Tag Archive: pumpkins


Family Movie Night
By Karyn Bowman
Every now and again, you hear about a movie that makes you want to check it out.
Maybe it is because there is a favorite actor or it’s based on a book that you loved as a kid.
House with a clockAbout a week or so ago, my daughter told me about The House with a Clock in It’s Walls. This movie stars Jack Black as Jonathon Barnavelt and Cate Blanchett as Mrs. Zimmerman. I love Cate Blanchett and Jack Black can be good in small doses.
When surrounded by great actors, Black always becomes better. While still over the top in some ways, Black makes it work for his character by mixing in elements of low key behavior to create a more nuanced person. Blanchett, on the other hand, has the freedom to be more wacky and loose.
What is interesting is that the movie appears to be set in the early 50s. There are references to WWII as a somewhat recent event. Captain Midnight, a popular kid radio and TV show is a favorite of Lewis, Jonathan’s nephew.
Jonathan and Mrs. Zimmerman live next door to each other. They are two witches who are trying to solve a problem within Jonathan’s house. This is not an ordinary house, it has items that move constantly and creatures one would not expect. He inherited the house from another warlock that passed away a year or so before. And before he died, that warlock was creating something in the house that is evil.
To complicate matters, Jonathon’s young nephew Lewis has moved in. His parents recently died so the young boy is coming to stay with his uncle. Lewis is sad and gawky and he likes to wear goggles like his favorite TV hero. Starting school is not easy, especially as he is not athletic, he loves words, and he lives in a house with a bad reputation.
House with a clock 2But Lewis is also a lonely boy and wants to do whatever if takes to prove himself to his new friends. One night he breaks the one rule in his uncle’s house in order to impress another boy. And what that spell does unleashes something that cannot be easily stopped.
This is one of those movies that is only a little scary, Things jump out at you and there are moments of true creepiness (evil mechanical dolls). The computer generated animation was seamless and made various elements seem more real, more fun. It is the kind of movie you can watch with grade school aged children and the family can enjoy it. It is in that bridge area betweenScooby-Doo scary and PG-13 The Woman in Black scary.
As I watched the trailer a few times I began noticing little details I didn’t see before. That makes me want to watch the movie again. I also want to catch those moments of sadness and longing that might lead to deeper understanding of each character going through various stages of loss.
Fun, just a little scary, and a dash of emotional depth. Sounds like my favorite kind of scary movie,
Until next week, see you in the rental aisle.
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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.

Wordless Wednesday

When is it too early to put out Halloween decorations? I am not sure. Some of these were taken last week, others this week. Nevertheless, there is something enjoyable about a good and safe scare.

 
 

Notice the flying bats

 

Notice the Mosquitoe Plant surrounding the ghost

 

Look at the figures in the TreeSpider's Web catches a pumpkin

 

Witchy Display

 

Ghostly Window

 

A display I saw on Sept. 29

 

Our ghoulie

 
  

Opening Act

 

Scary tree

Another flying ghoul farther back

 

Ghoulish gathering

 

Have you seen good home halloween displays yet?

Of Gods and Scarecrows

Fancy Lady Scarecrow

 

 

 Family Movie Night

By Karyn Bowman                  

As some of you might know, I have a blog running on wordpress.com.It is called Notes From Rumbly Cottage in which I discuss life issues, books, movies, political opinions and gardening.

I usually have a post once a week featuring pictures. It is really a smorgasbord of stuff. I mention this because last year I did a post on the scarecrows we have decorating the downtown area during Pumpkin Fest.

Lately, it has become one of my most popular posts as people look at the different scarecrows. What surprised me is that people really love the “Lucy” scarecrow in her black polka dot dress. It made me wonder if people across the country were planning their own scarecrows and were searching for new ideas.

And then it made me think about how interesting that our little town on the edge of the prairie is showing others the way to making a cute or scary or fun scarecrow. I mentioned this to Carol O’Connell, creator of the event as I was walking Storm. He had to talk to her sheep dog, so the humans were able to talk for a few minutes about how well the scarecrows dress up the town for Pumpkin Fest.

We talked about how much the event is a lot of fun for various groups and which parts of creating the scarecrow is the hardest. For Carol, it is coming up with a head. For me, it is the hair. I fail at that aspect every year.

We talked about what we plan to make for this year’s group and Carol gave me a great idea on how to make a wide skirt. I am hoping we can get together this week and make a great scarecrow or two.And then I am going to put it up on my blog.

Poster image from IMDb.com

Enough talk about scarecrows, you say?

How about finding out what movie is coming out on DVD. This week, comic book fans are going to be happy because Thor makes its way to the home theater market.

In the run up to the Avengers series, Thor tells the story of a prince whose arrogance re-starts a bitter war on his home realm. His father gets so mad that he takes away the powers Thor has and exiles him to Earth.

A strange man in a strange land.

But then he meets a beautiful scientist (Natalie Portman) and through her love he learns to grow up. When an old foe threatens the Earth, Thor steps up to the challenge as the mature man he has become.

This movie has it all: Gods battling, huge action, great love, references galore throughout the movie, hints at movies to come. And did I mention that the actor playing Thor, Chris Hemsworth, is a total hottie. The rating is PG because of some violence and intense science fiction action.

Here is what I know. This Friday when it is pizza and movie night at my house, I am making sure that there is room on the couch for me. The kids and the dog might have to fight over who get room on the floor.

Until next week, see you in the rental aisle.

The Cleanup After Halloween

Halloween has been gone for a week now but the candy remains.

Picture by Mensatic

All week the kids have been eating their stash of candy – an impressive haul this year. The chocolates are just about gone and we are down to sweet-tarts and lollipops. What remains are the wrappers.

I find them on the floor, under the coffee table and couches. If I am going up the stairs, looking for laundry in the bedrooms or sweeping up in the kitchen – there they are. The bright colors of red, blue, yellow and green were wonderful when they wrapped chocolate lovelies.

The problem is I am not the only one finding the leftovers of a quick snack. So is our lovable dog, Storm.

This is not good.

Dogs should not have chocolate and Storm always feels the after affects of snitched chocolate. The sweet delight wears him out, loosens the stool and makes life unpleasant for him. He lays about more and farts more but none of that stops him

It makes our walks interesting. As I clean up piles I never know what color of wrapping will appear. What also amazes me is that a dog lives through some of the things that they eat. A candy wrapper or punch ball balloon comes out all in one piece.

All of this has lead to edicts of proper clean up whenever snacking occurs. I enforce wrapper sweeps. When I see wrappers, I make everyone take part in the clean up. When everyone has gotten to bed, I find myself resting my hand under the couch and finding a Snickers or M&M package.

I am not the only one. The dog is going on foraging missions behind the couch, under the couch, behind the dining room table and into the pantry. I have to be armed with the water bottle to make him stop.

Storm sitting in a chair, ready for a banquet.

Soon, the Halloween candy will be relegated to one bag of suckers and gumballs. Halloween will give way to the Thanksgiving feast as pumpkins see a better use to be made into pie and other goodies. I will have to be on the lookout for other candy wrappers soon.

While our dog thinks he is human, he has learned how to sit on a chair, he is not allowed to eat from the table. While he tries to find leftovers, the table is his favorite hunting ground. Just because Grandpa likes to feed him tidbits from the table, does not mean he is allowed that privileged year round. 

Should he ever learn to use a fork and spoon, I might relent.