Saw a Takashi Miike picture called The Great Yokai War. "Yokai" is a Japanese term for monsters from folklore, as opposed to the more familiar kaiju. It's a kids' picture, about a young boy from Tokyo sent out to live in the countryside with his older sister and his intermittently senile grandfather. When a vengeful spirit appears, the boy gets caught up in a war between warring groups of yokai and must find his courage to become the "Kirin Rider", the hero who will set everything to rights. It's not a bad picture - nothing deep, but an amusing story. Some of the yokai are really trippy, Japanese folklore can get pretty "out there", apparently.

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I saw Tom & Jerry.

I hated it.

I love the Tom & Jerry cartoon shorts -- that is, the old ones done by Joe Hanna and Bill Barbera for MGM. (The ones after that, not so much, not even the ones by Chuck Jones. But I digress.) The feature-length movie does capture their spirit, and the blend of 2D animation with live-action footage is competently done. The movie creates a world in which cartoon animals -- and not just Tom and Jerry -- co-exist with flesh-and-blood humans, and that's okay.

What irked me was the story this movie is hung on. Tom, Jerry and a young lady named Kayla come to New York to seek their fortune. Fine. Tom sets up in Central Park as a blind piano player seeking tips, and Jerry screws it up for him, as Jerry tends to do, and the chase is on. 

It so happens that there's a celebrity wedding happening in a few days at The Royal Gate, the most prestigious hotel in all of New York, an event on the level of royal nuptials, featuring society stars Preeta and Ben, who each bring along their pets, Tootles the cat and Spike the dog. The hotel is hiring temporary staffing for the occasion, and Kayla gets a job ... 

...by lying to the top applicant who has boatloads of experience in high-end hotels, stealing her resume and passing it off as her own. Kayla is assigned as an assistant to the events manager, Terrence, who is mortified to learn Jerry has taken residence; the scandal of having a mouse around would destroy The Royal Gate. Kayla recommends hiring Tom (he even gets a bellman's cap and a name tag), and hilarity ensues -- and by that I mean mayhem and destruction as Tom chases Jerry and Spike chases Tom all over the lobby, breaking the furniture and even the skylight..

An apoplectic Terrence complains to the hotel general manager that the wreckage in the lobby is, at heart, Kayla's fault, as she has failed in her mission. For his pains, he is fired and Kayla gets put in charge of the wedding. She makes a deal with Tom and Jerry to tour the city on the day of the wedding, but contrivances happen to put them there anyway, and more hilarity ensues -- and by that I mean more mayhem and destruction and even the breakup of Preeta and Ben.

A contrite Kayla moves to save the day, dispatching Tom and Jerry to catch Preeta before she gets to the airport and arranging a more modest wedding in Central Park.

We are supposed to relate to Kayla as a plucky girl who just needs a chance to shine, and not see her as a lying, conniving liar who cheated one person out of her rightful opportunity and got a longtime hotel employee fired, whose only qualification for anything is being a cute blonde.  For a movie to send that message in this day and age is reprehensible.

So no, I didn't like Tom & Jerry.

It's Good Friday, which means it's time for my annual double feature of The Passion of the Christ and The Life of Brian.

I'm leaning towards watching my BluRay of Jesus Christ Superstar.

The Baron said:

It's Good Friday, which means it's time for my annual double feature of The Passion of the Christ and The Life of Brian.

Never seen that.

Richard Willis said:

I'm leaning towards watching my BluRay of Jesus Christ Superstar.

The Baron said:

It's Good Friday, which means it's time for my annual double feature of The Passion of the Christ and The Life of Brian.

I first saw Jesus Christ Superstar on stage in London U.K. in 1972 during my first visit to my uncles, aunts and cousins. After twenty years in the U.S. my mother's oldest brother had died (during the postal/telephone strike). After the funeral was missed, my mother really wanted to see everyone. All of my relatives are in the U.K.

The movie version is also excellent, IMO. I was a little disappointed in the Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert, the TV production from three years ago. There are a couple of points where some visions are needed to be projected for the audience and the TV production didn't even try.

I would recommend the movie or stage show to anyone who would like to see the events through the eyes of the people who were there at the time and its politics. You don't have to be religious but it really shouldn't offend anyone who is religious.

"...it really shouldn't offend anyone who is religious."

Oh, really?

I'm not religious and I have the soundtrack on CD. 

(It's got some great songs on it.) 

I have every confidence that my father would have found something to object to in it.

Jeff of Earth-J said:

"...it really shouldn't offend anyone who is religious."

Oh, really?

I'm not religious and I have the soundtrack on CD. 

(It's got some great songs on it.) 

My mother was pretty religious and it didn't bother her a bit.

I saw Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert, the TV production from three years ago, and liked it a lot. I watched it again when PBS re-ran it last year. I haven't seen any live stage versions, and only saw part of the movie one time. 

I think the networks have lost interest in doing the live musical theater productions; the previously announced Young Frankenstein Live! hasn't materialized, and Dr. Seuss' The Grinch Musical Live! was, in a word, terrible. 

Here's Entertainment Just Once a Month's rankings of such productions: "Every Live Musical, Ranked"

Here's an alternate ranking from Best Life, which includes a couple that shouldn't be listed because they were musicals, but they weren't live: "Ranking Every Broadcast TV Musical Since 2013, From Worst to Best"

Same here, Richard. I've seen it once and really don't remember if I liked it or not.

Richard Willis said:

My mother was pretty religious and it didn't bother her a bit.

GODZILLA VS. KONG: Am I the first on the board to see a new blockbuster? (Usually I'm the last.) This one was pure fantasy... and I mean that in the best way possible. The movie takes one of the oldest (and most easily disproven) fantasy tropes ever and made me want to believe it. I can wait until someone wants to start a thread to discuss it further; I just don't have it in me.

I'm glad it was good.  No idea when I'll get to see it, though.

Jeff of Earth-J said:

GODZILLA VS. KONG: Am I the first on the board to see a new blockbuster? (Usually I'm the last.) This one was pure fantasy... and I mean that in the best way possible. The movie takes one of the oldest 9and most easily disproven) fantasy tropes ever and made me want to believe it. I can wait until someone wants to start a thread to discuss it further; I just don't have it in me.

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