Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Review for The Flash “Duet”

When I first learned of a musical crossover I was like heck yeah this is a great idea. I mean if you are a TV network where half of your lineup are shows ripped from DC heroes and have a talent pool that includes Misters Barrowman, Garber and Martin and 2 Glee alumni why not add a 3rd (the wonderful and adorable Darren Criss) and have a musical extravaganza.

This week’s episode of The Flash entitled "Duet" was a lot of fun and in a plot about Barry (The Flash) and Kara (Supergirl) dreaming of being inside a movie musical everything was beautiful. As I watch I felt like the actors were having a fun day on the job. The original songs and those that weren’t were perfectly matched to the story and characters. At one point I felt pure enjoyment for in years passed as I listened to my Rent soundtrack over and over till I memorized it or watched Titanic till I memorized it or watched episode after episode of Torchwood, some of which I have memorized I never thought I would see, in my mind, Tom Collins, Mr. Andrews and Captain Jack Harkness sing one song at the same time and nothing could have been better. You could tell with their voices that Jesse L Martin, Victor Garber and John Barrowman got their start in the theater as they performed to the back roll.

I knew Grant Gustin aka The Flash himself could sing but the tap dancing was a nice surprise.

As for guest star Darren Criss as The Music Meister I have found a new favorite character and would love to see and learn more about him.

The rest of the cast were wonderful and I did not want the hour to end (I will watch it again and again)

Funny, cute and did not disappoint with a perfect song to end another great episode of The Flash

Friday, March 10, 2017

The Vampire Diaries 2009-2017

Although you jumped the shark three seasons ago I still mourn you.

Here is to the Vampires, Witches, Werewolves and humans of Mystic Falls, Virginia.
It all started with a girl named Elena Gilbert (Nina Dobrev), an orphan who was being raised by her Aunt met new guy in town Stefan Salvatore (Paul Wesley). Elena and her friends Bonnie Bennett (Kat Graham), a young up and coming witch and Caroline Forbes (Candice King) were all intrigued buy the new guy and his older brother Damon  (Ian Somerhalder). When Elena found out Stefan was a vampire turned by a women named Kathrine, who looked just like her (aka Elena's doppelganger) during the American Civil War instead of being afraid of him she fell madly in love with him and for 8 years their story would unfold.

A story of love, loss and betrayal. A story with a plethora of characters from all over the supernatural world. There was Jeremy (Steven R McQueen) Elena's younger brother who would die and come back to life only to become a demon hunter. There was Tyler Lockwood (Michael Trevino) who was part of the most prestigious family in Mystic Falls but he would soon find out that being a member of his family wasn't all it was cracked up to be when he accidentally killed someone and unleashed a curse turning him into a werewolf. Matt Donovan the only character that stayed human throughout the series and became sheriff of the town. Enzo (Michael Malarkey) a vampire who fist appeared in 2013 as a "old friend" of Damon's. The Vampire Dairies was the first time we met the Mikealson family-Klaus, Elijah, Rebekah, Cole and Finn who were the original vampires and would go on to have their own series called The Originals which, in my opinion, is a far better series. Finally there was Alaric (Matt Davis) who I have to admit was my favorite character and although he wasn't anything supernatural he was a good man with good principles. He fought alongside and against the rest and was there for any who needed him, in death and life he was the one everyone could count on.

Farewell to The Vampire Dairies-To ALL who came through this crazy fun town you will be missed but will "always and forever" live on in my heart.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Oscar 2017

This year, 2017, marks 20 years since I watched The Academy Awards for the first time and began to take the whole award season seriously. 20 years have gone by since Cuba Gooding Jr told Tom Cruise to “show me the money” and Gooding jumped up on the stage and accepted the Oscar for best supporting actor. I was hooked on the yearly ceremony and decided on that day that I WANTED ONE (Around the same time I started to keep my movie ticket stubs). The following year when Titanic was nominated 14 times (sharing the most nominated films honor with Ben-Hur and this year’s La La Land) I saw the film 3 times in theaters (and although movies are on digital and TV a couple of months after they hit theaters these days, I still like going to one) and enjoyed every minute of the 3 hour film. In the same year I watched the other 4 nominated films (As Good as it Gets, The Full Monty, Good Will Hunting and L.A. Confidential) before the telecast aired. Although I am not any closer to being nominated and winning today as I was back then I still want an Oscar and won’t be giving up on the dream anytime soon.

This year I have seen two of the nominated films La La Land starring the wonderful Ryan Gosling as Sebastian, a wannabe Jazz musician who falls for wannabe actress Mia played by the talented Emma Stone. A story about Hollywood itself (without the sex and violence). From the pastel colors of the sets and costumes to the light and shadows to the original music and the multiple dance numbers (large and small) La La Land is a beautifully made film. A standing ovation to Director and Writer Damien Chazelle, choreographer Mandy Moore, cinematographer Linus Sandgren and original songs by Justin Hurwitz. If you want to feel pure joy while watching a movie La La Land is the one for you.

On a more serious note (see what I did there) I also got to see Hidden Figures. A little known story of African-American women who helped get the USA into space. Fighting both sexism and racism three women working for NASA did their jobs and got their voices heard. The film stars the amazing Taraji P Henson as Kathrine Johnson, who at a young age had a love of knowledge with numbers and math that go way beyond my own and grows up to make sure the numbers are right in order to put a man in space. Janelle Monae plays Mary Jackson, who has a special ability for mechanics and wants to be a NASA engineer. Finally there is Dorothy Vaughan played by the awesome Octavia Spencer who shows NASA that black women should have the chance to rise through the ranks. All of these women must prove to themselves and their white male counterparts that they should all be equal because “here at NASA we all pee the same color”. Kevin Costner, Jim Parsons, (Nominee for Moonlight) Mahershala Ali, Kirsten Dunst, Aldis Hodge and Glen Powell also star. Hidden Figures is as wonderful as everyone says, I laughed at a few lines and cried a few times, I was mad at our country while being proud of some of its people.

If there is one thing these two films have in common is that they are strong proof as to why I love movies and why I still believe one day I will win an Oscar. I have said it before and I will say it again Hollywood and history are the two topics I know. I don’t like being around people and don’t talk much (I was voted quietest in my high school class) but then someone starts talking about a movie (or TV show) they’ve seen and I join the conversation. So when I see a film about two people trying to make their dreams come true, with the addition of song and dance, my heart is happy. When I watch a movie about a little known story out of America’s history I learn something new and that puts a smile on my face. The Academy Award celebration is my Christmas and Superbowl wrapped up in a beautiful and elaborate televised ceremony. A day when (as the say) Hollywood shines and the people who make the movies-from the loneliness PA, to the sound department, editor, screenwriter, music composer, the special effects department, cinematography, costume, hair and makeup departments, production designer, art design, to those who make documentaries and animated (short and feature length) film to the director, actors (Including supporting) and producers-it takes many people to create 2 hours of entertainment and well they may not make movies for the awards being nominated and winning is nice and the bragging rights are with you for the rest of your life.

Cheers to the nominees of the 89th annual Academy Awards. Thank you Hollywood and Thank you to the Academy. FADE TO BLACK

Friday, January 20, 2017

Forty-Five Suicide

It was 1 year, 3 months and 19 days into his Presidency.

On a Wednesday at 2:15pm all of the networks interrupted their regular schedule programing for BREAKING NEWS...White House on Lockdown

"There is an active shooter situation at The White House, at this time we have no details on any victims or who the shooter is."

"It has been two hours and no official information has come from The White House but witnesses  outside and passing by said they heard multiple gun shots"

"We are now five hours and 18 minutes into a lockdown at The White House and can report that three people have been shot including a secret service agent. No word on any fatalities”

"Nothing new since our last report but we will stay on the air for as long as the lockdown continues."

"The sun is rising on the east coast and it has been confirmed that The President was in the resident at the start of the lockdown but is now in the oval office.”

“This just in…BREAKING NEWS…We are getting reactions from inside the White House from Facebook and Twitter. There are seven people injured, one in serious condition.”

“We’ve been on the air for 24 hours”

“The first lady is in the room with the shooter. She is talking to him and trying to calm all involved.”

“The President’s youngest son was at school when the lockdown began he is now with his two adult brothers. The President’s two daughters are on lockdown at his NYC home.”

“We now go to Representative Michael Davis a Democrat from California who was with the President hours before the lockdown.”

“The President’s impeachment hearings have been postponed”

“Joining us to explain what could be happening inside the White House at this time is former FBI director Jason Maddow.”

BREAKING NEWS…”A suspicious bag has been found on the steps of The Lincoln Memorial.”

“The D.C. Police are at The Lincoln Memorial”

“Some staff, including those close to The President have been allowed to exit The White House.”

“American Airlines flight 247 has just hit Dumtp Tower in NYC”

“The President has not tweeted in 32 hours”

“We have Diana Jones, Staff Secutary to the administration on the phone…Ms. Jones are you there?”

“We are watching closely as D.C. police continue to work on the situation at The Lincoln Memorial.”

“We are now 50 hours into the lockdown at the White House and have yet to hear from The President.”

BREAKING NEWS…“The bag left at The Lincoln Memorial was a green backpack with the incials S.D. It was filled with school papers and a laptop.”

“This just in…”

“We are in the third day of White House on Lockdown.”

The screen goes to black

“All has gone silent as we wait for official word of the situation.”

“We were wrong, we were wrong all along. There was one gunshot. It was self-inflicted. We can now report… BREAKING NEWS…The President has committed suicide. The President has died. It is 1:22 pm on the east coast and if you have just turned on your TV or radio we have confirmed The 45th President of the United States is dead at 72.”

Friday, January 13, 2017

La La Land

I saw La La Land but cannot at this time write a review instead I want to see it in a theater a couple more times in hopes that what happens to Mia Farrow in The Purple Rose of Cairo happens to me while watching La La Land.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

The dark side of Nocturnal Animals

If you like film as art then you should take a chance on Nocturnal Animals but I should warn you that the movie itself is dark (literately and figuratively), disturbing and extremely tense. When the 1 hour and 56 minutes were over I felt like I could finally take a breath again.

As the opening credits roll the first camera shot focuses on a living piece of art. The indie movie then follows a lonely (in marriage and career) woman named Susan played by the amazing Amy Adams as she receives and reads a manuscript for a novel written by her ex-husband. That is when things get weird.

The superb Jake Gyllenhaal plays two roles, as Susan’s ex Edward (in flashbacks) and the main character in his manuscript, Tony Hastings. I know it sounds confusing and at times it is. I would go as far to say Nocturnal Animals is really 3 stories in 1 and have to admit that if you took away Amy Adam’s character the story would not change too much. After all the story within the story that she is reading is more than half of the film. That being said the viewer is seeing Edward’s words come alive through Susan’s eyes which makes for a crazy and very impactful brain overload. The acting by Adams and Gyllenhaal give the film its emotion and heart as I felt what they felt throughout the aspects of the stories being told. 

All filmmakers are artists but director Tom Ford (A Single Man) took his paintbrush and created something any artist (starving or not) should be proud of. The look of Texas by director of photography Seamus McGarvey by day and by night was beautiful and scary. I know I usually don’t write about or pay much attention to the so called lesser award show categories but on that point the Production Design by Shane Valentino, Set Decoration by Meg Everist, Art Direction by Christopher Brown and Editor Joan Sobel made the film even more fascinating to look at and allowed this viewer to throw herself into the lives of those on the big screen.

The movie is written by Ford and is based on a book by Austin Wright. It also stars Michael Shannon, Isla Fisher, Armie Hammer and Michael Sheen.

If any of what I wrote makes you say “Sounds like my type of film” then you really should check out Nocturnal Animals.   

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

TV Case Study #1

Thanksgiving 2016

Because of the news media Subject A on a subconscious level already had thoughts of starting a political fight on the mind so when Subject B on a unconscious level went there a argument ensued.

Subject B said SB wasn't funny and Subject A loudly announced being a fan of SB. Each went at the argument with a different P.O.V.

Subject A believes in mind to be smarter than anyone in the room and took statement by Subject B as a political insult while Subject B was just stating a innocent opinion.

I realized after wards why this "fight "ensued

What Subject A and Subject B don't understand is that there are different types of comedy/comedians

One is a comedian who spends time on the road preforming in front of an audience and tells jokes-i.e Jon Stewart, Denis Leary and Jerry Seinfeld.

Two is a comedian who spends time preforming in front of an audience with sketches (written ahead of time or improv) i.e. those who were a part of Second City like Steve Carell, Tina Fey and Stephen Colbert

SB falls into the second category...The late night show SB host isn't suppose to be Ha Ha funny it is a series that takes a look at what is happening in the world, takes one or two stories from daily topics (mostly in politics) and comments on events with a side of humor. There are no celebrity guests or silly games.

In conclusion...
Subject A and B are both right, it just depends on how you look at the situation.