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YNMS? DOWNTON ABBEY

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We're celebrating ALADDIN (1992) 
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"Abu is a strong example of a non-verbal sidekick, but I think the animators outdid themselves with the magic carpet's communication. It's such terrific character work using just animation and score." - Cash

"I was Jafar for Halloween and my neighbors had a stereo surround CD player and we listened to the Jafar Prince Ali reprise all the time." - Jakey

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Entries in zoology (100)

Tuesday
May212019

Aladdin Pt 2: Manic Magical Improv, Sight Gags, and "Prince Ali"

In Part 1 of our re-watch of Disney's Aladdin (the proper one, from 1992, not the live-action thing coming out this weekend) Ben got us through the introductions to good-hearted "street rat" Aladdin, frustrated princess Jasmine, and up to the mouth of the Cave of Wonders. We enter as Aladdin takes his first step into a whole new world…

 

Part 2 by Tim Brayton

0:28:04 – Let's take just a minute to appreciate the atmospheric concision of this descent into the cave. First, we had a shot of Aladdin stepping over the tiger-god's teeth, dissolving into this beautiful wide shot of him (below) at the top of an impossible flight of stairs, a tiny bright dot in the overall gloom that shifts from cold blue to hot, threatening red as our eye glides down the lines of the composition.

Then another dissolve takes us to the foot of stairs, with Aladdin about to step into the heart of the cave. It's a swift, visually-driven way of taking us down into… Hell? It's hard to say just yet, but it creates a terrific sense of mystery, both promising and foreboding...

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Mar272019

Would you rather?

OMG. Did you hear that Hugh Jackman and Sutton Foster are doing The Music Man on Broadway together for the 2020 season? Aaaaahhhhh how perfect. Anyway, since Hugh is on the brain (and seems to be getting younger !?!), it's time for another round of our celebrity-fantasy quick decision poll time ago (an excuse to share our fav instagram posts on the regular essentially). So, would you rather

... go falconing with Hugh?
... get your beard did with Rune Temte (Captain Marvel) in Oslo?
... reenact Lady & Tramp with Justin Theroux?
... reminisce about Natural Born Killers with Juliette Lewis?
... ice skate with Jonathan Van Ness?
... have a drink with Russell Tovey & Andrew Scott?  
... ride camels with Sandy Powell?
... chopper to an island for fine snail delicacies with Michelle Yeoh?
... dunk your hair in the pool with Tracee Ellis Ross? 

Pictures are after the jump to help you decide.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Mar192019

Would you rather?

Time for another round of our silly Instagram-time-wasting distraction. Would you rather...

...have a double-ginger moment with Isabelle & Juli?
...see Dumbo with Dame Helen? 
... share a meal with a Quokka and a Hemsworth?
...cuddle a lamb with Vera Farmiga? 
... hike Koko Head with Cynthia Erivo? 
... visit Patagonia with La Pfeiffer? 
... sing-along with the Bee-Gees and Guillaume Canet? 

Pictures are after the jump to help you decide...

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Mar162019

SLO Film Fest: Wolves, Sharks, and that "Delicate Balance" 

Nathaniel R reporting from the San Luis Obispo International Film Festival

After a delightful trip back to 1969 iconography and disturbing peek back at 1933 fascism, the San Luis Obispo's 25th festival threw us directly into the immediate now with three engaging documentaries exploring very real, very urgent problems with our ecosystems, relationships with animal life, and the dehumanizing dangers of globalism and late stage capitalism. That may sound depressing, and it was to an extent, but all three films were suffused with enough passion and optimism to make their bitter pills easier to swallow.

The shortest and "lightest" of these with Collin Monda's hour-long documentary The Trouble With Wolves, which is locked but not quite finished (needing funds to complete its rights clearances and such). It's a surprisingly nuanced look at the success and aftershocks of a 1995 federal program to reintroduce gray wolves to the US via Yellowstone National Park.

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Feb232019

"Kitbull"

*purrs*

This wonderful short is directed by Rosana Sullivan and it's traditional animation rather than the CG usual from Pixar. The drawing is so expressive -- how great are the cats eyes? -- and as someone who once adopted a ratty-looking nervous and unfriendly street kitten, this really struck a chord. My heart melted when it learned to make a friend. Perhaps other cat owners or pitbull fans will be similarly moved? 

There have been six new shorts from Pixar's new initiative. Here's what they say about this program:

The SparkShorts program is designed to discover new storytellers, explore new storytelling techniques, and experiment with new production workflows. These films are unlike anything we’ve ever done at Pixar, providing an opportunity to unlock the potential of individual artists and their inventive filmmaking approaches on a smaller scale than our normal fare.”

 

Wednesday
Feb132019

PETA's "Oscat" Winners: Bradley Cooper, Black Panther, Annihilation

by Nathaniel R

Here's an award you might not have heard of. PETA, the animal rights organization, gives out "Oscats" each year honoring the most animal friendly films and stars. So, even though Bradley Cooper has PETA's senior vice president says:

PETA is thrilled to recognize the people and projects behind Hollywood’s most significant animal rights advances of the year.”

The winners and why they were chosen after the jump...

Click to read more ...