Into the Woods (2014)

Into The Woods

source: impawards.com

SYNOPSIS

From the director of Chicago and the producer of Wicked comes a modern twist on the beloved fairy tales you thought you knew. Meryl Streep stars in this epic musical saga about daring to venture Into The Woods. Iconic characters, such as Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Jack and the Beanstalk and Rapunzel, find their fates intertwined with a humble baker and his wife, whose longing to have a child sends them on a quest to reverse a witch’s (Streep) curse. With an all-star cast, this spellbinding adventure is everything you could ever wish for!

Official Movie Website

REVIEW

The last movie I could not really get into, too much singing, too much entertwined plots, too much woods. This is sad to report as the fairytale genre is usually right up my alley. And being gay, when was the last time I did not appreciate a musical? I can’t explain my aversion to getting involved with this movie. The fact that it’s a dark movie, which do not display well on my television may have been a factor.

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Boyhood (2014)

Boyhood

source: impawards.com

SYNOPSIS

Filmed over 12 years with the same cast, Richard Linklater’s BOYHOOD is a groundbreaking story of growing up as seen through the eyes of a child named Mason (a breakthrough performance by Ellar Coltrane), who literally grows up on screen before our eyes. Starring Ethan Hawke and Patricia Arquette as Mason’s parents and new comer Lorelei Linklater as his sister Samantha, BOYHOOD charts the rock terrain of childhood like no other film has before. Snapshots of adolescence from road trips and family dinners to birthdays and graduations and all the moments in between become transcendent, set to a soundtrack spanning the years from Coldplay’s Yellow to Arcade Fire’s Deep Blue. BOYHOOD is both a nostalgia time capsule of the recent past and an ode to growing up and parenting. It’s impossible to watch Mason and his family without thinking about our own journey.

Official Movie Website

REVIEW

Aside from the hook that the movie was shot over 12 years with the same cast, I found the subject matter pretty ordinary and therefor my interest waned. I child has four legs; that is the extent of my parenting. Even as a boy, I could not relate to Mason. I don’t suppose I even tried. I think it’s my viewing mood that precluded me from enjoying this movie more. It was like watching home movies; I don’t even get why we watch our own home movies, much less someone else’s.

I do give credit to the time capsule mention; the movie did arouse some feelings of nostalgia with the music.

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Birdman: Or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) (2014)

Birdman

source: impawards.com

SYNOPSIS

A washed-up actor, who once played an iconic superhero, battles his ego and attempts to recover his family, his career and himself in the days leading up to the opening of his Broadway play.

Internet Movie Database

REVIEW

The fact that I could not locate a synopsis from the official movie website, should lead you in the direction my review for Birdman Or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) is going. I understand the short synopsis put forth by Internet Movie Database, but my mind is a labyrinth after watching this unedited film. I thought the idea for scene transitions was ingenious and viewed that as a from of crazy that was sadly depicted from my perspective. In the end, I am not sure whether he succeeded or failed miserably and selfishly. Again, I think this movie required way too much thinking than I was willing to put forth.

Interesting filming technique, but no comprehension.

Starring: Michael Keaton, Emma Stone, Zach Galifianakis, Ed Norton.

Oh my, Ed Norton. That guy is so frikkin’ hot and he showed some of that hot body in this movie.

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Edward Norton: Birdman: Or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

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Big Hero 6 (2014)

Big Hero Six

source: impawards.com

SYNOPSIS

With all the heart and humor audiences expect from Walt Disney Animation Studios, “Big Hero 6” is an action-packed comedy adventure that introduces Baymax, a lovable, personal companion robot, who forms a special bond with robotics prodigy Hiro Hamada. When a devastating turn of events catapults them into the midst of a dangerous plot unfolding in the streets of San Fransokyo, Hiro turns to Baymax and his diverse group of friends — adrenaline junkie Go Go Tomago, neatnik Wasabi, chemistry whiz Honey Lemon and fanboy Fred — who transform into a band of unlikely heroes.

Official Movie Website

REVIEW

This movie was more to my liking, requiring no thinking. Nothing new here: kid genius develops a robot that some subvervise forces want to steal to make more money and now kid must save the world. There were some cute and fun moments throughout. Personally, the plot about always being looked over for did not wash well with me; I enjoyed the relationship between Baymax and Hiro the most.

Animation was great. Entertaining.

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The Imitation Game (2014)

The Imitation Game

source: impawards.com

SYNOPSIS

During the winter of 1952, British authorities entered the home of mathematician, cryptanalyst and war hero Alan Turing (Benedict Cumberbatch) to investigate a reported burglary. They instead ended up arresting Turing himself on charges of ‘gross indecency,’ an accusation that would lead to his devastating conviction for the criminal offense of homosexuality — little did officials know, they were actually incriminating the pioneer of modern-day computing. Famously leading a motley group of scholars, linguists, chess champions and intelligence officers, he was credited with cracking the so-called unbreakable codes of Germany’s World War II Enigma machine. An intense and haunting portrayal of a brilliant, complicated man, THE IMITATION GAME follows a genius who under nail-biting pressure helped to shorten the war and, in turn, save thousands of lives.

Official Movie Website

REVIEW

He was definitely complicating…complicating the turn of events for me just enough for me to get lost. Having read the synopsis above, I find it to be a very good description of the movie content. I seem to recall a plot line about a “secret relationship of some kind.” I found Alan’s introspection, into his inability to identify himself, haunting. In the end, I remember feeling quite sad for such a dark time in my history as a homosexual. I don’t think my mood matched the intensity of the movie; I was more focused on the quirkiness that is suggested of the highly intelligent, a la Sheldon Cooper of The Big Bang Theory.

A miss for me.

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Big Eyes (2014)

Big Eyes

source: impawards.com

SYNOPSIS

Big Eyes tells the outrageous true story of one of the most epic art frauds in history. In the 1960s, painter Walter Keane (Christoph Waltz) had reached success beyond belief, revolutionizing the commercialization of popular art with enigmatic paintings of waifs with big eyes. The bizarre and shocking truth would eventually be discovered: Walter’s works were actually created by his wife Margaret (Amy Adams). The Keanes, it seemed, had been living a colossal lie that had fooled the entire world.

Official Movie Website

REVIEW

I drove me nuts that she kept quiet for so long and pretty much came out smellin’ like a rose! That’s how it seemed to me. I mean, how tortured was she really by all his lying by omission? Such a strange circumstance to find herself in. I suppose her history may be contributary, and having never experienced that, could explain my outrage. I don’t know.

I found this story so oddly gripping. Reminded me of Crazy Love or Wild Thing. I really enjoyed watching this for entertainment. Perhaps it is the light that Tim Burton shines upon this production, who’s hint are loud and clear: Big Eyes.

I laughed at those, as well as myself, that bought into the commercial aspect this movie describes.

The proverbial train wreck of which one cannot look away. Great movie!

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King Acres Bathroom Orchids

King Acres Bathroom Orchids

©Kingdom of Leo

This is a picture of my orchid plants that reside in my bathroom. The one on the left is currently reblooming from last year; the one on the right is and older plant that has decided not to rebloom this year, and last year if memory serves me correctly.

I need to replant both into a heavier pot as my toilet shelving is so flimsy, I am thinking that the extra weight might keep the plants more in place. As it is right now, I have to add/remove things from the shelves with care or else the orchids come tumbling down. I suppose I am lucky that neither plant has fallen in to the toilet yet.

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Spring in King Acres

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On my way out to the car for the Los Angeles Yarn Crawl, I could not help but take some pictures of some of the flora. Enjoy!

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What Do These Two Guys Have In Common?

James Norton & Dr. Travis Stork

Source: www.redeyechicago.com & www.mariasfarmcountrykitchen.com

They both represent the latest type of guy to whom I find myself attracted.

On the left is James Norton, who I discovered watching Grantchester after Downton Abbey. Unfortunately, he plays a minister, so there are not many opportunities for him to be shirtless, much less naked.

On the right is Dr. Travis Stork from The Doctors, which I watch from time to time. I was able to find pictures of him shirtless, but they were not of best quality, so I did not include them.

The irony is that when I first got sober, I met Tom, who looked very similar to these two guys, and I developed a huge crush on him. We did go out a couple of times, but nothing developed. I suppose I was trying to replace one addiction with another. I hope he finally met someone that makes him happy.

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