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Observations

Dad Confession: One Direction

This is my “Dad Confession” for the day.

So I had a moment this morning that should remain private. What happens in the car when you’re alone should remain in the car. Right! Here I am innocently driving my car to work when I hear the local radio station doing live crosses from the local school. Its cute, they play the school choir and everything seems right with the world. But then in a moment of weakness it happened. I don’t know what it was, maybe the first few bars of the song, the sweet production or simply a neuron relapse in the left back lower quadrant of my frontal lobe?

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Observations

Happy STAR WARS Day – May 4th be with You

maythe4th

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Media

Movie Review: Dr. Seuss’ the Lorax

The Lorax

Mary Poppins said a spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down. With the Lorax the 3D animation experience is coated in syrup, sprinkled in hundreds and thousands and covered in orange candy floss. The experience was fun, immersive and thought provoking. It’s amazing to see how the on screen interpretations of the very simple yet iconic 2D illustrations from the Dr Seuss books have developed over the last few years. We remember the first live action movie that came through the mastery of Ron Howard and Jim Carrey when “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” arrived in cinemas in 2000. Now with the enhanced development of computer animation the cartoons really do ‘live’ on screen.

The 1971 book by Dr Seuss (Theodor Seuss Geisel) focussed on saving the environment and forty years later the same message is more topical than ever through society. The cute factor is always a great endearing character to bring in a serious message. The use of fluffy funny teddy bears and ‘Hallelujah Chorus’ singing fish is a great backdrop amongst the forests of zebra trunked candy floss shedding trees. The quality of animation of all aspects of people, animals and objects is so brilliant you do want to reach out and hug the screen.

The story for Seuss noobs surrounds a young man called Once-ler (Ed Helms) making his way in the world to the comic relief of his family. He sets out and discovers the Truffula trees that will give him the material for his famous Thneeds. This one size fits all device sells like mad and the crowds want more. More Thneeds means less trees and the environment pays a heavy price. So what to do with the predicament for the environment? Enter the Dr Seuss version of Jiminy Cricket, the Lorax, a humble bundle of fluff who rides in on a storm and leaves by the seat of his pants, literally. Danny DeVito is an inspired choice for the voice of the Lorax and brings just the right amount of charm and some whimsical sarcasm for flavour.

Once the backstory is told we enter the modern day and meet Ted (Zac Efron) as he stumbles through early puppy love over the artistic Audrey (Taylor Swift). The flowing red locks and sparkly voice are a magnet for this relationship but how to win her heart. Ted finds out that in their community no one knows what a tree is. They embrace artificial trees with disco lights and suck on bottles of produced air but the idea of nature is long lost to the monopoly of big business. But here Ted finds a shared dream when Audrey says she will marry the man who produces a real tree.

Setting off on his motor-unicycled journey takes Ted out of the glass bubble of his world to seek out a Truffula tree in the vast darkness of harvested fields long forgotten. When he finds his way to the house of the Once-ler the encounter inspires young Ted and puts him at odds with a newly introduced character, the “Air Mogul” O’Hare played superbly by Rob Riggle. The battle ensues for the last Truffula Tree seed and a case for growth and photo-synthesis will eventually win the day. It’s an enjoyable ride and worth the weird, the wacky and the familiar. In amongst the key characters watch for Ted’s Grandma played by Betty White and initially you may be forgiven for thinking Ted’s Mum is the ‘Nanny’, Fran Drescher but it’s actually Jenny Slate.

When the people who brought you Despicable Me say they want to bring Dr Seuss to a new audience you can take them seriously with both the message and the vehicle. Despicable Me’s Director Chris Renaud returned to the camera on this one and did an amazing job with this seriously funny film. This should give more than a pinch of delight to those who have just found out he will be delivering us Despicable Me 2 in 2013.

Probably one of the best cartoon 3D movie experiences I have enjoyed where the landscape and action pieces all have the right depth of story and imagery to immerse you in the message of the Lorax.

4 out of 5 popcorns

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Observations

Hole in my head

This is a short post for those with strong stomachs. No Photoshop on this baby. Thankfully the pain has now gone but the hole will take longer to heal up.

holeinyahead

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Observations

Live Young

This TV commercial from the bottled water kings Evian is cute and inspirational. Its one that is only made for one reason, to enjoy!

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Observations

The Box – Hand written memories!

Ever lost something so special but couldn’t even remember how it went missing. What if it contained your memories? What would you pay to get your hands on the memories of the past.

My memory is a specialised filing system, and so is my wife’s. For me, numbers, websites, passwords, and things of this nature come easily. But ask me what year we went to the ‘that’ beach for a holiday and I’m stuffed. My wife can’t remember the password to her email account but if you ask who gave us that set of glasses for our wedding or what she made for dinner at the youth group camp, she will be able to tell you the name, the dish and the recipe. She is truly amazing!

A few months back I received news that a ‘box’ of personal items had been found amongst the records at Rhema Broadcasting Group which is the New Zealand ‘sister organisation’ to who I now work for, UCB Australia. Somehow in my stint in Auckland as Admin and Personnel Manager this box of memoirs had become buried and lost.

10 years later it was in my hot little hands. Filled with photos of acting days, newspaper clipping reviews of my time treading the boards and a ton of youth group memories I began walking back down a memory lane or two.

While the memories go back through good and bad years they tell a story. Its a story of growth and living, of thought and thanks and a few chaotic tall tales along the way. Over the next while I want to move this box of thought from handwritten and type written words into the digital age and place them here on my blog.

Watch for photos, newspaper clippings and poetry coming out my ears. Some good, some really bad and some about real moments in Pitchford History. I’m creating a new category for ‘The Box’ to keep track of these pieces.

Oh and BTW, there were two All Black posters lost in that move from Auckland to Brisbane back in 1998. So if you have my large black and white collectors posters of Sean Fitzpatrick or Christian Cullen please get in touch to return them. No questions asked of course!

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Media Observations

My EDS Videos from the Superbowl

I have had a great deal of respect for the creative team behind the EDS Superbowl ads. They did a great job of explaining the inherent difficulties in upgrading or transitioning between technologies while trying to keep a business ‘in the air’. Enjoy!!