in other news…

AKA a random mash-up of Life Stuff, movies, some fangirling, etc.

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-Prayers for my family (especially my parents) would be greatly appreciated.  We need all the prayer support you can give.  Thank you.

-Also, please sign the Charlie Gard petition.  Please.

-This blog is eight followers away from hitting two hundred.  You guys are awesome, and like I said before, I’ll be hosting a giveaway once we reach that goal.  And you won’t want to miss the giveaway, because it’s rather amazing.

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-I’m currently working on a 3:10 to Yuma fanfiction.  It’s going quite well.  Sometimes I put more effort into researching for fanfics than for my original writing because I don’t want to be called out by the entire online community.  Anyway, all that research has been interesting – and now I really, really want to tour Yuma Territorial Prison.

-Recently watched Moana and Pocahontas, so Brave and Princess and the Frog are the only Disney princess movies I haven’t seen yet.  Moana was gorgeous and Pocahontas was okay (but I did dig the fact that Christian Bale voiced Thomas – one of the few Not Annoying characters in the film).

-My grandparents got back from a vacation just yesterday; they’ve been celebrating their fiftieth wedding anniversary. ❤  Grandparents are great.  Just sayin’.

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-A friend of mine sent me some Bible verses through Facebook chat and I wanted to share them here because they spoke to me: But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.  Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.” (I Corinthians 15:57-58)

-My older siblings and I have been watching BBC’s Sherlock (on VidAngel), and the last episode we watched was ‘A Scandal in Belgravia’.  I have a crush on, y’know, almost half the characters.  But especially John. (Especially John.)  And it’s so fun to see all the Famous Quotes in their proper context, for once.

-I want to watch Dunkirk so much.  So. Much.

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-I plan to go for my driver’s license as soon as possible, which is weird, because I used to loathe the idea of going through all the tests and such.  But after seeing how useful it is to know how to drive, I’m totally on board with the idea.

That’s it for now.  Hope you’re all having a marvelous week! 🙂

Eva

eight of my favorite westerns

Y’all know (or should) that westerns are my favorite genre, so this post was long overdue.

~The Magnificent Seven (1960) – Are you surprised?  My favorite movie, my favorite western, and it’s perfection in almost every way.  And the score is worth a listen or two, even if you’ve never watched the film.

~3:10 to Yuma (1957) – A tense, gripping western with a great cast and a great ending.  Love it!

~The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (1966) – Sitting through over three hours of three guys fighting over some treasure might not be everyone’s idea of epic, but it’s mine.  You’ve heard the theme song a million times…now it’s time to watch the movie that goes with it. #thatshowdownthough

~High Noon (1952) – Gary Cooper’s performance alone makes High Noon a film you need to see, whether you enjoy westerns or not.  Come to think of it, several of the movies on this list live up to the ‘great movies, not just great westerns’ thing.

~Rio Bravo (1959) – My newest favorite.  Dude is easily my favorite character, but almost all them are likable, in one way or another.  And the music!  The songs that Dude and Colorado (and Stumpy) sing, of course, but also that eerie Mexican tune that was played at the Alamo… *shivers*  I dig it.

~True Grit (2010) – Haven’t seen this one in a while because my family misplaced our DVD.  But Jeff Bridges is the BOSS.  Not to mention Hailee Steinfeld.  Overall, the film is a carefully crafted masterpiece from beginning to end, and I love the soundtrack so much that I now own the CD (very rare for me).

~Hidalgo (2004) -A western set (mostly) in Arabia.  It’s a unique concept and one that this film pulls off exceptionally well.  Hidalgo is a rich, vivid experience, with an addictive ‘Lawrence of Arabia’ feel to it.  “Let ‘er buck!”

~The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962) -I’ve praised this movie before in my review, so I’ll leave you with a link.

Do you spot any favorite westerns on this list?  What are some of your favorite westerns?

Eva

movie review: the sea hawk

This post is part of the Swashathon hosted by Movies Silently.

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I inherited my love of swashbucklers from my grandfather, who is a huge fan of the genre in general – and of Errol Flynn’s films in particular.  While I don’t care for Errol Flynn much, old-fashioned swashbucklers are a big favorite of mine.  The glamorous action, feats of derring-do, music, romance, and gorgeous costumes all come together beautifully to create a kind of film that can still entertain today. (I know there are swashbucklers made today.  But the old ones were the best, in my opinion.)

On to the review!

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As Spain prepares an armada to invade England, British privateer Geoffrey Thorpe (Errol Flynn) embarks on a mission to loot Spanish ships. When he captures the vessel carrying ambassador Don Jose Alvarez de Cordoba (Claude Rains), the dashing captain falls for his niece, the beautiful Dona Maria (Brenda Marshall), who settles comfortably in England. Dedicated to protecting British interests, Thorpe heads out to sea on a dangerous expedition that may determine the country’s fate.

‘The Sea Hawk’ is easily my favorite Errol Flynn movie…and my favorite swashbuckler.

Stuff I love about it (because lists are easier than an in-depth review):

~The music – Nominated for a best score Oscar, and it definitely deserved that nomination.

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~The romance between Geoffrey and Maria.  Yes, it’s a little clichéd and predictable, but so sweet.  I like how she starts out by hating/despising him but then softens.  Actually, Maria carries most of the romantic subplot by herself, as Geoffrey doesn’t have much time to think about his lady love in the jungle and the galleys.  It’s enough to bring a lump to your throat, the way Maria mourns for him. (That scene where she’s too late to warn him?  GAH.)

~How the jungle scenes are sepia-toned instead of black & white.  I dig it.

~All the other Sea Hawks.  You don’t see much of them, but they’re cool guys.

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~I LOVE THE QUEEN’S FINAL SPEECH SO MUCH.  You have to remember, that in 1940, England was at war with Germany (and had been for a year already), so I’m fairly certain that Queen Elizabeth I’s speech at the end was a good bit of patriotism that any British citizen would have found more than applicable to their current circumstances.

We have tried by all means in our power to avert this war.  We’ve no quarrel with the people of Spain or of any other country.  But when the ruthless ambition of a man threatens to engulf the world, it becomes the solemn obligation of all free men to affirm that the earth belongs not to any one man, but to all men.  And that freedom is the deed and title to the soil on which we exist.

Honestly, the only thing I would change about this movie is to have Basil Rathbone instead of Harry Daniell play Lord Wolfingham .  Basil Rathbone would’ve provided a chilling presence in the English court instead of a rather wimpy one.  Though, I suppose no-one would’ve been surprised at Wolfingham’s duplicity, then.

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The swordfights are awesome, as usual.  I’ve read the Michael Curtiz didn’t put safety tips on the ends of the blades because he wanted the actors’ reactions to be real.  Dangerous, but it made for some great scenes.

‘The Sea Hawk’ is a glowing, adventurous, swoony film, the very epitome of a swashbuckler.  Highly recommended to all fans of the genre.

Eva

announcing the Alfred Hitchcock Blogathon 2017!

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*squeep*

Last year, I said that I’d be hosting another Alfred Hitchcock blogathon, and it looks like it’s time.  Hitchcock’s birthday is August 13th – sorry I didn’t give a more advanced heads-up about this whole thing; I forgot/the time got away from me – and the blogathon will be held from August 11th-13th.  The previous blogathon was lots of fun and I’m hoping that everything will go just as smoothly this year.

To explain things for any newcomers…

A blogathon works like this: if you want to participate, leave a comment with a link to your blog and what you’ll be writing about (review of a Hitchcock film, something about Hitchcock’s life…basically anything, as long as it’s Hitchcock-related).  I’ll add you to this post’s roster (down below the event buttons/posters/whatever you want to call them) and on August 11th, 12th, or 13th, you’ll publish your post and leave a link to it in the comments on a blog post I’ll set up for that purpose.

my 2016 ‘announcing the Alfred Hitchcock Blogathon’ post

As there are lots and lots of topics that could be covered in this blogathon – movie reviews, Hitchcock’s life, the actors/actresses/composers/directors/designers he worked with…and so, so much more! – duplicate topics will not be allowed. (Sorry.  I hate that, too, but we could end up with five reviews of North by Northwest, or something like that.)

Anyway, here are some buttons you can display on your blog’s sidebar, post on Facebook, etc., to promote the upcoming blogathon.

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Blogathon Participants:

~Experience Film – EFC Classics: Vertigo (1958) – a psychoanalysis of the film and its characters

~Cristina Wehner – The Lodger (1927)

~Movie Movie Blog Blog – North by Northwest (1959)

~Phyllis Loves Classic Movies – Thoughts on some of Hitchcock’s British films

~The Lonely Critic Dial ‘M’ for Murder (1954)

See you there!

Eva

my top ten favorite TV shows

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~Combat! -Most of the episodes in C! would make excellent war films by themselves.  In many episodes, the writing is brisk, the characters are realistic, and the emotions and tensions are real.  The best WWII show ever made.

~Rat PatrolMy first real TV show obsession.  Yes, it’s campy and cheesy – but isn’t that true of so many great shows?  The characters are what made me fall in love with RP.  From Tully to Dietrich to Moffitt, I love ’em all.

~Hogan’s HeroesOkay.  I used to dislike this show because I didn’t enjoy the humor, but I like it lots now.  Again, it’s the characters.  And the humor.  I mean, I laugh out loud quite a bit at HH now, and it’s a great show overall, especially because it gave me three of the four or five Russian words I know.

~The FugitiveI’ve only seen a few episodes of this, but I *cough* kind of like it better than the Harrison Ford movie *cough*.  Stories of falsely accused people have always struck a huge chord with me, for some reason, and this is, like, the ultimate example of that.  Plus, David Janssen’s acting ability blows me away.

~Psych – I’ve watched most of these episodes to death.  Still love it.

~Monk – Ditto.

~BBC Robin Hood – I can’t express my adoration for this show.  The characters!  The music!  The writing!  It’s all so, sooooooo good.  Btw, my favorite character used to be Will, but I’m pretty sure it’s Allan now.  Especially in Season 3 (*goes away and cries forever*).

~Get Smart – Normally, I dislike the type of humor found in Get Smart (slapstick, y’know).  But there are tons of genuinely funny moments; I’m grinning just thinking about them.  I don’t sit down and watch the episodes these days, but my little brothers love + watch them frequently, so I still get a good dose of Maxwell Smart almost every week.

~Wanted: Dead or Alive – My favorite Western TV show.  Steve McQueen does such a good job, and the eps have heart.

~Flashpoint – Canada has produced some wonderful shows, and my favorite is definitely Flashpoint.  The team-family is the best thing about it, with Spike being his own special kind of awesome.  And the finale is one of the greatest, most gripping TV finales I’ve ever seen.  Ever.

What are some of your favorite TV shows?

Eva

 

“I don’t feel anything emotionally except rage.”

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My introduction to the Dark Knight was through The Lego Movie, where he is anything but dark (even though he only works in black…and sometimes very dark grey).  Emmet and Wyldstyle and Vitruvius took up almost all of my attention in that flick – Batman was good for a few laughs, but not much more.

Then, two things happened:

1) Adam West died, which (briefly) brought the attention of the entire internet, myself included, to Batman.

2) My brother bought The LEGO Batman Movie.

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Because of the feels I felt while watching The LEGO Movie, I was kinda expecting/hoping that TLBM would move me emotionally, amidst all the jokes and sight gags, and it totally did.  Yes, it was one of the funniest movies I’ve ever watched (still makes me laugh out loud – literally), but there were also hints that, in a more serious movie, Batman would be really, really epic/heartbreaking.  And I’d wanted to watch the BatBale films for a while.

THEN my brother bought Batman Begins. (He buys everything these days.)  And I watched it.  And loved it.  And loved Batman. (He’s now my second favorite super-hero – after Captain America.)  Before Batman Begins, I’d only seen Christian Bale in Newsies and Little Women, and I really dug seeing him in such a dramatic role.  It’s not like I have a serious crush on him, or anything, but I was really impressed.

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My siblings and I decided to skip The Dark Knight (at least for now) because the Joker is freaky.  Really freaky. 

I bought The Dark Knight Rises at Giant Tiger a couple days later.  And, well, I didn’t like it as much as Batman Begins because, y’know, Batman is hardly in it at all.  Neither is Bruce Wayne, for that matter.  Anne Hathaway was great, as usual, with her portrayal of Catwoman.  I’ve really enjoyed Anne Hathaway in everything I’ve seen her in, and TDKR continued that tradition.

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Anyway, what this post is trying to say is that, while Batman may have his flaws (just like his movies), exploring this facet of the DC-verse has been amazing so far. (Also, I’ve discovered that I have a weird fascination with Scarecrow, but I absolutely promise that it’s nothing like my crush on Ben Wade.  I AM NOT CRUSHING ON HIM.)

Let’s fangirl in the comments!

Eva

my favorite Canadian things

Because #Canada150.

// Maple Syrup //

Funny thing: I used to hate maple syrup.  But now I love it.  I guess it’s the Canadian coming out in me.

// Literature //

There’s Lucy Maud Montgomery.  Duh.  Her books are the BEST.  But there’s also Eric Wilson, who wrote killer (no pun intended) mysteries for young teens that just about anyone can enjoy.  And Eric Walters bears mentioning as well.  He writes in a bunch of different genres, with my personal favorite book of his being Just Deserts.  For adult readers, there’s Emma Donoghue, who wrote Room. (I haven’t read it myself, but I’ve heard very good things about it.)

// Snow //

Summer has made me realize all over again how much I love winter (and dislike summer).  And there’s nowhere better than Canada for lots and lots of snow.

// Actors & Actresses //

William Shatner, Michael J. Fox, Mary Pickford, Christopher Plummer, Ryan Gosling, Glenn Ford, Donald Sutherland, Hume Cronyn, Raymond Burr, Megan Follows, Will Arnett…and the list goes on.  Did any of those names surprise you?

// Milk //

Our milk comes in individual bags, people, and it’s AWESOME.

// TV Shows //

There’s so many great ones!  Flashpoint, Road to Avonlea, Murdoch Mysteries, Sue Thomas F.B. Eye, both Anne of Green Gables miniseries…and those are just a fraction of the Canadian shows available.  Truly amazing.

// Money //

We have plastic bills.  They are virtually unrippable.  Coolest money ever.

// Other Little Things I Love About Canada //

Our national anthem.  Fireworks on Victoria Day.  July 1st, 1867.  Inuksuk.  Our last Prime Minister, Stephan Harper.  Girlbert and Walter and Jem and Shirley Blythe are CANADIAN, people – therefore, all Canadian girls have more right to crush on them than anyone else (but don’t worry – we’re not selfish).  We invented basketball.  Huskies.  All the maple trees.  The American side of Niagara Falls is prettier than the Canadian side…but we Canadians get to gaze at the American side allllll we want.  We have $1 and $2 coins.  Our flag – it’s simple and beautiful and very recognizable.  The Stratford Festival.  OUR MILITARY.  Tim Hortons – because Timbits.  Beavertails.  The Toronto Zoo.

GO CANADA!!!

Eva