Tag Archive: civil war

Avengers and Freedom

Family Movie Night

By Karyn Bowman

All this past week the only movie I heard being discussed was Black Panther starring Chadwick Boseman.

blackpantherIt is setting records like crazy for highest box office, for highest pre-sale tickets. People are marveling over the fact that the director is only 31 years old. But Ryan Coogler also directed Creed, winning Sylvester Stallone an Academy Award nomination for best supporting actor.

His other movie was the highly touted Fruitville Station, the story about a man shot in the San Francisco mass transit station. All three movies feature Michael B. Jordan. Ever since I saw Jordan on the TV show, Parenthood, I had a feeling he would be a force in Hollywood.

Some people have that ‘something’ and Jordan has ‘it.’ When I saw him in Creed you could feel his charisma. But one of his goals was to play a guy totally unlike himself, completely different and that meant finding a ‘bad guy’ role. He has found that role in Black Panther as Erik Killmonger.

I plan to see this movie sometime in the near future, Black Panther will surely be around for sometime. I‘ve made due with clips and trailers that I can see on Youtube. My youngest has been ordered by his brother to stop giving away the secrets of the movie.

If I am lucky I will still know nothing by the time I get to see it.

Captain America Civil warIn the meantime, I will have to settle for Captain America: Civil War. In this installment of the Marvel Universe, Captain America/Steve Rogers and Iron Man/Tony Stark do not see eye to eye about legislation meant to keep these superheros in check. Tony is for it while Steve believes it goes against everything that America stands for.

Rogers saw what happened the last time people were forced to register and does not want a repeat of that world. Stark, on the other hand, understands why governments want to control the damage that can be done by these super battles.

Soon, the various members of the Avengers, including a whole host of new people, are choosing sides. Some side with Cap, others decide to join forces with Tony. It is not pretty and some of the team members have total fanboy moments. All of this leads to an epic fight between Iron Man and Captain America.

More importantly, there is another force taking advantage of this divide. The reasons why seem crazy and not so crazy. And in the end, it makes us question what we know to be true.

Cap and ironman fightThis is a movie I have watched a few times. While I have a crush on Captain America and his philosophy of what it means to be American, I am fascinated by Tony Stark’s emotional development. Stark appears to be suffering from PTSD but wants to hide it. He also wants to be in charge and constantly improving his technology while ignoring that he made his money from weapons. These are characters that are complex and act out in ways that seem contradictory to what we view as their intrinsic values.

While I notice new details about sets, I never cease to be amazed by the development – both good and bad – of the characters in the Marvel Universe.

Until next week, see you in the rental aisle.

Civil Disobediance

Family Movie Night

By Karyn Bowman

With Pumpkin Fest coming and the theme being Pumpkins in Paradise, my mind keeps playing the old Jimmy Buffet song, Cheeseburgers in Paradise.

Wrong, so wrong and yet there it is.

pumpkin-fest-porchInstead, I am trying to focus on the fun aspects of the annual fest with the parade going by my house, pumpkins on our steps for decoration, and the need to make sure all cars are properly parked and out of the way before parade time.

Well, at least our steps are filled with pumpkins.

But this week has also seen the release of the latest Marvel Comics movie, Captain America:Civil War.

For fans of action movies and movies with a bit of fantasy, this is a winner.

I like Marvel for allowing characters to grow and develop. I like that they explore themes and realistic emotional scenarios. Most of us may never deal with aliens trying to take over our world. But we do have family members dealing with post-traumatic stress. And for those who follow politics, we know people who may like each other but really disagree on how to keep America safe.

In fact, that issue drives this movie. Because of the events in past movies and lives that have been lost and cities that have been damaged beyond repair, it has been decided by the UN that superheroes need to register and that they will only ‘help’ in situations in which they are called upon to help.

Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) agrees with this policy and feels superheroes need to be reined in. But Captain America (Chris Pine), the WWII hero, feels this is the wrong way to go. He is a veteran of the war in which people were separated out for their differences and does not want to be impeded to give help whenever help is needed.

Captain America Civil WarThe fight becomes brutal and personal when Bucky, the Winter Soldier, resurfaces as the possible culprit of a nasty bombing and assassination of an African king. There will be long time repercussions from this event. Soon, people are divided and they are recruiting new and old members to join the fight.

I find this to be a well done addition to the series. It is the last of the Captain America movies, although not the last time for us to see Captain America. It features the inclusion of new characters (Ant-Man and Falcon) while unveiling a few new friends (Spiderman and Black Panther), one of whom are clearly in awe of everyone he is fights for and against.

It is an entertaining movie with it’s one-liners and smart retorts. Characters still speak to each other as friends, even when they hate each others’ guts. There are plenty of explosions and fights to the death, including the last big fight between Cap and Iron man.

This may not be a movie for your youngest child or one that has a short tolerance for the action violence. There is one spot that might make a protective parent wary. But in the end , I enjoyed the movie for being willing to ask tough questions about power and the wielding of it.

Until next week, see you in the rental aisle.

Historic Hunka Hunka

Picture by Alvimann

On this day, the day we celebrate the beginning of our country, there will be many blogs doing just that.

They will show all the different wonderful parts of our country – the beautiful vistas, the bustling cities, flag pictures, houses with red, white and blue potted flowers, past firework displays.

I thought about celebrating the Fourth in this manner or explaining some great historical bit of fascinating trivia. However, I am not doing that at all. I am going to celebrate this day by celebrating historical hunks.

Alexander Hamilton by Alonzo Chappell; Image from Wikipedia

It started when I did my post on Alexander Hamilton and someone noted his wonderful eyes.

Here are the facts about Hamilton. He created the banking system of our country, was the first secretary of the Treasury,  wrote parts of the constitution and married into the historic and politically connected Schuyler family of New York.

He was a hunk of his time and allegedly had several affairs. When the husband of Maria Reynolds tried to blackmail him over their affair, Hamilton effectively ended his political aspirations for higher office by publicly admitting to the affair and apologizing to his family.

Joseph Smith was a descendant of a Mayflower passenger; Image from Mayflowerhistory.com

Next up on the hunk list is Joseph Smith, the founder of the mormon church. He said he found golden tablets that established the Latter Day Saints movement, tried create various settlements in Illinois and Missouri, privately stated polygamy was a great way to live, ran for President of the United States and was killed by a mob in Illinois in 1844 when he was 38.

What you have to know about this handsome devil is that he grew up during the Second Awakening religious movement of our country. But there was a tradition of folk magic that influenced him as well. As a young man he was a ‘treasure hunter’ who would find treasure for you when he would put a magic stone in a white stovepipe hat.

Plus, he was handsome and charming. This allowed him to pull the wool over a lot of eyes, although his in-laws hated him.  Look at his coolly assertive eyes and those handsome cheekbones. After reading his history, I am not sure what to call him but a christian is not one name I would pick.

So you want another good-looking man from history. How about Ulysses S. Grant?

Image from clangrant-us.org

This image is from 1863 in the middle of the civil war. Grant has the reputation as a drinker. According to the Clan Grant website this is not true. Abraham Lincoln was once quoted as saying “If this is what helps him win, then send a case to the other generals. ”

Grant was known as a throughly charming although unpretentious man. His behavior towards Robert E. Lee at the end of the war did much to heal the wounds of the war. If that was not enough it was Grant who established the first National Park in Yosemite in 1873. He would not allow his generals to decimate the Indian population. When his family had suffered a huge financial loss due to theft, Grant made sure that all of his debts were paid back. Near the end of his life, Grant wrote a memoir despite dealing with the pain of throat cancer that would support his family for the rest of their lives. There is a lot to respect in those actions. For me, it is this straight on look that makes him handsome. There is something there that one can trust. You are reassured just by his steadiness. And his two vices in the world? His horses and his kids. Yep, I have become a big fan. Now it is your turn. Who in American history do you find incredibly handsome?