Posts Tagged ‘Rock of Ages’

Random Thoughts 2012 Recap, Part One

Some events in our lives are random.  And, so are many of our thoughts.  As the one year anniversary of my blog approaches, I looked back and I’ve done more than a dozen random blogs  — blogs that cover many topics instead of just one thing.

And, since some of you have been with me and my blog since the beginning and some have joined throughout the year, I want to share those random thoughts and see what your thoughts are on them.  That way, you don’t have to go through the archives to find them.

All you have to do is click on the underlined title of the random blogs and it’ll open them up.

January 22, 2012

Las Vegas, South Carolina, A Womanizer, and Murray State

My first random blog covered a fundraiser that I worked on and the great prizes we won in a silent auction, Las Vegas, the South Carolina primary, (yes, election season was getting underway one year ago), and the Murray State Racers basketball team.

March 31, 2012

Totally Miscellaneous Blog Entry

In the late March blog, I covered basketball, priests, golden retrievers, and Christmas (?).

May 16, 2012

I Definitely Think Too Much — Check Out This Mish Mash of Thoughts

In this May blog, I talked about Mother’s Day, crazy dreams, immorality, the Bible, exciting new music, American Idol, Lady Gaga’s new tour, and two disturbing videos.

June 6, 2012

Rambling Mind and Random Thoughts

On my mind that day was swimming, diet and exercise, the MDNA tour getting underway, cheesecake, political thoughts, Kylie Minogue, and summer movies that had me excited.

Some of the thoughts you may agree with and some you may not, but we can always talk about them diplomatically.

Have a great rest of the year.

Anthony

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My 2012 Favorites CDs

Do you like year-end lists?  Maybe you find them interesting or as a starting point of a heated debated, especially if you disagree.  Yesterday, I shared with you my favorite movies that I watched in 2012.  Now, here are my favorite albums that I bought this year.  Semantics!  Although one of them was released in 2011, I just bought it this year, so it’s new to me and this is my list!  🙂

Just missing out on the Top Ten were #11 “Christmas Spirit” (Richard Marx), #12 “Hello” (Karmin), #13 “Cheers, It’s Christmas” (Blake Shelton), #14 “Christmas With Scotty McCreery (Scotty McCreery) and #15 “Electra Heart (Marina and the Diamonds).

10Ten

“ROCK OF AGES” — ORIGINAL MOTION PICTURE SOUNDTRACK

9 CD

KYLIE MINOGUE — “APHRODITE:  LES FOLIES (LIVE IN LONDON)”

#8 CD

LIONEL RICHIE — “TUSKEGEE”

#7 CD

LADY ANTEBELLUM — “ON THIS WINTER’S NIGHT”

#6 CD

ROD STEWART — “MERRY CHRISTMAS, BABY”

#5 CD

KYLIE MINOGUE — “THE BEST OF KYLIE MINOGUE”

#4 CD

SCISSOR SISTERS — “MAGIC HOUR”

*NSFW*

#3 CD

CALVIN HARRIS — “18 MONTHS”

#2 CD

MARTIN SOLVEIG — “SMASH”

#1 CD

MADONNA — “MDNA (DELUXE EDITION)”

MDNA

*NSFW* (This is one of the best Madonna songs ever — very angry and violent!)

Here’s to 2013!

Anthony

Anthony’s 2012 Favorite Movies

I love lists.  I love reading them and I love compiling my own.  When I sit down each December to put together my favorite movies and compact discs of the year, I consider anything that is new to me that year.  So, yes, a movie that was released in the past may make my Top Ten list, even though it isn’t “new”.

Here is my list of my favorites movies I saw in 2012.  I encourage you to check out the trailers for the movies that are not mainstream or blockbusters in the United States since you may not have heard of them.  And, some of them may be a little scandalous depending on your sensitivities!!!!  🙂

Before I get to my Top Ten, here are ten others that barely missed out!

#20

The Descendants

#19

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

#18

Drive

#17

The Ides of March

#16

The Skin I Live In

#15 Movie

Jitters

#14 Movie

The Men Next Door

#13

Worldwide Box Office:  $22.8 million

#12 Movie

Worldwide Box Office:  $247.9 million

#11 Movie

Worldwide Box Office:  $56.4 million

#10 MOVIE

Worldwide Box Office:  $28.3 million

Worldwide Box Office:  —

Worldwide Box Office:  $1.1 million

Worldwide Box Office:  $295.1 million

Worldwide Box Office:  $159.8 million

Worldwide Box Office:  $116.7 million

Worldwide Box Office:  $151.1 million

Worldwide Box Office:  $6 million

Worldwide Box Office:  $114.9 million

Worldwide Box Office:  $1 million

 

There you have it — my favorite movies.  What are your favorites movies you saw in 2012?

Anthony

Peeps’ Friday ’80s Flashbacks

It’s Friday and time for me to feature three more of my favorite songs from my favorite decade of music — the 1980s.  After watching “Rock of Ages” last weekend, I’m leaning more to rock & roll this week.

“PHOTOGRAPH” — DEF LEPPARD

While “Rock of Ages” was the English rock band’s second American hit in 1983 from the “Pyromania” album, it only reached #16 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Def Leppard has a total of 15 Top 40 hits on the Hot 100.  Of those, four have hit the Top Ten:  “Pour Some Sugar On Me” (#2, 1987), “Hysteria” (#10, 1988), “Armageddon It” (#3, 1988), “Love Bites” (#1, 1988), all from the “Hysteria” album.

The band’s last hit was 1993’s “Miss You In A Heartbeat”, which barely reached the Top 40, peaking at #39.

My selection today was Def Leppard’s first hit in America.  “Photograph” made it up to #12 in 1983.
“SHADOWS OF THE NIGHT” — PAT BENATAR

New York rocker Pat Benatar has accumulated 15 Top 40 hits on the Billboard Hot 100.  However, surprisingly, only four of them have reached the Top Ten.

Her first hit, “Heartbreaker”, was released in 1979 and peaked at #23.  Two hits later, “Hit Me With Your Best Shot”, put out in 1980, became her first Top Ten hit reaching #9.

Her other three Top Ten hits were “Love Is A Battlefield” (#5, 1983), “We Belong” (#5, 1984), and “Invincible” (#10, 1985).

Today’s pick, “Shadows of the Night” reached #13 in 1982.

“I WANT TO KNOW WHAT LOVE IS” — FOREIGNER

The British-American rock band Foreigner amassed 16 Top 40 hits on the Billboard Hot 100.  It all started with “Feels Like The First Time” in 1977 that reached #4.

Other Top Ten hits include “Cold As Ice” (#6, 1977), “Hot Blooded (#3, 1978), “Double Vision” (#2, 1978), “Urgent” (#4, 1981), and “Waiting For A Girl Like You” (#2 for 10 weeks behind “Physical” from Olivia Newton-John).

“I Want To Know What Love Is” became the band’s first and only #1 on the Hot 100 in 1985.  Two more Top Ten hits would follow, “Say You Will” (#6, 1987) and “I Don’t Want To Live Without You” (#5, 1988).

Have a great weekend.

Peeps

My Girls Take Halloween Seriously

Halloween can be a spooky, fun time for parties or trick-or-treating.  This will be my fourth Halloween with Miss Gretel.  This year she is a gory version of Moaning Myrtle from the “Harry Potter” series.

Moaning Myrtle

Before I get to Gretel’s most recent Halloweens with Miss ABBA, check out these two adorable pictures from Halloween 2002 and 2003 of Gretel as a 1-year-old and a 2-year-old.

Gretel 2002Miss Clavel 2003

In 2009, our first Halloween together, Gretel was a “Vampire Bride”.

VampireBride

And, that same year, Miss ABBA could very well have been a “Ghostbuster”.  She “ain’t afraid o’ no ghost”!

ABBAGhost

In 2010, Gretel was impressed with “Avatar” and decided she was going to be one of the Na’vi, the blue people.

GretelAvatarABBA2010

Last Halloween, since we knew that it was likely going to be Miss ABBA’s last, I decided to dress her up and go trick-or-treating, too.  So, she went as a lobotomy patient, complete with a rubber brain, blood, and gauze.  (You just can’t see the brain and it did slip some from its original placement!)

ABBAHalloween2011

And, Miss ABBA even scored her own fun-sized “3 Musketeers” bar that she pretty much enjoyed by herself.  Okay, I took a small bite since I didn’t get one. 🙂

ABBATrickOrTreat2011

October 2011 was also a very mild one and Miss ABBA sat outside a lot.  We even had a dress-up day with my Lady Gaga wig from the previous year.  That day, much to her chagrin, Miss ABBA became “ABBA Gaga”.  The look on her face is priceless.  It’s like, “Dad, people are going to see me looking like this!”

ABBAGaga2ABBAGAGA2011

Last year, Gretel went as Hermione Granger, again, from the “Harry Potter” series.

Hermione

Last Saturday night, she went to a Halloween party at her friend, Zoe’s, and she was inspired by the movie, “Rock of Ages” and went as a rocker.  Rock On!

GretelRockofAges

In memory of Miss ABBA, one of my friends, Mary Baltikauski Nielsen, in Spring Valley, Illinois, made this cute pumpkin this Halloween.

ABBA Pumpkin

And, I can’t leave out my sister, Tammy.  In 1996, she sent me this picture of her at Halloween.

Tammy Cow

Happy Halloween!

Anthony

“Rock of Ages” — Should You Choose Tom Cruise or Def Leppard?

This past spring, I was really excited about the new Tom Cruise movie musical, “Rock of Ages”.

As the June release date neared, I decided that instead of catching it at first-run theaters, I’d wait for it at the cheap theater.  Then, I decided I’d just wait for the DVD release in October.  Did I make the right choice to wait instead of going on a date night (with popcorn and soda) that would have cost more than $30.  Or, was the $1.05 I spent at Redbox all the movie was worth?

We rented it this past weekend and now I wish that I had gone to the theaters this summer to see it and hear the rocking soundtrack with theater sound!

It was very entertaining and the music soundtrack, although rock heavy, featured many of the staples of my teens years and my 20s!  It was heavy on Foreigner, Journey, Pat Benatar, Def Leppard,  along with a dose of Night Ranger, Joan Jett & The Blackearts, AC/DC, and many others.  That alone was worth the rental price!

The movie focus on a nightclub on the Sunset Strip, “The Bourbon Room”.  The owner, Dennis (Alec Baldwin) and his right-hand man, Lonny (Russell Brand), are trying to find a way to keep the rock club open despite the back taxes they owe.

If that wasn’t enough, the religious, conservative wife of the mayor (Bryan Cranston), Patricia Whitmore (Catherine Zeta-Jones) is determined to close down the evil clubs on the Strip, starting with the Bourbon Room.

While not as compelling as she was in the movie, “Chicago”, Zeta-Jones is always a pleasure to watch and her kooky church musical number to Pat Benatar’s “Hit Me Your Best Shot” is awesome.

The key to saving the club from closing down is getting difficult washed-up rock star, Stacee Jaxx, played by Tom Cruise, to perform his last concert with his band before he goes solo.

To prepare for the role, it’s reported that Cruise practiced his singing five hours a day to do his own vocals instead of lip-synching.  When Cruise was performing, he was mesmerizing.  However, his alcohol infused haze leading up to those musical numbers dragged on a little too long.

The stars of the movie, Julianne Hough (“Dancing With The Stars”, “Footloose”) and Diego Boneta (“Pretty Little Liars”, “Mean Girls 2”), are beautiful and fun to watch.  As Sherrie, Hough plays a small town Oklahoma girl heading to Los Angeles to be a star.  Boneta plays Drew, a barback at the Bourbon Room, just waiting in the background to gain enough confidence to perform in front of a crowd as a rocker.

The storyline is nothing new.  I’ve seen it before in “Coyote Ugly” and “Burlesque”, but nevertheless, it’s fun and fresh with rock and roll!  You know the two young, sexy people are going to crush on each other, maybe fall in love, have a misunderstanding, break up, and possibly reconcile?

After a chance encounter with Stacee Jaxx at the club the night of his performance, both Sherrie and Drew decide it’s time to move on.  She gets a broken heart and Drew lands a new recording contract.  But, that doesn’t mean things are great in his world.

Luckily, Sherrie gets a job at “The Venus Club” teaching “aerobics”.  (Not really!)  However, that gives us the chance to meet the owner of the club, Justice Charlier, played by the amazing, beautiful, talented, and electrifying Mary J. Blige.  The screen just lit up everytime Mary J. was singing and performing.

In its opening weekend, “Rock of Ages” placed third at the box office with $14.4 million.  It was pretty much panned by critics and only grossed $55.5 million and considered a failure.  The movie’s budget was $75 million.

Gretel was impressed by the whole rock musical plot line and went to Halloween party Saturday night as a rocker!

By the way, I only covered her eyes once in a steamy, well choreographed number between Stacee Jaxx and Constance Sack, a reporter for “Rolling Stone” magazine, played by Makin Akerman.

And, I guess I was ready for a rock musical before I even knew about this movie.  This picture is from last Halloween as I rocked Gretel’s Hermione Granger (“Harry Potter” series) wig.

Actually, that wig on me looked as bad as some of the wigs on the actors in the movie.

So, when it comes to “Rock of Ages”, should you choose Def Leppard’s 1983 #1 Billboard Rock track (#16 on the Billboard Hot 100) or this movie?  While I liked the Def Leppard song, “Rock of Ages”, I liked “Photograph” more.

I choose the movie.  “Rock of Ages” was very enjoyable and I would watch it again.  It didn’t break any new ground for musicals, but I didn’t go into it expecting that.  If you want to be entertained for two hours, definitely rent it.

GRADE:  B

Anthony