Saturday, August 01, 2015

WDW Picture of the Day

The awesome gravediggers during the Mickey Not So Scary Halloween Party parade.


Friday, July 31, 2015

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Monday, July 20, 2015

Ant Man Review

We saw Marvel's "Ant Man" on Friday, and it was almost as much fun as "Guardians of the Galaxy". In fact, I would say that the Marvel's movies can be roughly grouped into two: The Avengers-class movies, which had a more weighty subtext, and the "Guardians + Ant Man"-type movies, which have a more tongue-in-cheek feel to them.

The movie is almost like a caper rather than straight-on "I need to save this world" level of scenario. There are subtle tie-ins with Hydra/SHIELD/Avengers (Hydra being the one and only customer for the invention in the movie). There are also clever moments in the movie when the stories were being told of the source of such-and-such. And there are certainly more laughs in this movie than there was in "Age of Ultron".

If you stay for the mid-credit scene, you'll definitely get a sense of an impending sequel. But you should stay on till the END of the credits, because you'll see a tie-in with Captain America. In fact, there is a very strong hint of what could be expected in the next "Captain America - Civil War" in that one short scene.

This was a very enjoyable movie, and to me, more enjoyable than "Age of Ultron". Highly recommended.


Saturday, June 27, 2015

Inside Out Easter Eggs

If you haven't seen the movie and want to discover them your self, then don't read the link that lists a lot of the Easter eggs in "Inside Out". And if you really haven't seen it, WHY HAVENT YOU?



Friday, June 26, 2015

Walt Disney World Bans Selfie-Sticks

All I can say is: GOOD RIDDANCE!

Starting this Tuesday,  WDW will ban all selfie-sticks in WDW theme parks and water parks.

Spokeswoman Kim Prunty told the Orlando Sentinel ( ) selfie-sticks have become a "growing safety concern for both our guests and cast."
Selfie sticks will also be banned at Disneyland Resort in California on Tuesday and at Disney's parks in Paris and Hong Kong starting July 1.

I find the selfie-sticks to be not only annoying, but also a safety hazard. It sticks far out, and can easily hit another guest, especially when the park is busy. And having it on rides is CRAZY! It reaches out farther than your arms and one can easily hit the attraction during the ride.


Thursday, June 18, 2015

"Phineas and Ferb" Final Episode Drew Record Audience

The final episode of "Phineas and Ferb" last Friday drew record audience for DisneyXD channel.

Phineas And Ferb ended its 126-episode run with the two-part “Last Day Of Summer,” which drew 1.4 million viewers — the biggest original telecast in Disney XD’s six-year history. The finale of the series created by Dan Povenmire and Jeff “Swampy” Marsh closed the cable net’s 73-hour P&F marathon of every episode plus five hourlong specials and telepic Phineas And Ferb: Across The 2nd Dimension. The marathon drew 10.9 million unique viewers, including 6 million kids 2-14.

I expect a complete box-set DVD/BluRay of the entire series, with tons of extras. This series was a classic.


Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Inside/Out Insider Access

We had a really good time at the Fathom event for Inside/Out last night. When we picked up our tickets, we were each given a poster, and a lanyard with a card attached at the end of the lanyard. On the back of the card is a special code for a bonus 50 points at the Disney Movie Rewards website.

Here's the poster:

Here's the lanyard:

While waiting for the start of the program, they showed clips of interviews with the actors that voiced the 5 main emotions, and also a series of fun facts from the movie. Some of the fun facts are: the ice-skating ring that Riley goes to in San Francisco is at the same location as the Disney Family Museum; the fatigue outfit worn by one of Riley's classmates has Toy Story characters all over it. I can't remember the rest.

When the program started, they showed the behind the scenes look at the Pixar campus, more specifically, inside the Steve Jobs building. Our "tour guides" were Inside/Out Director Pete Doctor and Producer Jonas Rivera. It was a fun, informative tour of not only the building, but also the various people, offices, and quirkiness. There is only ONE bathroom area in the entire building. Steve Jobs wanted this because it forced people to leave their offices and walk, increasing the chances of people interacting with each other and exchanging ideas.

We got to see the jaw-dropping office of John Lasseter. They then found John in a closed-office working on Toy Story 4. He would not let us into the office, but came out and talked about Inside/Out. And yes, he was already wearing a Hawaiian shirt with Inside/Out characters.

It was a fun tour, and something we probably don't get to see much of.

Then the movie started. This is the best Pixar movie since Up and Toy Story 3, in my humble opinion. The animation is getting way too real, and they really animated "Joy" quite well. So the movie is visually spectacular. The storyline is also rather interesting and refreshing. It really is a story of an ordinary little girl, and that made it extraordinary.

The short story before the movie, Lava, was just plain-out charming. I lava it! The animation, especially the ocean and the dolphins, looked almost real!

After the movie, there was a 30-minute interview and Q&A with Pete Doctor and Amy Poehler. The questions were submitted by the audience members at the event via Twitter. Again, this was fun, funny, and quite entertaining.

This was the first Fathom event that I attended. If they do something similar with Disney-related events, I probably will attend them again.


Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Inside Out

In theater for the Fathom event of Ibside Out. We got posters and landyards.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

A Conversation With The Creators of "Phineas and Ferb"

As the final episode of "Phineas and Ferb" approaches, we have a news report on a conversation with Dan Povenmire and Swampy Marsh, the creators of the hilarious show.

I still claim that this is the cleverest animated show since "Pinky and the Brain".


Sunday, June 07, 2015

Nutella Fruit Waffle

What's better than a Nutella fruit waffle sandwich from Sleepy Hollow at the Magic Kingdom? Why, TWO Nutella fruit waffle sandwiches!


Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Review of "Tomorrowland"

This movie has been getting mixed reviews, and a lot of pundits are already declaring that it is a failure almost on the scale of "John Carter". I beg to differ.

It is not without faults. In fact, the ending was a big letdown. I'd say the final 30 minutes of the movie felt rather contrived and tired. However, the first 2/3 of the movie was spectacular! It was visually stunning, and the storyline felt like it was heading somewhere uncharted. I like watching a movie that kept me unbalanced and not able to guess at the next move. Tomorrowland did that for me, at least, the first 2/3 of it.

I'm not going to reveal the storyline, because doing so will be a disservice if you haven't seen it. But I will say that the 3 leading characters in the movie were quite engaging, even the "robot". Where the movie lost it for me, and where I started to be able to guess what will happen next was when they were all back in Tomorrowland and the battle to stop the impending doom. This was where the direction and the "message" of the movie was delivered to heavy-handed. In fact, for the movie that started off so mysteriously and so complex, the ending and the reason for all the destruction was too simple and not at all convincing. It ruined what was until then, a fun, visually-amazing movie.

I will still recommend this movie even with the flaw. I think people will enjoy it more than they expect. If you are a Disney park fan, you'll recognize familiar landmarks in the movie.

BTW, it turns out that "Tomorrowland" is the first movie ever to be shown, in certain theaters, in the new Dolby Vision. It was shown that way at the El Capitan theater. The next movie that can also be seen in Dolby Vision? Disney/Pixar's "Inside/Out".


Cinderella is an important movie for Disney

Scott Mendelson at posted this article about recent Disney movies.  The premise is that Cinderella represents Disney material that was not acquired by buying a company, and is therefore a potential good source of successful movies.  Tomorrowland (the movie) is apparently heading for a disappointing financial result, thus joining other movies such as John Carter and The Lone Ranger.  While Tomorrowland had some good moments, overall it was lacking what it takes to make a good movie.  At times, it struggled to make any sense and the ending seemed like the worst choice among several alternate endings.  Cinderella, according to the Forbes article, was a solid movie with a good story line.
The ability for Disney to make blockbusters based on their older animated films has given them a whole new franchise of sorts. But the surprisingly (?) robust artistic and financial success of Cinderella has given this would-be franchise a huge dose of respectability and credibility.
Now you may argue that there isn’t all-that-much to celebrate about Disney looting its animated vaults, and I’m not here to dissuade you of that notion. But the relative artistic triumph and unquestionable financial victory of Disney’s Cinderella (which earned over five times its budget just in worldwide theatrical) is the needed jolt as Disney attempts to fashion big-scale blockbusters outside of the Marvel/Star Wars universe.

Tokyo Disneyland rides stopped by what? reports that several rides in the park, including Journey to the Center of the Earth were stopped due to a magnitude 5.5 earthquake. 
Journey to the Center of the Earth wasn’t the only attraction that stopped because of the quake. Other rides like Star Tours, Space Mountain, and Splash Mountain did, too.
People were evacuated from the rides as a precaution but it seems there was no real damage.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

John Lasseter Talks About Upcoming Disney and Pixar Slate of Movies

During a 2-hour presentation at Cannes Film Festival, John Lasseter talks about the upcoming slate of Disney and Disney-Pixar movies. This includes Finding Dory, The Good Dinosaur, and others.


Tuesday, May 19, 2015

"No Selfie Sticks" Signs Begin To Show Up At WDW

You KNOW that this was bound to happen sooner or later.

Our last trip to WDW this past December was an eye-opener because I had never seen so many selfie sticks being used all through the parks. People were either filming themselves while walking around the parks, or on rides. Holy cow, this thing could be dangerous especially in a crowded area!

Sure enough, Disney is beginning to crack down on selfie sticks. It starts with Thunder Mountain Railroad.

So on Friday, Walt Disney World went a step further to make that point. It posted a "No Selfie Sticks" sign at the Magic Kingdom's Big Thunder Mountain Railroad.

A few weeks ago, Disney told workers to remind guests of that policy.

Still, Thunder Mountain has had an especially high number of incidents in which the ride had to be stopped because of selfie-stick use.

Similar signs have been posted at Space Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain at Disneyland in California.

It'll require just a few guests being poked by this darn thing in a crowded area before I see a ban on this nuisance.