Friday, November 13, 2015

cotton balls and hot glue, stop motion style

Family movie night can be a bit tricky for us.  We do a lot of head scratching at our favorite movie rental place, Jet Video. We now have one child who does not like anything too sad, another who would like there to be a 13 at the end of its movie rating and some action, suspense, and maybe an explosion or two to go along with it all, and one who would prefer to watch something about...well, something fuzzy.  We have some favorites that everyone is happy about, but usually, compromises must be made.

One movie that we selected recently was met with looks of terror and gnashing of teeth,.  It was none other than the Lego Brickumentary -- partly because, I do believe, it had -umentary at the end of it.  And partly because some people in this family who actually still love to build with Lego now only do it in the attic when they are really only there to help their siblings build.

But viewing that movie has led to this:

It's a lego building resurgence.  And it is awesome.  In this case at least, I love the mess. It is, after all, in the attic.  And apparently there was an exploding clown.  So this activity is PG-13.  And everyone is happy.

And I won't mention that a certain too-old-for-Legos child made a stop motion Lego movie as a book report for school last year.  Nope.  I won't mention that.

And so, compromises last week falling in favor of the older crowd, (Tomorrowland, thoroughly enjoyed by all, and leading to a common saying now between us:  keep asking me questions and I will shut down), it was Elliott's turn to have the ultimate decision.  So while other customers came in, easily, chose a video, paid, and left (huh? who does that?) we waited for a decision made in his favor.

The result? We rented and watched the Shaun the Sheep Movie.  I know.  We live large and wild.  It was met with varying levels of attempted enthusiasm (it is Friday evening, after all, and children are tired and efforts at forced enthusiasm are limited and hence...the reason we have movie night) and it may be that I pretended not to hear the child who asked, If I wanted to, could I just go to bed instead?  
But I must say, once settled in, and once talking to each other was limited, which sometimes on Friday night can be for the best, it was a thoroughly enjoyable movie.  And it led to this the next day:

We use the Lego Movie App for stop motion movie making here.  I am sure there are a lot of good options out there.  But this is the one my tech savvy children found.  And it works very well for them.

I could pretend that Elliott's pajamas were a gift, and that all his organic noncommercialized pjs were in the wash, and that it was early in the morning still.  But none of those things are true.  It was midday.  Afternoon even.  And I bought those pajamas.  Because we were on a road trip and options to replace a pair that suddenly and unexpectedly gave up their elasticity and were becoming obscene in the campground were limited.  But really, honestly, even that would be partly a fib, because I bought these pajamas knowing that Elliott would love them.  He has a bit of a Minion crush.  And a Minion-esque quality to him, at times.  And he does love them.  Which is why he is wearing them even as the sun is just beginning to go down.  So judge not the pjs.

We had gotten a few minutes into Shaun and Julia asked, is there no talking in this movie?  She was only slightly horrified.  But soon, we were all completely enjoying it.  And the wordlessness of the movie was forgotten because there was so much to see.  And we completely enjoyed the bonus feature/behind the scenes clips as well.  Showing how these movies were made.

I think the wordlessness inspired attention to the artistry of the movie and a fascination with how it was made and the materials used.  So I am going to go wordless here for a bit.

I will interrupt this wordlessness here to say, ever so quietly and unobtrusively, that my husband has the patience of Job. And asbestos fingers. And may no longer be able to be identified by his fingerprints.

Now, shhhh.

And so, we had a stop motion theater in our breakfast nook for a bit.  Complete with sun shielding shower curtain.  Very fancy stuff.  Which made me think of the part of the Lego Documentary in which there is a young man who is making stop motion movies in his parents garage.  Which is totally cool.  And totally, well, it's okay, we don't have a garage.

And I realized, after looking through the pictures I was able to snap when my fingers weren't sticking together, that I had kind of made my own version of a stop motion movie.

And it was all...quite...awesome.

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