Esmeralda composed by Angelique DuFleur using Diving Doll Dark Mage Creator picture image

Esmeralda composed by Angelique DuFleur using Diving Doll Dark Mage Creator

This was created by Angelique DuFleur using Dark Mage Creator at Divine Doll. She took inspiration from both the Disney movie and Victor Hugo. You can really see the inspiration and it’s a really great representation of Esmeralda. Not all the Paper Doll games allow for such a close likeness.

The Dark Mage Creator is also fun to use. I managed to create some Notre Dame de Paris inspired ones.

Jane Eyre 2011 picture image

Jane Eyre 2011

I have been reading Jane Eyre and when I say that I mean I started it like back in September and read it somewhat periodically but it’s ok I have watched the mini-series from 1983 so I know the in’s and outs. Like so many other literary works Jane Eyre has adapted many, many times and this version is from 2011 and it’s alright.

Mia Wasikowska as Jane Eyre 2011 picture image

Mia Wasikowska as Jane Eyre

The way the film is shot is it gives more of a gothic feel and at some points it seems like the shot are more appropriate to a Fantasy work, though to be far this really only at the start of the movie. As the film goes on it takes on a weird near music video style to the direction and editing. Not saying it’s bad just different.

Mia Wasikowska as Jane Eyre Tamzin Merchant as Mary Rivers Jane Eyre 2011 picture image

Mia Wasikowska as Jane Eyre Tamzin Merchant as Mary Rivers

The movie also takes on a flashback framing agent. Meaning the start of the movie has Jane wandering the moors and meeting the kindly Rivers. Her life and meeting Mr.Rochester are told as flashback. The weird caveat is that after she arrives at Thornfield and until she leave it’s unbroken flashback and you forget about the framing. It’s inconsistent and unnecessary. Not saying the idea behind doesn’t have merit because it’s helps create air of mystery but they could have framed it better with more editing or even some use or motif to tie or even contrast her life at Thornfield with her current life.    

Mia Wasikowska as Jane Eyre & Michael Fassbender as Edward Rochester Jane Eyre 2011 picture image

Mia Wasikowska as Jane Eyre & Michael Fassbender as Edward Rochester

Then we have the romance. The chemistry between Rochester and jane is odd in this movie. It’s there sometimes and mostly this on part of the actors.  Michael Fassbender does a fine job as Rochester but Mia Wasikowska as Jane is hit or miss. She does a great gob with the physical end of Jane but it see she can’t really deliver the dialogue. It’s like she doesn’t believe or understand the lines of dialogue.

Mia Wasikowska as Jane Eyre & Michael Fassbender as Edward Rochester Jane Eyre 2011 picture image

Mia Wasikowska as Jane Eyre & Michael Fassbender as Edward Rochester

To be fair, and I really don’t want to bring up the book but Jane Eyre is a hard role to play. She is a women who seem meek and shy but she really bursting with passion and wit. It’s that society and her station doesn’t allow for her to act that way. This movie has be acting more shy except for few lines about her being “passionate” and “ambitious.”  Honestly Jane’s hair styles this movie showcase her personality more.  Her hair is neatly pulled back into intricately braided buns. Something that looks demure and simple but is really complex and dimensional.

Mia Wasikowska as jane Eyre & Michael Fassbender as Edward Rochester Jane Eyre 2011 picture image

Mia Wasikowska as Jane Eyre & Michael Fassbender as Edward Rochester

With any movie adaption of a book they are either cut or run through aspect which this version does and it end so abruptly at it does take away somewhat from the story but all in all it’s an alright version. Not amazing or great but not unwatchable.   

 

 

Side Note- In my grand scheme I hope to look at Jane Eyre and its movie versions more in the future but I need to finish the book first.

Episode 9: Queen of Hearts

Barbara Hershey as Cora Once Upon a Time Season 2 Episode 9 The Queen of Hearts picture image

Barbara Hershey as Cora

Oh! I get it, clever. Very Clever. She’s the Queen of Hearts because she takes hearts.  Anyway back to three narratives. The first deals with how Cora met Hook. Regina wanted Hook to take Cora’s heart but Cora doesn’t wear her heart in her chest, like a peasant. Cora offers Hook a better deal, he gets her close to Regina so Cora can take her heart, geeze this family. However Regina says she killed her out of love being a weakness and Cora, who is playing dead, has a change of heart, pun so intended. Cora then protects a corner of the kingdom from the curse, hence why a part of Kingdom was fine and when Emma breaks the curse, Cora and Hook will go to Storybrooke for revenge and yet to be determined.

Next up in Storybrooke, Regina is trying to change, to be a better person but Rumpelstiltskin cautions her that they CAN’T let Cora get through the portal. So Rumpelstiltskin and Regina use all the fairy dust to set-up a death trap. People find out and Henry does this WHOLE thing about how good wins and have faith in his faith in Emma, yadda yadda yadda. So Regina stops the storm but who comes through?   

In the Enchanted Forest, oh boy. Cora traps the crew in the enchanted prison cell and she gets the compass. And to make things worse, Rumplestiltskin used up all the magic ink, writing Emma’s name over and over again. However Snow manages to use the ink to bust out. So yeah Rumpelstiltskin could have left at anytime. So everyone meets at the magical cure-all lake, which Cora  fixed  and used it to restore the wardrobe’s magic. Question why can she restore the lake but not the wardrobe? Anyway, there is a fight scene during which Mulan gets Aurora’s heart back and Cora tries to take Snow’s heart. Emma however jumps in the way BUT Cora can’t take Emma’s heart. In the end Emma and Snow go through the portal. However don’t feel too sorry for our villain pals. Hook got the petrified  magic bean from the giant and they use the cure-all lake to restore it.          

Also Mulan restores Aurora’s heart and they go off to save Philip’s soul as Cora said something about souls consumed by a wraith are in some other dimension. I think there is a pin on that plot till later.

I thought Snow and Emma’s adventure in the enchanted forest were going to last MUCH longer but sure move it along.  It was a sappy episode especially with Henry’s speech about faith  and love is strength part. But yeah it was a fine episode. Not boring. Though these people must use quick travel because they get to places FAST. Wikipedia says this was the winter finale so that is why this plot got solved. How neat and tidy, so an okay episode.             

 

Episode 10:  The Cricket Game

Lana Parrilla as Regina, Raphael Sbarge as Archie Hopper & Meghan Ory as Ruby, Once Upon a Time Season 2 Episode 10 The Cricket Game picture image

Lana Parrilla as Regina, Raphael Sbarge as Archie Hopper & Meghan Ory as Ruby

Heh,  a pun.  This episode was meh. It does open the story up as Cora and Hook are up to shenanigans.

Basically this episode core theme is a redemption of the Regina kind. And since she didn’t murder Han Solo she seems to be ok I swear Star Wars fans  are weird about that one. I digress. In Storybrooke Regina is persona non grata but since Henry believes Regina is changing Emma tries to believe in Regina. Regina asks Emma if she can still be in Henry’s life, apparently the whole adoption is null and void since curse broke? What? Cora then frames Regina for the murder of Dr.Hopper whom Regina got into an argument with on the pier which Ruby saw. Emma’s super lie detection kick in when questioning Regina, however Snow and Charming think she totally did it since all the convenient evidence points  to Regina. However since the dog saw the whole thing, Emma and Rumpelstiltskin use magic to see Pongo’s memory and confirm it was Regina that did the deed. Actually it was Cora as Regina and some corpse deguise as Archie, Archies is fine. Kidnapped by Cora and tied on Hook’s ship but fine otherwise.

Then the character’s past. Snow and crew capture Regina and believe she can’t change. Snow tries to convince them that they still good in her, that she felt it and she won’t turn Snow over the emperor, wait wrong thing.  Rumpelstiltskin sets up a deal with Snow with no price that is a test for Regina. Snow lets Regina go but she tries to murder Snow. Rumpelstiltskin enchanted Snow against her so Regina can’t do anymore physical harm to her in their world. Regina is then banished and the curse threads are planted, if Regina can’t hurt Snow in their world then she can hurt her in another.        
Yeah this episode is just ok. Not bad but definitely back to a slower pace. I guess that is because in a sense this a soft season opener.  But  that Emma lie detection. Emma knows both Ruby, who saw not-Regina enter Archie’s office and Regina telling the truth  and since she is cool with magic she can’t fathom another option besides Rumpelstiltskin?   

Sofia Carson picture image

Sofia Carson

Let’s travel back to July 2016, a better time,  Disney Star, Sofia Carson, expressed a desire to play Esmeralda. Well to be specific she said that she thought “Esmeralda would be a beautiful role to play.” She also did a recording of Someday in Spanish. So let’s explore this more casting option.  You can see the interview here.

Since she very clearly was suggesting playing a Live-Action Disney Esmeralda we’re just going to consider that version of the character.    

Sofia Carson picture image

Sofia Carson

Let’s start with Carson’s look. Carson is of Spanish descent, more specifically Columbian.  She still rather young and I’m still not sure how old Esmeralda was supposed to given Disney’s age inflation but let’s just say she is in a good range.  She does have the darker features one would expect from Disney’s Esmeralda and contact lenses could give Carson that emerald eye color. One thing that somewhat could work against Carson is that she does have a very youthful somewhat cute look. Just looking at Carson I don’t see her as sultry. Beautiful yes, alluring no. Could she act alluring?

Sofia Carson as Evie, Descendants picture image

Sofia Carson as Evie, Descendants

I will be frank I have only seen clips of Carson’s acting. Carson hasn’t really escaped that Disney style of acting. She is best known for playing Evie in Descendants. Evie is the Snow White’s Evil Queen’s daughter. I wouldn’t know how to judge someone’s acting skills in that or any made for TV movie Disney TV makes. It’s a very specific style of acting. She could be a great actress or not. Can’t say. I would venture to say she might be good pending on the director. Can’t honestly say I can  gauge her acting skills.

Sofia Carson picture image

Sofia Carson

Sofia Carson would not be my first, second to even third pick for Esmeralda but given that she seems to loves and respects the character  she could pull it off and make a beautiful Esmeralda.  
But what do you guys think?  Do you think Carson would make a good Esmeralda?

Diary of a Chambermaid picture image

Diary of a Chambermaid

They say time is the most value thing because you can never get it back and yet my time worthless and yet I still wouldn’t waste it on whatever this thing was.  I’m going to be real with you, I didn’t finish it. It takes me a lot to stop watching something when I started especially when it a mere hour half movie.  Need I remind everyone who reads this blog, I have sat through and watched all the Disney sequels and I think this was far worse BUT why?

Léa Seydoux as Célestine Diary of a Chambermaid picture image

Léa Seydoux as Célestine

Here are few reasons;

There isn’t a single interesting or likable character. I COULD have quit too early, not sure I made it past the 30 minute mark, but no one pulled me into the narrative. The main character seemed like a calculating bitch and not even a interesting bitch, I can take a bitch character but Célestine was dull, pretty but dull.  Everyone else was their criminally unlikable or even duller that Célestine, if such were possible.

The tone of the movie was weird. It seems like it a sex comedy and/or a battle of the classes. I don’t want to say I don’t get French humor as there have been French comedies I have found funny but maybe it’s I don’t get Edwardian style French humor. After the ferret scene I had to turn it off, I saw it coming but scen seem like it was going to prove me wrong but no, rich people suck . Maybe if the film was working for me  I might have gotten however it but no.

The directing. WHAT the heck, god did the director of this love tracking shots.  Half of what I saw of the movie was just following Celestine around. Oh seem how she walks around the garden? Isn’t it thrilling? Intriguing? I honestly don’t know what feeling it was trying to convey. It seemed more suited for a thriller movie or intense movie BUT an Edwardian comedy that has a dildo in a box that’s main function was a source of embarrassment as custom official forced some lady to open the box in a crowd of people? What? Movie, you’re drunk!

Léa Seydoux as Célestine Diary of a Chambermaid picture image

Léa Seydoux as Célestine

Yeah so I didn’t  bother with this movie you can if you want but I don’t recommend it. They ONLY reason I could aside from liking the book would be if you’re a fan of Léa Seydoux and you want to watch the whole of her filmography. Otherwise skip.

 

Side Note – To someone why watched this or even read the book, is there a dairy in it? Or is the title a liar?

Episode 7: Child of the Moon

Meghan Ory as Ruby and Josh Dallas as Charming Once Upon a Time Season Episode 7 Child of the Moon picture image

Meghan Ory as Ruby and Josh Dallas as Charming

Oh, King George, you suck. This episode centers around Red/Ruby. In Storybrooke King George a.k.a Spencer, frames Ruby for murder. David doesn’t buy it and calls him out of him but Spencer burns Jefferson’s hat which was to get Mary Margaret/Snow White and Emma back.  

Also we learn the truth behind Henry and Aurora’s dream.  It’s really their soul being set to a netherworld. Mr Gold gives Henry a necklace to control his presence there and speaks a little with Aurora.

In the character’s past, Red meets more of her kind and  learns how control herself in the wolf form. However Red’s mother tries and makes her choose between her wolf side and human side, Red picks both facets of her being.

The CGs are still bad and I will still bring it up otherwise the episode was great. Red/Ruby is great character as she both strong yet very vulnerable in a believable way.    

 

Episode 8: Into the Deep

Ginnifer Goodwin as Snow White & Josh Dallas as Charming Once Upon a Time Season 2 Episode 8 Into the Deep picture image

Ginnifer Goodwin as Snow White & Josh Dallas as Charming

I really liked how this episode blended the two narratives of the Enchanted Forest and Storybrooke. So everyone figures out that since Henry and Aurora were under the sleeping curse and their souls go to that red room when they sleep, Henry can give info to Aurora to get Snow and Emma home, or rather how to deal with Cora. However as Aurora and Henry try and converse the Enchanted forest crew is attacked.  Aurora is then kidnapped and Cora gives them a deadline to turn over the compass or it’s bye-bye Aurora. Snow gets the idea that if she can go into a deep enough sleep she can enter the red room to speak to Henry. So they go Poppy hunting.

However in Storybrooke, Regina and Charming see burns on Henry’s arm and Charming decides that HE should get cursed too since he KNOWs Snow will find a way there. The two soul mates reunite in a hellish prison. Anyway the way to stop Cora is the way they stopped Rumpelstiltskin way back in the Cinderella episode with squid ink. Rumpelstiltskin says there is some in his old prison cell.

Back in the forest, Hook frees Aurora but Hook is a no good double traitor and takes Aurora’s heart and gives it to Cora. This means Cora can control Aurora’s words and actions.
I enjoyed this episode but there is  a lot going on. I mean it’s better than that Frankenstein filler episode.  It also had a good cliff-hanger. Not too much I can say about this episode.

Esmeralda singing God Help the Outcast Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda singing God Help the Outcast Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

I’m not strictly speaking in the interest of my own personal enjoyment or in the sense that it would give me more context but with the political and social climate in America, Hollywood or Disney really should get a new version into production.

 

Esmeralda (Maureen O'Hara) 1939 Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda (Maureen O’Hara)

 

America right now is politically divided on many, many issues  and  a big one is the issue of immigration and refugees. In some ways it’s a complex issue mainly on the bureaucracy end  but on the side of basic human decency and the fact that America is an immigrant nation  it’s pretty simple. So how does this tie into making a Hunchback movie and the necessity of one?

Esmeralda Illustration Image picture

19th century Illustration of Esmeralda

I truly can not speak to the historical aspect of the Romani in Paris in the 15th century but the book makes it sound like Paris was a Sanctuary city. This means in a sense you could look at Esmeralda as a refugee or at the very least she is an immigrant of sorts. This is only case in versions where she is a Romani and not following the book, which is fine. I suppose they could split the different and make her half French and half Romani or Spanish since Esmeralda’s father is a complete unknown. The only hint the book offers, that I can find, is Esmeralda’s father could have been a thief that left her mother before she learned she was pregnant. Then again this information is narrated by a secondary character, so it unknown how reliable this account is.

    

Esmeralda and Quasimodo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda defying Frollo by helping Quasimodo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

In any case the two major American versions that have Esmeralda as a Romani depicts her as an advocate for both her people and the “downtrodden” which aside from being her a good female role-model in these two versions, her being an advocate  great aspect to showcase to a film going population.

 

Salma Hayek as Esmeralda, 1997 The Hunchback picture image

Salma Hayek as Esmeralda,

Also unlike some other movies that cast people regardless of their race, Hunchback should be a little more set in character’s cultural backgrounds. I heard when Rogue One was coming out there was a call to boycott the movie because of the diversity the cast, same for Star Wars The Force Awakens, which is dumb.   With Hunchback their cultural backgrounds inform the characters so aside from Esmeralda and in many cases Clopin, the rest of the cast are white Europeans which could help ease some people into the movie, especially people who wanted to boycott an iconic Space Fantasy movie series.

 

Gigi Radics picture image

Gigi Radics

This means the casting of Esmeralda become extremely important. I should preface that in a perfect world, anyone could play Esmeralda but we don’t and if a movie is going to characterized Esmeralda a very specific ethnic group even though the book did not, then the movie needs to cast accordingly. This is why the casting of Gigi Radics, a Hungarian singer of Romani descent would be a masterstroke of casting. Whether or not she is available or willing to play the role is a different question.  They could always cast an unknown Romani actress to take the part.  Casting an Indian or Pakistani, or Arab actress is not quite as authentic but it a step in the right direction.

 

Esmeralda singing God Help the Outcast Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda singing God Help the Outcast Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

A new Hunchback  movie today who help shed some light on the current situation in America and recontextualize to people who may not think it about as much and ignore the news. It might even help  people who have little exposure to immigrants and refugees  put a human face on the issue instead of short sound bite.

Becoming Jane picture image

Becoming Jane

Groans, just so many groans on this movie. When I first saw Becoming Jane  I didn’t have any strong opinions of it in fact I hardly remember it aside from it being about Jane Austen and her unrequited love. Apparently this movie exists to showcase where Jane Austen got her inspiration from but she isn’t Frida Kahlo, her movie narrative is much like her book sans the interest.

Anne Hathaway as Jane Austen & James McAvoy as Tom Lefroy Becoming Jane picture image

Anne Hathaway as Jane Austen & James McAvoy as Tom Lefroy

This movie is shot in  typical lovely manner. It pretty in the strict conventional way a period drama is shot especially for this time period. It’s pretty and boring. It does tries it’s hand interesting shots and edits which just look overindulgent. It looks as though a young director is trying to be artsy but in fact the director, Julien Jarrold, is quite experienced as a director.

Anne Hathaway as Jane Austen & James McAvoy as Tom Lefroy Becoming Jane picture image

Anne Hathaway as Jane Austen & James McAvoy as Tom Lefroy

Then there is the love story. Again it follows the pretty people who are pretty and passionate. Jane Austen and Tom Lefroy start off in typically Disney-esque snarky relationship turned forbidden love. Again the idea is in love is forbidden than an audience HAS to care the lovers. Alas no. There is no realy pivot from animosity to love. The just keep bumping into other Tom makes criticisms about Jane’s writings, telling her she needs experience.

Anne Hathaway as Jane Austen & James McAvoy as Tom Lefroy Becoming Jane picture image

Anne Hathaway as Jane Austen & James McAvoy as Tom Lefroy

Speaking on the scene where the first meet, Jane is reading something she wrote at her sister’s engagement and Lefroy is there. After she is done, Jane overhears him criticizing it  and she preceded to run upstair and tears it up and in the very next time they meet she is defending its worth and how ladies should write because they have feelings. It just seems odd that she is at one time vulnerable to a vague criticism of a guy she doesn’t know and then is all girl power. It’s confusing on her character since she mostly about female empowerment as she won’t marry for position. Go her? Did she even try to get to know the rich guy?   I guess she needed to feel passion that started with a guy saying she sucked at writing? Even though that is not what he said.  Or was it all his sexual talks with her through vague English politeness?             

Anne Hathaway as Jane Austen Becoming Jane picture image

Anne Hathaway as Jane Austen

    

What is really unfortunate is the casting. Anne Hathaway isn’t convincing. Aside from the  English accent, which did sound like an affectation, she didn’t give Jane anything that was interesting as a character. What was Jane Austen’s personality? Smart? Nice? Independent?  Those traits are presence in the film and darn if they aren’t in the dialogue of the movie to convey it, so no acting required.   

Anne Hathaway as Jane Austen & James McAvoy as Tom Lefroy Becoming Jane picture image

Anne Hathaway as Jane Austen & James McAvoy as Tom Lefroy

If you want to ogle James McAvoy for a long two hours then this is a movie for you. If you want a pretty movie with a less than compelling romantic narrative, again a movie for you. However if you want a good romantic movie set in the regency period that watch any other movie that is based on a Jane Austen book.  

Tallahassee

Jennifer Morrison as Emma Swan and Michael Raymond-James as Neal Cassidy Once Upon a Time Season 2 Episode 6Tallahassee picture image

Jennifer Morrison as Emma Swan and Michael Raymond-James as Neal Cassidy

Of all the magic dreamy places in the world, they pick Tallahassee as place for Emma and her boyfriend/baby daddy Neal to dream about, but I’m getting ahead of myself.

In this episode we learn about Emma’s relationship with a thief named Neal. They meet in that oh so cliche ways of Emma stealing the car he stole and thus they start a Bonnie and Clyde duo and fall in love. They decide to go straight and move to the randomly selected city of Tallahassee. However August shows up and convinces Neal to walk away from Emma because of the curse. Emma gets put in jail for aiding in one of Neal’s  crimes involving stolen watches, however Neal makes sure Emma gets the money from the stolen watches and the car that brought them together. Emma also learns she is pregnant.

The other story  at play in this episode involve Emma, Snow/Mary, Mulan, Aurora and Hook get the compass from the last Giant.  Only Emma and Hook scale the beanstalk while Aurora deal with her nightmares which you learn at the end Henry is sharing with her.

Overall, this episode was really engaging. Emma’s backstory was compelling especially when you factor in the lie she told Henry about his father in season 1.  Not a lot comment on in this episode, so far it’s been the best one so far that adds more to the overall narrative.   Well one this is that the Cgs still look bad.

Sorry for yet another video, personal life and stuff.

Just a few reactions of this video;
– I really do want to analyze Fleur-de-Lys’ costume. I haven’t sat down and REALLY thought about but I’m not sure how to feel about. Of course the costume I REALLY want to discuss is Frollo’s, I have some words for that one.

– I really like this Fleur-de-Lys, she has a lovely clear voice that is the perfect tonal foil to Tawaji’s voice,  Alyzée Lalande gets a solid A from me.

– Not sold on Martin Giroux as  Phoebus. Granted I haven’t gone through this cast with a fine tooth comb to really assess their performances but he just seems from this vid to be on the generic side. To be fair few Phoebus performer stand out so it could be the role.