Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Sizzlers on Queue - RCS7 Concert, Depraved Girls, Spider-Man & Spice Girls the Musical

There is an exciting buzz whirling around my social calendar these days. At work, I have finally ensnared an account that I've worked so hard on in the last 8 months of my life - and this really calls for a celebration. Cooperating with my personal triumphs are a few events that I have already marked my calendar for! There's a concert, a movie, a hilarious if a tad racy television series and a new musical in the Westend that I shall be saving up for in the first quarter of 2013. And I would like to share these here - to get me breathing space from writing about the movies.


The first item crept up from social media. And the buzz is too audible to be ignored. Something hot - and exciting - is cooking up at the Music Museum. This involves Ryan Cayabyab, theatre director Rito Asilo ("Into the Woods", "Vagina Monologues", "The Male Voice", "Rachel Corie"), and uber-choreographer Dexter Santos ("Orosman and Zafira", "Rizal X", "Bona"). Then there's this line-up of 7 new singers collectively called RCS - the Ryan Cayabyab Singers who shall try to live up to the standard that the aforementioned names have been known for! Jolina Magdangal will be doing a special number. RCS is Mr.Cayabyab's latest singing group - a pastiche of excellent vocal performers handpicked by Mr. C as the new generation's version of Smokey Mountain.

I've read that the eclectic line up of numbers includes "Moves Like Jagger" mashed up with "Mamang Kutsero" (now how would that sound?); there's also the show tune "Hard Work", a tap dance number, a fully choreographed "Katy" Medley, a Metro Pop Medley, and several other numbers that shall spotlight bravado singing from this youthful group - all employing Mr. Cayabyab's style. If I am too excited for this, it's because I've missed the thrill and magic of beautiful singing and heart warming music sung live before me! And I am grateful to my dear, dear honey for his early gift! Love and kisses!

So if you are free on July 7th, I may just see you at the Music Museum at 7:30 PM. For reservations, call 0917-8743499 or 6685559.


Sam Raimi's "Spider-Man 3" is really hard to beat! And we're quite curious why Spidey's story needed retelling when the last 3 films about the webslinger were narratively compact. However, this doesn't stop us from wanting to watch the "untold story" in Marc Webb's "The Amazing Spider-Man". In fact, I'm looking forward to Peter Parker (played by Andrew Garfield) pinning down his campus bullies - again! Then there's Peter falling in love with Gwen Stacy (played by Emma Stone). Where is Mary Jane? This is the battle between an arachnid and a reptile. Who win win?

I'm more excited with the supporting cast which has Sally Field playing Aunt May, Martin Sheen as Uncle Ben, cutie Campbell Scott playing Richard Parker, and C. Thomas Howell finally returning to blockbuster territory. Rhys Ifans plays The Lizard!


If the previous Spider-man movies glazed over the mystery behind Peter Parker's parentage, this "version" tackles the subject head on. In fact, it explains the motivations of the young protagonist. It also tries to weave a tale about Peter's brilliant father (Campbell Scott) who has been working on Cross-Species Experimentation, up until Mr. & Mrs. Parker both had to run away, leaving the young Peter under the care of Aunt May and Uncle Ben. This story is pretty significant because it is almost contributory to the evolution of Peter who, as everyone knows, has been bitten by a radioactive spider during the latter's visit at his father's former scientific laboratory.

Gwen Stacy (the fabulous Emma Stone) is Peter's dream girl in school; the smart and popular girl who stood for Peter while he was being bullied by Flash (Chris Zylka), the campus jock. While Peter acclimatizes with his powers, Gwen's dad (Denis Leary), NYPD's head honcho, is running after "this masked vigilante" unaware that he was indeed Gwen's suitor. But life of a super hero opens windows of dangers, and lives will somehow fall. Meanwhile, scientist Dr. Curt Connors (Rhys Ifans) has started human trials on himself. Soon, his amputated stump grows an arm. But along with this, he develops reptilian scales, intermittently transforming into a giant reptile. In the process, he wrecks havoc in an embattled New York City. Will Spider-Man be adequately equipped to stop The Lizard?


The Amazing Spider-Man is a triumph of storytelling. It has cooked up a compelling backstory that involves the family and a little of young romance - and lots of action that doesn't rely on a dizzying array of CG's and improbable Transformer-style adrenaline bravado. Everything in the "Amazing Spider-Man" is well tempered. Part of its narrative success is in the spectacular cast. Andrew Garfield imbues Peter Parker and his alter-ego with enough emotive heft, you actually feel for him all through his ordeal. Emma Stone radiates with warmth and magic that you suddenly forget that Spidey's more popular girl is someone named "Mary Jane". The two share cinematic magic on screen (and off). Mary Jane is supposedly Peter's classmate too so we might expect her in one of the future sequels; maybe as Gwen's "rival". Now, I'm looking forward to that!

This was far from the disappointment that I kind of expected.

Watch it! Watch it! Watch it! 

Spider-Man and Gwen Stacy
Andrew Garfield is Peter Parker


I've "accidentally" had the chance to watch the TV series "The Girl's Guide to Depravity". This series is inspired by a blog (Heather Rutman's) so this rightfully caught my attention. Go, go, bloggers! :)

The series follows the misadventures of best friends Lizzie (Sally Golan) and Samantha (Rebecca Blumhagen) as they envision and follow a set of rules that shall govern their having fun, their dating and sleeping around, as they take measures to avoid getting hurt. The rules are a narcissistic coterie of funny lines: "There's more than one way to f**ck a man"; "Free drinks taste better", "The best way to get over a man is to get under another man", "There's no friend in ex-boyfriend", "Don't shit where you drink", etc. Each 30-minute episode is headlined with eye-catching titles: "The Breakup Rule", "The Last Woman Standing Rule", "The Vibrator Rule", "The Bitch Rule", "The Fuck Buddy Rule", "The Pill Rule", "The Getting His Attention Rule", etc. Now tell me that doesn't interest you, girl friend?

Having said that, this series is rather sexually explicit, both thematically as well as visually. In fact, I was taken aback as early as the first episode where Sam cavorts with a hunky guy on their third date ("the shag him already" date). The scenes are racy and rather too graphic for prime time viewing. Naked bodies hump away like there's no tomorrow with breasts and asses gyrating in wild abandon, I was blushing until the next scene! There indeed is a surfeit of good looking people. Moreover, the irreverent humor and naughty situations push the limits of boobtube boundaries. In fact, it makes "Sex and the City" seem like a Nickelodeon series. If you think I am exaggerating, give it a watch.

Why is it watchable? Because it takes risks, thus has refreshing presentation. More importantly, it is hilarious! It takes us inside intimate powder room mentality of girl friends and how sexual politics is being played these days! It is, I repeat, explicit. This is modern day erotica! If you're timid, for Pete's sake, keep away from this series! Don't say I didn't warn you!


Lastly, the Spice Girls have "reunited" in London to help drum up interest for "Viva Forever" - a new musical based on the hit songs of the biggest girl group of the 90's. The musical will be produced by Judy Craymer, the same think-tank behind the very successful "Mamma Mia!" With songs like "Wanna Be", "Say You'll Be There", "Mama", etc. - how can this musical fail? Will we get a theatrical run in Manila? We've successfully brought "Mamma Mia!" to our shores last February so why not this?

As I've a couple of weeks worth of holiday sometime in early 2013, I shall probably be able to sashay in the Westend for "Viva Forever" - so I am keeping my fingers crossed! Let's all do!

The Spice Girls reunited last June 26 in London. This photo's courtesy of PA's Ian West. News courtesy of Yahoo Music's "Stop the Presses". 


Anonymous said...

I love this version of spiderman. I love emma stone's gwen stacy. Also gotta hand it to andrew garfield. I watched this reading this review and learning that this is from the same director who did 500 days of summer, marc webb.

I didn't get the last line by peter parker though, where he was being lectured by the teacher about "making promises", and making gwen stacy smile. What did peter say?


Cathy Pena said...

@ Juan:My brother asked me the same thing while watching the movie. The teacher told him he shouldn't make promises he can't keep. Then he whispered to Gwen: "Except the best ones." :)