Friday, April 6, 2012

Thomas Kinkade, Dead at 54

Famed painter, Thomas Kinkade, has died tonight at the age of 54.

He had a style that was most commonly recognized for the glowing highlights and pastel colours that seemed to saturate the world around them.

His works were always quickly mass reproduced by his company, and then sold as prints. Driving down the value of each work, but allowing for many to share in them. It's estimated that one in every twenty American homes holds at least one of his works.

His stated goal was to become the "first million seller artist", and for this the art world reviled him, as they saw him as a commercial sell out. But no matter the critics, his fans adored his works.

Multiple of his paintings were used as the settings for movies. Lifetime especially was known for taking one of the buildings he had painted, and then writing a story for it.

Controversial though he may have been. His works definitely touched many.

Review: Tomorrow, When The War Began

Out of Australia, in 2010, a lot of America missed this movie. But it was popular enough there that two sequels are already planned (due out 2012 and 2013), with a TV show being mentioned. Based on books by John Marsden, the basic story is very similar to that of 1984's Red Dawn (the remake of which comes out November 2).

A group of seven teenager's goes off on a camping weekend. When they come back the find everyone is gone, and that their part of Australia has been taken over by unknown invaders. The group continues on as they struggle against themselves and dealing with the new reality, but mostly to survive. Eventually the decision comes to take the fight to the enemy.

One of the most important parts of the movie comes as they're arguing over the importance of finding out who has invaded them. But as one of them points out, it doesn't matter the flag, they still invaded us, and are the enemy.

I was pleasantly surprised by the random red box pick I made. This movie is well done. That and who doesn't love that much Australian accent? Was great seeing a movie that showed patriotism for home against anything. In an age where we have peace and global unity spewed upon us, normally such movies are scifi related or historical. I shall be looking for the sequels, as well as maybe the books.

Remembering: The Rebirth of The Olympics

April 6, 1896 the Olympic Games are brought to modern times. 280 participants from thirteen nations came to Athens, participating in forty-three events.

The games were first recorded in 776 BC, though they likely started at least 500 years before that. They began as part of a festival honouring the Greek gods. Over time as more participants came, the number of events grew as well.

With the rise of Roman power the Olympics faded. In 393 AD, they were outlawed by Emperor Theodosius I, in an attempt to eliminate pagan rituals.

Pierre de Coubertin, a French baron began in 1892 proposing that the Olympics be brought back as a permanent event to take place every for years. In 1894 a body of seventy-nine delegates from nine countries voted unanimously to hold the first games in Athens. The International Olympic Committee was founded and by 1896 had elected Coubertin as President. In 1924, winter games were added and women began taking part.

Now the Olympics have become a competition amongst cities and countries just for who will get to host them. Millions of dollars are invested to improve and build new sporting arenas. Many events have been added, with each Olympics seeming to see more. The 2010 Winter Olympics, held in Vancouver and Whistler, British Columbia, saw eighty-two nations send 2,566 athletes to compete in eighty-six events. The 2008 Summer Olympics, the largest yet, consisted of 302 events participated in by 11,028 athletes, from 204 nations.