Saturday, August 30, 2014

31 Days of #Film - Day 30: The " #smartest" film you've seen

A lot of movie viewers claim this movie is just a mixture of Forrest Gump and Castaway - it's easy to think that considering the star of all three films is Tom Hanks, but it's so much more! The Terminal was Spielberg's jaunt into a "date night" movie, but with his classic themes of father-son bond and, of course, biopic (the story is loosely based on a real story).

This film has so much charm and heart that it's easily one of my favorite Spielberg films. The casting of Tom Hanks as Viktor Navorski is what makes this movie work. He is the perfect sympathetic character. Stanley Tucci as the stories villain is also fantastic in his role (I love him, he can play so many different characters so well). The merry band of misfits that Navorski encounters in his 9 months in the terminal round out the film in a humorous and touching way.

I remember seeing this movie twice in one day - first with my best friend Erin, and then later that night with my dad as a father-daughter date. It charmed me both times.

It doesn't talk down to the audience, and a lot of the humor is subtle in a look or gesture of the actor. It's a classic Spielberg flick. Not sure it's the "smartest" I've ever seen, but it's definitely the one that's stuck with me most.

"Do you have an appointment?"

Friday, August 29, 2014

Kenai Animal Shelter Portraits - August 27

Things are busy here, so I'm backlogged on my blogging. But I'm not complaining. This is the most I've ever blogged in all the years I've been on blogger so yay! And some of the content I've written I'm actually proud of. Haven't been able to say that really in a while!

Anyway, Kassy and I braved the rain to take photos of the dogs and kitties at the Kenai Animal Shelter on Wednesday. They've got some great animals, as well as a lot of familiar faces (which makes me sad, they're all great! why don't they have forever homes?!).

31 Days of Film - Day 29: A film that you will never tire of

I. Love. This. Movie. It's amazing. Even after so many viewings that I've lost count I still laugh hard watching this movie. I quote it more than I probably should.

In college I watched this movie whenever I had a bad day - it wasn't the humor that made my day better... it was the idea that the whole world was blowing up. My aunt always knew when I was mad at the world because I was cheering on the aliens.

I've been known to watch this movie more than once in a single day. I've marathon-ed a whole weekend of just this movie. Normally I'm sick as a dog and too tired/lazy to get up and switch out the movie - but that's a minor detail.

Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum were such an unlikely pair, but it worked. Jeff is quirky... and Will is a dork. In Smith's first major motion picture he proved that he had the chops to be more than a teen demographic sitcom star. Bill Pullman was the best choice ever for a president. And Randy Quaid always plays crazy (because he IS crazy) to perfection.

Great cast, fun story, just a great sci-fi flick.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

31 Days of Film - Day 28: The "perfect" date movie

Not that I've ever gone on a date night to the movies (have to have a date to go on a date), but one of my favorite "romantic" type films (of which I don't like many) is "The Holiday". I LOVE this movie, and while it does happen around Christmas time, it's a movie worth watching year round. The four main characters are so adorable that you can't help but love the movie.

Kate Winslet's character being my favorite, I feel a connection to the character - I understand her. Even though our life experiences are no where near alike a lot of her personality I see in my own. Cameron Diaz is pleasant in the film as well, and I'm not a fan of hers (find her a tad overrated), her character is a sympathetic one from the onset when we meet her douchebag of an ex-boyfriend. Jude Law and Jack Black as the ladies' unexpected love interests make the movie sing.

And I'm not a fan girl of either of them, though if they played characters like the ones they have in this movie all the time I probably would. This movie proves there are good guys out there, you just have to be willing to see past the "good friend" stage.

Eli Wallach (RIP!) is also the charming neighbor that Kate's character befriends. He brings a charm and warmth that the movie thrives on. You can't not love him. It's a beautiful friendship. I need an "Arthur" in my life.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

31 Days of Film - Day 27: A film from your childhood

Sleeping Beauty is the first movie I ever remember being obsessed with. I had it on VHS and wore that sucker out. I loved (and still do) everything about it. Samson was an awesome horse, Prince Phillip dashing, Aurora beautiful... the fairies were hilarious and Maleficent is the most awesome villain EVER. She turns into a DRAGON!

I loved the sounds that Samson's hooves made on the cobblestone. How he dumped Phillip into the water. I loved how Maleficent flew into her rages, and how she mocked Phillip in the dungeon.

That Merryweather, like me, hated pink and wanted the dress to be blue. And I laughed at how stupid Flora was trying to make a cake. (I have been known to quote her "what's a tsp" while in the kitchen.)

I've had a crush on Prince Phillip since age three. He's my favorite prince of all time (which is why I'm always so bummed that Once Upon A Time doesn't give him a good storyline... so much potential!).

And really I love everything about Maleficent. She is just so... deliciously evil. And she turns into a Dragon... that makes her pretty much the most awesome thing ever. The movie starring Angelina Jolie does not do the mistress of all evil justice. They wimpified her.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Summer days driftin' away...

Summer is winding down here on the Kenai Peninsula... and, once again, I did a poor job of documenting this time of year. I wish I had a better excuse, but the truth is I'm lazy... and broke... and my car is not reliable... so I didn't get out much.

But, the other day I did go out and take some pictures... just as the fog decided to roll in. So the photoshoot was short lived. I was shooting some stuff for our church's website (which I am webmaster of) so they were shot on the church grounds... but I actually got a little creative in a few...

Can't believe fall is pretty much upon us already! Only 19 days till Disneyland!

31 Days of Film - Day 26: The film that should never have had a sequel

Just about every Disney animated film should not have a sequel - the only exception I can think of is Lilo & Stitch (I love the second film, though I can't watch it after losing Yuka last year).

I just don't understand why Disney thinks this is a good idea. Okay, I get that they're a business and it's an easy buck - but most of these films are total throw aways! They have no real quality of storytelling, characters, or animation. They are cheaply made from start to finish. It's not just disappointing, it's disheartening.

The Walt Disney name deserves better.

I know some of my fellow Disnerds will disagree, but honestly I just don't get how they can ignore the quality factor.

Monday, August 25, 2014

31 Days of Film - Day 25: Film that makes you want to be a filmmaker

I was 10 when I saw Jurassic Park for the first time. Not in theaters, but on a big screen TV at my dad's friend's house and he had surround sound. That movie was epic. Dinosaurs came to life (they were scary man eating dinosaurs, but they were still dinosaurs). My imagination was in hyperdrive.

When in Jr. High I thought it'd be awesome to work for Lucasfilm and do the special effects for Star Wars or other films like it. But by the time I hit High School I realized that the computer graphics took a lot of science and math knowledge and those are two subjects I struggled with. It was around this time I really started putting two and two together and realized I love putting creative projects together. I love telling stories and capturing stories...

And I was getting really fangirly about Spielberg films. I was beginning to pay more attention to the credits and the people behind the film, not the ones starring in them.

Jurassic Park still sparks my imagination and is the movie that always makes me want to go back and try and get that dream of becoming a film director. I want to have an epic film series. I want to have dinosaurs or something else HUGE. I want to tell a story that generations will continue to pop into their media players and enjoy them again and again.

I want to be a director like Steven Spielberg!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

31 Days of Film - Day 24: Your favorite "guilty pleasure" film...

Does Mr. & Mrs. Smith count as a guilty pleasure? I suppose it depends on what makes one feel guilty? I can't think of a single movie I own or watch that make me feel guilty about something... now if we're talking TV I have one (Terriers... hey it's been a while since I did a Michael Raymond-James shout out... oh, wait... I did a review about a movie he's in two days ago... whoops.)

I was not a fan of Brad Pitt's when it was popular to be a fan - story of my life, really. I'd never been a fan of Angelina Jolie's either. I just felt both were very overrated as actors (and as hotties) and so I didn't pay much attention. For the record, both are very good at their job, but I wouldn't say I'm a fangirl of either. Still this movie looked interesting and friends wanted to see it in theaters so I tagged along.

Jolie and Pitt are a pretty awesome duo. They definitely had chemistry (this IS the movie that destroyed Pitt's marriage to Jennifer Aniston, afterall) and the script was charming. I love the idea of two assassins being unaware that they married their main rival and are now tasked with killing the other.

Who knew paid murder could be so sexy?!

The movie wouldn't have done as well, I think, if they'd played it straight on serious. That it's really in many ways a comedy is what makes it work. Otherwise they could've taken it the soft porn route (like the coming attraction of "50 Shades Of Grey" which I have no desire of ever seeing), and I wouldn't be gushing about the film had it gone that way. Granted there is sexual content in the film, but it's definitely of the PG-13 variety.

I guess I feel guilty liking it because of all the "controversy" and tabloid fodder than surrounded it... so that's my guilty pleasure...

Saturday, August 23, 2014

31 Days of Film - Day 23: Funniest Film you've ever seen

National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation starring Chevy Chase. This movie is a classic Holiday film, and is timeless. It's one of the many movies I can quote backwards and forwards (and I often use it in every day conversation), and yet I laugh just as hard as I did the first time I saw the film when we watch it.

Tradition with my aunt is we watch it the night of Thanksgiving after dinner is over, people are gone, and the football is over. We get out the boxes of Christmas stuff, grab another slice of pie, and pop the movie in. And laugh.

It's one of the many things I miss with my aunt living in California these days - it's just not the same without her. My parents aren't about getting Christmas out in November... and they don't appreciate Christmas Vacation like my aunt and I do. Sure they laugh here and there, but they'd rather watch Elf or A Christmas Story. Gag me.

What makes this movie so funny is - we've all had that Christmas/Family function. We relate SO WELL to the film. We recognize ourselves and our family members in the zany cast of characters... and we're so thankful that Cousin Eddie hasn't come around our place in decades.

I'm half tempted to throw this movie on right now (hey, it's closer to Christmas than it's not!) but it'll just make me miss my Aunt Judy even more than I already always do.