Archive for the Movies Category

A little spoilery here…
Let me get this out of the way first. LOL! Yes, Hugh Jackman is bare assed naked in the movie. If that’s your reason for going, you will not be disappointed. =) Beyond that, I believe this is the best X-Men movie so far.

Why? Besides my new favorite character, Quicksilver, it’s thought provoking.

Again, spoilers ahead. You’ve been warned. No turning back…

I’m sure we’ve all thought, if only I knew then what I know now. In the world of X-Men, the wish becomes reality. In a last ditch effort to avert complete disaster, Wolverine’s “consiousness” is transferred fifty years back in time to his younger self. It’s 1973.

His mission: Contact Magneto and Professor Xavier, convince them to team up, and oh yeah, stop Raven/Mystique from committing the act that will lead to the ultimate destruction of mutants. Not hard, right?

Now, I’m not going to spoil anymore. But like Terminator, where the mission was to kill Sarah Connor before she could give birth to the man who would save humanity, it raises a lot of questions. Makes you think.

If you could go back in time to your younger self, what would you say or do? Is there one event you would change. And if so, how would it impact not only your own future, but the future of the world?

Finally, I think this was a brilliant move by the writers. They rebooted the franchise and made it fresh. The last fifty years of X-Men as we knew it has been eradicated and they can tell new stories. Well done.

2014 is here and it started off with the flu. First I had it, then my children. Thankfully, my husband has alien DNA and is immune. As you can imagine, all my wondrous plans for implementing new goals went by the wayside. To say I’ve been discouraged would be a vast understatement.

Yet despite all the obstacles in my path, the flu was one of many, the universe was sending me a message. I didn’t hear it at first, but it all came clear today.  FCRW chapter mate, Alesia Holiday shared a link to Sherrilyn Kenyon’s inspiring speech from the 2011 RWA® National Conference. Do yourself a favor and read it. It really spoke to me.

Previous to this, I saw the movie, Lone Survivor and read the book the movie is based on by Marcus Luttrell, the one Navy SEAL who survived Operation Redwing. The movie is awe inspiring, but the book broke my heart. I was literally crying for the loss of such wonderful men, but mostly for the bond they shared and their never say die spirit. They are always in the fight.  I thank God for men like Marcus and his brothers and they will never be forgotten by me.

I added this together, and while writers and warriors have very different jobs, our attitude needs to be the same. You can’t give up, you can’t quit, no matter how hard it gets, no matter how insurmountable the odds. And you need a support system. Like the brotherhood of the SEAL teams, writers need other writers to succeed. Every time you support another writer, you’re supporting yourself.

I’ll end with one of my favorite quotes: “If you’re going through hell, keep going.” – Winston Churchill

Spoiler Alert

From the movie trailer, you’d expect Pacific Rim to be a combo of Transformers, Power Rangers, Mech Warrior, and maybe even a little Star Wars, as the suits the Jaeger pilots wear remind me a little bit of Storm Troopers. So when my family wanted to go see it, I didn’t expect much other than cheesy fun. Was I surprised? Yes!

Pacific Rim at its core, is a love story. Let me break it down for you….

Raleigh Becket never wants to pilot a jaeger again, because the last time he did his brother died horrifically, but if he doesn’t millions will die.

Mako Mori’s dream is to pilot a jaeger, because her family was killed by the kaiju and she wants vengeance, but her only chance is emotionally scarred Raleigh.

And like in any good romance, they must heal each other by drifting together to pilot the jaeger. Drifting is a mental connection to share the neural load necessary to control the giant machines. The black moment comes when Raleigh flashes back to his brother’s death during their drift and sends Mako chasing her own dark memories. Their drift almost ends in catastrophe and they are ordered to stand down.

But some things are worth fighting for. And when the moment comes, Raleigh and Mako know their connection is strong enough to overcome all obstacles and they are the only hope of defeating the Kaiju.

Despite the obvious cliches, abundance of cheese, and my urge to yell, “It’s morphin’ time!” at the screen, I wanted to jump to my feet and applaud at the end when (spoiler ahead), a seemingly dead Raleigh said, “You’re squeezin’ me too tight.” So they didn’t kiss. Oh well, they hugged, and I know there are kisses in their future. Can’t wait for Pacific Rim TWO!

 

James Bond vs. Mitch Rapp
Recently, the stars aligned and I was gifted with a new James Bond movie, SKYFALL, as well as a new Vince Flynn novel featuring my favorite CIA Assassin, Mitch Rapp. This got me to thinking, how do these two heroes matchup?
Both work for their respective governments in the clandestine service. Bond, or 007, is an MI6 covert agent who carries a Walther 9mm short and whatever cool gadgets Q may have sent along. He’s a classy dresser and ladies man, but not afraid to get his hands dirty in a brawl. Bond has demonstrated his ability to operate multiple types of machinery, although they usually end up destroyed. He answers only to M, his female boss.
Rapp is the type of agent the CIA doesn’t even acknowledge exists. While 007 may work in the shadows, Rapp is completely in the dark. His targets never see him coming and there’s no evidence he’s ever been there, other than the bodies. He also answers to a female boss, CIA Director Irene Kennedy. But while M tries to rein Bond in, Kennedy generally lets Rapp work with autonomy as long as he gets results. Dress and weapons are very different as Rapp is a master at blending in and going unnoticed, and always packing more than adequate firepower.
From the romance standpoint, both men are driven by painful loss. Bond’s love died trying to protect him, but he cannot forget her lies or betrayal. Rapp joined up after his fiancée was killed by terrorists. Both fear growing close to anyone as it usually results in a death sentence. While Bond has yet to do so, Rapp tried love again, but she and his unborn child died in a blast meant for him.
While there are many similarities between the two men, who would I want at my back in a fight? To be fair, I am using only the Daniel Craig incarnation of Bond to compare. And it is three movies vs. many books. Although if all goes well, there will soon be Mitch Rapp movies. If I had to choose, I have a soft spot for Mitch. And, I feel he’s better prepared and more knowledgeable than Bond who often seems to be led around by his latest leading lady and falls into trouble rather than having a plan. Plans often go awry, but Rapp always has a contingency to fall back on and I think I’d have a better chance of getting out alive.

Note: Sadly, my favorite author, Vince Flynn, tragically died before his time this past June. His publishing journey from dyslexia to self publishing his first book, to the New York Times list, and now a movie deal is inspiring. Vince, you will be missed. RIP.