Most animated features are created with the assumption that the young viewers watching the film won’t actually look for truths, check the math, or otherwise deconstruct the facts presented in the movie looking for absolutes. The creators know there will be incongruities in every film but don’t bother fixing it when the viewers don’t really seem to care.
But an artist named Xibira proved she cares enough to do the math behind a little Disney film called Beauty and the Beast, and the results are shocking.
For those who thought Weird Al Yankovic was just a singer/songwriter of parodies, take note: this man is multitalented. He happens to be able to perform magic tricks while simultaneously cooking up something wholesome. Another Festivus miracle! -Via Tastefully Offensive
It gets very cold in Scotland in December. Cold enough for ice pancakes! These strange discs of ice were seen on the River Dee at Lummels Pool in Aberdeenshire.
River Dee Team biologist Jamie Urquhart said it was thought foam floating about on the water started to freeze and bump together, forming the discs.
The phenomenon can be found in rivers and in the open sea.
Mr Urquhart, who found and photographed the "pancakes", said: "What we think happened is this - foam floating about on the water started to freeze, probably at night.
"Bits of frozen foam got pushed around in the eddy, and in the ensuing collisions became roughly circular."
There is more to the story of how the discs got their peculiar shape over several days. We could observe the process to make sure, but who wants to stay up all night outside when it’s cold enough for running water to freeze? See more pictures at BBC News.
Thirteen dogs and a cat gather 'round a holiday table and do what everyone does these days while gathered at a table. There are friendly exchanges, drinking of spirits, eating off their own plates and eating off of others' plates. A diva touches up her makeup and tech-dependent souls check their email. One sticky-fingered guest even nabs some silverware!
The video stars animals from the Humane Society of Utah; some are available for adoption. A video on the making of this one is available here.
If you’ve been watching The Simpsons from the very beginning then you know they’ve come a long way from their early days, when they were fresh from The Tracey Ullman Show and lookin’ strange, but can you believe they just celebrated their 25th anniversary?
December 17, 1989 was the day an animated TV legend was born- The Simpsons are now officially the longest running scripted prime time series on television, and creator Matt Groening's life is hell no longer.
The Simpsons are named after Matt's family members, namely his father Homer, his mother Margaret (who was a Wiggum before she became a Groening), and sisters Lisa and Margaret (Maggie), but decided the character based on young Matt should be named Bart. Matt probably didn't want to be associated with Bart's bad deeds, especially if his family tuned in to the show!
You bet I snagged this video for you as soon as I saw who did it. CGP Grey takes an entire library of Tolkien writings about Middle-Earth and explains that universe in four minutes, or at least where the different types of characters come from. All this happened in that universe long before the rings appeared, which also happened before the events of The Hobbit or The Lord of the Rings trilogy, so Grey plans to tackle that part in an upcoming video. There’s a discussion thread about the video here. -via Viral Viral Videos
Jesus Diaz of Gizmodo helpfully lists the components. From top to bottom are the characters of Asterix, Calvin, Donald Duck, Captain Haddock, Batman, Heimo Vesa, Corto Maltese, Moomintroll, Garfield, and Lucy. From left to right, you see the styles of Albert Uderzo, Bill Watterson, Walt Disney, Hergé, Neal Adams, Perrti Jarla, Hugo Pratt, Lars Jansson, Jim Davis, and Charles Schulz.
He's a pie headed man with a mission, an old school guy with lots of game who travelled back in time to save the video game world from the ultimate kill screen. When Doctor Arcade introduced him to the pacmobile he thought the Doc was a bit of a kook, but when he discovered that round yellow car could use power pellets to travel back in time his pie slice mouth split into a wide smile. He started grabbing up as many pellets as he could, but then Pinky caught on to his plan and gathered her ghostly gang for an old fashioned pac attack...
Add some old school game to your geeky wardrobe with this Pac To The Future t-shirt by Retro Review, and send your fellow pac-fans on a fun trip back in time!
[Ed. note: this post is in honor of Spielberg's 68th birthday today.]
You know him as the director who brought us Jaws, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Jurassic Park, Schindler's List, and Saving Private Ryan, among many other films. But there’s probably a lot that you didn’t know about Steven Spielberg. In honor of the filmmaker's 68th birthday today, let's learn some more about him.
* The first movie Steven Spielberg ever saw was The Greatest Show on Earth (1953).
* He has never had a cup of coffee in his entire life. Steven has never liked the smell of coffee and has never had the desire to try it.
* Steven has one of the largest gun collections on the East Coast. He shoots, but only privately.
* His all-time favorite cartoon character is Daffy Duck.
* He cast his cocker spaniel, Elmer, in several of his films, including Close Encounters of the Third Kind, 1941, The Sugarland Express, and Jaws.
* During the filming of a 1969 episode of Night Gallery, Steven gave Joan Crawford the gift of a single red rose in a Pepsi bottle. During a conversation with a reporter for the Detroit Free Press, Joan pointed to Steven and said, “Go interview that kid because he's going to be the biggest director of all-time.” She and Steven remained good friends until her death in 1977.
Your mother probably told you you’d catch your death of cold if you went outside without an adequate winter coat. She probably also said, “I told you so” when you caught a cold, whether it was soon after or the next month. I still find myself arguing that cold temperatures don’t cause the common cold or the flu, but those I argue with will never change their minds. Aaron Carroll of Healthcare Triage gives us the science behind these old myths about cold weather and your health. -via Laughing Squid
Disney's animation studios stay on the technological cutting edge with the assistance of company-operated research laboratories. One team of Disney researchers developed a means to capture the individual shape of human eyes in rich detail, including the deformation that the eyes experience as the pupils dilate.
(Image of 9 human irises by Disney Research)
The research, which you can see summarized in the video below, has led to the development of precise eye deformation simulation programs. Animators can use these to automatically generate pupil dilation that results from changing light conditions in cartoon settings.
They say that living well is the best revenge. However, when you suddenly have power over those who tormented you in your youth, it’s hard to resist the temptation for a little payback. Unfortunately, it turned out to be difficult to get all those toys delivered by Christmas morning that year. This is the latest comic from John McNamee at Pie Comic.
The actual name of this video is Autonomous Christmas Lab 2014, but that’s no fun. The folks at Autonomous Systems Lab, a part of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, programmed robots, drones, and maybe even a few Roombas to dance in their holiday finery for your entertainment. It’s weird but festive. -via The Daily Dot
Designers at Joint London decided to offer Santa a new, hip wardrobe. Their series "Designer x Santa" outfits the big guy with designer-inspired clothing. While St. Nick is looking sharp, I hope he warns the public of any costume changes before he goes sliding down chimneys. Better safe than sorry, Santa!
Prints of stylin' Santa are available for download as Christmas cards here. See the rest of Santa's new wardrobehere.
I had a ploopsie just the other day, when I called in the guy who sold me a washing machine that didn’t work. It worked just fine as soon as he arrived. I joked that it must have missed his company. And I well remember a few instances of filmcholy when I was a kid. These are words we should have to convey those exact situations, conceived by the guys at Doghouse Diaries.
The toolbox in your closet is more than a way to injure yourself and make a household problem worse. It's also a great way to make music. The group Alpin Drums demonstrates this. While dressed in stereotypical Bavarian folk costumes, the members whack toolbox lids in a perfectly orchestrated and practiced performance.
’Tis the season to fold and cut paper snowflakes- but they don’t have to look like just any old snowflakes. Thew physics magazine Symmetry has patterns for cutting out snowflakes in the images of Nobel Prize-winning physicists Albert Einstein, Marie Curie, and Erwin Schrödinger (with a cat). Just download their templates, along with handy instructions.
Practice makes perfect, but remember, no two snowflakes are supposed to be alike anyway.
DeviantART member CatsFeltFeelings creates highly realistic dolls and figures using needle felting, such as this large head of actor Benedict Cumberbatch in the titular role from the TV show Sherlock. She plans to build a body with it, including Holmes's trademark coat, scarf, and hat.
The latest in the People Are Awesome series has clips from videos uploaded in 2014. These people are doing awesome things, dangerous things, things that made me cringe. I’m a Mom, after all. Don’t try this at home. Well, try watching the video. No one gets hurt in it, although there were probably lots of injuries getting to point of perfection. -via Tastefully Offensive
Check out more amazing talents over at our Mad Skills blog
They're not your average teenage ninjas, in fact nobody's really sure if they're teenagers at all, but these furry little savages definitely know how to kick some Imperial butt! When dark forces march in trying to take over their beloved forest moon the Ninja Savages assemble and show those helmet headed baddies how much power can be packed into a short, and really hairy, body. They're not mutants, teenagers or turtles, but these four ninjas totally know the meaning of cowabunga!
Add some furry sci-fi adventure to your geeky wardrobe with this The Ninja Savages t-shirt by Andriu, and show the world you don't have to have a half shell to be a hero!
Husband and wife team Timothy and Aurelia Sanders, working under the company name Charley Chartwell, designed this blast from the past: a poster of 1980s slang. Anyone who has lived through the 1980s should be familiar with most of these expressions, many of which ended up being written into the pop culture of the time by way of songs, movies, television and books.
The television show Futurama offered us a glimpse into a glorious future--a technological wonderland--brought to us by Hypnotoad, all glory to Him. We experience it as Fry who, like us, adjusts to new machines and products previously only imagined.
Among the inventions on Futurama, Bachelor Chow is the one that I find most appealing. It's like dog food for humans. Just pour some in a bowl, add water, and eat. There's no need for any cooking and barely any need for cleanup. It would save so much time to have instant, cheap food.
Who opened the first roadside Christmas tree stand? Where did that Christmas pickle thing come from? Who was the real-life inspiration for the character of the Grinch? In this week’s mental_floss List Show, John Green gets to the bottom of how some of our Christmas traditions began. I was surprised to find that mistletoe isn’t even a native plant in America! But nothing compares to the very last bit of trivia -how our artificial Christmas trees got their particular form.
What would Little Red Riding Hood and the Little Mermaid look like if drawn in the manga style of modern East Asia? Na Young Wu, a Korean artist, shows us. Her Twitter feed offers us refreshingly different takes on these Western folktale characters.
This short film is about a man who builds boats by hand in the small town of Kjerringøy, Norway, north of the Arctic Circle where you don’t see the sun in winter. Ulf Mikalsen lives a particularly simple yet awesome life, sailing the fjords amidst breathtaking scenery, living happily among family and friends, and singing songs. And for a 62-year-old man, he looks pretty good skinny dipping.
We also know that he likes to speak in rhymes, and that the illustrations by Coe Steinwart really brought the character to life, so much so that people wished to bring a little elf home to their shelf, thus beginning the Elf on the Shelf doll craze:
Fans of the book really should have thought twice before wishing that sneaky little guy would come to life, and subsequently letting him into their homes, because that little elf has some dark secrets which need to come to light:
The Elf on the Shelf wasn't always on the Naughty list- he started out as quite the do-gooder and nice guy, but he grew bored of sitting on shelves and working for The Man so he started acting out against his host families:
Fame went straight to his head, but with fame comes a feeling of isolation from the rest of the toys. The Elf began to reevaluate his role in the Christmastime world, and soon he had set his sights on spreading chaos and mischief around instead of gifts and cheer:
CineFix gave their 8-bit Cinema treatment to the classic A Christmas Story. Eight-bit Ralphie runs around his little Indiana town scheming about how to get the message out regarding the Christmas present he so dearly wants: an official Red Ryder, carbine action, two-hundred shot range model air rifle. -Via Laughing Squid
Madeline Island is one of the Apostle Islands in Lake Superior. There's regular ferry service to it from Bayfield, Wisconsin. But when the lake freezes, residents use this type of vehicle to travel to and from the island. It's called an "ice angel" or "windsled."
Before you go see the final film of the Hobbit trilogy, The Battle of the Five Armies, take a look back at the previous film with Screen Junkies. Here’s their Honest Trailer take on the second movie of Peter Jackson’s opus, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. After watching this video, you might even think twice about fighting the theater lines for the opening of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies today. After all, it will probably be available in multiple showings over the next few weeks. -via Geeks Are Sexy