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Disney’s The Nutcracker and the Four Realms – Journey to the Four Realms: A Spoiler- Free Review by guest author Chrissy Lin

Published November 15, 2018 by Disneyways.com
Disney’s The Nutcracker and the Four Realms – Journey to the Four Realms: A Spoiler- Free Review by guest author Chrissy Lin
An age old tale about a Sugar Plum Fairy and a Nutcracker falling in love…or wait, was it an age old story about a little girl who dreams of her Christmas toys coming to life…or….oh dear…I have a confession to make–I’ve never seen the original Nut Cracker!
I don’t know anything about the story, and until I looked it up online, I really only had a vague idea of what it might, possibly, be about!  I know, I know, have I grown up under a rock?  It might seem like it!  But let me tell you, that did not matter one tiny bit as I sat mesmerized by Disney’s new “The Nutcracker and the Four Realms.”
Hear me for just a minute…
Sheer…Visual…Gorgeousness!!  
From the moment this delightful movie begins, you are thrown into a glittering world where heartbreaking reality meets a softer side of steampunk, culminating in a sweet story that has familiar elements and characters from the original Nutcracker story, without following that beloved story even one tiny bit.
I am a huge fan of several of the actors, most notably the amazing, talented, oh so epically regal, Helen Mirren, who played Mother Ginger.  Morgan Freeman was a delightful mixture of mystery and mischief in his role as Drosselmeyer, but it was my particular favorite, Matthew Macfadyen (with whom I fell in fan girl love when I saw him in Little Dorrit), who stole the show for me as Mr. Stahlbaum. His ability to convey deep emotion with just a soft catch in the back of his throat added depth and heartache in all the right places.  These three, along with strong performances from Jayden Fowora-Knight (Phillip the Nutcracker), Keira Knightley (Sugar Plum) and MacKenzie Foy (Clara), breathed new life into characters who have danced the same dance for more than 100 years.  Completely and utterly family friendly, there was only one PG word uttered, and only one or two moments with a PG scare.  I have a 5, 7, and 11 year old, and I wouldn’t hesitate to let any of them watch it.  In fact, I’m really looking forward to discussing the gorgeous and creative costumes with my eldest daughter.  Lead costume designer Jenny Beaven outdoes herself with exotic costumes that deserve a “nosed pressed to the screen,” loooonnnnnngggggggggg pause on your DVR to truly experience and appreciate her work.  Any aspiring costume designer would do well to take notice of all the little details she adds to make her outfits fantastically fantastical works of art. All in all, when you add up the NEW heart warming story line, the depth of feeling brought by the actors, and the glittering, high fantasy fashion of the costumes, you end up with a movie worth watching on the silver screen.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Chrissy Lin is a Senior Style Dots boutique partner, a wife, and a mother of three. Follow her on Facebook at  Chrissy Has Dots and join her VIP Style Dots FB group at  Chrissy‘s Dot VIPS!!!!! If you love jewelry or just love to buy gifts – check out a sparkly selection HERE.

 

 

A new music video featuring Andrea Bocelli and his 20-year-old son Matteo Bocelli singing the beautifully poignant “Fall on Me” from Disney’s “Nutcracker and the Four Realms” is now available.

Disney’s The Nutcracker and the Four Realms – Journey to the Four Realms Featurette

Disney’s “Nutcracker and the Four Realms” in theaters November 2, 2018.

Disney’s Christopher Robin A Spoiler-Free Movie Review from a life-long Winnie the Pooh fan ~ Written by Beatrice Denis

Published August 7, 2018 by Disneyways.com

Disney’s Christopher Robin A Spoiler-Free Movie Review from a life-long Winnie the Pooh fan ~ Written by Beatrice Denis

It was truly a joy to watch my favorite silly ole bear come to life on the big screen interacting with real people in today’s world! The movie begins around the time that the original story is about to end. You’ll see a few of your favorite moments with Christopher Robin as a real child playing with his Hundred Acre Wood pals before he goes off to school. Sometimes life has a way of making children grow up quickly. Christopher has a lot of difficult things to deal with during the chapters of his life from the time the story that we all know and love ended until we get to the point where this story begins. But there comes a time in everyone’s life when we can get so engrossed in the urgency and responsibilities of adulthood that we can lose that part of us that made time to simply do nothing and enjoy the moment. It’s in those precious moments when we allow ourselves to relax in the thing that we love most about life, that refresh us and allows us to be a better person for every aspect of our lives. This movie had a few difficult real-life moments and if you’re prone to crying at movies, you may want to bring a tissue…but every bit was kid-friendly. In the end, it helps you think about prioritizing the things in life that truly matter and see things the way we always really have from deep down within ourselves. That person that we were long ago is always inside us.

Ewan McGregor does a nice job of bringing Christopher Robin to life as an adult and Jim Cummings is a spot-on voice of Pooh and Tigger. Also, make sure you stay through the credits for some extra-special appearances. The Sherman Brothers, made up of Richard & Robert Sherman, were the duo that Walt Disney called on to create some of the most memorable songs in the world. Robert passed away in 2012 but Richard Sherman, who just celebrated his 90th birthday, makes a special appearance and wrote some new music for Christopher Robin with the same catchy lyrics and tunes that “The Boys” were known for back when Walt still worked in the studio.

Please note that I was invited to a complimentary viewing of this moving on Tuesday, July 31, 2018 so that I could bring you this review on behalf of Krista Joy of Disneyways.com. The free admission in no way influenced my love for this movie. All opinions are my own.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Beatrice Denis moved to Florida in 2010 from North Carolina, due to her love for all things Disney. She recently had a Disney Fairy Tale Wedding on Land and Sea at both Walt Disney World and on the Disney Wonder on Alaska water with beautiful snow-capped mountains in the background. You can follow her upcoming adventures on her blog, A Disney Girl in Orlando.

Ant-Man and The Wasp – A Spoiler Free Movie Review! Written by Peter Alden Grigsby

Published July 5, 2018 by Disneyways.com

 

Ant-Man and The Wasp – A Spoiler Free Movie Review! Written by Peter Alden Grigsby

Ant-Man and The Wasp is the 20th movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The MCU has really evolved into a blockbuster franchise. I think that they have some really great movies, especially in their Phase 3 (2016-2018) “Spider-Man:  Homecoming” and “Dr. Strange” come to mind.  I was of two minds about seeing this film AFTER “Avengers:  Infinity War”.  The time-line of this film takes place after “Captain America: Civil War”, but before “Infinity War”  I wasn’t sure how it was going to play out after such a character changing movie, however, I was certainly ready for a ‘light-hearted’ superhero story!  Especially if the first “Ant-Man” was any indication!

Paul Rudd returns as Scott Lang (Ant-Man), and he is certainly growing into the role.  Since the first film, Scott is maturing as a man and a father.  This film’s open finds Scott under home confinement thanks to a plea deal he took for siding with Captain America in “Captain America: Civil War”.   The years of being under house arrest have driven Scott to find creative ways to entertain himself, and he is able to enjoy visits from his daughter Cassie.   His friend, former burglar, Luis (Michael Pena) is running a ‘security’ company now, with help from Scott at home.  Although Scott is nearing the end of his isolation he knows F.B.I. Agent Woo (Randall Park), is waiting for him to slip up in some way, and with a possible twenty year prison term in the balance, he is doing everything by-the-book.  Hope (Evangeline Lilly) and her father Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) are also angry with Scott because he took the Ant-Man suit and helped Captain America without their permission.  As fate would have it, a strange dream, involving Hope’s mother Janet (Michelle Pfieffer), causes Scott to contact Hope who in turn takes Scott along with her to get to the bottom of the dream. Scott is naturally reluctant as he is days away from freedom, and being discovered out and about and consorting with his wanted former associates would not be good for his eventual release. Adding to this already complicated situation, is a shady tech dealer named Sonny Burch (Walton Goggins) and a mysterious new adversary named “Ghost” (Hannah John-Kamen) who complicate matters and force Scott, Hope, and Hank to contend with issues all around them as they race against time on an urgent mission while trying to stay away from Agent Woo and his team.

The chemistry between Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly is great, and they work well off each other.  Both are fun to watch on-screen as they continue to bicker amongst themselves, all while trying to be a superhero team.  I have to say that I am surprised at how much I like Michael Douglas as Hank (the original Ant-Man).  He is fantastic as the father-figure/mentor that Scott and Hope need to finally become real partners, and friends.  He is definitely the ‘glue’ of the team!  Micheal Pena also reprises his role as Luis, and, in a film filled with some great comedic performances, still manages to steal many scenes!  Randall Park also manages to garner some laughs with his “Adam West-style” dead-pan delivery as straight laced Agent Woo.  Walton Goggins has perfected the ‘smarmy businessman/shady crook’ character over many years of work!  He is absolutely believable as this black-market tech dealer.  Hannah John-Kamen has the interesting task of introducing us to ‘Ghost’.  A character that first presents as an evil threat, but becomes more of a sympathetic/misunderstood character!  This leads me to my only real “problem” with this movie.  While both Goggins and John-Kamen do a nice job with their characters, they still come across as more “TV bad guys”!  Formidable to be sure, but still more like something ‘Daredevil’ or ‘Luke Cage’ might come up against in the Marvel TV Universe.  This is not a slight in any way to the characters, or actors, they just seem a bit out of place here.  Understandably,  it would be silly to pit Ant-Man against the likes of a ‘Loki’ or ‘Red Skull’, much less ‘Thanos’, however he does deserve to have a nemesis that requires a ‘super-powered’ hero.

That being said, this film is still great fun to watch, and it does have some great character moments as well as humor around the build-up to the action sequences. The action, and there is plenty of it, mixes some great visual FX with some humor (i.e. – as Hope and Scott are forced to jump between household and everyday items at various sizes to contend with the threats presented to them).  There are also some hilarious moments as Scott deals with various suit malfunctions that interfere with his actions.  Finally, as we’ve come to expect with MARVEL, there are some post credit scenes that, without giving anything away, help to tie this film into the MCU.  Make sure you stay all the way to the end!!  This film is an action packed thrill ride filled with fun characters, interesting story line, and fantastic performances by the actors!!  Put this one on your list!  It’s worth it!! 
**Please note that I was invited to a complimentary viewing of this movie on Monday July 2, 2018 so that I could bring you this review on behalf of Krista Joy at Disneyways.com. The free admission in no way influenced my review, and all opinions are my own.**

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Peter Alden Grigsby is a Florida native. Pete has appeared in an episode of the Mickey Mouse club, was a Jungle Cruise Skipper, “friend” of the Rocketeer, tram driver on the backlot tour, and opening day cast member at Disney’s Hollywood Studios (formerly MGM). When he’s not writing movie reviews, he is performing as a singer and tribute artist all over the world and currently has a cover album of Disney songs called Kingdom Classics

Meet Our Newest (and Youngest!) Guest Authors!

Published July 2, 2018 by Disneyways.com

We are always on the lookout for fantastic guest authors to add to our Disneyways.com family, and you know we only bring you the very best. Who better to write tips for traveling to Disney World with kids then…well…actual kid authors who love to write about traveling to Disney?! We are super excited to announce our partnership with Momosa Publishing to bring you super informative blog posts and articles from Austin Reich and Tyler Reich. Be on the lookout for a whole series of posts from the boys, coming to Disneyways! Check out the graphics below to read more about Austin and Tyler, and follow the whole series of books on Facebook!

Here is some of the media buzz that’s started The Adventures of Real Animals in the Most Magical Place on Earth, books written by Austin and Illustrated by Tyler (available for purchase on Amazon and everywhere books are sold!)

“The stories are cute and fun, but if you like some practical advice there’s plenty of that too.” ~ WDW Magazine

“Probably the coolest thing about these books is that they were “created by kids, for kids!” How many kids do you know have written, illustrated and published their own book series? Not many! Walt Disney said “If you can dream it, then you can do it” and that’s exactly what these brothers have done. They came up with an idea, and executed it all the way through publication and their books are available everywhere books are sold!” ~ WDW Hints

“Brothers Tyler Reich and Austin Reich noticed the cute little critters too – and this talented duo has begun making the sweetest storybooks about what our furry friends are up to at WDW.” ~ It’s a FanGirl World

“While entertaining, the story that Austin and Tyler have created can be used as another tool to help you teach your children about being aware of their surroundings and staying with the family.” ~ Enjoying The Days

Click HERE to buy The Adventures of the Rabbits in the Most Magical Place on Earth

Click HERE to buy The Adventures of the Squirrels in the Most Magical Place on Earth

Click HERE to buy The Adventures of the Lions in the Most Magical Place on Earth

*Disclaimer: These are NOT affiliate links! We do not get any percentage of the sales of these books. All opinions belong to the respective author.

Video and more! Spyglass Grill at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort!

Published May 8, 2018 by Disneyways.com

Most of you know what a fan I am of the team over at WDW Magazine! So when they asked me to visit Caribbean Beach for the latest Facebook Live video, I was more than pleased! I figured while I was there, I’d get them some photos and video of the awesome new Spyglass Grill. I want to thank my friends Steve and Louise for treating Peter and I to lunch that day. It was a wonderful surprise!

Check out what WDW Magazine did with the footage I sent over. This is so cool! Click the photo below to be taken to the full article. Under the photo you will find the You Tube video. I hope you really enjoy them both and also…go try Spyglass for yourself! Click HERE to see the full menu.

Coco Movie Premier Review

Published November 22, 2017 by ltdjosh

I received a free movie preview in exchange for writing a review on this blog.

Last week, we were treated to our sneak preview premier of the newest Disney-Pixar movie, Coco. This is my humble review of the movie. I promise this will be a spoiler free review.

The first thing I can say is that you simply HAVE to go see this movie if you enjoy any kind of good movies. From the moment I saw the first artwork, I was drawn in to this colorful and magical world. Once the previews and teaser trailers started coming out, I got even more excited about the movie. However, I was not even prepared for how amazing and well thought out this movie is. So what exactly is the premise of Coco, you might ask?

Well, this movie focuses on the family celebration of Dia De Los Muertos, or the Day Of The Dead. This celebration is a time where families lay out altars, or “ofrendas” filled with pictures of relatives that have passed on along with the family members’ favorite foods. This celebration is one time of the year, it is said, that the passed on may cross the universe and return (in spirit) to the living world and be with their families. The movie focuses on the Rivera family, specifically young Miguel, as he fights his family for his right to be a musician instead of a shoe maker like the rest of the family. His family is against his decision because of an event that happens years ago, but Miguel is determined to be a musician, even if he has to do it behind his family’s backs.

Through a series of comical events, Miguel comes face to face with his family on the “other side” and has to find his way back to the living world before the end of Dia De Los Muertos. However, along the journey of getting back, Miguel discovers that things are not always as they seem, including his family’s history. Finally faced with the truth, he must make a decision that could potentially change his life. Where will this decision take him? Well, for that answer, you must watch the movie, but I guarantee that it will leave you breathless with laughter and leave you with  a deeper appreciation for, and better understanding of, the amazing culture of Mexico and Dia De Los Muertos.

There’s also another thing in this movie that followers of Pixar Animation have come to expect and enjoy: the music and the characters. Music plays a very pivotal role in this movie, as has become a bit of custom for anything coming out of the studio, and I have to say that the music in this movie is every bit as good as the music from Frozen (sorry Kristen and Idina). I use this reference because the people behind some of the most memorable music in this movie are the same team from Frozen: husband wife team Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez. The music is just as catchy to me, and I look forward to hearing more from this talented duo. And the characters in this movie are so relatable. Whether you identify with Miguel’s Abuelita, a stern (at first) guardian of the family traditions who in the end just wants what’s best for her family, his Mama Imelda, who was so shaken by the departure of her husband that she bans music in the family forever (again, to protect her family), or Miguel himself, your sure to find a character to suit your fancy in this film, and leave wanting to know more about this amazing family.

To find tickets, just go to http://movies.disney.com/coco. I promise you won’t be disappointed by this amazing movie, and honestly believe that you’ll want to take your family back again and again.

Disclaimer: I received complimentary movie tickets in exchange for writing this review. This did not influence my opinion and all thoughts are my own.

Get to Know Author and Grand Marshal Coordinator: Dean Gaschler

Published July 28, 2017 by Disneyways.com

It’s been said that if you love Disney World – you will love this book!! These words were spoken by none other than Lee Cockerell former Executive Vice President of Operations for the Walt Disney World® Resort – so you know they must be true!!

Originally from Kansas, Dean Gaschler migrated to Florida via Colorado to work for The Walt Disney Company (Walt Disney World / Magic Kingdom Park) in 1991. It all began in The Harmony Barber Shop just off of Main Street USA. Seven years into it all, he was asked to become the Grand Marshal Coordinator for the daily Parade in The Magic Kingdom. The remaining 14 years of his Disney career were spent creating and sharing magic with thousands of Parade Grand Marshal Guests that he selected. Order his books for an inside look, stories and more from Disney’s Grand Marshal Coordinator.

Book One “I Led The Parade!” is available on DeanGaschler.com (get the book personalized for yourself or a loved one – autographed by Dean for FREE by ordering this way!) and Book Two “Main Street Memories” is available on Amazon and at Theme Park Press

Follow Dean on twitter TWITTER

Like him on FACEBOOK


Check out our live interview with Dean to learn more about his NEW book – Main Street Memories!

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