Sunday, June 12, 2011

A Nine Year Old's Rap Sheet

The summer movie season continues eating away at our budget intently, as two movies came up on the docket this weekend... the first came as a result of our nephew Benjamin coming to visit.  The 9 year old and his family live in Jasper, but they spend time here in B'ham with the in-laws (mine, not theirs) frequently.

One of the activities including him playing hours and hours of LEGO Harry Potter on the Wii, and another was a movie... "Kung Fu Panda 2".  Originally subtitled "The Kaboom of Doom", I'm kinda glad they dropped that and just went with the "2" part.

Anyway, I liked the movie as much as the first one.  Its premise basically surrounds a panda named Po (voiced by Jack Black) who, in the first film, learned he was a "dragon warrior" and was taught Kung Fu, and joined up with other members of the Furious Five, including Tigress (Angelina Jolie) and Mantis (Seth Rogan) and others.  For whatever reason, Grandmaster Flash wasn't included in this.

The bad guy this time around is an evil peacock named Shen, deliciously vocalized by Gary Oldman, and you'll hear other familiar voices like Jean Claude Van Damme, Dennis Haysbert and Danny McBride. 

The animation is wonderful, the story is solid and flows well and its perfect for just about anyone of any age.  You kinda wonder if there is an attraction between Po and Tigress, but the real relationship moments are between Po and his adoptive father, Mr. Ping.  You can tell its adoption when you see Mr. Ping is a goose. 

Po wonders who he is, knowing that a goose cannot be his real dad, and begins to question his family... and in a touching moment, Mr. Ping is forced to watch his beloved son Po walk away to battle. 

As far as Po's real family, they kinda do that movie thing where one of the main issues in the second movie is an issue they don't even address in the first one... sorta like, when you realize Riggs wife is dead in the first Lethel Weapon, its only a minor plotpoint they use to establish the character, but when Lethel Weapon 2 rolls around, it becomes a major point in the story.

Same with Po's real family--only used to establish Po's character in KFP 1, but in KFP 2, it becomes a plot point.  Guess you can do that with sequels... 

And man that 9 year old kid loves him some Panda.  And Bakugon.  And Bey Blades.  After the movie, then dinner at Chick Fila, we dropped the quickly tiring The Lovely Steph Leann off at The Cabana, then Benjamin and I spent some time first at The LEGO Store, then Toys R Us.

I do love The LEGO Store.  Of course, every time I go there, I look over at ABC Toys, where The Happiest Place in the Mall used to be, and I throw up a little in my own mouth.  Like I did last night.  Ended up walking out with three LEGO guys he built himself, and a couple of Harry Potter keychains I bought for myself.

At Toys R Us, he spent about 30 minutes in front of the Bakugon and Bey Blade aisle, touching just about every toy and telling me which ones he had and which ones he needed.   I listened intently, though I can't say I learned anything.

Should be noted that for whatever reason, he likes rap music.  I dont think he fully understands the concept of "rap music", other than its style, so I was forced to fumble through my car for something that he could listen to.  Luckily, I had a copy of "The Greatest" by LL Cool J, and was able to pop in "Mama Said Knock You Out", which he rather enjoyed.  My other other CDs in the car at that moment included Norah Jones, Sara Bareilles, Sarah McLachlan, Darius Rucker and, of course, Dwight Yoakam's Greatest Hits--$5.99 at Wal-Mart, I considered it a steal. 

Songs that I did manage to find on radio that made the cut were the edited version of "California Love" by Tupac and Dr. Dre... "Rocket 2 U" by The Jets... "Head Over Heels" by Tears for Fears... "Big Time" by Peter Gabriel... and "The Come Back Song" by Darius Rucker.  "You Give Good Love" by Pre-crack Whitney also came on, but he informed me, "I don't like slow songs.  I like rocker songs.  And rap music."

We got about 34 seconds into "Dre Day", but I was able to flip the channel just as I heard the syllable "Muth..." and saved the day.  Sometimes SiriusXM will censor, sometimes not.  And since I listen to 90s on 9 a heckuva lot, I was bewildered that because I hear "Hip Hop Hooray", "Gangsta's Paradise" and "Baby Got Back" repeatedly, I just knew I would catch one of them for Benjamin's listening pleasure... but when I needed them to come on, I got nothing.  Thats how I knew my life was outta luck, foo.

He did ask me if I had ever heard an Eminem song... I told him I had.  He asked me if I liked any Eminem songs.  I told him not many, though there were a few that I kinda liked.  He asked me if Eminem was bad.  I told him that yes, Eminem songs are pretty bad.  He asked me how.  I told him there was a lot of language, and that Eminem really liked to use lots of F-words.  He asked me, "What's an F-word?"  I changed the subject.

I finally popped in a CD that I had gotten from The Happiest Place in the Mall, one that included Hilary Duff, Aly & AJ and some High School Musical stuff.  Figured that was safe as anything. 

The line of night came when "Hoedown Throwdown" by Miley Cyrus came on... sadly, and I'll admit this to you--I know just about every word to it (and to "G.N.O." that came on later... which I'm guessing that besides me, only Hurricane Rhett would even know that stood for "Girls Night Out", much less know it by heart)... anyway, the song came on and Benjamin said, "Really?  Is this Hannah Montana?"

I replied, "Its Miley Cyrus, yes."


"So... why are two guys listening to Hannah Montana?"


Summer of Blogging Day Thirteen

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