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MOVIE REVIEW: Wonder Teaches Us The Importance Of Kindness And Acceptance

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VVNG- We all know that humans are capable of doing pretty crappy things. They often steal mail, text while they drive, dump their trash in the desert, etc. This is all very demoralizing the hear about and, unfortunately, those are the types of things that stand out and what we usually focus on, instead of in the actions of the remarkable people who always try their hardest to be loving. This movie reminds us that there are still plenty of decent human beings out there whose kindness and love have the power to overshadow any negativity that oozes out of unpleasant individuals.

Auggie Pullman (played superbly by Jacob Tremblay) is a boy who was born with a very rare facial condition called Treacher Collins syndrome. Because of his condition, he has always been stared at and has never felt like he fits in. Having always been homeschooled, due to the fact that he has been in and out of surgery all of his life, his awesome parents (not being sarcastic) decide it’s time for him to attend an actual school to start the fifth grade. Auggie is soon bullied and ostracized by his peers, but with the love and support of his friends and family, and his own extraordinary spirit, he will undoubtedly overcome any ignorance and hate that is unjustly directed towards him. Ultimately coming out on top as a positive inspiration to anyone lucky enough to have the pleasure of meeting him.

I give Wonder, the “Checky Seal of Approval!” NOBODY should go through the things Auggie experiences. I know he is fictional, but his character perfectly exemplifies what a lot of people might be going through (#standwithkeaton). Real or not, plenty of individuals can see this as an example that things can definitely get better in the future. Wonder is able to show us that sometimes people act despicably because of their environment, or simply because they don’t know how to react when someone looks different than them. The filmmakers are able to show how nasty certain men, women, and children can be towards others. However, it also highlights the caring and benevolent humans who are still out there, and how their acts of kindness are able to shine brightly in the darkest of situations.

The entire cast is great, and the way they told the story from the perspective of multiple characters was a great way to show us more than just the surface of what they were all going through. The only thing I didn’t like was the dog storyline, it seemed a bit forced and it felt like it was just added to add more sadness to the already heart-wrenching story. Other than that, I say this flick is a must-see for everyone (especially kiddos) who might not realize that there are going to be lots of people they will eventually interact with that are different than them and that it is NEVER ok to be mean to them, especially for something no one has any control over. You might cry, you might get mad, but you are surely going to enjoy this uplifting and inspiring story.

So, what did you think of Wonder? Do you agree or disagree with me? Which flick are you checking out this week? Let me know in the comments below. Have a great day at the movies and don’t forget to save me some popcorn.

Official Synopsis: Based on the New York Times bestseller, WONDER tells the incredibly inspiring and heartwarming story of August Pullman, a boy with facial differences who enters fifth grade, attending a mainstream elementary school for the first time.

Ezequiel T (a.k.a., El Checky) is a Translator with a lifelong passion for films. He has been reviewing movies for years and has been watching, discussing and sometimes even making them for as long as he can remember. When reviewing them, he has a simple way of recommending a good movie by giving it The “Checky™ Seal Of Approval!” which is due to his childhood nickname. He currently lives in Victorville, CA with his wife of 12 years, Joanna.

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Movie Reviews: Birds of Prey and Sonic the Hedgehog

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Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn – Margot Robbie, Marie Elizabeth Winstead, Jurnee Smollet-Bell, Rosie Perez and Ewan McGregor.

Raise your hand if you have a crazy break up story. Ok, now raise your hand if you’ve ever blown up a factory (like Harley does in this movie) as a symbolic gesture of independence from your former partner. WAIT!!! You know what? Nevermind, don’t raise it. I don’t want to testify against you in court. Instead, why don’t you just go watch this flick and enjoy the absolutely bonkers aftermath of The Joker and Harley Quinn’s toxic relationship? Maybe it will help make you realize that your former flame isn’t as bad as you remember him/her when you compare them to the over-the-top events that take place in this uniquely bizarre film. 

As soon as Mr. J (literally) kicks Harley to the curb, everyone in Gotham who has beef with her finds out she’s not protected anymore and starts trying to get payback for whatever ludicrous thing she might have done to them. Good thing is that this vivacious babe is no damsel in distress. She is strong, capable, and as smart as she is adorable. So, whoever is foolish enough to try and cross the incomparable Ms. Quinn, is in for an outrageously topsy turvy world of hurt. 

This movie isn’t JUST about Harley, though, there are also other characters who appear in the movie that make up the titular “Birds”. While there’s nothing wrong with any of them, in fact, they are pretty freaking badass, they don’t really get to shine as much as they undoubtedly could. This is a bummer because they kind of end up feeling like they were an afterthought, and Harley should have just had the whole movie to herself and it would have still been great. Also, I know this movie is Rated – R, but sometimes it was TOO dark like it didn’t know where the line was or didn’t care that it crossed it a few times. I don’t mind violence, but when it’s done for no reason other than to be edgy, it just makes me uncomfortable. Aside from that, this is a very entertaining movie that is as vibrant, lively and chaotic as our favorite spunky, fun-loving and insanely violent bad girl. 

Score: “Checky™ Sticker of Tolerance!”

Official Synopsis: It’s open season on Harley Quinn when her explosive breakup with the Joker puts a big fat target on her back. Unprotected and on the run, Quinn faces the wrath of narcissistic crime boss Black Mask, his right-hand man, Victor Zsasz, and every other thug in the city. But things soon even out for Harley when she becomes unexpected allies with three deadly women — Huntress, Black Canary and Renee Montoya.

Sonic the Hedgehog – Jim Carrey, James Marsden, Ben Schwartz (as Sonic’s Voice)

One of the best memories I have of my childhood is when my parents got my brothers and me a Sega Genesis in the 90s. I still remember the first time we used it. We unboxed and connected everything, popped in the Sonic the Hedgehog video game, turned it on, got goosebumps when we heard the glorious “Segaaaaaa” jingle and were immediately blown away as soon as we started playing with the little blue blur. We spent hours and hours trying to get through all of the levels in the game, yelling when Sonic would lose his rings, stressing out when he would almost drown, and celebrating everytime we defeated Dr. Robotnick. 

I kept playing Sonic the Hedgehog games well into my adult years and have always had a special place in my heart for the charismatic speed demon, and I’m sure this is true for a lot of you as well. My expectations for this movie were super low because I never thought a movie would be good enough for a character that brought me so much joy, but I actually ended up liking it a lot.

Sometimes the jokes in the movie don’t land, there is a henchman that is pretty useless, and Jim Carrey’s performance is at times a BIT too wacky and cringey, but for the most part, this is a very delightful and surprisingly heartwarming flick. 

James Marsden is wonderful, charming and likeable. Jim Carrey is at his most Jim Carreyest ever, and the majority of his performance is hilarious and brilliant. The action sequences are top notch when they are (super) fast-paced, and dazzlingly impressive when Sonic is going so fast that everything around him slows down. Also, there’s a ton of moments that are incredibly sweet and help make this movie stand out from other video game adaptations.

You should definitely go watch this movie if you want to relive your childhood, hear your kiddos laugh, and/or just enjoy an amusing and splendid family flick. Just make sure you aren’t too hyped up after it’s over that you get a speeding ticket on the way home.

Score: “Checky™ Sticker of Tolerance!”

Official Synopsis: Sonic tries to navigate the complexities of life on Earth with his newfound best friend — a human named Tom Wachowski. They must soon join forces to prevent the evil Dr. Robotnik from capturing Sonic and using his powers for world domination.

What did you think of Harley and/or Sonic? Do you agree or disagree with me? Which flick are you checking out this week? Let me know in the comments below. Have a great day at the movies, and don’t forget to save me some popcorn.

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Swedish artist Tove Lo films latest video “Bikini Porn” in Victorville and Hesperia

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VICTORVILLE, Calif. (VVNG.com) — Swedish singer-songwriter Tove Lo, premiered her latest music video today titled “Bikini Porn” and if you recognize some of the scenes, that’s because it was filmed in the cities of Victorville and Hesperia.

Ebba Tove Elsa Nilsson or better known by her fans as Tove Lo was born on October 29, 1987, and is referred to as “Sweden’s darkest pop export” by Rolling Stone. She is known for her raw, grunge-influenced take on pop music.

The singer who has 1.8 million followers on Instagram shared her latest video with the world on Friday, January 17, 2020, and said, “anyone shocked it’s basically me running around in a bikini? Didn’t think so.”

The nearly 3-minute long video shows the dancer dressed in various different colored bikinis as she dances around the desert, a bar, elevator, hotel pool, gym, and even on the back of a flat-bed trailer.

In one scene, the barefooted singer is dressed in a leopard print one-piece bikini as she’s dancing around the inside of a CD shop before she’s removed and taken to the parking lot.

During a recent interview with Rolling Stone, the singer told the magazine this video was very fun and very bizarre to shoot. “There were only seven of us in a van as the crew driving around Victorville. Been a while since I did a run and gun shoot; I loved it!”

Tove Lo ended her Instagram post by thanking the good people of Victorville and Hesperia. “Thank you for being so nice and for not calling the cops on me. Time to drink champagne all day xx.”

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Mandatory Credit: Photo by Ibl/Shutterstock (9369274c) Tove Lo Grammis Awards, Grand Hotel, Stockholm, Sweden – 08 Feb 2018
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Santa Fe Trading Co. hosting holiday fair in Old Town Victorville

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VICTORVILLE, Calif. (VVNG.com) — With the holidays quickly approaching and the malls busier than ever, Santa Fe Trading Co is hosting a holiday art and craft fair and a chance at more unique gifts.

The fair is boasting over 80+ vendors offering hand-crafted items, gifts, and novelties. The hours for the event are 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. this Saturday, Dec. 21. 

Some of the items that will be offered include crochet items, metal work, paintings, jewelry, clothing, homemade dog treats, shabby chic furniture and more. 

In addition to vendors, there will also be Christmas carolers,  performances by “Harmonology,” and the Country Crossroads band throughout the event. Artist Sydney Encarnacion will also be singing from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Coleen Quinn from Y102 will also be in attendance doing a live remote show from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

The event is for all ages and Santa Claus will also be in attendance and available for visits and pictures during the event. 

Refreshments will be provided by D’vine wine bar and include wine and beer for $5.00 and hot chocolate for $2.00. Food will also be offered and choices include tacos, burgers, bbq, and hot dogs. 

Santa Fe Trading Co. is located at 15464 7th St in “Old Town,” Victorville. Parking is limited on-site but street parking is available as well. 

Though this is not classified as a cash-only event it is recommended to bring cash as some vendors do not accept cards.

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