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Showing posts from February, 2013

Single Review: Michael Bublé: "It's A Beautiful Day" (2013)

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"It's A Beautiful Day" is the first single from Michael Bublé's upcoming sixth studio album, "To Be Loved". It's an uptempo song with pop overtones. Heavily recalling his previous hit, "Just Haven't Met You Yet", "Beautiful Day" showcases everything we love about Michael Bublé.

The song is fun, happy and cheerful, with lyrics that describe the end of a relationship without the sadness. I thought the song had a strange intro, with music reminiscent of a version of Jingle Bell Rock I've heard somewhere. Within seconds though, the song pulls you in and makes you want to sing along.
"It's a beautiful day and I can't stop myself from smiling!" goes the chorus, lifting your spirits and putting a smile on your face. The sunny  feel of the song makes you want to take a stroll through a park and whistle as you go.

Bublé's vocals are flawless, as always. His soft, smooth vocals shine, going into his upper registe…

Predicting The Oscars: Best Animated Feature

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What a phenomenal year for animation 2012 was. In fact, it was so good, that the Academy couldn't even fit all the amazing movies into one category (think: Rise of the Guardians). All five of this year's nominees are bold, dynamic and expertly crafted. I'd go so far as to say that 2012 was a landmark year for animation in general.

The Oscar race for Best Animated Feature is just that this year- a race. And it's a tight one. For the first time, anyone could win. Pixar's winning streak was broken last year by Rango, but can it re-establish itself as an Oscar baby with Brave?Will Tim Burton finally win his very first Oscar for Frankenweenie? Will Aardman pick up anotherOscar like they did with Wallace and Gromit for The Pirates!? Could underdogs LAIKA grab their first Oscar for ParaNorman? Or will it all come down to the legendary Walt Disney Animation Studios' Wreck-It Ralph, which proved that they still have what it takes to reclaim their hold on the animation …

Single Review: Mariah Carey: "Almost Home" (2013)

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I never actually do single reviews, just albums, but hey, I couldn't resist this one! It's also my first music review of 2013!


"Almost Home" is a new single released to promote the upcoming Disney film Oz:  The Great and Powerful. In addition to the already "great and powerful" promotion Disney is doing for this movie (they want it to be a big hit), they've also roped in megastar Mariah Carey to lend her incomparable vocals to the movie.

When I first heard the announcement of a tie-in single, I immediately thought of the 1990s, when stars would sing big ballads over the end credits of movies (think Celine Dion in Beauty and the Beast and Titanic, Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey in The Prince of Egypt).

When I heard the single, every Mariah Carey song of the 1990s came back into my head. The inspirational lyrics, the uptempo beat, the mid-range belting, everything. "Almost Home" isn't your big "up the mountain" ballad. It's …

Predicting The Oscars: Best Animated Short

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It's that time of year again! All eyes are on the mother of all awards shows- the Academy Awards. Since I love animation of all kinds, I figured the natural thing to do would be to do short reviews and predictions of the animated shorts and movies nominated this year. Let's do it!

ACADEMY AWARD FOR BEST ANIMATED SHORT FILM- 2013

 1. PAPERMAN (★★★★★) Paperman played in theaters before Disney's Wreck-It Ralph back in November 2012. Personally, I loved it as much as I loved Wreck-It Ralph itself. The story of a young man in New York City usi ng  nothing but paper planes to get the attention of a pretty girl is just magical. Everything about this short works perfectly, the pacing, music and animation. Speaking of animation- this is the first time Disney has employed a new animation technology hat blends CGI models and classic hand-drawn animation seamlessly. The effect is smooth and flawless and reminds us of good old 2D animation.








2. ADAM AND DOG (
★1/2) Adam and Dog is a ne…

Movie Review: Mulan

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The 1990s was arguably the most revolutionary time not just for the Walt Disney Animation Studios, but for animation in general. After the phenomenal success of 1989's The Little Mermaid, there was a creative awakening of sorts. Disney realized what truly made them great in the first place- great stories, magical music and groundbreaking animation. Films like Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, The Lion King, and Pocahontas followed, all of which are considered true animation classics. This was the period of the great Disney Renaissance. Critical reception and box office profits soared, and "Disney" became a household name for a new generation.

The period from 1989 to 1999 is generally regarded as the Renaissance decade. Released towards the end of it in 1998, Mulan was another great success. Its winning combination of beauty and brains- lavish animation, stirring songs and a solid story- have made it another Disney classic today.



Set in ancient China, Mulan tells the story o…

Valentine's Day: Single Edition

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Love it or hate it- you can't ignore it. That's right, the annual festival of fluff, the celebration of sappy, the carnival of corny...you get the point.

It's Valentine's Day. Again.

Don't get me wrong. I'm super supportive and encouraging. What's better than a day celebrating love? No, my reason for writing this is for all my fellow perpetually single people out there- who have no idea how to celebrate such an insanely hyped and commercialized day. Just broken up? Join the club!

So here are

 Gary Wright's TIPS FOR SURVIVING VALENTINE'S DAY
  (IF YOU'RE SINGLE or JUST NEED HELP)


1. Count on Movies: Movies are proven to alter your mood.Watch an action or horror movie (or, I also recommend an animated one, but not a romantic one- think Pixar). Some ones that would work are the Scream series, Die Hard, or the Toy Story franchise (if you can put up with Barbie and Ken). Stay away from the Notebooks and Titanics that will be on TV all day long.

2. Get O…

Movie Review: Peter Pan

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After the post-War success of Cinderella and the lukewarm response to Alice In Wonderland, Walt Disney turned to yet another literary classic for his next big animated feature: J.M. Barrie's play and novel, Peter Pan.

Peter Pan
is a film that is carried almost entirely by children- children are the heroes of the story while adults are either villains or reduced to the background. The story combines every element of childhood fantasies- swashbuckling pirates, beautiful mermaids, mysterious Red Indians and sparkling pixies- into a story that pushes the boundaries of imagination. Shadows have a life of their own- and are sewn back on with a needle and thread. Crocodiles swallow alarm clocks and chase after pirates. With faith, trust, and a little bit of pixie dust, children fly off following the "second star to the right".

The story itself is slight, but fantastical nonetheless- when young Wendy Darling is reluctant to "grow up", she, along with her brothers, fly …