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Posts Tagged ‘Tom Hanks’

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Let’s go fly a kite
Up to the highest height!
Let’s go fly a kite and send it soaring
Up through the atmosphere
Up where the air is clear
Oh, let’s go fly a kite!

–Let’s Go Fly a Kite, Richard and Robert Sherman

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I thought it might be time start showing some work from my upcoming solo show, From a Distance, that opens July 15 at the West End Gallery in Corning. There are definitely different takes on a variety of themes in this show so deciding which piece should kick off the process was tough. But given the many current events– or should I say disasters?– taking place in this country, I thought the painting here at the top would be a gentle starter.

The idea of flying a kite seems so much more preferable than going into the closet and screaming into the darkness.

The title of this piece is Let’s Go Fly a Kite, borrowed, of course, from the song of that name from the 1964 Walt Disney film, Mary Poppins. It’s a wonderful song that aptly captures the idea of putting aside your problems and releasing yourself to soar with your kite high above and far removed from worldly problems. I hope that is what one gets from this piece, whose image is sized at 10″ by 16″ and framed and matted at 16″ by 22″.

I never saw Mary Poppins as a kid nor did I read the books. I came to both in middle age, actually. But even so, the magic of both remained intact.  a few years back I came across a large single volume that contained all of author  P.L. TraversMary Poppins books and decided that it might be worth reading. I am glad I did. It was funny and touching and engaging on many levels. Just a great read. Made me regret not being interested in them as a kid.

I thought I would share the song here but decided to not show the one from the film. Instead, I am taking the version from another Disney film, Saving Mr. Banks. This film, starring Emma Thompson as author P.L. Travers and Tom Hanks as Walt Disney, is the story of how Disney wooed the crusty Travers who was dead set against him making her book into a movie. She steadfastly opposed every and any change to her baby and thought the idea of a Disney musical treatment of her story was beyond the pale.

This version comes at a point in the Saving Mr. Banks film where she is near making a decision to withhold the filming rights from Disney. She is called into the work studio of the Sherman Brothers, the legendary songwriting team that wrote  many of the best known Disney tunes along with scores of other songs for other artists. Up to this point, Travers has been disdainful of their work that they have previously presented her for the film and in a final attempt to sway her, they perform the song Let’s Go Fly a Kite for her.

It’s a lovely turning point in the film and a nice version of the song as well. So, for a while at least, put aside thoughts of pandemics, of racial divides, of a treasonous and derelict president and all the other horrors that come as part and parcel of the current apocalypse, and think about the giddy thrill of watching your kite take to the air.

Soar with it for a bit. Or a little longer, if need be.

 

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Thought today deserved a lighter touch.  As I’ve  said here, I’ve always been a big fan of the movies, enjoying most aspects of the crafting of them from their direction to the cinematography of the films to the acting that takes place.  One aspect that I’ve always enjoyed is the movie trailer, a condensed version of the film that gives a preview of the film without really giving away the entire story.  Well, ideally.  There is a real art and rhythm to the best movie trailers that really jumpstarts a movie to life, sometimes coming off far better than the actual film. 

The modern movie trailer has become a different sort of animal than the older trailers that used to more gently promote the film with a genial sort of hyperbole.  Today’s movie trailers are often way over the top, with volume turned up to eleven (for you Spinal Tap fans out there) and enough fast paced scene changes to induce epileptic seizures.  I’m not so much a fan of these. 

After this years Oscar awards, comic Jimmy Kimmel  had a special version of his late-night talk show and on it he unveiled the trailer for his film, MOVIE: The Movie.  It combines every modern stereotypical movie genres into one gargantuan film that feature the willing participation of some of filmdom’s biggest stars such as Meryl Streep, George Clooney and Tom Hanks, to name just a few.  Oh, and Matt Damon, as shown at the top here.

Anyway, if you enjoy movie trailers, you might get a chuckle from this epic (?) production.

 

 

 

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HBO starts a new series tonight that I’ve been anticipating for a while now.  The Pacific is a 10-part series that follows the path of several soldiers as they fight in the Pacific theatre of World War II

It’s in the same vein as Band of Brothers, which  was set in WW II Europe, and set the standard for films of the sort with it’s fast paced action and dynamic camera work that gave one a true sense of the danger and the brutal reality of the situation.  The Pacific is produced by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks who also produced Band of Brothers.  They wanted to honor the soldiers who fought in the Pacific by giving their stories the same careful treatment in the telling that they did with Band of Brothers.

I doubt that anyone will be greatly disappointed. 

When I saw the image above I was instantly hit with the feeling that one gets from looking at one of the nightmare landscapes of Hieronymous Bosch which I suppose is only fitting.  I can’t fully imagine what it must have taken to persevere through the extreme hardships of the  campaigns on those islands.   It must have literally felt like hell on earth , a neverending carousel of horror and terror.  Those who survived deserve every honor they received and more.

They certainly have my respect…

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