Category Archives: cinema

BAD AMC, BAD

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Sorry for my absence, it has been a busy couple of weeks. So, let me give you a brief run down on what I’ve been up to.

Movies; time traveling sci-fy with Bruce Willis in Loopers. How would you react if you were faced with the task of executing your future self? Creative and entertaining. I don’t know why this film got negative reviews. I can only assume that those who didn’t like it, don’t enjoy science-fiction. Probably out of theaters at this point, look for the DVD release for home viewing.

Skyfall with Daniel Craig as bad boy, 007. A salute to 50 years of Bond. I thought this was an awesome flick despite the extremely uncomfortable distraction of a freezing theater. I mean, really frickin’ cold. I had a sweater on and 20 minutes into the movie I had to slip into my coat and was still freezing. And, no need to worry about the baby seated next to me, once the movie started his own mother wouldn’t have been able to hear him cry due to the excessively loud volume that seems to be the norm for this set of theaters. Seriously, I’ve been to rock concerts that were quieter. AMC 16 in Burbank, California, SHAME ON YOU for such poor customer consideration. Despite the convenience of your location, I’ve decided to seek another venue to re-visit this movie and view future flicks. One that is not an AMC Theater.

Make it a Misfits marathon. Which is what I did this last weekend thanks to the Hulu Plus streaming through my son’s Playstation. The British comedy, horror, drama, sci-fy didn’t impress me with Season 1 until I viewed the last few episodes which baited me into watching Season 2. Then I was hooked. This series is for mature audiences only and always ends up with at least one gruesome death per episode. Some of the characters are a little difficult to understand and there are quite often cheeky references that are lost on me. But, despite that, I find most of the story lines engaging. Misfits is dark, twisted, clever and sometimes surprisingly shocking for this puritanical American. Just started watching Season 3. Can’t wait to see what’s in-store for my favorite characters.

Food; The SmokeHouse Restaurant located across the street from Warner Brothers Studios in Burbank. 4420 W. Lakeside Drive. This old school steak house still fits the bill when I’m craving a nice piece of red meat, just don’t order the twice baked potatoes… terrible.  Here’s a little history on this establishment taken directly from its web page.

Established in 1946, The SmokeHouse was built at the end of WWII and is one of the few L.A. restaurants still in existence from that era.

The original restaurant was located at the corner of Pass and Riverside avenue and seated 46 people and was enjoyed by local luminaries like Bob Hope and Bing Crosby. Jim Stockton was the promoter and front man for the restaurant with Jack Monroe as the head cook. The Smokehouse was so successful and packed with customers that they soon began looking for a new building. In 1949 the Smokehouse moved to its current location. Built beside the world famous Warner Brothers lot in Burbank, California, the SmokeHouse is a favorite hang out for actors, producers, and anyone else in the industry. In the 60’s it was common to come in for lunch and find the place filled with costumed cowboy and indian extras having lunch.

Let me not forget Thanksgiving!  What kind of a holiday gathering be it without someone going off like Mt. Vesuvius, hum?

Once again it was a veritable feast of comfort foods with the family gather for a late dinner at sister, Cindy’s house. My turkey looked a “work-of-art” and everything was moving along perfectly until I burned the buttered almonds for my Green Bean Almondine. Then it spiraled down from there as exhaustion and an aggravated shoulder injury had me teetering on my last nerve. It only took a few of the men folk to question a simple request, to set me off. I exploded, uncontrollably, in what can only be described as a “South Park” moment, the top of my head blowing-off  like an erupting volcano, spewing forth sarcastic remarks and obscenities.

 

Thank goodness, sister Cindy saved the day by having us immediately perform “The Thanksgiving Feast Song”  http://youtu.be/2BZcSDY70IA

I have provided a link to the video for your amusement. You may have to copy and paste. Enjoy!

 

My Webber BBQ roasted/smoked turkey

Whew!!!! What a ride!

Until next week, buy  “Made in USA”

~ K.L. Parry, author of The Pirate’s Daughter and a King’s Ransom.

 

Dust Up! Indie-Film Fans

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Hey Folks!

Today I want to put in a plug for the Independent Film by Ward Roberts…, Dust Up.

Hang me for missing out on tickets to the World Premier Screening on Sept.28th. (What a Dork I am!  Hum…, maybe I could make San Diego?) But I was happy to see that it will be available on Hulu Plus and Netflix in October.

Yeah! for Ward, the cast and crew that has put in a gizzillion hours to bring us this kick-ass, horror-comedy-grindhouse-western.

Starring Amber Benson of Buffy-the-Vampire fame and a cast of colorful characters.

“A one-eyed vigilante with a dark past has vowed to change his ways, trading his machine gun for a yoga mat. But when he encounters a beautiful young mother (Benson) in deep trouble with a cannibalistic drug lord and his evil goons, he realizes that justice must be served. Teamed up with his smooth-talking Native American hipster sidekick, our hero rides into the badass brawl of the century.” – Stolen from Dust Up Film.com

“Want a movie that is hilarious, original, shocking, heart-felt and action-packed with crazy colorful characters, mind-blowing music, and too many memorable moments to count?

Maybe? Hmm…how about if we include an homage to the Princess Leia/gold bikini scene from Return of the Jedi featuring the one & only Amber Benson?” – Snatched from Indiegogo

Go to Dust Up Film.com for more information. Lots of cool stuff there! Become a Dust-er on Indiegogo and become a supporter of Indi-films!

DUST UP on the BIG SCREEN!

  • September 28th – LOS ANGELES, CA – DUST UP WORLD PREMIERE – SOLD OUT!
  • October 3rd, 2012 – DALLAS, TX – Tickets!
  • October 6th, 2012 – JOSHUA TREE – Tickets!
  • October 11th, 2012 – AUSTIN, TX – Tickets!
  • October 11th, 2012 – Chicago, IL – Tickets!
  • October 17th, 2012 – MINNEAPOLIS, MN – Twin Cities Film Festival. Tickets.
  • October 17th, 2012 – SAN FRANCISCO, CA – Vortex Room! Learn more here!
  • October 18th, 2012 – SAN DIEGO, CA – Tickets!
  • October 18th, 2012 – INDIANAPOLIS, IN – Tickets!
  • October 26 – Nov 1, 2012 – BROOKLYN, NY – Tickets!
  • November 1st, 2012 – TAMPA, FL – Tickets!
  • COMING SOON…screenings in SAN DIEGO, LAS VEGAS, PALM SPRINGS, BOSTON & MORE!
  • REQUEST A SCREENING in YOUR neck of the woods!
    See ya next week!~ K.L. Parry ~ Author of The Pirate’s Daughter and a King’s Ransom

 

It’s Not What I Recalled!

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Sorry, pressed for time. But I did make time to go see the latest re-make of one of my favorite Schwargneer movies, Total Recall.

 

 

If you’ve never seen the original, you’ll probably like this one. If you have, you’ll be disappointed as I was when I discovered how they’ve changed up the plot. I would have loved to have seen an updated version of this sci-fi, action adventure which is what I expected to see after watching the previews.

Don’t be looking for any mutants or alien technology cause this version doesn’t have any of these other than the three breasted woman. Plastic surgery, not mutant. Though they’ve retained the character names and some aspects of the original, the settings have changed and so too some of the main aspects of the plot.

 

Don’t be fooled. This movie has very little in common with the original and quite frankly, I feel cheated.

I just got this one message to send out to all those script writers, directors and producers. Don’t change the plot when you already have something that works! Please! I hate it when you do that! Which is why I have stopped paying money to go see re-makes in the theater. I reserve those for Netflix rentals if at all.

 

 

Really, I can’t even say whether you should go see this or not. It’s just not what I was expecting.

 

K.L. Parry ~ Author of The Pirate’s Daughter and a King’s Ransom

 

Avengers: Uber Rockin’ Awesomeness!

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There has been some controversial talk lately and I’m going to set the record straight, once and for all.

Yes, I do go to the store in my jammies. But, only occasionally and it’s usually very, very late at night.

Ha, ha!

Well, I do hope everyone did something nice for someone’s mother this week. And, though I worked on Mother’s Day my youngest son did not escape his yearly duty. That is, to reassure me that I am the best mother ever. So it was, that on Monday, the day after Mother’s Day, I was treated to a 3D viewing of “The Avengers”.

Whooo hoooooo! What a ride. 

Hey! I have finally reached an age of maturity that allows me not to care about what people might think. I took a small pillow with me. Yup. It was bright red and I carried it all the way from the car, through the parking structure, into the outdoor mall and right up to the ticket window. OMGoodness, why did it take me so long?! Such a simple thing that would have allowed me years of theater seated comfort. And you know what? I’m gonna do it again.

The story picks up where previous Marvel theme movies left off starting with Loki, (Tom Hiddleston), Thor’s wayward foster brother, stealing an ancient relic of great power , the Tesseract, that was recovered from the Nazi’s by Captain America in the movie by the same name. All hell breaks loose and Nick Fury, (Samuel L. Jackson), of S.H.I.E.L.D., an international peace keeping agency, sends his agents out to enlist the help of the world’s super heros. We find Captain America, (Chris Evans), trying to adjust to life in the 21st Century, Iron Man, (Robert Downey Jr), along with Pepper, (Gwyneth Paltrow), at his side unveiling a new clean and sustainable power source and the Hulk/Bruce Banner, (Mark Ruffalo), rendering medical aid in a third world country. Black Widow, (Scarlett Johansson) is the one sent to bring in Bruce Banner who I am not-surprisingly, unfamiliar with because I didn’t see the latest take on the Hulk which is where she and Hawkeye, (Jeremy Renner), were introduced. I’m not sure who Hawkeye is either, other than he can shoot an arrow blind with uncanny accuracy.  And, might I say that Scarlett totally rocks her super spy character.  Watch out boys, this girl is a scene stealer. Thor, (Chris Hemsworth), enters the story as the concerned brother who wants Loki to  come home but he soon discovers that his brother won’t relent and joins the Avengers in their cause to stop Loki in his quest to rule the planet Earth.

I want to ask this. Who’s idea was this super-sized combo pack?

 The Avengers is awesome, and in 3D it is uber rockin’ awesomness! It blends characters and stories into one cohesive super pix filled with action, phenomenal CG works and great writing or was that just Downey ad-libbing? I don’t care! I loved it!  I want to see it again. 

Do tune in to next week’s post at “Following The Dream”. You’ll find a link to the right on this page, (providing that you’re not reading it from your phone or e-mail). I have pretty cool news to deliver on that front. In the meantime, go see The Avengers. 3D if you can!

~ K.L. Parry ~ Author of “The Pirate’s Daughter and a King’s Ransom

Monsterpalozza

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Last Friday, the 13th as it happened to be, I was perusing facebook when I came across a post for a monster convention. Monsterpalozza. I was immediately intrigued particularily because it was being held at a hotel a mile down the road from me.

Creature from the Monster Museum

“But what?” you say. “You didn’t think I liked horror.”

You’re right! I don’t like horror movies with blood and gore and little dolls that chase after me with small knives. I especially don’t watch anything that has possessed people climbing the walls, spinning their heads or pulling others into their televisions. But I can admire the art in the crafting of these creatures from conception to form.

Unfortunately for me and you, my readers, I was unable to draft a companion into accompanying me. Most of my friends require a signed invitation, several pleading phone calls and a two week notice…, lol. Thus, my solo attendance meant that I had no one to suggest that I might want to make notes on the pictures I was taking. See how I conviently place the blame on a nonexistant person to avoid accepting responsibility?  So, my deepest apologies go out to those of the craft for any mislabeled photos. Of which their undoubtly will be many if not most.

I’d also like to add that I am NOT a professional photographer. So no comments about my lousy camera work. Ha!

 

Crown Brush - vendor for theatrical cosmetics and applicators

Vendor, special effect

Artist, Allen Williams - Ijustdraw.blogspot.com

Killer Clown

Some Steam Punk from Jesse Gee Arts - Vendors Booth

Didn't I see this in the movie "Hugo" ?

Vendor's Booth

Vendor's Booth

Vendor's Booth

Avatar - Special Effects

Vendor's Booth

Vendor's Booth, sculpture. This one still creeps me out!

An American Werwolf in London by master sculptor, Mike Hill.

Scary Clown Booth

Vendor's Booth

Another museum creature and a Terminator hand, I think?

Yet, another creature in the museum. It was dark, sorry!

Master Sculptor Mike Hill recreates life-size Jack Pierce, a legendary genius in horror makeup and the artist for Boris Karloff's makeup as the mummy.

Close up of wax sculpture of Boris Karloff as the Mummy,by Mike Hill.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keep it real if you can’t make it with wax.

~ K. L. Parry ~ Author of The Pirate’s Daughter and a King’s Ransom

HUGO VS. SUPER 8

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Hi there and welcome back to my Blog. Well, I had a lot of things on my “to do” list today including working on my latest manuscript. However, all that went by the wayside when my roommate, who also happens to be my youngest son, was given the day off from work. Since my bedroom/office is also the livingroom and the location of our only TV you can be certain that anything I wanted to do that required solitude was not going to get done. So instead, I spent the day watching movies.

First I was off to the AMC Burbank Town Center 8 in the Burbank Mall to see “Hugo”, directed by Martin Scorsese. Let me say this for the theater, OUCH! My back, my ass and my legs were killing me! This theater is in much need of a remodel. The old style, immobile seating was unbelievably uncomfortable. Hey, Scorsese! Cut loose with a few bucks and adopt a theater. These people need some new seats so the rest of us can better enjoy your movies!

OK, now back to my review.

Movie Poster

This is a story about Hugo, a boy, who having already lost his Mother at some earlier time, now looses his father. Suddenly the boy’s life goes from one of family security to that of an orphan, abandoned by his only living relative, a drunk and slovenly uncle, to live out his existence in the clock tower of a railway station. Left to maintain the clocks so that his shiftless uncle can do as he pleases, Hugo is forced to fend for himself, stealing what he needs to survive from the station’s vendors.

Set in Paris, France sometime near the late 1800’s (I think), this film was visual eye candy for me. I also thought the characters delightful and I was particularly fond of the glimpses of those that worked at the station. But I must say that the story itself lagged for me at the beginning. I kept asking myself “Where is it going?” However, I was a bit, very small bit, intrigued and willing to wait it out. Then somewhere in the middle of the film it flip-flops and the story changes focus. Suddenly it’s Ben Kingsley’s character, George Melies, the toy shop owner, who becomes the focus of the story. The action picks up, his story unfolds then the movie rushes to an ends with a predictable dilemma for Hugo that is quickly resolved. I was left feeling that poor young Hugo was abandoned once again, but this time by the story line.

Johnny Depth is one of the film’s Producers so for this reason it may make it into someone’s personal library. But not mine.

Home from the theater, I made myself dinner and then my son presented me with a couple of rentals, one being “Super 8”, directed by JJ Abrams. This was a film that I had wanted to see at the theater but never did and I don’t remember why?….

Image from Movie Trailer

Super 8 is a story about a middle-grade boy and his friends who are determined to complete the filming of their Zombie movie. After sneaking away from their homes late one night, they arrive at a deserted railway station to work on their film when a horrific train accident occurs right in front of them. They then discover that the accident was no accident after all and are sworn to secrecy until frightening and unexplainable things begin to happen in their town.

Ye, ha! This film had my undivided attention from beginning to end and that spectacular beginning was the most awesome car flying, exploding containers and fiery debris train wreak I’ve ever seen. There were also some wonderful subplots dealing with, yet another, parental loss and a boy falling for a girl.

I really do so wish I had seen this one on the big screen. It is a great middle grade and YA flick that’s fun for the big kids too. I don’t want to say too much more  other than that I loved it and intend on purchasing my own copy to nestle beside my Goonies DVD.

Until next week, keep it real and buy USA!

K.L. Parry ~ Author of “The Pirate’s Daughter And A King’s Ransom”

Red Carpet, VIP Experience!

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Happy New Year and welcome back to my blog. I do hope everyone had a safe and enjoyable holiday. Mine was a bit of a roller coaster ride of emotions with the joy from time spent in the company of family, a grueling work week and the passing of my beloved Auntie. But it has re affirmed in me the importance of making the best of every day. To never let slip the opportunity to do something kind for someone and to relish the moments shared with those I love.

So, a couple of weeks ago I made mention of some of my plans for family fun during the Holidays. The first was Universal Studios and I was not disappointed. They had the whole place decked out in full Christmas regalia complete with the biggest Christmas Tree I’d ever seen. The theme was taken from the Dr Seuss book, “How The Grinch Stole Christmas

I may be 50 something, but inside I’m still the kid that rides the roller coaster and gets her picture taken with Grinch and Max.

Although they do have a few thrill rides, like Revenge of The Mummy and The Simpson’s Ride,  Universal Studios emphasis is on stage shows and visual entertainment.  I did ride the Mummy, with my eyes closed and laughed all the way through the Simpson Ride while my oldest son found it made him a little queazy. We were all impressed by Terminator 2 in 3D and the King Kong 360 – 3D (that was part of the Studio Back Lot Tour). That being said, I was disappointed that the back lot was so poorly lit for the evening tours. We could not see a lot of the out door sets. One would think, with the expense of a park ticket, that they could afford to light the whole place. Despite that, I will stamp my recommendation on the tour with this criteria; be sure you’ve got at least a couple of hours of daylight left before you board the tram. All in all, Universal Studios was great fun and I would absolutely recommend it for pre-teens and up.

Our next adventure I almost want to keep to myself. Because, I don’t want to share! It was The Gold Class Cinema in Pasadena. This theater is one of a small chain of  6 theaters scattered around the States owned by iPic Theaters. Wow! Talk about a literal Red Carpet, VIP experience! Once you’ve checked in at the front desk, mirrored escalators transport you down into a low ceiling lounge where you are greeted by a well dressed and friendly staff. Although they don’t have any formal dinning space set up, the comfortable lounge seating is quite conducive to dinning and conversation. Their menu offers a variety of eats from “Lamb Pops” at $19.00 to Street Tacos and Sweet Potato Fries. The dishes are appetizer portions but I found that the 3 lamp pops, served with a mound of mashed potatoes, was enough to satisfy me and quite delicious. They also have a full service bar, which I did not take advantage but my son’s did, ( I didn’t want to feel groggy during my movie experience.) The lounge also offers several specialty drinks unique to that establishment.

But we are here to watch a movie and what a glee full surprise it was to enter into a 40 seat theater equipped with fully reclining chairs, blankets and pillows upon request along with a wait staff to provide you with beverages or any food item off their menue. That’s right Sally, you can enjoy a cocktail or two from the comfort of your recliner, wow! You can go on line and actually choose your seats ahead of time! But, I must say,  all the seats in this intimate setting are good. No obstructed views, no crying children, why you don’t even notice the waiter delivering drinks to your neighbor.

I and my family were so impressed by this place that despite the $24.00 ticket price, (after I’d signed up for the free membership), plan on making it a regular part of our theater going experience. Beside, it almost cost that much at any regular theater when you throw in a bag of popcorn, which, I might add, is complementary at Gold Class Cinema. AMC, Phooey! I give Gold Class Cinema the highest of recommendations!

Gold Class Cinemas

One Colorado Pasadena42 Miller Alley

Pasadena, CA 91103

Phone: 626-639-2260

Oh, I almost forgot to tell you how the movie was! Great! We saw Sherlock Holms Game of Shadows. Love, love, love Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law in these roles. Spectacular scenes and plenty of action. Witty dialogue and an engaging story line all rolled into a big hit in my book. Thanks guys for bringing us another awesome flick.

See ya next week. Until then, Buy MADE IN USA !

~ K. L. Parry  ~