sealed when I heard "Umbrella" for the first time and legitimately thought the DJ's file was skipping. But why on earth would I care that you like her?

  • Poking fun of someone because of the food he or she likes. Never happened to me, thank God, because I’d consider throwing said food in the person’s judgmental little face. But a friend of mine has lamented this, and I don’t remotely understand it.

I am not currently undergoing any of the above-mentioned barrages. Honestly, I’d never write this if I were; I’d be too afraid of singling people out, and I don’t ever like to be that girl. So when it happens, I try to keep my mouth shut and simply roll my mental eyes.

What are you teased for? When people are “just joking!” are you ever genuinely laughing? Or am I the one who’s just being a turd?

15 fictional characters I love

8 Jan

This is actually a Facebook note going around, but I liked it enough that I figured it’d be a better blog post.

The rules: List 15 fictional characters (television, films, plays, books) who’ve influenced you and that will always stick with you, and don’t take too long to think about it. List the first 15 you can recall in no more than 15 minutes.

Who would be on your list? Even if you don’t come up with 15, I’m curious to see the ones that do come to mind quickly.

1. Harry Potter
2. Jake Chambers (King’s The Dark Tower series)
3. Boo (Monster’s Inc.)
4. Wall-E
5. Alan Shore/Denny Crane (If you’ve seen Boston Legal, you know why this constitutes one entry.)
6. Annie Wilkes (“Misery”)
7. Donald Duck

This is much harder than I thought it’d be. I’m an avid reader, but 1) I have the memory of an Alzheimer’s patient, and I think if a character really belongs on this list, I shouldn’t have to look up that character’s name — I remember details! Just not names … and 2) Aside from Stephen King, I most love to read memoirs. They’re not exactly fictional. OK, eight more.

8. Regan (“The Exorcist”)
9. Henry Drummond (“Inherit the Wind”)
10. Maximus (“Gladiator”)
11. Heathcliff Huxtable

12. Ted Brautigan (“Hearts in Atlantis”)
13.  Neville Longbottom (Potter)
14. Rose of Sharon (“Grapes of Wrath”)
15. Stacey McGill (Baby-sitters Club)

There you have it. Fifteen characters that have stuck in my mind for better or for worse. Who are yours?

Go see ‘Eat Pray Love’

20 Aug

When I read “Eat, Pray, Love” a few years ago, the book solidified my determination to visit Italy with a girl friend in my 20s.

When I saw “Eat Pray Love” a few days ago, the movie created a new determination: I want to go to Bali with the beau. I got home from my girldate, called him and said, “You need to take me to Bali. They have terrorists, so it’s super cheap.” I really know how to sell a vacation.

Reader, meet Bali. Bali, reader.

I went into the flick expecting to like it. Not only was the book incredibly well done, but all the terrible movie reviews couldn’t actually point out what made the movie so terrible. They threw out words like “navel-gazing” a lot, but I think that’s just code for “She’s richer than I am, and I wish I could afford to take a year and travel the world.”

I see a very distinct difference between a good movie and an enjoyable one.

  • The ideal movie will be both well done and enjoyable, but we can’t all be “The Godfather.”
  • Sometimes, we get well done but forget to make the flick entertaining. I’ve never seen it, but despite the fact that it won the best picture and eight other Oscars, I hear “The English Patient” was mind-numbing.
  • Or we forget to make the movie worth any bit of entertainment or talent: “The Informant” might be the worst movie I’ve ever had the displeasure of sitting through — wildly, mind-numbingly boring. I left the theater caring so very little for the characters, if they had been crumbled in the theater hallway being eaten by a pack of rabid parrots, I wouldn’t have minded.

That leaves the fourth category: Movies that won’t be nominated for any awards, but no one cares because they’re so much fun. “Eat Pray Love” certainly is on the better end of this category. Aside from good performances and breath-taking scenery, the movie is a joy to watch. Why?

  1. Julia Roberts. In every bad review I’ve read, no one can deny her talent or likability.  America’s sweetheart indeed.
  2. Javier Bardem. He’s what a man should be: handsome, rugged, hesitant and weepy when his grown son has to leave at the end of a visit. His only flaw? In one scene when he and Roberts’ Liz Gilbert are reading, he puts on music and takes her hands to dance. First, he removes the book from her grasp. And he … dog ears … a page. ((shudder)) BOOK MARKS, MAN.
  3. The scenery. I love to travel. I want to see everything. Gilbert’s time in Bali, surprisingly, made for the loveliest scenes to watch. Bali has beautiful beaches, lovely apartments and people you want to sit and drink coffee with.

Have you seen it yet? Tell me what you thought!

‘It’s so fluffy!’

13 Jul

Recently, it’s come to my attention that the best, most innovative, creative and well-written movies are, as of late, all cartoons. This summer has been full of crud. In fact, the two very best movies I’ve seen in theaters in 2010 are “How to Train Your Dragon” and, just this weekend, “Despicable Me.”

Instead of giving all the millions of reasons why you should see the Steve Carell-led flick, I’m going to give you this two-second clip. I’ve watched it maybe two dozen times. Best three words in cinema this year.

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