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Entries in mermaids (7)

Friday
Aug302013

What's the Most Embarrassing Thing You've Watched Recently?

You're only as sick as your secrets! I'll start...

I confess: I don't quite know how it happened -- maybe someone linked up purchasable mermaid tails on their facebook and one thing led to another? if so I blame them --  but somehow I watched 7 episodes of the Australian kids show Mako Mermaids this week. The acting is terrible (except for an baby Emma Stone type who is pretty good at physical comedy) and one thing happens every episode. ONE THING. Is that how kids shows are, plotwise?

YOUR TURN. What have you been watching that filled you with guilt? I mean you could've caught up on a classic or three you missed with those hours!

Friday
Jun082012

That's a Link Breaker, Ladies

Letters of Note "I feel every cut" an intimate glimpse back at Terry Gilliam's Brazil madness
Self Styled Siren a happy ending for For the Love of Film Blogathon III. The money raised towards film preservation (a digitial copy of a super early piece of the Hitchcock puzzle) will result in free streaming of the surviving reels this November. Well done, all!
24 Frames Broadway star Kelli O'Hara will star in not one but two new fillm drama to stage musical adaptations: Far From Heaven (previously discussed) and... The Bridges of Madison County?
The Daily Notebook 1948 was a good year for mermaids: Glynis Johns & Ann Blyth

Rope of Silicon new character photos from Anna Karenina including Keira Knightley, veiled
Pajiba says goodbye to sci-fi legend Ray Bradbury (RIP)
Antagony & Ecstacy "in space no one can hear you yawn"... on Alien Ressurection. Or is it Alien: Ressurection
Slate "Woman: The Other Alien in Alien" Tom Shone investigates Academia and the Alien franchise... with a Ripley focus of course
Ultra Culture "fixes" the teaser poster for Robert Zemeckis' Flight starring Denzel Washington 

Broadway Blog my friend Tom makes his educated Tony prediction guesses. Are you watching Sunday night? 
The New Yorker's this new true story article "The Yankee Comandante" about an American helping Cuban rebels overthrow their president in 1959 is already on its way to being a movie. George Clooney will direct.  
Vulture the scariest thing ever seen on television via Twin Peaks. I wholeheartedly agree. I remember actually attempting to move backwards. (Maybe I also whimpered / screamed. Shut up. You had to be there in 1991)  

Finally...
I giggled this morning when reading Stranger Than Most's "Jenna tells it like it is" a reminder of one of 30 Rock's most hilarious scenes. I'm linking because tonight I'll be at Town Hall enjoying Jane Krakowski in concert, a birthday gift from my besties. Yay. I loved Jane truly madly and deeply even before 30 Rock finally convinced everyone else that she was a comedy genius. Every drink I consume tonight will be (re)named in her honor: Jenna'sSide, The Krakowski, 'That'sADealBreakerLadies', Sexual Walkabout, CallFromTheVatican, and MuffinTop. Erm... not that I'm going to drink six drinks. No Lost Weekends for me!

Tell me how much you love Jane Krakowski and how much she deserves the Emmy for this season of 30 Rock after the jump. Don't be anything less than effusive, bitches.

Saturday
Dec102011

Oscar's FX Semi-Finalists: Superheroes, Aliens, Dinosaurs, Mermaids

Wouldn't it be weird if Oscar had finalist rounds for all categories and not just a few of them? Can you imagine a runway elimination for Costume Design or a Supporting Actress pre-nom bake-off? But, bringing us back to reality, few categories do this. The effects branch does and after having a looksie at this year's showiest films, they've narrowed the Oscar posssibilities for "Best Achievement in Visual Effects"  to 15. We're not sure why there are so many steps in the process but they'll narrow it down again in early January to 10 before 5 are named at the end of January on Oscar Nomination Morning (Or what Nathaniel calls Christmas Eve... Christmas being Oscar Night, his favorite holiday!)

The semi-finalist list bring us a few dinosaurs, a handful of mythical creatures, several aliens, a dozen colorful superheroes, a scary school (herd? pack? fleet?) of mermaids, and many robots from small to super sized.

Captain America: The First Avenger 
Cowboys & Aliens 
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 
Hugo 
Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides
Real Steel
Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows
Sucker Punch

Super 8
Thor
Transformers: Dark of the Moon
The Tree of Life
X-Men: First Class

DINOSAURS! There's no award for Best Supporting Visual Effects but I always root for that film even though it's rarely nominated. I mean how are you going to ignore the visual effects of Eternal Sunshine back in its day. But they did.  So this year's I'm really pulling for the audacious creation of the earth segment from The Tree of Life since we obviously can't have the destruction of the earth in Melancholia. Together they're a Double Scoop of Circle of Life Awesome.

OMISSIONS! Effects work that didn't make it to the finals include Tarsem's warring god boytoys in The Immortals, the elaborate visual wows of The Adventures of Tintin, the apocalyptic beauty of Melancholia's opening/closing segments, and the yellow clouds enlarged craniums alient whatnots and gooey green CGI messes of Green Lantern -- someone mop that up!

FOUR NOMINEES... BUT THEY ARE LEGION

On Oscar nomination morning five films will be left standing and four lucky craftsmen will reap the benefits for each film, their names to be determined by the producers. It's interesting to note how many people work on a movie's effects sequences versus how many are nominated for what the teams deliver unto us. Let's take Captain America for an example. The Special Effects department which does models, pyrotechnics, explosives, snow, molds and other sundries and whatnots numbers 40. The Visual Effects department, which does ... uh... everything else [marvel at my intricate knowledge of the process! *snort*] numbers nearly 800 (!!!). Generally speaking one assumes the producers merely pick department heads because most of the job descriptions of those nominated are simply  "visual effects supervisor" though sometimes you'll get a "special effects supervisor" from the sister department. And occassionally something a lot more specific like last year's nomination for Michael Owens on Hereafter whose job title reads "designer: tsunami sequence, visual effects supervisor".

Beyond possibly previously Oscared Craig Barron (2 noms / 1 win) I'm not sure who would get Captain America's nomination (should it receive one) since there are several visual effects supervisors most of whom would be first time nominees. But I think the producers ought to think outside the box hyperbaric chamber and consider Simon Waterson, Chris Evans' trainer because this here was the movie's single greatest visual effect...

 

I rest my case.

If they need further convincing -- perhaps even towards an honorary Oscar --  please to note that Simon Waterson was also responsible for Daniel Craig's Casino Royale body. You owe Simon Waterson, moviegoer, even if you don't know it!

Which 33% of the semi-finalists do you think will call themselves Oscar Nominees come January's end?

Oscar Predictions -Visual Categories

Thursday
Oct062011

The Little Mermaid... She's Gotta Have It.

With this week's Disney announcement that The Little Mermaid will get 3D rerelease treatment (along with other pictures) that put The Lion King back on everyone's lips, I thought it was time to republish this piece on the classic film...

The Little Mermaid (1989)  | Directed by Ron Clements and John Musker Screenplay by Roger Allers, Ron Clements, and John Musker (very loosely based on the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale) | Music by Alan Menken Lyrics by Howard Ashman | Starring the Voices of: Jodie Benson, Pat Carroll, Kenneth Mars and Samuel E Wright | Production Company Walt Disney | Released 11/17/1989

 

American members of Generation Y or Z and beyond may have a good deal of trouble imagining this but it's true: once upon a time, animated movies were considered highly uncool. They were strictly for babies. Teenagers disdained them. Adults took their children under duress. They barely caused a ripple at the box office. The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences ignored them. CGI was not part of the national vernacular. Strange but true.

In a very short window of time, from November 1989 through February 1992, three major events changed modern perceptions of the animated film in a gargantuan way. Let's take them in reverse order: The third big-bang was the moment when Beauty & the Beast (1991) was nominated for six Oscars including Best Picture, the first time that a cartoon had received that pinnacle mainstream honor. The middle part of the three-part revolution was when hipster American audiences began to discover that there was more to the form than Walt Disney. Katsuhiro Ôtomo's Japanese sci-fi spellbinder Akira was the key that opened the door for anime, now very big and influential business in America. But the first key event in animation's rebirth (stateside at least) was the release of Disney's "28th animated classic" The Little Mermaid; an orgasmic reawakening of the most flexible and fantastical of film mediums...

"She's Gotta Have It!"

The heroine of Disney's modern breakthrough film is Ariel, a teenage mermaid. Since this is a fairy tale (and a Disney one at that) she's also a beautiful princess: the youngest daughter of King Triton who rules the ocean. Only trouble is, despite her quick smile and high spirits, she's restless and unhappy... dissatisfied with her life of privilege under the sea. She wants to trade up. Literally. Since this is a late 1980s film (and a Disney one at that) she's also the headstrong entitled type. This princess isn't going to whisper her need. She's no Oliver with his meager allotment of gruel, politely asking for more.

music, sexuality and animated evolution after the jump... 

Click to read more ...

Thursday
May262011

Team Experience: Swim with Mermaids, Ride on Gaga

This week I asked the contributing Film Experience team how they felt about Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides and I also wanted to gauge whether we had any Little Monsters in our midst via Lady Gaga's "Born This Way" droppings.

You refused to see Pirates 4. What would ever bring you back to this franchise?


Michael: It's hard to imagine what could bring me back to the franchise at this point, (I feel like I only just got done sitting through At World's End) but a a 90 minute running time would be a step in the right direction.

Andreas: If Disney ever wants me to shell out for another Pirates movie, they'll have to go down a really surprising route, like selling it as "Andrei Rublev on the high seas." Or maybe they could introduce interesting characters! Some outrageous twist like that. What if they solved all their problems by just making Pirates 5 into Dead Man 2? They could bring in Jim Jarmusch to guest-direct, and use William Blake quotes for all of Jack Sparrow's dialogue!

Craig: Can they get all the sequels over with in one go and amalgamate the whole lot: The Hungover Kung-Fu Transformers of the Caribbean in the City of the Deathly Hallows Parts 2, 3 & 4 will be showing near you THIS SUMMER! Either that or they just cast the muppets instead of Depp, Cruz and company. I could easily do with another Muppets Treasure Island, thanks.

You saw Pirates 4. What did you think of the Mermaids?

Jose: The mermaids were truly preposterous! Where were their nice sea shell bras and their fuzzy crab and fish friends?

Although on the bright side, if it hadn't been for Syrena, we wouldn't have had a chance to see Sam Claflin shirtless. Is it only me or should Pé have played the queen of the mermaids instead of being stuck with that crappy character?

Kurt: It's such a shrug of a movie. That said, I liked the mermaids -- collectively, they were one of the film's very few inspired elements. The mermaid attack was the first action sequence I actually paid attention to. The depiction is neither totally accurate nor blasphemous. Just a new interpretation. And thank god for it.

What if Lady Gaga's "Borth This Way" was a movie?


Who should ride her cyborg self?

Andreas: I imagine Born This Way: The Movie as a cross between The Terminator, Showgirls, and Un Chien Andalou, but with extra preachiness thrown in. To be honest, I've always wanted Gaga to branch out into large-scale filmmaking just on the basis of the "Bad Romance" music video, so if she made exactly that, I'd be perfectly happy. The weirder, the better.

Jose: It would be a freaking Heavy Metal like extravaganza. Only two passengers should ever ride Gaga: Hedwig (from the Angry Inch)... 

...and  the Governator himself. Can you imagine those two in an action movie together?

Though you didn't ask who are they chasing/is chasing them  but I'll answer. There is only one being who can do that: Madonna. She needs to find the one camp movie role to make her a cinema icon.

CraigThe Gaga videos to date, all strung together, are like a kind of movie anyway, aren't they? But if Born This Way were a movie it would be directed by Alan Smithee. Burn (rubber), baby, burn! Edward Furlong would clearly have to ride on Gaga's mutant-motorcycle. And Gaga herself would have to talk in a weird robo-Austrian-motor dialect. Doesn't she already do that in some of her songs anyway? It's part of her charm.

Kurt: If Lady Gaga's "Born This Way" were a movie, it would, of course be Labyrinth 2, and on the back of Gaga's cyborg motorcycle would ride David Bowie's Jareth, clad in his signature wig and junk-hugging leggings. Together, Gaga and Jareth would rule over their combined armies of little monsters, and anyone who spoke against their doubly strong maze of fabulousness would be swiftly tossed into the Bog of Eternal Stench.

YOUR TURN

  • Who would you pay to see riding on Gaga's mutant-cycle?
  • Do you prefer your mermaids carnivorous or sweet and tuneful?