• Culture and Entertainment

    What I Watched: December 2020

    This is very ’90’s early ‘0’s and Star Wars heavy. I of course watched plenty of Hallmark, but it peters out towards Christmas when one has been overdosing since November. I started using my Disney+ more this month than I did in November.

    Friends. I think I was still rewatching bits of Friends during my week long HBO trial.

    I’ll Be Home for Christmas. I think I saw the last bit of this movie years ago. I think I was surrounded by Jonathan Taylor Thomas growing up without having seen any live action movie he was in. Its been so long since I’ve seen The Lion King (need to rewatch that while I still have Disney+), that his voice didn’t trigger memories, he just looked familiar in that 90’s ’00’s way.

    10 Things I Hate About You. Rewatch. Again, ’90’s vibes and nostalgia, I was too young to have watched this anyway when it came out. But all the teens and tween around me growing up would have dressed like this. There is just familiarity in movies of this period even though I only have seen them recently.

    Solo: A Star Wars Story. This is NOT Han Solo. Also, way to make Lando look like an sulky idiot . . . that droid part, what the freaking what?! Han and Lando were both supposed to be that jaunty, bad boy, devil may care types. And sorry those types don’t spring from the non-entity (in the former case) and goof (in the latter case) types. Besides the script, I don’t like the casting for Han, but they could have given Glover a far better chance to shine, he had some good parts, it’s just the whole movie was so, well, blah (and that robot part, what the f people?!).

    The Mandalorian season two, I’d dragged my feet on watching The Clone Wars and Rebels and just went ahead and finished the Mandalorian. Luke’s appearance signified that they are dropping the non-canon absolutely absurd newest films. Glory hallelujah, I enjoyed aspects of them, but sorry, they ain’t Star Wars or rather they are Star Wars lazily and terribly repackaged.

    The Clone Wars. I love these, I love these, I love these! THIS is Star Wars at it’s full potential, this is the real, true stuff. I officially fell into true Star Wars fan with these, and it makes me understand the fury of the original og people at the absurdly lazily written new movies. I turned to these as something to watch while I worked on last minutes presents, and then I was sucked in and watched them on Christmas Eve and Christmas.

    I wish I’d watched the Clone Wars and Rebels before I finished The Mandalorian, it would have made the appearance of Bo Katan (presumably, I haven’t yet watched Rebels) and Asoka Tano SO much more significant, especially the latter, I saw she was in Clones, but that was just a slight thing, I knew nothing of the series, she could have been one of many random characters . . . then I actually watched it, and she’s Anakin’s padawan! I didn’t like her for the first few episodes but then it got better, so much better, I love the older brother/younger sister dynamic.3

    This show, oh, my stars, its SO cool, it so much better than the movies. And guys, Anakin is COOL in this, so cool. Not the whiny pretty boy he is in the movies. And oh, oh, it makes me so much more upset that he becomes Vader, I relate to his attitude so much.

    Also, his back and forth with Obi Wan is great. I remember I wanted to punch Obi Wan for his pompous legalistic rule following attitude and total lack of empathy for Anakin in the live action, I felt that he was partially responsible for driving Anakin away, that he wasn’t being a good mentor at all.

    Also, you want strong female Jedi, look to The Clone Wars. These are talented, TRAINED Jedi, same as the men, not Mary Sue’s like Rey was, sorry, you don’t just hope in, no training required.

    However, it bothers me that the “good” guys are producing clone armies of living humans while the “bad” guys are producing non-living drones. So who is getting more killed really? Lambs to be slaughtered is what it feels like the Republic is doing.

    The ’90’s and early ’00’s nostalgia is strong for me right now. I wasn’t allowed to watch anything I’m watching now or I freaked out (in the case of the Star Wars prequels), but I was surrounded by merchandise and advertisements and little bits of shows and previews and the styles, so a lot of things I don’t “know” have that vibe which I recognize.

    I was 8 when the first and 14 when the last prequel came out, so I was surrounded by prequels stuff. I feel like there is just so much vying for attention now, I don’t think the dominance of the prequels then can be compared to anything now. I think this is part of why I SO love The Clone Wars, it takes me back to what I was surrounded by growing up without the disappointment those movies actually turned out to be watching as an adult.

  • Culture and Entertainment

    What I Watched: November 2020

    Edited 12/27/20. Um, so I left off several things I watched because I didn’t look at the list I was keeping.

    An Inspecter Calls. I can’t recommend this to everyone, its very dark, very dark and hopeless, doesn’t end well. I don’t really agree with the social portrayal, its far too simplistic and takes agency away from one character. However, I did tell one of my sisters that it seemed to be quite her style, she likes depressing stories. She said she was a first offended that I said she’d like it, and then by the end realized, yes this is her type of thing.

    The Lady Vanishes, the newest version. I greatly enjoyed this. Why I like a certain level of scary mystery and dislike much else dark, I have no idea, perhaps because vintage style mysteries often don’t have sympathetic victims and the bad guys are always caught and dealt with?

    Gosforth Park. Don’t recommend, nasty is the best way to describe it, like a sort of less nasty, less dark version of that abomination Penhallow I read earlier this year. I should have stopped watching it. I discovered later that Julian Fellows made this, and Downton Abbey was supposed to be the follow up to this. That enlightened me a bit, DA made be feel a bit nasty, it has nothing on this.

    I watched Clueless again I think.

    The Final Fix. This is a hard watch (also, warning, someone dies, I’m not sure exactly why I was shocked considering the subject matter, I guess I was shocked because it was included, like this is real people, not a movie, although it’s not like they had control over that), but it is very important. It deals with an potentially life altering and societal altering treatment for opioid addiction that mainstream medicine has been ignoring for decades (per the film).

    The Mandalorian. I’m behind now (so no spoilers!) because I really need to watch Rebels and Clone Wars, because characters from there are starting to be introduced. So, baby Yoda isn’t so cute now. I could barely watch that episode. We were talking about it, and my brother was like, “yeah, we knew you’d hate that episode.” I think I’m behind two episodes now, I think I need to watch Rebels and Clone Wars first.

    Lots of Hallmark (both channels, some new, some old). Christmas in Vienna (the best?!), On the 12th Date of Christmas, The Perfect Christmas Gift, Five Star Christmas, Timeless ChristmasGood Morning Christmas, A Nashville Christmas Carol, The Angel TreeWe watched more, but these were the best, not sure how to rank, tried to rank in order. I would watch the first view again (I have watched Christmas in Vienna again). None of them have the same sparkle, quality, depth of the older and up to maybe 2016 group. I’d dropped off keeping track, but I don’t think there really have been any that would make my list recently.

    Rewatched The Princess Diaries again. Oh, that is SUCH a comfort film. One of the few live action films that I have nostalgia for (because we didn’t watch much until we were older). I think I saw this at 10 or 11.

    Rewatched lots of Friends sections, someday I will make myself sit through every minute of every episode.

  • Culture and Entertainment

    What I Watched: September and October 2020

    I forgot to do a movie round up for September and since I’ve not really been watching much I thought I put September and October together.

    September

    What a Girl Wants. I needed a nice, fluffy funny film, and this delivered, especially a certain hilarious scene with Colin Firth dancing in front of the mirror, especially since Colin Firth always plays a variation of the same character: an emotionally constipated somewhat priggish Brit.

    “No hugs dear, I’m British, we only show affection to dogs and horses.”

    I believe I also started Oh My Venus, my first K-drama, I didn’t realize it is more like a series not a movie, so I didn’t get very far, and I’ve restarted my Hulu subscription, so I’m watching it again this month, and I’m halfway through now I think. I at first thought it dragged and was rather bewildered, but then the super funny stuff started happening.

    October

    Jumanjii 2. I haven’t seen any Jumanjii’s until we watched this on a sibling movie night. I was screaming with laughter, I will definitely have to watch the first one. Kevin Hart was a scream, my sister said she thought he was best in this one and that Jack Black was the best in the first remake. I need to watch the first one soon.

    Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. Eh, after Some Like it Hot, this is really tame.

    Twelve Angry Men. Wow. wow. wow. Everyone, and I mean everyone should watch this. If you don’t know much about it, don’t learn anything, just go into it without learning, it packs its punch stronger that way.

    Youtube

    I learned about Darling Desi on Youtube from this post by Hannah of Literary Morning, but I really started watching the videos when she started doing her fall videos, talk of atmospheric, they are SO fun and inspiring! This channel is so unique. I’ve already watched two of the movies she mentioned on her mysteries video.

    Lauren Johnson has lots of fall sewing and craft videos, and I just love her aesthetic. I first found out about the glorious Rifle Paper company through her.

  • Culture and Entertainment

    What I Watched August 2020

    In July I forgot to include Miss Marple: The Moving Finger. The modern one, with James D’Arcy, which is why I watched it. It was one of my favorite Agatha Christie books, and when I randomly saw a bit with him in it, I knew I had to find it. The series is on Hulu. I loved James D’Arcy, but I think overall it was silly and the flippant comment at the end was in bad taste. I also think things were changed to give a different feel, but I usually forget most of each Agatha Christie books beyond my either negative or positive reaction almost instantaneously upon finishing them.

    I watched part of Oh, My Venus on Hulu as well. It was my first K-drama, and I didn’t realize they were so long. I assumed the English subtitles would immediately be on, but I had to turn them on, and then I still feel like I was so confused about a lot, and I don’t know where the cultural confusion started and the style of the drama confusion ended. I almost permanently quit, but then the funny parts started happening. There is one scene that was absolutely killer. Also, unlike Hallmark friends her ex was SUPER attractive, and while they weirdly feature his cheating affair, I was loving his smirking smile. And this is why women get in trouble with guys because of the “bad boy” trope. Anyway. I still have to finish this one. I’ve got a focus issue.

    Quibi the Fugitive. I’d been getting Quibi ads on Youtube videos, but since the two shows were scary or gross, I didn’t even pay attention to what Quibi was, I only figured it out later. However, The Fugitive caught my interest right away, that kind of thing is right up my alley, and I loved watching it during my breaks at work, it was a nice treat. HOWEVER, the pizzaz couldn’t cover the absolutely atrocious acting, writing, and oh, the SO many layers of ethical issues, as in, there would be no plot with everyone doing wrong.

    He’s Not That Into You. So I’ve not been into movies and television lately and when I have I’ve come up with some really pathetic ones, maybe so I wouldn’t have to think/pay attention much? Yeah, by watch, I mean skim, there was quite a been of sliding through stuff I didn’t want to watch (like you know, the cheaters, “what if he is the the ONE” see what that stupid pie in the sky fantasy concept gets you). It was boring, and for the most part too excruciatingly real to stuff I hear. You know, if you don’t want a jack***, don’t be one or don’t chase them. And when you find out that you are with one, don’t try for win that loser back, dump his/her *** the first time!!!! Also, Justin Long was super attractive . . . yet don’t date bad boys, sorry. I mean, if you are expecting a good one or to change him. If you are both openly bad to each other, have fun.

    The IT Crowd. So my IT brother-in-law introduced some of my sisters to this show. I’d seen Plant Based Bride do her husband’s bullet journal for one month with the theme of this show (although I can’t find the video, I’m starting to feel crazy but I’m sure she did one, edit, I finally found it after I commented on her Instagram asking about it, I’d looked and searched and thought I was crazy), and I may have heard of it another place. I needed something funny, I assumed I’d get lots of sarcasm as its British. I failed to account for a few things, I’d forgotten my brother-in-law’s family taste (Napoleon Dynamite and Elf both of which my sisters have informed me I’d hate) in humor, and I’d also ignored the fact that I don’t find most modern British shows/humor I’ve tried or tried to try all that funny. Actually, I also forgot to account for a type of British humor that I don’t even know how to define and which I forget about. I know if from Princess Bride but I think it also applies to Monty Python (and perhaps to Mr. Bean which my siblings love but which I’ve yet to force myself to watch more than like 30 seconds of). It is not at all dry. I don’t only like dry humor, but I like a particular kind of goofy, like Monkey Business (which also has sarcasm). This kind of humor is like intentionally bad parody. I like sharp poking fun or witty banter or real parody, but not goofy absurdism. The first episode featured more the style I liked, and Moss is darling, but I quickly got bored when goofy stuff unrelated to IT characterization dominated. Edit: also scatological humor which I HATE with a passion).

    New Girl, “We’re reverse Mormons.” There was a lot of cheap hilarity at first and then it devolved to being all about sex (or was revealed to be) and everyone and everything was boring, no one had any interests. The main girl who was supposed to be awkward and quirky just became basic. And I think Nick was supposed to be the chill, cool guy, not the needy, daddy, issues loser. Should be titled, “Trying to be Friends.” Yeah, failed at that.

    Rewatched both Apple Dumpling Gang movies and Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. Where is this wit now?! Psych, That 70’s Show, and Friends have it, but is that all that is witty in modern stuff?! I’m going to make myself hate those shows if I keep rewatching them.

    I rewatched Clueless twice, I needed to hear some clever burns and to see young Paul Rudd.

     

  • Culture and Entertainment,  Reading

    What I Read and Watched: October 2019

    I’m rather burned out and unmotivated. I barely read, watched a few Hallmarks (not really in the mood for many of these this year thankfully, but really read for old favorites for Christmas).

    Books

    The Dream Stealer by Sid Fleischman. Uninspiring kids’ book.

    The Queen’s Secret by Jessica Day George. A middle-grade book that as I was reading caused me to feel like I picked up a middle book . . . I had. I’m interested to a least skim the next whenever it comes out, but not really super inspired to read the first one though.

    From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg. Middle-grade, okay, reminded me of the much more interesting How to Steal a Million.

    Movies

    Clueless. So, way raunchier than I was expecting (I guess I didn’t realize it was 90’s or think much further about that). I could have done without that. All the 90’s Valley Girl talk was hilarious though, at least I assume that is what some of it was anyway. Everyone’s accent sounded Northeastern though. The driving part is funny. Cher is funny. Cher’s friend’s boyfriend who is trying to be all ganster but has braces, that was a hilarious. The “Mr. Martin” and “Harriet” are adorbs. I generally find the modern version cuter, apparently since I loved Martin and Harriet in Emma Approved, better even than Knightley and Emma.

    I wanted to like it, but between skipping because of the scratches on the dvd and my boredom, my trying to do a million things at the same time and finish the movie before family and guests got home from church (Sunday, what a great day to watch a movie like this . . .) and the changes in the plot and far too fast plot, I was disappointed. I will try it again, but yeah. Not near as much “Mr. Knightley” as there was in the book, plus making “Frank” gay completely changed the plot. In Emma, Mr. Knightley is jealous of Frank before anyone meet him, Emma is building him up as the perfect man, there is tons of flirtation, and he generally is the cause of Mr. Knightley realizing he loves Emma, going away to try to get over it, the ultimate avowal of love etc. Yeah, that falls terrible flat in the movie. The “Mr. Elton” guy has more of a point than the “Frank” while I think that Frank holds a slightly bigger role in the book. All that contributed to the flat, rushed ending.

     

  • Culture and Entertainment

    What I Watched: July 2019 (Mainly That 70’s Show Ramblings)

    Because of Endgame, I was inspired to watch Ant-Man and Ant-Man and the Wasp. I preferred the first. I was annoyed by Ant-Man when I was first introduced to him in Civil War, and so I wasn’t inspired to watch his movies, but like almost everyone, he was amazing in Endgame, so I was intrigued and went back and watched his movies. They were quite fun, especially the first.

    Now, if you don’t care about fan-girling, you can skip this (I usually find it annoying too, but, well here we are), but really, watch That 70’s Show.

    I was still watching That 70’s Show well into August. I pretty much ended watching at the 6th season but skimmed for Jackie and Hyde parts in the 7th. I’d been skipping more and more starting with season 5. Then I turned around and started over skipping in all the seasons but increasing to end somewhere in 6. Man, I love all the good stuff in the show and am so disappointed that it could have been so much better. TV people have got to stop being so greedy and trying to add ridiculous plot-lines and heart-wrenching and/or petty drama that ruins characters simply to extend seasons.

    This doesn’t matter nears as much for a mainly episode based show like Psych (although it’s still annoying), but this show need more continuity. And everyone was SO old. Extending the show 5 seasons was quite enough of a stretch between age and plot-line.

    Jackie and Hyde should’ve gotten together in season 3, Eric and Donna should’ve gotten back together in season 4, Kelso should’ve kept goofing around and maybe gotten a job (he clearly wasn’t meant to pair off or grow up as fast as the others), and they should’ve let Fez keep his sweetness and sass instead stripping it from him and ramping up his pervy-ness and also, not made Caroline crazy, they were so cute originally. They should’ve rounded out everyone’s growth and set them on their first year out of high-school with happy hints for the future in season 5.

    I have so many words I wrote on Jackie and Hyde (and the whole show), but I’m going to keep it short since I will have to gather and collect them (and maybe next re-watch I’ll have a post including why I just love Hyde and their relationship), and because other people have already written some awesome posts such as this one on their relationship and all the depth (a must read). This one is good too.

    Here’s a light one from Playbuzz.

    Here is why we love Hyde.

    For any other heart-broken Jackie and Hyde shippers (Zenmasters), here are some playlists

    This one is on all their background sweet moments, like I mean, this was one of my favorite things, so natural and sweet, I’ve never seen anything like this in film or tv. I mean that sets the tone for everything.

    Here and here are compilations of them with music. I didn’t save this one, but there is also a video someone did using show clips to portray their ending as it should have been.

    Here and here are video lists of why they are an awesome couple.

     

  • Culture and Entertainment,  Reading

    What I Read and What I Watched: July 2019

    I didn’t read much in July. I brought several books on vacation and barely read at all. I was not in the mood, but my younger sisters started watching Psych and got me hooked again. I’d meant to rewatch those at some point. I remember one blogger recently asking if people preferred Monk or Psych. Since at that point I’d watched Psych 7 years ago and Monk recently, I wasn’t sure. Oh, it’s Psych all the way. I was SO thrilled that this show stood the test of time for me. The first time I watched it the 7th season was still airing, and between waiting for episodes and not likening the feel anymore, I quit in the early episodes of that season. This time, I quit sooner. I actually feel the show falls in quality in season 6. But before that, yes, just my thing.

    It’s also the first real adult U.S. television show I watched. I think Castle was next, but I didn’t really watch that in order, not sure that will have the same appeal either. Any show needs to end many seasons sooner than it does. Even ones I enjoy. The other shows I’ve watched in more recent years like Parks and Rec and Friends, well, I don’t think those will stand the test of time. I didn’t enjoy them near as much as expected. Television shows are such a “commitment” to me, that I usually (now anyway) see things on Pinterest or clips on YouTube and watch, then I have to feel like starting them.

    I’d seen clips and quotes from That 70’s Show years ago, but I wasn’t ready to commit, nor I think able to handle that humor then, don’t get me wrong, Fez almost always crosses the line so far he isn’t even in sight (why couldn’t they have focused more on his naivety and sweetness?!), and there are things the other characters say that bother me too, but oh, my, now, I LOVE this show. And by this I mean the early seasons plus Jackie and Hyde, there are only 6 (5 and 6 are a joke for most characters as they are overused, flattened, or made out of character and their plot-lines are mostly soap operatic) seasons, 7 is a joke (as Jackie and Hyde join the character and plot devolution and soap opera drama) and some stupid fanfic got made into a season unwatched, unmentionable, nightmarish. I think the show should’ve stopped at 4 or 5 after putting Jackie and Hyde together in 3. I don’t like everything in Jackie and Hyde’s relationship (all the drama which is such lazy writing, plus so out of character for Hyde), but wow, overall one of my (if not my) favorite couples ever, I knew they were going to be together before starting the show, and I was shipping them so hard. Of course the writing fell short of this couple’s potential starting at the end of 5 and reappearing again in 6 and then ruining everything later. All this sounds like I hated the show, but I loved the beginning plus Jackie and Hyde so much that the disappointment in the later seasons hurt. So much potential wasted.

    Dad bought Avengers: Endgame the day it came out on digital and we watched it that day. I hadn’t cared for Infinity War, I was barely paying attention by the end (probably shouldn’t watch dramatic/action films on my laptop), but I greatly enjoyed this one. And Thor, oh, my. The I got up the next day and watched Spider-Man: Far from Home which was the main reason I’d wanted to watch Engame, while I enjoyed it (although I got there 10-15″ after it started), it didn’t live up to my expectations (this is why I just CAN’T be allowed to look forward to movies!!!). I didn’t care for the plot, it felt kind of “filler.” Plus a bit disappointed in Peter and M.J.’s romance, it felt rushed and not as cute as it should’ve been, perhaps it should’ve been slower and resolved in the next movie.

    Now for the books.

    Then There Were Five and The Four-Story Mistake by Elizabeth Enright. #2 and #3 of the Melendy family, very charming, possibly a bit lower than middle-grade? Except something sad/scary in #3, so parents should preview first.

    The Chief’s Daughter by Rosemary Sutcliff. Another short story, probably the shortest of hers yet.

    Ordeal by Innocence by Agatha Christie. Not my fav.

    Thornyhold by Mary Stewart. Enjoyable, a bit different than her usual.

  • Culture and Entertainment

    What I Watched: April and May 2019

    The Perfect Date. This was so awful I’m ashamed I finished it. The lines were like stereotypes of cliches of stereotypes. Just absolutely mind-numbingly stupid.

    Little Women (modern). This was adorable. I loved the switching between past and current times. I liked the professor and didn’t like Laurie, so I wasn’t near as mad about how things ended up. The portrayal of the March family and their uniqueness was just so stinking cute (also, love the homeschooling). All the individual girls portrayals were great, everyone a good age. The acting wasn’t great, I obviously think Laurie is a character worth doing well, and I wish John and Meg had more time, but since I frequently get so frustrated at how Little Women is portrayed plus the actual story, and this was quite a refreshing little movie.

    Khoobsurat. So, shallow points here, I think my sister and I were talking over attractive actors, and she told me I had to watch this. I’ve never watched a Hindi-language film, so that in itself is interesting. And then the setting, the clothing. The switching between English and Hindi and the switching between the speaking of actual thoughts and speaking was awesome (although confusing at first as I didn’t realize at first some things WERE just thoughts). The main actor is sooo handsome, also the serious type, so super attractive, and the film is just overall hilarious.

    The Proud Rebel. Hamlette mentions Alan Ladd all the time, so I decided to watch some Alan Ladd movies. This was not a hit, I was so bored, not sure why I made myself finish it. I’m still going to watch more of his movies, I’m particularly interested in This Gun for Hire.

    The Matchbreaker. An indie film from my list, I think I skipped a lot, I was mostly into the film for the friend (who was hilarious) and sister romance.

    Avengers: Infinity War. Eh. Mostly explosions and boring fight scenes. I was watching this online and was definitely on other browsers and tabs for much of it.

    The Bachelor and the Bobby Soxer. Cary Grant, Myrna Loy (two of my favorite classics actors but didn’t love them together), and Shirley Temple (what little I saw as a child of her child-acting annoyed me, and she’s still annoying as a teenager, her facial expressions heighten the annoyance, especially as she’s too old for that here). An uncomfortable premise to modern audiences, not any chemistry between leads, not hilarious enough for me.

    The Amazing Adventure. Cute glimpse of a young Cary Grant. His romantic counterpart was boring, but overall the plot was interesting, could be seriously improved upon though.

    Operation Petticoat. Tony Curtis and older Cary Grant (this is the Cary Grant* I saw too much of when I said I didn’t “get” his appeal; he’s good here as like a foil or something to Curtis). Hilarious screwball. Screwball is quite my cup of tea right now.

    When You’re In Love. I need to not watch blah movies just because Cary Grant is in them.

    Talk of the Town. I’m more for Cary Grant screwball comedies, but another person might enjoy this better. I think it’s worth watching for the last scene which I rewatched at least twice more.

    Holiday. I think Cary Grant and Katherine Hepburn have great chemistry. This wasn’t my favorite movie, not quite hysterical enough for me, but I liked it. I’d also have liked it better if I wasn’t fighting with the absolutely awful itunes. Seriously, it was awful. I’m not buying anything on itunes again. The lag is so bad its unwatchable, and they have such stupid protections, so I can’t move the files easily.

    Royal Wedding. I just don’t care for Fred Astaire nor dancing movies too much really, I do admire the talent, but I get bored. I also didn’t find it overall that funny.

    Aladdin. I’m just going to copy paste my comment from Hamlette’s blog. “I didn’t love the animated Aladdin. I know I saw it a couple times growing up, but I’m not sure we owned it, so I didn’t watch it as much. It doesn’t have quite the nostalgia, I guess? Anyway, I didn’t care for it much rewatching it as an adult; the story overall, Jasmine’s brattiness, the Genie’s jarring modernity, Jafar was too much. I love the music though, and I think I’d forgotten about all the songs except “A Whole New World.”

    So, I didn’t thinking I’d see it in theaters. Some of my siblings went (they like the original). Then I heard a clip of Jasmine’s song, and was like,”No, I really need to see this in theaters.” So I did. And I greatly enjoyed it. A lot of what I didn’t like in the original was changed enough plus the overall costuming, setting, etc. is just gorgeous in live-action. Jasmine is SO much better. I loved Will Smith’s Genie and how they blended him into the story both in terms of his actual story and the lessening of the weirdly modern aspect that threw me off in the original. I liked that there was enough change to make the story richer (similar to the ever-perfect similar Cinderella) but not to distract from the story (like in Beauty and the Beast, also, that one was spoiled with star-struckness, too many stars)

    Because I’m me, and because this isn’t Cinderella 2015 (which is the most perfect movie ever made, I kid, maybe) I did have some quibbles, Aladdin’s jarringly modern North American accent. I guess I didn’t realize he grew up in Canada, I feel like his accent stood out more than anyone else’s?

    I think the music and vocals could’ve been better. Except for Jasmine’s song, that blew everything else away.

    …And then there is Jafar’s pipsqueak voice.”

    From Friend to Fiancé. A Hallmark, fun, but not a fav. I feel like a watched or rewatched another Hallmark with Mom, but maybe that was just when we attempted to find one, and I just didn’t care to see any we had. I have one more I want to watch from the Spring, but I’m doing pretty good and not relying on them. However, now I need to nip my mediocre oldies and regular moderns in the bud.

    *I’ve decided there are three Cary Grant “types.” His younger roles are the aware, slightly sarcastic, sweet-idealist types. His middle roles are the more cynical, sometimes oblivious, highly sarcastic types (the more screwball roles, my absolute favorite), and his older roles are the often humorless/not very funny, grouchy types (seriously, he seems like he’s always frowning in many of his older roles).

    Westside Story. Clearly didn’t make too much of an impression on me seeing as how I only remembered I’d watched it after I saw Studio C’s Bollyside Story. Like I said before, not overly crazy about too much dance stuff. Tony, well also Maria in theory, but Natalie Wood is annoying (also NOT Hispanic, neither was Bernard either, which made the love story drama just ridiculous, yeah, I know it was the 60’s but seriously?) were the only people I cared much about. Tony was too pure for that world, didn’t make sense that he’d be best friends with that other dude (who by the way played the precious Gideon in Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, talk about opposite roles).

  • Culture and Entertainment

    What I Watched: March 2019

    I didn’t watch many movies this month, more television mysteries. We geniuses just realized (actually we had to be told), that since my dad has Amazon Prime (for how long I don’t know, probably years including ones when I paid for my own, ouch), we can watch his Prime video. Duh. I don’t love Prime, it’s not worth it to me to pay for it, but since now it’s free, I want to make more of an effort to find things to watch, so I’ve been going through my movie list. Of all the 153 movies I’ve currently checked, about 26 are on Netflix. I discovered Big Country (which I’d not heard of and which I greatly enjoyed) by searching Gregory Peck in the search bar, so I think I should try that option to find more movies/shows not on my list.

    Hallmark

    A couple movie mysteries. I’m happy to state that I’ve not watched Hallmark in weeks though.

    Classics

    Platinum Blonde. Eh, some funny lines, but overall, eh.

    Period Drama

    Middlemarch. Interesting (and awkward, I skimmed parts, intentionally awkward, British authors do know how to write some awkward situations, they just happen to be excruciating to watch). A couple of recognized actors or siblings of actors (of course, I feel like I’ve seen every not-super-famous British actor/actress multiple times, it can be interesting, it can be annoying if you know, Fudge is in everything, that actor IS Fudge in everything). I don’t feel it does the book justice AT ALL. I’m now wanting to reread it again.

    Television

    Monk. I’ve been hearing about this show/meaning to watch it for ages, and I’ve been going through it with my grandparents. It’s so funny and cute, despite being murder mysteries. Thus far, the mystery element hasn’t been great (and that’s saying a lot, I’ve watched Hallmark mysteries), but at least it hasn’t scared me too much. It’s the characters who are interesting. We started at the beginning which was made in 2002, but which if I didn’t know it, I would have said the 90’s since apparently 90’s styles extended into the early 2000’s (ugh). Apparently, 90’s is resurfacing too, but in cuter ways (scrunchies, I still cringe a little though).

  • Culture and Entertainment

    What I Watched: February 2019

    Hallmark
    The Story of Us. Adorable
    Love, Romance, and Chocolate. Adorable
    Hannah’s Law. The has to be one of the dumbest movies Hallmark has ever made. It tried to be a prequel to famous Westerns (just no). And Doc Holliday (see what I mean?) had the worst fake Southern accent I’ve ever heard (also, did such a “courtly” Southern accent, the one he was aiming for, ever exist? I suppose it could’ve, accents have changed so much even in the last 80 years, considering how different people sound in old movies).

    Modern
    The Darkest Hour. I resisted watching this because I wanted a better understanding, but then caved, and asked questions the whole time, and felt that I didn’t get the whole picture/force. I’d prefer to study WWII more in depth. Also, I CANNOT stand historical fiction in movies purporting to display historical fact, and there were a lot of things that didn’t fit in the time period or in the emphasis they gave (the secretary’s role for example and the scene on the train, which was absurdly long). I also though it was a tad melodramatic rather than the appropriate oppressively serious. I’m a bit touchy where the WW’s are concerned, I feel that they’ve been, I don’t know commercialized/glorified/generalized (?) in public consciousness, at least in America and at least the European front (no one in their right mind could glorify the Pacific, but I think it’s been sanitized).
    The King’s Speech. This seemed goofy after the above film. Colin Firth wasn’t at a good match for the prince/king (especially compared to the actor in the above), and he’s just not my favorite.

    Classics
    My Man Godfrey. William Powell is brilliant. This is hilarious.
    The Big Country. This is definitely more of my style Western, definite moral framework, tons of things to discuss. I wanted to rewatch it again right away, I wish I had.

    • Wish Peck could’ve made more of a firm character, I found Heston sexier. Although his standing up to Leech and then that brat Patricia was more of what I wanted, he was too genial about the other things or too quiet or something. The horse thing was foolish (I would say cowardly, he shouldn’t have minded that).
    • I appreciate the definite morals but above
    • I think Charleston Heston might’ve been the Matthew McConaughey of that period . . . I’ve only seen him in two movies but he’s had a shirtless scene in both.
    • Sea Captain? Don’t you filmmakers know that sea captains were as coarse and violent as cowboys, if not worse? Make him an army officer or something, the jokes and jibes and his looks and attitude would’ve made more sense; he was too gentlemanly.
    • Don’t understand what McKay and Patricia had, they had no chemistry; pretty obvious that wasn’t going to last. Patricia was a whiny, childish, shallow, vain, selfish, brat only caring for show (which is, gasp, actually cowardice). Not sure why Leech would’ve cared for her either. Patricia and Julie being friends didn’t make sense either.
    • Buck is a louse. I also dislike that Leech forced a kiss on Patricia, made him look too much like Buck, but Buck looked like he was going to rape Julie.
    • I feel like the feud is never explained, I feel like there needs to be a deeper reason, a woman, a death, or something those men were fighting over.
    • I also wasn’t satisfied with the end. What happened to Leech? The main couple just rides off into the sunset without dealing with the wreckage (which granted isn’t their fault, but seems a little callous considering that they are supposed to be the moral characters).
  • Culture and Entertainment

    What I Watched: January 2019

    Once again, Hallmark craze (or just laziness) takes over.

    Hallmarks
    Jingle Around the Clock. Cute except for a period of slanderous jumping to conclusions.
    A Midnight Kiss. He acted, she was non-human. And the writing/plot was dull.
    Winter Castle. Cute.
    One Winter Proposal. Cute. This was a sequel and actually ended up good. It won’t beat the first, but it was decent (my only Hallmark sequels previously, that I can remember, were the awful All of My Heart ones)
    A Winter Princess. Cute.
    Winter Love Story. The girl who plays in this always plays whiny, selfish, bratty, petty idiots. This was no exception.
    Snowcoming. The girl in here is an awful actress and the couple had NO chemistry which is too bad since this had the possibility to be good with better acting and writing, the concept was really sweet.

    Classics
    The Shop Around the Corner. I’d been meaning to watch this, but our library didn’t have it; I watched it on Google Play with a $0.99 deal (I watched You’ve Got Mail and now I need to watch In the Good Old Summertime). Um, I adore watching Jimmy Stuart, he is so handsome (until he aged to ancient in his 40’s!), but man, the girl is this is AWFUL. She’s shallow, petty, cruel, doesn’t look his age, she’s not pretty, yet she is absolutely cruel and snotty and bullying to him about his looks and mind and worth. And he still likes her and wants to be with her?! Definitely disappointing.

  • Culture and Entertainment

    Movies I’ve Watched: November 2018

    I’m going to leave off Hallmark so I can do a larger Christmas post of them

    Vintage

    The Philadelpia Story. My sister-in-law mentioned how funny this was, so I was rather disappointed. I didn’t find it all that funny. There were a few funny bits, but most of it was boring, and some parts made be angry (e.g. her absolutely horrid father who blames her for his immorality).

    Breakfast at Tiffany’s. This was interesting and funny in parts a bit tedious in others. Paul is basically the Ken doll in human form. Okay, not that bad, I found him attractive. But yes, Ken. I think the movies should’ve ended before it did (a bit after her brother dies if not before); Holly ends up looking rather rotten at the end. Skipped Mickey Rooney’s racist  scenes.

    Some Like it Hot. Funny, and oh, my word, uncomfortable. A couple of not-very-brave and possibly not very bright musicians (well, Joe’s not, Joe was quite clever when he wanted, the lies that boy told to get Sugar to chase him and to kiss him more . . . Jerry on the other hand, Jerry was demented) witness a mass gang machine gun murder (please, not this is NOT what I expected, I thought like one person was shot with like a pistol or something, so just FYI, and this happens twice!!). So these guys (and to heighten the ludicrousness of it, the filmmakers picked the most manly built guys ever, broad shoulders, muscular limbs) dress up like women to escape. And of course they both are interested in the same girl (Marilyn Monroe who is, another warning, dressed or rather undressed rather worse than a tramp . . . if you think modern movies are bad . . . ). . . and are rather creeps. I thought it funny, but not hysterical, not a favorite.

    Animated

    The Lego Batman Movie. Fairly funny (in a super goofy way) at first, then tedious and sanctimonious for the rest.