Wednesday, December 16, 2009
For over a decade my brother has had a growing collection of building and accessories in Department 56's North Pole Series. Every Christmas he gets a new building. This year we got him the Penguin Visitor Center. I never expected or even wanted penguins to be in his village until I heard about this building. The main thing is that penguins do not naturally live in the Northern Hemisphere it really bugs me to see Christmas decorations even suggest that they do or even represent them with polar bears. So, why do I think this is okay?
First off, of course, the village is fictional. The real thing, though, is that it is rooted in truth that penguins do not live at the North Pole because it presents them as visitors. Sure, it makes them antropomorphic tourists, but that is a line I am okay with, as long as it is not trying to continue the lie too many believe about penguins living in the same place as polar bears. Besides they are still so cute.
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Just wanted to send a quick "shout-out" across the Pacific to my friend Ali in sunny Honolulu, Hawaii!
Ali runs the airfare-now.com website with all kinds of tips, coupons, strategies, etc. for findng holiday airfare deals. Now airfare comparison travel sites have come a long way in the past few years but there are still literally thousands of them to choose from. So here's a big aloha and mahalo to Ali for keeping it simple on a pretty nifty little travel website!
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Overall it is a pretty entertaining plot. King Julian is in it, but he is not as annoying as in The Penguins of Madagascar series. The penguins are somewhat minor characters more like in the movies than the show, but they are still part of the main characters. In the episode the penguins end up serving in place of the reindeer as the animals deliver the presents for Santa after he crash lands in Madagascar and loses his memory. Julian is left behind and tries to create a holiday that honors him and is all about him getting presents, but he then learns that it is not any fun if you do not give as well as receive.
Monday, November 16, 2009
Source: NZ team to drill for whisky in Antarctica
Thursday, November 12, 2009
Source: New icebreaker begins voyage to Antarctica
Friday, November 6, 2009
Saturday, October 17, 2009
Friday, October 16, 2009
I do not mind penguin movies that are not realistic, as I do love the penguins in the Madagascar movies and Mary Poppins, but then it has to be a fun movie to watch. I will be honest that I did not even pay much attention to it after the first half, as it was rather boring. Also, disappointing was I ended up with the plain DVD with no special features. That is what Netflix mails out, but there is a Family Fun version that has two featurettes and 8 games that might be more enjoyable, however the special features cannot make up for the boring movie entirely.
Sunday, October 11, 2009
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
Monday, October 5, 2009
Saturday, September 19, 2009
Should the bodies of 3 Navy Personel that died in plane crash in Antarctica in 1946 be brought home?
What do you think?
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
Read more about the new laser and it use in Antarctica in this article.
Friday, September 11, 2009
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Monday, August 24, 2009
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Sunday, August 16, 2009
I did not subscribe to Nickelodeon Magazine, but I guess over the summer Nick Jr. Magazine, which I did subscribe to stopped printing and they just decided to send me the Nickelodeon Magazine instead. I was not happy when the first issue was a Spongebob one, but I was out of town and soon ended up with the next month's issue because I did not know about having to cancel my subscription. The next one, though, was kind of nice because it has the Penguins of Madagascar show characters on it. I might not be much into the show because of King Julien ruining it, but I still like the penguins and without having to listen to King Julien it is way better.
The only thing inside the issue that features the penguins is on page 22 of this issue (September 2009 by the way). It is an article made to be like the front page of the Zoo York Times with articles about the happenings at the zoo. I was kind of disappointed that there was not anything else with the penguins in the issue. At least I now have a cool cover to add to my crazy collection of random penguin images in my Antarctic bathroom.
Friday, August 14, 2009
Sunday, August 9, 2009
Monday, July 27, 2009
Thursday, May 14, 2009
The special features include an audio commentary version done by Director George Butler, which is actually extremely boring and I usually enjoy all sorts of audio commentaries. Basically he is just reiterating the story and things said in the other special features with the movie playing behind, which really is not amazing enough to want to see more than once in many years. Anyways the Beyond the Endurance section of the special features does have some good featurettes.
One of the featurettes is called The Tale of the Endurance and is a telling of the story by Caroline Alexander, who has photo book about the expedition that this movie seems to follow very closely and I have read, which makes both the movie and this special features not all that unique seeming. This, though, is at least way more brief than the movie.
The second featurette is called In the Wake of Shackleton. This is actually a pretty good one about the filming the new footage for the documentary by going to South Georgia Island and the Antarctic.
The third featurette is called Iconic Images and is my favorite part of this DVD. It is mostly the twin daughters of Frank Hurley talking about their father, who documented the trip with photos and film. It is interesting to learn that his kids did not really know about the expedition until they were much older and that they used to play with their fathers film making it into smoke bombs.
The fourth and final featurette is called Past and Present. It is not as good as the third, but it is better than the actual movie. It is mostly footage of the descendants of the crew going through an exhibit on the Endurance for the first time in New York.
Overall I do recommend checking out this movie if you want to learn about the expedition and have not yet really familiar with the expedition, as it does offer a great in depth look at the expedition. However, only the special features add much new if you very familiar with the expedition. They almost make it worthwhile, though, and definitely help make it a worthwhile DVD for those only vaguely familiar with the expedition.
Thursday, April 30, 2009
Another thing I noticed is how much Werner Herzog annoys me. He makes some pretty off putting comments in the documentary and kind of rude seeming, such as when he summarizes peoples stories, but what really got me is the stuff in the audio commentary version. The audio commentary is overall interesting with them talking about the making of the documentary and honestly this is better than the actual documentary. Anyways the point is that Werner Herzog comments in the documentary make it seem like he carelessly does not care if his documentary not only does not have a point, but if there are inaccuracies. I do not think they actually admit to any inaccuracies, but the commentary comments include him saying things and then the others correcting him sort of and him just totally brushing it off as it does not matter. It just is a type of attitude that makes it seem like there could be inaccuracies, but at least it is not actually an educational documentary because I certainly would not trust any educational attempt of a documentary from him.
While I no longer feel so strongly about this being a worthwhile Antarctic documentary in terms of good quality, it does still show some interesting aspects of humans in Antarctica. At least the DVD release has some good special features, too. This includes stuff on the first disc with the movie, as well as a bonus disc (note if you rent through Netflix like me that the bonus disc has to be manually added and it does not get added as a set like some multi disc releases do).
The first disc's extras include the audio commentary discussed above, as well as some extra footage that did not make the cut into the final version of the movie. The extra footage includes "Under the Ice," "Over the Ice," and "Seals & Men" that are simply just video footage set to music. It is not that the footage is bad, but the "Under the Ice" one in particular does seem to drag on for a long time (30 minutes, I think). The other two extras are "Dive Locker Interview" and "South Pole Exorcism." These are both good extra footage of Antarctic people interviews that just did not make it into the final cut of the movie.
The bonus disc was a little bit of a disappointing rental. I kind of expected it to have a good amount of content, but it just has an interview with Werner Herzog. The interview is not bad, but if you have already watched the audio commentary most of what Werner Herzog says in the interview has already been heard. The interview also includes a lot of general talking about himself totally unrelated to this specific movie. Basically it just does not fit as being released with this movie and I now see why it is not (or at least why it is a good thing that it is not) automatically included when you add the movie to your Netflix Queue.
Saturday, April 11, 2009
Sunday, April 5, 2009
Sunday, March 29, 2009
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Sunday, March 15, 2009
Saturday, March 14, 2009
This penguin scene also appears in the Sing-Along Songs: Supercalifragilisticexpialidocous video. The DVD release of this is not all that great, as it is simply the same as the VHS release with no special features.
Sunday, March 8, 2009
Saturday, February 21, 2009
Friday, February 20, 2009
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Monday, February 9, 2009
Saturday, February 7, 2009
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
Monday, February 2, 2009
Sunday, January 25, 2009
Thursday, January 22, 2009
Monday, January 19, 2009
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Monday, January 12, 2009
Thursday, January 8, 2009
Wednesday, January 7, 2009
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
The above ones are of different yards in the Winterhaven neighborhood of Tucson. Every year they close down the streets and people can walk around viewing the mostly well decorated homes or take a hay ride through the neighborhood.
These photos are of the penguins my dad put in his yard. Two of them are mine, but I did not have a place to put them in my yard. The igloo one is my dad's.
These are photos of penguins under the big Christmas tree at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago.
Lastly here are some photos of a tree decorated with penguin ornaments at the Winter Fest at Navy Pier in Chicago.