Archive | March 2012

Seuss in the movies! The good, the Vlad and the Ugly. (The bad Vlad, not the bunny Vlad, with the cookies)

The title of this post would suggest that  I am going to reflect upon three movies, each differing in quality, but I will actually only be discussing two.  When I was a kid, I had the same emotional connection, and joyous thrill from reading Dr. Seuss, as I am sure every child does. The great thing about Dr. Seuss, much like Disney, is it spans so many generations, it becomes a comfort to everyone’s childhood. One of my favorite things about pop culture is that it allows us all to connect with one another in familiarity without having anything else in common. One kid may have grown up with an abusive parent that dealt drugs, and another kid had the traditional nuclear family with a doctor father and school teacher mother, who spent thursday nights taking part in “Family Fun Night”.  But if those two meet as adults, and are roughly from the same generation, there is a good chance that they can both reminisce fondly about the characters living in Pee Wee’s playhouse, or how they always cheated when they read the “Name your Adventure” books. It’s a universal warm and fuzzy, that may seem superficial on some level, but is still nice no matter what.

So back to the original point, the film adaptations of Dr. Seuss books that we all loved as children.

The Cat in the Hat may actually be my least favorite movie ever. Since my son loves to watch it, I have to sit through it almost once a day. At least, parts of it anyway. Now, I am hoping this is a stage, and that my son’s film taste improves greatly. My greatest fear is that my son, at 14, will list his favorite movies as Freddy Got Fingered, Glitter and Jack and Jill. Well, perhaps I am being a bit harsh, he is two and someone has to watch the Cat in the Hat, I suppose.

Why do I hate this 2003 live action version of the classic Seuss book? There’s the hateful vibe, the horrible mugging by Mike Myers, Alec Baldwin and Sean Hayes, the creepy quality of the entire flick, the lack of anything resembling sweet, funny, or charming. There is so much I hate about this movie, I could write a novella. Mike Myers manages to phone this role in by combining every annoying character in his repertoire (Wayne, Shrek, Linda Richmond, the parents from So I Married an Axe Murderer, which is basically just Shrek.) and throws them in a blender to create the cat. I feel like Cat in the Hat deserves so much better than recycled mannerisms. The humor is nonexistent.  For a long time now, Perhaps starting with Toy Story, kid’s movies supply jokes for the kids and enough winking humor for the adults to enjoy. The problem with The Cat in the Hat is that they attempt to do the same thing but it’s mean-spirited and inappropriate. The cat holding a garden hoe and saying “You dirty ho, oh baby you know I didn’t mean to call you that”, is weird and not funny. The Cat in the Hat is a waste of what could have potentially been a great, silly, movie with a whole lot of good clean mischief. In the book, the Cat is annoying, in the movie he’s just a dick.

Now, a good movie made based on a Dr. Seuss story is Horton Hears a Who. An animated film that is visually lovely, and has a fantastic cast. There’s Jim Carrey, Steve Carell, Amy Poehler, Will Arnett, Seth Rogen, the list goes on and on. Immediately adults are in because the cast is a bunch of comedy badasses. But here’s also something great about the movie; it’s sweet, funny and entertaining. It also manages to be funny without being at all inappropriate. There is no reason to work blue, remember I Love Lucy and The Dick Van Dyke Show? Those shows are still hilarious and super clean. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy certain brands of Vulgar comedy, Kevin Smith and Judd Apatow make some of the funniest movies out there, but there is a time and a place people. I just love Horton, and Morton, and the Mayor and every other character in Horton Hears a Who. The movie is delightful. If you have children, or even if you don’t have children, you must watch it. I am eagerly awaiting, and hoping that they will make Horton and the Egg.

Anyone else have certain movies that your kids love, but that make you want to throw stuff at the television? I’m assuming I don’t just need anger management classes.

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Getting that baby itch…

I would life to preface this post by letting everyone know that I am not pregnant, nor do I plan on getting pregnant in the near or distant future. Having said that, I am getting that itch. It’s only a slight itch and it goes away nearly as quickly as it appears. For most women, they know what itch I speak of; the baby itch.

Before I became pregnant with my son, I was so excited about the prospect of having a baby, and it turned out great because my son is insanely awesome. But after I became pregnant with him, gained 70 pounds, becoming an enraged hormonal psychotic, and nearly dying from childbirth, I wasn’t too eager to have another one right away. But alas, making plans is for fools because it was only 8 months later when my period outdid Godot. This was even more problematic when my pregnancy coincided with my husband and I separating.

But all was well, I had a healthier pregnancy, a happier pregnancy (sans  baby daddy) and a safe and easier birth. So now I have a son that is 2 and-a-half and a daughter that is almost 14 months, and they are each other’s best friends. I love that they have reached an age where they can actually play with each other. They are in that great stage, where my son lets his sister beat him up but always helps her out when she needs it. Nothing cuter than overhearing your son tell his sister how good her coloring is going.

As I am moving out of my house, and selling old stuff, I have to part with all the baby stuff my children have outgrown. It seems to have happened far too quickly. In some ways, I am glad that they are getting to an age of more self-reliance and less of a mess, but there is a sadness that always looms.

If I were still married, and happily so, I would be prepping for another baby. Perhaps it would not have been a big rush though. But seeing as how I have no prospect or interest in marrying someone else, or even having a child with someone else, it’s a rather moot point. But it is an interesting thing how your biological clock keeps ticking, and occasionally becomes audible after your children outgrow things.

Luckily, I will only be 27 this month. So there is a lot of time ahead of me. My mind might change a million times. A year ago, I stated with fiery certainty that I would never marry again and would definitely never have children again. But I think the lesson is simply to never say never.

But for now, I shall cherish every moment with my children. Enjoy the growth that they make. Hold on to the fact that they still very much need me and really are just toddlers. I am also eagerly awaiting the birth of my first niece, who is going to be born this month. That excitement is overwhelming in such a different way.

If I feel the itch again anytime soon, perhaps I will just get a cat.