Tuesday, January 19, 2016

My 4D Adventure Contest from LEGOLAND California


By Jonathan Van Tassel

LEGOLAND California Resort is hosting an exclusive preview to its newest attraction “The Lego Movie 4D A New Adventure” on February 4, 2016 for media, special guests, and one lucky family! Enter the video contest “A New Adventure” between January 11 – January 28, 2016 for your chance to be part of the red carpet excitement! 

To enter, you submit a one minute or less video of you trying something new and adventurous somewhere. To submit the video, you can do two things. First, you can submit the video by going to the LEGOLAND California Facebook page and "Like" the page if you haven't already. Then, you compose a new Facebook Timeline post on the page and include the video that shows you and your child doing the things explained earlier. 

The second way you can enter the contest is to go to LEGOLAND California's Twitter page and "Follow" them if you haven't already. Then, compose a new tweet tagged with @LEGOLAND_CA and include the video explained earlier. Make sure to also use the hashtag #My4DAdventure or your entry will not be accepted.

For the official contest rules, click here.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Back in Time Documentary: Review

By Zach Cooper

The first Back to the Future film debuted in 1985. Nearly 30 years later, the films trilogy continues flying off store shelves and inspires the imagination for the young and young at heart.

With the help of backers from around the world on Kickstarter, Jason Aron's documentary, "Back in Time," explores the history of these great films, including many stories never heard before. The documentary includes exclusive interviews with Steven Spielberg, Robert Zemeckis, Bob Gale, Lea Thompson, Christopher Lloyd, Michael J. Fox, Huey Lewis and more.

The 94-minute documentary also includes content like restoring the original Delorian for Universal Studios Hollywood and more about a fake product of the film inspiring kids and inventors alike.

"Back in Time" is a documentary unlike any other and deserves a spot next to the Back to the Future films themselves. For any fan of the movie, it is certainly worth the viewing.

How can you can a hold of the documentary? You can get it by purchasing a DVD on Amazon or digitally on Vimeo.

Star Wars The Force Awakens: Review (Spoiler-Free)

By Nate Fett

From the time the horns started to play that all so familiar song with the opening crawl scrolling upward, chills began to form on my arms and I got that feeling that this movie will be nothing like that of Episodes I-III but more so of Episodes IV-VI.  This was the start of Star Wars: The Force Awakens

The film is being brought to the screen after The Walt Disney Company's acquiring of Lucasfilm. George Lucas turned over the task of directing to JJ Abrams. George Lucas has built an empire on Episodes IV-VI, but at the same time has received much negative criticism for Episodes I-III when he brought the series back in 1999. Once revealed that JJ Abrams signed on to direct the film, all I knew, for me personally, is that JJ had my trust.

Abrams, if you aren’t familiar with him, is the same director that brought one of my personal favorite shows Lost. As well, he also helped me to actually enjoy Star Trek with his 2009 edition of the film. Abrams had the difficult task going into this film of gaining fans trust back in the series as well as gaining new fans with this movie.

I’ll sum this up with a spoiler free summary of the film. Star Wars: The Force Awakens, stars Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Andy Serkis, Lupita Nyong'o and Domnhall Gleeson and returning cast members Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill.  Even though there is nothing mentioned about Luke Skywalker in the trailers, I assure you he is indeed in this movie (shhh…). This movie managed to set its own trend rather than follow in the shoes of the past ones, with characters like Kylo Ren, Rey and Finn, as well as the feisty BB-8 droid.  

Going into this film at 2am on December 18th, I had such high expectations for Kylo and Finn. Believe me they did not disappoint.  Yet it was Daisy Ridley’s Rey that stole my attention and heart in this film, leaving me to no longer care for Katniss as a female tough girl in films these days.

I ended this film and had one word to describe it and that is brilliant.  The vision Abrams brought, the new cast and characters that I have already grown to love.  As well as how beautifully the cinematography was for this movie.  I already made plans to see it again, and I’m sure a third time.  This film is my everything right now when it comes to entertainment and I promise you I’m just like the millions of other die hards that say “I can’t wait two years for Episode VIII”, but I suppose it’s better than waiting 16 long years for the nonsense that was Phantom Menace (with the exception of Darth Maul).  The journey was short, yet the force will live on in a few years and my inner nerd will be waiting in line anticipating.

-Movie trailer embedded from YouTube channel "Star Wars". 

Monday, December 14, 2015

Jenna Elfman Kicks off Holiday Season at LEGOLAND California Resort

By Zach Cooper

On Monday, November 30th, Golden Globe Award winner Jenna Elfman and her two sons took part in the Official Tree Lighting Ceremony, a tradition held annually at LEGOLAND California Resort. Every year, the ceremony kicks off the holiday season for the Resort, which includes Holiday Snow Days and Winter Nights.

This was the thirteenth year of the Official Tree Lighting Ceremony. Past celebrity participants include Tony Hawk, Thomas Gibson, Elizabeth Banks & Sarah Michelle Gellar.

This year, Jenna Elfman, known for her role in "Dharma & Greg," took the stage to light the tree.


On behalf of Jenna Elfman, LEGOLAND California presented a check to Youth for Human Rights International for 10,000 dollars. The nonprofit organization has been committed to helping educate youth on their own human rights to help them become strong advocates of peace. Executive Director of Youth for Human Rights Ruslan Khusainov was present during the ceremony to receive the check, as well as say a few words about the organization.

Full Tree Lighting Ceremony with Jenna Elfman8

Full Tree Lighting Ceremony with Jenna Elfman11

Executive Director Ruslan Khusainov talks about Youth for Human Rights International.

Also during the ceremony, LEGOLAND California Resort General Manager Peter Ronchetti took the stage to share some of the exciting plans for 2016, including a look at new animated footage for NINJAGO The Ride and a screenshot for "The LEGO Movie A New Adventure," set to premiere in the park February 6th, 2016.

Full Tree Lighting Ceremony with Jenna Elfman4

LEGOLAND California Resort General Manager Peter Ronchetti shares exciting plans for 2016. 

Full Tree Lighting Ceremony with Jenna Elfman12

Full Tree Lighting Ceremony with Jenna Elfman13

Full Tree Lighting Ceremony with Jenna Elfman3

Full Tree Lighting Ceremony with Jenna Elfman17

Interview: Jenna Elfman at LEGOLAND California Tree Lighting 2015 1

The ceremony ended Jenna Elfman, her two sons and Santa flipping the switch to officially light the Park's LEGO Christmas Tree, which towers 30-feet high in Fun Town, and built out of more than 245,000 LEGO bricks.

Interview: Jenna Elfman at LEGOLAND California Tree Lighting 2015 2

Following the ceremony, we spoke to Elfman to learn more about Youth for Human Rights and her day at LEGOLAND California Resort.

Monday, December 7, 2015

YouTube Red - The New Netflix?

By Adam Carver

YouTube, as we all know, is a video-sharing website that was founded back in 2005 and was later acquired by Google in 2006. YouTube Red which was launched on October 28, 2015 is a paid subscription service which, among other things, removes advertisements for $10/month. Since the launch of YouTube Red, YouTube has been pushing creators to release more professional content and for movie studios (ie. Paramount) to release their content onto YouTube. This push has led YouTube to have exclusive content that you can only access by paying a fee or having a YouTube Red membership. This exclusive content also puts YouTube into competition with the likes of Netflix and Hulu, only to name a few.  All that said, we will have to wait to see if anything comes out of this or if YouTube will abandon this endeavor in favor of another source of revenue.

*Video courtesy of the YouTube channel "YouTube Spotlight."

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Amazon Prime Air - The Future of Package Delivery?

By Adam Carver

On November 29, 2015, Amazon released their own video, in which Jeremy Clarkson (The former Top Gear presenter) tells a story "from the not-so distant future." The overarching purpose of the video is to explain how Amazon's drone delivery service ("Amazon Prime Air") will work once implemented. Amazon originally announced this service all the back in 2013 but now it seems to have made some serious progress; Amazon has changed almost everything about the drone (except the fact that it is an autonomous VTOL aircraft) that they will be delivering certain small and lightweight packages to customers in a claimed, "30 minutes or less!"

This delivery system has caused some debate about how Amazon will protect their drones from being stolen or tampered with, but these concerns have yet to be addressed so one must wonder what will happen when the first drone crashes, is stolen, runs out of battery, etc. I personally am not worried about my safety as much as I am about the package that I paid Amazon to deliver to me.

*Video and Information courtesy of Amazon.com Inc.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Back To The Future Day is Finally Here

By Adam Carver

As some of you reading this already know the cult-classic Back to the Future was released on July 3, 1985. It told the story of Marty McFly and Doc Brown as they traveled through time in their infamous Delorean DMC-12. The movie was praised by the masses for its Science-Fiction predictions of the then future, October 21, 2015. We can all tell that the writers thought that we would have made more progress technologically with inventions such as hover-boards and self-lacing shoes already being available to the public during the movie's interpretation of today. so just think that 30 years ago people thought that today was going to have flying cars and hover-boards (we kinda do).

An example of our current version of the hover-board by Lexus (Yes it is real, and yes it does work as you see it.):