Sunday, July 21, 2013

Tripping out on Turbo!


Wow!  This is definitely a month of movie reviews!  All the family movies we were expecting to be showered with in the summer all came in like a massive hurricane as soon as school started.

On our plate today:  Escargo!  Oh wait... TURBO! 
It's a tiny player compared to the bigness of Monsters University and Despicable Me 2.  Save for the usual trailer, Dreamworks didn't put much fanfare to this flick.  There's not even a single spot of merchandise at the cinema door.

That's why it was so cool to realize that this movie is actually awesome!

Admittedly, I was skeptical at first.  It reeked so much of Disney Pixar's Cars.  You know, downtrodden town (in this case, mall) gets back on the map, thanks to a race car (in this case, race snail) but not before said race car (in this case, race snail) gets arrested (in this case, snailnapped), and then taken in by a misfit band of town cars (in this case, misfit --yet badass-- snails) and given the blind support of a broken-down tow truck (in this case, a very broke taco guy).

But you know what, Turbo has more heart than Cars.  That's because it's an underdog story.  It's a rising against the norm story.  It's a brotherhood story nicely played by snails Chet and Theo --and their human counterparts, Angelo and Tito.  And it's a reality story where your biggest hero can be your biggest enemy.  My kids loved that twist!
Speaking of twists, the best line in the movie ironically came from said hero/archenemy.  'No dream is too big and no dreamer is too small.'  Imagine that!

Turbo is solid with the right amount of moral lesson and breathtaking action.  The incredible snail attachments got my boys geeking out, too.  They might just gear up our dogs with rocket boosters soon.  Uh-oh.

Starring Ryan Reynolds as Turbo and Paul Giamatti as Chet (my favorite character.  haha!).  TURBO --don't miss it.  Seriously.  Because this snail is fast!

Yep, it's my boys' favorite song right now.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Despicable Me 2: The Love Angle

Aaand they're back!  This time, with an unexpected twist.

We should've seen this coming though.  Villainous overlord to a gazillion minions turned doting dad to three bubbly little girls.  The logical sequel is to reward this reformed sinister being with --ding-ding-ding-- a love interest!  And so that is what Despicable Me 2 is in a nutshell.  A love story.  With a generous spattering of gadgets, evil potions, and maniacal world domincation plotting on the side.

Steve Carell still mans the vocal power of Gru, a retired evil dude who got recruited to be a good guy spy in this latest Universal Pictures film treat.  And the one who mans (or womans... er...) Gru's heart is his lovestruck fangirl, spy partner, Lucy. 

The love bug proves to be contagious as it goes PG level when Margo goes into puppy love mode with Antonio, the contravida El Macho's son.

Speaking of which, El Macho proves to be a lovable baddie, too.  He's so funny, it's cute!  And he dances a mean tango.

And, if you fell in love with Gru's adorable and ultra hilarious yellow minions in part 1, you'll definitely relive the feels for them as purple World War Z zombies in part 2. 

The boys and I were ecstatic that the minions were given more purpose in this movie.  They're not just a comic relief or a running joke as they used to be.  They are, in fact, the essential movers of the plot itself.  Despicable Minions.  Hehe.  I just had to.

No wonder they were given the well-deserved spotlight in the teaser trailer that ran and went successfully viral months before the movie release. 
Don't tell me you didn't love THAT? 

If the family is in for a little love and laughter, take them on a date to Despicable Me  Po-ta-TWO-oh-oooh!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

How to pull off a little BIG school party

Hosting a school party for pre-teens can be the scariest thing.  These kids are on the brink of teenhood --moody, highly opinionated, and judgmental (lol!).  It's even scarier when the party you're hosting is for your boy's 12th birthday, and he's all, "I don't want a kiddie party, mimi.  Just something simple but awesome.  Like I won't get embarrassed or anything..."

Solution:  GO BIG!  Without breaking the bank.

Go big on food.  You can never go wrong with pizza.  But why stop there?  Get the biggest thing in pizzas.  Say, Jugno's Monster Pizza.  I went with kid-friendly flavors but went the whole 20 and 36-inch goodness.  The kids were all "Wow!", "That's huge!", "Awesome!"
A tip:  Get them pre-sliced into squares for that no-hassle, easy distribution.

Go big on the cake.  I went with cupcakes --again, for that no-hassle, less messy distribution.  For the design, I went with the biggest thing in gaming:  Teen Fortress 2.  And the biggest thing in themed cakes:  Midnight Snacks.

Midnight Snacks rock the character cake-making department, like, so hard!  Can you just look at these details?  The kids were geeking out the whole time!  I heard a lot of "That's Pyro!", "This is so cool!", "Whoa!  TF2!!!"  And the cupcakes were in choco banana flavor.  Another win!  This time, in the taste department!

Of course, you want to be the bigger party planner for the teachers, too.  So even with a shooting video game theme, you DO NOT put guns in your design; and you DO NOT serve soda with your pizza.  Good, good mommy. :)

The best part is watching my boy, Miro, from afar --beaming like the sun as he munched on a cheese pizza alternating with a badge cupcake (He didn't have the heart to eat his favorite TF2 characters, lmao!) as his classmates went on thanking him and telling him how cool his little party is.

All in all, I spent less than Php4,000 for this success.  A small price to pay to hear your preteen say, "That was the best birthday ever, mimi!"
Hear that?  That's MY birthday wish coming true. :)

Disclaimer:  This blog does not aim to push TF2 to preteens.  The point of this blog is to push party planning bigness without spending big.  Feel free to theme your child's party to what he or she feels is 'big' for him or her.