Posted tagged ‘Movies’

Downton Abbey

September 25, 2019

Downton AbbeyLast night we went to see the movie “Downton Abbey“. Tuesday is a good night to go to the movies around here. Regal Cinema has $5 tickets for everyone on Tuesday night. The ticket taker wanted to see inside Paula’s purse looking for contraband. They didn’t see the bulge in my pocket that had a bottle of spring water.

Still not very crowded even at those prices. So this is the continuing story of the Crawley family, wealthy owners of a large estate in the English countryside.

So we have been waiting to see this for a long time once we heard it was being developed. If you followed the series that was broadcast on PBS from 2010-2015, you will love the movie. If you didn’t follow the series you might still enjoy but maybe not.

All the characters on the TV series made it into the movie. I read somewhere that producer Julian Fellowes struggled to get all of cast together for the shoot because of many conflicting schedules of cast mates.

So the story line is that the King and Queen are coming for a visit to Downton. First everyone had to get the joint scrubbed clean, then the royal maids, cooks and butlers arrive to take over the operation for the visit. The regular Downton crew are none to happy to pushed aside for their day in the glory of the visit. Much trickery is planned to take back the staff’s operation of Downton.

Downgon Abbey mansion

So the movie ends after all the royals go home. The movie closes with a long shot of the mansion in the darkening skies. The Crawleys and their staff live happy ever after. So I was wondering, how did they light the castle (remember this is circa 1927) with out any flood lights showing?

So, one of my problems that I had was understanding all of the dialog. I have hearing problems and I wear hearing aids. The hearing aids didn’t seem to help, perhaps even made it worse. The dialog often sounded muddled. British accents didn’t help any in that regard. I have a hearing test scheduled in October

I hear that the Downton Abbey mansion has become quite a tourist draw for Brits and Americans. They apparently do tours. If you were a fan of the PBS series, go see the movie. You’ll enjoy it.

After the movie, we had dinner at a Mexican restaurant in San Pedro. Taxco still hasn’t managed to get their liquor license back after they moved a few months ago. No matter, the food was excellent.

 

Good Boys

August 22, 2019

Good BoysSo last night was date night again. It’s a lot easier to do date night now that we have Mary living in a home in Long Beach. So we try to do date night on either Tuesday or Wednesday because one of our local theaters has $5 nights. $5 or everyone on Tuesday and $5 for seniors on Wednesday. I paid more for my popcorn than the tickets.

So last night we saw “Good Boys“. It is the story of three boys that were 12 years of age (Tweens). The three boys had been invited to a party where there would be boys AND girls in attendance. They were concerned that they didn’t know how to kiss a girl.

So the three lads skip school and go about trying to find out how the job gets done. So they they try to eaves drop on two teen age girl that live next door. They can’t quite see over the wooden fence, so they borrow their Dad’s drone to spy on the girls. However, the girls capture the drone. The boys find themselves deeper and deeper into trouble as they try to recapture the drone.

The film starred Jacob Tremblay, Keith L. Williams and Brady Noon. They did a great job. I expect that we will be seeing more of these lads.

So the movie is rated R for language (a lot of F words), sexual innuendo and alcohol consumed by tweens. It was fun to see the faces on the boys when they tasted beer for the first time. Perhaps you might remember what beer tasted like when you were as young as these boys. My mother or the good nuns would wash my mouth out with soap if they ever heard me using one of those F words.

I had to stretch my imagination to believe that 12 year old boys would be doing this sort of stuff. When I was in 7th grade, I certainly wouldn’t be doing these things.

We had hoped to see “Once upon a Time in …Hollywood” but timing wasn’t right. We’ll try to see that film in the next week or so. That film runs about 2 hours and 45 minutes. That meant that once we were done watching the film many of the restaurants we might want to go to would be closed. So “Good Boys” runs about an hour and a half.

TaxcoWe had dinner at Taxco Mexican restaurant in San Pedro. Taxco recently moved from their location at the corner of Western and Capitol to the Albertson’s plaza down the street on Western. Food was good, but they don’t have their new liquor license yet, so no margaritas for us. Maybe next time for the margaritas.

Lion King (2019)

July 24, 2019

lion kingTuesday again was date night. We went to see the new Lion King. Prices at the Terraces Cinema is $5 on Tuesday. That’s hard to pass up. Usually, the films that we see on Tuesdays are not that well attended. Yesterday (5pm show) was different from normal Tuesday’s. It was at about 50-60% capacity.

The theater was starting a new play about every hour. This week is early in its run. Film length is about 2 hours.

My first comment is “WOW!!!”. How’d they do that. All of the images of the animals looked really, really real. You can’t tell that this is CGI other than the fact that the animals are talking.

So one of the big things about this film was that Beyonce appears in it. All I can say about that is “Meh!”. I am not a huge Beyonce fan.

The story is more or less the same as the original. Young Simba is tricked by his evil Uncle Scar into believing that he (Simba) caused his father’s death. Simba grows up and understands his responsibilities as an adult. Simba returns to the pride, and takes his proper place.

So the film was rated PG for violence. Probably not too good for the little ones. Surprisingly enough, none of the animals ever bleed. Some of them die but they don’t bleed while that was happening. This is the magic of PG. If there was blood, it certainly would be PG13. We will need to be thinking about what to see next Tuesday.

I downloaded the sound track from iTunes. It’s kind of hard to figure out which of the albums is from the 2019 version. There’s a Broadway version and a 90’s version. It’s kind of hard to tell them apart.

We had a good time. Long line at the refreshment stand. Just as well, I don’t need any popcorn. We went out to “Marie Calender’s” for a light dinner. Very tasty

Toy Story 4

June 22, 2019

This weekend my wife and I are caring for our two grand-children while Mom and Dad take a much needed R&R trip to Hawaii. So yesterday, we decided to take the kids to see Toy Story 4, which had just opened. Click here for the trailer.

We saw the movie at a Regal cinema in Ranch Palos Verdes that has wide, comfy seats that recline. Plenty of leg room. One of may favorite cinemas.

I was wondering to myself how did the writers and producers manage to come up with yet another “Toy Story” episode. I am also am wondering if they will manage to come up with a “Toy Story 5”.

So Tom Hanks, Tim Allen and Annie Potts are once again astounding in their voicing of their characters.

So Tom Hanks again plays Woody, Tim Allen plays Buzz Light-Year and Annie Potts plays Bo Peep. So the theme is similar but different. Woody and Buzz are once again facing being left behind by children growing up and moving away. And they get right into action to save the situation.

The adults in the room liked it and the kids did too. Definitely worth going to see it.

Booksmart

May 31, 2019

On Tuesday, Paula and I went to see the movie “Booksmart” based on several positive reviews. Also, we went out on Tuesday because the tickets were quite cheap ($5 per person for seniors). Can’t beat that with a stick. I know that Tuesdays are not a big night for going to the movies. But there were only three people (us included) that were in that theater.

The story is about two very smart high school seniors who decided that they had spent way too much time studying and that it was high time that they started to celebrate with the rest of their class.

So they manage to make their way to a party going on at someone’s fancy house where no parents were in attendance. There was much drinking and carrying on. By carrying on, I mean sex. Everyone was taking their clothes off. Rated R,  don’t you know.  It wouldn’t take much to make it X rated. So what parent on this good earth lets their teen age offspring throw a huge party and provide all the booze and drugs anyone might need.

I just didn’t like the movie. I’d give it one star out of 10. I’d give it zero if I could. What reasonable adult lets their teen age offspring have parties. Kids who do this, could end up very much dead.

So the movie started at 5 pm and done by 7 pm. Gave us time to go out for dinner. We went to “Burger City Grill” in Lomita. Excellent burgers with a glass of IPA to wash it down. I think that we will be making it a thing  to do movies on Tuesday evening from now on.

Mary Poppins Returns

December 29, 2018

Friday night was date night again. We arranged to have Dawn over to take care of Mary. then off we went to the movies. We went to see “Mary Poppins Returns” at the Terraces Cinema. The film stars Emily Blunt and Lin-Manuel Miranda. The Terraces is about half the price of AMC theaters plus it’s a lot closer. Tickets last night were $6 a person (Senior Rate).

I am usually underwhelmed at movie remakes, but I was pleasantly surprised at the “new” Mary Poppins. Emily Blunt does a great job doing Mary Poppins. As in the past she arrives floating down from the sky under an umbrella.

Lin-Manuel Miranda plays Jack, the lamplighter. So, who knows what a lamplighter does for a living?

We ran into a couple of friends who came to see “Mary Poppins Returns”. In fact, there were only the four of us in the theater. Our friend Frank had never heard of Lin-Manuel Miranda. Who hasn’t heard of Hamilton. One of these days we will save up enough money to see “Hamilton” when it comes out this way again.

The sound track was completely revamped. Alas, there was no “supercalifrasticexpialidiocius”. Not to worry, there were plenty of tunes that get your toes tapping. I will probably download the sheet music to some of the tunes to play at our next lodge or OES meeting.

Okay, SPOILER ALERT.

If you haven’t seen the film and are planning on seeing it. Stop reading here.

One of the joys of the film was cameo appearances late in the film of Dick Van Dyke and Angela Lansbury. Folks of a certain age, might remember that Dick Van Dyke appeared in the original “Mary Poppins” back in 1964. I don’t quite get the appearance of Angela Lansbury. She didn’t appear in the original Poppins. So what’s the hook? Also, Julie Andrews did not appear in the sequel. Dick Van Dyke still has that twinkle in his eyes.

After the movie we got Chinese take out from the Lucky Star Chinese restaurant. I do love their Hot and Sour soup. All in all, it was a fun night.

Crazy Rich Asians

September 20, 2018

Crazy Rich AsiansWednesday night was date night again. This time Paula and I decided to go see “Crazy Rich Asians” still playing at the AMC in Torrance. It stars Constance Wu and Henry Golding. Been meaning to go see this movie but didn’t quite have the time or baby sitter availability.

The movie is based on the best-selling novel of the same name.

This is a story of a young Chinese woman, Rachel Wu (played by Constance Wu) who travels with her boy friend from New York City to Singapore to meet his family. So you get the impression from the get-go that his family is very rich

He is in Singapore to be best man at his best friend’s wedding. They travel first class all the way.

The story begins with a scene where Eleanor Young travels with her three children to the Calthorpe Hotel in London where she is told that she doesn’t have a reservation (for obvious racist reasons). She is turned out in the rain to call her husband who proceeds to buy the hotel. She returns triumphantly to have the manager clean up the mud on the floor.

It was a fun movie. There was lots of pomp and rich trappings displayed. Major friction between son and mother. Go see the IMDB page for the full plot synopsis.

It was nice to get out without Mary. We stopped for KFC chicken on the way home.