Sunday, July 28, 2013

Racial Equality Under The Law: A Myth? Trayvon and Marissa



Trayvon Martin's case is still an open matter; not just because he died so senselessly but also the reason why his killer shot him in the first place and why he was found not guilty instead of imprisoned. It simply doesn't make sense to me and, I'm confident, a lot of people who feel that Zimmerman should be punished.
 Here was a boy returning from an errand and a supposedly well meaning neighourhood watch volunteer-Zimmerman- trailed him why... the boy's hoodie and (whether he wants to deny it or not), the colour of his skin. Trayvon was not armed and obviously was offended when Zimmerman approached him thinking he was a criminal and before we could catch our breath, Trayvon was shot in a so called  act of self defense; not an accident, so called self defense. Zimmerman's lawyers seem to blame Trayvon than this killer, for what exactly, when once again, I emphasize, he was not armed? I don't take sides with anybody nor judge anybody because of their race- I'm all for universal brotherhood. And I honestly thought that after all these years, America would treat its citizens equally regardless of race; yet some thought that Trayvon was at fault and deserved what he got. I read in Huffington Post about a  rascist- a 17 year old waitress- who actually posted on Facebook this terrible sentence: "Thank God For the Bullet That Killed Trayvon Martin". As a result she was sacked. (Unless she repents, she will answer to God in the Hereafter and May she burn in hell)
The all-female jury; another thing I did not understand at all- were they no mothers among them for God's sake? How would they feel if their own children were profiled because of their skin and manner of dressing and then killed? One juror fought for Trayvon to receive justice but being the only one she was in the minority and as such, Zimmerman went free. Why did they decide to say NOT GUILTY when Zimmerman had obviously killed Trayvon for no damned reason? Lack of evidence or rather lack of witnesses? So many questions that are yet to be answered. 
Supporters of Zimmerman no doubt feel that the African American citizens and the Africans round the globe shouting for this man's punishment are playing the race card. No... we are NOT playing the race card nor a persecution complex because a travesty of justice like this occurred some time back.
 Last year a black woman, practicing the same Florida law of ' Stand Your Ground' that protected Zimmerman, fired warning shots while fleeing her abusive husband, an attempt to scare him. Warning shots that was in no way aimed at him yet... yet!... she was sentenced to 20 years in prison! How that that possibly sound fair when she did not kill anybody and did the judge happen to remember she was trying to escape domestic abuse? My God!
If this is a racial issue, the law that allowed Zimmerman to go free forced the African American populace and other supporters  to make it a  racial issue because honestly- the verdict was so stupid and biased. Marissa Alexander's 'Stand Your Ground' defense was thrown out and she is to spend 20 years in prison while Zimmerman is grinning like a fool and free as a bird after killing Trayvon. If that is not racial discrimination; I don't know what it is!
I am sad, angry and very disillusioned. I know there is still some level of racism in America but I did not know it extended to such unfairness in justice. America is a country I hope to live in; but with this; all I can think about is how people with my skin have to be careful of what they say, do or go in order to avoid problems with the law or racists who are still bent on judging us because of the colour of our skin. Thank God for those who aren't like that; those who marched and advocated for racial equality. Trayon and Marissa's unjust justice is simply too outrageous to be ignored like that and the fight for them goes on.

Friday, July 26, 2013

I SAY NO DEAL!



First off, what sort of man like this inhuman creature would keep helpless women in his cellar for his own perverse and sadistic pleasures? The incredible story itself and Ariel Castro's face on CNN made my skin crawl and I felt ill at the thought of the long ordeal those women faced until they finally made that fateful desperate attempt at freedom. He raped and  tortured them continuously  and his fourth victim  did not even get out alive. Yet, he pleaded 'Not Guilty'.  He deserves all the punishments that can be listed out and then some! With the terrible things he did, how on earth, according to what I found out, that he is to be offered a plea bargain and apparently if he accepts, he will dodge the death penalty  A plea bargain, after everything he did to those women? 
THEY CAN'T BE SERIOUS! were the words that came out my mouth after hearing this. Why give this evil man an option at all;  besides the physical trauma he inflicted on his victims, what about the emotional trauma they suffered, as well their distraught families? No, no, no... I don't agree with this idea. It's almost like the case of that rapist in Morocco some time back who was given the option of marrying his 16 year old victim or going to jail. And what happened... that poor girl committed suicide!
This is not about about the death penalty; this is about Castro being given an option at all. He deserves no options at all- he is an animal; a filthy, twisted creature who deserves to rot in hell.
I'm all for the 'Innocent Until Proven Guilty' procedure but his lawyers can talk all they want- this man is glaringly guilty and should get whats coming to him. Plea Bargain indeed!
With this plea, he has been sentenced to life imprisonment without parole instead of the death sentence. At least he has been punished and his victims can now breathe easy and thank God for His deliverance.

First Sight of... (contd.)

Right... back to the post I started a few days ago; about my first glimpse of famous actors and actresses. It may seem uninteresting to some but I just have to share this!




Even though the world first began noticing him in STAR WARS; my first Harrison Ford film was Indiana Jones & The Temple of Doom and I can watch this movie over and over!









::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::




Ha! I don't even have to ponder on my first Sandra Bullock/Keanu Reeves film; who on earth can ever forget SPEED???















::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



My first Adam Sandler film (and my favorite to date) HAPPY GILMORE, full of laughs and fun, including a very annoying villain and his sidekick.









:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::






Not Pretty Woman or  An Officer & A Gentleman; My first Richard Gere movie AND Kim Basinger was NO MERCY and all because I left the VCR recording timer on! (psst For first timers, steamy love scene where Richard still has his clothes on)














::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::


For Harry Potter fans who don't know it; it would be a shock to know that Alan Rickman who played Severus Snape was the gang leader of 'terrorists' Hans Gruber who was later thrown off a very tall building in DIE HARD. My first glimpse of him was of a criminal with a German accent, totally surprised to later find out he is actually English.








My first Samuel L. Jackson movie was the third in the Die Hard franchise; DIE HARD WITH A VENGEANCE. Not my favorite of all of them but superb acting by him and Bruce Willis.






::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



I honestly wish I could say that Rocky was my first Stallone movie but it was actually Rambo: First Blood II. my Dad borrowed from a friend to Mum's dismay since it was so violent. As kids who were already used to James Bond we were ready for anything but the violence did shock us.





:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::


Oooh... shame on me to admit this but Clint Eastwood was an unknown to me until I watched PINK CADILLAC. And considering the great movies he has been in like THE GOOD THE BAD & THE UGLY, this is not a first time Clint Eastwood film of mine I'm proud to share.














:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::





Jon Voight (Angelina Jolie's papa) appeared before me for the first time in THE CHAMP. It was also my first look at Ricky Shroder (his debut)  and goodness, for such a young actor; his performance really stunned me, especially the memorable part when he cried over his dead father's body, begging him to wake up. I cried myself.








  ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::;
                  

My first Daniel Craig film was LARA CROFT: TOMB RAIDER. Since I knew he was English, I was confused at first when I heard him speak in an American accent but since American Angelina spoke with an English accent, I was like... oh, it's for his role.




::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



Long before I saw him in MAN OF STEEL as Superman, my first Henry Cavill film was THE COUNT OF MONTE CRISTO  (his debut) where he played Albert Mondengo. Funny back then, I paid more attention to the actor who played Edmond Dantes (Jim Caviezel)


::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::


My first Kevin Costner film was THE BODYGUARD and my favorite part was his farewell kiss with Whitney Huston.*sigh*











:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::





My first Jim Carrey AND Cameron Diaz' film (her debut) THE MASK!!! There's no part of the movie that I didn't laugh at; his overwhelming courting at the park, the police emptying his pockets and the memorable dance with Cameron at the club.








::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::






My first Joseph Fiennes (brother of Ralph Fiennes) & Gwyneth Paltrow film-and I'm so proud to say so- is SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE! Another movie I can watch all over again. I knew Elizabeth I (Judi Dench) would set a good example by not allowing a divorce between Viola & Lord Wessex but it made me sad all the same she and Will weren't free to marry in the end.


:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



My first Julia Roberts film... what else would it be but PRETTY WOMAN? Beautiful story, equally beautiful soundtrack (Roy Orbison's Pretty Woman, Roxette's It Must Have Been Love)
















:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::




Another admission I'm ashamed of; my  first Sir Anthony Hopkins' film was THE MASK OF ZORRO; I was yet to see SILENCE OF THE LAMBS and his earlier works back then.















:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Long before I saw him as 007 in The Living Daylights and License to Kill; my first glimpse of Timothy Dalton was as Edward Rochester in JANE EYRE. Brilliant and super hot  actor even though Edward Rochester was described as ugly in the book!
















First Jamie Foxx glimpse; THE JAMIE FOXX show and I began to really enjoy it after his character and Fancy (Grace Beauvais) finally hooked up. Most of the time before that I found him annoying.














My first sight of Will Smith was the unforgettable and hilarious THE FRESH PRINCE OF BEL-AIR after which I found out he was a rapper as well.















No, not SET IT OFF , my first introduction to Will Smith's wife Jada Pinkett was in THE NUTTY PROFESSOR and I really loved her in the role of a rookie professor.








:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::


My first Robin Williams film was POPEYE (his debut) and I liked the film, box office failure or not; it was rather entertaining









:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

 
Saw him much later on in Sex & The City, Desperate Housewives and Twin Peaks but my first peek at Kyle Maclachlan was the 1987 movie THE HIDDEN where he played a secretive & somewhat clueless FBI agent who turned out to be an alien on the hunt for an alien serial killer who goes from one human host to another.                                           
                                                                                                    



::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



My first Steve Martin film was PENNIES FROM HEAVEN. I was rather confused with the story so I had to rewatch. Not a movie I want to watch again after those two times however.















Wednesday, July 24, 2013

'... And Justice For All' Where is Trayvon's? (continued)


I have  relatives in the United States, including a young cousin studying in Boston and I would hate if any of them and many more African Americans suffer the terrible injustice and pain Trayvon Martin and his family are currently suffering after  his killer- after using the excuse of self defense- acquitted of his murder.As  President Obama said;  they are in a democratic country; governed by laws. But after the stunning  verdict, I thought about Trayvon and his family over and over again and I thought; 'WHERE is Trayvon's justice if the words '...And Justice For All' is true?
If every citizen- black, white, hispanic- is truly equal in America today; then Trayvon Martin and his family should have justice. The man who deprived a family of their son because of so-called 'self defense' committed a crime; not a shooting. And if every African American would be suspected of being a criminal because of a hoodie and race; then we are living in a very sad world where we are STILL being judged by the colour of our skin. Thankfully, not all people succumb to the ugliness of racism. My late  father was a student in England back in the 60s and even though he faced racism from some people, there were many Caucasians who treated him like a friend and made him feel at home and I have made many friends on Twitter who have treated me with nothing but kindness and sincere friendliness since I joined that social network. 
Trayvon Martin's death is as sad as Damilola Taylor's- a boy much younger than him who was stabbed to death  with a broken glass by some teenagers in England years ago and he was his Nigerian parents' only son.
Racial profiling is as ugly as racial discrimination and it has ended a young boy's life and Zimmerman's acquittal is a travesty of justice. It cannot be borne and it won't be borne. With this unjust acquittal, another George Zimmerman can easily shoot  another African American teenager and then say that it was self defense after thinking... no... assuming  the person in question was a criminal.
I really  hope that the efforts of the NAACP to have this man charged with civil rights violation will yield positive results. If he is still able to wiggle his way out the charge; he should keep in mind that The Day of Judgement, where he will be judged by God for his crime; will inevitably come.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

First Sight of...

Hollywood actors/actresses had their beginnings before they reached the high status they enjoy today. Below  are the movies where I first saw or ever heard of a particular actor or actress. A few are movies where some made their debut, others long afterwards.




   


My first Ralph Fiennes film:  THE ENGLISH PATIENT. Beautiful yet sad film and I'm still trying to forget Kristin Scott Thomas' full frontal nude scene. Mind, I'm not a prude; I just found it weird.



:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::






My first Kevin Kline film: I LOVE YOU TO DEATH (1990)
Hilarious movie about a man who cheated on his wife and she plots to get her revenge since as a strong Catholic she cannot divorce him. How is killing him any  better?














:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::





My first Denzel Washington film:  THE PELICAN BRIEF(1993) Later read the book and got pissed off he didn't get to kiss  Julia Roberts.
















::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::




My first Brad Pitt film: INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE (1994) What can I say about it except wondering why vampires have to be so attractive? (Brad Pitt, Tom Cruise, Antonio Banderas)


















::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::




My first Audrey Hepburn film:  MY FAIR LADY (1964) Eliza finally mastering cultured way of speaking made my day though I found Professor Higgins (Rex Harrison) VERY annoying the whole time.

















::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



My first Antonio Banderas film: DESPERADO (1995)My first thought of  Tony on seeing him... sexy YET scary.





















:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::





My first Joe Mantegna film: BABY'S DAY OUT (1994) Just how a baby was able to outwit 3 adult men is what I'm still laughing over.








 ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::




 My first Eddie Murphy film: THE GOLDEN CHILD (1986) 

It  was hard viewing a chap who made wisecracks half the time as a hero but Eddie Murphy managed it. Good movie.
















:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::





My first Tom Cruise film: COCKTAIL (1988)Tom Cruise going up that penthouse to propose to the love of his life  and she willingly defying her rich snobbish father brought tears.









::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::






My first Wesley Snipes film: PASSENGER 57 (1992) Black 'Bruce Lee' was what I called him that time; and brilliant acting.















::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::





My first Cuba Gooding Jr. film- THE TUSKEGEE AIRMEN (1995) My favorite part: When two of the pilots landed in the middle of a field where a prison crew was working and the raw  pride on the African American convicts' faces on seeing two of their own were actual pilots.









::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::





My first Jodie Foster film: THE ACCUSED(1988)  though the first time I ever heard her name was through reading the plot summary of NELL. I hated the rape scene, hence not a movie I was to see again unless I keep my eyes closed and the volume down in that part.
 





::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::




My first Humphrey Bogart/Katherine Hepburn film: THE AFRICAN QUEEN(1951) A pretty much mismatched couple who first quarrel then fell in love is a movie to watch!













::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::




My first Russel Crowe film: A BEAUTIFUL MIND(2001), first I heard of him was when reading plot summary of VIRTUOSITY. It was a shock to see Nash was actually hallucinating but his struggle to overcome it was very moving.  










::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::





Long before he starred in DIE HARD, I grew up watching Bruce Willis and his co-star Cybill Shepherd in the ABC series MOONLIGHTING(1985-89) , one of my favorite shows back in the day.Friends, Enemies, Partners, Lovers... who won't be addicted to David and Maddie?












::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



My first Al Pacino film: SCARFACE(1983) Full of swearing and violence and the concept of those who live by the sword with die by the sword was glaringly shown.













::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::





My first Claire Danes film: LITTLE WOMEN(1994)- her debut

Next to JANE EYRE, I love this story very much.








::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::




My first sight of A.J Cook years before her current show, CRIMINAL MINDS was in FINAL DESTINATION II(2003) Death is inevitable hence cannot be cheated but it is a very scary movie to watch if you are the nervous type.










:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



My first Leonardo Dicaprio film: ROMEO + JULIET(1996); first time of hearing of him was while reading plot summary of THE BASKETBALL DIARIES. Modern setting of the Bard's play and equally tragic ending.








::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



My first Morgan Freeman film: LEAN ON ME(1989) 
No surprise that the stern but well meaning principal was once a drill sergeant; no wonder he kept everyone under their toes!








:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



My first Jean Claude Van Damme film: NO RETREAT; NO SURRENDER(1986) Scary was my description of him but he was the real reason why we watched the whole film, not because of the lead actor, Kurt Mckinney.










:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



My first Jackie Chan film: DRAGONS FOREVER. Funny as hell is all I can say!








::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::




My first Angelina Jolie film: GIA. A true life story about a tortured soul, which makes it very sad. 








:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



My first Halle Berry film: STRICTLY BUSINESS. She was the reason we kept on until the end and we had no regrets! 










:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



My first Tom Hanks film: FORREST GUMP. A simple man who saw, experienced and achieved a lot is moving and inspirational.







::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::










My first Drew Barrymore film: THE WEDDING SINGER; where she played a sweet natured waitress . 






TO BE CONTINUED...