Sunday, May 01, 2016

Tip#952: Celebrate Your Inner Geek - Keanu

I am so happy and grateful we live in a time that celebrates being a geek! Today anyone can celebrate their love for Harry Potter, Star Trek, etc. at whatever age you are. There is even a whole global culture of fans dressing in elaborate costumes of their favourite fantasy/Sci Fi characters called Cosplay. Just check out #cosplay on Instagram and you will see!

There are many definitions of this geek term but the best I found was on Wikipedia: The word geek is a slang term originally used to describe eccentric or non-mainstream people; in current use, the word typically connotes an expert or enthusiast or a person obsessed with a hobby or intellectual pursuit, with a general pejorative meaning of a "peculiar person, especially one who is perceived to be overly intellectual, unfashionable, or socially awkward". 


As I’ve written before I loved the original Star Trek TV series but it wasn’t “cool” while I was in junior high school in the 70’s. Today it is “cool” to be a nerd and to love almost any topic that was once considered an outcast/outsider type theme. Many actors, such as Simon Pegg, Tina Fey, Wil Wheaton and Jennifer Lawrence, are self-proclaimed geeks as well as writer/director Joss Whedon who helped make the Marvel Cinematic Universe a massive, global success! Read about: Tina Fey and Conan O'Brien geeking off!


Action star Vin Diesel surprised the media when he shared his gamer passion for Dungeons and Dragons since the 70’s. He said, “We were all drawn to the game because it allowed us to become these characters. Playing D & D was a training ground for our imaginations and an opportunity to explore our own identities.”
See: Video clip of Vin Diesel “geeking out” for D&D
See: Video of Vin Diesel playing D&D on Geek & Sundry

I'm with Toronto Film Critic, Richard Crouse at the Keanu advance screening

I recently attended an advance screening of the comedy Keanu written and starring comedy duo Key and Peele. They are self-proclaimed movie geeks in real-life and they constantly demonstrate this in their Comedy Network series. One hilarious example is their segments about their passion for Batman and Liam Neeson. See: Key & Peele Batman clip 

At the advance screening I sat near my fellow movie reviewer pal, Toronto Film Critic Richard Crouse who, of course, shares a passion for films. During the screening there were many movie references and quotes that got laughs from the audience. The loudest laughs though came from Richard and I especially when some of the film references were obscure! That’s when I felt an inner geek bonding with Richard and the actors/writers Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele. Even the title of this comedy is meant to invoke a connection to a major movie star!

Keanu movie posters parodies other popular films!

Keanu (2016)

The action comedy film, Keanu, is about two friends Rell (Jordan Peele) and his cousin Clarence (Keegan-Michael Key) retrieving Rell’s new found kitten named Keanu stolen from his home by drug dealer named Cheddar (Method Man). Despite the film’s flaws it has some hilarious moments, amazing comic timing by the film’s leads and hugely adorable scenes every time the kitten is on screen! See: movie trailer


The film is also a spoof and parody of film genres like the buddy cop theme and Michael Bay action films with its excessive violence. It also parodies and challenges racial and cultural stereotypes thanks to Key & Peele’s funny performances. In the end I recommend this to other movie lovers to enjoy all the film references and to stay during the end credits for more that will tickle the funny bone of every film geek! And if you love kittens you have to see this fantastic little actor!

Being a geek is about being true to yourself and what you love. It’s about celebrating your unique identity that always leads to your unique skills, gifts and talents that you can offer the world. And embracing your inner geek is also knowing you are not alone in your passions. There are others that understand your personal interests and will be eager to share their enthusiasm with you! Connect with them today!


Related Tips:
Tip#251: Be Yourself - Fanboys
Tip#702: Great Leadership in Movies, Part 1 – Ender’s Game
Tip#759: Expand Your Mind with Time Travel Movies, Pt 2 - X-Men: Days of Future Past


ON SALE NOW:
Top Inspiring Women in the Movies:
15 Films for Leadership at Work & in Life
The latest eBook by Emmanuel Lopez: Click Here

LISTEN TO EMMANUEL’S CBC RADIO INTERVIEW on
MOVIE MESSAGES OF HOPE: Fresh Air Show 14 minutes

Remember How Movies Can Help You: 
A) Entertain & Escape 
B) Re-energize & Release 
C) Inspiration & Motivation 

http://bit.ly/cxjH4Zhttp://bit.ly/cj7UIphttp://www.pinterest.com/motivatorman1/http://bit.ly/9Je5dhhttp://bit.ly/djk9Yjhttp://bit.ly/bUSAy0

Emmanuel Lopez-Motivatorman
Motivational Speaker & Movie Blogger
Discover How Movies Inspire Resilience & Indestructible Optimism
See website: www.motivatorman.com

© Emmanuel Lopez 2016

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Tip#951: Life Lessons in Your Favourite Movies, Part 4 – Learnography’s Brunchography – Freedom Writers

I recently had the honor of being the opening speaker for Learnography’s first Brunchography event hosted by CEO, Amy Coupal. It was an exciting gathering of educators from various fields networking and listening to a series of other engaging speakers. A tasty brunch was served at Toronto’s chic boutique hotel and restaurant The Beverley Hotel. I loved the eggs florentine and fresh croissants! Deeelicious!

As I mentioned in the recent tip#948 I loved the enthusiastic energy of the packed room as I launched into my presentation called “Life Lessons from the Movies”. When I asked, by a show of hands, who had seen my favourite movies Groundhog Day and Jerry Maguire most of the attendees put up their hands! I then explained how powerful these two films can be as teaching tools because these movies taught me how to manage burnout, clinical depression and maintain a positive, productive mindset over many years. Bonding over movies with the audience was so electric and enjoyable and I received some wonderful feedback.

“Emmanuel has us looking at movies through an Emotional Intelligence lens – great lessons for teens and adults.”
Terry Whitmell, Principal, Brampton Centennial Secondary School

“Emmanuel’s engaging style entertained the audience while using popular media, specifically movies, to relate to the challenges that we have all faced in our personal and professional lives.”
Stephanie Rose, Learning & Engagement Specialist

“Inspiration can come from unexpected and accessible places like the magic of film. Motivatorman reminds us that we can take control of our lives and claim the lessons we want to hear most with the ease of watching a movie.”
Juliana Trichilo Cina, Solutions Director, Learnography

“Emmanuel did a fantastic job kicking off our event. He helped connect the movies to his personal challenges and invited us to do the same. His vulnerability and honesty helped everyone relax and fully engage in our time together.”
Amy Coupal, CEO, Learnography

 Playing & working with Lego as an effective learning tool

The other speakers also brought much insight in their areas of expertise such as Learnography’s Juliana Trichilio Cina with her presentation “Does eLearning Need to Adapt”. Marguerite Mcleod-Fleming then got us all playing with Lego pieces as a unique tool for learning during her talk “Innovative & Creative Thinking”. They were followed by Gabriella Fermo with “Choosing & Using Assessment Tools”, Penny deLuna with “What no one tells you about mobile learning” and Alex Gill with “What can nonprofits learn from Google?”.

With Gabriella Fermo, Juliana Trichilo Cina and Amy Coupal

In the end what amazed me was that it felt like a full day of enjoyable learning and interaction when it was actually only noon. This is a testament to an excellent and fun event organized by Kyla Clarke and her team at Learnography! The enthusiastic energy at the event reminded me of one of my favourite movies about a real-life educator and movie hero.

Eggs Florentine. Deeelicious!

Freedom Writers (2007)

The drama film, Freedom Writers, is based on the true story of an enthusiastic teacher, Erin Gruwell (Hillary Swank), who is challenged by "at-risk" students and racial tensions in a Los Angeles high school. This highly engaging story features many riveting scenes and performances with Swank and youths played powerfully by first time actors. See: movie trailer


Gruwell is faced with seemingly impossible barriers and attitudes from the students and yet she demonstrates multiple leadership qualities such as passion, perseverance, resilience, creative thinking, having a vision and indestructible optimism. She uses highly effective learning tools that slowly reach each student and allows them to release trapped emotions. They learn how to find themselves and their dreams with the unexpected help from one another.

Inspiring Themes:
• Having a Vision
• Passion
• Courage
• Perseverance
• Resilience
• Indestructible Optimism
• Creative Thinking
• Creative Expression
• Finding Yourself
• Leadership
• Teamwork
• Supportive Relationships
• Family & Community

I highly recommend this inspiring film as a must-see movie for all educators. Gruwell is an outstanding cinematic role model of overflowing inner strength which is why I featured her as one of my top 15 inspiring women in the movies eBook (more info here). Learn more about the real-life Erin Gruwell and her continuing work: Freedom Writers Foundation

Movies can be a powerful learning and teaching tool for anyone of any age. They can provide us with movie heroes that demonstrate inner strengths, skills and talents that can mirror our own potential. Take a look at your favourite movies today with new, conscious eyes and recognize that they’ve already been teaching and empowering you to be the best you can be!

“Everything I learned I learned from the movies.” 
Audrey Hepburn

“That’s part of your problem, you haven’t seen enough movies. All of life’s riddles are answered in the movies.” 
Grand Canyon (1991)

Related Tips:
Tip#642: Life Lessons in Your Favourite Movies, Part 1 - The Croods
Tip#701: Life Lessons in Your Favourite Movies, Part 2 - About Time 
Tip#901: Life Lessons in Your Favourite Movies, Part 3 - A Home of Our Own  
Tip#951: Life Lessons in Your Favourite Movies, Part 4 – Learnography’s Brunchography – Freedom Writers  


ON SALE NOW:
Top Inspiring Women in the Movies:
15 Films for Leadership at Work & in Life
The latest eBook by Emmanuel Lopez: Click Here

LISTEN TO EMMANUEL’S CBC RADIO INTERVIEW on
MOVIE MESSAGES OF HOPE: Fresh Air Show 14 minutes

Remember How Movies Can Help You: 
A) Entertain & Escape 
B) Re-energize & Release 
C) Inspiration & Motivation 

http://bit.ly/cxjH4Zhttp://bit.ly/cj7UIphttp://www.pinterest.com/motivatorman1/http://bit.ly/9Je5dhhttp://bit.ly/djk9Yjhttp://bit.ly/bUSAy0

Emmanuel Lopez-Motivatorman
Motivational Speaker & Movie Blogger
Discover How Movies Inspire Resilience & Indestructible Optimism
See website: www.motivatorman.com

© Emmanuel Lopez 2016

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Tip#950: How Movies Inspire Creativity – Prince - Purple Rain

On April 21, 2016 I was so shocked and saddened by the unexpected passing of musical legend Prince. I loved his inventive vision and bold directions in music and fashion for over three decades. Amazingly he never seemed to age over the years! When his Purple Rain movie and album came out in 1984 it really inspired my creative, colourful art experimentation during my years at the Ontario College of Art (now OCADU).

During that time Prince’s costumes with it’s floral and paisley fashions inspired me to use similar patterns in my art collages and soon in my commercial illustration work. Prince's influence led me to a very successful 20+ years as an illustrator and owning my own business! Here's his portrait I did in art college for an illustration project to create a cover for Time magazine. Below that is an collage example of an unreleased portfolio series.


Purple Rain (1984)

The rock musical drama, Purple Rain, is about a Minneapolis musician, the Kid (Prince), on the rise with his band as he deals with a troubled home life, abusive father as well as a rival band and love interest. This film and its colourful nightclub world and outstanding musical performances launched Prince into the global spotlight and have become a big part of pop culture history. See: movie trailer

I loved every performance and choreography and all the fantastic songs in the movie like Let’s Go Crazy, Computer Blue, Darling Nikki and When Doves Cry. The movie and the soundtrack became part of a memorable summertime and it also won numerous awards including an Oscar for Best Original Song Score. I also got to see Prince's stunning live Purple Rain show and stood right in front of the stage just a few feet away from him! There was just this electricity and excitement about the songs, the film and live concert that helped me inject so much creative juice into my art at the time!


I also remember so vividly hearing When Doves Cry playing on the radio for the first time as I was driving to work as a caricature artist at Canada’s Wonderland. I was with my girlfriend and it was a breezy sunny clear summer day. We were riveted to the song which had such a unique, pounding sound. Years later I would learn that Prince had removed the bass guitar part which was very unusual for an 80’s dance song. This was just part of Prince’s inventive genius that inspired my own creative spirit for many years. I will always be grateful for his courage in following his own path and for leaving the world so many musical legacies.

Are there creative people that influenced your path or career in life? Did Prince or Purple Rain inspire you in some way over the years? Or do you have favourite movies that have inspired your creativity growing up like art, music, writing or performing? Films can be filled with exciting images, sounds, characters, music and songs. Let these cinematic elements move your heart and mind to create amazing directions in your life and work today!

ON SALE NOW:
Top Inspiring Women in the Movies:
15 Films for Leadership at Work & in Life
The latest eBook by Emmanuel Lopez: Click Here

LISTEN TO EMMANUEL’S CBC RADIO INTERVIEW on
MOVIE MESSAGES OF HOPE: Fresh Air Show 14 minutes

Remember How Movies Can Help You: 
A) Entertain & Escape 
B) Re-energize & Release 
C) Inspiration & Motivation 

http://bit.ly/cxjH4Zhttp://bit.ly/cj7UIphttp://www.pinterest.com/motivatorman1/http://bit.ly/9Je5dhhttp://bit.ly/djk9Yjhttp://bit.ly/bUSAy0

Emmanuel Lopez-Motivatorman
Professional Speaker & Movie Blogger
Discover How Movies Inspire Resilience & Indestructible Optimism
See website: www.motivatorman.com

© Emmanuel Lopez 2016

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Tip#949: Benefits of Box-Office Bombs, Part 3 – Gods of Egypt

“Is the glass half empty or half full?” is an expression about having a pessimistic (half empty) or optimistic (half full) point of view in a particular situation. I believe having an optimistic mindset can help anyone see hidden benefits in something that initially appears negative.

This is why activating indestructible optimism is a key factor I teach in my motivational presentations for managing difficult times and depression. It can help you recognize the positives in the negatives in front of you. It is also an attitude I highly recommend when seeing movies because even “bad” movies or films with negative reviews can have a silver lining of something meaningful or inspirational for you!

Great Article: Loving Something That Everyone Else Hates: A Handy How-To Guide

Gods of Egypt (2016)

The fantasy action film, Gods of Egypt, is set in an alternate world of ancient Egypt where the mortal hero Bek (Brenton Thwaites) teams up with the god Horus (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) against the god of darkness Set (Gerard Butler) who had stolen Egypt’s throne. With co-stars √Člodie Yung, Geoffrey Rush and Courtney Eaton this is a highly entertaining adventure with some amazing, creative imagery, lavish sets and costumes. See 2nd trailer much better than 1st: movie trailer

This film reminded me of the old stop motion/live action fantasies I loved growing up like Jason and the Argonauts (1963) and The 7th Voyage of Sinbad (1958). This is just one of those films you need to see for yourself if whatever I wrote about it interests you. It’s a movie that can help you escape and enjoy another world for awhile filled with monsters, heroes, romance and adventure!


I’ll admit the first trailer was a bit baffling to what this movie was about and then scathing reviews and controversies over casting choices made me uninterested in seeing this film. But one thing changed my attitude to “half full” when I discovered it was directed by Alex Proyas. He had directed two amazing movies I enjoyed which were Dark City starring Rufus Sewell and Knowing starring Nicholas Cage.

This change in attitude was similar to my experience with Cameron Crowe’s film Aloha I featured in tip#875. It was a feeling of trust I had with these directors and in the end I really enjoyed their films once I put aside any negative thoughts I had. And being entertained is always my number one factor for a successful film because then I feel good, energized and inspired to get back to work or whatever challenges I need to deal with in life!

So are you a glass half empty or half full kind of person? Do you let negative comments about situations like movies sway your opinion or do you take leadership in your life and experience them for yourself? Activate your indestructible optimism today and you’ll see amazing, hidden positives in any challenge that comes your way!

Related Tips:
Tip#664: Benefits of Box Office Bombs, Part 1 – After Earth 
Tip#875: Benefits of Box-Office Bombs, Part 2 - Aloha  
Tip#949: Benefits of Box-Office Bombs, Part 3 – Gods of Egypt 

ON SALE NOW:
Top Inspiring Women in the Movies:
15 Films for Leadership at Work & in Life
The latest eBook by Emmanuel Lopez: Click Here

LISTEN TO EMMANUEL’S CBC RADIO INTERVIEW on
MOVIE MESSAGES OF HOPE: Fresh Air Show 14 minutes

Remember How Movies Can Help You: 
A) Entertain & Escape 
B) Re-energize & Release 
C) Inspiration & Motivation 

http://bit.ly/cxjH4Zhttp://bit.ly/cj7UIphttp://www.pinterest.com/motivatorman1/http://bit.ly/9Je5dhhttp://bit.ly/djk9Yjhttp://bit.ly/bUSAy0

Emmanuel Lopez-Motivatorman
Motivational Speaker & Movie Blogger
Discover How Movies Inspire Resilience & Indestructible Optimism
See website: www.motivatorman.com

© Emmanuel Lopez 2016