Posted in Entertainment

‘THE LOST CITY’ opens in cinemas this Friday, 22 April

THE LOST CITY opens in cinemas this Friday, 22 April.  The film stars Sandra Bullock, Channing Tatum and Daniel Radcliffe and is directed by Adam Nee and Aaron Nee.

 

Sandra Bullock and Channing Tatum star in Paramount Pictures’ “THE LOST CITY.”

SYNOPSIS

Brilliant, but reclusive author Loretta Sage (Sandra Bullock) has spent her career writing about exotic places in her popular romance-adventure novels featuring handsome cover model Alan (Channing Tatum), who has dedicated his life to embodying the hero character, “Dash.” While on tour promoting her new book with Alan, Loretta is kidnapped by an eccentric billionaire (Daniel Radcliffe) who hopes that she can lead him to the ancient lost city’s treasure from her latest story. Wanting to prove that he can be a hero in real life and not just on the pages of her books, Alan sets off to rescue her. Thrust into an epic jungle adventure, the unlikely pair will need to work together to survive the elements and find the ancient treasure before it’s lost forever.

 

You can watch the trailer here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3lsIZjlf314

Posted in Entertainment

This April, being BAD never looked so GOOD. See “The Bad Guys” – only in cinemas 8 April 2022

 

Nobody has ever failed so hard at trying to be good as The Bad Guys.

 

In the new action comedy from DreamWorks Animation, based on the New York Times best-selling book series, a crackerjack criminal crew of animal outlaws are about to attempt their most challenging con yet—becoming model citizens.

Never have there been five friends as infamous as The Bad Guys—dashing pickpocket Mr. Wolf (Academy Award® winner Sam Rockwell, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri), seen-it-all safecracker Mr. Snake (Marc Maron, GLOW), chill master-of-disguise Mr. Shark (Craig Robinson, Hot Tub Time Machine franchise), short-fused “muscle” Mr. Piranha (Anthony Ramos, In the Heights) and sharp-tongued expert hacker Ms. Tarantula (Awkwafina, Crazy Rich Asians), aka “Webs.”

But when, after years of countless heists and being the world’s most-wanted villains, the gang is finally caught, Mr. Wolf brokers a deal (that he has no intention of keeping) to save them all from prison: The Bad Guys will go good.

Under the tutelage of their mentor Professor Marmalade (Richard Ayoade, Paddington 2), an arrogant (but adorable!) guinea pig, The Bad Guys set out to fool the world that they’ve been transformed. Along the way, though, Mr. Wolf begins to suspect that doing good for real may give him what he’s always secretly longed for: acceptance. So when a new villain threatens the city, can Mr. Wolf persuade the rest of the gang to become … The Good Guys?

The film co-stars Zazie Beetz (Joker), Lilly Singh (Bad Moms) and Emmy winner Alex Borstein (The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel).

Based on the blockbuster Scholastic book series by Aaron Blabey, The Bad Guys is directed by Pierre Perifel (animator, the Kung Fu Panda films), making his feature-directing debut. The film is produced by Damon Ross (development executive TrollsThe Boss Baby, co-producer Nacho Libre) and Rebecca Huntley (associate producer, The Boss Baby). The executive producers are Aaron Blabey, Etan Cohen and Patrick Hughes.

Posted in Entertainment

Brace(s) yourself. Otto—and Minions: The Rise of Gru—is coming to cinemas in July 2022!

Minions: The Rise of Gru

 

Genre:                  Action-Comedy

Cast:                     Steve Carell, Taraji P. Henson, Michelle Yeoh, RZA, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Lucy Lawless, Dolph                                  Lundgren, Danny Trejo, Russell Brand, with Julie Andrews and Alan Arkin

Director:               Kyle Balda

Co-Directors:        Brad Ableson, Jonathan del Val

Producers:           Chris Meledandri, Janet Healy, Chris Renaud

Next summer, from the biggest animated franchise in history and global cultural phenomenon, comes the untold story of one 12-year-old’s dream to become the world’s greatest supervillain, in Minions: The Rise of Gru.

In the heart of the 1970s, amid a flurry of feathered hair and flared jeans, Gru (Oscar® nominee Steve Carell) is growing up in the suburbs. A fanboy of a supervillain supergroup known as the Vicious 6, Gru hatches a plan to become evil enough to join them. Luckily, he gets some mayhem-making backup from his loyal followers, the Minions. Together, Kevin, Stuart, Bob, and Otto—a new Minion sporting braces and a desperate need to please—deploy their skills as they and Gru build their first lair, experiment with their first weapons and pull off their first missions.

When the Vicious 6 oust their leader, legendary fighter Wild Knuckles (Oscar® winner Alan Arkin), Gru interviews to become their newest member. It doesn’t go well (to say the least), and only gets worse after Gru outsmarts them and suddenly finds himself the mortal enemy of the apex of evil. On the run, Gru will turn to an unlikely source for guidance, Wild Knuckles himself, and discover that even bad guys need a little help from their friends.

Teeming with Illumination’s signature subversive humour, pop-culture sophistication, full-hearted emotion, bold music sensibility, and over-the-top action, Minions: The Rise of Gru features a thrilling new cast of stars, including, as members of the Vicious 6, Taraji P. Henson as cool and confident leader Belle Bottom, Jean-Claude Van Damme as Jean Clawed, Lucy Lawless as Nunchuck, Dolph Lundgren as Svengeance and Danny Trejo as Stronghold. The film also features Russell Brand as Dr. Nefario, an aspiring mad scientist, Michelle Yeoh as Master Chow, an acupuncturist with mad Kung Fu skills, and Oscar® winner Julie Andrews as Gru’s maddeningly self-absorbed mom.

Steered by the franchise’s original creators, Minions: The Rise of Gru is produced by visionary Illumination founder and CEO Chris Meledandri and his long time collaborators Janet Healy and Chris Renaud. The film is directed by returning franchise filmmaker Kyle Balda (Despicable Me 3Minions), co-directed by Brad Ableson (The Simpsons) and Jonathan del Val (The Secret Life of Pets films), and features the iconic voice of Pierre Coffin as the Minions and a killer ʼ70s soundtrack courtesy of legendary Grammy-winning music producer Jack Antonoff.

Posted in Cape Town - Things to see & do, Competitions, Entertainment, Events, Family Life, Family Time

Superbook presents “The First Christmas “at the V & A Waterfront and a Giveaway

As we turn the page to the last month of 2021 and begin to prepare our homes for the coming Advent season so do we as parents prepare our families’ hearts for the true reason behind the Christmas festivities.

Two years ago I was desperately searching for a way that Hamish could enjoy the magic of Christmas and somehow still know the true reason for the season. He was still really little and although we had read the story of the birth of Christ in his Bible book, he was unable to put the connection between the birth of Jesus and Christmas.

I then discovered that Superbook had a beautiful Christmas DVD combo consisting of 2 stories:

The first Christmas and The birth of John the Baptist

I knew this was the perfect opportunity for me to help him see the Bible come to life as we watched the story of the First Christmas together. We have since watched this DVD several times and he has begun to understand that Christmas is so much more than just Santa, his elves, and gifts.

You can read the review here

More than just a DVD

However, something else happened that first day that we met the Superbook team to receive the DVD. Superbook was no longer just another brand or a product we would cast on a shelf until we needed it. Superbook became real to Hamish as he asked for Gizmo, the cute robot mascot, and eagerly wanted to watch more movies.

Read about Superbook movie nights here 

Superbook became a safe App on my phone for Hamish to play games and watch Bibles stories. We followed their social media and used the crafts in our homeschool Bible lessons and all too soon we found ourselves ready to celebrate another Christmas and this time I confidently knew where to turn to prepare Hamish’s heart for the coming festive season.

Last year, we, once again, excitedly, joined the Superbook First Christmas experience and made advent crafts while we decorated our homes, baked cookies, and got ready to join people from all over South Africa to watch The first Christmas episode at the same time and see how Chris and Joy, together with Gizmo find out the true meaning of Christmas.

Superbook has become an important part of our family’s Christmas traditions.

Read why I feel Superbook brings back the heart of Christmas here 

The first Christmas experience and you are invited

This year Superbook will host a fun and meaningful Christmas experience at the V & A amphitheater on the 3 and 4 December from 11am- 12pm and you are invited to bring your children and experience the magic as they watch the nativity come alive on screen in a fun and relatable way that children can truly grasp.

The show is free and your children will enjoy watching, laughing, dancing, singing, and even getting to meet Gizmo the robot. Hamish and I are both super excited and can’t wait. It promises to be a wonderful experience, great morning out, and a fantastic way for us to start our advent season.

Giveaway

To help share the Christmas spirit we have collaborated with Superbook to bless one lucky Fun Mamma SA reader with a wonderful Superbook hamper.

To enter answer below with the Superbook robots name.

The competition closes Monday 6 December 2021

Posted in Education, Entertainment, Family Life, Parenting

Safe Online Games for Children

I sat with a friend the other day and as we have both raised adult children and are once again bringing up little ones, we discussed how things had changed with the introduction of technology, technological devices, and technological toys being so readily available today.

Ten or fifteen years ago we allowed our teens to get cell phones at 16, bought specific learning programs for our PC for younger kids, and only let them play games if they were on a console like PlayStation or Wii.

Nowadays my 5-year-old has his smartphone, used under supervision and mainly for youtube kids. He also owns a kids tablet, several smart toys that require technology to work, and can use a laptop as well as we can.

Naturally, screen time is a concern and we balance his technology time with other activities like playing, crafting, reading, and being outside.

but

We do encourage him to play educational games and as a homeschool mom, I firmly believe that his general knowledge, reading skills, maths skills, and logic are developed through the use of online educational games.

Finding good quality online games

So, I am constantly looking for good quality, trusted sites where I can find new games that will both stimulate and entertain Hamish. One of the great sites I’ve come across is http://www.plays.org

Plays.org is a user-friendly site that offers you a wide assortment of free, fun games that you can quickly play on your browser.

Unlike many other game sites which have a ton of ads or require downloads before you start to play, I discovered that Plays.org did not require you to register or set up an account before playing. You also do not need to download an App first, instead, you can simply log on and pick a game to start playing any time you like.

The games are simple, easy to beat, and reminiscent of the old Nintendo console games.

Their simplicity, and lack of ads and upgrades needed, for me as a mom, allows me the knowledge that Hamish is playing a game intended to let him have fun, learn something and retain the innocence of childhood, even in such a fast-paced modern world.

Top 3 Games that we are enjoying

I have only been using the site for the last month and we’ve tried several games, however these are the games we are currently enjoying for entertainment and learning at home…….

Pac-Rat

I love this game, inspired by the arcade classic Pacman.

The object is to eat the cheese whilst avoiding the cats. Your child will use the arrow keys to move the rat and a level is complete when all the cheese has been eaten. However, if a cat bumps into you are dead, unless you ate a power pellet which turns you into a ghost and lets you eat the cats.

Unlike the original Pac-Man, this game is easier with just 6 levels and slower speeds.

This game is fun and great to replay until you master a level. Hamish at 5 thoroughly enjoyed this and did not find it too difficult.

AGE; 5+

Complete the Sequence

This cute kindergarten maths game requires your child to put the numbers in the correct sequence. With 3 levels of difficulty – easy, medium, and hard- your child can pop the bubble that contains the correct number to finish the sequence.

A great beginner numbers game that allows your child to practice maths skills, number recognition and develop their hand-eye coordination as they look to find the correct bubble. A graph underneath shows if the sequence is in ascending or descending order and all sequences are randomly generated.

We are currently using this game as a brain break in our homeschool maths lessons.

Age: 3+

 

Dinosaur Train bridge builder

This has to be Hamish’s favorite game. He loves dinosaurs and has watched every episode of Dinosaur Train and so finding a fun game with his favorite dinosaurs from Troodon Town was a bonus.

Designed for preschoolers, your child will help the dinosaurs to cross the chasm by breaking down numbers and adding them up, finding the length of the chasm, and choosing the log bridge units that are the same length as the chasm.

When your child has found the right length the dinosaur will cross the bridge. This took some time for Hamish to master but it was easy enough for him to grasp after I initially showed him how to measure.

Age:3+

Comments

I was impressed to find that there is a game for everyone. From educational games that help your child with reading, spelling, and maths to character games like Avengers, Tom & Jerry, and Batman to simple old-school fun games like Tetris.

The games are both PC and smartphone or Tablet compatible, allowing you to play anywhere and the games save to your web browser for you to log back in and replay.

Overall I was really impressed to find such a comprehensive library of fun and educational games on a safe site to use for Hamish.

Have you tried this site before? If so, what was your favorite game?

Posted in Education, Entertainment, Press releases

Why We Should Watch Greta Thunberg: A Year To Change The World

A Year To Change The World airs on Sunday 23rd May at 16:10 on BBC Earth (DStv channel 184)

Greta Thunberg: A year to change the world

In 2018, Swedish teenager, Greta Thunberg stepped onto the world stage, challenging world leaders to take immediate action against climate change. Her solo ‘school strike for the climate’ demonstration outside Swedish Parliament has inspired a global movement mobilizing millions of people, especially youth, to demand real action from leaders in terms of climate change.

 

While she has garnered a strong following, she has also been met with criticism from those who disagree with her views. Despite the critics, Greta has reawakened and empowered a global conversation around climate change – unleashing a genie that won’t be put back into its bottle.

 

From Sunday 23rd May, BBC Earth (DStv Channel 184) will broadcast Greta Thunberg: A Year To Change The World. Join the then sixteen-year-old as she takes a year off school to explore the science of global warming.  Traveling across the globe, Greta explores the science – from the melting glaciers of Canada to the coal mines of Europe.  She witnesses first-hand the consequences of climate change and makes clear the reasons why she thinks something must be done right now. On her journey she meets climate scientists and confronts the complexity of what is required to make change happen.  Encounters with some of the world’s leading scientists and economists allow the series to examine what the latest science tells us about what can be done to avert the worst effects of climate change.  When Covid-19 brings life to a standstill Greta is faced with an even bigger challenge – to convince a world reeling from one crisis, to finally face another.

Here are five key facts about Greta Thunberg:

  • She has inspired a global movement – Fridays For Future with millions of people around the world taking part in protests to make the point. UK media regulator Ofcom coined the term the ‘’Greta Effect’’ to explain the increase in engagement by children in online activism compared to previous years.
  • She leads by example– she has convinced her family to implement several lifestyle changes to reduce their cardon footprint including adopting veganism and upcycling as well as a no-fly policy. To get to the United States and take part in the United Nations summit, she found a carbon neutral mode of transport in the form of a two-week trans-Atlantic journey aboard a racing yacht. 

 

  • Her words have impact. Greta’s “How dare you? You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words,’’ speech at the 2018 United Nations Climate Change Conference went viral and has even been incorporated into songs and slogans.

 

  • She has received recognition from leading bodies including, amongst others, Amnesty International Ambassador of Conscience Award, Right Livelihood Award and the International Children’s Peace Prize. In 2019 she was the youngest person to be named TIME Person of the Year, was included in Forbes list of the World’s 100 Most Powerful Women and has received three consecutive Nobel Peace Prize Nominations.

 

  • She has the attention of world leaders and international bodies that can help to drive change.  Greta has met with several heads of state, expert climate scientists from around the globe, as well as Pope Francis, and Sir David Attenborough. She’s also testified before Congress, the European Parliament and the United Nations.

 

And finally, “For reasons I don’t understand people listen when I talk, but I don’t want that, I don’t want you to listen to me I want you to listen to the science… before it’s too late!’’  – Greta Thunberg

 

Follow the conversation on BBC Earth and @bbcstudiosafrica on Instagram.