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Sunday at San Diego Comic Con Brings the Familiar and the New!

Comic Con 2018 b

 

Jeri Jacquin

Here it is, the final day, the day that I long for and at the same time the saddest day that it’s all ending. There is mileage on these feet to be sure and a case of uncomfortable seat-itis but at the same time knowing that all the people I only see once a year will again be gone.

This year was a little more enjoyable for me at a grandparent because I made time to see my dressed up in costume Batman (don’t say Batgirl – she doesn’t like it!) granddaughter seeing all her hero’s and the characters she adores. That would include the mixture of Peppa Pig and the awestruck when seeing her beloved PJ Masks in person. What totally wigged her out was seeing Batman again, and again, and again.

But, Naynay has a job to do so let’s jump in!

Supernatural

In Hall H, there is a feeling of crazy anticipation because it is Sunday at San Diego Comic Con 2018 and that can only mean one thing – Supernatural! There is something very special when the panel consisting of Jensen Ackles, Jared Padalecki, Misha Collins, and Alexander Calvert along with executive producer Andrew Dabb talking about their 14th season of the show and reaching the historic 300th episode.

What makes the Supernatural panel so much fun is the obvious chemistry between Ackles, Padalecki and Collins and the way they have also taken Calvert into their exclusive and humorous group. It is almost like watching brothers just rag on each other in the most biting and loving way possible. Of course this delights the 6,999 people that are in Hall H with cheers and even some egging on.

It’s going to get even darker (is that even possible?) in this season as fans are treated to a very eerie look at Jensen Ackles character Dean and his – well – transformation. There will also be a return of Kim Rhodes character of Jodi Mills and the Wayward Sisters. Is there more to the Rowena and Cas hint given?

Find out when Supernatural returns to the CW on October 11th.

riverdale

Riverdale comes to Hall H with a huge panel including Luke Perry, Skeet Ulrich, Camila Mendes, Casey Cott, Cole Sprouse, KJ Apa, Lili Reinhart, Madelaine Petsch Marisol Nichols, Mark Consuelos, Vanesa Morgan, Ashleigh Murray, Madchen Amick and executive producer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa and producers Jon Goldwater and Sarah Schehter. Moderated by Mrs. Mark Consuelos (aka Kelly Ripa), fans were teased with what is to come.

Ripa talks about her husband’s character and asks what is in store for his character. “His character is into everything. Right now he is focused in being a thorn in his daughter’s side. She is just as stubborn as he is so I think they are going to butt heads”.

I couldn’t have been more thrilled to see the next panel in Hall H – Mayans M.C. is the much anticipated spin off of the FX beloved series Sons of Anarchy. The panel started off with an ear splitting cheer for the shows creator Kurt Sutter (who I actually saw smile and it threw me off!) along with co-creator Elgin James.

The panel was filled with the new Mayan motorcycle club including JD Pardo as Ezekiel EZ Reyes, Clayton Cardenas, Sarah Bolger, Michael Irby, Carla Baratta, Antonio Jaramillo, Raoul Max Truillo, Danny Pino, Richard Cabral and the beloved Edward James Olmos.

The premise of the series is in the three year aftermath of Jax Teller and the Sons when EZ Reyes is released from prison and becomes a prospect for the Mayan MC. His older brother is already a member and shows his brother the ropes with a charter that is located on the California-Mexico border. Olmos is their father who owns a business and knows that the club is a difficult life.

JD Pardo may have a familiar face to some, but to Twilight fans he forever engrained in their hearts as part of THE TWILIGHT SAGA: Breaking Dawn Part 2. He has also done his time in television with the series S.W.A.T., The Messengers as well as Blood & Oil.

mayans

 Another familiar cast member is that of Richard Cabral who most recently played the psychotic burglar Duncan in the film BREAKING IN. He has also had his share of television roles including the outstanding characters of Hector Tonz/Isaac Castillo/ Sebastian De La Torre in the absolutely excellent series American Crime.

The one actor on that panel who needs no introduction because the sound of the fans cheering drowns out hearing his name is that of Edward James Olmos. Playing the role of Felipe Reyes in Mayans M.C., this actor is never far from the big screen or small. He has produced, directed and starred in some of the most beloved shows and memorable movies. I am excited to see the life he brings to this character.

Sutter also talks about the loose language and explains that the f-word is part of the world we live in now. “I’m not quite sure where the shift happened, but there is a lot more freedom in terms of language and we will be able to say ‘f**k’ on FX.” He also tells the fans with humor, “I always do a ‘f**k’ inventory at the end of every script and go, ‘oh, that’s way too much.’”

The creator was also asked if there would be any cross over between Sons of Anarchy and Mayans M.C. (you could hear a pin drop in that room waiting for the answer). “I’m really protective of that mythology and the way it ended and letting fans, whether they enjoyed it or not, to have that experience and for that idea of how that club continued. I really want to leave in the minds of the fans. Right now there’s no intersecting stories that will interfere with that, but Sons is a big world and there was a lot of peripheral players so there will be those kind of intersections.” I take that as an answer non-answer which can always be found with the cryptic Sutter.

Thank you FX from the bottom of this fans heart for bringing the anticipation for the new series which is set to premier Tuesday September 4th at 10 p.m. on FX.

Legion

Finally in Hall H, FX is hardly done with us as the break out his series by creator Noah Hawley LEGION bringing its panel of stars including Dan Stevens, Aubrey Plaza who plays Lenny, Navid Negahban as Farouk, writer/producer Nathaniel Halpern and executive producer John Cameron.

The panel started out quickly when Halpern was asked if he could tell the fans anything about Season 3. A quick and decisive ‘no’ was heard and that was that. Stevens, who plays David Haller, admitted to the audience, “I know that Lenny is obviously gonna have a part to play in it. We’re off together in some form. Syd’s a bit mad. But I don’t know very much at this stage.”

Then added, “If you know the comics at all, you know there’s the potential for this guy you have sympathy for to turn into one of the greatest villains in the universe!” It is Negahban who says, “I have never played a villain in my life. I think every villain looks at himself as a hero.”

It seems what the panel could agree upon is that they are confused and that, to me, is an amazing way to keep the fans guessing about the upcoming third season which returns to FX in 2019. Until then, keep the theories coming because I’m always interested to discover whether or not others see the series as I do and if they don’t, well, that can be fun too!

And with that, my reader friends, comes the end of the panels for me at San Diego Comic Con 2018. It is time for me to put the recorder, camera, pencil, pen, paper and anything else work related into my awesome Edna Mode bag and leave the hallowed room also known as Hall H.

jaycie and power rangers

It is time for me to go out and enjoy the rest of the day seeing Comic Con 2019 through the eyes of my granddaughter who can not get enough. I love what I do to be sure but it is also good to get a fresh perspective and see it all through the excited eyes of a kid in a Batman outfit with flashing tennis shoes and a cape that reads, “I’m Batman – not Batgirl!”

So until next year Comic-Con’ers – I hope your journey home was a safe one and that TSA didn’t give you too much trouble with the tons of goodie bags I know you left San Diego with!

 

 

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LEGION Takes us on an Unexpected Trip on Bluray

Legion 111

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Bluray from creator Noah Hawley from the Marvel Comics and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment comes an intense series on the search for what is truly real when part of the LEGION.

David Haller (Dan Stevens) has had problems most of his life. Hearing things and feeling out of control has landed him in the psychiatric ward. The problem is, Haller also has psychic abilities yet no one believes him. Haller also has a friend in another patient Lenny (Aubrey Plaza) and tries to help him stay together. Keeping him sane is when he falls for another patient Sydney Barrett (Rachel Keller). The difficulty in their relationship is that Sydney doesn’t like to be touched. When it does happen, she has the ability to change places with that person.

When Sydney is discharged from the hospital, Haller kisses her and that’s when things get even more out of control. The minds of Haller and Sydney change places and no one believes them. That becomes even more problematic when Syd can’t control Haller’s reactions and hospital staff are hurt and his only recourse is to escape. The switch between the two is only temporary and Haller wants Sydney back.

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Going to his sister Amy (Katie Aselton) for help it actually sets her up to be hurt by those who want Haller for themselves. Quickly enough Ptonomy Wallace (Jeremie Harris) and Kerry Loudermilk (Amber Midthunder) help Haller escape with the help of Melanie Bird (Jean Smart). He is taken to Summerland and discovers there are more people who have abilities. Bird explains that Haller isn’t ill at all and that they need to go into his past to understand where he is now. While in an MRI, he sees that the group called Division III has taken Amy and his anger does something that shocks everyone at Summerland. Wanting to save her, Amy tells him that he has to control his power first before he can help anyone.

Working with Ptonomy on memories of a time when he did drugs, Haller is still plagued by the figure called the World’s Angriest Boy in the World from a childhood book. Unable to control his powers again, Haller and Sydney end up at Division III where he sees someone called the Eye (Mackenzie Gray). Bird has to explain that his name is Walter who was one of the founders of Summerland. Everything gets so out of control that Haller has to be sedated enough so that Bird, Ptonomy and Sydney can get a better look inside his head but he is too strong for them.

When Haller doesn’t wake up, Bird has to find out what happened to him before he ended up in the hospital and the only person that might have a clue is his ex-girlfriend Philly. Ptonomy gets a chance to see inside Philly’s memory and learns that Haller attacked his previous therapist named Poole. Haller is on a journey of his own but Lenny comes to him to escape.

As Haller is dealing with problems in the astral plane, Cary believes that Haller’s brain has been infected by something he calls the gruesome Devil with Yellow Eyes. The creature isn’t at all done with Haller when it attacks Sydney but worst of all; the entire group at Summerland is now at Clockworks with Lenny as their caregiver!

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Now under her control, Lenny takes on each of them and their issues but it is Sydney that notices something is different which costs her. Lenny isn’t about to let any of them get the upper hand, especially when she knows things about Haller and has no problem demonstrating her control over his mind. Cary Loudermilk (Bill Irwin) thinks they’ve had it all wrong and that it is actually the powerful mutant Shadow King Amahl Farouk who is messing with Haller.

Haller believes that Farouk and his real father might have had issues that led to an altercation and that was the reason he was put up for adoption. Finding Haller as a kid, Farouk managed to place a device in his mind which is what has caused all the havoc. Trying to get back to Summerland, the group is intercepted by Division III!

In the finale, Haller manages to break free of Division III but it should have been seen as all too easy. Clark (Hamish Linklater), his interrogator, wants to get in on the action and goes with the soldiers to Summerland. Haller believes that Clark is their hostage but what they don’t know is that Division III can see and hear everything happening. It’s a chance for some serious body exchanging to happen, Clark changes sides and Haller becomes doesn’t see something little coming his way.

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Stevens as Haller is truly doing some serious acting! This is a role that keeps the viewer guessing as to where Haller actually is in the grand scheme of things. What is trippy about this whole thing is that I like it! Stevens first caught my attention in the role of Matthew Crawley in the amazing series Downton Abbey followed by Sir Lancelot in NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM: SECRET OF THE TOMB and more recently the role of Charles Dickens in THE MAN WHO INVENTED CHRISTMAS. The role of Haller is so complex and original that LEGION is the perfect place for Stevens to just let loose and explore all the avenues.

Keller as Sydney is a girl with her own set of powers that is equally as frightening as Haller’s. He learns quickly that touching her can transform and change their situations. This also means that she is detached out of fear and can not allow her emotions to get any deeper for Haller. Smart as Bird is a woman who seemingly wants to help those with powers at Summerland. Jumping into the memories of the group has her unraveling the mysteries and Haller is proving to be her most difficult case.

Plaza as Lenny is just out and out creepy and I love it. You can never tell from one appearance to the next whether she is going to be on Haller’s side or just messing with his memories. Aselton as Amy thought Haller was just dealing with serious mental issues, imagine her surprise to discover that those mental issues were nothing like she was raised to believe.

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Harris and Midthunder still have their roles to play knowing that there are mysteries about Haller that are going to take digging and it seems it is harder than they have ever explored before. Gray as the Eye is another character that creeped me out because I was never quite sure what he was up to or what is place was in it all. Linklater still has a part to play but will it be for the good of those in Summerland? We shall see, we shall definitely see.

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment brings award-winning global product and new entertainment to DVD, Bluray, and Digital HD. There amazing collection offers fans an opportunity to expand their own home libraries with the best films. To discover what other titles they have please visit www.fox.com.

The Bluray includes the Special Features of Fractured Reality: A Different Kind of Hero, Uncanny Romance, Production Design, Powers, Make-Up (Making The Devil with the Yellow Eyes), Visual Effects, Costume Design, Locations and Deleted Scenes. Also included in the 2-disc Set are Episodes Chapters One Through Eight.

LEGION has definitely been on the radar with nominations for awards and wins like TVLine’s Performer of the Week going to Aubrey Plaza, Best Sound Editing given by the Golden Trailer Awards, and tied for Runner Up for Best Action Series by the IGN’s Best of 2017 Awards and the People’s Choice for Best New Series.

If you want to watch the most interesting and twisted trip you’ll every take, then LEGION is exactly the show you want to watch. From twists and turns in the story line to singing and dancing trips, this series isn’t about to give you one little hint about the direction it plans to go.

I am going to be thrilled when Season Two begins but let’s be clear, I had to watch Season One of LEGION twice because there is so much to take in I wanted to be prepared for what is to come. This is definitely a series that needs to continue to think out of the box and go places no one expects the story to go and don’t ever put on the brakes!

In the end – there is no door to this rubber room!

 

MARSHALL

Marshall cover

 

Jeri Jacquin

In theatres this week from director Reginald Hudlin and Open Road Films is a case that would bring a name to life with MARSHALL.

Thurgood Marshall (Chadwick Boseman) is a graduate of Howard University and now a lawyer with the NAACP who takes cases to help those who need it the most. One such case takes him to Connecticut to defend Joseph Spell (Sterling K. Brown), an African American who is accused of raping Eleanor Strubing (Kate Hudson) – a white woman.

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Not a lawyer in the state, Marshall must work with Sam Friedman (Josh Gad), a Jewish attorney who isn’t happy to be a part of the case. Trying to make introductions and slowly slip away, Judge Foster (James Cromwell) isn’t about to let that happen.

Prosecutor Loren Willis (Dan Stevens) is satisfied when Judge Foster allows Marshall to stay but he isn’t allowed to cross-examine witnesses or basically do anything inside the court room. Marshall is furious and has no choice but to make sure that Friedman stays with him on the case.

As each witness comes to the stand, it becomes clear that Spell might not have been honest about everything with Marshall. Now he must work with Friedman on how to present the case and not let anything get in the way of securing Spell’s freedom.

Neither of them could have known what they would discover and how it would end!

Boseman as Marshall gives the audience the angrier side of Thurgood Marshall. From the moment his character is up on the screen it is easy to see he isn’t going down without a fight – on anything. Trying to keep his cool, Boseman spends a lot time pursing his lips and squinting at the judge but once of the courtroom makes it clear he has a lot to say. Unfortunately the anger is aimed at Friedman who takes the lumps quietly.

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Gad as Friedman is a lawyer who just wants to take the simple town cases and enjoy his career. When Marshall comes to town, a sense of fear starts to take over as his family becomes a target for those upset with his new partner’s attitude. At one point he makes it clear that he and his family still have to live in the town once Marshall takes off for his next case elsewhere. Is does take time for Friedman/Gad finds the fighting lawyer in him!

Brown as Spell is a man in a situation that doesn’t have an easy way out. He sticks to his story and clearly has no animosity towards the woman who is accusing him. As the trial gets further and further along, it becomes clear that the truth might not be that easy to tell. Brown is coming off a high with the successful television series This is Us, of which I am a huge fan, and it’s nice to see him take on the bigger screen.

Hudson as Strubing is a very beautiful woman who is also in a situation that has no good ending. The questions are harsh and her story is uncomfortable at a time in the country when a jury is unforgiving of such a crime. Stevens as Willis takes great pleasure in making sure Marshall stays quiet and knows that his case is not only a strong one but can only have one outcome.

Cromwell as Judge Foster is not a man to be trifled with in the slightest. He makes it clear before a jury even sets food in his courtroom that Marshall is under a gag order. He watches every move Marshall makes and doesn’t allow for any wiggle room – period.

Other cast include Keesha Sharp as Buster Marshall, Roger Guenveur Smith as Walter White, Derrick Baskin as Ted Lancaster, Barret Doss as Bertha Lancaster, John Magaro as Irwin Freidman, Ahna O’Reilly as Mrs. Richmond, and Jussie Smollett as Langston Hughes.

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TUBS OF POPCORN: I give MARSHALL three tubs of popcorn out of five. I know, I’m going to get grief for this but here is my problem with the film. First, out of all the cases that Thurgood Marshall was a part of and made history with, this is the story the filmmakers chose to tell? Really? Not one other case stood out and made a greater impact worth telling on film? That was disappointing to me.

This is supposed to be a film about Thurgood Marshall yet I found the journey of Gad’s character of Friedman more compelling. Here is a Jewish lawyer who wanted to fly under the legal radar and completely happy doing so until he is pushed into situation where he excels! He comes out of a shell and lets Marshall know that he understands how it feels to be calls derogatory names and have stereotypes thrown at him. I am all for that storyline but isn’t this a movie about Marshall?

I wish I understood Marshall’s life more in the film instead of the bits and pieces thrown that flash by so fast. The relationship with his wife is another story that just seemed odd, thrown in quick and ripped away and on to the next scene. The quick flashes of relationships with Langston Hughes or the Lancaster family and I’m still not sure if they had a purpose and I just missing it.

I read a lot about Thurgood Marshall over the years and his career is remarkable leading to becoming the first African American Supreme Court Justice. His cases are stellar and his career a brilliant one and I’d rather read a good book about his life than see a film that misses the mark. That’s just my opinion folks!

In the end – his name means justice!

Beauty and the Beast Dances and Sings onto Bluray

Beauty and the Beast cover

 

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Bluray/DVD and Digital HD from director Bill Condon and Disney is the return of a tale as old as time with BEAUTY AND THE BEAST.

Belle (Emma Watson) is a young girl living in a small village where everyone knows everyone. So much so that Belle is known as an unusual girl who would read than find a husband. Living with her father Maurice (Kevin Kline), he is also seen as unusual.

Also in the town is Gaston (Luke Evans), a tad self centered man who sees Belle as his prize and wants to marry her. Along with side kick LeFou (Josh Gad), it is a constant struggle to understand why she is not falling at his feet!

beauty 4

During a trip to the neighboring town, Maurice unexpectedly loses his way and ends up in a tattered castle. He quickly discovers that the inhabitants are a little more magical and terrifying. A Beast (Dan Stevens) roars down and puts Maurice in a tower cell.

When their horse returns to Belle, she immediately knows her father is in trouble and rides off to find him. Finding her father in a cell and meeting the Beast, Belle offers a trade to stay in exchange for releasing her father.

Maurice returns to the town and tries to convince everyone that Belle is being held prisoner by a Beast. In the meantime Belle is getting to know her surroundings and the magic that holds the castle captive. Taking care of her is the candlestick Lumiere (Ewan McGregor), the elegant clock Cogsworth (Ian McKellen), the motherly teapot Mrs. Potts (Emma Thompson) and her teacup son Chip (Nathan Mack), the chiffarobe Madame Garderobe (Audra McDonald) and the ivory keys of Maestro Cadenza (Stanley Tucci).

Getting to know the Beast, Belle begins to see a different side of the creature. This thrills the residence of the castle since there is a curse with a glass encased rose and when the last petal falls they all will become unchangeable forever.

beauty 3

The Beast begins to feel so much more than he could have imagined and when Belle needs to be with her father, his heart gives in. But that isn’t all changing as Gaston convinces the town that the Beast must be destroyed. The two sides collide but one thing is certain, nothing will ever be the same.

It begins with heart!

Watson is charming as Belle and she certainly has made her way out of another iconic character. She twirls and sings her way though and looks to be enjoying her performance. Stevens voicing the Beast is gruff and unmoving at first but, of course, finds his heart and is changed.

Evans as Gaston is very funny and manages to capture the arrogance and narcissism of the marriage minded self-absorbed hunter. Gad as LeFou is clever and also funny.  Kline as Maurice gets a chance to portray Belle’s father in a less absent minded way but still well done.

McGregor as Lumiere is charming, but then again he is supposed to be. McKellen as Cogsworth has that voice that clearly defines who he is. Thompson as Mrs. Potts is sweet and caring along with the adorable Mack as Chip. McDonald as Madame Garderobe needs lessons in fashion and Tucci as Cadenza plays the ivories beautifully.

Beauty 5

Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment began distributing under its own label in 1980 and continues to bring quality programming to kids and kids at heart. Home of the most beloved animated features including SNOW WHITE, PINOCCHIO and SLEEPING BEAUTY to name a few is what keeps families coming back for more. To see what is currently available to add to your own family library please visit. www.movies.disney.com for their At Home titles!

The film is obviously beautiful and live-action fans will have a good time singing along whenever they like to song they already know and one or two new ditties. The costuming is stunning and the cgi is clever. The cast is fun and that is all that will matter to families ready to have a real home movie night.

The Bluray includes so many Bonus Extras including Enchantable Table Read – You’re invited to join the cast for the movie’s elaborately staged table read, complete with singing and dancing to live music, set pieces and more, A Beauty of a Tale – Explore the process of transforming a beloved animated film into a new live-action classic, and The Women Behind Beauty and the Beast – Emma Watson introduces several of the many talented women in all aspects of production who helped bring this enchanted tale to life.

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That isn’t all! Also included From Song to Screen: Making the Musical Sequences – Discover what goes into creating some Beauty and the Beast’s best-known moments, Making a Moment with Celine Dion, Beauty and the Beast Music Video & Making the Music Video, Extended Song: Days in the Sun – Learn more about Beast’s childhood in an alternate version of this beautiful song, and finally Deleted Scenes, Song Selection and so much more!

This BEAUTY AND THE BEAST pack includes a Bluray, DVD and Digital HD which means with the code you can take the gang where ever you are going and instantly stream and download all 129 minutes of fun.

In the end – be our guest!

THE TICKET Brings Seeing to a Whole Other Level

the ticket cover

 

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to theatres and VOD this Friday from writer/director Ido Fluk and Shout! Factory Films is a story about seeing what’s important with THE TICKET.

James (Dan Stevens) is blind and living with wife Sam (Malin Akerman), and son Jonah (Skylar Gaertner) they have a nice life together. He works for a company as a telemarketer that gives people cash for their homes. Working with him is buddy Bob (Oliver Platt) and together they have a friendship based on their lack of site.

One morning as James is waking up, he become aware that he is seeing light. Immediately they see the doctor and discover that his sight has returned. It is an amazing happening as the couple are thrilled.

Dan Stevens in THE TICKET. Photgrapher: Zack Galler

James takes time to enjoy having his sight back and all too quickly things begin to change. His employer notices that James production is way up and rewards him accordingly. James also notices Jessica (Kerry Bishe) who flirts openly with him.

As he spends more and more time away from home, Sam begins to see a change in her husband. Even their son Jonah can not help but see that James has become someone they don’t recognize.

Taking everything too quickly has its consequences as his marriage, fatherhood and friendships all flip like a light switch and leave James in a different kind of darkness.

Stevens as James perfected the role of blind-to-site and dealing with the trappings of both worlds. It is difficult to know how anyone would behave in the same situation which is the point, this characters tests us all and Stevens gives us plenty of pause.

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Akerman as Sam is a woman who truly loves her husband. Living a life of caretaking for him is a labor of love and James forgets that easily. I loved watching the turmoil Akerman portrays and I give her kudos for being stronger than a lot of women. Now I stand an applaud when she gives James a choice and sticks to it!

Gaertner as Jonah is a young man who is at that age where nothing escapes his attention – even a changing father. Bishe as Jessica is a character I wasn’t about to warm up to and again that’s perhaps there is a lesson in that as well.

Platt as Bob is such a good friend and even when James is being a douche bag Bob is still a good friend. But, as with all friendships, there comes a point at which the choices we make affect everything and everyone – Bob is no exception.

SHOUT! Factory has grown into a tremendous multi-platform media company. Releasing new animated features such as the exquisite Long Way North, and the epic fantasy Beauty And The Beast. Also their own original horror film, Fender Bender gives fans a good scare. For more of what SHOUT Factor has to offer please visit www.shoutfactory.com.

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THE TICKET has several layers to the story telling where are so in depth here. From a man who is living a good, even if simple life, until a change he never thought would happen wasn’t just a change of his eye sight. Watching James change is actually quite sad because it begs the question – what does it take to know a good thing?

Scenes between Stevens and Platt are absolutely amazing but their final scene together is one that just broke my heart. It is the final scene that will leave the audience holding their breath waiting for an answer that just might not come.

Using the back drop of a serious economy and the ‘we buy houses’ signs, Fluk says, “I live in Brooklyn, and would often see these flyers everywhere. There were houses being foreclosed, and some people were profiting from it.” It makes for an even deeper look at how people treat one another in the worst of times.

Stevens says of THE TICKET, “It’s a film that asks some very, very big questions. It’s the kind of film that, as you leave the movie theatre, you just want to talk about for hours”. Well said!

In the end – life can be both seen and felt!

Disney’s BEAUTY AND THE BEAST Returns as a Live Action Telling

MV5BMTUwNjUxMTM4NV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwODExMDQzMTI@._V1_UX182_CR0,0,182,268_AL_

 

Jeri Jacquin

This Friday in theatres from director Bill Condon and Disney is the return of a tale as old as time with BEAUTY AND THE BEAST.

Belle (Emma Watson) is a young girl living in a small village where everyone knows everyone. So much so that Belle is known as an unusual girl who would read than find a husband. Living with her father Maurice (Kevin Kline), he is also seen as unusual.

beauty 3

Also in the town is Gaston (Luke Evans), a tad self centered man who sees Belle as his prize and wants to marry her. Along with side kick LeFou (Josh Gad), it is a constant struggle to understand why she is not falling at his feet!

During a trip to the neighboring town, Maurice unexpectedly loses his way and ends up in a tattered castle. He quickly discovers that the inhabitants are a little more magical and terrifying. A Beast (Dan Stevens) roars down and puts Maurice in a tower cell.

When their horse returns to Belle, she immediately knows her father is in trouble and rides off to find him. Finding her father in a cell and meeting the Beast, Belle offers a trade to stay in exchange for releasing her father.

Maurice returns to the town and tries to convince everyone that Belle is being held prisoner by a Beast. In the meantime Belle is getting to know her surroundings and the magic that holds the castle captive. Taking care of her is the candlestick Lumiere (Ewan McGregor), the elegant clock Cogsworth (Ian McKellen), the motherly teapot Mrs. Potts (Emma Thompson) and her teacup son Chip (Nathan Mack), the chiffarobe Madame Garderobe (Audra McDonald) and the ivory keys of Maestro Cadenza (Stanley Tucci).

beauty 1

Getting to know the Beast, Belle begins to see a different side of the creature. This thrills the residence of the castle since there is a curse with a glass encased rose and when the last petal falls they all will become unchangeable forever.

The Beast begins to feel so much more than he could have imagined and when Belle needs to be with her father, his heart gives in. But that isn’t all changing as Gaston convinces the town that the Beast must be destroyed. The two sides collide but one thing is certain, nothing will ever be the same.

It begins with heart!

Watson is charming as Belle and she certainly has made her way out of another iconic character. She twirls and sings her way though and looks to be enjoying her performance. Stevens voicing the Beast is gruff and unmoving at first but, of course, finds his heart and is changed.

beauty 4

Evans as Gaston is very funny and manages to capture the arrogance and narcissism of the marriage minded self-absorbed hunter. Gad as LeFou is clever and also funny.  Kline as Maurice gets a chance to portray Belle’s father in a less absent minded way but still well done.

McGregor as Lumiere is charming, but then again he is supposed to be. McKellen as Cogsworth has that voice that clearly defines who he is. Thompson as Mrs. Potts is sweet and caring along with the adorable Mack as Chip. McDonald as Madame Garderobe needs lessons in fashion and Tucci as Cadenza plays the ivories beautifully.

The original in 1991 with Robbie Benson voicing Beast and Paige O’Hara voicing Belle continues to be a brilliant and colorful animated film that will be first in my heart. I am not a fan of changing my opinion on that anytime soon.

I prefer the 1991 animated version and it’s because of the memories the animated film brings back. I have seen my children and now grandchildren embrace it lovingly and iconically still watch it on Bluray to this day. There is a liveliness, silliness and fun in animated films that can not be captured in live-action.

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The film is obviously beautiful and live-action fans will have a good time singing along to song they already know and one or two new ditties. The costuming is stunning (except for the ending scene where everyone changes and the makeup is pretty disturbing) and the cgi is clever. The cast is fun and that is all that will matter to those sitting in the theatre seats.

In the end – be our guest!

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