Tagged: movies

Re-watched La La Land today

- by Alyson Shane

I've always had a soft spot in my heart for musicals.

I like this one, especially, because of the ending.

(and if you haven't seen it by now then I don't feel bad for spoiling it - it came out in 2016, after all.)

Don't get me wrong: I'm a sucker for a good romantic story, and it's always nice when the characters end up together. There's really something to be said for a nice happy ending.

But that's not always how life goes, is it?

Most love stories don't have happy endings. We often need to go through a few sad endings in order to get to our big happy ending - and that's assuming that you find one at all. Some people don't.

Or they have it, and they lose it.

They let it slip through their fingers like sand.

Which is what La La Land is about. Two people who have a chance at a happy ending together, but they lose it because they stop putting in the effort. They let arguments, disappointments, and their own ambitions get in the way of their relationship with one another.

They stop seeing each other, and they drift apart.

Do you know what I mean by seeing? Like, the person who used to make everything you did together interesting and fun has just become a person who also lives in your house/condo/apartment with you and sleeps on the other side of the bed. They go from being that person to just a person.

Which is terrifying, I know.

But it happens a lot. It's how tons of real-life romances end. Most of us have probably experienced it (if you haven't, you're lucky, because it's awful) but most of us have because - let's face it - it can take a few tries to figure out how a relationship is supposed to work.

But usually we don't make movies out of those failed tries, which is why I love La La Land. It's a story about heartbreak and failure wrapped up in bubblegum colours, tap dance, and jazz.

It's also why I love 500 Days of Summer, but we can talk about that one another day. It's on my list.

The epilogue scene - the one where Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone imagine what their lives would have been like together - makes my cry like the intro of Up! does. Every damn time.

I can't help it.

It makes me think about how fragile our relationships are. How quickly they can fall apart if we let them; if we stop seeing each other and making time in our lives for our partner.

(I'm glad John held my hand in the theatre during this part, btw)

He held my hand throughout most of it, actually, which was nice because I get emotional during musicals.

Especially ones where Ryan Gosling plays such mean piano.

Tags: Life Movies


Hip Hop Sunday: Wordburglar - Croque Monsieur

- by Alyson Shane

Slept in till almost noon and then didn't leave the bed until way after, which only happened because John tempted me with eggs in baskets and coffee and Jimmy Dean sausages from the FoodFare on Maryland.

Who can say no to some Jimmies?

Had a few people over on Friday night to watch the new Trailer Park Boy's Christmas special which was less that underwhelming. I didn't realize that it was a mash-up of some show footage and a live stage performance.

Suffice to say that they should just stick to the tv show. 

While the acting isn't too awful, it relies way too much on well-known catchphrases and jokes and not enough on new material, so this tired chick was falling asleep towards the end. 

However, it was nice to catch up with a few peeps we hadn't seen in a while, and a nice way to start a super relaxing weekend. 

Last night after making the most epic grilled cheeses we popped my Return to OZ cherry which was terrifying to say the least.

I watched a lot of effed-up movies in my childhood but how is this not supposed to traumatize anyone?!

Have a wonderful (not creepy as f) Hip Hop Sunday!


yr girl Shaner


White Oleander

- by admin

I first read the book when I was seventeen.

I found it in Bison Books which is in a different, not as good, location now.

The old location had an upstairs mezzanine level with this neat little alcove area where, as it turns out, I would eventually discover some of the most important books in my life.

It was air-conditioned and I was a teenager with a lot of time to kill and at the time my mum and I weren't getting along, and she would make me leave the house at 8am regardless of whether or not I had somewhere to go.

So I went to the bookstore.

That summer I reread the book at least a dozen times. I think I identified with the girl in the novel who didn't know who she was just yet.

Astrid was lost, and to a large extent that summer I felt lost.

I drifted around from place to place during the day between the two jobs that I worked, trying to avoid the two toxic relationships in my life: my boyfriend at the time, and my mother.

Things changed, of course.

That relationship ended, and I somehow managed to mend my broken relationship with my mother, and different books came to live in the large purses that I used to carry around before everyone got smartphones.

Watching the film now feels familiar.

It reminds me of that girl that I used to be, and that summer

and how we're always, still, a little bit lost.



- by admin

To beat the cold on the weekend Ty and I made thin crust pizzas and curled up under blankets and watched her which is the latest film from Spike Jonze that has audiences swooning.

I wish I could disagree (no I don't) but I don't.

I loved it.

The sets with stark backgrounds and pastel shades and high-waisted pants and hairstyles that hinted that this wasn't quite in the present.

The contrast between the too-happy workplace and Theodore's crumbling personal life.

Joaquin Phoenix's portrayal of Theodore, a man who seems to be fading out of his own life due to his inability to face his own mistakes.

ScarJo's voice, of course, perfect as the voice of the OS, Samantha.

As well as how compartmentalized the movie was. The film focused on Theodore's experience with the OS and only revealed small snippets of the effect that a sentient operating system was having on the larger society.

I liked it that way. The movie focusing on Theodore's life was complex enough and I feel it would have detracted from the overall feel and message if the plot had tried to tackle a broader range of issues and subjects in such a small time frame.

Because ultimately her is a movie about a lonely man who does what a lot of lonely people do: they fall for the wrong person. They try to fill that gap in their heart with something that they shouldn't.

In Theodore's case it was a charming, cute operating system, and the way the Jonze frames their developing relationship makes it seem so completely plausible. Watching the film I couldn't help but think

"Yeah, that makes sense".

It's to utterly, terribly human that it hurts, and it serves as a reminder of the complexity of our emotions.

How we can't help who (or what) we love, and our relationships are entirely our own interpretation.

But the biggest lesson that a viewer can take away from this heartbreaking, beautifully sad story is this:

Small phones win out in the end.


Which is better: Drive the movie or Drive the soundtrack?

- by admin

We're watching the movie right now so I'll get back to you on the soundtrack part but so far it's pretty kickass.

I can tell I've been playing a lot of GTA 5 recently because at the beginning of the movie when Ryan Gosling was driving around listening to the police radio all I kept thinking was

it's a shame he couldn't see their radars right now.

I've been playing so much of it because we've been on Christmas vacation which basically has resulted with a lot of drinking with my friends, sleeping in, going to the gym, reading a few books I've been meaning to get around to, and playing a lot of video games because it's fucking cold outside.

Tomorrow is NYE as you all know and I should probably be reflecting on the past year and I probably will at some point

all the cool shit I did
the university I graduated from
the jobs I got, lost, and have now
the people in my life

but not right now because Ryan Gosling is being too dreamy.

Watching Flight

- by admin

with the cats and blankets and tea and advil because I can't sleep, haven't slept, since the night before last because even though decongestants help me breathe they don't stop the sting behind my eyes

and nothing is worse than trying to sleep with sore eyes.

I don't recommend it.

Anyway since I can't sleep and I'm not going to watch any of Dr. Who without Tyrone I figured I'd write a little message to you lovely people

who still come around n read this nonsense all the time even though I don't update as often as I should

to say that, so far, Flight has been a terrific movie.

I figured it'd be good since there was a bunch of full-frontal lady nudity in the very first scene and also Denzel is in it and I love him

but it's been really intense so far and I only got to the part where the airplane just crashed.

Which was terrifying and awful and stressful to watch even though I know that flying is actually the safest way to travel and shit like that rarely goes down

but it's terrifying nonetheless and makes me realize that pilots actually have balls of steel and are a million more times hardcore than I could ever be.

Not astronaut hardcore, but pretty effing close.

I bet you want to know why I'm watching 'Chocolat'

- by admin

The answer is that it's partially because it's on Netflix.

But mostly the answer is because back when I was fresh out of high school I knew a girl named Rae-Annon and it was her favourite movie if I recall correctly. If it wasn't, and I'm wrong, it was damn near her favourite because she talked about it a lot.

Even though she and I went to elementary school together, or maybe it was middle school I'm not sure anymore I knew who she was because she was the weird goth chick that my yuppie friends and I would look at from down the hall with big saucer-like eyes and wonder what could possess someone to dress that way.

(We, however, were dressed in as little as the school would let us get away with wearing without having to wear a garbage bag for a shirt and we were barely on our periods so who were the fucked-up ones, really?)

Anyway after high school we reconnected by chance because we both worked at the same McDonalds in Winnipeg Square where I wiled away a year of the year and a half between when I graduated and when I moved to Ontario.

She was way more self-assured and I didn't realize it at the time but I really looked up to her even though she had slightly hippie-er tendencies than me like not always shaving her armpits and talking about shakras and stuff.

She went to the East Coast for a month and brought me back a small bag of sea glass which I still have and treasure even though we haven't talked in years.

We used to hang out in her parent's basement which was basically her little pad and watch movies like East of Eden and Breakfast at Tiffany's and drink wine from a box and talk about the boys in our lives. She showed me how to paint watercolours and bought me a martini glass set for my 18th birthday and we had stupid made-up words like 'citag' that we used with each other because young girls are dumb that way.

She knew me back when I was still a pretty fucked-up mess and sometimes I feel bad about that.

We've completely lost touch over the years after a nasty falling out that was, largely and unsurprisingly, my fault. But when I think about those years I try not to think about the end, but rather the rest of it which was sweet and amazing and good.

So when I saw Chocolat on Netflix the other day I put in my queue and even though it's not a very good movie (which I didn't expect it to be) it's nice to remember her and my friendship that feels like a lifetime ago.

So hi Rae-Annon, if you're reading this.

Everything is perfect

- by admin

Stayed in last night and watched The Tree of Life.

Which is
makes you feel terribly
compared to the overwhelming space scenes
(I almost cried during a scene featuring the Horse Head Nebula to the tune of lacrimosa)
and smothered, claustrophobic
watching the characters live out their lives.

Terrence Mallick is genius
and Brad Pitt absolutely
Though the movie lost it's shit a bit in the last ten minutes -sorry to say.

watch it anyway.

Then go watch Upstream Color
(if you haven't already)
because Shane Carruth is brilliant
and his film is like a Mallick movie
but makes slightly more sense.

We were up late, after coffee and a nice long walk
playing vide games and being nerds together
which isn't abnormal
but still nice.

This morning I woke up to rain.

The quiet sound of it outside
& the smell of it, too.
So we made baked eggs and kept few lights on

and here we are.

Happy weekend.

I still wanna see The Great Gatsby

- by admin

Even though it's not doing super hot in theaters and it's only got a 51% rating on rotten tomatoes.

I can't help it, I think it's because Leonardo DiCaprio is in it.

Scratch that. I know it's Leonardo DiCaprio is in it.

A few weeks ago the cat was bugging me at like 4am and I couldn't get back to sleep. So since it was Saturday I decided to go hang on the couch and see if I was going to fall back to sleep eventually, or what, and wound up watching Titanic, which I haven't seen in a few yrs.

It was actually better than my youthful self remembers. Though that might be because I could pause it and go pee halfway through without having to push past an aisle full of peeps just trying to enjoy the movie, dammit.


Leo was great in it. I always forget what an amazing actor he is until I'm watching one of his movies. Then I'm all

"holy shit, he's handsome and talented"

which is why I want to see Gatsby, even though from what I know there isn't any nudity à la Kate Winslet's fabulous boobs like in Titanic.

But I can deal. Plus Carey Mulligan is pretty effin cute.

The thing that puzzles me still is this:

Why did people expect the movie to be so great?

It's a mediocre movie based on a mediocre book

except the movie has a zebra in a fountain.


Things that appalled me about "The Queen of Versailles"

- by admin

All of it.

But I still recommend that you watch it in order to experience the monumental amount of materialism, self-indulgence and wastefulness portrayed in the film, along with the complete lack of class, good taste and modesty, as well as the warped vision of the 'American Dream' that it displays.

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