Tag Archive: 2008

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

Confession time. I know everyone on the planet pretty much loathed Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, but I didn’t mind it so much. Yes, it’s a little weird with the whole inter-dimensional beings and all, but realistically, all of the Indiana Jones movies are a little on the heavy side when it comes to the super-natural. What it does have is the same manic energy as the original trilogy.

It’s 1957 and instead of Nazis, Indy has to contend with the Soviets, led by the slightly unhinged Dr. Spalko (Cate Blanchett). Joining him on this adventure is Mutt Williams (Shia LaBeouf), a young greaser; Harold Oxley (John Hurt), an old colleague of Indy’s, and Indy’s old flame Marion Ravenwood, who is now known as Mary Williams and is Mutt’s mother.  This rag-tag little group is trying to return a crystal skull Oxley found to a temple in Peru, while fighting off the Soviets who are hot on their trail.  Along the way there’s a fridge nuking, man eating ants, and a trip over three waterfalls.

The cast is first rate.  Harrison Ford is back in his element as the roguish archeologist and Karen Allen is just as feisty and beautiful as she was in Raiders.  Shia LeBeouf does his best Marlon Brando impression, but it works. Cate Blanchett’s Ukrainian accent seems pretty good, but her dark bobbed hair seems a little off, and it’s hard to take her too seriously as an evil villain.

Like I said, it’s not the best of the series, but I don’t think it’s as terrible as it could have been.  My recommendation, give it a chance and don’t think too hard.

OPI Peru-B Ruby

OPI’s Peru-B-Ruby is a lovely polish, but it’s not very original.  In fact, I’m pretty sure I’ve reviewed a similar polish several times before.  It’s almost a fuchsia pink with shimmer.  What did impress me was the coverage of this polish.  I find that shimmery polishes often take three coats, but this picture is only two coats, so not bad.  ~E

The Forbidden Kingdom

Jackie Chan and Jet Li in a movie together. You know I’m there. And The Forbidden Kingdom didn’t disappoint. It is the story of kung-fu obsessed teen (Michael Angarano, who I will always think of as Will Stronghold), who is drawn into a quest in an alternate, magical and ancient China. There he is befriended (which might be too strong a word) by a drunken Immortal (Jackie Chan), a stoic monk (Jet Li), and a knife throwing orphan girl (Yifei Liu). They set off to return a powerful staff to the cursed Monkey King (also Li, smiling more in one scene than I’ve ever seen him in all of his movies combined), the only person who is powerful enough to defeat the evil Jade Warlord (Collin Chou).

There are some wonderful action sequences here (obviously) and it’s great to see Chan’s and Li’s different fighting styles up against each other (I’m especially fond of Chan’s use of handy props in his fight choreography). The filmography is beautiful (I so want to visit China) and the acting if pretty darn good. The plot is perhaps the weakest point, but if you just turn off your brain (not too much, or you won’t understand what is going on) and just sit back, I’m pretty sure you’ll enjoy the ride as much as I did.

China Glaze Adventure Red-y

This is China Glaze’s Adventure Red-y from last Fall’s On Safari Collection. It is a deep red/burgundy cream (trust me, it’s a lot darker and vampier in real life than it is in this picture) that applied beautifully. I almost got away with 1 coat, but needed 2 to even out some bald patches. A very flattering color, if a little boring. ~K

The Mummy 3

Okay, so maybe a third Mummy movie wasn’t the greatest idea, especially since it doesn’t have Rachel Weisz in it, but when you throw Jet Li and Michelle Yeoh in, does that even the balance? Maybe…because they’re awesome. And don’t get me wrong, Maria Bello is quite good as Evelyn, I just can’t think of her as the same Evelyn, you know? And that changes my perspective on all of the other characters, like Rick and Jonathan and even Alex (although Alex as an adult is a whole other issue).

The mummy this time around is the original Chinese Emperor played by Jet Li (who should never play a villain with that adorable baby face) who, in his search for immortality, seriously pissed off a witch (Michelle Yeoh) and was cursed to become a terracotta monstrosity. Enter the O’Connells who wake him up (as they usually do) and then have to do their best to stop him from destroying the world (all in a days’ work for them).

Despite its best efforts, this is the least funny of the three movies and the father/son conflict between Rick and Alex (how did he grow up so fast???) seems forced and unnecessary. I’m so glad that John Hannah came back for this, because it really wouldn’t be a Mummy movie without Jonathan. All in all, this one is probably a pass because it makes me want to watch other, better movies (like Hero for my Jet Li fix).

BB Couture Dragon's Breath

This is BB Couture’s Dragon’s Breath, a gorgeous fuchsia polish with blue and red glitter. I used 2 coats for this picture and a topcoat (because the glitter makes it just a little bit rough without topcoat). This is so pretty, BB Couture is such a wonderful (is somewhat price-y) company. ~K

The Dark Knight

I remember waiting in line to see The Dark Knight at a midnight showing, fervently hoping that it would be as awesome as the trailers made it seem. And I was not disappointed in the slightest! The Dark Knight picks up where Batman Begins left off (which left us hanging on that tantalizing hint of the Joker’s coming). Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) is busy cleaning up the streets of Gotham and has the criminal element running for cover. Enter the Joker (Heath Ledger), a psychopath bedecked in clown makeup and the yin to Batman’s yang. Also trying to stomp out organized crime is newly elected DA Harvey Dent (Aaron Eckhardt), the city’s “White Knight” and Rachael Dawes’ (Maggie Gyllenhaal…it’s a good thing they didn’t cast her brother Jake as Batman, right?) new squeeze.

My complaint from the first movie, that it focuses too much on Bruce Wayne and not enough on Batman, swings to the other extreme here, as I find that not enough attention is spent on the man underneath the mask. All the veterans from the first movie are just as excellent this go around, while newbies Aaron, Maggie and Heath bring their A-games as well. Heath in particular is so good that I can’t help gleefully cackling along with him, even as he commits atrocity after atrocity. One of my very favorite moments in film (not just this film, but all films) is when the Joker has just broken out of jail and is riding through the streets in a stolen cop car–his head hanging out the window, his hair blowing in the wind and his eyes closed in a moment of pure ecstasy. It’s a powerful shot that both disturbs and electrifies me. This is movie making at its very best.

Daring Digits Why So Serious

This is a not so great picture of Daring Digits’ Why So Serious? (I promise I’ll get a better picture when I find some sunlight), a deep purple polish with different sized green glitter. I used 2 coats here with a topcoat, although I maybe should have gone with 3. This applied quite nicely (for a glitter polish) and perfectly captures the spirit of the Joker. Fun!  ~K

Eagle Eye & LA Girl Urge

Eagle Eye

I didn’t like Eagle Eye, which made me sad because I like Michelle Monaghan and Shia LaBeouf (even if he is an odd human being in real life).  I think my biggest problem with Eagle Eye was that there was a lot of far-fetched plot thrown together and not enough character development.  All the characters were very one-dimensional in my mind.

Shia is Jerry Shaw, a college drop-out who will never live up to his twin brother, especially after his brother is killed in a car accident.  One day at the ATM, Jerry sees that his account balance has increased by $750,000 and the ATM starts spewing money at him.  When he gets back to his apartment, he finds it full of weapons, classified documents, and all sorts of stuff that make him look like a terrorist.  He receives a call on his cell phone telling him the FBI is coming and he needs to get out of his apartment.  As would probably be the case with anyone, he is too confused to do much of anything and is arrested.

He is interrogated by Billy Bob Thornton, who seems like the most competent character in the entire thing, although he does let Jerry escape on his watch.  Michelle, meanwhile, receives a similar call that gives her directions to meet up with Jerry or her son will be killed.  Together, they are forced to do all sorts of crazy things and are totally at the mercy of the voice on the other end of the phone.

Sounds interesting, right?  Well, it is overly long and takes quite a while to get to a point where you really have a good grasp of what is going on.  Overall, it was probably worth seeing once, but I’m not planning on seeing it again.

LA Girl Urge

LA Girl Color Addict’s Urge is a shiny green polish with gold shimmer.  It’s actually a bright, lively color, but I just didn’t love it on me.  I thought the green brought out the redness in my skin.  If you have the right skin tone, I think this would be an awesome and fun polish.

This picture is three coats, and it definitely needed it to be opaque.  Even with the shimmer, it still didn’t dry as quickly as I would have liked.

Even though I didn’t love this polish, I did like it better than Eagle Eye. ~E

Igor & OPI Sweet as Annie-thing

As I may have mentioned, I like animated movies.  Even animated movies that are a wee bit on the silly side.  Like Igor.  It’s a fun little movie, but kind of goofy.  I think the most interesting aspect of this movie is how lively John Cusack sounds.  Although he’s no Keanu Reeves, John seems to be a little bored in most of his roles.  As an Igor dreaming of being an evil scientist, Mr. Cusack seems to be having a good time.

In fact, most of the cast seems to be enjoying themselves.  Molly Shannon plays Igor’s “monster”, who turns out not to be so monstrous and has dreams of her own.  King Malpert, voiced by Jay Leno, initiates the Evil Science Fair to allow the evil scientists to demonstrate their evil inventions.  Eddie Izard voices Dr. Schadenfreude, the reigning evil science fair champion with kingly ambitions.  Jennifer Coolidge is his shape-shifting girlfriend who helps him steal the best evil inventions from the other scientists so Dr. Schadenfreude always wins.  Steve Buscemi and Sean Hayes are pretty hilarious as Igor’s sidekicks, a rabbit that cannot be killed and a dim-witted brain in a jar.

After creating life, in the form of a giant woman who takes the name Eva, Igor attempts to activate her evil bone by giving her an evil “brain wash.”  Instead, she decides she wants to become an actress and her dream role is the plucky little orphan Annie.  Igor helps Eva with her audition, secretly directing her to take out all the other evil inventions while singing “Tomorrow.”  In honor of Eva’s starring moment, OPI’s Sweet As Annie-thing seemed like a good polish.

This polish (from the Valentine’s Day 2009 90210 Collection) had great coverage; it only took two coats.  Even though it has a bit of a shimmer in it, the drying time was still a lot longer than I would have liked.  The brush was also a little bigger than I would have liked, as anyone who reads these blogs probably already knows.  As for the color, it was pretty red, which is far from my norm, but I still kind of liked it.  There’s just something about having super red nails that amps up the wow factor. ~E

Personally, I think a movie that has Steve Carell, Anne Hathaway, Alan Arkin, and the Dwayne the Rock Johnson in it would be hard pressed to be anything but awesome.  So unsurprisingly, Get Smart is pretty awesome.

Watching it this time around, I laughed like crazy when Steve Carell is in the airplane bathroom (trust me, it’s funny) or when he is dancing with a rather large woman while undercover.  Steve Carell is perfectly cast as the bumbling Maxwell Smart, an analyst working for the secret government agency CONTROL, but who longs to work in the field.  After CONTROL’s nemesis organization KAOS attacks their headquarters, only Maxwell’s and Agent 99’s (Anne Hathaway) identities are unknown, so into the field they go.

I don’t want to give away too much of the movie, since there is a traitor amongst the agents working for CONTROL, but all the actors seem to be enjoying themselves.  Dwayne Johnson has a great scene where he is stuck working in an office after everyone’s identities are compromised and he takes out his frustrations on a co-worker with a stapler.  I think the best part is Alan Arkin’s (the head of CONTROL) response.  Terrence Stamp is great as the leader of KAOS, and Bill Murray makes a funny cameo.  Oh, and James Caan makes an appearance as the President of the United States.  He does his best exaggerated impression of George W. Bush.

I thought this movie would be super easy to find a nail polish for, but I struggled.  Shouldn’t there be a million polishes out there with spy names, or any that have names having to do with intelligence (since the movie is called Get Smart)?  Well, there probably are, but I didn’t have any in my possession.  I went to Wal Mart and happened upon Wet N Wild’s Undercover, which seemed like a promising name.

To be honest, I haven’t used a Wet N Wild polish since probably high school.  I decided to give this one a try and there were pros and cons.  First of all, I’ve never been a huge fan of pink and red nail polishes.  I know, those are the most obvious color choices for polishes, but I have never really liked them.  As you can see, this polish is kind of a dark, dusty rose color.  Once I got it on, I actually quite liked it.  I thought the color was a nice match for my skin tone.  Second, I’m not a huge fan of cremes, but this one worked for me.  I put on two coats and left off the top coat, and I didn’t have any issues with damaging the paint job.  I might start leaving the top coat off altogether when I put on cremes.

Now for the cons.  The brush is weird.  I don’t know if it’s bad, or if I just wasn’t used to it, but it’s called a ManiCurve Pro Brush and it is huge.  I am not the neatest when it comes to putting on nail polish, and this made my sloppiness even worse.  On the plus side, it got my nails covered pretty quickly.  Maybe I’ll have to give the brush another chance to come to a decent conclusion.

Like I said, I was not surprised that I liked Get Smart.  Wet N Wild’s Undercover on the other hand, for the most part, left me pleasantly surprised.  ~E

Ponyo & OPI Ocean Love Potion

I can’t say why, but Ponyo is my favorite Miyazaki film, even though it’s one of his weirder ones.  I love Howl’s Moving Castle and My Neighbor Totoro, and I even liked The Secret of Arriety, but Ponyo is my favorite.  It is actually the first, and so far only, Miyazaki movie that I purchased for my own collection.

Ponyo is a retelling of The Little Mermaid, with five year olds.  Ponyo, or Brunhilde as her dad calls her, is a goldfish who makes it up to the surface.  She is rescued by Sosuke, a little boy who is very popular with all the little ladies at his day care and all the little old ladies at the care center where his mother works.  Ponyo quickly learns to talk, and her favorite thing to say is “Ponyo loves Sosuke,” followed closely by “Ponyo loves ham.”

As usual, a terrific voice cast was assembled for the English dub.  Tina Fey plays Sosuke’s mom and Matt Damon is his dad.  As for Ponyo’s parents, Liam Neeson plays her stressed out dad and Cate Blanchett is her mother, who just happens to be the goddess of the sea.  The biggest claim to fame for the two children is that they have famous older siblings.  Ponyo is Noah Cyrus, sister of Miley, and Sosuke is Frankie Jonas, who’s the younger brother of the Jonas Brothers.

Because Ponyo being human is ruining the balance of nature, her parents, well mostly her mom, decides to allow Ponyo to stay a human.  This will only work as long as Sosuke truly loves Ponyo.  If not, you guessed it, Ponyo will become sea foam.  It seems like a lot to put on a five year old’s shoulders to me, but Sosuke isn’t really your average five year old.

Anyway, the animation is outstanding.  The underwater scenes are quite lovely.  Miyazaki’s movies aren’t exactly preachy, but they often hint at problems in our society.  This one deals with polluting the oceans.  Seeing all the garbage in these hand drawn oceans always makes me a little sad, but hopeful that it’s not really as bad in reality.

OPI’s Ocean Love Potion (from the 2002 Surf Party Collection) seemed like a natural fit for Ponyo, since it’s all about love and the ocean.  This was a beautiful almost transparent turquoise with green shimmer.  Because it was so transparent, it did require 4 coats.  It’s also one of OPI’s black labels, so it’s pretty stinky and doesn’t really work well with a quick dry top coat, at least not until it is already pretty dry.

So in conclusion, much like Ponyo, Ocean Love Potion is a keeper. ~E

Penelope & Orly Mysterious Curse

Penelope is one of my all-time favorite movies.  It is just the perfect combination of humor, fantasy, and romance.  Not to mention brilliant writing and even better acting.  Honestly, the cast of this movie couldn’t be better.  Christina Ricci is absolutely adorable as the titular Penelope, a young woman cursed with a pig snout because of the actions of her blue-blooded ancestor.  She has to be accepted by one of her own kind to break the curse.

Penelope is constantly reminded that she is not the only victim of her curse and that no one has suffered as much as her mother, played to perfection by Catherine O’Hara.  Richard E. Grant plays Penelope’s patient (but still a little nuts) father.  I have previously expressed my love of Peter Dinklage, and this was the movie where I really decided he was amazing. Here he is a reporter trying to prove that Penelope, the pig faced girl, actually exists.  His partner in crime is Simon Woods, a blue-blood who tries to tell the world about Penelope, but no one believes.  These two are hilarious together.

James McAvoy plays Max, a down and out blue-blood who is hired by Peter and Simon to get a picture of Penelope.  He is so good in this movie and he has great chemistry with Christina Ricci.  Reese Witherspoon also plays a minor part as Penelope’s quirky friend and guide to the outside world.

Like I said, the cast is terrific, and the writing is so witty.  Here’s one from Penelope’s mom after Penelope shows her face to one of the blue-blood suitors, “Do you think I showed your father my mole after our first date?  No, I had the good sense to wait until after we were married!”   Reese plays kind of a free-spirit and has some great quotes.  For example: “What guy looks at me and thinks picket fence?  Unless he’s crazy…and I’m done dating crazy, ya know.  Done.  Unless it’s meant to be.”

There’s another great scene between Penelope and Max where they have a beautiful conversation about chess.  I know, it sounds weird, but it is one of my favorite parts of the movie.


Natural Light

For all the love I have for this movie, I have to say that I was a little disappointed in the nail polish that I chose to go with it.  My sister suggested Orly’s Mysterious Curse from the Dark Shadows collection.  I love the color, but the polish itself was pretty bad.  This was my first Orly, and I was hoping for a good experience, but the polish didn’t go on smoothly and it clumped like crazy. These pictures are 2 coats.

The color is a blue/purple duochrome and is quite eye-catching.  That is the best thing I can say about the polish.  On the other hand, I doubt I will ever run out of good things to say about Penelope. ~E

I have a confession.  I want to marry Ben Barnes.  He is just so pretty with those chocolate brown eyes and his accent (even though it changes in the next film).  Oh, and although he doesn’t do it in this movie, he can sing as well, which just adds to his prettiness.  I had to include this confession to give fair warning that my future husband (fingers crossed) may influence my review of the movie Prince Caspian.

As for the movie itself, I think it is a fitting follow-up to The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.  I think it gets a bad rap because it wasn’t as financially successful as its predecessor, but I think it was still a very well-made film.  I think part of its problem is that the story is not as well-known as The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.

The actors playing the Pevensie children all play their parts admirably.  The character of Peter drives me crazy because of his bull-headedness, but William Mosley still manages to make him sympathetic, even when he’s being stupid.  Edmund is much more likable, Lucy is still the same sweet little optimist, and Susan is more warrior princess than whiny, naggy sister.  And I just think Liam Neeson has such a terrific voice.  Perfect for a God-like lion.

There are other great additions to the cast besides Ben Barnes (I’ve already expressed my undying love, so you have to know that I thought he was wonderful), including Eddie Izzard (well, his voice at least) as Reepicheep, the sword-fighting mouse, and Peter Dinklage as the dwarf Trumpkin, who fills the hole left by James Macavoy’s absence, and really, can Peter Dinklage do wrong?

When thinking about a color for this movie, I think of something dark and silvery.  I’m not sure if it’s because one of the major battles takes place at night, or because the bad guys’ armor is silver, but I always associate this movie with dark greys, blues, and silvers.

With that in mind, I chose OPI’s Lucerne-tainly Look Marvelous to go along with Prince Caspian.  It’s a lovely dark grey with silver glitter.  I put on two coats, but it definitely needed a third.  I think that is a good rule of thumb for any glittery polish.

The color was nice.  In this picture, the polish in the bottle looks much lighter than it does on my nails.  I personally liked the darker look and I thought it went along much better with the movie.

I know that anytime I think of this polish, I’ll think of Ben Barnes and dream. ~E

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