1998 is right in the middle of an era in cinema that I have great affection for. The success of former video store employee Quentin Tarantino had been hugely influential and motivated a general expanded interest in independent film and in the value of both movie trivia and the expertise of your local hole-in-the-wall movie rental clerk. Many of the bigger studios had scrambled to put together projects and promote filmmakers who would help to bolster their street credibility and make them seem in tune with the times. While at moments this resulted in some movies that only had the markers associated with the sort of stuff they thought we wanted to see, but none of the genuine connection with the material that had made it interesting to begin with, I’d say the overall result was positive. Creative and idiosyncratic efforts were more likely to get the green light, and I consider that to be a good thing. At the same time, we were still getting a lot of very mainstream movies with pretty varied results, which served to remind us both of the value of earlier studio approaches and of the corporate malaise that independent films were in part a reaction against. It was a fine time to be a movie fan.
Today’s pairing features the two biggest animated films of the year, with the computer generated insects of A Bug’s Life and the mostly hand-drawn Chinese action musical Mulan.
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Kevthewriter recalls the animated insects of 1998.
Today’s match focuses on two high-concept comedies that have’t held up as well as audiences might have expected them to. Twins was a massive hit thirty years ago. More than The Terminator, Twins was the movie that established Arnold Schwarzenegger as an A-list movie star. But as big as it was back in the day, the comedy hasn’t held up especially well. When was the last time you even thought of it? Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, on the other hand, is still pretty well liked I think. But it probably isn’t as highly regarded as we all thought it would be in the late 80’s when it was being hailed as an instant classic.
Kevthewriter thinks people should talk about Zootopia more than they do.
Thanks to my brother’s family who are Disney Vacation Club members, i got the chance to spend a couple of nights at the Polynesian resort at Walt Disney World this past Labor Day weekend. This video is mostly what it says it is: a tour of the very nice DVC room we stayed in in the Pago Pago building. But if you take a look you’ll also catch a few glimpses of other parts of the resort, including our dinner at ‘Ohana on Saturday night. This really is a true vacation spot all on its own.
If you see me hunched over my phone frantically swiping my finger every which way, odds are good I am playing Disney Emoji Blitz. The free-to-play game was released last summer on both Android and Apple phones. Emoji Blitz is a lot like the other puzzle-based games with the additional selling point of unlocking cute Disney-themed emojis you can text to friends and family. But even if you have never wanted to express yourself via Disney characters, Emoji Blitz is a lot of fun for casual gamers.
Disney Magic Kingdoms is a free-to-play mobile game that was released in early 2016. The game allows players to build their own Disney theme park. Back when it was new, Daffy Stardust checked it out and compared it to a similar game he was playing, The Simpsons: Tapped Out. Daffy thought the game might be colorful enough to entertain small children, but found it’s limitations frustrating. I have actually stuck with the game for over a year now and I thought I would update readers regarding how Magic Kingdoms has changed since its release.
Kevthewriter wonders why Pixar keeps making Cars movies when no one he knows seems to like them very much.
Disney has been remaking all of their animated classics into live action, all of which have gotten mixed responses to say the least. It’s gotten to the point where many people on the internet have reacted to another announcement that Disney is going to remake another animated movie into live action with dread. If there is one remake that’s even less anticipated than others, though, it’s probably the new Lion King, mostly because of the fact that they’ve called it a live action remake. And that is stupid.
All the way from sunny Florida, Daffystardust filed this report on a popular Disney World treat.
The big movie release of this past weekend, if I can believe the hype I’ve seen and the strong crowds I experienced, was the live action adaptation of the Disney classic Beauty and the Beast. The 1991 animated musical production is one of the most beloved in the Disney canon, winning Oscars for Best Original Score and Best Original Song, and becoming the first animated film to be nominated for Best Picture. The affection and nostalgia still attached to the animated film have made this year’s adaptation perhaps the most hotly anticipated live action Disney film of the past decade.
Join Lebeau and me as we discuss our own histories with the story and our reactions to the new film. There are mild spoilers here, but if you’ve seen the previous Disney film, the general story shouldn’t be much of a surprise.
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If you have a commute or other life circumstance which plants you in one place for a while, podcasts are one good way to deal with these times. As a Disney fan who is constantly preparing for my next trip to Walt Disney World, podcasts on the topic are a big focus for me. Thankfully there are plenty of options out there for someone like me. Which are my favorites? I thought you’d never ask.
Recently, I wondered whether or not Frozen was the only recent animated movie that Disney mattered. It was just kind of a random thought I had really, as I was thinking one day, “y’know, ever since Disney’s bought Marvel and Star Wars and everything, it seems like the only animated movie they focus on is Frozen. I wonder if there’s any correlation to that?” and just sort of made a theory that they were mainly focusing on Frozen because their animated movies were no longer their only big franchise. The original article sparked a conversation about movie merchandise that I would like to follow up on.