Monday, August 20, 2007

The Kid Friendly Artist Known as Prince?

Last night, the four of us went to the NIH Film Festival. This is a great ten-night series of movies held on the lawn of the Strathmore and American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, with all of the donated proceeds going to the NIH's children's charities. We've been going to this cool community event ever since it started a decade ago and have some funny little memories that we carry with us. Like the time that Z, who was maybe two years old, laid inside a pillow case motionless for the entire Wizard of Oz. We, of course, thought that he had slept his way right through it. But as soon "The End" flashed up on the screen, Z popped up and announced "I like that pink girl!"

Last night's movie was Happy Feet, an animated film about the emperor penguins of Antarctica. The movie itself was mediocre, Desi and I thought. Some cute characters and excellent animation, but a pretty disjointed (and hackneyed) story line.

But here was the surprising part, for us anyways. One of the main songs in the movie was Prince's "Kiss." You remember how it goes..."I just need your body, baby, from dusk till dawn" and "U can't be 2 flirty, mama, I know how 2 undress me (Yeah)." A funky song full of sexual innuendo...as a centerpiece of a children's movie! And this choice is indicative of how the mating ritual of the emperor penguins is portrayed throughout Happy Feet. There are lots of sinewy, gyrating movements. There is a particularly ostentatious looking male penguin surrounded by an adoring group of females who stand at his beckon and call. There are the slacker guy penguins who spend their time catcalling in the direction of available girls, who have no trouble dishing the trash talk right back. Great fun for the whole family!

~Steve

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