Archive | December, 2013

What Your Favorite Attraction Says About You

20 Dec

We all have them, those rides and shows at the Disney parks that you just cannot miss. You might even visit the attraction twice (or three or four times) in one outing, and you consider neglecting parades and fireworks just to get a shorter wait time. Here’s what your favorite WDW attraction says about you:

Haunted Mansion: You’re a fan of dark humor. You enjoy Tim Burton films and would love if Danny Elfman composed the score to your life.

The Enchanted Tiki Room: You’re a D23er, DVC member, annual passholder or any combination thereof. You really, REALLY love classic Disney trivia, and you have no problem proudly displaying your knowledge like the countless limited-edition pins hanging around your neck.

Splash Mountain: You like to have a good time, but let’s not get too crazy. You’re adventurous, but you like to keep the adventure contained. One 50-foot drop is enough for you, and Brer Rabbit’s story is one you really enjoy.

Toy Story Midway Mania: You thrive off competition. You enjoy competition so much that you’re comfortable waiting 75-80 minutes in the queue. If you snagged Fastpasses for Midway, you probably got to Hollywood Studios at park opening, ran to Fastpass distribution, and competed with hundreds of other people in line to snag a coveted Midway Fastpass. The person you ride with suddenly goes from friend to foe as soon as you tug on your machine. Easy there, tiger.

Jungle Cruise: You read the jokes off of Laffy Taffy wrappers and laugh. You’re snarky, sarcastic, and quick-witted. You take very little seriously and look for opportunities for puns wherever you can.

Rock and Rollercoaster Starring Aerosmith: You live life in the fast lane and love a good party. You listen to 1980s hair metal and have more than one vintage t-shirt in your suitcase.

Mission Space: Orange: You have a strong stomach. You’re the one who has no fears about life. I applaud your strength.

Mission Space: Green: You’re friends with the Orange riders, but you opted out for the safer choice. You’re the level-headed one amongst friends. You go along with the crowd but only up to a certain point.

It’s a Small World: You have newborn children who need naps, you’re retired, or you’re a glutton for punishment.

DINOSAUR: You were the kid who had mounds of plastic dinosaurs littering your bedroom floor. There’s nothing wrong with delving into your nerdy side.

Harry Potter World: You’re the Guest who has no clue they’re at a Disney park or that Disney DOES NOT OWN Harry Potter anything… It’s okay. You can always take TTA back to your resort after looking for Expedition Everest in Magic Kingdom. What time is that 3 o’clock parade, again?

 

I know I forgot a lot of attractions, so mention more in the comments below! And, just in case you were wondering, I’m a combo R&R/Jungle Cruise type of gal. Ugh, love me some Jungle Cruise…

 

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Not Needing to Save Mr. Banks: A Review

20 Dec

SUPERCALIFRAGILISTICEXPIALIDOCIOUS. (When you don’t know what to say… But seeing as this is a movie review, I’ll do my utmost “to leaf through lengthy lexicons to find the perfect word.”)

Disney geeks (such as myself) will drool over John Lee Hancock’s Saving Mr. Banks. The story revolves around Mary Poppins author, PL Travers, and her life surrounding her decision to give Mary Poppins rights to Walt Disney for production.

The incomparable Tom Hanks IS Walt Disney. I wonder how many hours Hanks devoted to studying, analyzing, and observing archived footage of 1960’s Disney. He did a phenomenal job, getting every little detail that D23 members would catch. Hanks presents an amiable showman with a soft side, no doubt the result of watching personal interviews along with Disney’s TV spots from the 1950s and 1960s.

Emma Thompson is the real star of this movie, however. Thompson’s Travers had such emotional depth in a character written too snarky at times not to be a caricature. Thompson made sure to present the author in a well-rounded manner when going for the sass would’ve been an easier option, especially given the pendulum of emotions written for Travers. 

Like any Disney movie (especially the live-action films), it can get a bit cheesy and overworked. Flashbacks retell Travers’ childhood and what presumably led her to create her flying nanny. I’m sure her back-story was romanticized to boost conflict and move along what would normally be a droll plot. However, it’s Disney. It’s a live-action movie. Why would I expect it to NOT be romanticized?

What Disney fanatics will love are the subtle (and not-so-subtle) Easter eggs hidden throughout the movie. The slight animosity between the Sherman brothers. The posters of the Florida project on Disney’s office wall toward the end of the film. The fact that Disney’s real signature was used in the opening Disney logo. The faithful recreation of the Mary Poppins premier at the Chinese Theater. And if you’re a huge Disney buff, STAY FOR THE CREDITS. The real archived recordings of Travers’ interactions with the production staff are played. They are hysterical and you can see why Disney had his hands full with obtaining the rights from Travers.

The problem with these Disney nerd-moments is that Hancock assumes too much of his audience at times, hence some of the “preachy” and self-congratulatory moments mentioned by other (aka professional-people-who-watch-movies-for-a-living) reviewers. Hancock assumes that his audience understands the revolutionary ripples surrounding MP’s production. “Feed the Birds” was Walt’s favorite song. The film is dedicated to Diane Disney Miller, Walt’s eldest daughter, who died as production was wrapping up. The animatronic robin Mary Poppins holds in her hand near the Banks’s window was the first use of animatronics in a feature film. Mary Poppins was one of the final films Walt saw through to completion before his death. Hancock assumes his audience knows all of these little quirks and mistakenly presents an unfair fight that weakens Travers’ character.

Overall, the film was amazing. I’ll probably be seeing it again. It’s cheesy and heart-warming and sad and full of emotions that should be predictable for a live-action Disney movie. However, I still get bowled over anyway… It’s a great family film. Take the kids. Enjoy it, then go watch Mary Poppins immediately after.