WHY MR. JACKSON?

So this weekend I thought to take the family to catch the new Hobbit flick in Tokyo. To my surprise, it is not here.

A quick look on the interweb found the opening dates of the Hobbit across the world. It is EVERYWHERE in December except for ….. Japan. Latvia .. Columbia … Estonia … United Arab Emirates .. Egypt .. no problem.

Japan? No. It opens here a few weeks before the DVD comes out. Why? No idea.

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I REMEMBER TRON DIFFERENTLY

With the TRON sequel out I decided to pull out an old copy of the original 1982 movie. I then applied a lot of persuasion to the family to join me to watch the flick, promising that we could watch 20 minutes and if it is no good, turn it off. They were very hesitant, as we have tried to watch a few movies that I fondly remember from my youth as great movies – only to realize that movies from the 80’s are pretty bad.

About 15 minutes into TRON, my son looked at me and said ‘Dad, this movie stinks’. Unfortunately, he was right. The concept and special effects were revolutionary for the time, but the acting is wooden and the story is pretty bad. I had to laugh at the lead female character, who’s only other notable performance I could recall was in Caddy Shack.

That being said, it was interesting explaining the concept of an arcade to the boys and how it was the ‘consumer’ of my paper route money and every quarter I could scrounge.

At least I got one right this year. The boys loved Monty Python and the Holy Grail. I wonder what they would think about Red Dawn?

BROWNCOATS

Read an interesting article on Firefly and how there is this group of people out there that call themselves browncoats, still working to resurrect the show.

If you have not seen the show and like sci-fi, it is a great show. Worth buying the DVD. Whatever you do, don’t want the Serenity movie before watching the show. It ruins it – as the movie is ‘the ending’.

Which brings me to my point. I loved the show. Would love to see it go on. But guys, the movie answered everything. It is over …. Sorry guys.

THE THEATRE

Over the last few months I have attended a bevy of shows, simple reviews as follows:Radio City Christmas Spectacular:  We ordered these tickets over a year ago. The person in charge of ordering the family tickets called us up last December 5th just before we headed to Toronto to tell us ‘STOP! I just looked at the tickets and they are for 2006’, making this show a long time coming. Billed as ‘America’s most beloved holiday theatrical’, it lived up to the claim.  It is filled with singing (As my wife called it – a more professional Up With People), dancing and the Rockettes (who are quite the dancers but I will admit that 2 of their dancing can-can  (sp) lines was enough).

The finale was refreshing. After a show filled with Santa and holiday fun, the nativity story was told in a very solemn manner with all of the trappings (Live camels, sheep … every facet was complete). Very powerful. It is nice to see that in our culture where the word Christmas is becoming verboten, that one show retains the true meaning. As a funny aside, I can remember when my son was in Grade 1 and the teacher asked ‘What is the true meaning of Christmas?’.  She was surprised when he said ‘It is when Jesus was born’.

A great family show. Worth waiting a year for (LOL).

Spamalot:  We went with friends and our expectations of this show were as follows ‘I expect to laugh my a$$ off for the next 2 hours”. We were not disappointed. There are two types of people in this world, people who love Monty Python and people who hate Monty Python. I have never met someone who said ‘I kind of like it’. It is not that type of humour. Well, if you love Python, then you will love this show. The play is adapted from Monty Python and the Holy Grail(Which my brother and I watched at least 50 times) but has a range of great adaptations (The Finland opening had me cheering from the start and make sure you read the program (Moose trainers and all!)). Expect to see all your favourite scenes: The black knight, Lancelot storming the castle to save the ‘Damsel’, the dialogue between Arthur and the peasant who wants to understand how Arthur became king when he ‘did not vote for him’ and of course .. the killer bunny.

Raving praises for this show. I would see it again, in a heartbeat.

Wicked: I will admit, I grow weary when watching a musical .. and by the end, I was done with the signing. But, it is a great play. It is the story of the wicked witch of the west, from her perspective. I will not ruin the story, which is an adaptation of the book Wickedwhich takes the Wizard of Oz and turns it on it’s head. The play is full of social commentary, the most powerful being how the perception of evil can twist what is really evil. I always knew that the Wizard was a fascist!

In the end, I would suggest that it is a must see. A great story, with just a little too much singing (smile).

 

 

Lucky for me .. 3 shows, all excellent in very different ways.  

 

THANK YOU FOR SMOKING

I watched a great movie the other day Thank You for Smoking” . All about a lobbyist for the Tobacco Industry. Truly a great movie on sales, morals and the slippery slope. I think I know this guy. Pay close attention to his rationalization and the way he spins conversations. Truly mesmerizing to watch (And quite funny). Five out of five stars.

 

A few classic quotes:

Joey Naylor: Dad, why is the American government the best government?
Nick Naylor: Because of our endless appeals system.

Speaking to his son’s class on his job as a lobbyist:

Kid #3: My Mommy says smoking kills.
Nick Naylor: Oh, is your Mommy a doctor?
Kid #3: No.

Nick Naylor: A scientific researcher of some kind?
Kid #3: No.
Nick Naylor: Well then she’s hardly a credible expert, is she?

Heather Holloway: My other interviews have pinned you as a mass murderer, blood sucker, pimp, profiteer and my personal favorite, yuppie Mephistopheles.

(Definition of Mephistopheles: Mephistopheles (also Mephisto, Mephistophilus, Mephist, Murphy, Mephy, Murphy Stoffelis, Mephistophilis, Mephostophiles, Mephostophiel, and Mephisophilus) is a name given to one of the chief demons of Christian mythology that figure in European literary traditions. While the name is frequently used as an alternative form of Satan or the Devil, it evolved during the Renaissance; the name Mephistopheles makes no appearance in the Bible.)

 

WHAT IS YOUR FIRST MEMORY? Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead (archive)

I finally purchased on of my favorite movies on DVD: Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead (1990). The movie follows the lives of two minor characters as the flit in and out of scenes during the play Hamlet. It is an incredibly witty movie with a great cast: Richard Dryfus, Gary Oldman and Tim Roth.
I have two favorite scenes (Although, the movie (Which was a play) is full of great scenes .. BUT BE WARNED: if you are looking for a Mr. Bean type of slapstick evening, pass now. This movie/play is monty pythonish – you must listen very closely. Plus, don’t get me started on Mr. Bean. Rowan may have become famous because of it, but after watching his brilliant early work as Black Adder .. I could not stomach the dumb-downed humour. The first scene I love is this …
Guildenstern: What’s the first thing you remember?
Rosencrantz: [thinks] No, it’s no good. It was a long time ago.
Guildenstern: No, you don’t take my meaning. What’s the first thing you remember after all the things you’ve forgotten?
Rosencrantz: Oh, I see… I’ve forgotten the question.
It is a very interesting question – and exercise. My best recollection of a first memory is crying as I walked down the hill to catch the bus, on my own, during my first week of kindergarten. I did not want to go (Everyone else got to stay home).
The second, when they play the game ‘Questions’:
Guildenstern: Whose serve?
Rosencrantz: Err…
Guildenstern: Hesitation! Love… one.
Rosencrantz: Whose go?
Guildenstern: Why?
Rosencrantz: Why not?
Guildenstern: What for?
Rosencrantz: Foul! No synonyms! One… all.
Guildenstern: What in God’s name is going on?
Rosencrantz: Foul! No rhetoric! Two… one.
Guildenstern: What does it all add up to?
Rosencrantz: Can’t you guess?
Guildenstern: Were you addressing me?
Rosencrantz: Is there anyone else?
Guildenstern: Who?
Rosencrantz: How would I know?
Guildenstern: Why do you ask?
Rosencrantz: Are you serious?
Guildenstern: Was that rhetoric?
Rosencrantz: No.
Guildenstern: Statement! Two all. Game point.
For the review: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0100519/. A worth addition to the DVD collection.
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