Alice in Wonderland
Alice, an unpretentious and individual 19-year-old, is betrothed to a dunce of an English nobleman. At her engagement party, she escapes the crowd to consider whether to go through with the marriage and falls down a hole in the garden after spotting an unusual rabbit. Arriving in a strange and surreal place called "Underland," she finds herself in a world that resembles the nightmares she had as a child, filled with talking animals, villainous queens and knights, and frumious bandersnatches. Alice realizes that she is there for a reason--to conquer the horrific Jabberwocky and restore the rightful queen to her throne.
When a green ogre named Shrek discovers his swamp has been 'swamped' with all sorts of fairytale creatures by the scheming Lord Farquaad, Shrek sets out with a very loud donkey by his side to 'persuade' Farquaad to give Shrek his swamp back. Instead, a deal is made. Farquaad, who wants to become the King, sends Shrek to rescue Princess Fiona, who is awaiting her true love in a tower guarded by a fire-breathing dragon. But once they head back with Fiona, it starts to become apparent that not only does Shrek, an ugly ogre, begin to fall in love with the lovely princess, but Fiona is also hiding a huge secret.
When Coraline moves to an old house, she feels bored and neglected by her parents. She finds a hidden door with a bricked up passage. During the night, she crosses the passage and finds a parallel world where everybody has buttons instead of eyes, with caring parents and all her dreams coming true. When the Other Mother invites Coraline to stay in her world forever, the girl refuses and finds that the alternate reality where she is trapped is only a trick to lure her.
In a castle high on top of a hill lives an inventor's greatest creation - Edward, a near-complete person. The creator died before he could finish Edward's hands; instead, he is left with metal scissors for hands. Since then, he has lived alone, until a kind lady called Peg discovers him and welcomes him into her home. At first, everyone welcomes him into the community, but soon things begin to take a change for the worse.
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
In the Victorian London, the barber Benjamin Barker is married to the gorgeous Lucy and they have a lovely child, Johanna. The beauty of Lucy attracts the attention of the corrupt Judge Turpin, who falsely accuses the barber of a crime that he did not commit and abuses Lucy later after gaining custody of her. After fifteen years in exile, Benjamin returns to London under the new identity of Sweeney Todd, seeking revenge against Turpin. He meets the widow Mrs. Lovett who is the owner of a meat pie shop who tells him that Lucy swallowed arsenic many years ago, and Turpin assigned himself tutor of Johanna. He opens a barber shop above her store, initiating a crime rampage against those who made him suffer and lose his beloved family.
In Manhattan, the lawyer Liv and the school teacher Emma have been best friends since their childhood. They both are proposed to by their boyfriends on the same day and they plan their wedding parties in Plaza Hotel, using the services of the famous Marion St. Claire. However, due to Marion's secretary's mistake, their weddings are scheduled for the same day. None of them agrees to change the date and they become enemies, trying to sabotage the wedding party of the rival.
The Nightmare Before Christmas
Jack Skellington, the pumpkin king of Halloween Town, is bored with doing the same thing every year for Halloween. One day he stumbles into Christmas Town, and is so taken with the idea of Christmas that he tries to get the resident bats, ghouls, and goblins of Halloween Town to help him put on Christmas instead of Halloween -- but alas, they can't get it quite right.
Set back in the late 1800s in a Victorian village, a man and woman by the names of Victor Van Dort and Victoria Everglot are betrothed because the Everglots need the money or else they'll be living on the streets and the Van Dorts want to be high in society. But when things go wrong at the wedding rehearsal, Victor goes into the woods to practice his vows. Just as soon as he gets them right, he finds himself married to Emily, the corpse bride. While Victoria waits on the other side, there's a rich newcomer that may take Victor's place. So two brides, one groom, who will Victor pick?
The House Bunny
Finding family. Shelley Darlingson was raised in an orphanage, finally happy when she blossoms into a fox and moves into the Playboy Mansion. Unfortunately, she's summarily expelled on her 27th birthday(she's now too old). In desperation she takes a job as house mother for a sorority of misfits losing their house for lack of members. They have but a few months to find 30 pledges, or a sorority of mean girls will take over their place. Shelley figures that girls will pledge a house that boys find interesting, so she sets out to make the Zetas alluring, not act too smart, and host great parties. Can she succeed, and what about her own makeover? Sabotage is everywhere, plus it's hard to be one's self.
It is a normal day for everyone, until President of the United States James Dale (Jack Nicholson) announces Martians have been spotted circling Earth. The Martians land and a meeting is arranged, but not everything goes to plan, and the Martians seem to have other plans for Earth. Are they just misunderstood beings or do they really want to destroy all of humanity?
Nerdy, reserved bookworm Needy Lesnicki, and arrogant, conceited cheerleader Jennifer Check are best friends, though they share little in common. They share even less in common when Jennifer mysteriously gains an appetite for human blood after a disastrous fire at a local bar. As Needy's male classmates are steadily killed in gruesome attacks, the young girl must uncover the truth behind her friend's transformation and find a way to stop the bloodthirsty rampage before it reaches her own boyfriend Chip.
Alex is boarding a plane to France on a school trip, when he suddenly gets a premonition that the plane will explode. Shortly after Alex, a group of students, and his teacher are thrown off the plane, to their horror, the plane does in fact explode. Alex must now work out Death's plan, as each of the survivors falls victim. Whilst trying to prevent the next death, Alex must also dodge the FBI, who believe that he caused the explosion.
Queen of the Damned
After losing interest in immortality, vampire Lestat goes to sleep, awakening after a long time to the sounds of punk rock. Taking up as the leader of an undead band, Lestat gains fame but exposes vampires, drawing the attention of vampire enthusiast Jesse. His music also awakens the queen of the damned, Akasha the first vampire, who decides to make Lestat her king. After learning of her bloodlust, and designs to take over humankind, Lestat teams with the other vampire nobility to take her down. Lestat then turns Jesse into his undead mistress to spend eternity together.
Massie Block is the leader of a small group of privileged schoolgirls who arrogantly call themselves 'The Pretty Committee'. These so-called pre-teen 'mean girls' (cynical, egotistical, selfish and narcissistic females) and their clique are respected and feared in their middle school as well as their upper class Rhode Island suburban neighborhood. But Massie's life takes an unexpected turn when her parents friends, a lower-middle class family with a self-assured daughter named Claire move into the Block's guest house and Claire threatens to undermine the superficial Massie's position of the clique.
Just My Luck
In Manhattan, Ashley Albright is a lucky woman and very successful in the agency where she works. The clumsy Jake Hardin is an unlucky aspirant manager of the rock band McFly, who is unsuccessfully trying to contact the entrepreneur Damon Phillips to promote his band. When Ashley meets Jake in a masquerade party, they kiss each other, swapping her fortune with his bad luck.
A tale told over four seasons, starting in autumn when Juno, a 16-year-old high-school junior in Minnesota, discovers she's pregnant after one event in a chair with her best friend, Bleeker. In the waiting room of an abortion clinic, the quirky and whip-sharp Juno decides to give birth and to place the child with an adoptive couple. She finds one in the PennySaver personals, contacts them, tells her dad and step-mother, and carries on with school. The chosen parents, upscale yuppies (one of whom is cool and laid back, the other meticulous and uptight), meet Juno, sign papers, and the year unfolds. Will Juno's plan work, can she improvise, and what about Bleeker?
The cynical and skeptical writer Mike Enslin writes books evaluating supernatural phenomena in hotels, graveyards and other haunted places, usually debunking the mystery. While writing his latest book, he travels from Los Angeles to New York to spend one night in the Dolphin Hotel's posessed room 1408, which is permanently unavailable for guests. The reluctant manager Mr. Gerald Olin objects to his request and offers an upgrade, expensive booze and finally relates the death of more than fifty guests over decades in the cursed room. However Mike threatens Mr. Olin, promising to sue the hotel, and is finally allowed to check into the room. Later in the night, he finds that guests of room 1408, once they have checked in, might never leave the room alive.
When May was a child, she was a lonely girl with a lazy eye and without any friends except a strange, homemade doll kept in a glass case given by her mother on her birthday. May becomes a lonely, weird young woman, working in an animal hospital and assisting the veterinarian in surgeries and sewing operated animals most of the time. Her lesbian colleague Polly has a sort of attraction for her. When the shy May meets the mechanic Adam Stubbs, she loves his hands and has a crush on him. They date, but the bizarre behavior of May one night pushes Adam away from her. Alone, May has a brief affair with Polly, but she feels rejected again when her colleague meets Ambrosia. When her doll is accidentally broken, the deranged May decides to build a friend for her, using the best parts her acquaintances can offer.
Mystery Science Theater 3000
When zany mad scientist Dr. Clayton Forrester and his loopy assistant Frank get bored with their work at the Deep Thirteen research center, they kidnap Joel the janitor and shoot him into orbit on the Satellite of Love. While in space Joel builds wacky robot sidekicks Tom Servo and Crow T. Robot to help him withstand an onslaught of grade 'Z' movies that the mad scientists force him to watch.
Computer geek Dexter Douglas (David Haufman) turns into uncontrollable, unpredictable superhero Freakazoid (Paul Rugg), who dons red long underwear, blue skin, and weird hair. The transformation occurs while Dexter surfs on the internet. As a superhero, he fights crime whenever he sees it perpetrated by goofy villains, with his friends Steff (Tracy Rowe) and Sergeant Mike Cosgrove (Edward Asner).
Jerrica Benton is the owner of Starlight Music and the Starlight Foundation, which is a foster home for young girls. But by using her earrings to project a holographic image over herself, she is transformed into her alter ego Jem, the lead singer for the successful music group, Jem and the Holograms. Other members of the group are Jerrica's sensitive little sister Kimber, the strong-willed Aja, and the creative Shana. The group's rivals are The Misfits, made up of the cold-hearted Pizzazz, the tough-acting Roxy, and the humble Stormer. Jem and her friends are always involved in glamorous and exciting adventures around the world, while touching people's hearts with their hit songs.
In the east village, the twentysomething guy, Alex finally moves into this own apartment in New York City's East Village. There he finds that single life is not a walk in the park as he deals with urban life, his boring job at the copy shop, his irritating friends, his selfish sister and his crush on an unattainable goth girl. Yet, for all the troubles, life in the city is still worth it.
After being recruited to a secretive academy, a group of students discover that the magic they read about as children is very real, and more dangerous than they ever imagined. But, will getting hooked on the thrill of magic distract them from honing their powers when they need them most?
The Adventures of Teddy Ruxpin
Illiop Teddy Ruxpin (Illiops being bear-like creatures) leaves his homeland in Rillonia with his friend Grubby, an octopede, in search of adventure. They meet up with an inventor named Newton Gimmick who accompanies them on their quest for the Treasure of Grundo. What the Trio unexpectedly find are six crystals with different meanings and powers. These crystals, however, also can enable the Monsters and Villains Organization (MAVO) to have absolute power over the land, and the leader, Quellor, wants to make sure that an Illiop never possesses the crystals. Elsewhere, a less pronounced threat also routinely besieges the Trio, which is the wannabe villain Jack W. Tweeg, a greedy Troll-half Grunge who has huge hopes for joining MAVO. The sixty five episode series, based upon the tape-and-book toy bear Teddy Ruxpin, unfolds gradually, as the Trio meet up with more and more interesting and often friendly creatures and visit intriguing lands.
Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West
When Dorothy triumphed over the Wicked Witch of the West in L. Frank Baum's classic tale we heard only her side of the story. But what about her arch-nemesis, the mysterious Witch? Where did she come from? How did she become so wicked? And what is the true nature of evil?Gregory Maguire creates a fantasy world so rich and vivid that we will never look at Oz the same way again. Wicked is about a land where animals talk and strive to be treated like first-class citizens, Munchkinlanders seek the comfort of middle-class stability, and the Tin Man becomes a victim of domestic violence. And then there is the little green-skinned girl named Elphaba, who will grow up to become the infamous Wicked Witch of the West, a smart, prickly, and misunderstood creature who challenges all our preconceived notions about the nature of good and evil.An astonishingly rich re-creation of the land of Oz, this book retells the story of Elphaba, the Wicked Witch of the West, who wasn't so wicked after all. Taking readers past the yellow brick road and into a phantasmagoric world rich with imagination and allegory, Gregory Maguire just might change the reputation of one of the most sinister characters in literature.
A thrilling and original coming-of-age novel for adults about a young man practicing magic in the real world.Quentin Coldwater is brilliant but miserable. A senior in high school, he’s still secretly preoccupied with a series of fantasy novels he read as a child, set in a magical land called Fillory. Imagine his surprise when he finds himself unexpectedly admitted to a very secret, very exclusive college of magic in upstate New York, where he receives a thorough and rigorous education in the craft of modern sorcery. He also discovers all the other things people learn in college: friendship, love, sex, booze, and boredom. Something is missing, though. Magic doesn’t bring Quentin the happiness and adventure he dreamed it would. After graduation he and his friends make a stunning discovery: Fillory is real. But the land of Quentin’s fantasies turns out to be much darker and more dangerous than he could have imagined. His childhood dream becomes a nightmare with a shocking truth at its heart. At once psychologically piercing and magnificently absorbing, The Magicians boldly moves into uncharted literary territory, imagining magic as practiced by real people, with their capricious desires and volatile emotions. Lev Grossman creates an utterly original world in which good and evil aren’t black and white, love and sex aren’t simple or innocent, and power comes at a terrible price.
The Lies of Locke Lamora
In this stunning debut, author Scott Lynch delivers the wonderfully thrilling tale of an audacious criminal and his band of confidence tricksters. Set in a fantastic city pulsing with the lives of decadent nobles and daring thieves, here is a story of adventure, loyalty, and survival that is one part "Robin Hood", one part Ocean's Eleven, and entirely enthralling... An orphan's life is harsh — and often short — in the island city of Camorr, built on the ruins of a mysterious alien race. But born with a quick wit and a gift for thieving, Locke Lamora has dodged both death and slavery, only to fall into the hands of an eyeless priest known as Chains — a man who is neither blind nor a priest.A con artist of extraordinary talent, Chains passes his skills on to his carefully selected "family" of orphans — a group known as the Gentlemen Bastards. Under his tutelage, Locke grows to lead the Bastards, delightedly pulling off one outrageous confidence game after another. Soon he is infamous as the Thorn of Camorr, and no wealthy noble is safe from his sting.Passing themselves off as petty thieves, the brilliant Locke and his tightly knit band of light-fingered brothers have fooled even the criminal underworld's most feared ruler, Capa Barsavi. But there is someone in the shadows more powerful — and more ambitious — than Locke has yet imagined. Known as the Gray King, he is slowly killing Capa Barsavi's most trusted men — and using Locke as a pawn in his plot to take control of Camorr's underworld. With a bloody coup under way threatening to destroy everyone and everything that holds meaning in his mercenary life, Locke vows to beat the Gray King at his own brutal game — or die trying...
“Am I sure? Only as sure as I am that the reality of one night, let alone that of a whole lifetime, can ever be the whole truth.” \ \ The Bride (1918) by KlimtIt all begins with a confession of sorts as his wife Albertine tells him of a fantasy she had involving a man that she saw on their vacation. Fridolin also confesses that he had desired a young woman on the beach. It seems fairly harmless after all. When we marry, we don’t go numb from the waist down and the neck up. We continue to notice attractive people and continue to be titillated by charming and intelligent ones, as well. It could be a ruggedly handsome waiter in a restaurant or a pretty pearl wearing bartender or a French beret wearing poet or a saucy librarian with libidinous thoughts. There are a host of emotions that are involved with noticing that our spouse is interested in some other person. If it is one sided, it can just be amusing or mildly annoying. If the interest is reciprocated, then it can unleash a torrent of reactions from fear to pride to jealousy to finding your spouse that much more alluring because someone else recognized those qualities that you may have started to take for granted. Flirtations or mild crushes, in most cases, just adds a bit of spice to life. For Fridolin, this confession of his wife, even though his confession is very similar, unmoors him. It is as if the possibilities of his life are suddenly opening up to him, and women whom he met every day suddenly take on the glow of possibility. Soon after the dream confessions, Fridolin, who is a doctor,, is called out to a client in dire health. Unfortunately, his trip is for naught as the man has passed when he arrives. Thus begins one of the strangest evenings, an odyssey really, of Fridolin’s life. By the end of the night, he has met a series of women, all women who are interested in sleeping with him and all whom he would like to sleep with. In thinking about which he would prefer, he canot decide. ”To the little Pierrette? Or to the little trollop in the Buchfeldgasse? Or to Marianne, the daughter of the dead Court Counsellor?” It does not matter for they are all about to be replaced by a woman he is on the verge of meeting in precarious circumstances. ”Fridolin was intoxicated, and not merely by her presence, her fragrant body and burning red lips, nor by the atmosphere of the room and the aura of lascivious secrets that surrounded him; he was at once thirsty and delirious, made so by all the adventures of the night, none of which had led to anything, by his own audacity, and by the sea-change he felt within himself. He stretched out and touched the veil covering her head, as though intended to remove it.”He has fallen into a secret sex club with the help of his piano playing friend Nachtigall. He isn’t supposed to be there. He was never supposed to meet this woman with the burning red lips. He is supposed to be home with his wife and daughter. Though it is an evening fraught with sexual possibilities, he is like a man walking through a museum admiring the intriguing paintings, but touching none of them. His wife has more dreams to confess. \ \ Look at all that hair the young Arthur Schnitzler had.Arthur Schnitzler’s work was considered filth by Adolf Hitler. Anything that upsets that goose stepping, stiff necked, little pipsqueak should be read by the rest of the civilized world with reverence. Schnitzler was born in 1862 and died in Vienna in 1931. If he had lived long enough, the Nazis would have most certainly beaten him and had him thrown in some damp hole for being the Viennese Henry Miller, a few decades before Miller knew he was Miller. If his writing was not enough of an incentive to bring him to the attention of the Third Reich, certainly his Jewish ethnicity would have condemned him just as quickly. Schnitzler had numerous affairs, sometimes with several women at the same time. He kept a Journal for most of his life and dutifully recorded not only every assignation, but every orgasm. A bit OCD about the adventures of his willie, wouldn’t you say? The venerated Viennese doctor of psychology Sigmund Freud said in a letter to Schnitzler, "I have gained the impression that you have learned through intuition – although actually as a result of sensitive introspection – everything that I have had to unearth by laborious work on other persons." Was there a bit of Freudian jealousy in that observation? Does Freud need some time on his own couch? Fridolin may have thought about making conquests of women, but Schnitzler turned thought into deed. \ \ Nicole Kidman in Eyes Wide Shut. Is it just me or do those wire rimmed glasses make her look very naughty!Stanley Kubrick directed a film based on this novel called Eyes Wide Shut, (1999) starring the then married Nicole Kidman and Tom Cruise. I know I watched the film, but I don’t remember a bloody thing about it. I must have been plastered or snogging or both when I watched it, so I must apologize for not being able to make at the very least some pithy remarks comparing the film to the book. I have a feeling the two may have very little to do with each other, but I’m sure out there in GR land, there are several people who can weigh in on whether the film conveyed Schnitzler’s thoughts or was just a jumping off place for Kubrick/Kidman/Cruise to explore their own ideas. A quick read with some fascinating observations about relationships, the brain, and our natural/unnatural attractions to the people we come into contact with. If you wish to see more of my most recent book and movie reviews, visit http://www.jeffreykeeten.comI also have a Facebook blogger page at:https://www.facebook.com/JeffreyKeeten