The Reviews Are In (Late): The Jungle Book

THE JUNGLE BOOK

As much as you might like the recent string of Disney live-action remakes, I think we can all agree that none of them have improved on the original story. Even if you loved Kenneth Branagh’s Cinderella, it’s not about to dethrone it’s cartoon predecessor. That being said, if enjoyable but ultimately underwhelming Disney remakes are the rule, the The Jungle Book is the exception. The
story and visuals are so improved that I left the theater, not Jonesing for the original version, MV5BMTkyNTUxMDczMF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwMTUzNDA4NjE@._V1_but wanting to buy myself another ticket for this one.

It’s surprising that a movie with the combined voice talents of Idris Elba, Scarlett Johansson, Bill Murray, Christopher Walken and Ben Kingsley could find a young lead with enough screen presence to balance the screaming star-power of the supporting cast. Luckily Neel Sethi is the living incarnation of Mowgli, right down to the little red jungle shorts. He’s as precious as a little wolf puppy, which, in the context of the movie, is the highest compliment I can give.

It’s worth mentioning that this movie is definitely scarier than the 1967 cartoon you screen_shot_2016-02-21_at_10_16627afe.jpegremember. King Louie (Christopher Walken) is genuinely horrifying, as the family who sat behind me in the theater can testify. Likewise, Idris Elba’s Shere Khan is equally impressive; it’s not the first time I’ve been attracted to an anthropomorphized cartoon animal, and unfortunately it probably won’t be the last. Point is… meow. Pun intended.

I originally wasn’t sold on Disney’s plan to capitalize on former cinematic glory by maxresdefaultremaking beloved classics. It seemed like a self-aggrandizing re-mix of the company’s
greatest hits. But if the films to come have as much heart and as much charm as The Jungle Book, it’s a stance I may need to reconsider.

Whitney Weldon

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The Reviews Are In: Zootopia

Me, when I realized I was the only person over 20 in the theater without children.

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Me, when I realized I didn’t care.

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Me, after it dawned on me that Zoototpia is the greatest animated film of all time

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Me, when the lady next to me wouldn’t SHUT UP.

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Me, during the DMV scene.

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Me, when I realized that a fox and a bunny can totally be best friends.

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Me, when it ended and I had to go home and eat my feels.

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Whitney Weldon

The Fangirly Show: Episode #2 Fangirling Over Fall TV

For this episode, we discuss our hits and misses of the 2015 Fall TV season, both new shows and returning.  Also, they get a bit giggly playing a game of Truth or Dare.  Listen as Ellen does horrible celebrity impressions and Whitney reveals who she thinks would be a real lion in the boudoir.

You can listen and subscribe HERE on iTunes or you can go HERE to listen and let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Fall tv

In with the Old: The Mighty Ducks

Recently, I found myself with some time on my hands and saw that all three of the Mighty Ducks films were on Netflix and thought, “Eh, why not?” I am an adult, therefore, giving me the ability to choose to spend my day watching stupid kids movies. I had a lot of thoughts while watching and thought I would share them with all of you.

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Pretty sure that this movie gave me a misconception about the 1970’s. I thought they were a very hazy time… Actually, maybe it wasn’t too much of a misconception.

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Sometimes I think that Disney is a little too heavy-handed in pointing out that someone is a bad boy. Beer! Loud music! Sassing cops!

MD2

Am I too logical in thinking that this prank wouldn’t work on someone driving by? A passerby, sure, but someone driving by is going to come to a screeching halt to stop in the middle of the street and steal a purse? Maybe I’ve seen too many Russian traffic cams of truckers saving kittens.

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I’m glad that at least the closed captioning gave credit where credit was due. Also, I posit that a kids sports movie cannot exist without the snarky trash talker (see also: Ham from The Sandlot, Tanner Boyle from The Bad News Bears, etc.)

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Seriously, inquiring minds would like to know, is that a phone?

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FART JOKE!

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Gordon Bombay. Possibly the best name in film history. Also, the best shoulder pads in the biz.

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Bombay, you know how movies work, right? Of course, it had to be the Hawks.

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Pretty sure that my brother and I were incapable of going to hockey games between the years of 1993-present (?) without saying this.

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Ah, the good old days when teenage boys had to make do with issues of Sports Illustrated.

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You know it’s a 90’s movie when the menacing gang is on roller blades.

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Hans is the Yoda of this movie. So wise. So sage.

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Little baby Joshua Jackson!

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Oh, movie, I don’t need you to tell me when Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch is playing.

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Do I need to call Social Services on this 22 year old movie?

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Again, this movie is really delivering on the 90’s awesomeness. Roller blading through the mall?!

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The movie the made quacking a haunting battle cry to all 90’s kids.

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It’s so convenient that the entire team is in this one Chemistry class, despite the fact that some of them look like they are 5 years apart in age.

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Gordon, stop quacking!

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Don’t we all, Banks. Let the rich kid play, Ducks! The cake-eater has two more movies to do.

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This has to be either the weakest net ever or this puck just defied the laws of physics, right?

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What publication is this that has front page headlines about a Minnesota Pee-Wee hockey team?

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Haha hijinks. Even as a kid, I thought Emilio laughed weird.

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Yeah, go for it, Bombay. She will never be able to resist you in that Cosby sweater. What woman could?

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Does Disney have a contractual stipulation that there must be a contrived romance that nobody watching the movie will really care about and that won’t last into the sequel?

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Again, what is this “Hockey Publication” and where did they get these pictures of these pee-wee hockey coaches? I would really like to see a Newsroom like TV show about this paper.

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What kind of douchebag father isn’t going to root for his son’s team? I don’t care how rich your friends are.

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Aw, Banks. You took the stick out of your butt. Presh. See you in MD2!

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Um, Bombay, you need to win. Haven’t you seen a Disney sports movie?

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You just know that they were so stoked on this shot. “Aw man, this is going to look so cool.”

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I cannot believe this worked. I’m supposed to believe that these kids who are growing up on the ice have never seen someone do a scratch spin?

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Flying V! Ducks fly together!

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Bombay, you are not helping the “Coach’s Pet” taunts that he has been getting. Also, what exactly has Charlie done to elicit this confidence? Other than let you bone his mom.

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QUACK, QUACK, QUACK! Now THAT’S how you end a Disney sports movie.md35 Wah-wah, Hawks. It’s because you didn’t have a humorous yet cool chant and, most importantly, because you weren’t having fun out there.md36 Hold the phone. Bombay is leaving his lucrative law career to possibly be a minor league hockey player? At his age?

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It must really suck for Charlie that he is the only one of these kids with a present parent. She really cramps his style.

Who wants to go watch this movie on Netflix now?  Sorry if I spoiled it for you.

Ellen

Totally Rad Pop Culture Items from My Childhood That I Wish I Still Had

Life is full of regrets, everyone knows that.  The following are my life’s biggest.

bsc1) Babysitters Club T-Shirt – This was so rare and awesome that even the internet couldn’t help me find it again.  Back in 1994, little Ellen loved her Scholastic book order catalogs.  Many of them featured a special offer at the back where you could join the Baby-Sitters Club Fan Club.  So exclusive.  So VIP.  I begged my mom for months and finally, she caved.  Among the membership benefits was the coolest t-shirt you have ever seen.  It was bright and colorful with hip phrases like “Best Friends Forever” and “Mary-Ann + Logan”, but worst of all, it was big enough on me back then that I could still totally rock it to this day.  Sigh.  This one hurts the most.

Dtv_romancin2) DTV Romancin’ VHS Recording – Back in the late 80s to early 90s, Disney Channel tried to cash in on the MTV cash cow and make music videos to popular songs using clips from their cartoons.  These music videos would often appear between their cartoons and sometimes they would air specials.  My favorite of these specials was DTV Romancin’ (also aired as DTV Valentines).  It had Chip and Dale dancing to Madonna, the cast of Bambi wooing to Lionel Richie’s “Hello”, and just about every clip of a phone from a Disney cartoon played with “I Just Called to Say I Love You”.  Needless to say, I wore this VHS out.

902103) 90210 Blow Dryer – I was far too young to care about this 90210 blow dryer, but I felt like the coolest 1st grader on the black when I would (attempt to) blow dry my hair with this beauty.  It doesn’t matter that it wasn’t a very good blow dryer, it only mattered that it was aqua green and purple and was emblazoned with that zip code.  In my head, it was the blow dryer that Kelly, Brenda, and Donna used.

full house4) Full House Michelle Scrapbook – Have you ever wanted to look at pictures of episodes of Full House?  Then have I got the book for you!  This book has it all.  Michelle gives all the dirt, like how Uncle Joey is so silly!  And how Uncle Jesse is so cool!  Did you know that DJ loves Steve?  Or that Stephanie thinks you are so “rude”?  (Mainly I wish I still had this one so that I could marvel at how obsessed I was with this stupid book).

beauty5) Handheld Beauty and the Beast Game – I blame this game for making me so easily addicted to games on my iPhone.  I was never great at your Nintendos and your Playstations, but even I could handle three buttons.  Dodge left, dodge right, and of course, “MAGIC”!  The premise was pretty basic, because those three buttons won’t allow for much.  At first you hide from the beast, but then you kiss him and then you hide from Gaston so that you can get to the beast and kiss him and finally, you escape the mob led by Gaston so that you can get to the beast and kiss him so that he becomes the “handsome” prince.  It’s a wonder that I ended up with even a shred of feminist sensibilities.

$T2eC16J,!)sE9swm(vm4BS!TdnQu5w~~60_356) Spice Girls Pin – When I was in fifth grade, one of my friends got this set of five pins that spelled out SPICE.  We divvied up the pins, each girl getting the pin with the Spice Girl that they most embodied.  See that “P” with Ginger? That was all mine.  Somehow, as a 10 year old, I was Ginger Spice.  Probably because I had the closest thing resembling red hair, was terrible at sports, and hated Posh.

little mermaid7) Little Mermaid Sheets – At the age of 3, I was so hard core about The Little Mermaid that it was a bit ridiculous.  I had the entire soundtrack memorized before I had seen the movie.  When I finally DID see the movie, I stood on my seat and sang along with the whole thing.  I mainly wish that I still had these sheets because I still have a twin bed and would SO sleep on these bad boys.

giga8) 101 Dalmatians Giga Pet – I was very explicit with Santa.  I am a Giga Pet girl and NOT a Tamagotchi girl.  Also, don’t even think about getting me a cat.  Apparently, this led Santa to a 101 Dalmatians Giga Pet because it was the same Christmas that the live action movie came out, and I was more than happy to receive my little demanding dalmatian.

photo9) Minnie paraphernalia – This girl had a lot of Minnie Mouse paraphernalia.  It is unclear as to whether this was due to an obsession on my part or on my mother’s part, who was buying all of it.  Either way, I loved Minnie Mouse and demanded to see her almost immediately upon my first arrival at Disneyland.  The item I most wish I still had that I cannot find is this tubular neon school folder, but I am pretty sure I wore it to tatters.

disney afternoon10) Disney Afternoon soundtrack tape – I loved Disney afternoon, but what kid in the early 90s with Disney Channel didn’t?  And almost more than the cartoons themselves, I loved the theme songs, mainly because of this cassette tape.  I may or may not have most of these downloaded to my iTunes.  And I may or may not bust them out on a regular basis.  And I may or may not be able to still do the breakdown on the Tale Spin theme song.  “Spin it, let’s begin it, bear and grin it when you’re in it, you can win it in a minute when you spin it, spin it, spin it. So spin it.  Tale Spin!”

What item from your childhood are you most upset that your mom talked you into throwing out?

Ellen