“THE AVENGERS” – 4 1/2 STARS

The final Twilight movie is like a porn film with action figures

The End of the Twilight Era: Breaking Dawn Part 2 Movie Review ( Minor Spoilers )

I don’t particularly hate Twilight but I don’t particularly love it either. I just like to watch it because it is fun to watch. Plus there are hot guys who strip for no other reason than to show their washboard abs. Anyway, I’m a sucker for sequels. There’s just something about a ‘TO BE CONTINUED’ that keeps me wanting for more. It’s no surprise that I’ve probably seen almost all James Bond films, Resident Evil films, Lord of the Rings films, Harry Potter films and just about every other movie that has a sequel. Movies with sequels are compelling to watch.

Everyone probably knows the plot to the last Twilight film. But let’s just pretend that you’ve been hiding in a cave so here’s the plot: Bella and Edward have an immortal baby but apparently, because of faulty intel, the Volturi clan (a group of elite and powerful Italian vampires who surprisingly have British accents) is led to believe that Bella and Edward have created a vampire child. Turing a child into a vampire is a big No-No for the Volturis since it violates one of their many absurd vampire laws. So the Volturi come in full force to the territory of the Cullens in order to punish them for breaking the law.

Okay, the whole brouhaha could have been avoided if only Irina, the one who provided false intel, communicated with the Cullens. I mean, come on, in the age of cellphones, the internet, Facebook and Twitter, couldn’t she just have at least sent a text message  for confirmation. Something along the lines of “Hello Bella and Edward, I happen to have seen your daughter levitating, just confirming, have you created some kind of monster child?” Or she could have gone to Facebook or Twitter. I’m sure the proud parents of Renesmee would announce to the whole world that they have created an immortal child. I bet Bells and Ed would tweet, “#Renesmee can drink blood and or normal human food if she chooses to. Oh and she has super powers to boot!” Bet they’ll even add Instagram photos of their rapidly growing child. The proud parents would be happily posting pictures of Renesmee every 5 seconds since their baby girl is growing at an exceptionally rapid rate. But sadly, that is not to be since the movie producers have to recoup their investment. Heck, half of the movie’s budget goes to the insanely ridiculous salaries of the actors. The producers need to make some money so plot twists are necessary!

Breaking Dawn Part 2 is a surprisingly fun movie to watch. I mean, the ending is so cool! Let’s just say it is reminiscent of the ending of the movies Sourcecode and The Prince of Persia. I don’t want to give anything away. But there were several vampires who lost their heads.There were also many wolves who got killed. Or did they? I’m just trying to mess with your head.

The movie starts slow. In the first few scenes we get to see how Bella enjoys being a vampire. Who knew that becoming a vampire is equivalent to watching everything in HD (Hi-Definition) and in Dolby surround sound? Just to prove that she’s really a vampire, we see Bella jumping and running around like crazy. There’s even one scene where she’s glistening under the sunlight. I asked my sister why vampires get sparkly under the sunlight and she explained rather scientifically that since vampires have no circulatory system, their bodies are probably made of minerals. Hence, they sparkle under the sunlight. Okay, like that makes a lot of sense.I must add that Bella is meant to be a vampire since she’s so stiff anyway.

In Breaking Dawn Part Deux there are gratuitous sex scenes between Bella and Edward but only this time, Bella has turned into a vampire. Is it just me or do vampires have a boring sex life? I kind of liked the sex scene in Breaking Dawn Part 1 back when Bella was still human. At least the bed gets torn apart. Nothing exciting happens in Part 2. They didn’t even trash their house. I thought that vampires sound like cats when they make love. They didn’t even make any noise.

The most awkward and accidentally funny scene was when Jacob stripped in front of Charlie, Bella’s father. That was AWKWARD. The director figured that seeing Jacob’s pecs and abs would bring more dollars in. The only reason Jacob’s character has been added is to make young girls swoon. Poor Charlie, he must have been traumatized after seeing a young boy stripping naked in front of him.

What I didn’t like about the film are the strange scenes where Bella’s baby is obviously a fake CGI child. I don’t know why they couldn’t just hire a newborn baby to play the part. I know they had to get the baby to ‘stare’ in a certain way, but making the baby fake just makes it all the more creepy.

After five Twilight films, I still completely hate Alice’s wig. Can’t they get her a more natural looking hair? Her hair is totally distracting. Just like the other four Twilight films, the other characters are relegated to the sidelines. Most of their characters are underdeveloped and serve only to drive the plot forward. It’s all about Edward and Bella. There is however, one notable vampire named Garrett, played by Lee Pace (from Pushing Daisies). His character is exceptionally sexy and just oozes with sex appeal. He has that whole disheveled, aging rock star look. But I doubt that they would make a Twilight: Middle Aged Edition. But boy is that character steaming hot. So instead of Edward, I’ll post Garrett’s picture here.

As to be expected from a movie that teaches abstinence first before marriage, Twilight Breaking Dawn Part 2 gets a happy ending. But does it really? Again, I’m just messing with your head.

Holy Mayhem!

The season finale for Revenge had such a surprise twist that I almost fell from my bed while I was watching the show. I was excited for Amanda/Emily when she had a change of heart and decided to spare the life of her father’s killer. I was happy when she decided to follow her heart and broke up with Daniel to go with Jack. But all is not what it seems, when dealing with season finales . I knew that it was all too good to be true. It is to be expected that there are going to be some surprises and twists in the end. But holy mayhem! Amanda/Emily has certainly released a can of worms! Her vengeance has led to CHAOS. I can’t wait for Season 2!

The Avengers: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

I have been remiss on my blogging duties. For great reason. I’ve gotten myself a regular job which means that I log in and log out on a regular basis and my time is accounted for. It’s been an adjustment as I’m used to working online and working when I feel like it:-) But I really do need the regular working hours since I’ve noticed that I tend to get lazy when working on my online projects.

Anyway, I finally saw Avengers. I was a little disappointed that I wasn’t able to watch it before the rest of humanity. I wasn’t able to go on an advanced screening of the movie since the preview screening fell on the same day that I was to leave for my vacation which I had planned months ago. I also had to watch it one week later than the movie’s first day opening since I was gone for a really long time.

Here’s my abbervieated review ( I have to sleep in a couple of minutes because I have to wake up early for work tomorrow morning)

The Good
I love Loki (Tom Hiddleston) in this movie. He makes for a great villain. His performance and his character’s lines were better in the movie Thor, but in Avengers, he is really given ample screen time. He stole the scenes in Thor, and now, he’s also stealing the scenes. He’s a really great actor and is keeping up with the tradition of British actors making the best movie villains. Could it be their accent?

If you remove all the other characters, I would have to say that the Avengers is an Iron Man movie. Robert Downey gets more screen time than the rest of the cast. He also gets the best lines. His character, Tony Stark, does much of the leg work and gets to save the day more than a couple of times.

What I love about the film is that it is an action film all the way through. In fact, the action is relentless. There’s so much to see and hear that one viewing isn’t enough.

The humor was really great. Almost all the characters got their funny lines. But as usual, Iron Man gets the best lines.

I really love seeing Captain America again. I loved his character Steve Rogers in the Captain America movie for having vulnerability, humanity and heroism. I look forward to a sequel of the Captain America film. It doesn’t hurt that Chris Evans is eye candy in this film.

Mark Ruffalo should get credit for creating a very amusing and humorous Dr. Banner. I can’t say I’m a fan of the Hulk.

Pepper Potts makes a cameo in this film. Stan Lee plays the “Where’s Waldo” game again. Try to spot him in this film.

The Bad

I would have really wanted to get more of Captain America. Chris Evan’s Capt’n has the best pecs and abs among the lot, but his character comes off as rather too uptight. Could it be his tight blue and striped tights?

 

I would also have loved to see more of Thor but all he does is fly around with his mighty hammer.

 

 

Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) literally turns bad which isn’t really at all that bad. But he’s really such a badass in this movie and I mean it in a good way. I’m really seeing him now as more of an action hero. He has the potential of making it big in the action films. He certainly has the gravitas and the physique to pull it off.

Hulk turns bad in this film as well.In the movie, The Hulk ( the one with Edward Norton ), the green giant was really menacing. In this movie, he is more like a pared down version. The character gets to do slapstick comedy in The Avengers though which isn’t really a bad thing.

The Ugly

The plot is thin. If you think about it, Loki just wants to get revenge on Thor. To get his revenge, he made a deal with a bunch of aliens which has agreed to invade planet Earth for Loki in exchange for the powerful cube ( which was featured on Captain America ) called the Tesseract. The cube is basically a rubik’s cube-shaped battery of unlimited power.

It’s really unclear what Loki’s master plan was although the gist is this: he plans on causing dissent among the superheroes so he could divide and then conquer.

Things get smashed up with the help of the superheroes and a big green giant.

The action scenes are too fast that my brain was just trying to suck the information in. I believe I know what the ‘slow motion’ scenes are about. The director, Joss Whedon, should have used more ‘slow mo’ scenes to give the viewers a breather. The execution of the action scenes also needed some cleaning up.

I believe if J.J. Abrams directed this movie, it would have come out cleaner and more gripping. The scenes in Avengers are too haphazardly done. There is also no one scene that stands out which is important for a big movie like this one. The adage ‘less is more’ really applies to this film. This movie doesn’t need more action scenes but rather just a few action scenes that are properly executed. No scene stands out for me.

Overall, the movie was really fun. The Avengers movie is really a culmination of the efforts of Marvel. All their superhero films were really leading up to this movie. This movie really delivers on every level although it’s not a perfect film. Is it enjoyable? Yes, very. In fact, I’m planning on watching it again.

Facebook Bikini Controversy

My niece’s schoolmate is embroiled in a recent local controversy. Apparently, the school administators won’t allow her to participate in her graduation rites tomorrow all because she posted a picture of herself wearing a bikini. She posted the said picture on Facebook. I’m a bit disappointed by the way my alma mater handled the matter. The girl shouldn’t be banned from participating in her graduation rites. First and foremost, the school has nothing to do with her personal life. Secondly, wearing a bikini doesn’t make you evil or immoral. I even have a similar photo on Facebook. Yup, I wore a bikini. And I posed with a work mate. And it was fun. I didn’t do it for anyone else but for my own satisfaction.

Wearing a bikini doesn’t mean that you are lewd or that you are promiscuous. I’m a Buddhist and I try to abide by the laws of the universe. I have never been promiscuous or anything. How I wish!! Heck, I’m planning on letting my dog wear a bikini.

I just want to point out that the school has no control over what their students do outside of it. I’d like to give a fine example. There’s even a Catholic university in the city that is known for having students engaged in prostitution. That university has not sanctioned anyone yet ( from what I know ). And sadly, there are still many students there engaged in the sex industry.

My siblings are lawyers and they told me that the school can’t ban the student from attending her own high school graduation. That’s from a legal standpoint. From a Buddhist standpoint, what is happening is a result of ‘close-mindedness’.

I have nothing against the school administrators since I know them personally. I went to school there not so many years ago. I do understand their point. But from a legal stand point, they can’t do zilch. Let the girl attend her graduation ceremony.

Anyway, just to point out. Buddhists wear bikinis too and there is nothing wrong with that. A relative of mine commented that when I became a Buddhist I started wearing ‘sexy clothes.’ As a Nichiren Buddhist, we are allowed to fully express ourselves. And we believe that we shouldn’t surpress our desires and our true nature. We should embrace it and allow our desires to be transmuted into enlightenment. And there is nothing wrong about wearing revealing clothes. It just happens to be very comfortable and I love comfort. What’s wrong is that some people have dirty minds. That is just a symptom of deeper issues which I won’t discuss here.

Tell me what you think about this issue. Leave a comment below.

Sounds Like: Stevie Nicks vs Joni Mitchell

Stevie Nicks song “Crystal’ sounds like Joni Mitchell’s “A Case of You”. Check it out.

Stevie Nicks: Best Celebrity Idol Mentor

I think Stevie Nicks is a great mentor for the Idols. Last week, under the tutelage of P. Diddy, the Idols underperformed. This week, under the mentorship of Stevie Nicks, the Idols received five standing ovations. She should come back often. Another favorite mentor is Mary J. Blige. Perhaps girls make better Idol mentors compared to guys? Who I would like to mentor the Idols would be…. Lady Gaga. Now that would be interesting.

Stevie Nicks seems to know how to bring out the best in the Idols’ performance. She also knows how to coach the Idols in showing some emotion and connecting with the songs that they are singing. Three Idol contestants, namely Colton, Hollie and Joshua became emotional. Elise also gave the best performance so far on the Idol stage. That’s all because of Stevie Nicks!

I loved Stevie Nicks and admit that I didn’t know her not until I saw the movie, Practical Magic. Her song, ” Crystal” was so wonderful. I even have the full soundtrack. Click on her video to listen to Stevie Nick’s song. Since I became obsessed with her song, I also started listening to her old songs that was revived by The Corrs. Her most famous song is “Landslide” which was sung by Elise and Colton. It was also revived by the Dixie Chicks a few years ago.

Separated at Birth: Sarah Geronimo vs Jessica Sanchez

Jessica Sanchez is starting to look like Sarah Geronimo!

 

 

 

Joshua Outperforms Jessica

I have a theory that Joshua and Jessica’s performance are inversely proportional. When Jessica performs well, Joshua gives a ho-hum performance. When Joshua performs well, Jessica gives a ho-hum performance. This week, Joshua certainly outperforms Jessica with his Mariah Carey rendition.

Jessica sang Beyonce’s song well but it wasn’t really that interesting to watch.

DeAndre gave a surprise performance by singing an Eric Benet song in falsetto. Falsetto is really hard to sustain but Deandre did it. I didn’t really appreciate falsetto until I started vocal coaching. Falsetto is really hard to do and to sustain. That’s why I applaud DeAndre for having the guts to sing the song mostly in falsetto.

Phillip Phillips is such a natural performer and he’s comfortable on stage. He’s always in the zone and it feels as if he’s not even competing but performing. He’s fun to watch and he’s got what Randy calls ‘mad talent’. He’ll certainly have a spot in the Top 5. I don’t know if he’s going to win though. But since he is attractive and a natural performer, he could very well surprise us.

For me, the best performance would have to come from Elise only because she seems to be in her element. She gave a really unpredictable performance and came out on top. This is the first time that she is showing some personality. I hope she continues to show what kind of artist she is. She may not win Idol but she has a good recording voice. Provided she can come up with really catchy songs, she could be a hit on radio. She reminds me a bit of Colbie Calliet.

Showing too much personality and not much improvement is Heejun. I like his bassy voice but he has got to stretch or die. He continues to give the same kind of performance every week relying only on his charming personality and not on his singing ability. It may be time to say byebye. But again, we could be in for a total surprise by tomorrow’s results!

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.