5/27/12

Happy Birthday Christopher Lee

You are NINETY YEARS YOUNG today! When I was a kid, I used to sneak out of my room at night, grab a VHS off of one of our many shelves of movies (Specifically, a tape containing a collection of vampire movie trailers.) and be absolutely terrified by your portrayal of Dracula. Especially in "Dracula A.D. 1972" in which you killed a plethora of hippies.

That collection of trailers lead me to Hammer Films, which were so different than the Universal classics I had known up to that point. The Hammer Films in turn lead me to the idea that filmmaking was possible. Their homespun feel made making my own movies suddenly seem like something I might actually be able to do. (I hope you take that as a compliment and not an insult.) That lead to the cliche obsession with our own home video camera in which we made our own horror movies, that lead to college where I started making my own zombie movies. And all of THAT finally lead up to...well, I'm still working on that...

But the point is, you made an impact. A huge one. And if I feel that way, how many other thousands and thousands of adoring fans must feel the same way.

Little did I know that you would still be issuing power performances in so many of the movies that I love right here in 2012. And it isn't just your performances by the way, it's your behind-the-scenes footage. I'm pretty sure everyone on the set of "Lord of the Rings" was a little bit scared of you. In a good way. (See: Peter Jackson explaining how you told him you know the sound a man really makes when he's dying of a stab wound when he was directing you in your Two Towers death scene.)

Anyway, cheers to you. For your longevity. For your craft. For the fact that you are a fanboy, nay, fanman, who reads Tolkien every single year in a regular rotation. For the fact that you are powerful and scary and you make one seriously wicked Dracula.

The take away? May we all be so lucky as to begin doing what we love and keep at it the way you have. Happy Birthday good man! Thanks for all the thrills!



5/21/12

Come Play Movie Quote-Off With Me!

As I get busier professionally, I find that I am losing the time I usually have to wax philosophical here on my blog. I'm entering a particularly busy phase, but I've started something new and fun over at Born For Geekdom's Facebook Page. (Which is linked to BFG's Twitter account as well. Though I do make posts on Twitter that don't show up on Facebook. If you like ridiculous pictures of me, you'll find an embarrassing amount of them there.)

ANYWAY.

I started choosing a movie of the week. Every Monday, I replace the Cover Photo on BFG's facebook page and kick off the quote-off. Just leave a comment with your favorite quote. That's it. It's that simple. But it's really fun. I'll be back blogging here in no time. Seriously, it will probably only be a couple of weeks. But in the meantime, this keeps me connected to the geek-o-sphere when I'm feeling way too grown up and responsible.

So far, movies of the week have been...

1. The Big Lebowski
2. Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
3. Ghostbusters

So that's it! Come play quote-off with me!

Don't forget, there's a list of fan favorite blog entries on the "About the Raving Fangirl" page here. You can also find links to my Facebook, Twitter and YouTube on the revolutionarily titled "Twitter and Facebook" page. (All are located in the tabs at the top of this page, in case you have a hard time finding that kind of stuff. So go on...look up there. See? There it is! Good job!)

5/14/12

More Famous Female Duos of TV and Why I'm Still Talking About This

Ah, the dysfunction of Liz and Jenna...
When I wrote about this topic the first time, there wasn't that much going on TV or film-wise for female friendships. There were several iconic examples, but TV shows rarely passed the Bechdel test. Female friendship plots either revolved entirely around men or were used as wacky sub-plots.

Well, a lot has changed over the last few years. Take a look at a few of the female friendships and buddy storylines that can be found in some of the newest TV shows today. And on a sidenote, can I just tell you how weird it is to watch culture change? I started writing about women in film and TV professionally about five years ago and so much has changed since then. Which tells me a couple of things.

1. That speaking up makes a difference. And...

2. That spending money makes a difference. When people showed up in droves to see "Bridesmaids" and even "Sex and the City" (Don't get me started, I hated that movie, but that's beside the point.) it showed that audiences could actually be interested in movies that didn't just revolve around men. I've never been so satisfied to sit back and see that something I feel like I once had to scream about has now not only been addressed, but things are starting to change. Just look at the evidence.

1. 30 Rock - Jenna Marone (Jane Krakowski) and Liz Lemon (Tina Fey)

2. Parks and Recreation - Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler) and Ann Perkins (Rashida Jones)

4. Up All Night - Reagan (Christina Applegate) and Ava (Maya Rudolph)

5. New Girl - Cece (Hannah Simone) and Jess (Zooey Deschanel)

There's even more female friendships than the few mentioned here. Add yours in the comments section.

Also worthy of mention, there's a whole cast of powerful female characters on "Once Upon a Time". And the best thing about that is the fact that there's some written complexity there. They don't all have to be friends or like each other, because we have (Hold your breath now!) character variety!

5/9/12

Post #501 - Turn and face the strange...

Sing it with me now, "CHANGES!"




 
If I would've had any time to think ahead at all, I totally would've joined the 501st and blogged about it for my 501st entry. But that would've required time. And I have none of that at present. But my life is changing a fair bit at the moment. So hey, you can't go wrong with some good-old-fashioned Bowie to celebrate.

 

5/8/12

Farewell Sendak and Thank You for Everything


Run Home Jack


No matter how hard I will it to be otherwise, my brain puts two and two together by reaching out into the ether of pop culture and plucking out strands that slowly weave together realizations. It would be nice if things dawned on me in, oh I don't know...complete thoughts. But hey, I'll take what I can get.

As such, there are things rolling around up there in my mind. I suspect my subconscious is gathering up for some kind of complete thought. But until I figure out what that is, here are the tiny little pieces of reference that keep popping into my thoughts without my permission.  

1. "Run Home Jack!"

I've been thinking of the movie "Hook" almost non-stop lately. Don't know why exactly. But specifically the part where the pirates are accidentally chanting, "Run Home Jack" by accident when what they mean to say is "Home Run Jack". That and the fantastic score. Funny thing is, I haven't been able to watch this movie since I returned from Romania all the way back in December of 2005. The lost boys just hit too close to home when I think of the children I worked with there. It's just too much emotionally. But perhaps that has something to do with why it's banging down the door to my memory now...though I don't know how. 


5/5/12

Four Tanks and a Kickstarter: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Support Independent Artists

So there's this guy...Larry Longstreth. I've blogged and kind of raved about him before. Jake and I fully support him. And also, we're more than a little jealous of his chutzpah. If only we could all dig our heels in on the idea of filmmaking the way Larry has. But Longstreth is a dreamer. And a doer. (This is starting to sound like a car commercial, isn't it?) Shorter version...okay...

Amid his many ideas and projects, Longstreth is also working on an animated series about an MMORPG game. There's nifty concept art and clever writing and for crying out loud, it's been backed by theonering.net. But to create an entire season, the project needs backers. That's where you come in.

Four Tanks and a Healer now has a Kickstarter account. CHECK IT OUT!

Look at the link. Make a donation, even a small one. Why, you ask? I'll give you ten reasons why...

1. Because the concept deserves to be brought to life.

2. Because there's SO much junk "entertainment" out there, don't you want to have a hand in bringing something decent into being? Something different?

Avengers, ASSEMBLE! (Movie Review)

Remember that time I used to be a professional writer? Every once in a great while, I still do that. My Avengers review has posted over at the Orlando Attractions Magazine blog. And hey, since you have nine billion other reviews to choose from, I'd like to vote that you read mine instead. Because I was so excited about the movie that I let a half a dozen typos slip through. You know...for authenticity. And charm? Okay, I was just really busy doing video production stuff and didn't have the time to proofread. But still, you can bet it includes a wee bit o' feminist ranting. It would hardly be an Audrey review without it, right? Right.