weaponsofmassdelight

Mutual Assured Delight

Archive for the tag “entertainment”

Under the Covers

 

Under the vast canvas of a slighty worn black comforter, the characteristic light from a chipped silver gameboy advance sp illuminated the darkness of my prepubesent room. The screen was blank though, an odd thing for any gameboy held in the slender hands of a boy to be. No, this gameboy had more pressing duties at end. Yes, this console was the lantern that lit the way towards knowledge. Under those covers late at night I read books about magical beings an places. Hudden from a candid world( and a mother’s after bed time rage) I would dive into a sea of wonder.

More than a decade (and many strong prescription glasses) later, I find myself still diving into the paper dreams that I found at a younger age. I found myself recently at the other side of the country and found myself(lets face facts, I was drawn to it by some mystical force) at a local library. At that library, a magician was doing an event based on the national summer reading programs theme for the summer, dreams. This magian was not only entertaining, but insightful. He pointed out that there are two types of dreaming. Dreaming when you are asleep, as in dreams, and dreaming while awake. Magic and getting into an amazing book is the latter. During both experiences, belief and reality are locked on suspended animations. Dangerous dragons and magical movements happen right before the eye and in the head. We are dreaming while wide awake.
I know that I talk about this alot, but I cannot stress this enough. Hug a librarian. They are the gate keepers and the  key holders and the sandmen to dreams and fantasies beyond your wildest dream. I have been involved some way or another with the library system for as long as I remember, and it has benifited my a thousan folds over.  The library is truly a place full of dreams and dreamers.

Dreams are todays answers to tomorrows questions- Edgar Gayce

-Grant (I dream of a world where a good live action Last airbender movie is made)

Avatar the Last Airbender: when East meets West

I wrote this a long time ago, so be gentle.

Ionic versus Pentatonic.   Nuclear family versus extended. Chopstick versus fork. For as long as the cradles of civilization have been around, there has been a difference between Eastern Culture and Western culture that has gone beyond the physical separation by the Ural and Caucasus Mountains.  Whether it be by the main differences in philosophy and religion or the way to hand a business card, it obvious that there is a major divide between how things functions between the cultures. However, every so often lightning strikes and that great red line dissipate to create something truly awe-inspiring.   In the year 2004 at Comic-con, the world saw lightning struck once again. Avatar: The Last Air bender was ready to shine.

Like many great animated television shows, ATLA(Avatar The Last Air bender) began in Burbank California. The two men who came up with the main idea were Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko in 2001. It took them only two weeks to come up with the idea and pitch it. By February of 2005 it was an overnight hit. Since that fateful day there has been three seasons, a few hour long specials, and a successful second season to grace the avatar universe. The Avatar universe tells the story of Avatars, one person every lifetime who has the ability to use all four of the elements in comparison to only one, to bring harmony to the land. ATLA tells the story of how Aang, an avatar trapped in a block of ice for 100 years, and his companions defeat the fire nation after it had waged an all-out war for domination. Avatar: The Legend of Korra, is about the Avatar after Aang named Korra who must live in a world where although people with elemental abilities live in harmony,  a resistance of normal people is formed to stop bending.

So why is Avatar special? Well, that is multi-part answer. One would be the fact that Avatar is a serious drama.  Even though there is humor involved, most notably involving the character Sokka and his trusty boomerang, it would be a lie to say that ALTA does not tug on the metaphorical heartstrings. The creators masterfully play with music, storyline, and character developments that make mature characters that are relatable despite the odd universe in which they live in. I found myself emphasizing with Anng’s attempt to get Katara to notice him and crying with him when the frustration of being born into responsibility became too much to handle.  What we were given was a show not just for the demographic of 8-11. We were given an epic story that blended western and eastern ideas to give a masterpiece. It is understood early on that eastern philosophy, art, and martial arts heavily influenced the show. The amazing thing was, it was not based off of tired old stereotypes that would often show up in western shows including Eastern elements.  ATLA was a celebration of Eastern culture.

Recently, Avatar: The Legend of Korra was renewed for a second season. A greater diffusion between western and eastern history/ideas is created, with jazz and automobiles painted next to Chinese folk music and bamboo trees.   The future for this show is unknown to everybody except the small group of dedicated artists in Burbank. What is known is that Avatar will continue to meld the hearts of mind of Eastern and Western fans for years to come.

God I love the track Team.  (M. Knight Free since  ’05)

-Grant

Polite Poetry six

              

                            Ellie

The tiny pattering of feet fill her head

growing in intensity as the dream shrivels away

She lays outside letting the raindrops batter her porcelain frame

What happened to the balloon that would never allow her string to be tied down

the helium of life is gone and her string

oh that string that was tethered around my arm and lifted me up

it is wrapped around the leg of that chair.

the exhilarating cries anticipated has all but been replaced

replaced with the sobbing. the rain.

Tell me, what can this hopeless balloon vendor do

do without your laugh that was more precious than any amount of helium gas.

Tell me

How can I help you float above the falls?

I do not own any of the characters from Pixar’s Up. All rights go to Pixar, my heroes.  -Grant

The Dark Knight Rising into theatres

All right Ladies and oh so gentle men, the day that we(Though I can only speak for myself) have been waiting for  is almost upon us. That is correct,  The Dark Knight Rises flies into theatres in just three days.  M Night, I mean The Dark Knight Rises, is the third movie in Christopher Nolan’s action packed trilogy that follows the creation and possibly destruction of Batman. This last movie is going to be a special treat for fans of the  comic book. Nolan is using the pivotal storyline of when Bane breaks the bat. Every so often in a comic book, a storyline comes along that brings all the right people and ideas together to create a special moment in a comic. This moment is like a bottle of Dasani on a deserted island or that Pokeflute that moves away the tired old storylines and hashed out idea. Batman vs. Bane is that kind of storyline and Nolan is sticking pretty close to it, unlike that dumbed down Bane in the infamous Batman and Robin. This movies seems as if it will live up to the hype.

There is much mystery surrounding the movie, and nobody knows exactly what Nolan has in store for the end. All that is known is that the franchise is going out with a bang. I am so excited, I am not even going to rant about Anne Hathaway( and trust me, if you could see the conversations me and my friends have about her as Catwomen, you would pay me to shut up).  Regardless of how good the movie is or is not, it can be safely said that  this trilogy that explored what Batman is, with all his flaws and idisyncrosies, shall be missed.

See you at the Theatre    Grant

 

I’m Batman!

So Cute

Pixar Power: A lesson in Nostalgia

Ever since I was five years, I understand the power of nostalgia. My mother and grandmother both collected animated movies for me and my sister to watch. My mother would always purchase a Disney movie as soon as it came out on VHS, adding countless movies to our collection that seemed to grow exponentially. Some of my favorite and best kept memories are of my family sitting in the living room, the small area alight with excitement, captivated by the mysterious wonder that movies bring. When done right, and Disney did it right, you could feel an overwhelming amount of emotions for a time that is not your own. I feared the fires in Paris that my burned my brethren and I missed the days of yore when Gods walked among men and champions were made, not just born. During Disney’s renaissance (This was a period of time circa. 1985-2000 where Disney returned to making kick ass movies including but not limited to The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, Mulan, and of course Lion King) Disney mastered the art of perpetual nostalgia with the unique ability to take any time period or situation and add modern day allusions and twists to the story line. A great example of this is in Hercules when they called Thebes the Big Olive or when the sizzling satyr Philoctetes name was shortened to Phil. This connection of two time periods draws the audience in with something recognizable and at the same time allow us to accept the unbelievable or unknown as fact. Very few other film companies can accomplish the feat. Do you really see yourself sitting down with your kids or grandkids in ten years and watching Madagascar three? I didn’t think so.

 Enter Pixar.

The Disney Renaissance is dead. The Age of Pixar has begun. Long live the king. The mantle of majestic nostalgia in animated films has been passed on. Before I continue, I must warn you. I love Pixar even more than I love Disney. I love the music of Giacchino, the Newman’s, and the newest member to the club Patrick Doyle (Don’t worry. I have an especially long essay to write about nostalgia, the music of Pixar, and why Pixar Is Jazz). I love the quirky characters like Dory the……what was I talking about again, Doug the dutiful dog, and the three silent yet wild princes DunBroch. I love everything Pixar. The way the company is run shines in the movies. Pixar is the new king of nostalgia. They made an exact witches brew filled with comedy, drama, and transcending life lessons that can rival Disney in its tenacity. I recently saw the movie Brave, and it is of little wonder why Brave became the 13th Pixar movie to premiere at number one. Sure, there are certain things that I can happily say I have never experienced (No spoilers for you. See the movie!), but I can fully appreciate the struggle between a young adult and their parent. The feisty Merida’s spats with her strict yet loving mother brought forth powerful memories of slammed doors and raised voices that I thought were long gone. The reason why Pixar’s nostalgia is different yet similar to Disney’s can be found in the type of love that they exemplify. While Disney focused in the love between two strangers who eventually found love, Pixar focused on the types. Maternal/paternal love, self-love, and love between friends. All of these loves are valid on their own way. Each company made these loves their own.

Ever since I was five understood the power that nostalgia has. In the blink of an eye a blank canvas can be filled with the most beautiful and most wretched colors that have ever been seen. The paintbrushes needed to create these perfect pieces of art can be found now in the minds of every single person who works at Pixar. These people who can make you feel like robots can fall in love, houses can fly, and toys can form lifelong friendships hold the keys to the lock that is your heart. In ten years I can cannot wait to sit my child(or children, who knows!) upon my lap and allow Pixar to unlock their hearts and show them the power of Nostalgia.

    -Grant

P.S. I will never refer to Pixar as Disney Pixar. As far as I am concerned,  Pixar is and always has been its own identity that shall never be truly assimilated. Disney=distribution.

The jock is dead. Long Live the Geek!

At my grandma’s house and we got thr record player to work. Jamming out to the original cast of Sesame Street!

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