God help thee, poor monkey. - Macbeth

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Movie Review: Meet the Robinsons

Okay, I know what you're thinking. "Not another cutsie animated movie." I have to admit, I didn't expect much from this movie. I mean, I ENJOY cutsie animated movies, but the plot lines and gags get a bit old after a while. However, this movie was much better than I expected. The jokes were fresh, and the message was very sweet. I mean, yeah, it was kind of predictable, but it was also sweet and highly entertaining. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Now, if you're a die-hard animated movie hater (like certain PARENTS I could mention), you probably won't like it, but if you occasionally enjoy a cute, animated film, I would strongly recommend this one.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Back to Work

So Thanksgiving is over, and now it's back to school for me. Not much has changed in the past week. My roommate downloaded new music but since she only listens to R&B, it all basically sounds exactly the same as the music that she listened to before. Luckily I got a new pair of headphones which are louder than my old pair, so I am successfully drowning out her music with my own. I got new music as well, NOT in the same genre that I had before...er...well, since I listen to many genres of music, that's not exactly true. Let's just say that it doesn't all sound the same. I got some new Enter the Haggis (or older ETH, I should say), which is exciting. They are definitely one of my favorite bands of all time. I also followed Brian's advice and downloaded some Radiohead and Leonard Cohen. Can you tell I'm a fan? :-P Other than that, my week at home was pretty uneventful. We have a new dog, Molly, and she's a sweetheart, if a little high strung. It's nice to be back at school in my regular routine, but I'm not looking forward to the school work. It was nice to have a break.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Home for the Holidays!

Tonight I'm going to get on a train, and I will get home tomorrow afternoon. Yay! I am looking forward to eating a home cooked meal (mac & cheese, mommy?), seeing my friends and family, getting my Enter the Haggis tshirt from my dad (signed by the band!), and, most of all, NOT HAVING TO LISTEN TO MY ROOMMATE'S MUSIC FOR A WEEK! I am so sick of R&B, it's not even funny. Finally, some music variation (you see, even if I put on my headphones and listen to my music, I can still hear hers, and it ruins it). Other than that, we get along quite well, but I'm seriously hoping that she's going to get some new music over break. If I have to hear her 20 favorite songs ever again, I'm going to go crazy. Okay, my rant is done now.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Pushing Daisies

Possibly the cutest, wittiest show on television right now, "Pushing Daisies" is a must see. It's playing on ABC and stars Lee Pace, Anna Friel ("Goal!"), Kristin Chenowith ("Wicked"), and Ellen Greene ("Little Shop of Horrors"). The basic idea is that Ned can touch dead people and bring them back to life, but if he leaves them alive for more than a minute something else has to die to take their place. Also, if he touches them again, they are dead forever and nothing can bring them back. Ned works with Private Investigator Emerson Cod to solve murders (by asking the victims who killed them) and collect the reward. One of the murders Ned has to solve is the murder of his childhood sweetheart, but once he wakes her up, he can't bring himself to make her dead again. Although they are in love, he is unable to touch her or she will be dead forever, which causes some complications in their relationship. This may sound lame or somewhat morbid, but it is actually a very clever show. The dialogue is made up of silly and witty banter, and there are many little digs at society (such as the designer of a new, eco-friendly car who drives a Hummer). Not only that, but the ridiculous coincidences, bright colors, and clever jokes keep the show from turning into a morbid and horrifying crime show. I would strongly recommend checking it out, even if you think that you won't like it. One of my friends was skeptical, but now she's hooked. Go figure. It's even child friendly.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

It's all about me

So my mommy tagged me for a Meme. I guess I'm supposed to tell you 10 Random Things About Me. And, honestly, who WOULDN'T want to know more about me? :-P So, here goes:

1. My favorite animal is a raccoon. There was a family living under the deck at my grandparents' old house, and I used to watch them for hours. My grandma fed them, and they would come right up to the glass doors if they didn't know you were watching them. It was so cool.

2. I used to be a huge Lord of the Rings geek (and still am, secretly). I can tell you just about anything about the movies and the books. So, if you have a question about LOTR, you know who to ask. :-)

3. My two favorite places to be are doing theater or at a Quaker Teen Retreat (which I am, sadly, too old for now).

4. I have a major fear of sharks. Seriously, I can't even watch kids movies with underwater attacks without freaking out.

5. I HATE eggs. I think they're the most disgusting food on the planet. I don't mind them as ingredients in cakes and stuff, but any kind of eggy food (scrambled eggs, omelets, quiche, etc.) makes me feel sick. Even the smell of them makes me sick.

6. My guilty pleasure is chick lit/flicks. I love sappy, romantic movies and books, no matter how awful they are. Well... there is such a thing as too awful to stand, but very rarely do I find something like that.

7. I love to sing.

8. I used to want to be a Marine Biologist (what happened, you ask? Well, the shark phobia didn't help. Plus I hated science in high school and realized that the only reason I wanted to be a Marine Biologist was so I could play with dolphins. I'm more of an English/Arts person than a science/math person anyway)

9. I listen to all kinds of music, but I especially like soft rock. You know, stuff I can sing along with.

10. I know just about everything about movies, and if I don't know something, I will be on imdb within 5 minutes to look it up.

Um... I tag... crayons and Dr. Monkey von Monkerstein

Boo sundays!

It's cold, it's rainy, I'm sick, and I have two exams tomorrow. Seriously, Sundays suck. (Alliteration. Go me! :-P) It's probably the most depressing day of the week. I mean, the weekend's over, and it's usually gray come winter time. I don't like Sundays. Nope. Not at all. Especially not when I have a cold. And two tests the next day. :-(

Movie Review: Half Nelson

First off, let me say that THIS IS NOT YOUR ORDINARY TEACHER MOVIE. (You hear that, Mom? :-P) It is not, I repeat, NOT, about a rich white teacher whose revolutionary and controversial teaching style changes the lives of his poor, inner city students. If you want to see a movie like that, go watch "Freedom Writers" or something.
However, if you are looking for a bittersweet movie about real people with real problems and the connections that they develop, then this movie is for you. It's about the relationship that cocaine addict teacher Dan Dunn develops with one of his students and how they take care of one another. It's an amazing movie, and Ryan Gosling definitely deserved the Oscar nomination (although I still maintain that the award was rightfully awarded to Forrest Whittaker). Anyway, this movie is fantastic. The storyline is very realistic and easy to relate to (on some level), and the camera work is PHENOMENAL. I really enjoyed watching it. Plus it has a lot of good political comments in it. Apart from the drug addiction, Ryan Gosling's character reminds me of some of the teachers that I had growing up. My mom has a problem with movies that show how one teacher is going against the grain and teaching students who otherwise didn't want to learn because she says that there are tons of teachers doing that every day. This movie doesn't do that. It's more about how everyone has problems and we need to reach out to one another or we won't survive. I don't want to give anything else away, but you should really go out and rent this movie. Note: It's not appropriate for children.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Movie Review: The Shawshank Redemption

So, it turns out that a couple of my friends have never seen "The Shawshank Redemption." The rest of us were shocked, so we all watched it together last night. What a great movie. This was my second time seeing it, and it was just as good as, if not better than, the first time. Seriously, that movie is made of amazing quotes and wonderful acting. As my friend Zack said, "Morgan Freeman is God." (Get it? :-P) But seriously, he's an amazing actor, as is Tim Robbins. They both did a fantastic job in this movie, and the story itself is just phenomenal. (Why does Stephen King waste his time writing horror stories when he could be writing more stuff like this?) It's a heartbreaking movie, especially the whole thing with Tommy Williams. It makes me want to cry every time. And Brooks? (On a random side note, does anyone else think that Brooks looks a little like Hoggle from "Labyrinth", or is it just me?) Anyway, this is probably one of the best movies I've ever seen, and if you haven't seen it, you are seriously missing out. So go out and rent "The Shawshank Redemption." ...Only maybe don't watch it if you're just in the mood for something light and entertaining. This is for one of those times when you want to see something incredible.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Movie Review: The Usual Suspects

Today in my film analysis class, we watched "The Usual Suspects." It's a 1995 crime drama with a twist, starring Kevin Spacey, Gabriel Byrne, and Benicio Del Toro. I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was hilarious and engaging. The banter and one liners were very witty. I have to say, I was slightly disappointed with the twist, because I called it. Although it made me feel great about myself that I had figured out this supposedly impossibly surprising twist, I felt a little let down. I mean, it's supposed to catch you completely unawares, but I figured it out pretty early on. I won't give anything away, but it's something to keep your eyes open for should you choose to watch it. All in all, it was a great movie. A little bloody, but very entertaining. I highly recommend checking it out.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Whale Rider

Last night I had the sudden urge to watch the movie "Whale Rider" because I hadn't seen it in over a year. It's such a beautiful movie, and I highly recommend that anyone who hasn't seen it go out and rent it. It's worth it. However, I think it's even more important that everyone read the book. It is so much more detailed and beautiful than the movie. That's the nature of these things. You can't fit everything into a movie, so some important things get cut. In this case, it is Kahu's uncle Rawiri's trip to Australia and Papua New Guinea, which opens his eyes to racism and shows him what the world is really like. (For those who have seen the movie, in the book the main character, Paikea, is actually named Kahu. Both Paikea and Kahutia Te Rangi were names for the ancient Whale Rider). The characters are very different in the movie, too. In the book, Nanny Flowers, Kahu's grandmother, is more of a comical character, and Rawiri is the leader of a biker gang. As for Kahu's grandfather, Koro, he is much more indifferent to her in the book. In the movie they excuse his behavior a little bit, but in the book he shows almost no affection to Kahu despite all her efforts to get his attention. It is very sad. All in all, both the book and the movie are very good but, as is often the case, the book is much better. In fact, ever since they made the movie, the book has been permanently added to the curriculum for New Zealand schools. How cool is that? I really want to read the book, but sadly, I don't have a copy here. My mom's best friend's copy is sitting on my bookshelf at home (you should probably give that back to her, mom), and I don't want to bring it here. I found a copy online for $5 which I am considering ordering, but I want to think it over before I buy anything. Money is tight in college, after all. Still, I can spare $5, right? Haha. Now go and read! I command you!

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Movie Review: The Hills Have Eyes

So, in the spirit of Halloween, a bunch of people on my floor got together to watch scary movies tonight. Now, I hate scary movies. I've never liked them. I'm a bit of a wimp. Anyway, they told me that they were watching "The Hills Have Eyes" and that I should come and join them. I went with some trepidation (I do not want to have nightmares for the next month), but it turns out they were watching the ORIGINAL movie from 1977. So I decided to sit it out, figuring it couldn't be THAT bad. I was completely right. It was one of the funniest movies I have ever seen. The blood was literally red paint, and the mutant people or whatever they were looked like poor representations of Native Americans. It was quite racist, in fact. Here were these tribal type cannibal crazy people attacking a cute little white family where the children have blond hair and blue eyes. It was pretty ridiculous. Not only that, but the family was soooo dumb. Seriously, they just kept doing one stupid thing after another, and the girl would not shut up. She just screamed and screamed and whimpered and screamed even when she wasn't getting attacked. I mean, okay, yeah, that's pretty emotionally scarring, but do you have to be so loud about it? I'm pretty sure I would just curl up in a corner or something, not scream my lungs out. Especially when there are these mutant people roaming around. I mean, you don't want to give away your location, do you? As I said, the people were really stupid. It was great because the smartest being in the movie was the dog. Seriously, that dog was amazing. It would sneak up behind the mutant people and push them off cliffs and stuff. It even was smart enough to steal one of their massive walkie talkies (yes, the mutants had walkie talkies), and bring it back to the family so they could spy on the mutants. I'm telling you, that was one smart dog. Watching that movie, though, was like watching an episode of Mystery Science Theater or something. It was pretty amazing. The dialog was terrible and the acting was even worse. So, if you want a good laugh, go out and rent this movie. It won't let you down (although it's probably funnier if you watch it with a big group of friends).