Calvary*, 2014

B. Gleeson, Calvary/image: redcarpets.com

B. Gleeson, Calvary/image: redcarpets.com

Brendan Gleeson has some acting chops. He’s got such a believable style and It doesn’t seem like he’s acting. I can’t really articulate it but he’s truly gifted at his craft. Also, I think just about every movie I’ve seem him in he steals the show. He’s who I always remember, and he is an awesome leading man with a co starring man’s face. And in this latest John Michael McDonagh film, he’s much of the same kind of first-rate actor as in earlier films, like Gangs of New York, In Bruges, and Edge of Tomorrow all films where he is in a co-starring role.  It’s nice when actors can go from leading man to co star and back again with ease. 

The Premise…

Set in Ireland Gleeson, plays the main character Father James Lavelle, a catholic priest who joined the monastery late in life, after he was married with a child. The reason he was able to become a priest, is because his wife had died and his daughter was grown. As he made his vows after all that happened which is something that didn’t seem possible in the catholic church but maybe so? So as he goes through is days of helping his parish by doing his normal priestly duties like, going into the confession room, and helping people in hospital with the loss of a loved one. He’s faced with a proposition and is threatened with his life, and not for anything bad that he’s done as a priest but this person has something against him. As he seems pretty sure of who it is they didn’t show their face so he can’t be certain.

B. Gleeson, K. Reilly/image: www.nola.com

B. Gleeson, K. Reilly/image: http://www.nola.com

The writer/director John M. McDonagh makes pretty twisted black comedies, and usually his work is interesting. But here the movie is long and slow-moving, and not in a way that is entertaining. It kind of drags on and on. Of McDonagh’s earlier work like, In Bruges, The Guard, Seven Psychopaths, and now Calvary, this film is the least fun to watch. Mostly because Gleeson is carrying the film on his shoulders, and there are so many other actors in the film not doing much of anything but complaining. First there’s his daughter, Kelly Reilly then the butcher, Chris O’Dowd, and the forensics specialist, Aidan Gillen,  etc.

The Sum Up…

By the time you get to the end of the movie you’re so ready for something to happen it’s almost too much. Also, all the character’s in the film convey an utter disdain for the catholic church or just religion in general, that you kind of wonder why did McDonagh want to write this movie? I wasn’t sure of the message or the plot. With quite a big cast I expected more, that said, every scene that Gleeson is in is pretty exceptional but the material didn’t have legs or anything real to say. With it’s very good cinematography, and interesting characters, I wish the writing was clearer. This is unfortunate too because I’m an avid fan of McDonagh’s work. This movie overall gets a B ~ NOTE WORTHY, see either in theaters or on DVD but see it. For the wonderful acting by Gleeson. It also gets a Safety Alert, for language, subject matter and some disturbing scenes of violence which is classic McDonagh style, not a family film by far, this movie is rated R.

American Cancer Society Is A NO!!!!

ACS

Breaking The Ice: Is there a cause — social, political, cultural, or other — you passionately believe in? Tell us how you got involved — or why you don’t get involved.

Why won’t I get involved with this organization? Because I don’t think they are trying to find a cure for cancer. I think they are just taking people’s money. Because I believe there is already a cure. These guys are pirates who head this so-called cause. I just read now as I’m writing this post that most of the money that goes to this org. is for salaries to run it!!! WHAT???? Here’s an excerpt from the website, Cancer Prevention Coalition, By Samuel S. Epstein M. D., published in: International Journal of Health Services Vol. 29, No. 3, 1999.

Most of the funds raised by the ACS go to pay overhead, salaries, fringe benefits, and travel expenses of its national executives in Atlanta.

Nationally, only 16 percent or less of all money raised is spent on direct services to cancer victims, like driving cancer patients from the hospital after chemotherapy and providing pain medication.

There are many more proofs but those are just 2 that stood out for this post at the moment, it just hurts because when I was a kid, my mom spent lot’s of money supporting this org. and when she actually was diagnosed with cancer she was not helped by this org. at all. Nor did any doctor suggest them for help with her kind of cancer. As all her doctor’s offered her is Chemotherapy which eventually didn’t work and she passed away at 50 being diagnosed at 48, so 16 months from diagnoses she was gone.

This is an outrage, the other aspect of this is curing cancer holistically. These people who run this ACS program only advocate the, Too little, too late method of therapy, which mostly involves chemotherapy and radiation treatments, then hoping for the best.  Where as, if treated holistically, you can actively be part of the cure by changing your diet and not putting further poison in your body. The biggest problem with doing this is, it doesn’t pay doctor salaries, so most medical doctors will counsel people against this method. As it also will not be funded by your medical insurance. I could just go on and on about this but I will stop and say, this org. is a shady bunch and my dollars will not go to them to fatten their pockets and not really help people who are ill and desperate to live.

Redwood Highway, 2013**

S. Knight/image: roguevalleymessenger.com

S. Knight/image: roguevalleymessenger.com

The Premise…

The movie starts out with Marie Vaughn, Shirley Knight a woman in her late 70’s walking, she looks like she’s getting exercise at first, then later you see her walking into a retirement home and you realize she’s unhappy there. Then it looks more like she’s getting in shape for something. The next time you see her, she’s visited by her son, Michael, James Le Gros, letting him know she is extremely unhappy in her current situation and she feels he’s responsible for it. As he gives her the news that her grand-daughter is getting married, she decides after he leaves to go to her grand-daughter’s wedding on her own to tell her grand daughter to be careful with this guy. So we go with her as she embarks on sneaking out of the retirement home, and walks 80 miles to the coast of Oregon, for her grand daughter’s wedding.

Young S. Knight/image: en.wikipedia.org

A young S. Knight/image: en.wikipedia.org

Shirley Knight is a wonderful actor who’s been doing her craft for probably 50 years. Her most memorable role for me was as Helen Hunt‘s mother in 1997’s, As Good As It Gets. She’s very good at being uncomfortable with getting old. As she does this perfectly here and for some reason the movie billing is shared with Tom Skerritt but he’s only in the movie for maybe 10 minutes. She’s also been in classics like Tennessee Williams, Sweet Bird Of Youth, 1962, with Paul Newman, and Geraldine Page.

Redwood Highway is very good for families to watch about aging parents and retirement homes. In the next 20 years, when all the generation x’rs start getting ready to retire, there probably won’t be enough retirement homes available and children will have to hire caregiver’s which is probably better for retirees anyway and more cost-effective.

The Sum Up…

This movie is very relevant for today with its hard look at getting older and what this means for families. Being that I’m a caregiver in life I can relate to the issues of caring for a senior. I liked the independent feel of this movie and the acting specifically Shirley Knight. She carried the movie and I never got tired of watching her. This movie gets an  A ~ THEATER WORTHY, see this in theaters it’s that good. But it’s on Netflix streaming so you can catch it there it’s not in theaters anymore. With no Safety Alert, this one the whole family can see but it will probably only be interesting to adults, I also just read the movie is based on a true story and it’s rated PG13.

WPC: Baby Ladybug In Silhouette

baby ladybug Silhouette 2

My ladybug after waking up in the morning, she would have been about 1 year old. She looks like a poor kid in jail right here. This pic makes me laugh.

Ladybug, Ladybug how did you fare?

Standing in a shadow in your cute Carters PJ’s and underwear.

Ladybug, Ladybug I think you just could,

have been the sweetest baby in the whole wide world. 

white ladybug sign

Wow, Really Robin Williams???

Understandably, he was really hurting, to commit suicide. However, let’s not skim over the fact that he committed suicide. I mean my goodness, this is a serious thing to take you’re own life, for any reason. It just seems like he could have done something very good with his life even though he might have struggled with Parkinson’s Disease. This was ABSOLUTELY the wrong solution to the problem. I guess people can chalk his life up to being a cautionary tale of what fame can do and how empty it can leave you. (more…)

Guardians Of The Galaxy*

Z. Saldana, B. Cooper, C. Pratt, V. Diesel, D. Bautista/image: hitflix.com

Z. Saldana, B. Cooper, C. Pratt, V. Diesel, D. Bautista/image: hitflix.com

Chris Pratt is becoming a pretty good actor, and before his work in the movies, he seemed like the guy who got a big break with no real acting skills. When he started on the TV show Parks and Recreation I thought he was kind of funny but very stupid in his role. Even though his role was to be exactly that. And the writing of his character on the show seemed to get more and more ridiculous which made me feel sorry for him being useless on the show. Then I saw him in Moneyball and thought this role showed substance and that it wasn’t pure luck getting cast in the Parks and Recs series. So overall he’s ameliorated his skills and taking acting more seriously, and he was honestly the best thing about the Lego Movie.

The Premise…

The movie opens with Star Lord, Chris Pratt a salvage guy, who’s hired to find an orb. When he finds the orb on a abandon planet, he’s ambushed by an evil underling named Korath, Djimon Hounsou of Roman The Accuser, Lee Pace. Roman wants the orb to do many evil things and take over the galaxy of course. So when Korath is unsuccessful at retrieving the goods, he gets Gamora, Zoe Saldana to get it from Star Lord, by using her green feminine charms. 

As Star Lord gets back to his home planet to deliver the orb, he finds the guy who hired him no longer wants the orb since Roman is after it. So SL enlists some help to get it to the highest bidder for the best reward money. This is wear he gets his team of, Gamora, Drax, Dave Bautista, Groot, Vin Diesel voice, and Rocket, Bradley Cooper voice . So with his team in play who eventually embark on Guarding the galaxy, from the evil doer’s even though unbeknownst to SL, he may have a turn coat in his ranks.

C. Pratt, look what a little working can do./image: buzzsugar.com

C. Pratt, look what a little working out can do. :) /image: buzzsugar.com

This movie was entertaining and yet it was pretty much the same story as most, Marvel Comic movies.  As Stan Lee always manages to make a cameo, and the plot’s formula is much like, Captain America, Iron Man, and Thor. The funny part of the movie was the main character was somewhat of a nitwit as were some of the other team members, which let the audience know not to take these hero’s too seriously. Meanwhile, Chris Pratt is going to get typecast as the big dumb guy if he’s not careful and it might make it hard for him to ever do serious work. Which might be fine with him, but it makes his acting range a little monotonous.

The Sum Up…

It’s always nice to see co-star characters like John C. Reilly, Corpsman Dey, and Benicio Del Toro, as The Collector doing their part to make the movie fun. Also, the director and writer of this film James Gunn did a great job with it’s comedic dialog it had some very funny and awkward moments that really gave the film some legs. I give this one a B ~ NOTE WORTHY, see either in theaters or on DVD but see it. It’s fun for the family as everyone will have a good time and it’s a nice way to close out the summer blockbusters. With some crude jokes and some language, there’s no Safety Alert here. There were a few fight scenes that got tedious but over all it kept my interest. Also, for some reason in all of my criticism of Chris Pratt I really do like him as a leading man I would just like to see more range in his body of work, this movie is rated PG13.

***Also, everything highlighted in aqua means that you can click on the link name to see the stats and picture of the actor from IMDB or Wiki.***

Okay, My Phone Does What Again?

 

My Android model.

My Android model.

Second Opinion: What are some (or one) of the things about which you usually don’t trust your own judgment, and need someone’s else’s confirmation?

This prompt made it incredibly easy to come up with a subject. When I think about electronics and what I want mine to do I call on a great expert who is a master at figuring out what specs I need. My daughter should get paid to help people with this when it comes to a phone or computer.

She is good at looking at cost, and what the device does, as well as how well I can maneuver it. She thinks about if I need certain things because I’m not the most electronic savvy, but mainly since she knows me, so she implores me not to make a purchase without her guidance because usually I don’t do so well when I go rogue on her and try to be cute and independent. She warns against this all the time and my latest rogue act got me into trouble and I ended up buying 2 smartphones because the first wasn’t advanced enough for me and because I used it for a month, I didn’t take it back for a refund. I gave it to her for a friend because they didn’t have the money for one. Her exact words were, “Mom, I told you, not to make any purchases until you check with me ok?” And now I really try to listen because, money doesn’t grow on trees (I love this cliche).

white ladybug sign

WPC: Texture

Guest photographer Natalia Maks invites you to find unexpected textures in the world around you.


I haven’t done a Photo Challenge in sometime. I haven’t been inspired until today I guess. And I just happened to have some texture pics floating around in my computer from early this year Jan ~ March.

Big Leafy Bush

Big leafy bush I couldn't find the name.

Big leafy bush I couldn’t find the name.

Rain Finally

The first of rain in 47 days.

The first rain in 47 days.

March Showers

Roses after rain are beautiful.

Roses after rain are beautiful.

Happening Now

Writer’s Block Party: When was the last time you experienced writer’s block? What do you think brought it about — and how did you dig your way out of it?

It’s funny this is the topic question because, I’m having writer’s block now and can I just say it isn’t a party. I’ve had it since the beginning of the year and without these prompts I think my blog would just turn into a movie review blog. I think my problem stems from, my daughter getting married last year. So yes I will blame it on her. Since she doesn’t need my help and she is with her husband, and I my writing material has just dried up.

The great thing that is happening in a few weeks is, I’m going on vacation to Southern CA. My hometown, to visit old friends and see the sights from my childhood. Which should help me get back on track. I’m going to be taking an enormous amount of pics so my material should be fresh. I may even go see a movie at the landmark theater in Hollywood, The Chinese Theater, to take pics and remind myself of how fun it was to go there as a kid back in the day. Maybe I will also see the Hollywood sign and visit the Observatory on the hill. I’m excited and I hope to have more to write about soon.

Mix In Matchin Food

Unlikely Pairing: Bacon and chocolate, caramel and cheddar… Is there an unorthodox food pairing you really enjoy? Share with us the weirdest combo you’re willing to admit that you like — and how you discovered it.

I have a couple of food combo’s that maybe pretty non traditional. I’ve heard other people mixing the first two before but I’m not sure about the second two.

Chocolate shake and French Fries/image: kitchendaily.ca

Chocolate shake and French Fries/image: kitchendaily.ca

Chocolate shakes and French Fries, is one of my all time favorites. When I was pregnant with my daughter, in my 8th month I had to have this combination. And like clockwork as soon as I finished eating it, I would get sick. I’m not sure what happens to a woman mentally during this time but the body goes into a crazy, demanding mode that makes us do things we wouldn’t normally do. Those hormones are relentless!!!

Then there’s hot movie popcorn and red Licorice. This I found one day when I was watching some movie. I just remember putting a hand full of popcorn in my mom’s hand and told her to eat it then bite her licorice stick and she loved it too.

Red Licorice and popcorn/image: greenmunch.ca

Red Licorice and popcorn/image: greenmunch.ca