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Movie Review: Disney’s Maleficent: Mistress of Evil Arrives (now on Blu-ray, 4K Ultra, DVD & Digital)

 

Available today on Blu-ray, 4K Ultra, DVD and Digital is the sequel to Disney’s Maleficent, Maleficent: Mistress of Evil. 

The film stars Angelina Jolie, Elle Fanning, Michelle Pfeiffer, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Sam Riley, Ed Skrein, and Imelda Staunton.

This film picks up a few years after the original movie. Aurora is now the Queen of the Moors. Maleficent watches over her as her protector.

Prince Phillip of the neighboring Ulstead has fallen in love with Aurora and proposes to her (she says “yes”). This does not sit well with Maleficient, especially because the people of Ulstead fear her and are against the fairies and creatures that call the moors their home.

Phillip’s parents, King John and Queen Ingrith, host a special dinner to celebrate their engagement. King John is excited that two kingdoms will unit, in hopes of peace between them.

Aurora begs Maleficent to join them. She begrudgingly agrees.

Dinner does not go well. The Queen makes comments that anger Maleficent. Maleficent goes into a rage and seemingly curses King John, causing him to fall into a deep sleep, similar to what happened to Aurora when she pricked her finger on the cursed spinning wheel.

Maleficent flees after Aurora refuses to leave with her.

Angelina Jolie is Maleficent in Disney’s MALEFICENT: MISTRESS OF EVIL.

Outside the castle Maleficent is shot and falls into the ocean. There she is rescued by a mysterious being, who takes her back to where he lives, and takes care of her wounds.

Maleficent is now faced with something she never expected. She learns about what happened to her kind. All of this enrages her, and she plans to attack the castle and destroy Ulstead, even if Aurora is there. Aurora is a human, and Maleficent is against all humans for what they did to her and her kind.

What happens when Maleficent attacks Ulstead? Who will will? What secrets will be uncovered? Can Aurora stop things before it’s too late? To find out, you need to pick up a copy of Disney’s Maleficent: Mistress of Evil. Look for it where ever movies are sold.

I really enjoyed the original film. I was looking forward to seeing this sequel.

This film employs the same interesting creatures as the first film. This time around there are a lot more enchanted creatures, including some new ones that are important to this film’s story line (the dark Feys).

The special effects in this film are really enjoyable. I especially loved it when Maleficent turned into a dragon. In the original Disney film she was a dragon. I have been waiting to see her transformation.

This film is visually stunning. Not only are the landscapes beautifully and very realistic, the lovely creatures that live in the moors are lovely to look at. I think this film is even more visually beautiful than the original film.

Elle Fanning is Aurora in Disney’s live-action MALEFICENT: MISTRESS OF EVIL

I enjoyed the story line. You could tell right away that Queen Ingrith was up to no good. I wasn’t really sure what she was creating initially, but further on into the story line the movie explains what she is creating in more detail.

I don’t think the film was that predictable. Some instances it was, but for the most part I didn’t know what was going to happen until it happened.

I really enjoyed the film. I think it was a nice sequel to the original film. It makes me curious to see if there will be a third installment. The movie eluded tot he fact that there could be one (maybe if/when Aurora and Philip have a baby?).

There are plenty of bonus features with this film. My husband and I watched the digital copy, so I didn’t get the chance to watch the bonus features. Bonus features include;

  • Extended Scenes
  • Outtakes
  • Aurora’s Wedding
  • Behind the Scenes Look at the Magic of Maleficent: Mistress of Evil
  • And more!

Look for Disney’s Maleficent: Mistress of Evil where ever movies are sold.

In celebration of the release, MultiCultural Maven has created a how-to guide to making your own flower crown, inspired by the film. Check out the instructions below. Click here(Maleficent Flower Crown Craft) for a .PDF copy of the activity (easier to read).

You’ll find the film’s trailer below for your enjoyment.

Be sure to follow the film on social media – Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.  The official hashtag is #Maleficent.

 

Kimberly

*I received a free screener copy to review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way. 

The Big Trip – Available today on DVD, Digital and On Demand

 

Are you looking for a fun, family movie? If you are, you should certainly check out the new movie release called The Big Trip. It’s available today on DVD, Digital and On Demand.

The Big Trip is an animated film that features the voice talents of Drake Bell and Pauly Shore.

The film is from the writers of Madagascar, Vasiliy Rovenskiy and Billy Frolick, and has already won a Dove Seal of Approval for all ages. The film is from Lionsgate.

From a writer of Madagascar comes this funny, outrageous adventure about a gang of misfit animals on an exciting quest to return a panda cub to its family when a stork accidentally delivers it to the wrong place.

Check out the film’s trailer.

 

It looks really cute.

I love that the animals pick up new friends along their adventurous journey to bring the baby panda to it’s family.

I also think the animation looks really good too. Sometimes these direct to DVD films are not always the best quality, but the animation in this film looks really good.

There is one bonus feature on the DVD, “Giving the Characters a Voice: At the Recording Studio with Drake Bell and Pauly Shore.” I am not sure if this bonus feature is available on digital or On Demand.

The suggested retail price of the DVD is $14.98. I do not have the suggest price for digital or On Demand (On Demand would depend on your local provider).

I was sent a screener copy to review, but unfortunately I have been unable to view it as of yet. Once I have had the opportunity to watch the film, I will amend this post and provide you with a bigger synopsis as well as my thoughts.

If you happen to see the film, I would love it if you come back here and comment on this post and share your thoughts about it.

Kimberly

*I did receive a free screener copy, but I have not been able to view it yet. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way. 

 

Movie Review: Joker – Now Available on Blu-ray, DVD, Digital and 4K Ultra HD

 

Now available for home viewing on Blu-ray, DVD, Digital and 4K Ultra HD is one of the most talked about movies of 2019, Joker. 

Joker stars Joaquin Phoenix and Robert DeNiro,

I did not see this film while it was still in the movie theater, but it was one of the movies my husband and I were anxious to see. Our son saw it with his girlfriend and he couldn’t stop talking about it (he almost gave us too many spoilers). Our son doesn’t really like going to the movies. He’s never liked movies and rarely watches television. The fact that he saw this film and wouldn’t stop talking about it, speaks volumes to me.

I received a free screener copy of the film to review. I couldn’t wait to see it.

Phoenix stars as Arthur Fleck. He’s a stand up comedian who lives with his mentally and physically ill mother, Penny (Frances Conroy). They reside in Gotham City, which if you follow the comic books, is the home of Bruce Wayne, better known as Batman (Batman is not in this movie, but his younger self is).

Arthur is a part of society that is poor and riddled with crime. He is also mentally ill and takes medication. He laughs a lot, even at inappropriate times.

Arthur gets brutally attacked by group of men. To help it from happening again, Arthur’s friend and co-worker provides him with a gun for protection. That turns out to be a bad idea after Arthur gets fired after accidentally revealing that he was carrying a gun. This sets off a serious of events that turn Arthur into the infamous Joker.

Using the gun that he was given, Arthur kills three men in self defense on the subway. The men are employed by billionaire Thomas Wayne, of Wayne Enterprises.

Thomas Wayne denounces the murders on the subway, and makes a comment about how crime like his is created by people who are jealous of wealthy, well off people (such as himself). He refers to such people as “clowns.”

Things start to spiral out of control for Arthur. His stand-up comedian job, issues with his medication, his mother’s health and a revealing secret about his paternity, all causes Arthur to “snap,” and thus the insane Joker is “born.”

I didn’t want to give away too much detail about the film. I just wanted to give you a bit of a “teaser” so that you have an inkling as to what the movie is about. Trust me, there is A LOT more to the film. I just touched upon the surface to give you a taste of the film.

Wow… just wow. I knew what to expect with this film, but I didn’t realize just how disturbing this movie truly was.

I have heard from others who have seen the film (both movie critics and friends) that this film has an underlying message to it. Most told me it had to do with society and people’s status based upon where they live, and how much money they make. There is also a theme dealing with mental illness and why it is so important the people with mental illness have the opportunity to get the support and medication they require, regardless of their social status and income.

I don’t believe that Arthur was innately a murderous criminal. I think he turned into the savage Joker because of the events that happened to him in his life. Another words, I believe in his case it was “nurture” and not “nature.” Although, his mom was also mentally ill, I believe it’s all of the events that happened to him that were the catalyst to making his “snap.” Arthur was a good man in the beginning, despite his mental illness.

I grew up watching Batman (Adam West). Joker appeared on the series, but there wasn’t any backstory for him. I don’t know if any of the comics touched upon Joker’s story. I appreciate this insight into the character and why he is the way he is.

This film is rate R for a very good reason – it’s violent, “dark,” and disturbing. A clown with blood on his person is the thing of nightmares for a lot of people.

When I first learned about the movie and found out that Joaquin Phoenix was going to be the Joker, I was like “meh.” I wasn’t much of a fan of him or his movies. After seeing Joker, I cannot image anyone else playing that part. He IS the Joker. He has the look, the laugh, and the acting chops to pull off such an intense, insane role.

Overall I am very impressed by this film. It’s not something I would typically watch, but I loved it. I plan on watching it again to see if I missed any of the details. This is one of those films that you end up thinking about long after the credits are done rolling at the end of the film. I even lied in bed that night thinking about the film.

There are a lot of bonus features with the Blu-ray. I’m not sure about the bonus features available for digital, DVD or 4K Ultra. I only have the Blu-ray copy. I would have expected more than there actually was (unless the other formats have more features?). Some of the features include;

  • Behind the scenes look at making this film
  • Alternative outtakes
  • Costume Tests

I have not watched the bonus features (yet), so I cannot comment on them (or remember all of them – sorry).

Joker is available where ever movies are sold or rented.

Below is the film’s trailer for your enjoyment. It’s the theatrical trailer. The film is no longer in theaters.

If you don’t like clowns, don’t watch the trailer (or movie).

 

Kimberly

*I received a free screener copy to review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way. 

Sling TV Offers Free Trials for New (And Returning) Subscribers

 

2020 is supposed to be “our year.” With that being the case, that means that we’re supposed to be doing things “our way.” This concept doesn’t end with improving your health care by working out, or improving your mental health care by Google searching “therapy near me.”

The New Year is about choosing things, products, and services that complement our lifestyles. With more people ditching cable for streaming services, there is no surprise that streaming services are improving their services and offering competitive rates for subscribers. One popular streaming service — SlingTV is no exception.

SlingTV is owned and operated by DishNetwork and provides cord cutters with access to popular streaming channels and networks for a fraction of the cost of cable tv packages. The Sling service offers its customers access to a wide-variety of popular network and cable tv streaming options that allows subscribers to create a customized viewing experience.

The SlingTV service is entering its fifth year of operation in 2020. The service began and has been making steady improvements in user experience, customer experience, and channel offerings since early 2015.

Sling TV Packages

Orange – For around $20.00 a month (plus taxes) cord cutters can enjoy access to thirty channels that are listed in the Sling Orange tier. The Sling channel lineup varies by market. You can find a list of SlingTV channels by market here.

Blue – Sling Blue offers subscribers multi-screen access to use the service on up to three screens at once. The Blue tier also offer subscribers access to more channels than those offered in the orange tier. Sling Blue starts at: $30.00 per month for access on multiple screens.

Orange + Blue – When you subscribe to Sling Orange + Blue you can access up to four streams simultaneously and enjoy the channels that both tiers have to offer. The Sling Blue + Orange service starts at just $40.00 per month (plus taxes and fees).

Add-Ons – If the channels you’re looking for aren’t available in the Sling Orange or Blue packages, you’ll likely find them in one of the services add-on tiers. Sling subscribers can choose from many available add-on options that provides access to even more customized content (listed below) for between $5.00 to $10.00 per month. Add-on categories are listed below.

  • Entertainment
  • Lifestyle
  • News
  • Sports
  • Locals
  • Movies
  • Premiums

Photo Source: Sling TV

SlingTV Free Trial for New and Returning Subscribers

Like most cord-cutting streaming services, SlingTV offers new subscribers access to a 7-day free trial to preview the platform. During your free trial, you have full access to all the features of the platform (except for add-on and premium services). Some add-on and premium services like Showtime On-Demand and HBO Go offer their own free trials.

Sling is working on winning back wayward subscribers this January by offering previous subscribers with an extended free-trial that lasts until January 12th, 2020. Previous subscribers should have received an email alerting them of their option to return to try out the new Sling TV. For those who weren’t invited directly by email, the returning subscriber trial is listed on the main page of the SlingTV website.

About the author:

Marie Miguel has been a writing and research expert for nearly a decade, covering a variety of health- related topics. Currently, she is contributing to the expansion and growth of a free online mental health resource with BetterHelp.com. With an interest and dedication to addressing stigmas associated with mental health, she continues to specifically target subjects related to anxiety and depression.

Yippee – A new streaming service for families (giveaway ends on 1/12/20)

 

The other day, my husband and I were talking about today’s technology, and how things are so much different now than they were when we were kids.

Back in day, there were only a few channels on television. The channels turned off at the end of the day too. If you wanted to watch TV late at night, you were out of luck. That was back when you have to manually change channels on the television set (there was no such thing as a remote).

When we were teenagers, we first got HBO. HBO came out in the early 70’s. My family didn’t get it until the late 70’s.

The idea of being able to watch movies on your home television was AWESOME.

Fast forward to today. Now you can watch movies and television on your telephone, that you can take with you anywhere. Movies also come out within a couple of months of leaving the movie theater, and not years late like they used to.

Streaming services are pretty amazing. I LOVE that you get a plethora of content available to you 24/7. Netflix and Hulu are certainly the most well known and popular. Disney+ is now a streaming force to reckon with too. They also have other streaming services, like Shudder, for horror movies.

There is a new streaming service available specifically geared towards families of young children. It’s called Yippee. Just the name alone makes me smile.

Yippee was kind enough to send me a code so I could try out the service for free in order to do this review (there was no compensation).

Yippee is an innovative online streaming service providing fun, family-friendly, and values-driven TV shows and movies.

One of the most popular franchises on Yippee is Veggie Tales. If you are unfamiliar with Veggie Tales, they are a group of adorable talking vegetables (animated) that go on adventures and experience a bunch of different situations. Each episode/movie teachers valuable life lessons such as honesty, love, friendship, compassion and so forth.

I believe that Veggie Tales shows/movies are a bit faith based too.

Yippee has A LOT of holiday themed programming that was available before Christmas (and some is still available now). They have a lot of Veggie Tales holiday episodes/movies such as Little Drummer Boy, The Best Christmas Gift, Merry Larry and the True Light of Christmas, Saint Nicholas: A Story of Joyful Giving and The Toy that Saved Christmas, to name a few (there are actually more holiday titles from Veggie Tales).

Screen shot from my phone of the YippeeTV app

If your family enjoys Veggies Tales, Yippee is a must have streaming service.

Yippee is so much more than Veggie Tales. All of their quality content is geared toward families. You will not have to worry about questionable content on the service.

On Yippee you’ll find both animated content and “live action” content.

Some of the franchises I am familiar with, like Veggie Tales, Jay Jay the Jet Plane. Yippee also features these franchises;

  • The Choo Choo Bob Show
  • Topsy Turvy
  • Come on Over
  • Wild About Animals
  • Zoo Clues
  • Paws & Tales
  • Ryan Defrates: Secret Agent
  • Yancy and Friends
  • Mickey’s Farm

These are just a few of the franchises you’ll find on Yippee.

I’ve been checking out Yippee and watching some of the programming. So far my favorites show are Owlegories (too cute), The Yippee Show (interesting facts and fun challenges), Wild About Animals (I love animals), and Theo (nice stories).

Owlegories

Most of the shows/episodes range from about 10-15 minutes, which is ideal for young children with short attention spans. Some go upwards of 20+ minutes, but nothing I have come across or watched is too long.

Overall I think this is a great streaming service for families. My kids are young adults, so they won’t watch it, but my husband and I have both enjoyed many of the shows (we’re just big kids at heart).

You can watch Yippee on your computer, or you can download the free app.

The service costs $9.99/month or $79/year (works out to about $6.53 per month). Compared to other streaming services, Yippee is no more or less, however, you can rest assure that no matter what your child watches on Yippee, the content is quality, educational, wholesome and fun.

If you are interested in learning more, download the free Yippee app or visit Watch.Yippee.TV (notice it’s not .com).

You can watch Yippee on a variety of platforms.

I have a fun Yippee prize package to give to a lucky winner. The prize package includes;

  • 3-Months of Yippee ($30 value)
  • Yippee T-shirt
  • Yippee Mug
  • Yippee Confetti Blaster

This giveaway is open to U.S. residents only. Limited to one winner per household. The giveaway ends on January 12, 2020 at 11: 59 PM (EST). The winner will be chosen and random using a random number generator. The winner will be notified via email and will have three days to reply, otherwise a new winner will be selected.

To enter, please comment on this post why you would like to win this prize package.

For extra entries, please use the Rafflecopter widget (below).

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Kimberly

*I received the same prize package in order to do this review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way. 

Movie Review: Echoes of Fear

 

Now available on streaming services such as YouTube, Amazon and Google Play is the horror film, Echoes of Fear.

The film stars Trista Robinson as Alisa, Hannah Race as Steph, and Marshall Hilton as David.

One night, Alisa grandfather has a heart attack and dies while taking a shower. His body was not discovered for weeks later after Alisa had the Police do a wellness check on him after she did not hear from him in a while.

Alisa is his only living relative. It’s up to her to clean up his home and sell it. Since this process could take a while, Alisa temporarily moves into the home. That is her first big mistake.

Almost immediately upon moving into her grandfather’s home, strange things start happening. Alisa hears strange noises, including a cat, even though her grandfather didn’t have a cat. She also thinks that she’s seeing thing including things moving and strange shadows.

As time goes on, more and more strange things keep happening. Alisa also starts to experience strange visions, or could they just be nightmares from an overactive imagination.

Alisa is convinced that something bad happened, and that her grandfather’s death was a heart attack brought on by fear. She believes there is something in the house that is the source of all the bad things that have been happening.

With the help of her best friend Steph, Alisa sets out to discover what secrets the house is hiding, even if it means she might become it’s next victim.

What is going on in that house? Is Alisa’s fears justified? Or is there something even more sinister than ghosts going on? To find out you need to rent/purchase Echoes of Fear. Look for it where ever movies are sold/steamed. I know it’s available for rent/purchase on Google Play, YouTube and Amazon Prime.

If you read my blog on a regular basis, you know that I love horror movies. I consider myself a “horror movie snob.” It takes a lot to impress me. I’m also not easily scared, especially with newer horror movies (nothing beats the classic). Today’s horror movies are all about sex, drugs and nudity. They are not scary at all.

Echoes of Fear does not rely on sex, drugs and nudity to convey a story. In fact, there is a brief rape scene, but I honestly don’t recall any nudity, and the rape was implied. It wasn’t not graphic (thankfully).

As far as the acting goes… meh. It was just OK. I’m not saying it was bad, but I have seen better.

I will have to say that the story was unique. I was thinking this was a typical haunted house film with evil ghosts or poltergeists. That was not the case at all. Story wise, I think this was an interesting story plot. It also shows you that ghosts are not the only things in life that are scary, and that is all I’ll say about that.

Alisa was crazy to stay in the house. After some of the things she experienced, most people would have fled and never looked back. There were a few things that happened to her that would have made even the bravest person flee in fear.

The movie was suspenseful, but not too scary in my opinion – however – if you don’t like movies with a lot of “jump scares” in it (meaning things that pop up suddenly), this film is full of them. Even me, a die hard horror movie fan, jumped a couple of times while watching this film. Kudos to the film makers for doing that. I can’t recall the last time a movie made me jump (not so much in fear, but because it happened so quickly and without expecting it).

Overall I think it was a good movie. If I happened to see it on television I would probably watch it again. I don’t foresee me popping the screener copy back in to watch it again, but I would “not” watch it if it came on television.

Echoes of Fear does have an official website, EchoesofFear.com. The film is also on Facebook and Twitter (EchoesofFear). The links are found on the bottom of their website. The website also shows you what other platforms you can view the movie on.

Below is the trailer for your entertainment.

 

Kimberly

*I received a free screener copy to review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way.