Saturday, August 31, 2013

Expedition Everest

 
Today I'm over at Tips From the Disney Divas and Devos talking about one of the most exciting rides at Disney World: Expedition Everest.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Funko Thor: The Dark World POP Vinyl

Have you seen the latest from Funko in their POP vinyl collections? They have created a great new Thor set in honor of Thor: The Dark World which comes to theaters this November. First up is Thor, complete with Asgardian armor and hammer.







Next up is Loki, looking far less evil and conniving than normal.











And finally, there is a dark elf, who I'm assuming is the bad guy. (What can I say? I may love Marvel, but I mostly know the movies and tv series and haven't read that many of the actual comic books. Bad, I know.)

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Day of the Dead Jack and Sally by Funko

 
I love Funko's POP Disney designs and this set is fantastic. They've combined Jack Skellington and Sally, from the Nightmare Before Christmas, with a traditional Day of the Dead calavera. Love it!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Photo of the Week

Ursula in the Under the Sea - Journey of the Little Mermaid ride in the Magic Kingdom.


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

New Thor: The Dark World Posters




Marvel just released two new Thor: The Dark World posters. The first features an action shot of Thor and his lightning. The second is a great image of Loki being Loki.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Quote of the Week


You can design and create, and build 
the most wonderful place in the world. 

But it takes people 
to make the dream a reality.
- Walt Disney

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Phineas and Ferb: Mission Marvel

We recently watched Phineas and Ferb: Mission Marvel for the second time and I'm sure we'll watch it many more times. If you like Phineas and Ferb or Iron Man, Thor, the Hulk, or Spiderman, it is definitely a blast to watch. There are so many in-jokes for Marvel fans. And Stan Lee makes a few brief appearances as a hotdog vendor. The story goes that Dr. Doofenshmirtz has created a Power-draining-inator, which accidentally steals the powers from four of Marvel's greatest superheroes. With the help of Phineas, Ferb, and their gang of friends, the heroes hope to recover their powers and defeat their archenemies: Red Skull, Venom, Whiplash, and Modok. With the help (and interference) of Candace and Super Special Agent P, can the gang help the heroes save the world? Be sure to watch and find out. Phineas and Ferb: Mission Marvel will be available on DVD on October 1.

Friday, August 23, 2013

New Disney Dream Portrait from Annie Leibovitz

I just love the Disney Dream Portraits from Annie Leibovitz. She has created several in recent years, and they are always just gorgeous. The latest in this amazing collection is a portrait of Jennifer Hudson as Tiana from the Princess and the Frog. This one is titled Where you always follow your heart. As with previous photos, this new one will appear in several magazines in the coming months.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Marvel One-Shot: Agent Carter

Have you seen the latest clip from the Marvel One-Shot: Agent Carter? It looks like she can take care of herself. The full short will be available on September 24th as part of the extras on the Iron Man 3 Blu-ray.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Farscape

 I don't know about you, but I'm a total Sci-fi addict. In fact, it is nearly as bad as my Disney addiction. I love several science fiction shows, but most of my favorites are no longer on the air. Lately, I've been watching reruns of Farscape. This Brian Henson production is one of my favorites. Unfortunately, this series only lasted 4 years and ended on one doozy of a cliff hanger ten years ago. Fortunately, they were able to finish the story with a miniseries/movie called the Peacekeeper Wars.

Farscape follows the adventures of a human astronaut, Commander John Crichton, who, while testing the space module he has created, gets shot through a wormhole to another galaxy. He ends up being captured by an alien ship, a living ship, that controlled by a small group of escaped prisoners from several different planets. The ship, named Moya, is a Leviathan, a sentient ship who has a biological bond with her Pilot, a multi-armed alien who aids Moya in her journeys. Officer Aeryn Sun is the most human of the aliens. She is a Sebacean Peacekeeper, a military group bred for the sole purpose of maintaining peace throughout the galaxy. Aeryn at first rebels against the crew of Moya at every opportunity, but eventually learns to see them all as family.Pa'u Zotoh Zhaan is a vegetative humanoid who is a priestess on her home planet of Delvia. She is generally a calming influence on the others and also acts as their healer. Ka D'Argo is a Luxan warrior, a giant with tentacle like dreads and a deep sense of honor. Although he is slow to warm up to the others, he eventually comes to value their friendship and will fight to the death to defend them. Dominar Rygel the XVI was an ornery little Hynerian who has been deposed by his cousin. He is conniving and tricky, but can be coerced into doing what is right, most of the time. Chiana joined the crew midway through the first season. She is a Nebari with some very interesting ethics. Chiana often gets into trouble but uses her wits and feminine wiles to escape the situation. They are chased across the galaxy by two villains, Captain Bialar Crais and the Sebacian-Scarran hybrid Scorpius. Both are Peacekeepers with private agendas that lead them to seek out John Crichton, either to destroy him, or to acquire the wormhole information buried in his brain.

Over the course of the series, these characters, and a few others, became a family. They explore the galaxy, helping others and trying to find a way home. They often encounter life and death situations that require them to work together to find a solution. By the end of the series, although they never manage to reach their homeworlds, they have found the perfect home, together.

The look of Farscape is amazing, with many different alien species and planets. Many of the aliens they encounter are Muppets created by Brian Henson and Jim Henson Productions. The Muppet creatures are fantastical and often, in characters such as Pilot, really large and detailed. The Muppets made it possible to have creatures that would not have been possible had they been actors in a costume.
One of my favorite things about the show is the snarky comments from Crichton. They make a ton of pop culture references that are just hilarious. The nicknames he gives each of the characters and the way he reads each situation is rather ridiculous, but a lot of fun to watch. I must admit, I'm a sucker for a love story, and the Aeryn and Crichton one was a doozy. They spent four seasons trying to work things out. And then, just when it looked like they would have a happy ending, they were blown to bits in a season finale cliffhanger. That's when the Sci-Fi Channel cancelled the series. I was very disappointed! I swear, you can become so invested in the characters that it is very upsetting when they cancel a series mid-storyline. Fortunately, two years later, a four-hour miniseries was filmed to tie up all of the loose ends, and there were a lot to tie up!

If you haven't watched it before, Farscape is currently being re-aired on Pivot and is also available on DVD. The fifteenth anniversary edition of the entire series will be available on Blu-ray on November 5. I would definitely recommend watching it in its entirety, especially if you love Jim Henson productions.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

The Pirate Fairy Trailer


I don't know who is going to be more excited for this one: me or Bean! It's fairies and pirates! How could you go wrong?

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Saving Mr. Banks Trailer



Have you seen the trailer for Saving Mr. Banks? It looks like an amazing story.

Monday, August 12, 2013

D23 Live Action Movie Update

I wish I could have gone to the D23 Expo this year; there was a lot of amazing news shared these past 3 days. However, I'd like to share what I think will be the most fun: the live action movies. Here's a little preview of what you can expect in the next few years.
All images ©Disney
First up was Thor: The Dark World. I love Marvel movies in general, and I can't wait to see this one. The second film in Phase Two of the Avengers Initiative, this film will see the return of all of the great actors that made the first film such a success. Thor returns to Earth to see Jane Foster and bring her to Asgard. Together, Thor and his companions must risk everything to face an enemy even Odin and the Asgardians cannot defeat. Thor: The Dark World arrives in theaters November 8th.
Next up was Into the Woods. I saw Into the Woods on stage when I was about 13. It wasn't entirely appropriate, but a lot of the inuendo was over my head at the time. I must say I'm a little concerned that Disney is making this film. After all, this particular Sondheim musical is a very dark take on classic fairy tales. By the second act, you realize that no one has had a happily ever after, and all of the characters are completely miserable. All that aside, this film is an example of some really amazing casting. Actors include Anna Kendrick as Cinderella,Chris Pine as Cinderella's Prince, Christine Baransky as Cinderella's Stepmother, Johnny Depp as the Wolf, and Meryl Streep as the Witch who is trying to teach them all a lesson. It should be fun! Into the Woods arrives in theaters in December 2014.
Directed by the legendary Kenneth Branagh, Disney's next adventure is the live action Cinderella. This version is expected to follow the traditional story, so it will be up to the casting to set this film apart. The cast includes: Helena Bonham Carter as the Fairy Godmother, Cate Blanchett as Lady Tremaine (Cinderella's wicked stepmother), and Stellan Skarsgard as the Grand Duke (an adviser to the king). Lily James (Lady Rose on Downton Abbey) and Richard Madden (Robb Stark on Game of Thrones) round out the cast as Cinderella and her Prince Charming.  Disney's Cinderella arrives in theaters in March 2015.
We've now arrived at what may be the most intriguing of these live action films: Maleficent. Following the story of Maleficent, rather than Aurora, this is an interesting spin on the classic tale of Sleeping Beauty. Starring Angelina Jolie in the title role, Maleficent will show us what events led up to her becoming evil and ultimately caused her to curse a tiny baby, the Princess Aurora. Maleficent arrives in theaters on July 2, 2014.
Next up was the Muppets: Most Wanted. As with all Muppet movies, this one looks to be a wild ride. Following that great Muppet tradition, this film will star all your favorite Muppets alongside great guest stars like Ricky Gervais, Ty Burrell, and Tina Fey. I'm not sure what this one will be about, other than pure Muppet madness, but I'm sure it will be a blast to watch! The Muppets Most Wanted arrives in theaters in Spring 2014.
For more Marvel fun, we have Captain America: The Winter Soldier. In this film, Cap will once again be battling against injustice, cynicism, and intolerance in defense of the American dream. Teaming up once again with Black Widow, he will have to fight a friend from his past in order to save the future. Captain America: The Winter Soldier arrives in theaters April 4, 2014.
Next up is Saving Mr. Banks. The film stars Tom Hanks as Walt Disney and Emma Thompson as PL Travers, the author of Mary Poppins. It is the story of how Walt promised his daughters that he would turn their favorite book into a movie, without knowing how hard PL Travers would fight to prevent it. In two short weeks in 1961, Walt does his best to change her mind, with the help of the Sherman brothers and their amazing songs. However, it's not until he thinks back on his own childhood that he begins to understand the ghosts that haunt her and how they can work together to create something amazing. Saving Mr. Banks arrives in theaters December 20, 2013.

Other project, which I will admit I know very little about, include Tomorrowland, a science fiction film with an unknown story, and Bears, a Disney Nature film.Tomorrowland stars Britt Robertson (Angie on Under the Dome) as the film's heroine, George Clooney as an inventor, and Hugh Laurie as the villain. Tomorrowland arrives in theaters on December 12, 2014. Bears, a film about the lives of a group of Alaskan bears, arrives in theaters on April 18, 2014. I look forward to seeing these films and will be sure to pass along additional information as I find it.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

New Thor: The Dark World Trailer

Just in time for Youtube Geek Week, Disney and Marvel have released a new trailer for Thor: The Dark World. Bean and I are ecstatic!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Friday, August 2, 2013

Disney Classics, Part 3

Part 3 of my favorite Disney classics includes two more wonderful films: Pollyanna and Bedknobs and Broomsticks. As before, the following contains spoilers of these classic films.
Pollyanna is probably the saddest of these classic Disney films, but it's still a great story full of music and laughter. Based on a classic book written by Eleanor Porter, Pollyanna is the tale of a young orphan who moves to the town of Harrington to live with her wealthy aunt Polly. The daughter of poor missionaries, Pollyanna is a happy child who always sees the best in people and life, thanks to the "Glad Game" her father taught her. She makes a lot of new friends in the community, including a recluse Mr. Pendergast, a hypochondriac Mrs Snow, an orphan boy named Jimmy, and Reverend Ford, the town's minister. With her happy demeanor and bright outlook, Pollyanna changes the lives of everyone in town, except her unhappy Aunt Polly who actually controls the town. When the town decided to hold a carnival to raise money for a new orphanage, Aunt Polly refuses to allow Pollyanna to participate. Unsurprisingly, Pollyanna sneaks out and has a marvelous time at the carnival. However, when she gets back home, she tries to sneak in by climbing the tree outside her room. Unfortunately, she falls and breaks her back, forcing her to keep to her bed and causing her to become depressed. Her aunt realizes that she truly loves the girl, and the whole town comes to see Pollyanna off to Baltimore for a surgery they hope will allow her to walk again. While the film ends before we learn if Pollyanna walked again, it is still a wonderful movie about the power of hope. My grandmother introduced Bean to this film when she was 4, just like she introduced me and we both loved it.
Bedknobs and Broomsticks is based on two books by an English children's author, Mary Norton. It is the story of a single Englishwoman, Eglantine Price, who decides that she can best help the war effort by becoming a witch. Her lessons are interrupted by the arrival of the three Rawlins children, Charlie, Carrie, and Paul, who have been sent to the country during the London Blitz. The children and Miss Price don't get along and wish to part ways as soon as possible. However, when the children discover that Miss Price is a witch, they agree to keep her secret so long as she gives them something of value. She offers them a traveling spell that will make the old brass bed upstairs travel anyplace they wish to go in mere moments. Due to the sudden closing of the College of Witchcraft in London, Miss Price and the children seek out the college's Headmaster, one Emelius Brown, who it turns out is a charlatan. He never expected anyone to actually be able to perform magic, so when he runs out of pages in the book he was using for lessons, he simply closed the school. Miss Price, the children, and Professor Brown head off on a wonderful adventure seeking the rest of the book. Their journey's take them to a mystical island and the bottom of the sea. They finally return home and Eglantine uses the spell to animate several items in the house, to the delight of the children. When a German raiding party takes over Eglantine's house, she uses the Substitutiary Locomotion spell to defeat them with an army of reanimated armor from the museum. In the end, Eglantine and the children realize that they are better off together, and Professor Brown plans to join them when he returns from the war. This has long been one of my favorite movies. I love Angela Lansbury as Miss Eglantine Price and the songs are wonderful and memorable. Bean adores this movie too as it has a lot of fun moments.

I hope you've enjoyed this walk down memory lane as I've shared some of my favorite Disney classics. Be sure to watch these great old films as a family and enjoy the messages they bring. You'll be glad you did.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Disney Classics, Part 2

There are a lot of great Disney classics to choose from. Here are my reviews of two more: Parent Trap and Summer Magic. Again, the following includes spoilers of these classic films.
Parent Trap is a hilarious story about a set of twins who were separated in infancy and meet up unexpectedly at summer camp. At first, Sharon and Susan don't realize they are related, and pick on each other with outlandish hijinks. Once they are forced to spend time in together in isolation, they realize that they have a lot in common, including sharing the same parents. The girls decide to switch places; Sharon goes to California to meet her father and Susan goes to Boston to meet her mother. But when Sharon discovers that her father, Mitch, is planning to remarry an awful woman named Vicky, she decides to call Susan and their mother, Maggie (the fantastic Maureen O'Hara) to put a stop to it. They surprise Mitch, causing him a lot of confusion and trouble. The girls try to get Maggie and Mitch back together by recreating their first date. This is also where they sing "Let's Get Together", a great classic Disney song. When the dinner fails, the girls refuse to tell which is which until after the annual family campout with their father. After a day spent tormenting Vicky, they convince their father that the woman he really loves is their mother. The original Parent Trap starring Hayley Mills is my favorite, but the remake with Lindsay Lohan is actually pretty cute. Bean has watched both versions several times and requests them often.
Summer Magic is probably my favorite of the Disney classics. I've seen it at least 100 times and I still love it. It's full of wonderful songs and a beautiful story about family and community. Based on the book Mother Carey's Chickens, Summer Magic is the story of the Carey family, the mother Margaret and her three children: Nancy, Gilley, and Peter. The Carey's have found themselves in dire financial straights after the death of Mr. Carey and are forced to leave their Boston home. Nancy has decided that they should move to a home that they saw once on a vacation; the yellow house in Beulah. The Carey's have a bit of difficulty adjusting to country life, but are aided by the "yellow house's" kindly caretaker, Osh Poppum (the wonderful Burl Ives). As life begins to settle down, an orphaned cousin, Julia, arrives to create a stir. Through it all, the family learns that being together as a family is what's most important, and that with a lot of love and a little luck, they can make the best of any situation. There are many memorable songs throughout the film, including: Flitterin', Beautiful Beulah, Summer Magic, On the Front Porch, and my two favorites: Pink of Perfection and the Ugly Bug Ball. We haven't had a chance to watch this movie recently (we misplaced our copy in our last move and still haven't found it) but I highly recommend it. It's a great family film and a lot of fun to watch.

Tomorrow, the last of my favorite classic Disney films: Pollyanna and Bedknobs and Broomsticks.