135. Michael Douglas. Emma Stone, And Jane Fonda

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1. Movies I…Emma Stone Is Magic In The Moonlight

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There are over one hundred psychics, spiritualists, mediums, mystics, soothsayers, and romantic card readers in the Philadelphia area. Phone books do not lie! One of these one hundred must be in contact with the beyond, the future, or the cupid “want to be” lovers wish to contact? We need this contact possibility to be true!

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In 1928 England, American psychic Emma Stone is in contact with the beyond. She is believed to be bilking Sally Struthers and her English family out of large sums of money. The money is for material support and to build a psychic institute that she and her mother, Marcia Gay Harden, will direct. No one has been able to prove Emma is a fake.

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Colin Firth is a world famous magician and psychic debunker. His act as a Chinese magician draws great crowds throughout Europe. Firth has been recruited to save the family and to try not to fall in love with Emma. As all the men in the movie claim…she is not unsightly to look at. We guess that this phrase use was the way men talked in 1928. They, also, ended their sentences with a preposition as well.

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The music, the cars, the theaters, the settings, the fashion, and massive estates are the early 1900’s. The designers and re-stagers of all these “back in time” items do not get enough credit for their reproductive “as was” work.

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Fans of movies depicting the early 1900’s and fans of Woody Allen’s work will, likewise, enjoy Allen’s Midnight In Paris. Previously reviewed, it stars Owen Wilson and Rachel McAdams. In Midnight In Paris, Wilson is a writer who is transported back to the early 1900’s to interact with a host of the era’s famous writers that he presently idolizes.

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2. Music… Jane Monheit…Sweet Music Magnified!

If there were a category called Jazz With Dinner, Jane Monheit’s music would be loaded into everyone’s dinner music player. Monheit, this week’s recommendation, is ‘easy listening’ at its easiest. She would be a great new addition to anyone’s play list. Monheit seems to be everywhere as a great song companion with Michael Buble. Any favorite of Michael Buble’s is a great recommendation for ‘we’ the explorers of new musical delights.

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Here are three songs and collaborations you will enjoy as you meet Jane Monheit for the first time.

  1. I Won’t Dance (A duet with Michael Buble)
  2. Besame Mucho (Her version rivals Andrea Bocelli’s)
  3. Over The Rainbow (Garland is still first, Monheit is third)

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Monheit’s first album Never, Never Land is a great ‘meet the songstress’ starter. Our favorite album of hers is Taking A Chance On Love. Both albums combine jazz standards with newer songs. She does them all well.

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Monheit’s concert schedule takes her from California to New York. She is making a concert appearance close to Philadelphia in the fall. She is appearing at The Bergen Performing Arts Center in Englewood, NJ on October 27th. Other show dates throughout the year can be found on her webpage or on your ticket stub purchase site.

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3. Movies II…Lucy! She Was The First Scarlett Johansson!
History Or Science…This Week’s Tough Choices!

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Before seeing Scarlett Johansson’s new movie Lucy, there are two great research explorations you might consider. The movie is a combination of history, science, and multiple killings for Lucy’s brain power. She changes as her brain expands. The movie’s history introduces the first Lucy, a skeleton from 3.5 million years ago. The Leakey’s discovered the link that took evolution from an ape on all fours to a hominoid on two legs. The discovery of Lucy (Australopithecus Afarensis), in the Ethiopian desert in 1974 changed history and increased evolutionist theory. Hearing these explorers of yesterday present to a giant Philadelphia audience and a class of fourth graders in 1974 created a non-stop discussion for a month and more.

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The movie’s science is the study of the brain and its potential power. There are ten new studies featured on the Internet on brain research. Some of the studies say we are not using all our brainpower, while others debunk this thought as an urban myth.

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You can enjoy the movie for its history and science or you can get caught up in the movie’s multiple killings in the name of science. We hope you enjoy the movie for the former rather than the latter. Beauty does kill in this one. Sorry Scarlett fans!

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4. Television…Peace, Love And Understanding!
Welcome To Hippie Town! Jane Fonda Is Its Mayor!

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Catherine Keener, the ultimate supporting actress, stars with Jane Fonda and Jeffrey Dean Morgan in this special television offering. Keener’s husband, Kyle McLachlin, is divorcing her. She grabs her son and daughter (Elizabeth Olsen, Nat Wolff), leaves New York City, and heads to mom’s country house. It is a place she hasn’t visited in ten years. The town is eccentric to the 11th degree.

Jane Fonda is mother, grandmother, and is the town’s unofficial mayor. She supplies pot to everyone in town and has everyone exploring their inner hippie self through war protests and full moon howlings. Keener is appalled, but mom has more friends than Facebook’s friendliest person. Fonda is very likable!

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Catherine’s teenage children receive a wealth of growing up knowledge and understanding from grandma and the local town heartthrob (scream Chase Crawford…loudly). Jeffrey Dean Morgan, a similar old school throwback to Jane Fonda, tries to put Keener on a new life-way. Roseanne Arquette leads the town’s crazy character list. The movie is a great addition to Keener and Jane Fonda’s best work film file. The film is, certainly, a great addition to your   home“hippie” film library.

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5. Movies III…Guardians Of The Galaxy! Chris Pratt Captain!

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It is too much to ask that you bet all your money on a raccoon, tree, wrestler, green person, and overweight Park’s and Recreation star to save the world. Nonetheless, this is the team that will take the Marvel Comic Franchise’s ‘least read comic’ to a billion dollars in world-wide earnings. The movie’s 100 million dollar first week’s box office put the movie in third place all time for summer movie openings.

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The movie is a world saving space adventure. It is, also, a movie about team building as Chris Pratt, Bautista, and Zoe Zaldana set out on an impossible mission. Yes, Saldana is blue or green faced in this movie, too. Poor child! She can’t get a “this is my real face” break in recent movies.

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The Computer Generated Images (CGI) in Guardians are on another movie level. However, the movie’s real kudos should go to Chris Pratt’s new body and the 1980’s sound track that is an major part of the plot. After nine months of rigorous training, Pratt went from the bulk to the hulk. He no longer hides under a t-shirt at the beach or back stage at the Parks And Recreation television show trailer. Our pictures are the proof. View and read on space person. Pratt is a space captain supreme in this movie.

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The world is not saved in this version of Guardians of The Galaxy in spite of some epic bad guy battles. Fear not! Part two is already in the making. Okay! Some of the world is saved! There still is hope for the rest of it! Remember to stay for the after movie out-takes. Pay close attention to the small tree stub and get ready to dance in the aisles.

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6. Dining Out…Medium Rare…Very Well Done Food Presentation!
And A Uniquely Thought Out Pre-Meal Concept?

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The restaurant Medium Rare is a two-location treat in the Washington, DC area. It is for steak lovers and the restaurant advertises this exclusively. The restaurant’s prices are very reasonable (2 on a scale of 1-5) and the fries are as good as the steaks. Their move to the Drexel University area of Philadelphia is on hold. We are still checking on their new time schedule. Visit Medium Rare on your next trip to Washington to prepare yourself for the eventual move. We Philadelphia residents do enjoy a good and reasonably priced piece of beef.

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Be aware that there might be a wait at either Washington location. The wait is just as enjoyable as MR’s meals. You will be given a name tag with a French name and you will be asked to play the part while mingling and making friends with other restaurant patrons. The Three Musketeers will not be appearing at the restaurant, but please prepare yourself if you are asked to become one of this famous trio. Swords will not be supplied, though. Make Dumas proud nevertheless!

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7. Movies III…And So It Goes
The Ten Year Old Granddaughter Effect!

After a two-year battle to save his dying wife, Michael Douglas (real estate tycoon) now lives in the world of grouchy and perpetual meanness. He is mean to all with no exclusions. If his face appears on a missing person’s milk carton, no one will care if he is found. Be aware that somewhere in the movie Douglas saves a pregnant woman’s child. Even these points won’t help erase his “king of mean” title.

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Sterling Jerins is Douglas’s ten-year-old granddaughter. He didn’t know he had a granddaughter until his prison bound son dropped her off at his doorstep. Douglas had not seen his drugged out son since his son was injured in a fall at Douglas’s wife’s funeral.

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Diane Keaton, in a role she has played many times before, is an aged lounge singer. Her songs are surprisingly good both to the viewing movie audience and owners of local restaurants with lounge acts. It takes quite a while for this team of three to meld. Rob Reiner, who directed the movie, is Keaton’s pianist. His assistance comes in handy as Douglas begins to thaw.

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8. Music I…Sam Cooke…A Trip Back!

1. jackson        1. wonderstevie

The new list is out of top black male singers of all time. The new vote is a big change from earlier lists. The voters that remember the old days are dwindling in number. The list now features:

  1. Stevie Wonder
  2. Michael Jackson
  3. Prince
  4. R. Kelly and 5. Ray Charles 

    7. jackiewilson       7. cookharlem

  5. The list of older passed performers includes Jackie Wilson, Marvin Gaye, and our favorite Sam Cooke. Cooke took smooth to the marble counter top factory. Check out Sam Cook’s A Change Is Gonna Come and then R. Kelly’s and Patti Labelle’s version of the song. Cooke’s Unchained Melody is on a pedestal right next to the Righteous Brother’s rendition.2. guardcastportrait      2. guardbradleyracoon

    9. The Expanding Universe And Guardians of Our Galaxy!

Dear Present Day Guardians Of Our Galaxy!
Dear Creative Discussion Creators!

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Though you may not be presently guarding our galaxy, perhaps somewhere in the far reaches of your brain and computer are two creative paragraphs on books (even comics), art, music, gaming, education, travel or more. Don’t be afraid to let the inner you branch out. Our reading audience is insatiable for any new idea…even yours!

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Your ideas and suggestions should be sent to Tom Palumbo at tjpalumbo@aol.com. Please send a photo or two with your two-paragraph contribution. We’d love to display your art and photography on Let’s Talk over our discussions, too. Thank you for adding your work and expertise to this column! Your varied ideas, experiences, products, and insights will surely bring a larger audience to the column and make the column’s content more interesting and far reaching.

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We subscribe to the concept of reflected glory! Everyone that submits something for the column makes us look better. After 20 years of paper pamphlets and now a WordPress column, we hope Let’s Talk is getting better looking and more informative with each issue. Ask your friends to drop their email in the follow box in the bottom right hand corner of the opening page to receive the column each week. The follow box does not appear on your phone, but does when reading the column on your computer. The column is archived. You can read new write-ups and old write-ups at your convenience.

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About tjpalumbo

Tom Palumbo is a nationally known and award winning author, teacher, technology designer, administrator, and grant writer. He has taught for thirty-five years in preschool through 12th grade classrooms throughout the quad state area. His ideas have made a difference in the way thousands of teachers, parents, and children read, write, do mathematics, use technology, and think creatively and critically. Tom’s twenty books on reading, writing, critical thinking, and mathematics have won four national book awards. 5,000 teachers and home schooling parents have matriculated through his graduate courses/lectures. 12,000 have signed up for his website. As Director of Pennsylvania’s Parent Information Center and New Jersey’s Citizen’s For Better Schools Resource Center, Tom received over two hundred commendations for his presentations to thousands of teachers, parents, and administrators throughout the Florida, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Maryland area. Workshop participants receive idea loaded CD’s, access to hundreds of videos, PowerPoints, curriculum links, games, and lessons on his website, and an activity booklet filled with common core curriculum in line with local, state, and national standards. Instruction, on each of these resources, is presented during his presentation. Mr. Palumbo has over two hundred learning centers, bulletin boards, and project developers in reading, writing, poetry, literature, and math in make-it/take it item format that can, also, be part of any workshop program. Call or email Tom to set up a workshop for your organization. Tom Palumbo tjpalumbo@aol.com 215-262-9986 aimtjp.wikispaces.com
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One Response to 135. Michael Douglas. Emma Stone, And Jane Fonda

  1. Great to have found your website, thank you Tom!

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