The Shape of Water

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The Shape of Water is a film by acclaimed director Gillermo Del Toro. And it’s a dazzling, odd, unique, spell-binding fairytale.

It tells the story of a mute woman Elisa (Sally Hawkins) and her encounter with a mysterious creature. From wikipedia: Set in Baltimore in 1962, the plot follows a mute custodian at a high-security government laboratory who falls in love with a captured amphibian creature.

The filmmaking is certainly some of the best of the year. Sally Hawkins, Richard Jenkins, Michael Shannon, Octavia Spencer, and Michael Stuhlbarg all give outstanding performances.

It really is an incredible, lovely, violent, romantic, and wonderous film.

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“What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve?”

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“What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve?” is arguably one of the best, well-known songs for New Year’s Eve and end of year celebrations. Perhaps, trailing second to the old standard, “Auld Lang Syne”.

This lovely song of love, longing, and romance stirs up just the right kinds of emotions as a year comes to a close.

I’ve gathered up a few of the best recorded versions of the song for everyone to enjoy.

Happy New Year!

 

Dia De Los Muertos

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Dia De Los Muertos is a Mexican holiday celebrated throughout the country, also know as Day of the Dead. It’s a beautiful and colorful event that goes from October 31- November 2.

From wikipedia: Day of the Dead (SpanishDía de Muertos) is a Mexicanholiday celebrated throughout Mexico, in particular the Central and South regions, and by people of Mexican ancestry living in other places, especially the United States. It is acknowledged internationally in many other cultures. The multi-day holiday focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died, and help support their spiritual journey.

There are many aspects of the holiday that have become recognized parts of the 3 day experience:

Cemetery visit
Alfeñiques (sugar candies)
Literary calaveras
Day of the Dead bread
Altars
Sawdust and grain carpets
Mexican marigold
Papel picado (paper craft)

At the core of the celebration is honoring the dead. Remembering them every year at this time. The holiday is growing in popularity around the world due to this message of rememberance.

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Coco

 

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It’s a little unusual for me to post about something I haven’t seen yet, but making an exception for COCO, the new Disney Pixar film.

Based on Dia De Los Muertas, Coco folows the story of Miguel, an aspiring musician and his journey to the Land of the Dead. The real family history is revealed through this musical journey.

Additionally, the Mexican tradition of Dia De Los Muertos is celebrated in the film. Family who have passed on are only able to return to the Land of the Living if someone there remembers them. This is why efforts are made to remember and honor the dead so that they can return during the holiday. It is also supposed to help with their spiritual journey.

It’s supposed to be wonderful. What an incredible concept Dia De Los Muertas is in celebrating and honoring loved ones who have past. And now there is a film which celebrates this same idea.

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Below is the entertainment offering at Disney California Adventure called, A Musical Celebration of Coco.

New York Times

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The New York Times.

Had the fortunate opportunity in my life to live in NYC. While there the New York Times is arguably the only way true new yorkers get their news.

What I’m excited about is The New York Times really is a global leader in news. As much as we have been hearing attacks towards the news media, they really are the pillar of freedom and the First Amendment to the Constitution.

And worthy of our support.

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Atomic Blonde

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Atmoic Blonde is a film based on a graphic novel, The Coldest City. It stars Charlize Theron and is directed by David Leitch.

While this film may not be for everyone, the violence is brutal and the plot can be tricky to follow, it still is a clever and interesting ride. Mostly due to the work of Charlize Theron.

If you enjoyed her performance in Mad Max:Fury Road, consider this a more lipstic version of her kick-ass persona. It’s like watching Jason Bourne with a mix of Deborah Harry and Madonna.

The 80s setting provides a nostalgic trip down memory lane. The music chosen pulls from some of the best of the era. “Father Figure”, “Voices Carry”, “99 Red Luft Balloons”.

The director is a stunt man, and therefore, the stunts are incredible. Unrelenting and so tightly choreographed. How they do it is a mystery.

If you are looking for a Berlin wall, platinum hair, neon glow, action-spy thriller, this is the movie for you.

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