Santa Cruz Good Times

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Apr 24th
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Call Down the Thunder.

blog_xrsy_thorsFor the last decade or so the summer movie season has come to be defined by it's crop of super hero flicks. And with the Green Lantern, Captain America, and an X-men prequel all waiting in the wings to administer their own brand of justice for movie-goers in the coming months, 2011 is no exception. This weekend is the official kickoff for nerds around the world as Marvel's Thor finally swings his mighty Mjolnir across movie screens everywhere.

Chris Hemsworth (Kirk's daddy in the Star Trek reboot) stars as the Asgardian legend, cast out from a world of Gods by his pops Odin (Anthony Hopkins) for being a snotty little pain in the you know what. His sentence? To exist on Earth amongst us mere mortals. I know, pretty harsh stuff. Along the way he befriends Natalie Portman and the inevitable hijinks ensue until it's time for our hero to learn a lesson in humility and check his ego in order to defend the world from yada, yada, yada. You've seen more than enough of these movies to know the drill. Still, Marvel deserves some serious credit for the inspired decision to hand directing reigns over to Kenneth Branagh, a guy primarily known for really liking Shakespeare a whole lot. Early reviews are indicating that the movie completely works as smart popcorn entertainment (oxymoron?), with heavy praise being placed upon Hemsworth's performance.

I have to admit that trailers for this movie haven't managed to elicit much more than an indifferent half sigh from me which I'm sure is due to the obvious fact that I've just never been a Marvel guy. What can I say? I grew up walking around face first in the pages of their distinguished competition. So unlike a lot of fanboys that I know out there, I won't be lining up outside any theater wearing a blonde wig while holding a plastic hammer and drenched in sweaty anticipation. Nope, I'll probably end up sitting this one out and catch it on video like I did with Iron Man 2 (which is a lot better than everyone made it out to be). Besides, if for some unfathomable reason I do end up really needing to see Thor onscreen, there's always my copy of Adventures in Babysitting*.

*Yep, that's Vincent D'onofrio!

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Best of Santa Cruz County 2014

The 2014 Santa Cruz County Readers' Poll Come on in, and have a look around. There’s a lot to see—hundreds of winners selected by thousands of GT readers across Santa Cruz County. So if some of this looks familiar, it’s probably because you helped make it happen. But there are always new things to discover, too—you could go to a different winner or runner-up every day in the Food and Drink category alone, and you’d be booked just about until next year’s Best of Santa Cruz County issue comes out.

 

Something Essential Disappears

Lunar and solar eclipses follow one another. Lunar eclipses occur at full moons, and solar eclipses at new moons. Two weeks ago at the full moon we had the blood red moon—a total lunar eclipse (the next one is Oct. 8). On Monday night, April 28 (new moon), as the Sun, Moon and Earth align, a solar eclipse (Sun obscured) occurs. Eclipses signify something irrevocably is changed in our world. The Sun is our essential life force. Monday’s new moon, 9 degrees Taurus, is also an annular solar eclipse when the Moon moves centrally in front of the Sun, yet does not cover the Sun completely. The Sun's outer edges, still visible, form a “ring of fire” around the Moon.

 

Sugar: The New Tobacco?

Proposed bill would require warning labels on sugary drinks Will soda and other saccharine libations soon come with a health warning? They will if it’s up to our state senator, Bill Monning (D-Carmel). On Feb. 27, Monning proposed first-of-its-kind legislation that would require a consumer warning label be placed on sugar-sweetened beverages sold in California. SB 1000, also known as the Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Safety Warning Act, was proposed to provide vital information to consumers about the harmful effects of consuming sugary drinks, such as sodas, sports drinks, energy drinks, and sweetened teas.

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of April 17

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