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Archive for the ‘the movin pitchers’ Category

ok, we’ve had a little discussion on the Facebook page about the top five Pixar movies and here’s my top 5 (and the order is not significant):

Up

Directed by Pete Docter and Bob Peterson
Score by Michael Giacchnio

Ratatouille

Directed by Brad Bird and Jan Pinkava
Score by Michael Giacchino

The Incredibles

Directed by Brad Bird
Score by Michael Giacchino

Wall-E

Directed by Andrew Stanton
Score by Thomas Newman

Finding Nemo

Directed by Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich
Score by Thomas Newman

so, whatchoo think?

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If you haven’t yet started listening to the Nuclearity podcasts, start today. Hugh Duncan does a great job in producing an interesting, informative, and provocative (in the Hebrews 10 sense) 15 minutes. Especially good is his “You Love a Lucy” series on marriage. Very helpful. In part 2 of the series Duncan addresses the issue of how actors and actresses protect their marriages while on stage/on camera. Most movies involve love scenes with men/women who are not married. So what is an actor to do if he is concerned to protect his marriage or avoid temptation to immorality?

Hugh interviews Eduardo Verástegui (producer of and lead actor in the outstanding movie, Bella) and Kirk Cameron (star of the movie Fireproof) on how they seek to guard themselves and the actresses they work with, from the temptation to infidelity. Both men have determined to treat all women with the respect God has commanded they be given and so they have determined not to participate in scenes that involve kissing, inappropriate behavior with women, and, of course, nudity. Can this be done without turning every film into a stiff and weird “Billy Graham” movie? Sure it can and it can be done with beauty, grace, and romance — it just takes a little more creativity to make it work.

Hugh Duncan observes that we use stunt doubles to protect the lives of actors (since preserving life is more important than any movie), so why not use “kissing doubles” in an effort to protect the marriages (and purity) of the actors? Isn’t protecting marriages more important than a movie as well?

Nowadays we’re even being assured that no injuries were caused to any animals during the production of the film. Duncan notes that he looks forward to the day when movies include the assurance that “no marriages were harmed during the making of this movie.” Great point. Give Nuclearity a listen.

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The Chorus is a movie that has been making the rounds among some of our members but I just got to watch it a couple of nights ago — and I’m glad I did. It’s the story of a failed musician turned school teacher (Clement Mathieu) who takes the position of prefect at a French boarding school for orphans and troubled (and in trouble) young men. The name of the school is Fond de l’Etang (“the bottom of the pond” or “rock bottom”) and it lives up to its name (indeed, you expect to see “Abandon all hope, all ye who enter here” engraved above the main gate under the school’s name).

The school’s headmaster (Rachin) has succeeded in producing a depressing and soul-killing environment in the school by his indifference and cruelty. Prefect Mathieu is at first overwhelmed by the hardness and bleakness of the school and he quickly becomes the target of the students’ pranks and mocking. Things deteriorate until one night he hears the boys singing a song ridiculing him. It’s then, at his lowest point (“rock bottom”), that Mathieu gets the idea of starting a chorus and teaching the boys to sing (and, in the process, to love) music — which he hopes will open up new doors for the young men who have themselves reached “rock bottom” at Fond de l’Etang.

This movie is all the more surprising given the fact that director Christophe Barratier, made the movie with a budget under $6 million, only one camera, and a cast made up largely of amateur child actors.

The film (like others of this same type) shows the power of music to restore and transform (and if you’re thinking Mr. Holland’s Opus or Music of the Heart, you know the story). But this time the story is better told. It’s worth watching, even if, as one reviewer said, it’s a bit filled with le fromage (French cheese).

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Paris and love

Larry Lawlace mentioned this movie in a comment and it reminded me of how much I enjoyed it. It’s a collection of 18 short films directed by 18 different directors. The stories are based upon various locations in Paris. It’s been a while since I saw it and I can’t remember exactly which of the films are not so hot (there are some and so I can’t give it an unqualified endorsement) but let me commend one of the shorts in particular: “Bastille.” Written and directed by Isabel Coixet, “Bastille” is the story of a man who meets his wife for lunch prepared to tell her that he is leaving her for another woman. Before he can give her this news, however, she tells him that the doctors have determined that she has a terminal illness and only has a few months to live. What begins as another story about infidelity, ends as a story about love. Beautiful.

[Ok, going back to review the contents, you can safely avoid the majority of the shorts. But don’t miss “Bastille”; “Loin du 16e”; “Parc Monceau”; and “Place des fêtes.” These four are worth your time — and if the only one you watch is “Bastille,” you won’t be a loser]

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