Monthly Archives: March 2011
Anne of Green Gables by L.M Montgomery is a classic book. It is about a young girl named Anne(“Ann with an e”) Shirley. She was orphaned at a very young age and lived in several foster homes and orphanages.
Beginning of the stories …………………………………
Anne Shirley’s parents died of fever when she was just 3 years old. Mrs. Thomas, a woman that knew Anne’s parents well, took her in, even though she was poor and had a drunken husband. Anne lived with them until she was eight. She helped look after the Thomas children, which took a lot of looking after. Even though the work was hard, Anne still found time to imagine and wander in the woods, always with a book in her hand. I admire her way of using her imagination to make reality seem more appealing or attractive. Her famous quote :”Tomorrow is always fresh with no mistakes in it.”
Matthew Cuthbert is Surprised…………….
“I suppose you are Mr.Matthew Cuthbert of Green Gables?” she said in a peculiarly clear, sweet voice. “I’m very glad to see you,I was beginning to be afraid you weren’t coming for me and I was imagining all the things that might have happened to prevent you.”
Shy Matthew Cuthbert was so astounded to find a chatty out-going girl waiting for him at the train station, when he was sent to pick up a boy! But alas, he could not leave a child at a train station anyhow, no matter what mistake had been made, so all questions and explanations might as well be deferred until he was safely back at Green Gables.
“Isn’t that beautiful? What did that tree, leaning out from the bank, all white and lacy, make you think of?” she asked.
“Well now, I dunno,” said Matthew.
“Why, a bride, of course—a bride all in white with a lovely misty veil.”
Anne was such an imaginative girl! I adore her, and I think if anyone was such an optimistic girl with such an imagination, they would be perfectly happy. Anne talked and talked about the scenery and about many different subjects until I thought her tongue must be hinged in the middle. They reached the Avenue, which its beauty seemed to strike the child dumb. Passing Barry’s pond, Anne gave it a new name- the Lake of Shining Waters. Finally Anne realized they had reached the Green Gables and followed Matthew into the house.
Marilla Cuthbert was Matthew’s practical sister. “Matthew Cuthbert, who’s that?” She ejaculated. “Where is the boy?” “There wasn’t any boy,” said Matthew wretchedly. “There was only her.” Suddenly Anne grasped the full meaning of what had been said.
“You don’t want me!” she cried. “You don’t want me because I’m not a boy! Oh, this is the most tragical thing that ever happened to me! My life is a perfect graveyard of buried hopes.” I like the way she always uses big words to describe what is on her mind.
Marilla asks her what her real name is. “Anne Shirley is such an unromantic name. But if you call me Anne please call me Anne spelled with an e.” Then Anne explains that when you hear a name pronounced you can always see it in your mind. A-n-n looks dreadful, but A-n-n-e looks so much more distinguished. I burst out into laughter when Marilla said, “Well, Anne with an e…..” I can tell she is a very stubborn girl because she insists on being called “Anne spelled with an e.”
Why, Anne was so indignant she picked up Gilbert’s slate and smashed it over his head! I roared with laughter at this. Serves him right, I thought. Anne felt that she should never forgive Gilbert. Even when Gilbert apologized to Anne at the end of class, the girl acted like Gilbert didn’t exist. This incident also shows that Anne is a stubborn and sensitive girl.
Anne felt so ashamed of her red hair that she tried to dye her hair black, but instead her hair turned green! “I thought anything would be better than red hair,” she explained to Marilla, “But green is ten times worse!” Marilla tried to help her wash her hair, but nothing would work. Anne was devastated when she had to get her hair cut short. She promised herself she would never look at her hair until it has grown long again. I thought with her hair short and curly, she looked lovely.
When she returned to school with her hair grown long again, the teacher placed her next to Gilbert Blythe just for being late. But there were many others that were late too, and Anne felt just so unfair! I just wanted to scream at the unfairness of the situation—why didn’t the teacher pick on them? Anne still treated Gilbert as if she were higher and better than him—holding her chin high and ignoring him for the rest of class. It was hilarious how Gilbert tried to get her attention.
Diana Barry was Anne’s bosom friend. She went everywhere with Anne, both of them letting their imagination run wild. One day Diana was invited to tea at Anne’s. Anne accidently gave Diana a wrong beverage, which they both thought was raspberry cordial. But no, Diana had drunk three cups of wine! When Mrs. Barry found her daughter stupidly stumbling back home drunk, she was indignant and wrongly accused Anne of being a disgraceful, wicked girl! Their friendship was severed and Anne was devastated. My heart ached for Anne and Diana.
Anne to the Rescue………………………………
Marilla went out of town one wintery night. Anne and Matthew’s one-sided conversation was interrupted by Diana bursting through the front door, her eyes wide with fear. Her little sister was down with a terribly hot fever, and her parents were out of town. Anne rushed to her house and fed her doses of medicine. The fever began to subside, and Mrs. Barry was so grateful. Anne and Diana could continue their friendship again .
The most memorable conversation :
Diana : I wish I were rich, and I could spend the whole summer at a hotel, eating ice cream and chicken salad.
Anne Shirley : You know something, Diana ? We are rich. We have sixteen years to our credit, and we both have wonderful imaginations. We should be as happy as queens.
The Glory and the Dream
Anne worked hard at her school. Somebody called out: “Three cheers for Miss Shirley, winner of the Avery!” She found herself among a midst of happy, cheering friends. She had worked diligently in class and beat Gilbert to getting a scholarship! I felt so happy for her.
Anne Shirley : Please, Matthew. You need help. We’ve got to get a doctor.
Matthew Cuthbert: I’ve worked hard all my life. I’d rather just drop in the harness. I got old; I never noticed.
Anne Shirley : If I’d been the boy you sent for, I could have spared you in so many ways.
Matthew Cuthbert : I never wanted a boy. I only wanted you from the first day. Don’t ever change. I love my little girl. I’m so proud of my little girl.
This part really touched my heart ……….My eyes were filled with tears
After Matthew’s funeral, Marilla finds Anne crying ………………………..
Anne Shirley : Tears don’t hurt like the ache does.
Anne knew if she accepted the scholarship, Marilla would be left alone almost blind. Marilla almost sold Green Gables, but Anne told her she would give up her scholarship to Redmond. She planned to teach at the local school, but Marilla insisted she should take the scholarship. Anne replied, “I’m sixteen and a half, and I’m just as stubborn as you are.”
After beating early morning rush hour traffic, I finally arrived at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles, California. I had my questions ready for the cast and crew of the movie,Mars Needs Moms.
I was covering a press junket for the movie, which “invades” theatres on Friday, March 11. I couldn’t wait to meet the actors in the movie I had just seen the night before at the Universal CityWalk Cinema in IMAX 3D®!
Members of the press were provided with a delicious “only-served-on-Mars” breakfast right before we were called to the conference room. The delicious “UFO” scrambled eggs, the scrumptious sausages covered with Mars’ red dust (peppers) and the red bacon really satisfied my appetite!
Seth Green (Milo), Simon Wells (director and co-writer), and Robert Zemeckis (producer) walked up to the stage and took their seats in front of a banner showing the surface of Mars. I marveled at how performance capture allowed 36-year-old Green to portray 9-year-old Milo!
I raised my hand to ask a question, and when the woman holding the microphone finally gave me the hint that I would be next, they called “time’s up.” I was a little disappointed, but my questions were answered during the roundtables.
I had thought at a round table, the tables would be round, but the cast and crew actually sat behind a rectangular table to answer questions from the press. Roundtable is a term used for when several reporters are conducting interviews together. It has nothing to do with the shape of the table.
The biggest treat of all was getting one-on-one interviews with the cast and crew! Every actor had his or her own suite. Disney publicists brought press members to each room. I spent about 10 minutes with each member of the cast and crew talking and laughing. I felt that I could really connect to the heart of the movie as we discussed about their characters.
“I think you ask very good questions,” Joan Cusack (Milo’s Mom) replied when I asked her if she looked up to Milo’s Mom’s example of love. “It sounds like you have a very good mom, and you’re really smart, and that’s a really interesting question.”
I was ecstatic because I had spent a lot of time coming up with the questions. My mom was also on cloud nine when I told her Cusack praised her for being such a good mother.
Experience outer space as you travel on a journey with 9-year-old Milo to save his mom in the movie Mars Needs Moms. Directed by Simon Wells, this motion capture animated film is based on the book by cartoonist Berkeley Breathed.”We took the tent poles from Berkeley’s book: the kid who doesn’t appreciate his mom and the moment where mom absolutely proves how much she really and truly loves him,” Wells told the Scholastic News Kids Press Corps at a press event to publicize the movie. “We looked for the theme that connected those two together.”
Milo’s Mom is played by Joan Cusack, who brought her own intuition to the storylines.
“I have a son whose name is Miles,” Cusack explained when asked about how she gets into character. “I’ve had many conversations with my son like Mom has with Milo — especially about broccoli.” That explains why Cusack would often say Miles instead of Milo in the middle of a take!
Another character who added laughs and spiced up the movie is Gribble, played by Dan Fogler.
“Gribble is basically me with the dial turned up on my maniac side,” Fogler said with a laugh. “It was cool to play a character who is 6 feet 7 inches, cause I’m not.”
Yet, along with a hilarious range of physical and dialogue inventions, Fogler brought an amazing emotional depth to the character of Gribble.
“When Dan acted the scene of Gribble revealing his past, he did it so much better than we were expecting,” Wells recalled. “It was one of those moments where the entire crew on set applauded at the end of his take because he made it deeply, emotionally heartbreaking.”
best bud before Milo arrives on Mars is Wingnut (Kevin Cahoon), the leader of the Hairy Tribe Guys who live in underground trash caverns and embody the lost love of Mars.
“As an actor, you’re playing a creature that doesn’t exist on earth and doesn’t speak English,” Cahoon said, describing what it was like to get into Wingnut’s character. “If you think that he looks for bugs in your hair, you just have to take risks and go with that impulse. Wingnut’s sort of like a chimpanzee with ADD.”
So who’s the bad guy behind the cold strict conduct of Mars? The Supervisor with her evil satisfaction, unwavering control, and unpredictable fury is played by Mindy Sterling, who approached the fear-provoking character with a sense of humor.
“Sometimes when you play mean, horrible characters like the Supervisor, you get a sense of fun because that is not who I am, though my son might not think so,” Sterling said with a smile. “I had fun with who she is. She thinks she knows everything, but she really doesn’t.”
All the Martian characters have their own unique look. The movie shows the emotion in the eyes and the facial expressions through the process of mocap, or motion capture.
“The actors wear a helmet with four cameras pointed at them, which takes a little while to get used to,” said Huck Wirtz, the animation supervisor. “At first they were knocking into one another and banging the cameras everywhere. The dots capture their performance. When the animators add the life into the character, you can feel the emotion on the face.”
What’s the secret message in the movie? Cusack, as the Mom, said it all.
“Being a mom is not about being your kid’s friend,” Cusack said. “It’s more selfless than that. Mars Needs Moms really shows that ultimate love. It reinforces how important moms are.”
©Scholastic Inc. First published online at http://www2.scholastic.com/browse/article.jsp?id=3755850