Friday, June 22, 2012

TinkerBell: Secret of the Wings

Disney just released a new trailer for the much anticipated, at least at my house, TinkerBell movie, Secret of the Wings. It turns out Tink has a stronger connection to the new fairy than anyone would have expected; Tink and Periwinkle are sisters!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Monday, June 18, 2012

Snow White and the Huntsman

I saw Snow White and the Huntsman last night and I wasn't disappointed. I've been looking forward to this movie for months. It didn't have quite as much action as I was expecting, but it was appropriately dark without being gross and maintained a serious tone throughout the film.  The beginning of the movie was a little slow, but you have to tell your back-story before you get to the good stuff. And I was right about the costumes, they were gorgeous!

This film was full of incredible actors. Charlize Theron was fantastic as the fanatical, beauty-mad Queen Ravenna. She is truly frightening in the lengths she'll go to remain the fairest in the land. Chris Hemsworth was a good choice for the Huntsman. He is pathetic and sympathetic by turns, but finds his strength as he aids Snow White. I wasn't sure what to expect from Kristin Stewart, but other than an inconsistent accent, she wasn't bad as the innocent Princess. Sam Claflin, who I'd only seen as the Priest in Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, was the perfect choice for William, Snow White's childhood friend. The dwarves also featured several well-known actors, such as Ian McShane, Ray Winstone, and Bob Hoskins as the blind seer, Muir.

I had considered taking Bean to see Snow White and the Huntsman, despite its PG-13 rating, but I was glad that I didn't. This film is much darker and sadder than the old Disney film, and contained a few terror-filled moments in the Dark Forest full of bugs, snakes and monsters and one rather gross scene where the Queen was eating hearts. I wouldn't recommend this movie for kids under 13 or for those that are easily frightened. However, if you're a fan of dark fairy tales, this one is well worth watching.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Mirror Mirror

I watched Mirror Mirror the other night. I really wasn't expecting to like it, but it was actually pretty good. This was a new twist on a very old tale. It wasn't exactly frightening, but it was very funny. Many of the elements that would have been too frightening for children were toned down to make it family friendly. However, several of the themes were actually made more complex than they were in the original story. The dwarves were the victims of discrimination and had been banned from the village for being ugly. Snow White realized that she had to become a fighter to help her people and that she could be the one to save the day, rather than waiting for the Prince to do it for her. In the end though, it was the casting that really made this movie.

Julia Roberts is surprisingly good as the mad Queen. She is evil without being scary. Lily Collins is fantastic as the innocent Snow White. Armie Hammer is hilarious as Prince Alcott, with all of his ridiculous problems. He just can't seem to stay out of trouble. The seven dwarves aren't miners, but thieves who have been forced from their homes and former lives by the Queen. And they wear springy stilts and use swords and ninja skills to rob their victims. Their names have changed to suit their darker personalities. The dwarves' names are Napoleon, Half Pint, Grub, Grimm, Wolf, Butcher, and Chuckles. They are by turns sympathetic and ridiculous. The scenes where they train Snow White to be one of them are wonderful. I absolutely loved Nathan Lane as the Queen's chief toadie, Brighton. He is so simpering and weak that it is just hysterical! So, I have to say, although I wasn't expecting it, this movie was well worth seeing again.

Friday, June 8, 2012

The Avengers

So, I finally got a chance to see The Avengers last night and I have to say LOVED IT!! I've been a total Marvel fan for years, so I've been waiting for this movie for awhile. And it was co-written and directed by Joss Whedon; who could be better?

I won't give any spoilers here because I hate it when I really want to see a movie or read a book and someone comes along and tells me the best or worst part. I will say that the casting in this film was spot-on in my opinion. These talented actors have truly come to embody their characters. I'm sure it helps that this is the second film for most of them, and the third for Robert Downey, Jr as Tony Stark/Iron Man. I love him as Tony Stark! He is so perfectly arrogant and elitist. It's fantastic! And Mark Ruffalo gave a great performance in his first time out as Bruce Banner/The Hulk. I really enjoyed the previous Hulk film with Edward Norton, but Mark Ruffalo is better.

The Avengers is filled with the expected drama of getting the team to come together to save the world and has a ton of action. Each characters first appearance seems perfectly timed to help the story along. All in all, it was a great addition to the ever growing Universe of Marvel movies. And by the way, don't forget to stay at least part way through the credits. As I'm sure you know if you've seen the previous films, a cliffhanger/teaser awaits if you do. If you enjoy Super Hero movies or Marvel comics, be sure to check out The Avengers. You won't be disappointed.

I would recommend watching the previous films before seeing The Avengers. I was surprised at how many MacGuffins that referred to the other films could be found in each movie. To understand all of the references, the movies should be watched in this order:
          Captain America: The First Avenger
Iron Man
Iron Man 2
The Incredible Hulk
There are a million in-jokes between the films that are a lot of fun if you're a Marvel fan. And speaking of in-jokes, don't forget to keep an eye out for Stan Lee, the founder of Marvel Comics. He makes a special cameo appearance in nearly every Marvel film, including The Avengers, that I always look forward to. If you want to know where to find him, here's a list of the scenes to watch for in each movie.

Captain America: The First Avenger - When the Senator is attempting to present Captain Steve Rogers with a medal, an assistant comes to the stage to tell him that Captain America won't be coming. A 4-star general in the audience (Lee) says, "I thought he'd be taller."

Iron Man - When Tony Stark attends the Firefighter's Family Fund Benefit, he walks past Lee with two blondes and says "Look great, Hef."

Iron Man 2 - At the Stark Expo, Tony is introduced to a few members of the press; Larry King is played by Lee.

The Incredible Hulk - Lee plays the unsuspecting man in Milwaukee who "drank one of those guarana sodas. Guess it had a  little more kick than he was looking for."

Thor - Lee is the man driving the pickup, who tries to pull Thor's hammer Mjölnir from the crater, and ends up tearing off the bed of the truck, saying "Did it work?"

The Avengers - Of course, Lee also makes a cameo in The Avengers as well, but I'll let you watch for him yourself.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Brave Triple Play

Did anyone else see the new trailer for Brave on the Disney Channel today? The one where Queen Elinor is explaining how King Fergus courted her, with visual aids by the triplets? It was hilarious!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

My Recent Trip to Disney World

I just got back from Florida last night and I have a million things to share with you over the next few weeks. I'll be posting lots of new tips and tricks as well as the good, the bad, and the ugly about this most recent trip. Keep an eye out for new posts; they'll be coming soon.