Thursday, May 15, 2014

Godzilla 2014 Review - Monster with Testicular Fortitude

If you were that Saturday night ‘B’ movie watcher, or Sunday afternoon waiting on Godzilla to play on television, then you may be a little surprised if you go to see the newest version of the ageless monster, Godzilla.

This review may contain SPOILERS, but really how much of a spoiler can it be. It’s Godzilla.

I wasn’t really a big Godzilla buff, back in the day, I thought the Matthew Broderick one was decent, but the best one I saw was the Japanese Godzilla 2000.  But when I saw the destruction, the look and feel of a dystopian world, all in this new preview, I knew I had to see this one.

I went to the premiere showing with my niece and friend. My friend and for anonymity, we call him Tom. Which is not his name, it sounds like ‘Tom’ but it’s not.

Tom is a consummate movie lover. A good one to have around, although I will wager that he won’t go see another movie with me. Especially my niece, who by genetics, talks as loud as I do.

We sat in the very last row in a pretty empty theater watching the 3D version. I took my Tums for motion sickness and Advil for that 3D headache. I was ready to go.

SPOILER – The story is about a monster, a big monster., But there is a twist about it. Not about the creation of the monster, just the monster storyline.

As far as a story goes, hands down this was the most original of all. Pay attention to the opening credits and the opening scene. Don’t blink, you’ll be asking the person next to you what the time line is. To me, Godzilla doesn’t really look different, just less cheesy.

The acting is good, really good and nothing is overdone. Except the Japanese Doctor, who when asked what it was, turned with drama and seriousness, twitched his upper lip, and while looking at his peers, said in a deep heavily lazed Dialect, “Gah-zheeela”

I laughed. No one else did. Tom nudged me to stop. I’m still not convinced that it wasn’t an inside joke on set.

Visually, the movie is stunning. For those who like destruction … it’s there. For those who want a glimpse into a post apocalypse world, it has it (SPOILER) they show a quarantined city, fifteen years later.

If you hate 3D because it makes you sick and the cinematographer goes overboard, than this is the 3D movie for you. Nothing overdone or bad camera movements that will make you sick. I know, I am sensitive to it. At one point I was tricked. First time sitting in the back row, the heads of the guys in front kept bobbing into the picture and for a split second I thought the 3D was super realistic.

The movie is nonstop action and fun, and it pulls at the heartstrings. And SPOILER, you find yourself cheering for Godzilla. And yes, I'll admit it. I teared up. Then again, I tear up when I watch The Voice.

The thing that I liked best was the trailers didn’t give it away. It didn’t give you the whole movie in 2 minutes. They gave nothing away. In fact they were misleading in a good way.

At one point, SPOILER I was watching them battle on the West Coast and I leaned to Tom and said, “How the heck are they gonna make it all the way to the East then  Paris.”

“What are you talking about?” he asked.

“The trailer showed a destroyed Statue of Liberty and Eiffel Tower.”

“Uh, Jack, that was the Vegas scene.”

Ahhhhh. The editors were very crafty.

Anyhow, I highly recommend this move, it’s a fun summer one. And just one final note: I won't say where or when, but I will say, let me know if I am the only one that saw a Giant, swinging, Yellow Testicle.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Living in the 'Spectrum'

I always said, ‘Forty means freedom’. Being a young mother, by the time I reached forty, my kids would all be fifteen and older no need for a babysitter and I could enjoy my life.  If twenty years ago, someone told me that at nearly fifty years old, this would be my life, I would have said, “No way, no how. I am much too selfish for that. When my kids are old, it’s me time.”

Little did I know that in my forties a bright little blonde haired blue eye boy would change my world. Everything about my world. Everything about me.

God is pretty cool. His has this keen foresight, thing.  Like giving me not only the passion and love for writing, but the gift to do so and the ability to make a living at it at just the right time. I am truly blessed in every capacity. But I honestly believe there is a master plan, There’s a reason I am able to be a full time writer. God was like, “She’s got to be home, be available and ready.  Eh.. let’s let her have this writing thing. Her world is about to go insane.”

That’s what happens when you have a child in the home on the spectrum. It’s insane. I searched you know. High and low on the web for answers, for people like me and my daughter. But either they won’t step forward or her and I are the only ones that feel this way.

My grandson is my life. He came into my life at my lowest point, raised me up, restored my faith, made me feel and I promised that I would do everything for him that I could and try to do more for him than I could for my own kids. He has lived with me since day one.

I support him financially and emotionally. My daughter, I want her to be the best mother she can be and she is awesome. I had to work when she was a baby, so since I am blessed, I tell her stay home, be a mom, be here, I got this.

We kinda knew when my grandson wasn’t speaking .. something was up. He would say words then a week later not say them. He babbled like a rush hour traffic driver listening to the radio and singing a song he didn’t know the lyrics to. Noise and sounds no words. He was diagnosed with Apraxia and hence, began speech therapy.

I live by the clock, I sleep very little, have my writing times laid out. What I do, every day is a must to make a living.

Speech fit in, but even though his speech progressed, something was off. He wasn’t progressing cognitively or socially. As bright and funny and smart as he is … He was different, but then so am I.

Okay, so what, he watched Japanese youtube toy review videos for hours on end. I listen to the same song for hours. Recently he was officially diagnosed with PDD-NOS. Pervasive Developmental Disorder. It’s a form of autism.  With that official diagnosis, when you are on Medicaid, in comes the state.

Suddenly, following  the diagnosis comes the throes of people the state says has to help you. TSS Worker, BHC worker, DART. IEP. Ug! Someone take me off of this merry go round.

Not including the speech pathology which I take him to, all of these people are now in my home, every day, several hours a day. And they don’t just work with my grandson, one adult, me or my daughter must be present. Since I have two other granddaughters. Veronica wins baby duty and I sit with the workers. It is draining. I not only watch them work with him, I have to be instructed on how to be a parent and good guardian. God help me if I look at my phone to do emails.

There was so much going on, every day, so many hours a day, that I removed him from preschool. Not so much for him, but for me. I can only do so much. Work all night, get up after two hours, take him to school,, take him to speech, bring him home for four hours of therapy.

I don’t know how parents who work 9 – 5 jobs do this. If I wasn’t a writer, I don’t know how we’d handle this.

Don’t get me wrong, the workers are great, they are sweet, caring and love their jobs. But there’s no instruction booklet with this. No one tells you what it’s going to be like. Suddenly people are in your home, all the time. The bright side is, the house has never been more tidy.

I have one worker telling me , any routine is a good routine. The other telling me, ‘Yes, you have a routine, but it’s not normal.”

Under whose standards?  It’s normal to me. I want to scream at times, “I know how important a schedule is. I HAD one, now I don’t.”

They told me to stop putting the cookies out on the counter and to regulate them. “Kids can only have a snack when you say so, not when they want.”


Kindergarten is in the fall, and he may or may not get in. Tomorrow is five places for paperwork, a dentist visit with, none the less a dentist who specializes with working with autistic children. All for the K Eval on Monday. Which he may or may not pass  IF he passes, then we now have summer school to get him ready, with therapy, for regular school.

I know it’s all for the best, it’s all to get him where he needs to be. But no one told us what this all entailed. Why isn't there a single support website that tells you how life is going to be AFTER the workers step in.

I want to pull out my hair. My poor daughter is so stressed. My grandson, well, he just talks about what he wants to talk about, Legos and Heroes and tells the therapist, “I’m done, go away.”

I wished that worked for us. I am still looking for answers, someone to say, it gets easier.

As of now, living with an autistic child seemed a heck of a lot easier before we got help.