The Lorax – not your typical movie review

I've never written a movie review, and never plan to, so this is not a movie review. I rarely take my kids to the movie theater, not because that after the tickets, popcorn, candy and sodas you could have made a down payment on new car, but because there's no pause button-and it never fails that one or both will need to go to the restroom (and it's always during a good part of the movie). So, yeah, I'm the "Daddy you never take us to the movies!" guy. Oh, well. I'll wait until it comes out on DVD (yeah, I'm also the "You don't have a Blue-Ray player yet?" guy) (there's hope for me yet, the home theater/play room is getting close to completion). Enough rambling on already... last night, the kids and I sat down to watch The Lorax in the better than movie theater experience kind of way. You know, lights out, big bowl of popcorn, pillows and blankets and the three of us snuggled on the couch (that's the best part, kind of hard to do in theater seats). I can't remember if I read the book when I was little (I've put a lot of years on since then), so I wasn't sure what to expect, but Horton Hears a Who was awesome, so I had high expectations. I quickly learned while the popcorn was popping, that The Lorax was "shortish and oldish and brownish and mossy ... with a voice that was sharpish and bossy," how can you not love Dr. Seuss? I also learned that The Lorax (the book), in 1988, had a little bit of controversial involvement in a small town in California where some thought that the book was "unfair to the logging industry" (see Wikipedia The Lorax). Alright then, enough history and facts, here's my take on The Lorax. 1. The characters, well, I've always loved Dr. Seuss characters, they are fun and original. The Once-ler seems a little shady at first. As the story unfolds though, you realize he's more than that, he's a greedy industrialist bastard that doesn't give two shits about the environment. That is, until his precious supply of Truffula Trees runs out. In your face! But now we have a much larger problem, didn't they teach you about reforestation and Arbor Day in school? Apparently not. It does make you think about all of the industries today that are scraping precious material and life from our planet... fishing, mining, oil (that black gold we just can't seem to get away from), lumber, Alaskan King Crab (that Discovery show we can live without). Hopefully the CEO's of these companies have seen this movie. 2. Thneeds. Yeah, something everyone just has to have. As I sit here writing, I'm looking around the house. I just had to have that plasma TV, I just had to have Diet Caffeine Free Pepsi, this laptop I'm typing on, the list goes on and on. It goes back to the differentiation of want and need. I do need food to cook, clothes on my back-but even buried in these needs are wants, I want a certain brand of rice, I want only name brand designer clothes (not really unless you look at my winter coat collection or cowboy boot collection). It really boils down to marketing, those annoying commercials, the especially annoying ones on the kids channels during our 30 minute TV time before bed, "Daddy, I need that toy!" Well, I actually bet you don't really need that toy, but you can want that toy as much as you please. 3. Political corruption and greed. How did I get that out of The Lorax? Easy, the Mayor of Thneed-Ville. He immediately masks the outside world and fills the city with artificial, "protecting" his happy citizens and then takes advantage of them by selling bottled oxygen. For fear of starting a political frenzy, I'll just leave this one alone. I have my political views and you can have yours, but you can't deny that there is certainly corruption and greed. I'm reading Me the People by Kevin Bleyer right now which tells the tale of our Constitution birth (and Bleyer's quest to rewrite it), even as our country was getting it's feet wet, there was corruption and greed. Enough said, moving on... 4. Truffula Trees, they are just so cool looking. They look soft and fluffy and I want to climb right up in one and take a nap. They remind me of probably my favorite tree, the Mimosa. I like the wispy-ness of the leaves, kid of fanning out like a fern. And my other favorites, the Magnolia for it's grandiose flowers and sweet sweet aroma, and of course, the Weeping Willow, how can you not love this tree? 5. Illumination Entertainment, wow, I'm amazed at the CG work in this film. And they are relatively new, having only recently been formed in 2007, and still a pretty short list of films. Technology sure has changed, CG movies haven't been around for that long and have advanced exponentially. Sure, CG has been around since the 60's, but full feature length CG animated films really only started to take shape in 1995 with Toy Story, although LucasFilm made some pretty good headway in the 80's and a host of other motion picture companies made great advances in probably two of the hardest aspects of CG, human animation, especially facial, and realistic CG water (in movies such as Water World, The Abyss) followed by advances in digital puppetry (RoboCop 2, Terminator 2) in the 90's. Will there be a day when we will not need human actors? Hmm, that might change a lot of the "I need to have that because so and so, the famous actress has one." 6. Audrey, ahhh, she's dreamy (and bundled with Taylor Swift's voice). I wonder what made her want to see a live tree. OK, I wonder why a lot of women want what they want, so next topic. 7. The Lorax, the list would not be complete without (him?). I enjoyed how he kind of picked himself up by the seat of his pants and flew away. I could go on for hours the times I've been in situations and just wanted to pick myself up and "Dear God, make me a bird. So I could fly far. Far far away from here" (Yep, Forrest Gump). 8. Unless. Unless someone cares, the situation will not improve. 9. “When a guy does something stupid once it's because he's a guy, but if he does the same stupid thing twice, that's usually to impress a girl.” This has to be my favorite line in the movie. I wonder if the opposite is true? Wait for it... I think it is. So this past week I took my puppy to the vet. The technician must have had one of these moments as the third time she came in (for no reason) I received, "Can I ask you a question?" Thinking it had something to do with how many months of flea control I wanted to get or something, I said sure. Her question cause a slight jaw drop that bounced off the floor a few times before returning to the proper location. "You are a little goofy looking, but cute, would you be interested in dinner?" Now this doesn't sound totally stupid, but what she doesn't know is that I just don't date, so first stupid thing. I couldn't help myself, I mean, yeah, I could do dinner, so we exchanged numbers, I mean, how can you resist a line like that? So she called and asked about dinner again (second stupid thing), and I couldn't resist the persistence, so it is what it is. But I don't date, so we'll see. 10. You very rarely see something in life that is truly spectacular. And if you do, or when you do, and the moment is over, or it's gone, you question what you witnessed or experienced.  You wonder if it was real, search for it's authenticity. This has nothing to do with any specific aspect of The Lorax, just something that's been sitting in my head for awhile. We've all witnessed or experienced something awesome, rainbows,  the birth of a child, a quiet walk in the park, the power of the ocean, I'm sure you have yours that you are thinking about right now. I used to believe in taking pictures of everything, I no longer do (it's not that I don't take pictures anymore, just not as many, and not for the reason of preserving history, my history is safe inside my head). I used to believe that if I didn't see it, it didn't happen, I no longer believe that. I believe in so much more now. So there you have it, my non movie review of a movie, I'm sure I need all the proper credits listed for legal purposes and all that jazz... just consider them there, I'm tired and think I'll go find dream land. Cheers my friends!

A moment

It's when I want to talk to you But too tired to have a conversation To pour a drink But the liquor is over there To kiss you gently But scared to touch your lips To hold hands and take a walk But my legs don't always work To fall asleep next to you In a different room