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The 6th Degree

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Sometimes I go crazy playing mini games of “Kevin Bacon is the Center of the Universe” inside my head. Only I never start with Kevin Bacon, because honestly, he creeps me out a little.

(too creepy!!!)--->

Instead, I start with someone I’m totally obsessing over at that moment. For example: Emma Stone.

And here we go!

Emma Stone is starring in the new re-hash of Spider-Man with Andrew Garfield, who was in The Social Network with Jesse Eisenberg who was in Zombieland with Woody Harrelson who was in Defendor with Kat Dennings who’s Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist Co-Star, Michael Cera, was in Juno with Ellen Page who has been in two movies with Rainn Wilson (Juno and Super), who was in The Rocker with Emma Stone.

I know I could have killed that twice since Emma Stone was ALSO in Zombieland with Jesse Eisenberg, AND in Superbad with Michael Cera… but I try to keep it going until I think of an obscure movie to end with. I also like to see the patterns, like the fact that three of the movies I mentioned are about superheroes (or people who THINK they're superheroes), that people FREQUENTLY confuse Michael Cera and Jesse Eisenberg due to their similar dead-pan and awkward delivery styles, and that Zombieland and Adventureland, both starring Eisenberg, came out in the same year.

Now Adventureland also stars Kristen Stewart, whose rumoured relationship with Twilight co-star Robert Pattinson has been fodder for rags for over three years… Pattinson was in Harry Potter with… Okay, okay. I’ll stop. But it’s totally a riot. We’d LOVE to see the 6 Degrees of Separation you guys come up with!

by guest blogger Alex-

School Daze

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Easy A movie posterNever remiss to the needs of kids, Movie Maniacs have asked Services for Children, Teens, and Families to post a list of Back-to-School movies for the age range of those who are ACTUALLY going back to school! For all you older kids who are still wearing out the tape on your fave John Hughes movies, you might be interested in some of these *cough* newer *cough* titles as well.

The first recommendation is Easy A – starring the delightful Emma Stone (who we’ll be seeing frequently on the big screen this year) and quite a few other familiar faces (Stanley Tucci, Thomas Haden Church and Malcolm McDowell for the older crowd, and Teen T.V. perennials Penn Badgley, Cam Gigandet and Amanda Bynes for the younger). Olive is a high school bookworm whoNapoleon Dynamite Movie Poster studies Nathaniel Hawthorne in her favourite English class. When she helps a socially-challenged friend rank a little higher in the pecking order by lying about their romantic exploits, the rumor mill runs rampant. She embraces the Scarlet Letter that Hawthorne's character never could, until things start to backfire. Surprisingly intelligent, hugely entertaining, and truly heartfelt, this movie gives a fresh and fun nod to the classic teen flicks of the 80s while remaining totally original. PG-13

There’s not a lot I can say about the next film on my list, Napoleon Dynamite. You’ll either love it or you’ll hate it, and you’ll know within the first twenty minutes whether its deadpan style is for you. If you missed this 2004 release the first time around, it’s worth a borrow, if only because this highly quotable movie is the source of a lot of pop culture references today. Heck yes! It's flipping sweet. PG

Mean Girls Movie PosterAnother [slightly] oldy-but-goody is Mean Girls, also from 2004. Scripted by 30 Rock’s hilarious Tina Fey, this fictional movie adaptation of the non-fictional Queen Bees and Wannabees stars Rachel McAdams and Amanda SeyfriedSuperbad Movie Poster (before they were anyone) and Lindsay Lohan (before she was… well… just too much for anyone). While it views like a regular teen-chick flick, full of the fashion and backstabbing that is so overproduced by MTV these days, it is actually incredibly insightful and genuine. I wonder if the High School experience of these girls resonates as deeply with everyone as it does with me. PG-13

Superbad: An inappropriate and side-splitting story of underage underdogs trying to make all thier dreams come true at the last High School party before graduation. Rated R and it deserves it, but if you can make it through the language it’s extremely entertaining and oddly, kind of lovely.

And just for the 13 and unders, here are a couple of the fun and totally PG movies available at Calgary Public Library starring real children, not just adults pretending to be teens:

Nancy Drew (with Emma Roberts)

Harry Potter (the epitome of school days movies -- on blu-ray and DVD)

Sky High (fun for the whole family)

School of Rock (check out Miranda Cosgrove! She's like ten!!!)

Diary of a Wimpy Kid (we love the graphic novels because they get kids reading, but the movie had me in stitches!)

A Little Princess (it never gets old, but I like this 1995 version best)

Thanks to our Guest Blogger Alex for the above list. This is a niche I tend to avoid because often I just can't make it through the current teen offerings. But I have seen several of the above, and I know she has seen them all, so have a look. While you're at it, drop in to the TEEN ZONE BLOG where they have myriads of book recommendations, some great contests and are just generally plugged into all things kids and teens. Thanks Alex.

by Moe

Great Adaptations-YA Fiction

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Twilight and Harry Potter seem to get all the press, but there are some fantastic, yet little seen, films being adapted from young adult fiction. You can browse the Teen titles in our collection by doing a subject search of 'teen films'.

Here are a few suggestions to hold you over until the Hunger Games trilogy makes its way to the theatre.

Paranoid Park (2008) is a haunting portrait of a young skateboarder who accidently kills a security guard. The film was adapted and directed by Gus Van Sant, from the novel of the same name by Blake Nelson. This is a smart and expertly crafted coming-of-age film, that was well reviewed and little seen. It was released the same year as Van Sant's 'Milk' and seemed to get forgotten about. Which is strange because once seen, this film is hard to forget. The film also boasts a strong soundtrack by Elliott Smith and Nino Rota.

One of my favourite YA novels is Skellig by David Almond. The story centres around a young teen who befriends a bird/angel-ish creature hidden in his garage. The books was adapted for British TV in 2009 with Oscar-nominee Tim Roth in the title role. The movie 'Skellig: The Owl Man" was recently added into the CPL catalogue.

For something a little lighter, try Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging. The quirky tale of 14 year old Georgia Groome, who only wants a boyfriend and to throw the greatest birthday party ever. A charming film by Gurinder Chada, the director of the equally charming Bend it like Beckham.

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