April 14, 2011

Movie Review- Tangled

We just got Tangled from Netflix.  Wow, what a movie!  It's one of those movies we really should have seen in the theater, but I can't remember why we didn't.  I guess we weren't that interested in it.  Anyway, I told a few friends that we had gotten it, and they kept on telling us we'd love it.  Everyone we talked to loved it.  About a year ago, I heard about The Princess and the Frog, a Disney movie that was going to be made like all of the old Disney classics.  To say I was overjoyed would be an understatement!  But when I watched it, I realized that it wasn't exactly what I'd thought.  Sadly, I didn't like it.  At all.  I thought, 'Is this the new Disney?  With sorcery and romance and a few songs thrown in between some bad humor?'  Maybe that's why I wasn't excited about Tangled.  I think I only watched the first trailer that was released that didn't have anything in it- just a shot of the tower and maybe the teaser trailer.  After hearing nearly a dozen of my good friends say it was good, I got a little excited, but still wasn't sure about it.  What if it was just like The Princess and the Frog?  So, I sat down on the couch with some pretty high standards.  I'm pleased to announce that I wasn't disappointed!
Tangled, if some of you haven't seen it, is a new twist on the Rapunzel story.  (The original story, as you may know it: She has really long hair, a handsome dude comes along, the "Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair!" line follows, and they ride off into the sunset.)  Disney adds and embellishes the tale, giving the 'handsome dude' a name and a backstory, and doing the same for Rapunzel and her evil mother.  I was pleasantly surprised to see that Alan Menken had composed the songs, and the actors sung their characters' parts!  I was almost sure the director had hired a few Broadway people to do the parts- I even thought I knew who did Rapunzel's singing voice.  (By the way, my favorite song was 'I See the Light,' the beautiful duet!  Wow, was that song amazing!  Sadly, I can't find any free sheet music for it.  If any of you have it or know how to find it, please email me!)  There was enough action and adventure, humor, and plot-twisting- and just that tad bit of romance that we girls like- to make it one of the best movies I've seen since Toy Story 3 and Voyage of the Dawn Treader.  The soundtrack is already on my iTunes wish list, and I'm already pleading my siblings to split the movie.  (I would have watched it at least once more, but a certain younger brother- won't say who- was a little anxious to get his movie, so he shipped it back.  So I could only satisfy my craving by watching every single video that was on the Disney website.)
The only thing I didn't like about it was when Flynn told Rapunzel that a little rebellion was good.  Arwen assured me that he was just trying to get her out of the tower, so that smoothed it over for me.  (I won't say any more, or else I'll give up the plot!  I've been known to do that...)
Next time, I'll give you a little peek into a project I've been working on.  (It has something to do with fabric and stabbing myself with pins!)

April 10, 2011

Crazy Fun Weekend!

We had a blast this weekend, going from one awesome thing to the next!
On Friday, Arwen and I cleaned someone's house.  It was our first day doing it for them, but Thursday was our third time doing it for someone else.  After that, we drove home, inhaled some lunch, threw some bags of clothes in the car, and drove down to visit some friends.  Wednesday was a really good friend's birthday and she invited us to come over.  (Wasn't that sweet of her?!)  We had an awesome time- playing Hearts, jammin', talking, jammin' some more, then riding in the golf cart (the 14-year-old and 15-year-old drove; maybe a little wrong but more fun than if The Parents had driven!), eating some pretty awesome pizza, saving the pizza place from burning down by putting out a fire, and finally watching Voyage of the Dawn Treader, which is kind of crazy in itself, because I saw it for my birthday with their family, and now she was watching it for her birthday with our family!  We didn't get to my grandparents' house until about midnight.
Then yesterday, we had some friends over and we worked in our yard.  It wasn't fun, but it was easier because it was as if we had eight kids instead of only five.  Also, working with friends is much less of a chore.  We broke up into groups and the guys worked on building a retaining wall while the girls laid out and planted the garden.  After a good, solid seven hours of work (in which the ladies broke off after about five hours to bake cookies), we all stopped to eat dinner and have an AirSoft gun fight.  The only problem was that we only had four guns and six people who wanted to play!  We ended up having 'Substitutes' who would come in when someone got shot.  It was the highlight of the day!
Today, Arwen is out with a few other Seniors from our church.  They went bowling... and forgot me!  I'm like, "Hey, don't you need a photographer?!"  Oh, well.  I guess I'll go when I graduate.  (If I ever get that far...)
This has turned into a pretty long post!  : D  Time to go now, though, because the people who got left behind (me on down) are going to watch Little Men.  I've never seen it before, but am willing to watch it.  Tonight, we're going to see Tangled for the first time!  I'll let you know what I think of both of those movies.

April 4, 2011

Jimmy Valiant: Scions of Danger

Last Thursday, I was able to attend a premiere of a movie called Jimmy Valiant: Scions of Danger. At the beginning, the director asked that we give feedback, so I took my notebook out of my purse along with a pencil and was ready to take some notes. Judging from the trailers I'd seen online, this was going to be a pretty good film. I only got to jot down one idea before I was sucked into the plot- 'Excellent beginning- hooked me within 1st 30 sec!'

(A synopsis taken from the website) When the individualistic, cynical soldier-for-hire Jimmy Valiant (Brant Harris) is recruited to protect an idealistic Texas state senator, the two are forced to work together to unravel a conspiracy that forces Jimmy to face a dilemma between his own lust for vengeance and his family’s convictions about justice.
After a tragedy in the family business, young Jimmy Valiant seeks independence as an international soldier-for-hire, and balks at a marriage that would risk his autonomy. Facing an ultimatum from his fiancée complicated by mounting debts, Jimmy becomes desperate for work. An anonymous client recruits Jimmy to shadow a controversial Texas State Senator. Jimmy must overcome his myopia as he initiates an investigation that uncovers some startling truths, and brings him face-to-face with the last man in the world that he ever wanted to meet again.

Jimmy soon finds himself caught up in a conspiracy that threatens to undermine everything that he has come to trust.

Taking you panning through the halls of the Texas State Capitol, roaring in a Ferrari over the hills of Canyon Lake, and racing down the San Antonio Riverwalk, this film has been an adventure to make and promises to be an adventure to watch.

And, yes, it was a real Ferrari, going 115 mph!! So cool! Also, they filmed the outside of the Texas State Capitol, but for all you TeenPact people who would like to know, it was the inside of the Georgia Captiol- you know, the part they wouldn't let us in? They let Nathaniel Darnell and his cast and crew go in and film there!

This was the first movie premiere I've been to and it was quite an experience! I was able to stand less than a foot away from the director and the actor who played Jimmy Valiant!! It was also the first time I've been able to see a movie with a few church friends, which was very nice. We had a long talk after the movie and laughed a lot!

Overall, this was one of the best independent Christian films I've seen- and believe me, I've seen a lot. There were only a few cheesy parts, and the entire thing kept me on the edge of my seat! To learn more about Jimmy Valiant: Scions of Danger, visit www.jimmyvaliantthemovie.com