Monday, May 30, 2005

"There's no place I can be, since I've seen Serenity"

On May 26th, I worked from 8-12, went to my best friend's house and piled my stuff in her car. We made the drive from Mobile to Atlanta in pretty good time, checked into a hotel, and found the movie theater. There was already quite a line of Browncoats waiting to get in. The atmosphere outside the theater was festive, with a charge of excitement in the air. You could tell this was a group of people who were getting the treat of a lifetime! We waited in line for about an hour and were finally let into the building. During that hour, I noticed that people who were coming to the theater to see other movies were looking at us with curious interest. One girl even asked if we were in line for Star Wars. We laughed and told her about a little movie called Serenity that would be released in September. I think she thought we were geeks, but we didn't care!

The movie started at 10 p.m. and we cheered to see Joss Whedon appear on the screen. His message to the fans was heartfelt and funny. So funny. The man is a comic genius. He said the movie was made in part because of the dedication of the fans. He said "we've done the impossible and that makes us mighty" which is a favorite quote from Firefly. The fans cheered when he ended his speech with the words, "welcome to Serenity."

I'm afraid I can't say much about the movie itself, because to say anything about the plot would spoil things, and that's the last thing I want to do. This movie is complex yet simple, beautiful yet gritty, and emotional yet hilarous. Seriously, the comedy in this movie is the best! Snarky humor is my favorite anyway, but even if you don't like snark, you'll love it in this movie. Whedonesque humor has a unique quotability. You will find yourself quoting it often, in fact.

So how does a TV show translate to the big screen? Flawlessly. Nathan Fillion's Captain Malcom Reynolds plays much better on the big screen. He's a larger than life conflicted hero who makes choices that are not always popular, but are made to ensure the survival of his crew. Another character that is enhanced on the big screen is Adam Baldwin's Jayne Cobb. The man relishes each line. He plays Jayne with so much fun and flair that you know he's playing his favorite role ever. It is a rare and beautiful thing to witness, but the actors in this movie love their characters and that love shows on the screen. The chemistry between the actors is phenomenal, and, even though the story is much darker than any of the stories in the series, the humor is just as funny, perhaps funnier.

The version I saw was unfinished and had place holders for music and effects. However, it was practically perfect just the way it was. I hope they don't change anything other than polishing up the effects and putting in the original score.

Joss and Co. keep saying it is up to the Browncoats to help promote the film, so here I am, doing my part. GO SEE SERENITY ON SEPT 30!!! You will not regret it. You will see a film with action, drama, sci fi, adventure, mystery, humor, love, relationships, space ships, gorgeous people, and an awesome script!

It really does have something for everyone.

Go to for more information on the movie.

To find an advanced screening near you, go to There's one on June 23. Tickets are on sale now!

Monday, May 16, 2005

"Well, here I am..."

Okay, so it's not totally original. But it is actually a quote from something. Yet another Firefly quote... are you really shocked to see another one? By now you should know I'm obsessed. But anyway, a bounty hunter who was trying to capture River ends up floating in space at the end of the last episode, "Objects in Space." He says the words, "Well, here I am..." as he's floating into the oblivion of space. That's sort of how I feel at the moment.

Well, here I am. I enjoy my life very much, but it's not much of a life, if you know what I mean. I go to work, I come home, I play around on my computer while watching TV, I go to bed, I get up, I go to work, etc. On weekends, I spend time with my family, which is good, but I don't do anything else. Not really. I've been thinking a lot lately about how I can shake things up a bit. You know, just force myself to change. I need to step out of my comfort zone and really challenge myself to be in new and exciting situations. I found a church I want to visit. I have never been very comfortable going somewhere by myself. I don't eat alone in restaurants and I don't go to movies alone. For some reason, the idea makes me feel like a pathetic loser or something. But it's not true. Losers are people who let the fact that they are not with someone keep them from doing the things they enjoy. I will not allow that to happen to me anymore. Just because my friends are in different cities or are unavailable, that doesn't mean I can't go to a movie, to a play, or visit a new church. So I'm going to go to that church. And this coming Thursday, I'm going to go see Star Wars III by myself. Just because no one in my family likes Sci-Fi doesn't mean I should miss out. :)

So hopefullyl in a month or so, I will be posting about all the exciting things I've been doing instead of the fact that I'm just "here." We have such a short time on this earth, so why should we waste that time sitting around at home when there is so much to do, so much to experience, and so many people to meet? I, for one, do not want to miss anything.

Friday, May 13, 2005

"No child should ever feel the pangs of hunger or the pain of hopelessness...

...I encourage you to help fight hunger in America and bring hope to a hungry child"

These words were spoken by First Lady Laura Bush in support of the efforts of food banks and other hunger relief organizations in the United States.

I bring up the above quote because June 7 is National Hunger Awareness Day. There are some things that individuals, churches and organizations can do to help fight hunger in America. This is an issue close to my heart because I work for one of those food banks that work so hard to feed the people in our community. For information on what you can do to help, visit and take some time to look at the events in your area. If there are no events in your area, contact a local food bank and see what you can do for them on Hunger Awareness Day. If you can't contribute in any other way, wear an orange ribbin on June 7 and tell people it is to remember that hunger in America is a problem and that there are people working to solve it.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

"My life, on occasion, happens to suck beyond the telling of it."

As with many of Joss Whedon's lines (from Buffy, Angel, or Firefly) I really identify with the above quote. Spoken by Buffy, these words sometimes just float into my mind and are the most appropriate words to think and say. Right now I feel this way. And I have no idea why. Well, I guess it can have something to do with a little bit of letdown, because I've spent the better part of the last four months on a project at work that is now over. For some reason, now that this event is done, I feel a sense of loss about it. Also, I'm having one of those bouts of loneliness I wrote about in my previous post. My friends are busy, and my family is very involved with my sister, whose health is questionable right now. She's been going to doctors and having tests, which seem to point to frontal lobe seizures. And of course, they should be concerned with her and involved in the process of finding out what's wrong with her. I feel that way too, but for some reason, tonight, I feel like a teenager who is being neglected by everyone I care about. I feel like having a tantrum or something. I'm way to old for that, though. And even when I wasn't way too old, I didn't have tantrums. I always thought there were kind of stupid. Anyway, so I'm having a pity party right now. I'm serving "poor me" sandwiches and "pay attention to me" tea.

I feel like one of the characters in The Sims, the computer equivalent of playing with dolls. It's a truly remarkable computer game that everyone should try, but I digress. I feel like one of the characters because they always have a little meter that tells the player what levels the characters have of different important needs. There are bathroom, hunger and rest meters, but there is also a social meter. Right now, I feel like my social meter is completely red, which is a very bad thing. I need to interact with people and that's just not happening right now. I don't know what to do, apart from going somewhere and trying to meet new people.

Okay, this is getting to be a stupid little rant by a stupid little girl. Sorry about that. I should go now before it gets any worse.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

"Lord turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted." Psalm 25:16

My devotion for this evening was called: "Lonely or Alone?"

David's psalms always speak to me. He cries out to God in such a real and tangible way. Sometimes I use his words to pray, simply because they say exactly what I'm feeling. It's ironic that my devotion ended up being about loneliness tonight because it's something I've been thinking about a lot lately.

I have friends, family, a church family, and many people I enjoy being around, but sometimes even in the midst of the crowd, I feel lonely. This devotional says that often single people feel ashamed of being lonely, but why should that be the case? Loneliness is perfectly normal. Even Jesus felt it during the last days of his life on Earth.

One thing I know for certain, I have never felt abandoned by God. He has always been there for me, even in my darkest times. So even though I feel lonely and even mildly depressed about my lack of a love life right now, I know that my Father is going to help see me through it. And maybe one day, when I am ready, my Father will send that special someone my way.

Kingdom of Heaven - Bloom's triumph

If there was ever any doubt about Orlando Bloom's ability to carry a movie by himself, it should fade away during the first few minutes of this remarkable film. Ridley Scott may just have another hit on his hands with this dramatic, violent, and utterly beautiful story about a Knight during the Crusades. It was a bloody time and it is a bloody movie, but Bloom pulls off a brilliant performance and carries the movie. Don't get me wrong, there are flaws. Mostly, there is not enough time to develop the relationship between Bloom and his love interest in the film. One thing that does not suffer from lack of development is Bloom's character, however. He grows a great deal in this film, from a blacksmith, to a barron, to the "savior" of the people of Jerusalem. In the sweeping, grand way that took our breath away in "Gladiator," Scott paints a beautiful picture, intercutting the grandiose, massive battle scenes with more intimate scenes of individual characters, either in the battle or watching it. Sometimes large scale epic films tend to have cheesy or disappointing endings. This one had neither. It ended just the way it should have ended.

In a time when eyes are again turned to the Middle East, as they often are, this film is relevant and important. It tells a compelling story and entertains at the same time. And, speaking strictly as a woman, Orlando Bloom looks great even when he's scruffy and dirty from battle!

Monday, May 09, 2005

"O me! O Life!" by Walt Whitman

There has been a lot of talk (with the recent release of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy) about the ultimate question. I'd say the ultimate question is basically "Why are we here?" or "What is our purpose in life?". Walt Whitman posed this question in his poem, "O Me, O Life," and I think he came up with a very good answer.

"That you are here. That life exists, and identity. That the powerful play goes on and you will contribute a verse."

What is your verse? What is mine? I used to think my verse would have to be grand and sweeping, like a starring role in a Broadway play or a Hollywood movie. Or a best selling novel. While I have not given up my ambitions, especially that last one, I have changed my idea of what my verse may be. I have decided that every day I can find a way to contribute a verse in a unique and wonderful way. I can be kind to someone. I can offer encouragement. I mentioned in a previous post that I think the world would be a better place if we all showed more compassion. I believe that with all my heart. If I am the only one shouting the message of love and compassion from the hilltops, I will continue shouting. It is a message the world needs. So no matter who you are, no matter where you are, you can contribute a verse in the powerful play.

I think the reason I feel so strongly about showing compassion is because I am a Christian who tries to live the way Christians are supposed to live. The message Jesus preached was one of compassion and love. It's time for us to show that love and compassion for each other.

More Serenity screenings...

So this is a very interesting marketing campaign that Universal Pictures has decided to launch for the upcoming SciFi movie, Serenity. On May 5, they opened the movie to 10 theaters in major cities all over the US. These screenings sold out within only a few hours and the response from those screenings has been overwhelmingly positive. So what does Universal do? They set up more advanced screenings, this time in 20 cities. Well, I was very depressed about missing the first round of screenings, but today I was able to purchase my tickets for May 26 in Atlanta. So my best friend and I will be there with the other Browncoats in the area, waiting for the chance to see our movie 4 months early! Of course, this is an unfinished version of the film, so in September when the final version comes out, we will be at the theater again to see it in all its glory!

This whole advanced screening thing made me think about marketing techniques. Sci Fi is a hard sell among mainstream audiences, so they rely heavily on word of mouth. Star Wars has become a mainstream hit and it started out with unknowns and a cult following. Serenity has the potential to become as successful as Star Wars because it is the same scenario. Also, it is a compelling story with very good characters that have been well written. Not to mention the actors had a great deal of time getting into the characters' heads since they played them on the short lived TV show. For those of you who have not experienced the brilliance that is Firefly, pick up the DVD sets right now. Those who have seen it are most likely fans already. Go see Serenity. I will have a non-spoilery review on this blog after the screening, but I have a feeling my opinion of the movie will not change after seeing it. I will go in to the movie as a fan, but will write about it as a critic, so expect a (mostly) unbiased review after May 26.

Until then, Keep Flyin'!

Friday, May 06, 2005

Update on Serenity screenings

By all accounts I've read on, the screenings were a great success. Thousands of Browncoats got to see the movie of the year on Thursday night and though I was not among them, I have to say that it sounds like they had a great time and I'm glad everyone who went got a chance to go.

I would also like to add that if they decide to do more screenings, I will be there come hell or high water! No matter what I have to do, I will be there!

One poster at the Browncoats site (link provided above) said Serenity is this generation's Star Wars. He said he knew what it must have felt like to leave the theater after seeing the first Star Wars. What a great comment, considering that they are actually quite similar, both being gritty sci fi movies with relative unknowns as the stars. Hopefully, this film will take off (no pun intended) and will create so much interest that they will do a trilogy. This is a strong possibility if the film does well, so please go see this movie in September. It will be the best film you've seen all year. I'm sure of it.

"So why don't we go, somewhere only we know"

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This picture is of my sister's daughter. She (and her two brothers) are the lights of my life. The above quote is from a Keane song. If you haven't discovered this band, you should. Anyway, I thought of this song today when I was at the beach with my sister's three children. We had a great time playing in the sand and the water. The kids posed for pictures and built sand castles. The above picture was not posed, however. It was simply a 2 year old girl's moment of reflection. I thought it was the perfect moment to capture. I guess this place, this moment, was the "somewhere only we know." I looked at this picture later this evening, after giving the kids a bath and putting them to bed and I realized how important it is to spend time with those we love. I mean, I knew it was important, but you know what I mean. This little girl who is looking so intently at the sunset in this picture was just a baby only a few weeks ago, and in a few months, she'll be a young lady. It's amazing how time flies. Geez, can I throw another cliche around? It's amazing how philisophical I can get at 1 a.m. I'd better stop now before I start saying "It's better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all" or something equally tired. I'll spare you that.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

JJ Abrams does it again... Lost and Alias shine

Well, after a very long hiatus, Lost is back in full force. Last night's episode, "The Greater Good" contained all the elements we Lost fans have come to love about the show. It had great character development in that we got to see some of Sayid's past through flashbacks, showing us more of his motivations for his actions on the island. We got to see the islanders mourn Boone's untimely death, which was so moving I actually got tears in my eyes. The episode set up the perfect situation for the season finale, which is coming very soon. Lost fans wait impatiently for the finale and dread it at the same time, because they know Lost will be gone for the summer when the finale is over.

One big reveal in this episode has to be the fact that Locke hit Sayid on the head way back in the beginning of the series, when Sayid was trying to get a signal on the transceiver. It has been a mystery since that episode and now it is solved. Many fans were surprised. Another surprise was the fact that Shannon went after Locke to avenge her brother's death. She shot him, but not fatally. In fact, it was only a flesh wound. Oddly, it was Sayid that kept her from killing Locke. The episode ended with Sayid insisting Locke show him the hatch that Locke and Boone have been working to uncover. The set up for next episode was amazing, and the next few weeks are going to be incredible. Stay tuned to Lost for more excitement.

Directly after Lost, another of my favorite shows comes on. Last night's episode of Alias was the best I've seen in a good long while. Jack Bristow was suffering from radiation illness because he exposed himself to radiation in order to save Sidney's life. Sidney found out about it and wanted to help find a cure for him. He was having hallucinations about something that happened in the past, about someone who could help him in the present, and Sidney had to pretend to be her own mother in order to get the location of that someone from Jack. It was heart renching. It was the most emotional hour of TV I've ever seen. Jack was telling Sidney (who he thought was Sidney's mother) how much he loved Sidney and wanted to be at home with her. He said he was going to quit his job so he could be with Sidney more. Sidney had to stand there and listen to this, pretending to be her own mother, crying and wanting to tell her dad that she loved him too and she understood. It was so well done. Of course, they got the location of the man who could help Jack and at the end it appeared that he will be cured eventually. It was an awesome episode and I can't wait to see what happens next.

Wednesday nights have never been better with the powerhouse team of Lost and Alias. I just hope ABC realizes what it has and doesn't mess with the formula next season!

Monday, May 02, 2005

"Could you not do that while we're.... ever??"

In the short-lived but brilliant show called Firefly, my favorite character, Simon, said the above quote to the somewhat crude Jayne, the guy with the girl's name. When I think of this quote, I start to think about pet peeves. Who doesn't have one or two pet peeves?

Mine are pretty standard, bad drivers, rudeness, people who are unkind to others, especially when the others are less fortunate, people who are fake, personal habits that are annoying, etc.

But there is one pet peeve that really upsets me more than the rest. I can't stand when people generalize. The other day my dad said something that amounted to "all women are bad drivers." That got me so angry that we had a tremendous fight about it. My dad is not a sexist person and the context is important because he had just been cut off by a woman who was driving with her cell phone at her ear. She wasn't paying attention to what she was doing and almost hit my dad. The thing that irritated me the most was not that he was generalizing about women, but that he was generalizing at all. It's like people who say that all Christians are narrow minded and hate everyone who is not a Christian. That's just not true. I have had to face that most of my life; the attitude that because I'm a Christian, I can't be loving to people who don't share my beliefs. That is totally stupid and every time I see that attitude I want to just show that person that I can love even those who are narrow minded about me and my beliefs.

But that's not the rant I want share today. Today's rant is about generalizing. People are individuals, unique and special. They should never be put into little boxes because of one trait or another. Don't generalize. Treat people the way they were meant to be treated, as unique and special individuals, worth your time and consideration.

Climbing off the soapbox now.

Sunday, May 01, 2005

Grey's Anatomy

A series that has taken me by surprise, this show is actually well-written, funny, heartfelt, and entertaining. The show is not really your typical hospital show. It has more to do with the people than the medical part. The main characters are interns, in fact, struggling through the program, trying to distinguish themselves in a sea of other interns who are trying just as desperately to stand out. It can be a bit of a hospital soap opera at times, but what do you expect since it comes on after Desperate Housewives? (a show I also love) If you haven't seen Grey's Anatomy, you should check it out. It is interesting and funny. And the guy who plays Dr. Shepherd is hot. (not that that matters or anything.. lol)

Serenity News: Screenings Sell Out!

Universal has devised an unusual way to market the movie Serenity (coming to theaters Sept. 30, 2005) to the fans as well as those who have never heard of it. They created a screening day, May 5, for people to view the movie early (an unfinished cut) in 10 cities in America. Of course, there were no screenings near me, but I was certainly willing to drive 6 hours to Atlanta. Unfortunately, the fans looking to buy online seemed to have crashed Fandango and tickets could only be purchased at the theater. One Atlanta news source said the tickets sold out in 10 minutes. Kind of makes you wonder what all the buzz is about, doesn't it?

So on May 5, I will not be watching Serenity, but I will try to find a review online to post here. I will wait (impatiently) for September 30 to see my favorite heroes on the big screen for the first time.

Until then, Browncoats unite and help market this film in any way you can. We will make sure our Serenity keeps flyin'. (Serenity trilogy, anyone?)

Go take a (hitch) hike

As a fan of the books, I wanted to see this movie very much. Not to mention I was told that the Serenity trailer would be attached to this movie. (see previous post for information about said trailer)

The movie is very good. It is bizarre, funny, and visually interesting, just as expected. Unfortunately, some of the humor from the books doesn't translate well into the movie, and it leaves people who haven't read the books at a bit of a loss about certain key plot points. For instance, my best friend saw the movie with me. She hadn't read the book and was very confused about some of the characters and their pasts, as well as their motivations, etc. Some plot points escaped her too and I'm sure it's because of unfamiliarity with the source material, since she is actually a very sharp person who is usually able to spot things in movies way before I do!

For fans of the books, this movie will be the ultimate geek fest (and I say that in a good way, being somewhat of a geek myself) If you haven't read the books, you might want to do so before watching the movie. Or if you don't, the movie might inspire you to read at least the first one so the details in the movies will be a little easier to understand within the context of the richly detailed book.

What's happening in the world?

Lois Lane asked Clark Kent this question after he gave her a "super kiss" so she would forget his identity and the love they had shared. Sometimes I feel like asking that question, but in a different context.

What is happing in the world? We read newspapers, watch 24 hour news channels, and surf the Internet and get all this news. Mostly bad news. Now maybe I'm just feeling a little philosophical today for whatever reason, but I often wonder if we would have a better world (and better news) if we would stop concentrating on what's happening in the world and would ask a different question: "What can I do to make the world better?"

What can we do? Not to climb onto a soapbox or anything, but I think if each person was a little bit kinder, showed a little more compassion, we would not see so much bad news when we seek the answer to the question: "What's happening in the world?"

Ramble over.