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The Female Perspective: What The Heck “Westworld”

Welcome! This is a weekly blog* by Author J.L. Metcalf where I discuss anything and everything that strikes my fancy. If you have ideas on what you think I should write about, please send me an email via my website! Or find me on Facebook at @JLMetcalfAuthorArtisan!

For now, sit back, relax and enjoy the blog!

*All views expressed in “The Female Perspective” are those of J.L. Metcalf, not Great Stories, Inc


SPOILERS! SPOILERS! SPOILERS!


Are you watching Westworld? You are? Are you confused, are you searching for your “cornerstone” because you think you might be a robot?

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Are you wondering:

  • What’s real?Is this real? Is life real? Is this world real?
  • AM I A ROBOT???

Good. Then we’re on the same page.

Again, SPOILERS will happen so if you aren’t caught up, don’t read this.

I have to say that Westworld is hands down one of the best sci-fi shows I have seen in AGES. Well done HBO. Well. Fricking. Done.

If you haven’t watched the show then why are you reading this? Go, get yourself some access to HBO and WATCH IT. For reals.

Okay. Now that’s all taken care of.

OH MY GOD. Bernard is a robot! He’s Arnold! He’s dead! WTF?

I loved him and didn’t love him and loved him again and now he’s gone? Oooooh Westworld, you tricky beast. You are diabolical like Game of Thrones. You keep us on our toes, we literally have no idea what’s coming and then you tell us and then BAM dead people, uh robots, and well people too I guess. It’s a violent place.

I was introduced to Westworld via the 1973 movie. It’s a great flick, written by the amazing Michael Crichton and well worth your time. It poses the same questions as the TV show in that you sit there and wonder, is this okay? Is it moral to have a “theme park” that’s humanoid robots that act, talk and die like humans, but that humans can mess with, murder, rape, etc, with impunity.

In the Westworld of the film, it’s so much more than just the Western concept, there’s a Greek concept world and others, the scope of it is truly amazing and I wonder if eventually they’ll bring that into the show. I sure hope so.

What’s similar about both the TV show and the movie is this idea that people in the future go on vacation to a place where they can literally do whatever they want to other “people” (aka, hosts as they’re called on the show). That means that people go there and have sex with whoever they want, however they want. They murder people at will, they rob, pillage … You get the idea. The worst of people comes out when they’re given free reign with zero consequences or guilt.

Honestly, It turns my stomach a bit, especially in this current world climate of anger and chaos. I don’t think I could ever hurt someone for “fun”, robot or not. It makes you truly wonder about the people who frequent the park. I mean sure, there are plenty of folks who go just to have a good time, to immerse themselves in the old West. To drink, play cards, act like a cowboy or cowgirl and have fun. No murdering or other nefarious adventures. But then there are those that go to do not so nice stuff. Who go because they have never killed and want to do so without the fear of jail time or their own death. They go because they enjoy having power over others, because they see the hosts as less than human, as below them and therefore, they see the hosts as their playthings.

Again, it’s a bit stomach-turning when you start to think of it that way.

That being said, what I love about the show is that the women are given equal, if not more, power than men. There are multiple story lines evolving, and almost all include a powerful, smart, savvy woman taking control and getting stuff done. Rachel Evan Wood, who plays Dolores, (and who is always enchanting to watch) is discovering her true self by going on a mission to discover her past,  a past which she realizes is much more awful than she imagined. After all, she has wonderful, informative chats with Arnold, only to discover that she killed him.

Oh Dolores, what did you do???
Oh Dolores, what did you do???

Dear God, what? Dolores killed Arnold???? No, say it isn’t so! But I can’t say I’m surprised, we all knew that Dolores had a dark side, we just didn’t know how dark it could actually be.

Then we have Maeve, wonderful, brutal, brilliant Maeve played with a wonderfully sinister ease by Thandie Newton. She has a nervous, unseasoned tech wrapped around her beautiful finger and I cannot wait for the finale on Sunday to see if she gets her wish, to be free of Westworld altogether. Though we know that that may be impossible, and may even kill her if/when she tries to leave.

The thing is, these women are as brutal the world around them. They are products of their environment. They are products of their past stories that they are remembering with horror. They remember the rapes, the murders, the brutality brought upon them in their other storylines and they want out. They were created by Westworld and therefore, they are cruel, they are battered and they are ready to be something more than just a plaything for humans.

She's a wiley one, that Maeve.
She’s a wiley one, that Maeve.

They want freedom, or do they? Dolores makes the point in this past Sunday’s episode that the men all assume she wants out so that begs the question, what does Dolores want?

I think it’s very simple: they want to be able to decide their own future.

They want choices.

AH! It’s fantastic! I absolutely love this show and I look forward to the finale, while also being sad that my weekly bouts of, “Huh?” and “Holy cow!” are going to be over until Season Two premiers. I also live in fear as to who is next to die. Is it Maeve? Dolores? Ford (played with perfect level of menace and sadness by Anthony Hopkins)? Oh my gosh, it’s almost too much!

How about you? What do you enjoy most about Westworld? What do you hope the finale shows us? Sound off in the comments!

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Trailer Snark (November 23, 2016 Theatrical Trailers)

Welcome to Trailer Snark, a weekly column covering trailers for movies that will be released this week with thoughts from our roster of bloggers (Jessica from The Female Perspective, Ken from The Crank File, Jim from The Front Row View, Rob from Spector for Hire, and Great Stories founder Chris).  Thanks for reading, and enjoy the previews!

Moana (Disney) – Animation/Family
Rated PG for peril, some scary images and brief thematic elements
Tag Line: The ocean is calling.
Starring: Auli’i Cravalho, Dwayne Johnson
Plot: A young woman uses her navigational talents to set sail for a fabled island. Joining her on the adventure is her hero, the legendary demi-god Maui.
Running Time: 103 minutes

Jim: Looks like good, solid Disney fun with the added bonus of dreaming of warmer climates.
Chris: Got to admit….this looks fun! All that is missing is a surfing penguin…Oops.  Sorry Disney.

Bad Santa 2 (Broad Green) – Comedy
Rated R for crude sexual content and language throughout, and some graphic nudity
Tag Line: Giving the holidays another shot.
Starring:  Billy Bob Thornton, Kathy Bates
Plot: Fueled by cheap whiskey, greed and hatred, Willie teams up once again with his angry little sidekick, Marcus, to knock off a Chicago charity on Christmas Eve.
Running Time: 92 minutes

Chris:  One of the more disappointing naughty comedies of its time when the first one came out a few years back, I won’t be in a rush to hop down the same chimney.
Jim: I HATED HATED HATED the original, shame on you Billy Bob, no way, not even after 75 egg nogs.

Lion (The Weinstein Company) – Drama
Rated PG-13 for thematic material and some sensuality.
Tag Line: The search begins.
Starring:  Rooney Mara, Nicole Kidman, Dev Patel
Plot: A five-year-old Indian boy gets lost on the streets of Calcutta, thousands of kilometers from home. He survives many challenges before being adopted by a couple in Australia; 25 years later, he sets out to find his lost family.
Running Time: 120 minutes

Jim: Certainly looks well made, but not much interest here, I’m afraid (Hey, this sounds like a review from Dr. Seuss. I wonder which films would have taken his abuse?).
Chris: Well, I am going to have to be in the right mood for this one.  And that is not this week.

Allied (Paramount) – Action/Drama/Romance
Rated R for violence, some sexuality/nudity, language and brief drug use
Tag Line: The closer he gets, the more dangerous it becomes.
Starring:  Brad Pitt, Vincent Ebrahim, Marion Cottilard
Plot: In 1942, an intelligence officer in North Africa encounters a female French Resistance fighter on a deadly mission behind enemy lines. When they reunite in London, their relationship is tested by the pressures of war.
Running Time: 124 minutes

Chris:  World War II intrigue-filled drama with strong cast. Viva la resistance!
Jim: From Robert Zemeckis, an old Hollywood pro, comes this epic adventure, one to which I will go.

Rules Don’t Apply (20th Century Fox) – Comedy/Drama/Romance
Rated PG-13 for sexual material including brief strong language, thematic elements, and drug references
Tag Line: None
Starring: Lily Collins, Haley Bennett, Taissa Farmiga, Paul Sorvino, Warren Beatty
Plot: An unconventional love story of an aspiring actress, her determined driver, and the eccentric billionaire who they work for.
Running Time: 126 minutes

Jim: Looks rather spry. So does Beatty, who next year will be 80. My, how the time does go by.
Chris: Quite the ensemble!  I’d watch this one on the small screen.

Tickets Purchased:  Two for Allied (Chris/Jim) and One for Rules Don’t Apply (Jim goes double-dipping!)

Fun Fact:  Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt starred in the remake of Mr. and Mrs. Smith, a movie about husband and wife spies hired to kill each other by competing agencies.  The original came out during the height of WWII.  Recently while filming WWII drama Allied, Brad and Angelina are once again reprising their roles as they head to divorce.
Fun Fact: Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt starred in the remake of Mr. and Mrs. Smith, a movie about husband and wife spies hired to kill each other by competing agencies. The original came out during the height of WWII. Recently while filming WWII drama Allied, Brad and Angelina are once again reprising their roles as they head to divorce.

 

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Trailer Snark (November 18, 2016 Theatrical Trailers)

Welcome to Trailer Snark, a weekly column covering trailers for movies that will be released this week with thoughts from our roster of bloggers (Jessica from The Female Perspective, Ken from The Crank File, Jim from The Front Row View, Rob from Spector for Hire, and Great Stories founder Chris).  Thanks for reading, and enjoy the previews!

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (Warner Bros) – Adventure/Family
Rated PG-13 for some fantasy action violence
Tag Line: Explore a new era of J.K. Rowling’s wizarding world.
Starring: Eddie Redmayne, Katherine Waterston
Plot: The adventures of writer Newt Scamander in New York’s secret community of witches and wizards seventy years before Harry Potter reads his book in school.
Running Time: 133 minutes

Jessica: I’m a Harry Potter nerd so I do want to see this, even if it wasn’t technically a “real” HP book. Looks like a good amount of jolly HP fun!
Chris:  I can guarantee you I will be seeing this one since my wife is a massive Rowling fan.  My enthusiasm is measured, however.

The Edge of Seventeen (STX Entertainment) – Comedy/Drama
Rated R for sexual content, language and some drinking – all involving teens
Tag Line: You’re only young once… is it over yet?
Starring:  Hailee Steinfeld, Blake Jenner
Plot: High-school life gets even more unbearable for Nadine when her best friend, Krista, starts dating her older brother.
Running Time: 104 minutes

Chris: If I were a teen girl, I’d be all over this.
Jessica: Looks cute. I’d probably watch this at home. I do love a quirky coming of age film.

Bleed for This (Open Road) – Biography/Sports/Drama
Rated R for language, sexuality/nudity and some accident images
Tag Line: This is what the greatest comeback in sports history looks like
Starring: Miles Teller, Aaron Eckhart
Plot: The inspirational story of World Champion Boxer Vinny Pazienza who, after a near fatal car crash, which left him not knowing if he’d ever walk again, made one of sports most incredible comebacks.
Running Time: 116 minutes
Jessica:  I have NO love for Vinny Paz. I’ll pass.
Chris:  I’m with Jessica on this one. 

Manchester by the Sea (Roadside Attractions) – Drama
Rated R for language throughout and some sexual content
Tag Line:  None
Starring:  Casey Affleck, Michelle Williams
Plot: An uncle is forced to take care of his teenage nephew after the boy’s father dies.
Running Time: 137 minutes
Chris: No way is this a theater viewer, but it may make for a good home view.  Melodramas are better left for the small screen.
Jessica: Oh boy, another Affleck doing ANOTHER MA accent. I’m sure this is a touching, heartfelt, blah, blah, blah, but I’m kind of over it.

Nocturnal Animals (Focus Features) – Drama/Thriller
Rated R for violence, menace, graphic nudity, and language
Tag Line: When you love someone you can’t just throw it away
Starring:  Amy Adams, Jake Gyllenhaal, Michael Shannon
Plot: An art gallery owner is haunted by her ex-husband’s novel, a violent thriller she interprets as a veiled threat and a symbolic revenge tale.
Running Time: 117 minutes

Jessica: Blah. A lot of tense whispering.
Chris: That one got my attention!  Great cast, and looks to be a taut thriller.

The Eyes of My Mother (Magnet) – Drama/Horror
Rated R for disturbing violent content and behavior, and brief nudity
Tag Line: None
Starring: Kika Magalhaes, Olivia Bond, Will Brill
Plot: A young, lonely woman is consumed by her deepest and darkest desires after tragedy strikes her quiet country life.
Running Time: 76 minutes

Chris:  At 76 minutes, there must not be much story to tell. What’s worse is that they didn’t have the confidence to schedule this one against other Halloween fare.
Jessica: Where are the comedies? This trailer annoyed the crap out of me.

Officer Downe (Magnolia) – Action
Rated R for brutal bloody stylized violence throughout, a strong prolonged sex scene with nudity, and pervasive language
Tag Line: Protecting. Serving. Ass Kicking.
Starring: Tyler Ross, Kim Coates
Plot: Based on the graphic novel, a police officer who can’t be stopped by death returns to the streets time and time again to fight crime.
Running Time: 88 minutes

Jessica: Oh here’s a comedy! Ummm…This looks just insane enough that I’d want to see it.
Chris: Looks a bit campy and silly, but might be some fun.

A Streetcat Named Bob (Cleopatra) – Biography/Comedy/Drama
Not Rated
Tag Line: Sometimes it takes nine lives to save one
Starring: Luke Treadaway, Bob the Cat
Plot: Based on the international best selling book. The true feel good story of how James Bowen, a busker and recovering drug addict, had his life transformed when he met a stray ginger cat.
Running Time: 103 minutes

Chris: I can’t believe I am saying this, but I actually really want to see this one!
Jessica: A movie about a man and a cat…Okay, sure. This is truly a weird group of trailers this week.

Life on the Line (Lionsgate) – Action/Drama
Rated R for some violence/grisly images and brief strong language
Tag Line: Courage. Risk. Sacrifice.
Starring: John Travolta, Kate Bosworth, Devon Sawa, Sharon Stone
Plot: A crew of men who do the high-wire work of fixing the electrical grid are hit by a sudden deadly storm.
Running Time: 97 minutes

Jessica: So this is the Twister for Linemen, Cool. That’s fine. I respect linemen, this movie? I don’t think I’ll be seeing it.
Chris: Could make for a good rainy night viewing….pun very much intended.

Tickets Purchased: One for Fantastic Beasts (Jessica) and One for Nocturnal Animals (Chris)

Rejected cast member of Fantastic Beasts
Rejected cast member of Fantastic Beasts
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The Female Perspective: Some Of My Favorite Things

Welcome! This is a weekly blog* by Author J.L. Metcalf where I discuss anything and everything that strikes my fancy. If you have ideas on what you think I should write about, please send me an email via my website! Or find me on Facebook at @JLMetcalfAuthorArtisan!

For now, sit back, relax and enjoy the blog!

*All views expressed in “The Female Perspective” are those of J.L. Metcalf, not Great Stories, Inc


I thought for a bit about what I wanted to write about this week, I’ll admit to being still a bit heartsick over the election results and I’m not ashamed to admit it. While this is not a political blog and I do not want to get political, I also can’t pretend to be business as usual. So I decided to do another post about some things that make me happy in the hopes that it will cheer others or even inspire them to share what makes them happy as well!

Also, it’s a bit of a gift guide too since it’s that time of year again folks!

Christmas is my favorite time of year. It’s a time that has always felt hopeful. One year is nearing its end, while another looms before us, full of hope and opportunity. I admit that I am a bit frightened as to what is coming for us in 2017 and beyond, but I will not allow my fear to drive me, I will keep hoping for better things on the horizon.

I won’t give up and neither should you.

And now, onto some of my favorite things!

#1. SOCKS! 

I admit to having a crazy obsession with socks. I’ve managed to temper it as the years have gone on mostly because I have such a massive collection I really cannot buy any new ones. That does not, however, stop others from indulging me in my obsession and I often get fun new socks for my birthday and/or Christmas. One of my favorite places to shop for socks is a Portland, Oregon shop called Sock Dreams. They seriously have a HUGE selection of the coolest socks. My favorites from there are by far what they call the “extraordinary tie dyed thigh high“. I LOOOOVE them so much I fear for the day they die and therefore only wear them sparingly! I really need to get a new pair one of these days.

SOCKS!
SOCKS!

What I love about them is that they have a wide range of prices and styles and their customer service is nothing short of spectacular. I have ordered socks from them to have them come, regular USPS shipping, in less than a week. It’s fantastic!

#2. Geeky Things from Think Geek

They have some of the funnest stuff around, from SHIELD logo yoga pants, to solar system glassware and more. It’s truly a plethora of geeky goodness. I can browse for hours when I am avoiding my real work and still not get through everything they have to offer.

Also, a Book of Spells Wallet!?!?! Are you kidding me??? So cool.

#3. Stuff on Etsy.

Who doesn’t love Etsy? It really is a wonderfully diverse and fun black hole of shopping exploration. With finds like a Narwhal Cardigan and or awesome prints of parody art by Dave Pollock, you cannot go wrong in terms of gift giving this year!

Photo By JL Metcalf
Photo By JL Metcalf

FYI, I have a nifty little shop on Etsy called Juicey Creative Works and it includes photographs, signed copies of my books and art by none other than Frankie B. Washington!

#4. Neighborhood Love Notes on social media

Inspired to create a love bubble around the world, I came across this just a day or so after the election. I thought it was such  beautiful and simple idea. Simple get some sidewalk chalk and write love notes to the world, to your neighbors on your sidewalk.

Let’s spread love and support for all people who may live in fear of the current events. While hateful groups feel emboldened to spread their bigotry via vandalism, let’s counter with colorful reminders that we are not alone in our fight against intolerance and our commitment to solidarity.

NOTE: You can do this anywhere, anytime, and anyplace! Modify, change, get creative. Just grab your crew and go.

Initially imagined by Ashley Horan, here are her own words from her Facebook page –

“A testimonial, and an invitation:

I was terribly unproductive today. I realized I needed to make something, rather than think about anything. Thinking about my queer and trans and Muslim and undocumented and poor neighbors, I realized that I needed to tell them – before doing anything else – that I see them and I love them. So I bought sidewalk chalk, and wrote love notes to my neighborhood.

As I was working, at least seven or eight kids in my neighborhood–none of them ones that I had known before –stopped and talked with me on their way home from school. They told me about their fears, their hopes, their dreams. One of them took the time to stop and create a square of his own.

Tomorrow, I am going to go to other places in the city where I know people are hurting and tell them in this way that I love them, too.

My unsolicited advice: go buy some sidewalk chalk, and meditate about who you love – rather than who you fear – for a little while. This will certainly not change the world. There is so much other work to do. But it saved my heart today.

Those of you who are part of congregations, religious communities, or other communal spaces where you will be gathering this week, an idea: one of my colleagues had the idea to do a “reverse offering” at her church this weekend, where she will pass out chalk to the congregation and charge people to go out and write notes to folks in their communities wherever they see the need. This is brilliant.

Please, if you do this in a communal OR an individual way, will you take photos and post them with the hashtag #NeighborhoodLoveNotes? Let’s spread the love!”

Ashley Horan
Ashley Horan

What could be better than that this time of year?

#5. You, Dear Readers

Yep, it’s true. For all those that read my blog, even if you never leave a comment, I thank you from the bottom of my heart. I do this for fun and I do this in the hope that something I say inspires someone else to write their own blog, or to watch a movie I might suggest, or just to laugh a little when they feel sad. I take blogging seriously, even when it is a lighthearted blog like today’s. It’s important that we all feel heard and we all feel loved and I know for the last two years, it’s been a tough go for some/all of us. Let’s do our best to #SendLove to one another, to #BeLove to one another and to remember, we are all in this together. No matter who you voted for, we are all human beings deserving of love, respect and kindness. As I’ve seen online so many times (and apologies for the swears if it offends);

bb15ffce2a23d6645300e57abe84c483

As always, thank you for reading! See you next week!!!

And, please, share what makes YOU happy!

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Trailer Snark (November 11, 2016 Theatrical Trailers)

Welcome to Trailer Snark, a weekly column covering trailers for movies that will be released this week with thoughts from our roster of bloggers (Jessica from The Female Perspective, Ken from The Crank File, Jim from The Front Row View, Rob from Spector for Hire, and Great Stories founder Chris).  Thanks for reading, and enjoy the previews!

Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk (Sony) – Drama
Rated R for language throughout, some war violence, sexual content, and brief drug use
Tag Line: None
Starring: Joe Alwyn, Kristen Stewart, Vin Diesel, Steve Martin
Plot: 19-year-old Billy Lynn is brought home for a victory tour after a harrowing Iraq battle. Through flashbacks the film shows what really happened to his squad – contrasting the realities of war with America’s perceptions.
Running Time:  110 minutes

Jessica: I usually enjoy a well done war movie, but I’m not sure about this one. The trailer really doesn’t tell me much about why it’s called “The Long Halftime Walk”, but then again, I can’t take Vin Diesel as a serious actor so that might be why i feel so lukewarm to this one!
Jim: This week’s trailers don’t bode well for the Holiday Movie season. The solemn chorus is telling me that I should feel moved, but have to admit it left me cold. Still, the fact that it’s an Ang Lee movie gives me hope.
Chris:  It’s a double dose of heck no with both Vin Diesel and Kristen Stewart in starring roles.  That is enough to kill my interest.

Almost Christmas (Universal) – Comedy/Drama
Rated PG-13 for suggestive material, drug content and language
Tag Line: Five days together?  Oh joy!
Starring: Kimberly Elise, Omar Epps, Danny Glover
Plot: A dysfunctional family gathers together for their first Christmas since their mom died.
Running Time: 112 minutes

Chris: This one seems full of yuletide jeer……pass.
Jessica: Blah. I’d rather see Bad Santa 2!
Jim: Looks more like Festivus. Nah.

Arrival (Paramount) – Drama/Mystery/Sci-Fi
Rated PG-13 for brief strong language
Tag Line:  Why are they here?
Starring:  Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, Forest Whitaker
Plot: A linguist is recruited by the military to assist in translating alien communications.
Running Time: 116 minutes

Jim: Yet another Close Encounters/Independence Day knockoff.
Chris: Effective trailer that amps up the drama.  Plus the wife loves Amy Adams (her favorite actress, thanks to Enchanted). 
Jessica: I’ve seen this trailer a lot recently and I just don’t care what’s going on. Something about it just annoys the holy heck out of me.

Shut In (EuropaCorp USA) – Drama/Thriller
Rated PG-13 for terror and some violence/bloody images, nudity, thematic elements and brief strong language
Tag Line: Don’t believe everything you see.
Starring:  Naomi Watts, Oliver Platt, Charlie Heaton
Plot: A heart-pounding thriller about a widowed child psychologist who lives in an isolated existence in rural New England. Caught in a deadly winter storm, she must find a way to rescue a young boy before he disappears forever.
Running Time: 91 minutes

Jessica: Ditto for this one. Look like well trod ground and unless someone can tell me it’s not, I’ll pass.
Jim: (cue Homer Simpson voice) Booooring!
Chris: The trailer left me cold, but without that spine-tingling shiver.  Naomi Watts is always fantastic, but this one is probably better left as a home viewer.

The Love Witch (Oscilliscope) – Comedy/Horror
Not Rated
Tag Line: She loved men….to death.
Starring: Samantha Robinson, Laura Waddell
Plot: A modern-day witch uses spells and magic to get men to fall in love with her, in a tribute to 1960s pulp novels and Technicolor melodramas.
Running Time: 120 minutes

Chris:  Not with Jim’s eyes, and Jess’ wallet.
Jessica:  this was the most horrible, long-winded, horrible trailer I’ve ever seen. I get what they were trying for but they told the ENTIRE STORY in this trailer and it just looks awful. Pass.
Jim: Yeah, this was…UNBELIEVABLY bad. Almost like a fake SNL trailer, except not funny.

Tickets Purchased: One for Arrival (Chris) while both Jim and Jessica stay home to watch old Jack Sparrow movies and eat chocolate.

Can I come crash your house?
Can I come crash your house?

 

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The Female Perspective: A Little Bit of Laughter!

Welcome! This is a weekly blog* by Author J.L. Metcalf where I discuss anything and everything that strikes my fancy. If you have ideas on what you think I should write about, please send me an email via my website! Or find me on Facebook at @JLMetcalfAuthorArtisan!

For now, sit back, relax and enjoy the blog!

*All views expressed in “The Female Perspective” are those of J.L. Metcalf, not Great Stories, Inc


It’s been a long week already, a hard week for some, a good week for others. Whatever your political side, I hope you are feeling at peace in some way in knowing that the world keeps spinning and in the end, we are all the same, we are Humans, we are Americans and as naive as it sounds, let’s try to love one another. 


That being said, I had wanted to post something about the movie Dr. Strange but I’m not quite feeling it at this time. Instead I think it would be more fun to post some happy stuff, to do a list of things that make me smile in the hopes that they make you smile too.

Also, I’m having technical issues and can’t seem to post any actual video or pictures in here today so make sure to click the titles for the fun stuff!!!

Tiny Hamster Eating a Tiny Pizza

It’s exactly as advertised and for some reason, it’s totally adorable.

Marcel The Shell With Shoes On

This is seriously the best. How can you not fall in love with Marcel who mis-pronounces his own name and is ashamed of the salad “mess” in his home.

“Guess what my skis are.”

“What?”

“Toenails from a man.”

Simon’s Cat – Trash Cat

Anything related to Simon’s Cat is freaking hilarious. I love the hijinks this little one gets into!


Those are a few things that make me giggle, have nothing to do with feminism or politics and that remind me that life goes on, even if it feels as though everything is falling apart.

I will be back next week with some Dr. Strange fun and more in the weeks that follow!

Be well, send love and be love my blog reading and writing friends.

What makes you laugh? Post links in the comments and share with the class!

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Trailer Snark (November 4, 2016 Theatrical Trailers)

Welcome to Trailer Snark, a weekly column covering trailers for movies that will be released this week with thoughts from our roster of bloggers (Jessica from The Female Perspective, Ken from The Crank File, Jim from The Front Row View, Rob from Spector for Hire, and Great Stories founder Chris).  Thanks for reading, and enjoy the previews!

Doctor Strange (Disney) – Action/Fantasy/Adventure
Rated PG-13 for sci-fi violence and action throughout, and an intense crash sequence
Tag Line:  Open your mind.  Change your reality.
Starring: Benedict Cumberbatch, Rachel McAdams, Tilda Swinton
Plot: A former neurosurgeon embarks on a journey of healing only to be drawn into the world of the mystic arts.
Running Time: 115 minutes

Jessica: HECK YEAH!!! This is what Im seeing this week, no question. I know nothing of the source materials, but it looks amazing and Marvel has a stellar track record in my book!
Jim: Not being a comic book follower, I don’t get the chills from this that fans have been getting, but it looks intriguing. That, and Benedict Cumberbatch rocks!
Chris:  It’s a Marvel movie….of course I want to see it.  And though Ken and Rob are absent from this week’s trailer reviews, It would be safe to speak for them as well.

Trolls (Dreamworks) – Family/Animation
Rated PG for some mild rude humor
Tag Line: Find your happy place
Starring: Anna Kendrick, Justin Timberlake, Russel Brand
Plot: After the Bergens invade Troll Village, Poppy, the happiest Troll ever born, and the curmudgeonly Branch set off on a journey to rescue her friends.
Running Time: 92 minutes

Chris:  I knew it…Russel Brand is a troll!  Pass.
Jessica: Good lord no.
Jim: Despite the surfeit of animated flicks, this looks amusing  enough to be watchable. Have to admit I like the Timberlake tune.

Loving (Focus Features) – Biography/Drama
Rated PG-13 for thematic elements
Tag Line: All love is created equal.
Starring: Ruth Negga, Joel Edgerton
Plot: Richard and Mildred Loving, an interracial couple, are sentenced to prison in Virginia in 1958 for getting married.
Running Time: 123 minutes

Jim: Looks well-acted and absorbing.
Chris:  One of the most important civil rights cases in our nation’s history.  How can that not be compelling fare for the big screen?
Jessica: This looks truly amazing and I have definite plans to check this out.

Hacksaw Ridge (Summit Entertainment) – Biography/Drama
Rated R for intense prolonged realistically graphic sequences of war violence including grisly bloody images
Tag Line: When the order came to retreat, one man stayed.
Starring: Andrew Garfield, Teresa Palmer, Vince Vaughn, Sam Worthington
Plot: WWII American Army Medic Desmond T. Doss, who served during the Battle of Okinawa, refuses to kill people and becomes the first Conscientious Objector in American history to be awarded the Medal of Honor.
Running Time: 131 minutes

Jessica: This looks intriguing, I’d watch this at home.
Jim: Wow. This looks incredible. Interesting that Mel Gibson isn’t mentioned by name.
Chris: This has to be one of the most unique war stories I have ever heard of…..and the fact that it is based fully on the real life story of this incredible young man.  Count me in!

Peter and the Farm (Magnolia Pictures) – Documentary
Not Rated
Tag Line: None
Starring:  Peter Dunning
Plot: A documentary on Peter Dunning, the proprietor of Mile Hill Farm in Vermont who has isolated himself away from his family and often suggests to the filmmakers to make his own suicide a narrative device.
Running Time: 91 minutes

Chris:  An exploration of mental illness or an indictment of society?  I am not really sure, but the trailer managed to grip me hard.
Jessica: Well then, this looks…interestingly intense. I’m curious.
Jim: Ohhhh-kaaaay. I dunno…

Tickets Purchased:  Two for Doctor Strange (Jessica and Chris) and One for Hacksaw Ridge (Jim)

Does that make him the magical version of The Punisher?
Does that make him the magical version of The Punisher?