Mr. Weston is shown in the Emma films, but kind of passed over to be only a minor character. We see him as the one who takes Miss Taylor away, as she becomes Mrs. Weston, an act that encourages Emma to believe she can control others lives and make them fall in love.
We see him again as the father of Frank, encouraging him to visit and (pair up with Emma), but that’s really all.
However, Jane Austen never goes halfway on a project and devoted much more time and a whole chapter on his sad back story. Mr. Weston is an incredibly dear man, who’s story is actually pretty heartbreaking. So grab your tissues and get ready for it.
So Mr Weston was born into a pretty well off family, that with every generation rose higher in respectability and gentility. He received a good education, and instead of pursuing business like his brothers, he decided to join the military.
As Captain Weston he was invited into many homes, meeting a wealthy, beautiful woman, Miss Churchill.
It was love at first sight. Everyone approved except Mrs. Churchill (mother) and Mr. Churchill (brother). You see the Churchills were of a higher stock and thought that marrying into military was so far below them.
It didn’t matter to Miss Churchill and she refused to listen to her relatives, only having eyes for Mr. Weston. She married Mr. Weston anyways, and because she disobeyed her family (and wasn’t in total control of her wealth) her relatives disowned her and refused to give her a single penny.
Even though Mr. Weston was an incredibly kind and sweet man, the marriage was unhappy. Now as Mrs. Weston, she found herself unhappy as they couldn’t afford the lifestyle she was used to. They lived beyond there income and nothing was as great as when she was Miss Churchill.
Three years after they were married, Mrs. Weston died leaving Mr. Weston in great debt and with a baby to take care of.
So this is the extreme low point for Mr. Weston. He has done everything in his power to take care of his wife and make her happy, but nothing is good enough. Then she becomes sick and dies and now he has incredible debt, horrible grief, and a baby to take care of.
He is completely unsure of what to do, when Mr. and Mrs. Churchill come snaking in and ask for the child. Poor Mr. Weston, how he must have felt being asked to give up his child. But he does as he knows it is the best thing for him. The Churchills (his late wife’s brother’s family) have no children of their own and are quite wealthy. They could give his son Frank everything, stability, two parents, education, toys, horses, etc. So he does it. It makes sense, but it still breaks his heart.
This always reminds me of Vanity Fair, by William Makepeace Thackery, when widowed Amelia holds onto her son as long as she can, but when she realizes that she won’t be able to truly care for his needs she gives him to his rich relatives to rear instead. It is such a heartbreaking scene.
Mr. Weston decides to start over, moving to Highbury and working with his brothers. He begans to build everything up again, but he doesn’t send for his child as he knows the other family is more stable and he wants Frank to grow up with every advantage.
Meanwhile as Frank is reared by his uncle and is set to inherit everything, he wants to be adopted by him and go by Churchill instead of Weston. How much that must of hurt to not only lost your son’s childhood, but adulthood as well to another person.
Mr. Weston does see his son every year, and the two have a relationship. But poor Mr. Weston, to lose the role of father, and instead be more of an uncle.
But even with all these hardships, Mr. Weston has such a positive outlook on life and believes that he will build his life up, and marry again one day.
And so his tale does have a happy ending, as this poor, broken, lonely man is able to find true love once again; in Miss Taylor. A woman who doesn’t need fancy trappings or riches, but just a home and Mr. Weston.
Hercules (1997) is based on the greek myths but given a Disneyian twist. This is one of my favorite Disney films as it is fun, hilarious, and has an awesome collection of songs.
In this story, Zeus and Hera are the parents of Hercules. When he is born they have a huge party, give him lots of gifts, like a pegasus, and have everyone come. Unbeknownst to the happy couple, Zeus’ brother Hades, lord of the Underworld, wants to dethrone him and take over Olympus and the world. He meets with the Fates and discovers that his plans will work out in 18 years as he will be able to release the titans. Only one problem…Hercules. If he fights, game over for Hades. So Hades hatches a plot to poison Hercules and make him mortal. Hades’ minions give Hercules the potion, but fail to give him every last drop, making him mortal but leaving him with super strength. Hercules is found by an old couple who were unable to have children. The couple see him as a gift from the gods and raise him.
Fast forward through the years and Hercules is a teenager. He doesn’t have very many friends and people don’t really like him as he doesn’t know how to control his strength and causes a lot of damage, all on accident. After a truly horrible mishap, Hercules’ parents tell him the truth about how they found him. Hercules travels to Zeus’ Temple in order to ask for guidance and discovers that Zeus is his father! Zeus tells him that he was stolen as a child, made mortal, and cannot return to Olympus until he becomes a “true hero”. Zeus sends him to Philoctetes, a satyr, to train him.
Hercules spends a long time training on Philoctetes’ island. As they are heading to Thebes, to put his training to good use, they make a stop to help out a damsel, Megra or Meg. Meg doesn’t want his help as she feels she isn’t really a damsel in distress.
But Hercules helps her out anyway. After he leaves, we discover that Meg is working with Hades. When Hades finds out that Hercules is alive he makes it his mission to send every kind of creature he can to him in order to utterly destroy Hercules.
After Hades runs out of creatures and as the time is getting close, he decides to try something new. He promises to free Meg from her contract with him, IF she can discover Hercules’ weakness. So Meg goes out with Hercules. Through their time together she discovers that she is starting to have feelings for him, after she said she would never love again.
Hades figures out that Hercules feels the same way about Meg and uses it to his advantage. Hades chains Meg up in order to get Hercules to agree to give up his strength for 24 hours, all the time Hades needs to take over Olympus. Now it’s up to Hercules to figure out how to get his powers back and help save the world.
********Most Romantic Moment********
For me the most romantic moment happens after Hercules has traded his powers. The trade was that as long as Meg is safe, Hercules is super strength free. So Hercules finds himself a mere man while the whole area is in peril from Titans. Hades especially sends a cyclops to ensure that Hercules is taken out. As Hercules trips the cyclops in order to destroy it, the cyclops accidentally knocks over some columns. As one is heading for him, Meg pushes him out of the way and gets hit with it; sacrificing herself for him and breaking his contract with Hades.
Now I know most people who have seen this movie would think that the scene when Hercules offers his life for Meg or refuses Olympus to be with Meg as more romantic, but I disagree. You see both of those actions were perfectly normal and ordinary for Hercules. He was a sweet and really nice guy. Everything he did, he always did for other people, hardly thinking of himself. That’s the type of person he is.
Now with Meg, her sacrifice is HUGE!!! First, we have to back up and tell her story. So she sold her soul to Hades in order to help her boyfriend. Now we don’t know exactly why, as the writers don’t go into it, but for her to sell her soul you know that her boyfriend has something really bad going down. Death, imprisonment, etc. Had to be some hardcore stuff.
So after she sells her soul to save him he dumps her for another woman!
I know what a jerk!
She SOLD HER SOUL!!!!
So after all that she decided she will never love again.
Afterwards she became sarcastic, cold-hearted, and uncaring. Set on doing her own thing, no matter what situation she gets into. She thinks that’s the end of the story. No more love and no more heart, but she’s wrong.
So meets Hercules and he is nothing like she has ever seen. At first she thinks it is all an act and doesn’t trust him, but after encountering him multiple times she starts to like him. And is actually pretty nice to him. She takes him out on Hades’ command and tries to get the dirt on him, but finds nothing. And by the end of it, if she had found out anything she never would have told Hades anyway.
By the time she realizes the mistake she made, it’s too late. Hades has used her in his plot. Meg tries to warn Hercules, but is unable to. When Hades reveals how she worked for him, Meg knows that it’s over and she has no hope of changing any of it. She could just leave, she could just walk away, but she stays with him because she loves him and cares for him. She willingly lays down her life to save him knowing they had zero future, but doing it anyway because she loves and cares for him.
So many of you might remember the post I did a year ago on Ringu, the original Japanese film. I had watched Ringu because I had heard that it was far creepier and better version that the American one. However, I found that to be false, with The Ring being the creepier one of the two. This was mostly due to the actors, some story changes, and a better explanation of Samarra. But more than anything else, my own personal connection to the film (I’ll mention that at the end).
So I was home alone one night (my roommates were all out of town for the weekend) and decided that I would spend the night in watching films. I had spotted this at the library and decided that it was perfect film for the occasion. I decided that instead of watching it alone in the living room, I would watch it in my room with the lights off. You know, set the “creepy mood”.
So the story is pretty similar to the Japanese film. You have two girls who are talking about a cabin weekend that one of the girls, Katie, had gone to. Suddenly the topic of a cursed videotape comes up. If you watch this tape you will die in seven days. After her niece dies, the main character, Rachel (Naomi Watts) starts tracking down what caused her death and gets caught up in a supernatural mystery. (For more info check out Ringu or watch the film).
So what made this film much creepier than the original? Let’s get started.
1. Lighting/Set Design
I’m not sure where the story takes place but it is always raining and gloomy. Plus the camera crew gave the whole movie this blue tint when filming which also adds to the creepiness/horror film feel to it.
2. The Kid
In the first film Yoshi wasn’t really in the film that much. He had the nightmares and could hear his cousin “calling” to him, but that was mostly it. He watches the video, which leads his mother to try even harder to discover how to stop it. He then gets dropped off at his grandfather’s house for a bit and we don’t see him until the end of the film.
In the remake this kid is SUPER CREEPY
He’s kinda like Cole from The Sixth Sense, that is if Cole wasn’t a cutie. I mean this kid is an uber creep as he only talks in monotone, and doesn’t act like a kid at all-more like a 30 year old man. To top it off he even draws strange murderous pictures. Horrifying.
3) The Video
So The Ring came out four years after Ringu and had much better special effects, not gonna lie about that. And the video was much more creepy in this film. Freaky, emphasis on the FREAK.
4. Samara/Background Explanation
So in the original film we don’t get a full background on her. We find out that a professor was looking into studies of mental telepathy and other things like that. He found a woman that has this ability and the two end up having a child that for some reason is more powerful, and CRAZY! The main character’s ex-husband also just happens to have this ability. That’s it. That’s all we get.
How does it pass down? Why does the husband have it? Is that why they got a divorce? Why was the girl so much stronger? Why did she kill all the horses?
In the remake they give her a weirder background that explains her murderous tendencies. She was almost drowned as a baby, taken away from her family, and then put into social services. She has a history of trying to get attention/be the center of attention. She was adopted by a couple that really wanted kids but she was unlike anything they had ever seen. She started to develop these powers that freaked out her parents as she was getting into their minds.
She goes to a psychiatric hospital and is questioned and treated, causing her to react as a kid would with anger. She kills her doctor and gets sent back home to the horse ranch.
To prevent her from harming anyone, they put her up in the barn away from everyone else with only a TV set. This makes her very angry.
She gets very jealous and kills all the horses by making them go insane. To her adoptive mother, Anna, those were her children. She loved them and cared for them. She has a complete mental breakdown and gets sent to a sanatarium. After she is released the family goes to the mountains and she kills Samarra by throwing her down a well, and them committing suicide herself.
It may be strange, but explains things a whole lot more than the original. Plus it is very creepy.
So personal connection.
As I mentioned earlier, I was home alone. I had 5 housemates; 3 were staying the night at their boyfriends house and 2 had gone home to see her parents. My actual roommate had gone home to see her parents and wasn’t coming back until the next day. Instead of chilling in the living room, I took my food into my bedroom, along with the film.
So I was watching the film and had just gotten to the part when Rachel has watched the tape and received the call that in seven days she will die. Just as she has hung up her phone, my phone rings!
I pause the film and reach for the phone, shakily saying hello as its ringing scared the bejeezus out of me.
It was just my sister. She had an idea for something and wanted to bounce it off me.
So I go back to watching the film. As I reach the part when Samarra comes out of the TV
My door starts to open.
So let me explain campus security. The dorms I was living in were like townhouses. They had 4 bedrooms-2 singles & 2 doubles. Every student was given an ID card that held campus money, allowed us to check out books, go into the rec center & dining hall, and most importantly our rooms. We had two doors to the dorms that were set to only accept the cards of the people of the house. Besides running your card through the slot (like a debit card) each member of the house had a unique four-digit number to gain access. A card wasn’t enough, you had to use your code as well. Plus the code had to match the card or else you were out of luck.
To make that even more impressive, every room was encoded to only accept the occupant’s card. My roommate and I were the only ones who could into my room, unless someone had one of our cards. (The codes were only for the front & back doors.)
So you can see why I was freaked out. Everyone had made plans to be gone, defintely be gone. But yet here was my door opening and someone or something entering.
It being really dark and the fact that the rooms were L-shaped (therefore making it hard to see “who” was exactly coming in through the door) didn’t help that much.
Of course, as I’m sure you all have figured out by now it was just my roommate. It turns out she had changed her mind and decided to come home early.
This experience made the film much more exciting, although anything that happened in the film afterward that last scare was pretty anti-climatic.
So It was a pretty great film and I suggest you check it out.
And I’m not just trying to pass it off to save myself from being killed. LOL
Day 26) Your Favorite Disney Original Movie (DCOM)
Now when I was a kid we actually had great shows on TV; such as Boy Meets World, Even Stevens, Sister Sister, Lizzie McGuire, etc. Not like today:
I mean Dog with a Blog? Really? Really Disney? Jessie, ANT Farm, etc. all suck.
Best the best thing was the DCOMs. I loved the Friday nights when they would show these awesome films. So instead of picking just one film, as that is far too difficult, I’m going to list out my favs.
16) The Paper Brigade (1997)
Gunther is new in town and trying to fit in. He wants to go to a concert, with the school hottie, and tries to find a way to make the cash. He gets a paper brigade and is rolling in the dough, (I remember thinking, do paperboys really make that much money?). Some bullies try to take him down and in true Braveheartfashion, he defends his turf.
15) Under Wraps (1997)
This was a hilarious film about three kids discovering a mummy. I won’t say any more because I will be talking about this film more this October during Horrorfest III. Come back and check it out.
14) Johnny Tsunami (1999)
Johnny a surfing Hawaiian boy who is forced to move from his surf and sunny beaches for ice-cold Vermont. There he finds himself sticking out in a town full of snowboarders or skiers. He clashes with the others, but also befriends one snowboarder. He and a skier have a fight over the school hottie, and race against each other to win rights.
13) Brink (1998)
When I was growing up I had a huge crush on the movie surfer Erik von Detten, so I was totally into this film as it starred him. This film is about rollerblading, which every kid in the ’90s loved (whether or not they actually could roller blade). It actually is based on the book Hans Brinker and the Silver Skates, one of my favs as a kid.
So Andy “Brink” Brink, is a great skater who does it for the love of the sport. When his family falls on hard financial times, he sells out and joins Team X-Bladz, changing as he gets money and fame. Eventually Brink realizes his mistakes and who his real friends are, leaving the X-Bladz.
12) Susie Q (1996)
Story of a 1950s girl who is killed on her prom night in a car crash, only to have her spirit reawaken 40 years later to make sure that her parents don’t lose their house. Meanwhile, Zach is an everyday high school student who is dealing with the death of his dad and a move to a new town. His family moves into Susie’s house, where he finds her charm bracelet which enables him to see and communicate with her. The two team up with his little hacker sister and try to take on the evil guy who is trying to kick people out of their homes so he can set up a shopping mall. It is a hilarious film! I remember that I loved the story, and her dress, along with the fact that the pink ranger was in it.
11) The Thirteenth Year (1999)
I have to admit I went through a phase where I thought I too was going to turn into a mermaid, and what better to increase my interest/obsession than this film? So the story is about popular, top swimmer, Cody and how during his 13th birthday he starts turning into a mermaid or merman.
He was adopted as a baby and only now is transforming as 13 is when mermaids become adults (no wonder Ariel was like I’m an adult I’m in love). His friend Sean tries to hep him understand what’s going on, when they soon face the bigger threat of people discovering his abilities and trying to do experiments on him. Everything is eventually resolved with him deciding that he will take turns living with both parents (adopted and his mer-mother who finds him).
10) Alley Cats Strike (2000)
This was a big fav as a kid. I absolutely loved this film and Kyle Schmid (I feel like I say that a looot). So Alex (Schmid), Elisa, Delia, and Ken are these kids who are into retro clothing and bowling, (not very in crowd). Everything changes for them when their school competes in a series of athletic events for the town trophy and finds themselves tied. The tiebreaker is determined to be bowling. Todd, the most popular and athletic kid in school, joins the team to lead the group to victory. Only prob is, he sucks. The team struggles to fit him in, as they find him causing trouble within the group.
9) Mom’s Got a Data With a Vampire (2000)
Love this film so much. Some kids accidentally set their mom up on a date with a Vampire and have to save her from being killed! It is an awesome film and I will talk about more during Horrorfest III. Check back this October.
8) Teen Beach Movie (2013)
Okay so this is a new DCOM, and I know it totally contradicts my earlier rant about Disney sucking today, but I just loved this film. When I was growing up, ’60s Beach movies were my absolute favorite. I loved Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello. The songs, the campiness of it all. So when I saw Disney was going to do a parody film, I was super excited!
So this isn’t the first time this has been done. Sabrina the Teenage Witch did an episode where they go to Florida for Spring Break and have “Good, clean, fun.” In this film, Brady (Ross Lynch) and his girlfriend Mack are having loads of fun surfing, until Brady finds out that Mack is going away to finishing school. When the two ride a 40-foot wave, they find themselves in Brady’s favorite film, the 1960s Wet Side Story. Hilarity ensues as the two find themselves in the middle of a biker and surfer fight, singing, surfing, and having some “good, clean, fun.”
Cute guys, great music, and absolutely fabulous 1960s clothes.
7) Smart House (1999)
I loved this movie so much as a kid! I totally wanted this house, I thought it would be so cool to live there (you know before it went crazy). But this film holds an even greater place in my heart as it truly captures my childhood/pre-teen time of my life. The music, clothes, food, etc.
So in this film this engineer/computer scientist creates a program that runs a house to fulfill your every command. She holds a contest to get the house, in which Ben Cooper and his family win. Even though Mrs. Cooper died a while ago, Ben becomes angry when his father begins dating the house designer, Sara Barnes. He tweaks with the program so it is more motherly, creating a dangerous machine that tries to imprison them. This film is also surprisingly based on a literary work, “The Veldt” by Ray Bradbury. I loved the idea of having a house like this, along with having a huge crush on Ryan Merriman.
6) Luck of the Irish (2001)
Disney plays this film every March 17th, and I am so glad as it is hilarious. Kyle is the golden child; captain of the basketball team, straight-A student, and Lady Luck always seems to be smiling down at him. However that all changes when Kyle’s lucky coin is stolen from him. He then discovers that his mother’s family are leprechauns and that coin held their family luck, also allowing them to walk about the Earth looking like normal humans. With his mom shrinking, and him becoming shorter and more leperchauny ever minute, he sets out to track down the thief and restore his family luck.
So I love this film, and I actually have another post all detailed on it. I had a huge crush on Ryan Merriman, leprechaun or human
This story is about two sisters; the elder being pretty and popular, while the younger brainy, short, and insecure. The two wish to be the other as each thinks the other has an easy life. But when their wish comes true and they switch bodies, they discover that there is more to each other than they originally thought. I just love the portrayal of their relationships and how they are able to work through their problems and bond in the end.
4) Stepsister from Planet Weird (2000)
So in this film two gas formed aliens flee their country for Earth. There the father, Earth name Cosmo Cola, meets Earth woman Kathy Larson and the two fall in love deciding to get married. Kathy’s daughter doesn’t want this to happen as she finds Cosmo and his daughter Ariel to be freaks. Ariel doesn’t want her father to fall in love and marry Kathy as she still hopes to return home, and to her boyfriend Fanul. It is a hilarious film as the aliens try to adapt to Earth and end up having to save the planet.
I just love how cool Ariel seems to everyone, when she isn’t even trying. but just being herself (thank you Disney). I also copied the layered look from her, which did become a major thing. But I have to say the biggest takeaway for me was her line “I fear the wind.” Since they are gas forms, they hate the wind as it kills them. My sis and I would go around saying that every time it was windy, especially when it messed with our hair.
3) Motorcrossed (2001)
This is a modern retelling of Twelfth Nightand is one of my absolute favs. When Andrew is injured and can’t compete in the motorcross competition and the family is in trouble, Andrea cuts her hair and pretends to be Andrew to save the day. Of course, problems arise as she can’t have anyone find out who she is, and starts to fall in love with her friend who thinks she’s a guy.
I loved this movie so much as a kid. My love for it was so great that I sat through its excruciating painful sequels. So this film is about Zenon, girl of the 21st century who lives in a Space Station. She gets in trouble and is grounded (literally as she is sent to earth). While there she discovers an evil plot to destroy the space station, and has to do all she can to save her home. I loved the story, clothes, and expressions used in this film. It was an amazing piece. And after the film came out I used to say this all the time (and still do):
And who could forget this wonderful song?
1) Phantom of the Megaplex
This has to be my favorite DCOM of all! I loved this film so much as a kid! There are so many amazing things involved in it! It’s a very well done modern version of the Phantom of the Opera. It also references so many other movies, that it just makes a cinephile like me squeal in delight! I also had the hugest crush on the lead, Taylor Handley. I was like 8 or 9 and in love with him. I actually reviewed this film during Horrorfest, so I will keep the synopsis short as you should really check it out.
So the film is about Taylor Handley’s character, Pete Riley, who is assistant manager at the megaplex and is getting ready for a huge film premiere, Midnight Mayhem, at the theater. However, chaos rains down throughout the night as a phantom lurks and tries to cause destruction.