Posts Tagged ‘Linus’


Screen Shot 2015-11-06 at 3.50.44 PMRichard’s CP24 reviews for Daniel Craig as James Bond in “Spectre,” the Charlie Brown reboot “The Peanuts Movie” and the Drew Barrymore cancer drama “Miss You Already.”

Watch the whole thing HERE!


Screen Shot 2015-11-06 at 10.11.18 AMRichard’s “Canada AM” reviews for Daniel Craig as James Bond in “Spectre,” the Charlie Brown reboot “The Peanuts Movie” and the Drew Barrymore cancer drama “Miss You Already.”

Watch the whole thing HERE!

THE PEANUTS MOVIE: 3 STARS. “confident reworking of Schulz’s beloved creations.”

Screen Shot 2015-11-02 at 10.43.14 AMThere’s not much going on story-wise in “The Peanuts Movie.” Like the comic strips that ran in newspapers for fifty years the plot is boiled down to its essence. In this case Charlie Brown is in love with the new girl in town. Add in some hijinks, a moral and faster than you can say, “Good grief, Charlie Brown,” you have an amiable update of the classic cartoon.

In this Paul Feig-produced movie the herky-jerky animation of the cartoons we grew up with is replaced with state of the art computer imagery but all the other familiar elements are comfortably in place. Vince Guaraldi’s jazzy piano score tinkles on the soundtrack, Linus’s blanket still provides security, Lucy’s has attitude and Charlie Brown is still a heaving mass of preadolescent insecurities.

When a new family moves in across the street from Charlie (Noah Schnapp) he is instantly smitten by his new neighbour, the Little Red-Haired Girl (Francesca Capaldi). “Maybe she won’t know about my imperfections,” says Charlie as he tries to figure out ways to impress her. Meanwhile Snoopy (Bill Melendez from original archival audio from the original television shows) has fantasy battles with the Red Baron for the affections of a pretty beagle named Fifi.

While Snoopy engages in aerial loop-de-loops to win Fifi’s love, Charlie Brown does some loopy stuff of his own. “Why is it everything I try turns out wrong?” he sighs. In the end, however, he learns that doing the right thing and showing compassion are more important than showing off for recognition.

For many people happiness will be a new look at Charles M. Schulz’s most famous creations. Feig and Steve “Horton Hears a Who!” Martino have been an extremely respectful to the source material, making a movie that feels like Schulz’s strip with a twenty-first century makeover.

The gentle humour of the TV specials is firmly in place—even a “wild” chase scene at a talent show is slow down to kid-friendly speed—as is the old-school values of the strip—project confidence, don’t slouch—but most importantly the spirit of the Charlie Brown remains intact. Schulz’s stories were always more about heart than actual plot and that is amply on display here but a shortage of story means the film occasionally feels padded out with Red Baron versus Snoopy sequences and music montages to reach the ninety minute mark.

Despite Charlie Brown’s myriad insecurities “The Peanuts Movie” is an extremely confident reworking of Schulz’s beloved creation.

Easter paints the silver screen! Hippity-hopping through great easter movies.

bjouttake1There are as many different kinds of Easter movies as there are colours on the most psychedelic Ukrainian Easter egg. From kid-friendly romps like Hop, Russell Brand’s cartoon about an errant Easter Bunny, to the rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar to all-singing-all-dancing spectaculars like Easter Parade to sword-and-sandal epics like Ben Hur and solemn retellings of the biblical Easter story like The Greatest Story Ever Told.

Then there are horror films like Easter Bunny, Kill Kill and the terrifying Easter Bunny from Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey… so many diverse takes on Easter, but since there’s no way to watch all these movies on Easter weekend, let’s hippity-hop through a list of the bunny’s greatest hits.

Controversial in its time—fundamentalist Bob Jones III denounced it as “blasphemy” without actually watching the film—Jesus of Nazareth, director Franco Zeffirelli’s epic 1977 mini-series, is now considered a classic. Clocking in at a whopping 382 minutes, it’s a reverent look at Jesus’s life from his birth to resurrection starring heavyweights like Laurence Olivier, Anthony Quinn, Anne Bancroft and Christopher Plummer.

From the sacred to the sublime, It’s the Easter Beagle, Charlie Brown continues Charles Schultz’s tradition of providing a story for every holiday, both secular and spiritual. The twelfth Peanuts cartoon special sees Linus try to hype up the arrival of the Easter Beagle but only Sally believes him. The rest of the gang is still unsure in light of Linus’s Great Pumpkin Halloween fiasco. This special, now available on DVD, features one of the only times Snoopy ever spoke on screen. He shouts “Hey!” before dancing with bunnies in a fantasy sequence.

Fred Astaire, the legendary song-and-dance-man was no stranger to holiday entertainment. His Christmas special, Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town, is a Yuletide favorite but he also appeared in no less than three Easter-themed movies and TV shows. Astaire’s movie, Holiday Inn, the 1942 story of a singer who turns his farm house into a dinner theatre on the holidays, is best known for introducing Bing Crosby’s White Christmas, but also produced the tune Easter Parade, which, six years later turned up in the hoofer’s film of the same name.

Finally, years later he played the narrator in the Rankin/Bass stop-motion animated The Easter Bunny’s Coming to Town. Set in Kidville, the most child-friendly place on earth, it is the story of how the Easter Bunny came to be.