Showing posts from 2016

I've fallen in love...

I've fallen in love with the magic of Disney. Obviously, I love movies. Did you know that the entrance to the Magic Kingdom is designed as if you are stepping inside a movie? It's true. When you walk through the tunnel under the train station at the front entrance, there are "movie" posters for various rides and attractions throughout the park. Then, when you emerge out the other side, there are vendors selling popcorn. The air is filled with the sweet smell of candy and popcorn, which is deliberately like the smell of a movie theater lobby. Then, you step inside the magic and imagination of storytelling with each section of the Magic Kingdom after that.

Here's a video of us traveling to Disney World and visiting EPCOT. The second part of that day we went to the Magic Kingdom, but I haven't posted that video yet.

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In the mean time, enjoy this video   :)

We went to EPCOT and loved it!!!


Pete's Dragon Review 2016

Pete's Dragon is the latest live-action remake of an animated classic. It is directed by David Lowery, who has directed a handful of mostly art films. The most recent thing was a 2013 movie called Ain't Them Bodies Saints.

Pete's Dragon is one part Tarzan, one part The Jungle Book, and even a splash of E.T. This is mostly to good effect. It is not a perfect movie, but it was entertaining, and should be very compelling and memorable for children.

It overlaps heavily with the animated cartoon original. Pete is a young boy who was in a car wreck deep in the forest. He wanders from the wreckage and gets found by a magical dragon he names Elliot. Elliot essentially raises him in a magical forest dragon lair.

Pete's Dragon also has a stellar cast. It's replete with Bryce Dallas Howard, Wes Bentley, Karl Urban, and a wonderful performance by Robert Redford.

The story of fantasy and whimsy are wonderful. The E.T. elements are great as far as instilling a sense of wonder an…

Cafe Society Review

Cafe Society is a wonderful, refreshing original from classic writer / director
Woody Allen. If you don't know anything about Woody Allen, you'll probably watch this movie and scratch your head with confusion. However, if you're familiar with his movies, you will love it.

The official description of Cafe Society from Perdido Pictures is:

Set in the 1930s, Woody Allen's bittersweet romance CAFÉ SOCIETY follows Bronx-born Bobby Dorfman (Jesse Eisenberg) to Hollywood, where he falls in love, and back to New York, where he is swept up in the vibrant world of high society nightclub life. Centering on events in the lives of Bobby's colorful Bronx family, the film is a glittering valentine to the movie stars, socialites, playboys, debutantes, politicians, and gangsters who epitomized the excitement and glamour of the age.

1. Woody Allen always has someone play him
Mr. Allen is now 81 years old. It is quite spectacular that he is still writing and directing a movie every…

Ghostbusters 2016 - My Two Cents

The awkward storm of political sexism controversy surrounding the new Ghostbusters has calmed down almost completely. The most hated movie trailer on the internet is mostly in everyone's rearview mirror now.

After reading all the hate for this movie, I wasn't going to see it. But, a friend of mine really wanted to see it, so I gave it a shot. The result was a very pleasant surprise.

Generally, I hated the controversy that happened. Director Paul Feig, in my opinion, was inappropriate when he bashed "fans" and "geeks" on Twitter, calling them horrible names. There are some elements of the new Ghostbusters movie where his contempt for the very fans who love the original Ghostbusters is obvious. For example, making the new movie as a reboot rather than a sequel was the first slap in the face. I thought this was where the movie was most lacking, and my least favorite thing about it.

However, I was happy to find that there are more positives to the new Ghostbus…

Zoolander 2: Out on DVD for some reason

Zoolander 2 is the sequel to a goofy comedy from 2001. The first Zoolander was directed by Ben Stiller, and produced by VH1. I still make goofy quotes from the first one, because I am old. Who could forget goofy little lines like "That Hansel is SO hot right now!" (proclaimed by a whacky villain named Mugatu played by Will Ferrel.) And, "blue steel", "eugoogly", and many other little catchphrases stick in my mind from that original. And, speaking of original, the first Zoolander caught everyone off guard because not only was it hilarious, it was full of its own style and edginess. I never realized just how cutting edge the mockery of the fashion world was way back in 2001 when this first one came out. But, when I saw Zoolander 2 and realized just how flat, out of touch, and stale it all felt, I realized how valuable the first Zoolander was. To be fair, there were a couple of lukewarm chuckles to be found in this crap. Like, the Justin Bieber cameo. And Be…

Captain America: Civil War

Official movie description:

"Marvel's "Captain America: Civil War" finds Steve Rogers leading the newly formed team of Avengers in their continued efforts to safeguard humanity. But after another incident involving the Avengers results in collateral damage, political pressure mounts to install a system of accountability, headed by a governing body to oversee and direct the team. The new status quo fractures the Avengers, resulting in two camps-one led by Steve Rogers and his desire for the Avengers to remain free to defend humanity without government interference, and the other following Tony Stark's surprising decision to support government oversight and accountability."

Captain America: Cvil War is an incredible, sprawling, and effective superhero movie. You can't take any of those descriptors for granted these days with all the superhero movies that hit theaters.

I love how all the superheroes were integrated into the story in a way that makes sense. …

The Jungle Book (2016)

Official movie description:

"In this reimagining of the classic collection of stories by Rudyard Kipling, director Jon Favreau uses visually stunning CGI to create the community of animals surrounding Mowgli (Neel Sethi), a human boy adopted by a pack of wolves. The appearance of a villainous tiger named Shere Khan (voiced byIdris Elba) forces Mowgli's guardian, the panther Bagheera (Ben Kingsley), to shepherd the child to safety in the "man village." Along the way, the boy meets an affable, lazy bear named Baloo (Bill Murray), as well as a snake with hypnotic powers (Scarlett Johansson) and an orangutan (Christopher Walken) who wants to harness the power of fire. Lupita Nyong'o, Giancarlo Esposito, and Garry Shandling also lend their voices to this adventure tale."

The Jungle Book is my FAVORITE summer movie of 2016 so far! What a wonderful time we live in where special effects have evolved to such an amazing state. The Jungle Book makes me believe anything…

Hello, My Name is Doris

Official Movie Description: 

"When Doris Miller meets John Fremont, her company's hip new art director, sparks fly-at least for Doris. In the cluttered house she shared with her late mother, Doris mines the Internet for information on her one-and-only, guided by the 13-year-old granddaughter of her best pal Roz. When Doris begins showing up at John's regular haunts, she wins over his Williamsburg friends. Her new life brings Doris a thrilling perspective, but also creates a rift between her and her longtime friends and family, who believe she's making a fool of herself over a guy half her age. Eager for all the experiences she has missed out on, Doris throws caution to the wind and follows her heart for the very first time."

This is the type of indie that is constructed to be a vehicle for a legendary pop culture actor/actress to shine. In this case, it's Sally Field. They obviously market this movie to showcase her "amazing performance" as a "s…

Crazy fun times!!! Disney World!

It's the beginning of summer, and there's a slew of movies worth reviewing. Come back tomorrow for my review of the indie film comedy Hello, My Name is Doris, starring Sally Field as Doris. Many other reviews and movie lists on the way, too.

I've been busy! Please take a few minutes and enjoy this latest video of Disney World. Also, it would mean a lot to us if you subscribed to our Youtube page:

The vlog is called Two Cats and a Mouse. Our two cats are Apple and Olive. And, the mouse is Mickey Mouse, of course! My wife and I go to Disney and record our trips just for fun.


Zootopia is a beautiful and fun tale about Judy Hopps, a sweet little bunny with big dreams of becoming a police officer. She's from a small farming town, (growing carrots, of course), so being a police officer in a big city surrounded by predators seems far out of reach. When she arrives on the scene in the sprawling city of Zootopia, she meets a con artist fox named Nick. They must work together to solve an urgent mystery.

Zootopia has a lot going for it. There's action, funny characters and jokes, a sweet message about love and acceptance, and incredible visuals. Disney strikes again with the same studio that created Brave, Tangled, Wreck-it-Ralph,  Big Hero 6, and Frozen. The concept of animals living together in a world of predators and prey is adorable and fun.

Yet, despite all it has going for it, I didn't love Zootopia. I certainly liked it. But, love is such a strong word. After the emotional powerhouse of Inside Out last year, Zootopia left me feeling a bit like s…

Top 5 Movies Featuring Cats

I love cats. Many people share my love! One of the basic guide rules for actors is never act with kids or animals. These are the best cinematic examples of movies where actors straight up broke that rule for the love of cats. Did I miss any cat classics? Let me know in the comments!

5. The Adventures of Milo and Otis (1986)
This adorable children's movie follows the adventure of a little orange kitty named Milo and a dog named Otis. So, even if you're more of a dog lover, you'll still appreciate this one. This little gem was originally made for Japanese tv, and was re-dubbed with English and heavily edited for a "happier" story line for Americans. WARNING: This movie may break the Adorable-O-Meter. Don't say I didn't warn you.

4. Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey (1993)
The voices of Sally Field, Michael J. Fox, and Don Ameche bring these adorable little critters to life. A golden retriever, a bulldog, and yes,...a meow meow kitty are all on another…

Best Movies for Spring

The air warms, the days get longer, the sky gets bluer, and the sun gets brighter. I love spring! I've put together a list of movies that are perfect for that time of year.

5. Alice In Wonderland (2010)
Lewis Carroll's wickedly imaginative novel gets the modern Tim Burton spin. Critics are a bit split over this one, but I have found Alice in Wonderland to be a fun, richly creative, and visually beautiful take on the book. It ain't Gone With the Wind, but it's a wonderful spring time movie with enough visual power and story interest to get multiple views.

Also, Disney is blessing the world with a sequel, Alice In Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass.  It's coming out in May 2016.

4. The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)
Wes Anderson paints is cinematic worlds with bold colors and fun characters. Grand Budapest is a great spring movie for it's palette of gorgeous colors, humorous levity, quirky story, and memorable characters played by a stellar cast.

3. Mary Poppins

Batman Vs Superman Final Trailer

I don't like to post many reviews that aren't exactly movie reviews, but I believe this is a special circumstance.

Yesterday the world was blessed with the latest and final trailer from Batman Vs Superman: Dawn of Justice. At this point, it's no secret that Wonder Woman becomes a key player in the movie. And, some form of beast that is probably Doomsday made an appearance in the second trailer.

The very first trailer released for Batman Vs. Superman was fairly good. It had an ominous feel, a captivating tone, and just enough imagery to spark imaginations and speculations of nerds everywhere. ("The red capes are coming...")  Then, the second trailer was released, and I began to lose hope in this movie. Honestly, it was cheesy. Jesse Eisenberg, who plays Lex Luthor, had a totally cheesy scene where he introduces Clark Kent and Bruce Wayne. Bruce Wayne is driving some kind of 1920's cartoon car, and there's a scene at the end when Wonder Woman shows up in fa…

Two Cats and a Mouse: My Disney World Video!

I love Disney World. In fact, you may have read my earlier blog entry about the best movies to watch to prepare for a trip to Disney. My wife and I made a fun travel video, so watch and enjoy!

And here is a little intro video we made for our new Youtube page:

Best Movies of the 2010's (so far)

We're half way through the 2010's decade, and so much has evolved already! We've witnessed the end of the Harry Potter era, a new Peter Jackson directed JRR Tolkien trilogy, so many new superhero movies, a resurgence in the independent film genre, and....brace yourselves....a new Star Wars trilogy has begun!

With so much going on in the first half of the decade, I thought it would be a good idea to break down the best movies so far. This will illuminate where Hollywood is headed, and were we've been. And, of course, this is just my opinion. Please let me know if I've left anything off the list!

11. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013)
When the first Hunger Games came out, I was pleasantly surprised by how engaging, interesting, and creative it was. And, it put Jennifer Lawrence on the map in a big way. In Catching Fire, the first sequel, everything feels tighter, more confident, smoother, and more coherent. The series really hit its peak in this one. One could argu…

Oscar Predictions 2016

My predictions for Oscar wins are in bold.

Leave a comment with your own predictions or let know if I'm right or wrong!

Best Actor

Bryan Cranston - Trumbo
Matt Damon - The Martian
Leonardo Dicaprio - The Revenant
Michael Fassbender - Steve Jobs
Eddie Redmayne - The Danish Girl

Without a doubt, this is Leo's year!

Best Supporting Actor

Christian Bale - The Big Short
Tom Hardy - The Revenant
Mark Ruffalo - Spotlight
Mark Rylance - Bridge of Spies
Sylvester Stallone - Creed

Just give Stallone the trophy already!

Best Actress

Cate Blanchett - Carol
Brie Larson - Room
Jennifer Lawrence - Joy
Charlotte Rampling - 45 Years
Saoirse Ronan - Brooklyn

Very incredible and deserving. However, it could still be J.Law.

Best Supporting Actress

Jennifer Jason Leigh - The Hateful Eight
Rooney Mara - Carol
Rachel McAdams - Spotlight
Alicia Vikander - The Danish Girl
Kate Winslet - Steve Jobs

 I haven't seen The Hateful Eight, and this is totally just a guess, but she seems completely transformed in …

You haven't seen Brooklyn yet???

           Brooklyn is a beautiful and moving story about a young girl moving from Ireland to Brooklyn in the early 1950's. She has a mediocre and unsatisfying life in Ireland working in a local bakery and feeling the urge to explore new things in her early 20's. This is particularly tough for her mother and older sister, Rose. But, they support her because they know she has so much potential and they respect her youth. Also, that was apparently a difficult economic time in Ireland.
     Once in Brooklyn, Eilis Lacey (played by Saoirse Ronan in an Oscar nominated performance) suffers homesickness and struggles to connect with anyone around her. It isn't long, though, until meaningful and fun friendships and relationships begin to form.

     The striking thing about Brooklyn is that it has a certain elegance. The writing, editing, and gorgeous pastel landscapes drew me into a bygone era. It was a wonderful feeling of being totally absorbed in a movie and forgetting that I …

Inside Out: biggest Oscar snub this year?

Inside Out has been nominated for Best Animated Feature. And, it has some interesting competition in that category, including writer Charlie Kaufman's Anomalisa, an odd stop-motion animated drama made for adults. You can read about all the Animated Feature nominees on the official Oscars page by clicking here.

While I'm happy Inside Out has been recognized in this category, THIS IS THE BIGGEST OSCAR SNUB IN A LONG TIME!!!!! IT SHOULD BE NOMINATED FOR BEST PICTURE! Why??? Because -

1. It has a 98%on Rotten Tomatoes! Come on! Inside Out scored big with critics, Disney fans, and general movie audiences. I know the Academy doesn't choose movies based purely on their ratings, but the ratings are a strong showing of how popular or well-received a movie is by the world. This 98% is coming from movie critics, many of whom may even be eligible to vote on movies for Oscars. So, what happened? Why didn't Inside Out  get nominated for Best Picture? 
2. UP and Toy Story 3UP has the s…

Best Movies to watch to prepare for Disney World

I LOVE the happiest place on Earth! Disney World is one of my favorite places in the world. Walt Disney was obviously an epic visionary, and his passion for theme parks and movies overlapped. Over the years, the movies have heavily inspired the theme parks, and the theme parks have  heavily inspired the movies.

If you take your kids, or if you're like me and you go as an adult, it's fun and valuable to watch certain movies in preparation for your visit to the parks. Some of the movie references in the parks are from the 1960's, or even older. If you're 30 or younger, some of the symbolism, shows, and even rides might not make sense. This makes watching them before a visit extremely fun and valuable. But, even if you've seen these movies in the past, it's still a blast to watch them right before you visit the parks.

There are probably hundreds of Disney shows and movies you could watch before your epic journey to the parks, but I've narrowed it down to the m…

All Star Wars movies ranked

The scene is the mid-1980's. In a dark basement in a suburban house in middle Tennessee, I sat on a sofa in a room with woodgrain walls and shaggy orange carpet watching VHS tapes on a fat 80's television. It was here that my family and friends periodically rented each Star Wars movie in the original trilogy and a young boy (spoiler - me) fell in love with a galaxy far far away. Adventure, innocence, and imagination were the hallmarks of this legendary series.

Now it's 2016, and we've just started the third Star Wars trilogy with the Force Awakens. With all the controversy of the prequels, the aging of the original trilogy, and the latest trilogy starting, where do the movies stand now? Well, I'll tell you! This is how I rank all the Star Wars movies from worst to best.

7. Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones -
After the backlash of the Phantom Menace disaster, George Lucas and crew went back to the drawing board to slap together this mess. Reeling from neg…

Favorite Movies of 2015

We are well into 2016 now, and I've had time to look back on the whacky year that was 2015. The year was a solid mix of sublime and horrendous. Today I'm giving you my favorites of the year. Leave a comment and let me know if you agree or disagree. Now, here's the countdown:

7. Jurassic World

   Barely making this year's countdown is the soft reboot of the classic dinosaur series. I don't think it's quite fair to call Jurassic World a "soft reboot", because it's a pure sequel. It picks up in the year 2015, in real time, as if the first Jurassic Park happened in the early 90's. I loved that aspect of it. I also loved Chris Pratt's semi-breakout performance (post Guardians of the Galaxy) as a leading action star. Dallas Bryce Howard is also one of my favorite actresses. 

Jurassic World is a tad cheesy. However, it's full of imagination, grand scale, and wonderfully ambitious special effects. I love the gyro-spheres and the monorail. Also, w…