Movie Week: ‘The “Charming” Christopher Robin’ and The Very True ‘Crazy Rich Asians’

15 Aug

Christopher Robin

I took too long to see Christopher Robin. Listening to critics and family members who no longer appreciate movies that aren’t action-packed, I waited off on seeing this movie, feeling it wasn’t pressing. After seeing it today, I fully regret not contributing to its box office weekend count.

The story follows Christopher Robin from the Winnie the Pooh series as he transitions from child to adult. As he traverses through his adulthood, he slowly loses his boy-like wonder and playfulness, overwhelmed by the daily struggles of trying to make sure he keeps a stable family life. Eventually though, he manages to run back into Winnie the Pooh, the lovable bear he grew up with, as Pooh looks to Christopher to help him find his lost friends. This encounter allows him to get in touch with his childhood once again.

Question for all you adult viewers: Did you ever find an old toy or drawing you had as child? Did it make you feel excited? Did it make you laugh and smile? If you have, then you can relate to this story focused on renewing your childhood.

Though the story is kind of predictable, it’s predictable in a good sort of way. It isn’t more than I would expect it to be, and that’s what makes it so charming. Some people were taken aback by how gloomy and ruddy most of the scenes were because their original memories of the animated Winnie the Pooh were so colorful. But actually, I felt that this appearance felt more true to the original book series and felt more authentic. Some people also felt that seeing the characters from Winnie the Pooh enter London made them smaller than life rather than big important characters as some perceived they were in the animated series and movies and such.

But I guess I’ve been playing Kingdom Hearts enough to get used to the characters feeling rather small…

In any case, I never should’ve listened to the naysayers. At the same time, it was the naysayers that lowered my expectations so that I could come into the movie with a fresh mind.

A little backstory on the movie: It was said that Christopher Robin the movie was based off of the author’s son Christopher Robin Milne. In fact, Christopher Robin in the Winnie the Pooh series itself was based off of the real son of the author. But the author’s son had an estranged relationship with his father, similarly to the Christopher Robin in the movie. He hated that his father used him for the books. I don’t think he liked the fame and attention. The real Christopher Robin’s life was also very similar, if not almost exact, to the story developed for the movie. With, of course, a happier ending.

According to Wikipedia:

Christopher Robin Milne was born at 11 Mallord Street, Chelsea, London, at 8 am on 21 August 1920, to author Alan Alexander Milneand Dorothy (née de Sélincourt) Milne. Milne speculates that he was an only child because “he had been a long time coming.” From an early age Milne was cared for by his nanny, Olive Brockwell, for over 8 years until May 1930, when he entered boarding school. Milne called her “Nou”, and stated “Apart from her fortnight‘s holiday every September we had not been out of each other’s sight for more than a few hours at a time”, and “we lived together in a large nursery on the top floor.”[1]:19,21,55,97,104

Milne’s father explained that Rosemary was the intended name for their first born, if a girl. Realizing it was to be a boy, A.A. decided upon Billy, without the intention of christening him William. Instead, each parent chose a name, hence Christopher Robin, his formal name until 1928. Yet, from 1925 onwards, he was referred to within the family as Moon, which was Christopher Milne’s pronunciation of Milne. From 1929 onwards, he was referred to simply as Christopher, and as he states, it was “The only name I feel to be really mine.”

The real stuffed toys owned by Christopher Robin Milne and featured in the Winnie-the-Pooh stories. They have been on display in the New York Public Library in New York City since 1987. According to the New York Public Library’s web site, the items have been on display in the Children’s Center at 42d Street, in the “main branch” of the library (the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building at Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street) since early 2009.

At his first birthday, Milne received an Alpha Farnell teddy bear, which he later named Edward. This bear, along with a real Canadian bear named “Winnipeg” that Milne saw at London Zoo,[3][4] eventually became the inspiration for the Winnie-the-Pooh character.

Milne spoke self-deprecatingly of his own intellect, “I may have been on the dim side”, or “not very bright.” He also described himself as being “good with his hands”, and possessing a Meccano set. His self descriptions included “girlish”, since he had long hair and wore “girlish clothes”, and being “very shy and “un-self-possessed.”

An early childhood friend was Anne Darlington, also an only child, who as Milne described it, was for his parents “the Rosemary that I wasn’t.” In fact Milne’s mother hoped they would marry one day, hopes she abandoned when Milne turned 25.

In 1925, Milne’s father bought Cotchford Farm, near Ashdown Forest in East Sussex. Though still living in London, the family would spend weekends, Easter and summer holidays there. As Milne described it, “So there we were in 1925 with a cottage, a little bit of garden, a lot of jungle, two fields, a river and then all the green, hilly countryside beyond, meadows and woods, waiting to be explored.” The place became the inspiration for fiction, with Milne stating “Gill’s Lap that inspired Galleon’s Lap, the group of pine trees on the other side of the main road that became the Six Pine Trees, the bridge over the river at Posingford that became Pooh-sticks Bridge,” and a nearby “ancient walnut tree” became Pooh’s House. His toys, Pooh, EeyorePiglet, plus two invented characters, Owl and Rabbit, came to life through Milne and his mother, to the point where his father could write stories about them. Kanga and Tigger were later presents from his parents.

Of this time, Milne states, “I loved my Nanny, I loved Cotchford. I also quite liked being Christopher Robin and being famous.”

When his nanny departed when he was aged nine, Milne’s relationship with his father grew. As he put it, “For nearly ten years I had clung to Nanny. For nearly ten more years I was to cling to him, adoring him as I had adored Nanny, so that he too became almost a part of me…”

When Milne eventually wrote his memoirs, he dedicated them to Olive Brockwell, “Alice to millions, but Nou to me”.

Of his time at boarding school, Milne says, “For it was now that began that love-hate relationship with my fictional namesake that has continued to this day.”

In 1941, during World War II, Milne left his studies to join the army, but initially failed the medical examination. His father used his influence to help get Milne a position as a sapper in the Royal Engineers. After the war, he returned to Cambridge and completed a degree in English literature.[5]:13–21,104,116–118

On 11 April 1948, Milne became engaged to Lesley de Sélincourt, a cousin on his mother’s side, and they married on 24 July 1948. In 1951, he and his wife moved to Dartmouth and started the Harbour Bookshop on 25 August. This turned out to be a success, although his mother had thought the decision odd, as Milne did not seem to like “business”, and as a bookseller he would regularly have to meet Pooh fans.[1]:167–168[5]:107,129–133,147

Milne occasionally visited his father when the elder Milne became ill. After his father died, Milne never returned to Cotchford Farm. His mother eventually sold the farm and moved back to London, after disposing of his father’s personal possessions. Milne, who, didn’t want any part of his father’s royalties, decided to write a book about his childhood. As Milne describes it, that book, The Enchanted Places, “…combined to lift me from under the shadow of my father and of Christopher Robin, and to my surprise and pleasure I found myself standing beside them in the sunshine able to look them both in the eye.”[5]

Following her husband’s death, Dorothy Milne had little further contact with her son, did not see him during the last 15 years of her life, and refused to see him on her deathbed.[6][7]

A few months after his father’s death in 1956, Milne’s daughter Clare was born and diagnosed with severe cerebral palsy.

Milne gave the original stuffed animals that inspired the Pooh characters to the books’ editor, who in turn donated them to the New York Public Library; Marjorie Taylor (in her book Imaginary Companions and the Children Who Create Them) recounts how many were disappointed at this, and Milne had to explain that he preferred to concentrate on the things that currently interested him.[8] He disliked the idea of Winnie-the-Pooh being commercialised.

Despite the fact that many people felt the movie was a much dimmer or bleaker view of the Pooh series, the original story was far more grim and didn’t have quite the same feel-good ending. I think they kept as close to the original Christopher as they could and changed some things to make it relate well to the audience. It ended the way most of us would’ve wanted the real Christopher’s life to end.

Initially, I was going to write this story off as a Hook-alike, but it’s so much deeper than a re-telling of a classic. It’s really an awakening. This story had substance, stuck to its source, and inspired me to peer closer into the Pooh series and appreciate it. It made me do more research about the characters and story. Really, it made me deeply fall in love with the old classic. It was simply charming and heartwarming.

Besides, I can’t resist British films or films located in foreign countries, teddy bears, Disney movies, and sprinklets of history. I might be the only one who appreciates family tales like this anymore. I give this a 10/10. This movie might not be for everyone. It’s family-friendly, but it has a slower-paced story than the action-thriller movies most people are accustomed to seeing nowadays.

If you like this movie, I also recommend Paddington Bear.

 

Crazy Rich Asians

Finally, a movie with an all-Asian cast that doesn’t follow a Kung Fu, Taekwondo, or Karate story-line. Finally, a hot Asian man plays the lead character (though he’s been said to be mixed…).

There are so many reasons I’m grateful for this movie. We hardly get any Hollywood movies portraying Asian-Americans in any other roles but lame dorks or fighting masters.

On the story side, if you’re accustomed to watching Asian dramas, this movie might be a little predictable. Really, if you’re used to movies about fancy rich guys marrying down their class, you’ll find this movie to move along exactly the way you expect it too.

On the other hand, as much as the concept is common, they pull it off in such a stylish way and sprinkle it with different surprises, it feels a little different. Maybe it’s the Asian cultural pieces that make this movie stand out. It certainly makes itself distinct from just being any old movie about “rich people”. They are rich “ASIANS”.

This isn’t to say I don’t have my criticisms. There were many things left out of the movie that I felt would’ve added to the story (but then maybe it would’ve made the movie feel too cluttered…). Perhaps those things will come in a sequel (if this movie does well enough to get the “green light” for a sequel).

I also felt that one of the final scenes with the lead female and the lead male’s mother was actually unnecessary by the time it occurred and should’ve occurred much sooner. But I understand it was needed to show us (the viewers) the character’s resolve. It was a scene that was basically showing the character’s new-found strengths and courage.

Still, it seems like the writer was trying to depict the character in the scene as the one taking the “high moral ground”, but because of the timing, the scene just felt like a manipulative attempt to make the lead male character’s mother change her mind…

It would’ve been different if she’d have told the audience in some way that she had a clever idea to change his mother’s mind. Instead, it felt more like she was trying to preach to his mother about how bad she’d been acting, but chose a time when it didn’t really matter…until the end. Her actions felt a little more manipulative than “brave”. I felt the scene would’ve made more of an impact much sooner. By the time the scene occurred, it gave a “Are you happy now?” sort of feeling. Kind of like she was playing a psychological game with the lead character’s mother but told none of us about it in her behavior or attitude.

Other than that, this movie was fun, stylish, and romantic. I haven’t seen a romantic movie in theaters in such a long time, so it was sort of nice to watch a different sort of genre.

The biggest draw to me about this movie is that it aims to tell the truth about Asian families, especially Asians from respected families. I use the term “respected” because these incidences don’t just happen commonly among the wealthy Asians. I’ve heard many, many scary stories about men and women meeting their partner’s Asian parents and not feeling like they measure up.

Unfortunately, it appears the things that happened in this movie aren’t just dramatic tellings of the Asian parent-meeting experience. The issues found in this movie happen to REAL couples who are trying to bridge gaps between themselves and one or more Asian parents. This is especially common with Asian parents who aren’t from a western country.

The average person who watches this movie may think this is just an Asian cliche story (or rather a cliche period), but it really goes down like this in some families. Knowing that, all the drama in the movie made even more of an impact on my viewing experience. I’m not even Asian American. But if I were, how would I deal?

Overall, I think this was a good entertaining watch. I recommend it. I give it a 9/10.

A Bratz Fan’s Opinions on Tree Change Dolls

14 Aug

As requested by a listener, I am going to spill out my opinions on Tree Change dolls, a line of dolls known for deconstructing Bratz dolls so that the dolls look more like little girls. As a doll collector and a major Bratz fan, I have a mouthful to say about these dolls. So, just sit back, hear me out, and sip your tea…

Leave me a comment and let me know what you think about the Tree Change dolls!

For my readers, I’m sorry I’ve mostly been doing videos lately. BUT I haven’t neglected this blog. In fact, I have a HUGE, HUGE post coming up. I’ve been working on it for two years. So, don’t worry. Things will liven up on here soon.

KPOP: 26 Things New or Casual Fans May Not Know About the ‘Crazy Popular’ Kpop Industry

11 Aug

Want to know all of the crazy tidbits that come with the Kpop Industry? I have here an updated article on 26 things new Kpop fans might not know about the Kpop industry! Check it out!

Generation Next

hRyBhrIPxbNFdkTuAWLo

Kpop has become a huge phenomenon within the last decade and is still popular now. It is considered the “secret music society” of this generation. It has its own close-knit community and is prized because it seems to reflect pure South Korean culture in a modern way. South Korean officials call it Korea’s “soft power”.

This is all a result of the Hallyu Wave. <—Read More About It Here

Most international Kpop fans get into the genre because of the catchy songs, the perfect dance moves, and the myriads of attractive men and women involved. They may also like the innocence and “purity” of the music and music videos. After all, you will hardly see or hear outright violence and/or explicit sex in their songs or videos. To outsiders, these groups seem like the perfect packaged artists. For those people looking for more substance, Kpop groups may turn you…

View original post 34,072 more words

#Bratz 2018: So, What Happened to the Bratz? Why Did They Go Away? Why Did They Change?

5 Aug

Watch my video spilling the tea about the Bratz dolls! Just a little history on them. I’m not trying to drag them too much because I love these dolls! This just seems like a frequently asked Bratz question and I wanted to answer it.

#Bratz 2018: The Ultimate Bratz Test-How Well Do You Think You Know the Bratz?

4 Aug

Inspired from my Bratz Quiz! If you haven’t taken it on this blog, do you think you can handle all 44 questions on this video with just 10 seconds to answer each question? Give it a shot and have fun!

And support the Bratz girls’ return by sharing #Bratz on social media and buying the Collectors’ Dolls released this fall!

Keep up with sneak peeks at:

https://www.instagram.com/officialbratz/?hl=en

https://www.instagram.com/hayden_williams/?hl=en

https://www.facebook.com/Soragennext/

Gallery

How Well Do You Know the Bratz? Quiz

28 Jul

Bratz Quiz has been updated! Can you answer all of the questions correctly?

Generation Next

The Bratz have returned to the scene this year, and it brought me back down memory lane. I have been going back through my lovely Bratz memories, my amazing doll years.

In honor of the Bratz return, I’ve done a little review: Bratz Are Back Again in 2015: What Happened to the Bratz?

I’ve also been down memory lane before: Memory Lane: Bratz as Popstars and Rockstars

I had Bratz when I was a tween. We didn’t have the generic toys, you know, the princesses and baby dolls. We had cool, hipster toys.

I used to be a super huge fan of Bratz. I was one of the more fortunate individuals because I had my own computer back then. I would look up everything regarding Bratz. And I mean everything!

I actually learned about Bratz before their debut. I remember when their website was under construction. At first, I thought…

View original post 2,410 more words

What Does He Want You To See in Him? By the signs (Masculine Identity)

19 Jul

Update complete. How do men want women to see them? Look at Mars and find out!

Generation Next

Mars Symbol Small

If you don’t understand much about zodiac signs and you are new to planetary signs, aspects, and houses, read the introduction here.

Mars is the planet of war, aggression, drive, assertion, energy, force, the sex drive, and male sexuality. He represents how we express our passionate natures and how we obtain anything we desire. Mars also represents drive, energy, and freedom. Mars is instinctive about survival. It can also represent frustration and aggression. Mars wants us to compete, to fight, and to climb over obstacles in life. He wants to accomplish something and be independent. He thrives on the rush of the moment. Really, he just wants to release some tension.

The sign he enters shows HOW we express our passion and drive. The house he enters shows WHERE we express our passion and drive. The aspects show how difficult or easy it is to use his energies in…

View original post 9,552 more words

What Does She Want YOU to See in HER? By the signs (Feminine Identity)

19 Jul

Update Complete.

Generation Next

Venus sign Venus-the planet of love and beauty

If you don’t understand much about zodiac signs and you are new to planetary signs, aspects, and houses, read the introduction here.

Venus is the planet of love, beauty, pleasure, justice, sex (aphrodisiacs and arousal), and peace. It is an air planet. It’s associated with the Greek goddess Aphrodite. Venus wants us to live a pleasant life of ease. She represents all we appreciate and adore. The sign she enters shows HOW we express our love, adoration, and appreciation. The house she enters shows WHERE we express this love, adoration, and appreciation. The aspects show us how difficult or easy it is to use her energies in our lives and how much of it we use as a result.

Ever heard of the saying, “Men are From Mars, Women are from Venus”?

Men-Mars-Women-Venus-Cover

In a woman’s chart, Venus is her ruler, while men are…

View original post 18,923 more words

#Bratz2018: What I Want to See Back and What I Don’t

14 Jul

Now I’ve added videos inspired from this article! If you don’t like reading, give them a listen instead! #Bratz 2018 “Dos and Don’ts!”

Generation Next

Greetings GenNext readers!

I am excited that Bratz are coming back this Fall! WOO! It’s really happening. We’ve been getting a few teasers on instagram that confirm it’s really happening. And of course, I have a few surprises up my sleeve to support the Bratz dolls’ return!

Ever since I started that 2018 article regarding Isaac Larian announcing the Bratz dolls’ return, I’ve been really thinking about the Bratz dolls’ career over the last 17 years. I’ve been reviewing pictures, my dolls, Bratz music, and even press interviews and such, just walking down memory lane. There was a lot about Bratz that just blew me away within that time!

I believe I’ve told people on my Bratz Quiz (How Well Do You Know the Bratz?) article a few years back that I’ve been into the Bratz since the website was under construction late 2000, early 2001-ish. So, I’ve seen…

View original post 4,007 more words

Kingdom Hearts Orchestra Event @ Chicago’s Auditorium Theatre + NEW Kingdom Hearts 3 Toy Story Content!

14 Jul

Updates on the Kingdom Hearts event in Chicago!

Generation Next

I attended the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra World Tour Event this weekend!

If you haven’t attended the Orchestra event yet, and you’re a SERIOUS Kingdom Hearts fan, you still have plenty of chances to go.

I won’t give too much away. But I encourage all of you fans to attend the event if you can.

If you can’t afford to go, I will tell you that I believe all the trailers will be released after the last tour in October. Last year, the Orchestra gave us more footage from Hercules and the trailer was released afterwards.

We were not allowed to film, and I respect Tetsuya Nomura’s wishes because I want this event to to sell well.

But in case you can’t make Chicago’s event, and you’re curious about the exclusive content, just know there was exclusive Kingdom Hearts 3 footage from Toy Story at the one in Chicago! We also…

View original post 367 more words

%d bloggers like this: