Sunday, July 27, 2014


Okay, so yeah, the new Hercules was seriously fun as hell.

I had a feeling that this would be a pretty fun flick from the trailers alone, which saw The Rock comically screaming "I AM HERCULES!" in an over-the-top manner. In fact, the worst (or best?) instance of this was when a friend and I saw Noah earlier this year, in which this trailer acted as the lead in to our movie, and we were left in absolute hysterics during Noah's quiet opening, as the trailer for Hercules and that line in particular continued to linger fresh in mind. But the thing is, fun as the trailers looked, they don't even scratch the surface to just how much fun this movie actually is.

For one thing, without giving away too much, this movie actually gives a pretty different take on mythology behind the Hercules legend, and one that continues to be interesting all throughout. In fact, I was pretty surprised to find that almost the entirety of the footage from the trailers only makes up maybe the first five minutes of this thing. They really don't give away anything in the marketing, which makes for an especially pleasant experience, as you'll find you really aren't quite so sure what you've gotten yourself into relatively early on.

But what you've gotten yourself into, thankfully, turns out to be a blast from start to finish. The ever increasingly over-the-top action is simply awesome and exciting throughout, and in classic action movie fashion, our heroes spew out some absolutely epic one liners at every turn.

And I found I really enjoyed the cast of characters we come to follow, cliche as they may be at times. The Rock does his thing, and he's just as awesome as you'd expect, but who really steals the show here is Ian McShane, whose antics as he embraces his inevitable demise are simply a thing of glory. But in addition to the movie's fresh take on the title character that even pokes fun at other incarnations of the character at times, there are some nice twists and turns to the plot itself, even if it is relatively simple enough for the most part.

Simply put, I wasn't exactly in the best of moods going into this thing, but this movie was just what I needed to lift my spirits. This latest Hercules completely surpassed my every expectation of it, and if you're in the need for just an all around good, fun time at the movies, then I could not recommend this one highly enough.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Queen Elsa Compilation

So this is a thing that I've been up to lately. I decided to work on a little Elsa project, which I've been calling the Queen Elsa Compilation (or in some circles, merely The Elsa Project).

Basically, this all started up when I was talking to my Ninja Kat Helper, Nikki, at Hamacon about a month ago. We were talking about some of our favorite cosplayers we had seen at the con so far, and I brought up someone who was dressed as the absolute perfect Elsa from Frozen the day prior.

I then went on to say how at all the cons I've been to so far in the year, Elsas had been surprisingly relatively uncommon, with only one that I've seen making an appearance at each of them. But oh what an appearance it was, as time seemingly stood frozen in place as they stepped into the room, and my heart would skip a beat as, there she was! And all eyes would be drawn to her, as she commanded the attention of the con-goers around with her stunning presence. And really, that's been my experience with all of the best dressed Elsas I've come across so far.

So anyways, I mentioned something to Nikki along the lines of what if I were to take a picture with every Elsa I came across and post it online, like some sort of an internet meme or something. And she thought it was a great idea, urging me to go through with it. And so I have. And these are the results to date.

Now as I share these pictures with you, I'd also like to discuss the movie itself a little. I've come to really love Frozen quite a bit. I love it even more with each new viewing, and its inherent flaws seem to diminish that much more as well, to the point where, in their own little way, they actually sort of compliment the film as a whole.

This Elsa just couldn't take her eyes off me.

Frozen may well have come to the point where it's now my favorite Disney animated film to date. And even if it's debatable as to whether or not it's actually the best, it most certainly is the most important film to come out of the studio in its entire history. So many people say that this is a movie for little girls, but really, its message is so strong and so powerful, but more importantly, its universal. It's a message that speaks to people of all ages, of all genders. And just because it's being told in what's technically a Disney Princess film does nothing to diminish its powerful message.

But not only has Frozen become my favorite Disney animated film, but Elsa is also most certainly my favorite Disney Princess at that (though she technically becomes a Queen, but I assume she would still count, right?). I just find her and her struggle so relatable on so many levels, and there's such a compelling amount of psychological depth behind all of her trauma that shaped her into the person she would become. Not to mention that she's a total knockout (though I guess you technically couldn't call her hot!), and not just in looks, but her voice! No matter how many times I listen to "Let It Go", I still get chills. And I've especially come to appreciate "For The First Time In Forever", how timid and reserved she is in the original rendition, and how comparatively open and full of emotion she sings in the reprise.

It was around this point that I realized that I'm such a socially awkward penguin, I never know what to do with my free hand until well after it's too late...

It's things like that, as well as the cleverly well thought out, foreshadowed, and recurring lyrics that string throughout all of the songs that really make me love the movie more as a whole in subsequent viewings. And even the songs I initially didn't like I've come to appreciate for similar reasons, for what they bring to the whole. And yes, as I mentioned before, even if the movie is flawed at times, the fact that it's about the struggle of these very flawed and broken characters coming to grips with their deep, personal issues actually sort of compliments the film in its own charming way.

... though I did figure it out eventually.

And as much as I love the film, it's probably no wonder that I hate just how severe the backlash against it has become as it has risen in popularity. I dunno, I guess I just really can't even comprehend how so many people can claim that it's a legitimately bad movie, when most criticisms I've heard from its harshest viewers seems to ultimately boil down to the movie daring to be something different from the norm. The thing is, I can easily come up with a rebuttal against almost every critique against the movie from the crowd of active haters, I just kinda wish that I didn't have to, and I truly wonder if there would be so many openly rallying against it like they are if the movie hadn't become as insanely popular as it has.

But anyways, now that I've gotten my updated feelings on Frozen off my chest, going back to The Elsa Project, I did find it interesting how some people decided to change things up a bit as well. For instance, here's Rainbow Elsa:

Hipster Elsa:

And even King Elsa:

And there were also times when Anna got in on the action...

... though that didn't always end up with the best of results.

Or did it? ;)

But through all the fighting and bickering, we've all just gotta remember that, in the end, only true love can thaw a frozen heart.

So that's about it for the Queen Elsa Compilation for now. And no, I didn't quite manage to get a picture with every Elsa I came across, though for those that I missed, I guess I've gotta learn to just let it go. Until next time!