I've been doing some Serendipity development with this one guy (I won't mention his name unless he tells me to). I think his ideas have been advancing Serendipity by giant leaps. He was so happy with my help that he donated to my Serendipity Development.


I tried to give it back, but he just wouldn't let me. I was going to re-donate it to other developers I thought worthy, but he made it quite clear that he was compensating me for the time I spent away from my family, and I should use the money for family time.

Today I took the family to see Horton Hears a Who. Great kid's flick. Thanks, semi-anonymous donor!

And I had to use it all, and a little bit more, too! Please don't hate me for being cliche.

Tickets for two children, one student, and two adults: $42. ($36 after discount)
Four hot dogs (dinner): $16.
Movie drinks and snacks: $25.50.
Paying for it with donations: priceless.

The movie itself was fantastic. Kayla sat in the wheelchair space, which was an excellent seat. (I need to break my leg!) She was laughing, gasping, or rollicking through the whole movie. My other kids were not that involved, but they did get immersed and enjoyed themselves heartily.

It had been a long day for Erica, and some movie relaxation was just what she needed.

The animation was occasionally so good as to be indistinguishable from film footage. The water, in particular, was quite impressive. Of course, Pixar made us expect realistic fur with Monsters Inc., but Horton had fur everywhere. Even on the trees. The models matched the books so exactly, I felt as though Seuss had drawn from the movie, instead of the other way around.

The cinematography was excellent: perfect timing, with zooms that conveyed change of scene or excitement without becoming frenetic. The voice actors did an outstanding job, and really conveyed the emotion. I'm normally turned off by physical comedy -- especially the crude stuff -- but the only instance here was mitigated quite neatly with a callback joke.

And of course the story is a classic. Some dramatic license was taken, but I'm not overly concerned about that: if I wanted to convey Theodore Geisel's exact words, I'd read the book. (And how else are you supposed to stretch those meager pages into an hour and a half of movie?) The characters' essential nature was superbly conveyed, and the overall message was obvious.

In fact, I was rather uncomfortable with the lone self-righteous egomaniac manipulating the crowd so easily. It was a little too close to current conditions.

But don't take that as criticism! In fact, I can't find anything I didn't like about the film. My only complaint is that the trailer for WALL-E was too long (leave something for the movie, guys!).

Next time I'll make the kids sandwiches at home, so I don't wind up paying so much for hot dogs. But it was worth the price for such family fun!

Thanks again, donor!