Don Cherry Steps Down From SportsNet

This is not typically something I would bother to write about. I am not a sports writer, nor a sports buff. But one of the hot topics in Canada right now is Don Cherry being forced to step down from his position on Coach’s Corner because of some xenophobic remarks about how he doesn’t see immigrants wearing poppies.

First off, he could have just generalized this. He absolutely didn’t have to go all, “you people come here…”. He could have just said “I am seeing less people wearing poppies”. That’s the issue, less people wearing poppies. Don’t bring immigration into this. We need to pay respect to ALL veterans, not just the white Canadians. Race has nothing to do with a lack of respect for veterans during Remembrance Day. He also could have just apologized. He could have just said, “I didn’t mean for it to come across as racist, I just want to see more people in our country support our veterans”, and his job would have been saved. But the fact that he REFUSED to stand down, shows intent to be racist/xenophobic. It’s almost 2020, we need to do better; and that includes apologizing when we put our foot in our mouth.

The lack of apology brings me to my next thought. I am seeing a lot of people compare this incident to Justin Trudeau’s “Black Face” Scandal. Now, I am not condoning Justin Trudeau’s actions. He did an awful thing. But this also happened 20 years ago, when people were far more ignorant to the problems behind black face. He has since owned up to his mistake and apologized for it. He has grown. We were absolutely outraged when this happen, don’t act like people weren’t. But there is a difference between a person who made a mistake 20 years ago, a person who will acknowledge their mistake, apologize for it, and strive to be better…and someone who is actively expressing racism in 2019 with no regrets.

I am also seeing a lot of people say things like, “what happened to freedom of speech/expression?”. Don Cherry is absolutely entitled to his opinion. But he works in media and was using his media platform to express these opinions. Which ties back to his employer. It’s one thing to express an opinion on your own private platform but when what you say reflects on your employer, and your opinions may be less than flattering, your employer is going to have a problem with that. As someone who works in media, I get that. If I used my employers platform to spread hate, they’d be pissed. You can say whatever you want when you’re a nobody.

Overall, I wouldn’t say that I am outraged one way or the other. I think that Don Cherry is an 85 year old man who said something ignorant. He could have apologized and we might have been able to move on. I personally think he should have been pulled off air years ago, I found him incredibly difficult to watch.

Let’s just do better, guys. Let’s think about how what we say and do sounds/looks to people of colour. Let’s just care about other people. And let’s wear a poppy to pay respect to veterans.

Update: since publishing this post, Don Cherry has admitted he wishes he had used different language in his statement, but he has stood by what he said and has still not issued an official apology.

I will share a few links to stories in case you don’t know what I’m talking about. I would also like to share a Facebook post from NDP leader, Jagmeet Singh.

Movie Review | I Feel Pretty

I don’t care what anyone says, I love Amy Schumer; except for that time she dressed up as a baby on Ellen, that was weird. So when I first saw the trailer for I Feel Pretty, I was so excited to see Amy in something that clearly had such a positive message and an interesting concept.

I Feel Pretty has gotten a lot of criticism from people claiming that they “fat shame”. But I have a hard time considering it fat shaming whenever every negative thought this character ever has about herself is something every single average women in the world has thought.

Besides the fact that this movie was so relatable, I think a lot of people are also missing the fact that Michelle William’s played this beautiful and glamorous character who also had issues with self doubt and had her own confidence boosted by Renee’s reassurance.

I Feel Pretty is relatable on every single level and for every woman, while still being fun. It’s making you think, “I have absolutely thought that about myself, why?” while also laughing your ass off (I could only wish that was literal) . It makes me want to walk around like I think I am the hottest thing in the room; even though I probably won’t.

 

Movie Review | A Quiet Place

It has been a long time since I saw a horror movie that truly blew me away; and while I initially had a hard time filing A Quiet Place under horror, I was scared so I guess that fits the definition. I was scared for the characters. I was scared to cough in the theatre. It started boring, which made me wonder if it was going to be scary at all. But then it got super exciting, and then it got heartbreaking, and then it was over; it all seemed to happen so quickly.

If this movie doesn’t deserve an Oscar for sound editing, I don’t know what will. Did you see Don’t Breathe? They focused so much on little sounds, like the sound of a heart beating, because the antagonist was blind. A Quiet Place sort of pulled from that same structure. The emphasis on the sounds, because of the lack there of, made it that much more thrilling. And of course, it was about the lengths that a parent would go to to protect their child. Which was the heartbreaking part. The acting was phenomenal, from the entire cast. Emily Blunt was astounding, but I don’t think I have ever seen John Krasinki in a such serious role so seeing him like this was most impressing.

I left this theatre feeling absolutely nauseated, and it wasn’t from the popcorn and milk duds; it was an adrenaline crash. I’m not sure I’ve ever left a movie feeling like that.

The monster was maybe a little too ‘Stranger Things’. I only wish we had been able to see Emily Blunt annihilating them all.

Movie Review | Black Panther

Alright so some quick little thoughts on Black Panther cause y’all know I love my Marvel movies.

Black Panther was phenomenal. Not only was the cast incredibly good looking, but they were all around amazing. It was such a smooth dialect; and of course Marvel never disappoints with the comedic relief. It had a really beautiful message about loyalty and family; I know that N’Jadaka/Erik was the villain, but you feel really sad for him. It was visually stunning with incredible effects and remarkable technology. I was really excited about Kendrick Lamar producing the soundtrack for the film but all around I wouldn’t exactly sale the music was overly present. Like yes, when you’d notice the music it was well chosen but in some movies you can really feel the music, it really makes the scenes; it didn’t feel like the music was overly powerful here but that wasn’t bothersome, it didn’t need to be…the movie can stand on it’s own. Maybe I would feel differently if I watched it again. But I think that what I liked most was that this wasn’t really a superhero movie, it was a movie about warriors fighting for their country and for their people. And it was empowering that many of those warriors were women, and that all of those warriors were black. It was an incredibly powerful message to send into the world right now. Overall, it was an incredible installment into the franchise and I can’t wait to see Black Panther again later this year in Infinity War.

 

#MeToo | Sexual Misconduct Allegations Against Hedley

This week one of the biggest stories in music has been those of sexual misconduct allegations made against Canadian band Hedley. In the wake of these allegations their upcoming performance at the JUNOs was cancelled, they were dropped by their management company and Neon Dreams has decided not to continue as their opening act on the Cageless tour. Shawn Hook has decided to fulfill his contractual obligations and I understand this was a difficult decision to make, no artist wants to disappoint their fans.

Many people may think that this #MeToo movement is getting out of hand; I’ve seen people say that these are “young girls out to ruin lives”. While I am usually someone who believes in “innocent until proven guilty”, the evidence has been overwhelming. No story of sexual harassment should be taken lightly, especially when it is a story that involves young, vulnerable, girls. There is even an investigation being conducted into a young girl who was drugged at a Hedley show.

If you are a girl or woman and you experience sexual assault or sexual harassment do not wait to report it. Proof does not last forever.

As a victim and a broadcaster this has been a tough week but I am incredibly proud of the stations around the country that have decided to pull Hedley from their library; including my own.

Hedley has released their own statement which reads as follows:

“All of us in Hedley respect and applaud the #MeToo movement and the open and honest discussion it has inspired. We believe these conversations are particularly important within the music industry, which does not exactly have an enviable history of treating women with the respect they deserve. We appreciate the bravery of those who have come forward with their own stories, and we realize that all of us, as individuals and as a society, can and must do better when it comes to this issue.

However, if we are to have a meaningful, open and honest discussion, we all have to accept and respect that there are at least two sides to every story. The recent allegations against us posted on social media are simply unsubstantiated and have not been validated. We would hope that people will bear-in-mind the context in which these unsupported accusations have been made before passing judgment on us as individuals or as a band.

We realize the life of a touring band is an unconventional one. While we are all now either married or have entered into committed, long-term relationships, there was a time, in the past, when we engaged in a lifestyle that incorporated certain rock and roll clichés. However, there was always a line that we would never cross.

We realize this conversation is as important to our fans as it is to us, and we never want to distract from these important discussions. To that end, as we move forward, we will be evaluating some of our next steps. Hedley’s music should only ever be a positive force, and our performances and personal appearances should continue to be inclusive and safe experiences that bring nothing but joy and happiness to our fans.”

 

To all of the young women who have spoken up, I applaud and admire your bravery.

And to all of you who have been victims, you are not alone.

And to those of you who may become victims in the future, it is not your fault.

Keep fighting back.

 

Movie Review | The Greatest Showman

There aren’t enough synonyms for phenomenal to describe “The Greatest Showman”. It’s heart warming, heart breaking, funny. It’s absolutely mesmerizing in every way; from the costumes, the music, the affects, the movement, the dancing, the way Zendaya looks swinging through the air. An incredible cast, beautiful music and amazingly choreographed; I mean amazingly. I could watch this movie a thousand times over and never get tired of it. In it’s own words, it’s “a celebration of humanity”. It didn’t drag out for longer than it needed, it never felt slow. Not once did I think, “well, they could have cut that”. It was an absolutely perfect masterpiece in every way. I feel like I will be in absolute awe for days.

What makes you unique is what makes you beautiful; follow your dreams, stay humble, and remember what truly matters.

Review | Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle

It’s been a minute since I did a movie review so I thought I would share my thoughts on one of 2017’s most anticipated movie releases, Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle.

What I liked most about this movie was that they didn’t just try to REMAKE the original Jumanji; it was like a sequel to show the evolution of the game. I also loved that they paid homage to Robin Williams by mentioning Alan Parish’s time stuck in the game.

I thought they did an awesome job with all the little details that really made it seem like they were inside a video game. But it was definitely not the feel good family movie that the original was. They depended more on the comedy, and it was skewed towards an older demographic(the original never would have made penis jokes). There wasn’t as much “heart” but each character still had their little lesson to learn and it definitely had it’s warm moments.

The cast was FANTASTIC! I normally can’t stand Jack Black (with the exception of The Holiday and School Of Rock) but he really did an amazing job of acting like he was a 16 yr old girl stuck in the body of a middle age man without totally over doing it (like he typically does).

Overall, I really enjoyed this movie and would watch it again!

 

Movie Review | Spiderman: Homecoming

I’m not sure why I still do movie reviews but here are my thoughts on Spiderman: Homecoming.

It was awesome. I don’t know anything about the Marvel comics, I don’t know if Spiderman and The Avengers were even part of the same series but tying this Spiderman into the Avengers was a genius idea. I loved having the Avengers characters featured and have Peter look up so much to Iron Man, he wanted to earn his approval so much. I also actually really love that they made him so young because then Peter Parker is really this just young, nerdy kid who has so much to prove. I LIKED that he wasn’t just your friendly neighbourhood Spiderman, but that ultimately in the end he knew that he wasn’t ready to take on the responsibility of being an Avenger. I liked that they gave him his little nerdy sidekick too and I loved the high tech suit because it added so much comic relief.  I am a huge fan of the Marvel movies because they add in the extra comical aspect to the films and this one was probably one of the funniest ones; so many hilarious one liners and just the smallest details making this movie even more funny. It also had a really great twist about the bad guy. I also really liked the way MJ was introduced to build up to her future with Peter Parker. I liked the time line for the film, how they formatted it to be 8 years ago Avengers 2 and just after Captain America: Civil War. I do think that it would be nice to have gotten a bit of a origin story but I wouldn’t want that to take up so much of the film as the Toby McGuire films did. It was almost 2 1/2 long; it didn’t really feel long because it was pretty eventful, but then near the end it started to feel like “okay you can be over now” which may have been because it was late, I was tired and I had to pee.  The only thing I wasn’t loving was that they called it “Homecoming” just because he goes to the homecoming dance, definitely think there’s a better name for it. Overall, I think this is by far the best Spiderman and I can’t wait for more!

 

Movie Review | Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales

It’s been a few days since I’ve seen the movie so I’m less pumped about it now but I haven’t had the time to write the review, I’ll try not to forget anything.

So I want to start by touching on whether or not this will be the last movie in the franchise. Pirates originally started out as a planned trilogy, they released the third movie and said that was it. But then they did a fourth! And then a FIFTH. Now I have heard from a few sources that they didn’t plan on going any further with the franchise and here is the evidence that that is true:

All of the previous movies ended with Jack with a new map, ready to find a new treasure; this one did not, it was open ended. They always had a post credit scene to set up another movie. This installment ended with Will in bed awaking from a dream that Davy Jones entered his bedroom and then shows barnacles on the floor, which I don’t think was about setting up another film but the barnacles on the floor had just fallen off Will because his curse was broken. I also really felt like all the major characters got their closure and ended up exactly where they were meant to be, and they kind of all got to end the series as heroes instead of just pirates.

I really love this franchise because they were dark and creepy, dabbling in the supernatural, while still having the most amazing and cleverly written comedic relief. This movie was definitely the darkest of the franchise. It was also the most exciting, because I knew this was most likely the last one I was on the edge of my seat wondering if all of the characters would make it out alive. Always a fantastic cast; I really loved that they had Paul McCartney make an appearance as Uncle Jack since Jack’s dad was played by Keith Richards. The effects are always amazing and I really think that’s kind of part of what made this installment so dark; the effects to portray the dead were just incredibly well down and CGI young Jack Sparrow was so incredible. It was cool to see a bit of how Jack came to be a captain and have everything come full circle for him. The movie starts out with Jack kind of washed up and pathetic and then he snaps out of it. I always really loved how they managed to do the “everything that can go wrong will go wrong but Jack will still pull it off” sort of schemes; they’re incredibly cleverly thought out and well planned. I definitely feel like this was the best film in the franchise. I know I’m forgetting a ton of thoughts I had after initially watching it but it was just so amazing! Share your thoughts below, let’s chat!

REVIEW: Beauty and the Beast (2017)

Okay so I missed the part of the movie between when Belle is introduced and Maurice goes into the words because my boyfriend was in the line for snacks and required my assistance BUT my overall opinion on the live action remake of Beauty and the Beast was that it was absolute PERFECTION.

Every single little detail was amazing, all the special effects were fantastic. They thought of literally everything! They stuck pretty close to the original story line with a few little twists. They added in more elaborate back stories for both Belle and The Beast which was amazing. I thought how they formatted the introduction to the story was really cool, having the narrator tell the story and the characters not actually speaking their lines. Every single character was absolutely amazing; every personality, every actor PHENOMENAL. Obviously Belle has always been the most strong headed and independent “Disney Princess” and Emma Watson was an amazing choice for casting because she brought this perfect feminism to the character. Every musical number was chilling, actual goosebumps. It had quite a bit of pretty modern language but it didn’t bother me at all, I absolutely loved the humor as well. I felt like I was on the verge of tears the entire time because it was just. so. perfect.

The only thing, Belle had her horse the whole time so I spent a little time wondering how Maurice stumbled back to the village without the wolves attacking. At least in the animation the Beast had the decency to send him back with the enchanted carriage!