Zootopia

I awoke and watched CBS This Morning. In the chef segment, Matthew Jennings gave his signature dishes: cider brined fried chicken, “ugly potaotes” with chorizo crema, butter lettuce and roasted beef salad with grilled avocado and crispy garlic, black barley salad with feta and soft herbs, pickled green plums and green garlic, blood orange shandy, grilled banana bread with crème fraiche ice cream. I checked the American Top 40 playlist for the weekend. The Top 10 songs on March 11, 1973 were “Daddy’s Home,” “Rocky Mountain High,” “The Cover of ‘Rolling Stone’,” “Crocodile Rock,” “Also Sprach Zarathustra,” “Love Train,” “Could It Be I’m Falling in Love,” “Last Song,” “Dueling Banjos,” and “Killing Me Softly with His Song.” W ith the rain coming down, I didn’t want to go outside to do my normal chores. I went out to the Grand Lake Theatre for “Zootopia.” Kids were lined up ahead of me, and the building opened fifteen minutes before the first showing, which was at 11 o’clock and in 3D. It was a long movie, and it seemed too long. Judy Hopps is the main character, and we see quite a bit of her childhood in the introduction. Now it this were one of your Los Angeles detective stories like “Chinatown,” we wouldn’t have seen Jake Gittes in a school play or confronting a bully. We do see if here because this is a movie for children. Judy is one of your perky, energetic characters who is like the recent Joy in “Inside Out.” Ginnifer Goodwin is the voice of Judy. There is a lot of box office strategy in making a young female character the center of the story. If Nick Wilde, the fox, was the sole focus of the story, it would have moved along more like a Raymond Chandler adaptation. Instead, we get scenes of a small female trying to deal with being the odd rabbit out. There are some annoying comments about the male workplace and even attitudes towards race. I wished that I could watch a movie that is closer to being just entertainment. One scene was a reference to the wedding sequence in “The Godfather.” It was rather amusing, but the children in the audience couldn’t have understood it. Some of these movie references are very irritating. I don’t want to know which movies the filmmakers have seen. The story has the adversaries Judy and Nick thrown together to solve a mystery, making this movie seem a bit like a Disney version of “48 Hrs.” Nick would be the Eddie Murphy character. Judy starts off her police work as a meter maid. I would think that in real life, most women would be satisfied with such a job. I don’t see any meter maids in my town who are so intent on ticketing cars. The foot chase sequence was rather amusing and had an element of Gulliver’s Travels to it. The sloth scene was another of those jokes that was aimed at adults who had to deal with places like the DMV, but I didn’t like the fact that it was drawn out and took a lot of time. Turning slowness into humor just feels slow. The movie feels like it’s coming to an end but goes on, though not quite like “Into the Woods” did. I was getting tired of the movie at the point where Judy makes the awkward comments to the press. I watched the Shakira character at the end, wondering what she was there in the first place. The one song on the soundtrack I recognized was “Everybody Hurts.” I think the movie wore down the youngest of the children in the audience. The others didn’t applaud at the end. The movie appears to be a hit, though, as this was the first big family movie since “Kung Fu Panda 3.” “Zootopia” seemed to be getting good reviews, although I would have preferred seeing either a detective story or a Disney animated movie with talking animals, not a mixture of both. One thing that the movie made me think about was how I cannot have a dog in my apartment building. It wouldn’t be a good life for the dog, anyway, because I’m away from home so much. I feel that I should note that “Zootopia” is not the title of a U2 album. I went home in the rain and went grocery shopping before the hard rain hit. I watched an All in the Family episode with Cleavon Little and Demond Wilson as thieves. I watched the Tonight Show from September 23, 1976 with Orson Welles, Orson Bean, Carol Lawrence, and Kay Lenz. Orson Welles talked about the days of radio, and how Laurence Olivier struggled with reading from a script. Kay Lenz said that she was so focused on her career that she didn’t see herself getting married for a long time, but she would get married to David Cassidy on April 3, 1977. I didn’t watch the Wonder Woman episode with the gorilla. The Star Trek episode on Me TV was “This Side of Paradise,” the title taken from the poem “Tiare Tahiti” by Rupert Brooke. I didn’t detect any traces of F. Scott Fitzgerald. I thought that Spock’s face looked slightly green, but his neck didn’t. He said that for the first time in his life, he felt happy, although it was under the influence of spores, almost like the Invasion of the Body Snatchers. The air date was March 2, 1967, only two months before people would hear the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper album. With the rain coming down so steadily, I didn’t go out to buy a burrito. I watched the ten o’clock news. I wished I didn’t have to hear so much about Donald Trump every day. He seems to be changing American politics for the worse. The public shares a lot of the blame for this horrible situation for their true stupidity. I have never read a Pat Conroy novel, although I have seen the movie versions of “The Great Santini” and “The Prince of Tides.” The California basketball team had a good game. In four weeks, I will go back to the Coliseum for the exhibition game between the A’s and the Giants in my new seat after being in the old location for twenty years. I thought about the rain and the snow in the mountains and the Russian River. I wished I didn’t have to go back to work. I was concerned about my feet and how they get so sore after a day’s work. Some of the people who died on March 6 include Davy Crockett (1836), John Philip Sousa (1932), Margaret Dumont (1965), Pearl S. Buck (1973), Adolph Caesar (1984), Melina Mercouri (1994), and Teresa Wright (2005). Today is a birthday for Tom Arnold (57), Kiki Dee (69), Rob Reiner (69), and Mary Wilson (72).

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