Movie Trailer Review – The Man From U.N.C.L.E.

Although I rail against reboots and remakes, I love the Guy Ritchie aesthetic, so The Man From U.N.C.L.E gets a pass. it doesn’t matter what the plot is about, you know a Guy Ritchie film is going to be fun.  Henry Cavill is looking very debonair in the trailer. A lot of tongue in check 60s spy action. A welcome break from the cartoon violence of modern spy movies.  The only red flag that I see so in the trailer, is that there doesn’t appear to have a compelling female character but I will reserve judgment.

Release Date: August 14, 2015

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MOVIE TRAILER REVIEW – What Happened, Miss Simone.

One of my all time favorite singers is getting a new treatment and I can’t wait. Nina Simone is one the fieriest singers of all time. From Four Women to Mississippi Goddamn, the passion and pain can me heard in her voice and seen in every performance. Netflix is presenting a new documentary on this legendary singer.

On Netflix June 26th.

Review – Hercules vs Vampires

The LA Opera is pushing boundaries with its latest offering “Hercules vs Vampires.” This fun piece combines the movie “Hercules in the Center of the Earth”, operatic singers and the fabulous LA Opera orchestra.  The movie’s plot, and I use that term loosely, is that “Hercules must journey in Hades itself to retrieve the magic stone that will free his love from the powers of darkness” (via IDBM). The twist with this production is that the dialogue was dubbed with the opera singers. Hearing choice lines like “Zeus! Give me Strength” and “I’ve Been Tricked by the Gods” sung with operatic passion is a enjoy like no other. Patrick Morganelli adapted the text and composed the music which is a great showcase for the La Opera orchestra lead by Christopher Allen. 

“Hercules vs Vampires” is a limited run production with just four performances. But it’s a great sign that the opera is committed to exploring unique vehicles and attracting younger audiences with offbeat productions. Hopefully, more opera around the country will continue along this same path. 

Movie Trailer Review – Chappie

The latest from director Neil Blomkamp (District 9) Chappie has an all star cast (Hugh Jackman, Sigourney Weaver, Dev Patel and Sharlto Copley) but it looks terrible. The basic premise is that a decommission police robot is giving new programming that grants him sentience. The new found awareness threatens the status quo and the fight is on. Yadda yadda yadda
Chappie reminds me of the long lost grandson of Short Circuit. I’m guessing that the voice of Chappie (Sharlto Copley) is supposed to convey a short of childlike innocence but it’s really kind of annoying. This looks like a rental to me.

NERD ALERT – Rebel, Jedi, Princess, Queen: Star Wars and the Power of Costumes

For those of you in the Pacific Northwest, Seattle’s EMP Museum has an awesome new exhibit: costumes from the Star Wars films.

‘Star Wars’ Exhibit Shows The Force Is With The Costumes

By DONNA GORDON BLANKINSHIP

SEATTLE (AP) — The creators of a new traveling exhibit on the costumes of Star Wars are hoping to gather geeks, fashionistas and movie fans together to discuss how clothing helps set the scene.

But mostly, the exhibit that opened this past weekend at Seattle’s EMP Museum is an opportunity to see 60 original costumes from the six Star Wars movies in one room — from Princess Leia’s slave bikini to Queen Amidala’s wedding dress, which has not been part of any previous public display. Continue Here

For more information: Seattle EMP Museum

May the Force Be With You.

WELCOME TO THE SANCTUM

WELCOME TO THE SANCTUM.

Please check out my new obsession: The Sanctum Trilogy. Madhuri Blayblock has created a magical world that helped renew my love of reading. It’s a rare book that will capture my complete attention and have me turning the pages with glee (or in this case, swiping my tablet with a mad fury) to see what happens next. This series isn’t a typical Hero’s Journey. It’s filled with love, friendship, mysticism, vampires and fighting warriors. I am waiting on pins and needles for the third and final book to be release on February 4, 2015.

Review – Biophilia

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Bjork is one of the most unusual and gifted artist working today. I have been following her career for over 25 years, and she never disappoints. Biophilia – Live captures the final show of her two year world tour. It’s more than just a concert film, it continues Bjork’s exploration of music, technology and nature.

I was lucky enough to attend her show last year at the Hollywood Palladium. While I enjoyed the concert immensely, because of the stage set up, I couldn’t see much of what was going on with the musicians and choir on stage. This movie expanded my appreciation of their work. Bjork designed specific instruments for this album and to see world class artist create the sonic masterpiece is quite a treat. I would love to see a short film just on these unclassifiable devices.

There is a companion documentary “When Bjork met Attenborough” , which is next on my to view list. It delves into the making of Biophilia and really explores the connection to music and nature.

Biophilia – Live is in theaters now. http://www.biophiliathefilm.com/

Art Alert – Celebration of Sisters and Aging

If you are in the New York Area, MOMA has a great new exhibit. A group of sisters have taken a photo every year for the past forty years in the same order. In addition to be a fascinating art project, it’s a wonderful family heirloom.

Photographer captures 4 sisters over 40 years in 40 portraits

It started as a family photograph. It blossomed into an annual rite of passage.
A collection of 40 portraits of four sisters, taken over 40 years, is being recognized as a testament to the aging process, as well as a celebration of sisterhood. Continued here

MOMA

Social Connections

Lately I think more and more about social connections and how easily they can become frayed. In this digital age it’s easy to build and rely on an online community but we miss out on a lot when we fail to invest in our in real life. The past few weeks have been a bumpy period in my life and “How Laptop Living Almost Left Me Homeless” by Heather Seggel really touch me. It’s an eye opening article and I definitely recommend reading it.

Last week I turned 45. I may soon become homeless.
I am not the stereotypical candidate for homelessness: I have a B.A. in English and a small business as a copywriter. And yet, my situation says something about where we live now in California–somewhere between a real roof and a virtual one. When your work doesn’t demand a physical address and you’ve lost social contacts and the web of connections they provide, it’s all too easy to find yourself hovering more or less nowhere.

Continued Here

In the news, there are constant reports of an increase in depression in every generation. How can we as a society prompted investing in real world relationships. It’s so easy to get caught up in normal routines of work and school and long commutes that is not surprising that people no longer have time to connect in person. I am against scheduling every minute of my life outside of work but would it be worthwhile to arrange a regular get together in order to continue to invest social building?

I would love to hear your thoughts.