Music, Uncategorized

Tuesday Tunes 

What have I been listening to this week? Amid the repeated requests for the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Theme, the Hot Dog Dance, and Paw Patrol, I have managed to get some “Mommy Music” in as well, a la Beauty and the Beast! 

I’ve been digging the soundtrack from the new live-action movie, especially Evermore (confession: I listen to this song repeatedly.  Both the Dan Stevens version and the Josh Groban cover; both are fantastic and wonderfully emotional without being copy-cats of each other). 

If you’re like me and on a too-tight-to-buy-music-budget, good news: YouTube has a playlist of the full soundtrack! You can listen by clickingthe link here.

My faves: 

  • The three prologue tracks 
  • Gaston
  • Days in the Sun
  • Evermore 

Enjoy! 

What are you listening to this week? Do you have a fave on this album I didn’t mention? Leave a comment and tell me about it! 

Movies

Everyone needs a LaFou

Note: It took me forever to finally get to a theater and see the new Beauty and the Beast!  I was blown away by the reimagining, and wanted to share my thoughts here.  If you haven’t seen it and don’t want spoilers about what’s new, you probably shouldn’t read on.
Also, you may have noticed that the blog has changed.  Yes, this used to be The Disney Housewife blog! I’m trying something new that I’ll explain in a later post, and I’ll keep writing a ton of Disney-related stuffs, so please keep stopping by to see what happens!

Out of the live action movies Disney has been releasing over the last several years, I’ve seen Alice in Wonderland, Maleficent, and Cinderella, and I have to say that the new Beauty & the Beast far surpassed the others I’d seen.  Before I get into it, though, here’s my quick-takes on the previous three I’d seen:

Alice in Wonderland: Forgettable.  Pretty sure I fell asleep twice, because I don’t remember the end. I love the book, and I don’t even like the animated adaption much.  (Love the world and that other people love it, Hate the adaption.  That’s a thing, right?)

Maleficent: I was SO looking forward to this movie, and I was rather pleased with Angelina Jolie’s portrayal of Maleficent.  But the overall storyline pulled a Frozen for me, aka took a turn in the middle to make an awesome villain the tragic hero.  Can’t we PLEASE let the mistress of evil be, I don’t know, EVIL?  It’s okay to like, and even feel sorry for, someone who hasn’t redeemed themselves by the end of a movie.  (Like Dr. Horrible, everyone’s lovable villain!)

Cinderella: Cinderella is, of course, a goody-one-shoe, but that’s why we all love her.  The film hilights good morals, and the movie won me over with the blue dress.  Plus, even though Cindy forgives her stepfamily, her husband has the balls good judgement to exile them.  Brownie points to Disney for fleshing out one of their most historically boring princes.  Downside: Helena Bonham Carter as the creepiest fairy godmother no one wanted.

Now that those are off my chest… I went into Beauty and the Beast with low expectations, spending far too much of the movie thinking “Oh, they’re going to mess this scene up!”
But it was amazing!

Everything that was added or taken away was obviously given lots of loving thought, and favorite minor characters were fleshed out in a way that added to the movie without distracting from the main action.

One of my favorite things in the film was seeing the relationship between Gaston and LaFou.  Everyone needs a LaFou best bro.  Someone who will pay a ridiculous amount of coin to random people at the local pub just to cheer you up on a bad day.  Someone who will offer you advice when you don’t necessarily want it, and someone who will tell you you’re horribly in the wrong, all while still loving you.  Josh Gadd definitely impressed me with a much more thoughtful version of the endearing buffoon, one who realizes Belle’s dignity more than her suitor, and who has a conscience that guides him to realize he can’t support Gaston after he crossed too many evil lines.

And Gaston was so delightfully manipulative that I wasn’t convinced I’d dislike him much by the end of the film.  In the original, Gaston is annoying and a bully, but he’s so transparent that you can’t understand why an entire village would rally with him to go attack a castle they didn’t realize was important until that day.  Now he’s so good at disguising his true, vicious personality that no one, not even LaFou sees what Gaston is capable of until he’s already acting on his impulses.  For the first half of the movie I kept thinking, “Gaston is too likable!  How will they come back from this?”  Of course, once he leaves someone to die a gruesome death because they were annoying and in his way… that did it.

But I think that’s why I liked this portrayal.  Gaston actually makes the audience believe that he’s interested in Belle for more than being a pretty prize.  At first he tries to relate with Belle about books, of all things.  Really, truly tries.  And tries to make her feel better when the townspeople are mocking her.  Granted, this is all for his own ends of marriage,  but he is so convincing, and so good at manipulating the entire town, that it’s scarily realistic.

With Beast, I’ll admit that I had low expectations after The Tragedy of Grand Moff Tarkin’s Face.   But I was again pleasantly surprised that I never questioned whether or not Beast was real.  He was just Beast.

And I love that he’s now good, and actually as nice as his staff keeps claiming he is.  Beast isn’t a bully who has to be changed by a woman, he’s just battling a horrible childhood, years of depression from isolation and hopelessness, and a case of DAMMIT DON’T STEAL MY PRETTY ROSES, YOU THIEVES! (Come on, if you live in a castle and someone breaks in, protocol is that you toss people in dungeons.)  He’s never truly mean to Belle, just annoyed that she’s there.  He’s lost any hope that a woman would love him, so why even bother with breaking the spell?
Plus there’s the addition of Beast being literate and having a sense of humor.  He’s not just won over by Belle because he’s impressed by her, they actually have things in common that they can bond over.   And they even already have little inside jokes to giggle over when they’re an old married couple, like the “grow a beard” comment.  #totesadorbs
And to top it off, I got a happy case of “Matthew’s back!” warm fuzzies when Beast transformed, and no one called once called him Adam.  Win-win.

This version of Beauty & the Beast blew me away, but it wasn’t just seeing something I loved as a kid be performed by live people (though yes, my inner little girl squealed with delight a lot).  It was seeing my favorite characters fleshed out to become more than characters with simple motivations and simple personalities, but the whole people that I grew up wanting and believing them to be.

 

 

[Note for parents: it’s a great movie even for kids, though probably not the super littles because there are a lot of intense, surprising or just darker-themed scenes, including finding out how Belle’s mom died.  And for anyone worried about that hyped-up “gay moment,” it’s nothing worse than what was in the original film.]

 

 

Uncategorized

Disney Days 2

Philippe!
Philippe!

Since I missed Movie Quote Monday this week, I had a hankering for some lovely Disney pictures.  And what better place to go for those than to my Photographer Friend!

Trust in me...
Trust in me…
...too much trust.
…too much trust.
I was there the day this was taken! I was not brave enough to climb up to the cave, though. It was high, and I was getting married in three days, so I was avoiding injury.
I was there the day this was taken!  Scar was a little cranky we bothered him. 
Ooh de laly!
Ooh de laly!
"Dishonor on you, dishonor on your cow!" "I don't have a cow!"
“Dishonor on you, dishonor on your cow!”
“I don’t have a cow!”
Look at the reflection in the pendulum. XD
Look at the reflection in the pendulum. XD
Two kinds of street rats
Two kinds of street rats

My Photographer also has some non-Disney photos… I know, not exactly “Disney housewife-y,” but trust me, you’ll like these.

Let me be your wings..
Let me be your wings..
Toothless!
Toothless!

Link to my original post with more of this photographer’s work here.

Happy Disney Days!

30 Day Challenge

What makes it a ‘Classic?’ – 30 Day Disney Challenge: Day 16

Today begs the unavoidable questions: what makes a Disney movie “Classic”?

Is it the older form of animation, all done by hand?

Or perhaps it requires it to be a musical, with at least three or four big numbers.

Must it be a princess movie, or can the dudes and families rule, too?

Left without a clear idea, I turned to one of my trusted sources:

Wikipedia.

No, really, it’s rather reliable when it comes to films and fandoms.  Trust me, if you post something incorrectly Continue reading “What makes it a ‘Classic?’ – 30 Day Disney Challenge: Day 16”

30 Day Challenge

Favorite Disney Kiss – 30 Day Disney Challenge: Day 14

Snogging.

Macking.

Smooching.

K-I-S-S-I-N-G!

Honestly, I forgot this was a category.  And there are so many Disney kisses, yet so little time!  No time to address the important questions, like…

Since when is an under-developed character kissing a ‘dead’ girl completely acceptable?

"It was in the original fairy tale, so a little necrophelia is ok!"
“But, he’s a prince!”     “It’s creepy.”       “It was in the original fairy tale!!”         “Oh, well, that’s ok, then.”

Why does no one remember how desperate Ariel was?

Lessons
Really, does no one else remember Eric pulling away here? #desperateteenager #resepectyourfather #terribleDisneymorals

Why is this still so cute…

"Aww, look at the cute little puppies, accidentally human-smooching!"
“Aww, look at the cute little puppies, accidentally human-smooching!”

…yet as an adult, this makes you want to cringe?

Wait, feel the WHAT tonight?  Ahhh, cover the children's eyes!!!
Wait, feel the WHAT tonight? Ahhh, children, avert your eyes!!!

And, of course, what we were all thinking at the end of Beauty and the Beast…

"Are you sure that's the same guy, Belle?  I wouldn't kiss him until you're sure, he looks REALLY weird."
“Are you sure that’s the same guy, Belle? I wouldn’t kiss him until you’re sure, he looks REALLY weird.  I mean, Beast wasn’t exactly blonde…”

But I digress.

FAVORITE DISNEY KISS

Honorable mention: Eugene Fitzherbert and Rapunzel

Eugene lives!
Eugene lives!  

You remember the moment.  We all thought he was dead, an entire college auditorium fell silent with tears, and several burly guys around us whispered, “But this is a Disney movie!”

And then sheer joy at Flynn/Eugene’s resurrection!  And we were all rewarded with the couple’s long awaited,

we-knew-it-was-coming-at-some-point-because-it-is-a-Disney-movie kiss.

But it’s not my favorite.

I realized, I love this kiss, by my favorite part of this scene is right here:

That hug.
That hug.

I don’t have a single snarky comment for that embrace.  It’s sheer joy, relief, and love all wrapped into one.  They’re just so happy he’s alive, the kiss is kind of an afterthought.

Favorite Kiss: Aladdin & Jasmine

The Disney kiss to measure all other Disney kisses.
The Disney kiss by which to measure all other Disney kisses.

This is the Disney kiss I watched over and over again as a kid.  Obviously it made quite the impression on me.

I love how it’s really Carpet’s idea to make the new couple smooch.

The look of surprise on both Aladdin and Jasmine’s face, which fades from “Wait, what?!” into “Oh, nope, this is good, kissing is good.  I can kiss more. “

Love it.

Oh, and about those weird Disney kisses you forgot about…

Bet you forgot this one, didn't ya?
Made ya look!

Personal recommendation: If you decide to google “Disney kisses” for whatever purposes, don’t go past page two or three, lest you wander into dark alleys of the internet.  *Shiver.*

 

30 Day Challenge, Music

Favorite Love Song – 30 Day Disney Challenge: Day 11

At last!  A day of the challenge that is really easy.

Technically, I See the Light is a love song, but it is also about finding a dream.  And since it is my favorite song in yesterday’s post, I’ve picked another love song that is just lovely.

Love Goes On-Robin Hood

I know what you’re thinking.  “Man, this girl really likes her obscure Disney!”

Which I do.

But this song has always been a favorite, and one that comes to mind whenever I think “Disney Love Song.”

Honorable mentions:

Bella Notte-Lady & the Tramp

So This Is Love-Cinderella

A Whole New World-Aladdin

Kiss the Girl-The Little Mermaid (only because I like to squack Scuttle’s part)

Outside of Ariel's Grotto.
30 Day Challenge, Autism, Music

Music, Autism & a Favorite Song – 30 Day Disney Challenge: Day 10

There is a very important blogging lesson I have learned: when one takes on a challenge that is supposed to have you “do ____ for _____ number of days, all in a row, and don’t skip a day!…” you’re going to skip days.  Whether it’s been an exercise challenge, a writing challenge, anything, there will be days that you have to skip, for one reason or another (like, say, road trips that take all day, National Novel Writing Month, or Thanksgiving turkeys that are completely frozen even though they’ve been thawing for two extra days… to be completely non-specific, of course).

But enough about why this 30 Day challenge is turning out to be a 2 Month challenge!  Let’s go on to the hardest question on this list:

Favorite Disney Song

I know a lot of people who would not have a hard time with this question.  Thank goodness there are four categories of songs in this challenge, so I can whittle my list down a little bit.  But here’s just a tiny bit about my life, so you can understand my dilemma.

I grew up listening to and watching almost every Disney sing-along video cassette that was ever made.

I'm old enough to say that these videos here have the "new" style of covers.
I’m old enough to say that these videos here have the “new” style of covers.

As far back as I can remember, my little sister has had rather severe autism.  Growing up, Disney movies made her happy, but I believe that back then, it had more to do with the music than with the stories.  My sister would Continue reading “Music, Autism & a Favorite Song – 30 Day Disney Challenge: Day 10”

30 Day Challenge

Favorite Sidekick – 30 Day Disney Challenge: Day 7

I have to be honest, the first sidekicks I thought of are Dreamworks characters…

Because Tulio and Miguel act like the sidekicks.  It's really a serious story about the horse's journey.
Because it’s really a serious story about the horse’s journey as he gets stuck with two ridiculous Spanish outlaws.

Oops.

But I do have a favorite Disney sidekick duo, too!  So without further ado… Continue reading “Favorite Sidekick – 30 Day Disney Challenge: Day 7”