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Thursday, July 03, 2008

Wednesday: Berry Farms, Clouds and Hancock

Yesterday our familial pod ventured out to our annual 'hunting'( as my youngest calls it)Berries Expedition. We try to get out to this farm early since it's now Hundred Degree Days here in North Texas. Try, but sadly we're always a little behind schedule. The drive to the berry farm is about two hours from home base, and we make it out there about mid-morning. The 'hunting' was good, nailed four pecks of the juicy goodness that will soon become an assortment of sweet breads to share with family and friends.

We headed home about mid-afternoon and the vehicle of transport decided to select that time to malfunction. The thermostat hit the dreaded "H" mark not five miles from the farm. Thankfully we were not on the interstate yet and a nice gas station was in front of us. The Travel Gods were smiling on us I suppose.

Darling Man popped the hood and found the radiator had sprung a leak along the top seal. I took the young daughter inside to use the facilities and remembered this product that stopped radiator leaks. I'm not a fond proponent of the mechanical quick fix solutions but when you're two hours from home with a trunk full of berries you have to be practical. Darling Man tried to act unimpressed with my resourcefulness and as the car cooled, added the solution grumbling how he hates to use 'crap like this'. The crap worked and we headed West.

Driving home the girls passed out in the back and I, inspired perhaps by another blogger, began watching the fat, fluffy cumulus clouds and pulled out my camera. She sometimes sees angels in her clouds, I was curious what I'd envision morphing out of the shapes. I was surprised. Perhaps I shouldn't have been.

First up was a cloud bearing a suspicious replication of a mythical beast I've been waiting to see for quite some time: the Magical and Mysterious Flying Pig! I jabbed Darling Man and said, "Look! Cloud Pigs flying!" He looked at me like I must have contracted some sort of heat exhaustion and turned up the radio. So happens that Big Head Todd and the Monsters, "Sweet Surrender" was on...

I scanned the cerulean skies to the left of the 'Flying Pig' and low and behold a fierce dragon complete with a puff of cloud smoke was hot on my cloud pig's tail. A seeming celestial chase ensued with my Cloud Pig waving her puffy legs and frantically - for a cloud creature - flapping her cottony piggy wings.

Then I saw a cloud angel coming up from below the two. She seemed to be blowing air upwards... at the Cloud Dragon. It began morphing and disintegrating. The little Cloud Pig scampered off, apparently joyful at the turn of events. I was entertained for a little while, anyway.

We had tickets last night to see "Hancock". Religious and Scientology speculation aside, I'm a big Will Smith fan. I've loved this guy's characters and his acting for years, seen all of his flicks. The story line I'd seen in the trailers and read on the website seemed just completely intriguing. I'm a fan of the Superhero genre, and last flick I went to see was "Iron Man", I loved it as well as adored Robert Downing Jr.'s return in all of his sexy, quirky glory.

"Hancock" started out so well. Loved the surly, whiskey downing swaggering and staggering character. Loved how he flew, not perfect like plastic coifed Superman, but all arm swinging and gangly, hitting the Earth with a spray of concrete and cement instead of lightly touching down in a spandex suit. a unique approach to the whole superman, super hero ideal. I was loving it. Jason Bateman was great too, I enjoyed his series that FOX cancelled, "Arrested Development" and his character in this flick was similar to the one he played in that television series. Charlize Theron plays his wife and she too comes across very genuine. Overall the acting portion of this movie with its casting seemed destined to be great.

Seemed being the operative word. About a third of the way through it's like the writers went on some strange tangent and started a whole new story morphing some pieces out of the X-Men story lines and forgetting some of the initial premises they were first laying out in this tale of a rogue super human.

Certainly Hancock is not your typical superhero but that should not lend free reign to bend and break storyline at a whim. The writing takes a dive that spirals as fast as one of Hancock's swoops over the city. Too many small yet important bits of detail are completely omitted that would have added to the explanation of this story. The fascination he has with eagles, as an example. He wears one on his wool cap and at the end one sits atop a building with him, but no explanation comes forth about that. The storm that erupts over the city when the twist in the storyline takes place, borrowing from Storm of the X-Men with skies morphing from blue to laden black, complete with sister twin tornadoes whipping through the main street. The need for Theron's character's secrecy and then that's blown wide open yet the folks who witness the event don't recognize her later - just did not match up. The film starts its own morphing hodgepodge that fails to deliver on its edgy, satirical potential.

All super heroes have something that is their weakness. Everyone of them has to have an issue that keeps them relatable and sympathetic and Hancock's no exception. He has his, but the relaying of the what, or should I say the Who that can bring him down lies on the editing room floor mostly, apparently because the film touches on it in a sideways glance without a satisfactory written or dialoged line up.

I left thinking the flick too short, that too much could have been done with it to make it so much better. So yes, I was somewhat disappointed. The audience seemed to love it although when the film hit that big hole in the story line road anyone with a love for the premise promised would have been hit disappointed. It has many really glowing and great moments, but that mid-section part that had me thinking, "Oh no, oh no, don't go there" lingers. Darling Man did not like the movie so much and had to comment to one of the other audience members who asked us if we liked it, "No, that wasn't that good." He's a man of few words but knows what he likes.

Will I go see "Hancock 2"? Likely, just to see if Smith can turn this around. Firing those two main writers might be a good start.


  1. Anonymous11:21 PM

    I see Woody Woodpecker coming up to bat in that 3rd one.

  2. LOL. I'm wanting to take my camera all over now taking sky shots. Damn that Brightlight chica, Bwahahaha.