The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams


The Velveteen Rabbit Book Cover

Blog 2 Info

Genre:  Fantasy / Toys / Drama

Year Published:  1985

Year Read: 2010

Series: Storybook Classics

Publisher: Rabbit Ears Books

Blog 1 Introduction logo

“The Velveteen Rabbit” is Rabbit Ears’ first classic story that is based off of Margery Williams’ popular tale and it is about how a toy rabbit learns the true meaning of being real. With Meryl Streep’s tender narration, George Winston’s soft music and David Jorgensen’s beautiful illustrations, “The Velveteen Rabbit” is an instant classic that children will watch over and over again.

Blog 4 Pros

What made this video truly memorable was Meryl Streep’s tender and soothing narration. Meryl Streep gives the story a very subtle mood by narrating in a graceful and soft-spoken tone that many children will be mesmerized by her narration. Meryl Streep has also done a brilliant job at expressing the various emotions that each of the characters experience throughout the story. The scene where I think that Meryl Streep’s narration stood out the most was the scene where the real rabbits tell the Velveteen Rabbit that he is not real and the Velveteen Rabbit begins to cry and Meryl Streep actually sounds like she is about to cry in this scene which truly brought out the realism of the situation in this scene. George Winston’s piano solo music is extremely beautiful and engaging, as his music is both happy and sorrowful, depending on the scene. The scene where I think that George Winston’s musical abilities truly shine was the scene where one of the real rabbits was dancing in front of the Velveteen Rabbit and George Winston plays the piano in such a dramatic and fast paced tone that I found myself loving every second of that scene. The video’s true highlight is David Jorgensen’s illustrations as they are extremely beautiful and captivating. David Jorgensen makes all the characters look extremely realistic, which gives the story a sense of realism and the images that stood out the most to me were the images of the real rabbits, as they look realistic and beautiful.

Blog 6 Overall

“The Velveteen Rabbit” is a beautiful story about knowing the importance of true love and children will easily relate to this story as they will feel sympathy for the Velveteen Rabbit trying to find the true meaning of being real. I would recommend this book to children ages five and up since small children might be upset at the fact that the Velveteen Rabbit feels upset when he realizes he is not like the other real rabbits.

Blog 7 Awards

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5 stars

 

Also reviewed at: Rabbit Ears Book Blog

The Elephant’s Child by Rudyard Kipling


The Elephant's Child (1986)

Blog 2 Info

Genre: Animal / Drama / Humor

Year Published: 1986

Year Read: 2007

Series: Storybook Classics

Publisher: Rabbit Ears Books

Blog 1 Introduction logo

“The Elephant’s Child” is the first “Just so” story introduced in the Rabbit Ears Storybook Classics series and is easily one of Rabbit Ears’ finest videos since it won a Grammy Award in the late 80s. Jack Nicholson’s silky narration, along with Bobby McFerrin’s harmonic music and Tim Raglin’s colorful illustrations makes “The Elephant’s Child” a worthwhile treat for the whole family to enjoy.

Blog 4 Pros

Jack Nicholson’s narration is extremely silk and sarcastic as he narrates an Elephant’s Child’s efforts to find out what the crocodile has for dinner. Jack Nicholson’s best vocal performance would have to be for the Elephant’s Child and the Bi-Colored-Python-Rock Snake. With the Elephant’s Child, Jack Nicholson uses a high pitched and childlike voice to reinforce the adolescence of the Elephant’s Child’s nature and with the Bi-Colored-Python-Rock-Snake, Jack Nicholson makes a snake sound each time he reaches a word that contains the s-syllable. Bobby McFerrin’s music is lovely as he makes harmonic sounds using his voice and his ability to create various sounds from his mouth to make music. Bobby McFerrin’s music creates a mesmerizing atmosphere to the story as his voice sounds like it is so far off the distance. Tim Raglin’s illustrations are brilliant and colorful, especially of the forest where the Elephant’s Child lives in as the trees are green and pink. The illustrations that stood out the most was the illustration of the Elephant’s Child having no trunk as his nose looks like a little stub on his face.

The Elephant's Child

Blog 5 Cons

Parents should know that there is quite a bit of violence on this video, mainly of the Elephant’s Child being spanked throughout the video. There is also a bit of violence when the Elephant’s Child encounters the crocodile, but you probably can guess what is going to happen without me spoiling the ending for you. Parents should reassure their children that violence is not always the answer to solve your problems and you should not spank your child just because he or she is curious about the world. Just try to explain to your child about the trials of the world in terms simple enough for your child to understand.

Blog 6 Overall

The Elephant’s Child” is a great piece of work from Rabbit Ears Productions and it surely has enough humor and action that will satisfy any child for many years to come. I would recommend this video to children ages eight and up due to some advanced vocabulary that younger children might not understand and some violence that might worry some small children.

Blog 7 Awards

https://i2.wp.com/etc-mysitemyway.s3.amazonaws.com/icons/legacy-previews/icons/blue-chrome-rain-icons-symbols-shapes/017784-blue-chrome-rain-icon-symbols-shapes-shapes-diamond.png1986 New York International Film and TV Festival – Finalist Certificate

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5 stars

 

Also reviewed at: Rabbit Ears Book Blog

Pecos Bill by Brian Gleeson


Pecos Bill (1988)Blog 2 Info

Genre: Western / Humor / Adventure / Tall Tale

Year Published: 1988

Year Read: 2007

Series: Storybook Classics

Publisher: Rabbit Ears Books

Blog 1 Introduction logo

In the 80’s Rabbit Ears had made their trademark as one of the most popular series for children. “Pecos Bill” is no exception as this story won numerous Grammy Awards. With Robin Williams’ narration, Tim Raglin’s drawings, and Ry Cooder’s music, “Pecos Bill” is surely a story you will want to watch over and over again.

Blog 4 Pros

Robin Williams’ narration, Ry Cooder’s music and Tim Raglin’s illustrations are the true highlights of this story. First off, Robin Williams narrates with high-energy and a cowboy accent to boot. Whenever, Pecos Bill goes through any peril, Robin Williams is loud and excited about the situation as if he was there when Bill performed these spectacular acts. Next on the list is Ry Cooder’s country music. Ry Cooder’s solo guitar performance has provided the perfect mood for the story, going from a light and happy tune highlighting Pecos Bill’s early adventures to dark and intense when Pecos Bill goes against the cyclone, which Cooder’s music may have foreshadowed Pecos Bill’s disappearance from Texas in this scene. Finally, Tim Raglin’s colorful illustrations have greatly influence the mood of this story. Raglin’s drawings are colorful and rich as he greatly details the plains and the cyclone in fluent colors. Raglin also illustrates Pecos Bill’s life in a humorous way, such as, the scene where Pecos Bill is shown throwing around the rattlesnake like a lasso. Tim Raglin’s highlighted illustration was of Pecos Bill himself, as Pecos Bill is drawn with white, fluffy pants, a polka-dotted handkerchief, and suave red hair that make him have the appearance of a true hero.

Blog 6 Overall

“Pecos Bill” was considered to be Rabbit Ears finest half-hour story. Well, I think that they were right about that. “Pecos Bill” has everything that you would expect from a natural cowboy movie. The story has loads of adventure, comedy, romance, and suspense and each scene describing these genres is greatly enhanced by the narration, drawings and illustrations. “Pecos Bill” is loads of laughs and shocks and is a perfect film for the entire family.

Blog 7 Awardshttps://i2.wp.com/etc-mysitemyway.s3.amazonaws.com/icons/legacy-previews/icons/blue-chrome-rain-icons-symbols-shapes/017784-blue-chrome-rain-icon-symbols-shapes-shapes-diamond.png1988 Grammy Award – Best Recording for Children

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5 stars

 

Also reviewed at:  Rabbit Ears Book Blog

The Fool and the Flying Ship by Eric Metaxas


 

The Fool and the Flying Ship (1991)

Blog 2 Info

Genre: Surreal / Russia / Folktale / Traveling / Royalty

Year Published: 1991

Year Read: 1993

Series: We All Have Tales

Publisher: Rabbit Ears Books

Blog 1 Introduction logo

Rabbit Ears have created a wonderful series called We All Have Tales. The series had released a number of wonderful stories from around the world, but The Fool and the Flying Ship remained as my all-time favorite Rabbit Ears story. This story is based on Arthur Ransome’s classic Russian folktale, “The Fool of the World and the Flying Ship.” Of course, this version is funnier and more modern than the original Russian tale, thanks to the Russian voice talents of Robin Williams.

Blog 4 Pros

This is my most favorite story from the Rabbit Ears series because it is extremely funny, witty, and entertaining at the same time. Eric Metaxas’s writing is full of wit and humor and jokes that will have anyone laughing for a long time. My favorite part of the dialogue from this story was when the servant told the Tsar that there were peasants at the palace, but the Tsar thought that the servant was talking about pheasants. Robin Williams provided the voices for all the characters in the story in different Russian accents for each character, providing comedy relief from all characters. Also, I love the way how Henrik Drescher, the illustrator of this story, draws his characters with long and stringy limbs and weird attachments on their bodies, such as the Runner’s antlers on his head and the Sharpshooter’s popped out eyes.  The Klezmer Conservatory Band’s wacky European music is full of jazz and folk-like music that gives The Fool and the Flying Ship a very wacky and over-the-top feel to the story.

Blog 5 Cons

Parents should know that The Fool and the Flying Ship may be aimed at older kids and adults because the jokes in this story may not get through the younger audience. Some of the jokes, such as the one where the Sharpshooter talks about putting the flea, who had a bad cold, out of his misery and the Fool replies that it is the flea’s wife’s snoring that causes the flea to have a bad cold. The Sharpshooter than replies that the Flea’s wife is who he is aiming at. Many children may not get that the Sharpshooter is going to shoot the flea’s wife, although this joke is done very delicately and the Sharpshooter is never seen shooting the flea’s wife.

Blog 6 Overall

I think this story is going to be a favorite among both the adult audience and the younger audience for all time because of the story’s good humor and creative characters.

Blog 7 Awards

https://i2.wp.com/etc-mysitemyway.s3.amazonaws.com/icons/legacy-previews/icons/blue-chrome-rain-icons-symbols-shapes/017784-blue-chrome-rain-icon-symbols-shapes-shapes-diamond.png 1991 The New York Festivals – Finalist

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6 stars

 

Also reviewed at: Rabbit Ears Book Blog

 

Rabbit Ears Productions Awards Ceremony!


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Hello! This is a little awards ceremony for the stories from Rabbit Ears Productions and everyone is free to come and vote here! Here are the categories and the stories that fit with these categories:

Best Actor

Danny Glover (How the Leopard Got His Spots, Brer Rabbit and the Wonderful Tar Baby, and Brer Rabbit and Boss Lion)

Robin Williams (The Fool and the Flying Ship and Pecos Bill)

Jack Nicholson (The Elephant’s Child, How the Camel Got His Hump, How the Rhinoceros Got His Skin)

Denzel Washington (John Henry and Anansi)

Raul Julia (The Monkey People)

Max Von Sydow (East of the Sun West of the Moon)

Morgan Freeman (Follow the Drinking Gourd and The Savior is Born)

 

 

Best Actress

Meryl Streep (The Velveteen Rabbit, The Tailor of Gloucester, The Tale of Peter Rabbit, The Tale of Mr. Jeremy Fisher, and The Night before Christmas)

 

Holly Hunter (The Three Billy Goats Gruff and the Three Little Pigs)

Whoopi Goldberg (Koi and the Kola Nuts)

Tracey Ullman (Puss in Boots)

Glenn Close (The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and The Emperor and the Nightingale)

Meg Ryan (Red Riding Hood and Goldilocks)

Kelly McGillis (Thumbelina and Noah and the Ark)

 

 

Best Illustrator

Robert Van Nutt (The Emperor and the Nightingale, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, The Firebird, The Savior is Born)

 

David Jorgensen (The Tale of Peter Rabbit, The Tale of Mr. Jeremy Fisher, The Velveteen Rabbit, The Three Little Pigs and The Three Billy Goats Gruff)

Henrik Drescher (Brer Rabbit and the Wonderful Tar Baby and The Fool and the Flying Ship)

Tim Raglin (Pecos Bill, The Elephant’s Child, How the Camel Got His Hump and How the Rhinoceros Got His Skin)

David Johnson (The Bremen Town Musicians, The Boy Who Drew Cats and Thumbelina)

Diana Bryan (The Fisherman and his Wife and The Monkey People)

Rick Meyerowitz (Rip Van Winkle and Paul Bunyan)

 

Best Musician

B.B. King (John Henry)

 

Bobby McFerrin (The Elephant’s Child, How the Rhinoceros Got His Skin and How the Camel Got His Hump)

Dr. John (Brer Rabbit and Boss Lion)

Taj Mahal (Brer Rabbit and the Wonderful Tar Baby and Follow the Drinking Gourd)

Lee Ritenour (The Monkey People)

Art Lande (Red Riding Hood, Goldilocks, The Three Billy Goats Gruff and the Three Little Pigs)

Lyle Mays (The Tale of Peter Rabbit, The Tale of Mr. Jeremy Fisher and East of the Sun West of the Moon)

 

 

Best Writing

Eric Metaxas (The Fool and the Flying Ship)

 

Brian Gleeson (Pecos Bill)

Rudyard Kipling (How the Camel Got His Hump and How the Rhinoceros Got His Skin)

Margery Williams (The Velveteen Rabbit)

Beatrix Potter (The Tale of Peter Rabbit)

Bernardine Connelly (Follow the Drinking Gourd)

Brad Kessler (John Henry)

 

 

Best Ending Music

Paul Bunyan

 

The Tale of Peter Rabbit

Brer Rabbit and Boss Lion

The Monkey People

Goldilocks

The Talking Eggs

 

 

Most Bizarre Illustrations

The Fool and the Flying Ship

 

Brer Rabbit and the Wonderful Tar Baby

The Breman Town Musicians

 

 

Saddest Scene

The Velveteen Rabbit about to be burned from “The Velveteen Rabbit”

John Henry’s death from “John Henry”

Pecos Bill’s disappearance in “Pecos Bill”

 

 

Scariest Scene

Icabod Crane being chased by the Headless Horseman from “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow”

 

The storm hitting the countryside from “The Fisherman and his Wife”

The folks from Brer Village being eaten by Boss Lion from “Brer Rabbit and Boss Lion”

Rumpelstiltskin taking off his mask and showing his skeletal face from “Rumpelstiltskin”

 

 

Most Amazing Scene

Pecos Bill riding the Cyclone from “Pecos Bill”

 

The Headless Horseman chasing Icabod from “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow”

Brer Rabbit tricking Boss Lion to fall in the well from “Brer Rabbit and Boss Lion”

The Puffer pulling the land apart in “The Fool and the Flying Ship”

The girl riding with the North Wind in “East of the Sun West of the Moon”

 

Most Hilarious Story

The Fool and the Flying Ship

 

The Three Billy Goats Gruff and the Three Little Pigs

Pecos Bill

Puss in Boots

Anansi

Jack and the Beanstalk

 

Most Heartwarming Story

The Velveteen Rabbit

 

East of the Sun West of the Moon

A Gingerbread Christmas

The Night Before Christmas

Thumbelina

The Firebird

 

 

Most Dramatic Story

East of the Sun West of the Moon

 

Follow the Drinking Gourd

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

Rumpelstiltskin

Brer Rabbit and Boss Lion

 

 

Most Romantic Story

East of the Sun West of the Moon

 

The Firebird

Thumbelina

 

Scariest Story

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

The Boy Who Drew Cats

The Fisherman and his Wife

 

Best Male Character

Pecos Bill from “Pecos Bill”

 

John Henry from “John Henry”

Brer Rabbit from “Brer Rabbit and Boss Lion”

The Fool from “The Fool and the Flying Ship”

Stormalong from “Stormalong”

Koi from “Koi and the Kola Nuts”

Paul Bunyan from “Paul Bunyan”

 

 

Best Female Character

Una from “Finn McCoul”

 

The Girl from “East of the Sun West of the Moon”

Princess Scargo from “Princess Scargo and the Birthday Pumpkin”

Anne Oakley from “Anne Oakley”

The Miller’s Daughter from “Rumpelstiltskin”

Sacajawea from “The Song of Sacajawea”

Mary from “Follow the Drinking Gourd”

 

 

Best Storybook Classics Story

Pecos Bill

 

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

The Emperor and the Nightingale

How the Rhinoceros Got His Skin and How the Camel Got His Hump

The Elephant’s Child

The Velveteen Rabbit

The Steadfast Tin Soldier

The Fisherman and his Wife

Paul Bunyan

The Three Billy Goats Gruff and The Three Little Pigs

 

 

Best We All Have Tales Story

The Fool and the Flying Ship

 

East of the Sun West of the Moon

Anansi

East of the Sun West of the Moon

Jack and the Beanstalk

King Midas and the Golden Touch

Koi and the Kola Nuts

Finn McCoul

Puss in Boots

Rumpelstiltskin

 

 

Best American Heroes and Legends Story

John Henry

Brer Rabbit and Boss Lion

Follow the Drinking Gourd

Davy Crockett

Anne Oakley

The Song of Sacajawea

Princess Scargo and the Birthday Pumpkin

Mose the Fireman

Rip Van Winkle

Stormalong

 

 

Worst Story

Depends on you

 

Story you like to make into a TV series

Depends on you

 

Best Story Overall

Pecos Bill

 

The Velveteen Rabbit

East of the Sun West of the Moon

John Henry

How the Rhinoceros Got His Skin and How the Camel Got His Hump

The Fool and the Flying Ship

Brer Rabbit and Boss Lion

Follow the Drinking Gourd

The Three Billy Goats Gruff and The Three Little Pigs

The Tale of Mr. Jeremy Fisher and the Tale of Peter Rabbit

 

RULES:

:)You do not have to choose the stories from this list. These stories are just some suggestions for each category and you can list the stories that you remember that were your favorites.

:)Choose only ONE winner for each category and then list ONE runner up for each category.  The runner ups will be mentioned in the honorable mentions on the video.

:)This will be featured on the “Rabbit Ears Productions Awards Ceremony” Video, so look onto this site and YouTube for the news!

:)Have fun!!!

 

Ravi Shankar dies at 92.


ravishankar_wide-5b8089ad5a8d5358ac0972ddeb08a945c5a43951-s6-c30

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hello everyone.  Very sad news today as famed musician Ravi Shankar, who also provided the music for The Tiger and the Brahmin many years ago, had died at the age of 92 on December 11, 2012.  May he rest in peace as being one of the most inspirational musicians around the world.

http://www.cnn.com/2012/12/12/showbiz/california-ravi-shankar-obit/index.html

 

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