MY SPY | Raw Review

And… BOOM!

So, I had the pleasure of screening MY SPY with Dave Bautista and Chloe Coleman. Following the screening, I had the honor of interviewing one of the stars, and for this movie… it was the incredibly talented and in-touch, Chloe Coleman.

You know her from Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made, you know her from Big Little Lies on HBO — she’s fantastic and here is what she had to say about her journey and growth through the production of My Spy.



ONWARD WITH THE RAW REVIEW!

The PG-13 Rating

Language? Honestly… not really a problem. If your kiddos have seen any of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) content since Phase Three — and, they didn’t have any problems… then they’ll be fine 😉

Suggestive Content? None. It’s clean. The closest anything gets is some cute awkward romance interactions between two grown ups.

Violence? Again, did your kiddo do okay with when Nebula was getting ***** by Thanos in Avengers? They’ll be fine. In fact, nothing even COMES CLOSE to that.

Emotional Intensity. For a super fun film, there was some fairly gritty emotional content. It’s nothing like mass death or tragic loss, as much as it is people dealing with people, their own emotions, and the process of accepting themselves. For some younger children who are emotionally in tune, it might make some feelings bubble up to the surface – nothing bad, mind you… in fact, it’s a great opportunity to talk through some of these emotional valences from parent to kiddo.

The Content

It’s Self Aware. The entire production knows it is here to have fun. Nothing is taken too seriously. If anything, EVERYTHING is taken as it should be — plain fun!

It’s Charming. Chloe’s role in this film MADE THE FILM. The dynamic between Chloe Coleman and Dave Bautista brought the best out of them as a team — the happy, the sad, the hilarious, the nerve-wracking, and the romantic ridiculousness. It’s good stuff.

There are complex motivations, wide ranges of emotions, great times for adults and kids — strong lessons that deal with stereotypes, bullying, breaking the norm, and accepting oneself as a first step to helping others.

Comedic references were 100% laugh out loud and the timings were perfect. So perfect, in fact… that I caught myself saying the references out loud at the same time the characters did. #Priceless


Bottom Line: It’s worth the watch!

Get ready for an evening of fun, frills, action, LOLs, and all together feels of the goods watching good peeps and good guys win over the baddies.

When the action starts, sit back and smile. As the comedy hits NONSTOP, be sure you grab a pillow to brace your sides. They will hurt so good 🙂 AND, when you get all the feels — embrace them.

Once Again: A HUGE shoutout to Risa Chapnick at Boutique Publicity for including me in this ridiculously fun film.

My Spy is available now via Amazon Prime Video — GO WATCH IT!!!!

“Dads” | Bryce Dallas Howard | Film Review

So… a little while ago, I received an email via this blog asking if I’d be interested in screening a film and potentially being a part of a roundtable interview panel for Bryce Dallas Howard.

BRYCE. DALLAS. HOWARD.

In case you’ve been living under a rock… lol, whatever, we’ve ALL BEEN LIVING LIKE THAT… #COVID19… BUUUUT, we’ve also had access to streaming services. 🤓

You know her. She’s incredible; as an actor, director, and producer. If I listed her accomplishments, that’d be the entire blog.


So. ONWARD: I had my “Why, YES!” moment — and, got to screen the film late into the evening… with a teary pillow, LOL. It was a marvelous production.

Dads on Apple TV+ is Bryce Dallas Howard’s feature directorial debut. That was of particular interest to me; which became my question for her during our roundtable interview.

There is SO much to be said about the documentary — but, #NOSPOILERS.

So… I’ll leave you with this, and a few choice clips from interviews and trailers below, with my heartfelt encouragement to watch this film for Father’s Day 2020.

“Dads” is a celebration and exploration of the modern-day dad.

It’s a raw look that brings moments of joy, tears, and most importantly…shows them many ways a dad can be dads — fulfilling their role as Bryce said, as a caretaker.

And, while that in and of itself may not be “exciting or eventful” even per Bryce’s own words. Being a dad isn’t necessarily glamourous.

HOWEVER, what Ms. Howard masterfully depicted in her documentary is how incredible that one word can be.

CARETAKER.

This film shows how profound that one word…

How fun that one word…

How ridiculous that one word…

How dedicated that one word…

How devoted that one word…

And, how reviving this one word now has become for the modern day dad.


To me, a dad is one who is their child’s champion and true north in living their best life.


It was a wonderful production.

It carried diversity in thought, in spirit, in representation… and, most importantly, in “how dads do.” — imagine it from the voice of Ze Frank [example click here… not necessarily fully appropriate for work/kids 😬].

With that, a big shoutout to Boutique Publicity for including me in this remarkable experience.

And… that’s it! GO WATCH “DADS!”


MORE MEDIA BELOW ↴

Here’s a clip from our dad + mom blog roundtable

Here’s The Full Trailer

And… an interview bit with Bryce Dallas Howard

Please find the full article here.

We Have Baby Birds!

They built a nest.

They laid eggs.

They hatched on Mother’s Day.

And, then… they all fledged on the same day.

My web cam obviously isn’t of the highest quality… but, here are some cute cuts of the mom being fed by the dad — which apparently happens for quite some time before and after the hatchlings emerge.

Both parents will transition to feeding the babies as often as they can. Then, the babies get HUGE in just a matter of days… with the first one fledging away as the mom was arriving to deliver another meal. #IMayHaveCried

You know… all together, it was just so cool having new life around the house — particularly in this coronavirus lockdown thing.

In fact, the parents are going for another clutch of eggs… hoping the best for them!

Reflections: Fun vs. Fail — The Super Mario Effect|Mark Rober

So… this one is a long time coming. I actually have an even OLDER post, something in the order of over two years old that I’ve left in queue… mostly because it contains some strong thoughts for which I believe strongly… some which may be considered controversial, others may label it extreme or wrong… not even worth entertaining (which is a shame)… or maybe, just maybe — thoughts that just need to be shared.

Well… I’m not there yet. But, we can start here as a primer.


TLDR…errr. “W” – Watch??? 1:01 and 9:55 are PURE PARENTING GOLD.

FUN vs. FAIL

Why this topic? Well… it’s not a secret that I have a certain disgruntled ness towards “formal” and/or “standard” schooling. This is mostly the case because of how the system betrays itself and its students from stage to stage — the goal isn’t learning, the goal is testing… and, as Master Yoda would say….

“That is why you fail.”

Yoda.

The purpose of education SHOULD BE learning… not memorizing and regurgitating… not testing and scoring well… not be swayed one way or another from an educator’s individual world view… learning.

Unfortunately, when you look at the behaviors of what we have today… it’s really more of education = testing well, scoring well, making it to the next level… and, then what??? It has more to do with existential crises of grades vs. self worth. It has more to do with extreme short sighted behaviors despite the promise of investment in long term goals.

ANNND… the thing is, none of how GPAs, test scores, or anything of that nature is FUN. It teaches you to survive or fail — but, not to THRIVE as one should in life. Besides, life is a Pass/No-Pass event. You either go, or you stop. You either finish, or you give up. You aren’t graded on your life.

Yet… that’s what we do to our kids.


Get ready to get gritty… it’s gonna get real.

Of course, at higher levels, learning how to learn, learning to discern — that’d be great, too. What is learning? To me, it’s simple: Gathering an accurate understanding of the world.

If you consider say what a puppy does to “learn” or what a baby or toddler does to “learn” — beyond formal didactic studies or any of that nature, they are trying to gather some sense of certainty in a world that began for them as completely uncertain. Therefore, understanding of the world isn’t readily measured by testing per se. That is why I feel that “failure” opposite the “A+” marks goes completely against how we are biologically wired to understand the world around us.

And, let’s think on this one step further: How well did you feel you understood the world after 6th grade, after 12th grade? How prepared were you to use that understanding to live a productive and meaningful life?? Even after college — how well did that bachelor’s degree prepare you for the job market???

When it comes to the present day customary understanding of the schooling systems… not well… not well at all.

NOW… this isn’t a dig at our educators. I’ll explain more about this in that long awaited post I’ll probably publish next. This is a dig at the systems in place; how these pieces in play force students and educators to betray the mission of learning — and, everyone knows it. No one wants to be measured up against a test score. We’re more than that.

So, ultimately… what I’m trying to share in this post is that we need to change our expectations of learning… make it about FUN, not about failure. We need to use failure as a mechanism to improve learning, not as a potential result… a label one must wear because they tried… for such a thing causes people to lose will to try and try again.

That, would be the greatest tragedy to the spirit of learning.

Failure is the mother of success.

—A Chinese Proverb