Aviously

Because, aviously…

Two hardcore board-gamers meet at a bar trivia night, and over time fall in love and got married.

Now Max (Jason Bateman) and Annie (Rachel McAdams) host game nights at their house, inviting over some of their friends: Kevin (Lamorne Morris, New Girl) and Michelle (Kylie Bunbury); Ryan (Billy Magnussen) and an array of blond dates; and not their next door neighbor Gary (Jesse Plemons).

Now Max’s super successful brother Brooks (Kyle Chandler, Bloodline) is in town, and he’s the Mark Wahlberg to Max’s Donnie, and he wants to host Game Night, with a special twist: A murder mystery.

Ryan brings along Sarah (Sharon Hogan, Catastrophe), to add to our usual cast of characters, and they set off on an epic adventure, as this murder mystery seems all too real.

With gunshots and fights, Risk and Charades, plus bad guys named “The Bulgarian” (Michael C. Hall) and “Marlon Freeman” (Danny Huston), this movie wasn’t anything like I expected (although maybe I should’ve watched the trailer first?) and was very enjoyable, getting and 8 out of 10.

The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass is a great place to learn the history of the game, and all the players that turned it into the game it is today.

This three-story building has a different focus on each level, as you start from the top floor and work your way down:

  • Third Floor: Take a lap around as you follow the history of the game from the beginning until today, as the ceiling has the pictures of all the Hall of Famers, and there is an assortment of memorabilia, from rings to basketballs, and keys to the city.
  • Second Floor: Jerseys, sneakers, basketballs, and trophies. From every team and every era. Sections on the NBA and MAAC, and areas devoted to The Media and Coaches. This also starts the parts that are great for kids. Import yourself into NBA Jam, practice your jumps and see how high you can grab a rebound…see if you can palm a basketball or just shoot arcade-style hoops. And the really cool part? Try your hand at being a member of the media. Sit behind the “Sports desk” and give the highlights from the game, or slide into the radio booth and give your own take on some of the most famous calls in basketball history.
  • First Floor: Center Court, a rack of basketballs and an open court to shoot around on. Along one wall are all the different styles of hoops thru the years, so you can try your luck on the old-fashioned literal basket. There’s also a row of hoops, at different heights, to see how high you are able to dunk.

What’s that? Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks want to give you free drinks for your birthday? Who would say no to that?

But it’s not just them that want to give you free stuff, it’s tens of companies, and there’s one company that will put it all together and remind you who to take advantage of to get these deals.

The company is called Huledet, which is Hebrew for “birth”, and by signing up on Huledet.com you’ll get an email on the first of your special month, with a list of online offers, and some local ones to cash in on.

  • Free magazine subscriptions
  • Free Beef Jerky
  • Discounts to Basic Outfitters, Fanchest, Grow & Behold
  • Deals 16 Handles / Burger Bistro / New York Comedy Club / Peapod
  • Free slice of pizza at Bravo Pizza

Not every deal will be good for everyone, but Happy Birthday regardless!!

The fifth museum at the Springfield Museums is the Dr. Seuss Museum, and it may be the centerpiece of it all, as they all surround the National Memorial Sculpture Garden.
In case you missed them, the first four were the Science Museum, the Springfield History Museum, the George Walter Vincent Smith Art Museum, and the Michele and Donald D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts.

Let’s split this into two parts, the Museum and the Garden.


Dr. Seuss Museum

This museum is great for kids and super cool for adults.

The ground floor is meant for kids, as they have characters from all sorts of Seuss books, from Horton to The Cat in the Hat, and Yertle the Turtle to Things 1 & 2.

When you head upstairs you get to experience the life of Theodor Seuss Geisel. They have his study and desk, as well as sketches that he made, and a family tree. Other things include his stuffed animal, which he kept with him his whole life, and his Hollywood Walk of Fame Star.
They also have notes and cards that he sent to relatives for birthdays and other occasions.

This is a fun place to relive your youth and discover new Seussian adventures, as I did with the book “You’re Only Old Once”, which turned out to be an adult book for those visiting the Doctors and popping pills.


Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden

In the middle of this grouping of museums is a nice lawn, dotted with sculptures of all sizes to commemorate Dr. Seuss. A tall Yertle statue to a tiny little Lorax are the side notes to the two larger pieces.

Horton Court includes Horton and a bunch of other smaller creatures, all next to “The Storyteller”, which has Dr. Seuss and The Cat in the Hat sitting there writing a book, and a giant copy of “Oh The Places You’ll Go”.

Rachel (Kristen Bell) is a very busy woman, so much so that her phone is always on hand, even during her wedding ceremony to Owen (Jon Foster), which proves to be too much for him, and they split up at the alter.

The next day she gets black-out drunk while reconnecting with her long unseen father Harry (Kelsey Grammer), and before she knows it she’s waking up on her honeymoon cruise with him.

On board, while trying to stay away from her father, who suddenly seems to care and be overbearing, she meets Jeff (Seth Rogen), a single guy who’s getting over a divorce.

She also spends some quality time getting to know her dad, from honeymoon questions to hanging out at a watering hole, and singing karaoke to hearing endless stories about someone named Gabe.

Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift, which is why we call it the present.

Other great cast members include her boss (Brett Gelman, Love), and the other couples on board, and help make this movie fun, funny, and enjoyable, as it gets an 8.5 out of 10.

We all know I love my Marvel shows, and I’ll watch almost all of them, and it’s not just the ones that are exclusive to Netflix.

I’ve given shows like Legion (on FX — couldn’t make it out of Season 1) and Inhumans (ABC — which turned into a pretty “Meh” mini-series) a shot, and have been hooked onto the movie-like episodes of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Earlier this year Hulu rolled out The Runaways, and last night Freeform/ABC Family wrapped up Season 1 of Cloak & Dagger, with an announcement already happening of a Season 2.

Cloak & Dagger follows the stories of Ty (Aubrey Joseph) and Tandy (Olivia Holt), who both suffered the deaths of family members on the same night, triggered by an explosion at sea, which ties their lives together in strange ways.

As they grow older, the two discover they have powers, in the form of a cloak and dagger, and when they use them, they are tied together in ways they don’t always like.

This show is super underrated and insanely good. The story is strong and intriguing, and a really fun watch, and if someone has any interest in Marvel, they would love this show.

The second of the two art museums and fourth of the Springfield Museums is the Michele and Donald D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts.
This follows the Science Museum, Springfield History Museum, and the George Walter Vincent Smith Art Museum.

This museum focuses on fine arts and ceramics, featuring beautiful drawings, ceramics, and busts.

Galleries at this museum include the “Dutch and Flemish Gallery”, “19th Century French Gallery”, and the “Blake Court” (seen below) that features front and center “one of the country’s most celebrated works in American art, The Historical Monument of the American Republic by Erastus Salisbury Field”.

There is also a “Modern and Contemporary Gallery” to help round things out.

In typical Jenji Kohan fashion (See: Weeds) the Season 6 storyline has gone straight up, much better than last season. Now don’t get me wrong, the past few seasons have had fantastic stories, but I think this year has pushed it to a new level, with a wide range of stories, a smaller amount of flashbacks (albeit very solid ones), and a lot of timely and relevant plotlines, without getting super political.

After the siege and hostage situation of Season 5, resulting in a riot and the killing of a guard, the inmates have been moved to Max, although not all to the same location, and with this comes new guards and inmates to get a feel of.
And while a large portion of our crew has moved into the same prison, they are in different cell blocks and different colors, as they are slowly getting questioned by the FBI for their roles in the incidents, and while some are okay with their plea deals, others are going to fight it tooth and nail.

I remember dandelion, but things have changed. I don’t have to trust people anymore. And even though I still love you, I will not let you kill me to take my spot.

It’s not just the prisoners who need to get over what happened, as the guards are slowly going back to work too, all with different emotions and some with PTSD. The guards also have a little side bet going on, in the form of “fantasy inmates”, with a draft and all.

Some things are not forgivable.

Among the new inmates are a bunch of new and exciting characters. I’ve heard some hate on Badison (Amanda Fuller), but I enjoy her attitude and spunk to try and be a good sidekick. But it’s Carol (Henny Russell) and Barb (Mackenzie Phillips) that take the cake…they are sisters and mortal enemies, split into two different cell blocks, each leading theirs against the other, but ultimately just out for a vendetta against Frieda (Dale Soules).

Hey rabbi. It’s your girl Tova. You know, the big black girl from prison.

Doggett (Taryn Manning) is on an outing with her guard boyfriend, and Crazy Eyes (Uzo Aduba) has fully evolved into her character, as her chemicals remain unbalanced.

It’s what the Jews call a shiver…so you don’t get cold.

But it’s our main character, stepping back from trying to do too much, that has one of the funnier scenes of the year as Chapman (Taylor Schilling) and Alex (Laura Prepon) are reunited.

Yet through it all, it’s one of the more enjoyable characters that has moved into the spotlight, as Nicky (Natasha Lyonne) has extended her role to a Piper level, and it’s really entertaining…especially when they go back to her Bat Mitzvah, to help see what formed her into who she is today.

Previous years have all gotten a 9 (Season 3, Season 4, Season 5), but this one I feel is just a step ahead and gets a 9.5 out of 10.

The first of two art museums that I’ll look at in the Springfield Museums, is the George Walter Vincent Smith Art Museum.
If you missed the first two, check out the Science and History Museums!

This museum houses the collection of George Walter Vincent Smith and his wife Belle were large collectors of art and items, and the exhibits here show their vast collection.
The family offered the collection to Springfield, on condition that they build a house for it, and it has been opened since 1895.

Some exhibits include:

  • Italian sculptures, Tiffany stained glass windows, American paintings salon
  • Japenese Arms & Armor – They had a large collection of arms from around the world, but their Japenese collection is the largest.
  • Art of the Islamic World – Some really great rugs with nomadic weaves are on display here
  • Kids Design Glass – This exhibit is really cool. It lets kids, under the age of 12, visiting in the summer months draw their own designs, and the winners’ designs get turned into glass sculptures!

I’ve seen the movies you’ve made. You never had any pride. Why start now?

Before it even starts, the Comedy Central Roast of Bruce Willis gives him a kick straight where it counts. And while most of it is about making fun of his age, which is an old joke…they never won’t be funny.

Comedy Central always does a great job with these, and this one is no different, as Bruce Willis is a ready and willing target and most of the dais is funny. Here’s a rundown of the night’s cast:

  • Roastmaster Joseph Gordon Levitt – He hit the mark on some, but missed on others, doing well as the host — B+
  • Nikki Glaser – The Comedy Central Radio host kicks things off with her typical comedic style, which can be an acquired taste — B
  • Kevin Pollak – The longtime funnyman pulls out his Christopher Walken impression, mixed into his great one-liners — A-
  • Cybill Shepherd – She is one of the great understatements of this roast — B+
  • Lil Rel – One of two “brothers” on the list, and the first to mention Yippee Ki Yay, he couldn’t wait to Get Out on stage — B
  • Edward Norton – Maybe the greatest actor on stage, in the longest set of the night, breaks down Bruce’s career in the best ways possible — A
  • Martha Stewart – Comedy legend, and a woman toughened by her time in jail, she gets better each time in front of a podium — B+
  • Dom Irrera – An actual legendary comedian, Dom makes his presence felt, with laughter from start to finish — A
  • Dennis Rodman – The worm has managed to get onto the stage, and that may have been the biggest mistake of the night, as his humor is just flat — C+
  • Demi Moore – The ex makes an appearance, ribbing on his failures — B
  • Jeff Ross – The Roastmaster General, and the one thing holding these roasts together (because he thinks a roast is a type of food), but he’s always funny — A-
  • Bruce Willis – When the man of the hour gets on stage, he doesn’t let down, topping the night off right — A

Here are some of the lines I enjoyed more from it:

“Let’s see Bruce Willis in action, because no one wants to see him in comedy.” – Joseph Gordon Levitt

“Bruce was at Ashton’s wedding, with Demi. His gift was a toaster and 90 million dollars.” – Joseph Gordon Levitt

“It’s odd to see Dennis Rodman here. If you know Bruce…he’s not fond of the blacks.” – Kevin Pollak

“I had the honor of playing Martha Stewart in two different movies. But the only one to truly capture Martha, was the FBI.” – Cybill Shepherd

“I just look at our marriage like the Sixth Sense. You were dead the whole time.” – Demi Moore

“You look like Sir Patrick Stewart…if he operated a ferris wheel.” – Jeff Ross

“Die Hard is not a Christmas movie. It’s a Bruce Willis movie.” – Bruce Willis

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