In today’s society people are obsessed with pictures. Now there is even an invention called a “selfie stick” yes, this is a real thing. It is exactly what it sounds like. It is a damn stick with clamps on the end. I have heard of these things but never thought that anyone in their right mind would ever buy an expensive stick with clamps. But arriving at Disneyland negated my logical thoughts as there were a huge number of groups walking around using their “Selfie sticks.” And let me tell you, that is a hilarious thing to watch. Continue reading Hilariously Epic Celebrity Photobombs
The biggest event in American sports takes place in a little over a week. Whether you like football or not chances are that you will see part of the game or at the very least hear about it. I am of course talking about the Super Bowl. I have found several things to be true about those who watch this game. Most people fall into one of a few categories of the Super Bowl audience. Continue reading Categories of the Sports Fan: Super Bowl Mania
This is a rave review for a movie that a lot of people did not like. It’s based on a musical I loved that a number of people did not like. The music was composed by a genius who leaves a lot of people cold. Such is the magic and mixed reviews of INTO THE WOODS.
Here are the three biggest complaints I hear from people about the movie: 1) It’s too long. 2) It’s too short. (They cut stuff out.) 3) There is too much singing (it is a musical… shocking)
SIDE NOTE: In the musical, act one ends with everyone seemingly living happily ever after. Act two spins all that on its head. When the musical was first tried out in San Diego, people thought the end of the first act was the end of the show. Sondheim himself had to go out to the parking lot every night and tell people to go back to the theater, there was more.
Sondheim’s music is intricate and I have to say that for me, personally, there are times when I’m awestruck by his work and other times when there are songs I do not like very much. And then a song like “No One Is Alone” comes along and he tears my heart out like no other song has.
In the case of the movie version of INTO THE WOODS, none of the basic complaints bothered me. I knew the story going in; I knew it was more song heavy than most musicals, so those weren’t concerns.
But I had my own trepidations before seeing the film. I always hate that studios insist movie stars be cast in musicals, even if they’re not as good or as right as the Broadway cast. Russell Crowe in LES MIS…. seriously? And I saw that Meryl Streep was playing the witch. Of course she was. Hollywood thinks Meryl Streep can just do anything. Who cares if she can sing? Her singing in Mama Mia, though not bad by any means, was also not overly impressive. But you know what? She can sing. Beautifully. And she found just the right tone of humor and heartbreak. She made every moment work. Damn her. She CAN do anything. Her voice knocked me over.
The rest of the cast was equally sparkling. Emily Blunt – wow. Anna Kendrick – give me her over Anne Hathaway. James Corden – what the hell is he doing giving up a movie career that’s about to take off to do a late night talk show on CBS? Chris Pine – a pleasantly decent musical comedy surprise. Tracey Ullman – another one who has so much talent and skill that she can do whatever she feels like.
But since INTO THE WOODS is set in a fantasy world, the singing felt organic. I bought it. And the fact that I love the songs themselves also helped I’m sure.
Rob Marshall, who did an amazing job of adapting CHICAGO for the screen, was the perfect director for this project. And James Lapine, who wrote the libretto did the screenplay. What a concept – letting the writer who best understands the material write the movie.
It is when the cameras stop shooting that these movie stars really finally get to unwind and enjoy their break time resulting in some pretty great pictures. These behind the scenes photos of actors on set my just change your mind forever on the characters they play…. then again, some really are not surprising.