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Friday, April 29, 2016

Film Review: The Jungle Book

The Jungle Book, 2016, Directed by Jon Favreau, 106 min, Starring --Neel Sethi, Idris Elba, Ben Kingsley, Bill Murray, etc.
My Rating=4.5
Watched in theatre: 4/16/16

An orphan boy is raised in the Jungle with the help of a pack of wolves, a bear and a black panther.

Don't throw tomatoes at me, I haven't seen the Disney animated version (just clips here and there). Haven't read the book either. Can I just say I've been living under a rock? That said, this review is strictly about this film with no influence from book or previous animated version. Anyway, I enjoyed the ride. Quite an adventure that kept me on my toes. Shere Khan the tiger is a terror! So glad Baloo's comedic antics buffed him out ..Bill Murray is simply incredible. The young boy actor needs a little more acting pizzazz (for lack of a better term) but overall he got me rooting for him so he got the job done considering he was the only non-cgi character. Haha, when King Louie the orangutan started to sing I was taken aback. I didn't see this as a musical so I found that part funny. Now I have a hankering to read the book and see the animated version.

Join me at Letterboxd
 


THE BOOK:

Run with them. Or fear them--

Bagheera the Panther: A silken shadow of boldness and cunning.

Kaa the Python: A thirty foot battering ram driven by a cool, hungry mind.

Baloo the Bear: who keeps the lore and the Law, and teaches the Secret Words.

Rikki the Mongoose: The young protector who sings as he slays.

Akela and Raksha the Wolves: Demon warriors of the Free People.

Shere Khan the Tiger: The dreaded enemy of all.

And Mowgli the Man-cub: The orphan baby raised by the wolves, taught by Baloo, trained by Bagheera and Kaa. The sorcerer who knows the ways of the jungle and speaks the language of the wild...

DVD --1997


Book


Book


Thursday, April 28, 2016

Film Review: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof



Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, 1958, Directed by Richard Brooks, 108min, Romance, Drama, My Rating=5
Source: gifted to me

Just one pillow on her bed ... and just one desire in her heart!

Brick, an alcoholic ex-football player, drinks his days away and resists the affections of his wife, Maggie. His reunion with his father, Big Daddy, who is dying of cancer, jogs a host of memories and revelations for both father and son.

Wow! What a treat this was to see. Paul Newman and Elizabeth Taylor was freakin' sexy! Raunchy movies of today has nothing on this film. Nothing was revealed here but goodness, my TV screen was smoldering from the onscreen passion that was in between the lines. I just about died at the ending! Fudge, I think I came! ;) --But really I also was enthralled at the family dynamics. I had several giggles (Mae character) and happy with how it was wrapped up in the end. Oh, I'll have to tell my two youngest kids that their favorite Primary song, "Sunbeam" was sung here. --Last but certainly not least, I dub Paul Newman as my McSexy!

THE BOOK:
I haven't read it yet but now I want to!


Cat on a Hot Tin Roof first heated up Broadway in 1955 with its gothic American story of brothers vying for their dying father’s inheritance amid a whirlwind of sexuality, untethered in the person of Maggie the Cat. The play also daringly showcased the burden of sexuality repressed in the agony of her husband, Brick Pollitt. In spite of the public controversy Cat stirred up, it was awarded the Pulitzer Prize and the Drama Critics Circle Award for that year. Williams, as he so often did with his plays, rewrote Cat on a Hot Tin Roof for many years—the present version was originally produced at the American Shakespeare Festival in 1974 with all the changes that made Williams finally declare the text to be definitive, and was most recently produced on Broadway in the 2003–2004 season. This definitive edition also includes Williams&rsquoi; essay “Person-to-Person,” Williams’ notes on the various endings, and a short chronology of the author’s life. One of America’s greatest living playwrights, as well as a friend and colleague of Williams, Edward Albee has written a concise introduction to the play from a playwright’s perspective, examining the candor, sensuality, power, and impact of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof then and now.






Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Still Top 1% Goodreads Reviewer

On April 6, 2016 I received an email from Goodreads :)



Here's my read shelf:
Jinky's book recommendations, liked quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists (read shelf)



Monday, April 25, 2016

Review: Moon Over Manifest by Clare Vaderpool


Moon Over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool, YR, 2011, Ebook, 384p, My Rating=5
Source: borrowed from library through Overdrive
Newbery Award Winner 2011

Winner of the 2011 Newbery Award.
The movement of the train rocked me like a lullaby. I closed my eyes to the dusty countryside and imagined the sign I’d seen only in Gideon’s stories: Manifest—A Town with a rich past and a bright future.
Abilene Tucker feels abandoned. Her father has put her on a train, sending her off to live with an old friend for the summer while he works a railroad job. Armed only with a few possessions and her list of universals, Abilene jumps off the train in Manifest, Kansas, aiming to learn about the boy her father once was.
Having heard stories about Manifest, Abilene is disappointed to find that it’s just a dried-up, worn-out old town. But her disappointment quickly turns to excitement when she discovers a hidden cigar box full of mementos, including some old letters that mention a spy known as the Rattler. These mysterious letters send Abilene and her new friends, Lettie and Ruthanne, on an honest-to-goodness spy hunt, even though they are warned to “Leave Well Enough Alone.”
Abilene throws all caution aside when she heads down the mysterious Path to Perdition to pay a debt to the reclusive Miss Sadie, a diviner who only tells stories from the past. It seems that Manifest’s history is full of colorful and shadowy characters—and long-held secrets. The more Abilene hears, the more determined she is to learn just what role her father played in that history. And as Manifest’s secrets are laid bare one by one, Abilene begins to weave her own story into the fabric of the town.
Powerful in its simplicity and rich in historical detail, Clare Vanderpool’s debut is a gripping story of loss and redemption.

It took me over a week to read this because my kids had so much going on (practices, concerts, boy scouts, activity days, etc.) that I had very little time to read.  Usually late at night when everyone's asleep but by that time, I was so tired that I couldn't keep my eyes open.  Anyway, few pages here and there made for a very long read but I enjoyed the story so much that in reflection, it was like I was savoring it, so yay!  Indeed, this rich historical fiction kept my interest.  I like the small town history and its simple and fascinating culture.  The mysterious weaving of the plot certainly was what set this to high standards for me.  It had sassy characters and heart touching story of family ancestry, love, fellowship, and fitting in.  Speaking of characters.  I love the names of the characters in this novel, particularly, Jinx.  Can you guess why?  Hehehe, my close friends call me that.  Anyhow, well done, Ms Vanderpool! I'm one satisfied and happy bookworm.




Saturday, April 23, 2016

Reviews: Pete the Cat: Wheels on the Bus; The Princess and the Pea


Pete the Cat: The Wheels On the Bus by James Dean, YR, 2013, Board Book, 32p, My Rating=3
SourceL library

The kitties on the bus say,
"Come on, Pete!
Come on, Pete!"

The kitties on the bus say,
"Come on, Pete!
Hop on board!"

Pete the Cat can't wait to drive the school bus all the way to school! Everyone's favorite cat is groovier than ever in this way- cool adaptation of the classic kids' song "The Wheels on the Bus"!

My nursery kids enjoyed this rendition of Wheels on the Bus. There's something about Pete the Cat illustrations that catches their eyes ..bold, colorful, and fun.


The Princess and the Pea by Paul Galdone, Hans Christian Andersen, YR, 1979, Paperback, 32p, My Rating=3
Source: library


This adaptation of The Princess and the Pea, the classic fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen, is illustrated with the whimsical illustrations of Paul Galdone. It tells the tale of a prince who is searching for a real princess to marry, but has no luck searching his kingdom. One stormy evening a princess shows up at his castle and he thinks she may be what he has been searching for, but can she pass the test to prove she is a true princess?

Story is funny. Illustrations, just okay.



Friday, April 22, 2016

Reviews: Where Is Baby's Belly Button; My Little Teapot; This Little Piggy


Where Is Baby's Belly Button? by Karen Katz, YR, 2009, Anniversary Edition Board Book, 14p, My Rating=4
Source: library

Celebrate fifteen years of Where Is Baby’s Belly Button? with this oversize board book edition!

Where are Baby’s hands?
Under the bubbles!
Where are Baby’s eyes?
Under her hat!

This bestselling lift-the-flap board book is back in an oversize board edition just in time for its fifteenth anniversary! Karen Katz’s adorable babies play peek-a-boo in this delightful interactive book. The playful text and vibrant, patterned illustrations are sure to keep little ones mesmerized as they search for Baby’s hands, eyes, feet, and much more! This sturdy format and large, easy-to-lift flaps are perfect for parents and children to share.

Another fun one for the nursery kids. Wonderful board book with lift-the-flap that the kids enjoyed flipping. I look at it as a book version of peek-a-boo that young and old love to play.


My Little Teapot! by Annie Kubler, YR, 2007, Board Book, 10p, My Rating=4

Presents the lyrics to the nursery rhyme along with illustrations featuring children acting out the motions indicated by the song.

Had a kick singing and doing the moves with my nursery kids on this one! Keeping this ol' lady young :)


This Little Piggy by Annie Kubler, YR, 2007, Board Book, 10p, My Rating=4
Source: library

This award winning series has been specifically designed for babies. A great introduction to books through well-known nursery rhymes and interactive text. Singing songs and rhymes is the perfect way to bond with your baby and share quality time. It also aids language development by introducing them to the natural sounds and patterns of speech. Combining these with actions also stimulates the brain and helps muscle development.

Luckily my toes were ready (trimmed and painted nails) when I read this to my nursery kids. Such a fun rhythmic tale. Cute illustrations too.







Thursday, April 21, 2016

Film Review: East of Eden

A good friend of mine is a film enthusiast and got me to join Letterboxd (like Goodreads for motion pictures). If you like movies and want to log and review them then check it out.  If you join (or already a member) then find me here and let's follow each other because I only have one follower :(


East of Eden, 1955, Directed by Elia Kazan, DVD, 115mins, Stars: James Dean, Julie Harris, Raymond Massey, My Rating=5
Source: gifted to me

Of what a girl did . . . what a boy did ... of ecstasy and revenge!

Two brothers compete for their father's approval and a woman's love.

I absolutely love this film! James Dean and Julie Harris took my breath away. The story line pierced my soul. I'm speechless. This motion picture now ranks as my favorite movie these lovely eyes have seen. James Dean is now also my new McDreamy :)


THE BOOK:



Set in the rich farmland of California’s Salinas Valley, this sprawling and often brutal novel follows the intertwined destinies of two families—the Trasks and the Hamiltons—whose generations helplessly reenact the fall of Adam and Eve and the poisonous rivalry of Cain and Abel. Here Steinbeck created some of his most memorable characters and explored his most enduring themes: the mystery of identity; the inexplicability of love; and the murderous consequences of love’s absence.

Wow! $2, what a deal!!!




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