Archive: Around Town

Ninja Turtles Movie Review: How the new version stacks up against the original

NinjaTurtlesBabesta

The Babesta Crew decided to check out the new Ninja Turtles movie to see how this generation’s version stacked up against the original that we watched as youngsters. For the most part, the major movie reviews gave the film some lousy ratings. However, the Babesta Crew begs to differ, slightly. Yes, in the grand scheme of things, the movie does have some flaws, and surely won’t be considered for best picture at the Academy Awards. But we focused on watching from the perspective of a kid, not a snooty film critic. And all-in-all, we thought the movie was pretty good, and will make for a cool outing for the little ones this month. So if looking for something cool for the kids this weekend, strap the little ones up in the dopest strollers and take them to the movies!

Let’s start with the good things! The CGI’d version of Splinter and the Turtles were definitely a huge upgrade compared to the lame “football mascot” costumed ninjas from our generation’s movie. This allowed for way more awesome fight and action scenes with spectacular martial arts exhibitions. The comparison is similar to the super lame light saber fights in the first generation of Star Wars films compared to the breathtaking ones in their new generation of movies.

The film also did a great job with the character personalities. The original Ninja Turtles that we knew were cool and funny dudes, and they were successful in keeping this intact. In fact they possibly improved on it. The turtles and the rest of the characters definitely seemed like the same “people” we remember, and maybe even a little better.

Also, the film was set in New York City. Ahh New York City, a film can never be that terrible when set in this wonderful place as you can get by just looking at all the awesome sights. And TMNT really did a great job in taking advantage of all the great scenes that the City has to offer. And lastly, the film was highly wholesome, innocent, and good natured. We don’t recall any edgy questionable content that wasn’t appropriate for children. We definitely didn’t notice any of those uncomfortable awkward movie theater moments between kids and adults.

When we get into the movie’s flaws, the huge elephant in the room was the story. It was a pretty common and uncreative journey. It was definitely your cookie cutter action movie set of events. And, they also went a little too far with their stretches of imagination. We already entered the movie expecting this, and came in with a pretty high tolerance. But even with that, some of the coincidences went way too far, to the point of eye-rolling ridiculousness.

Additionally, we felt that too much of the movie was dedicated to explaining the story. We have to cut them a break on this point however. After all, It does require a lot of time to explain how a giant Rat and four 6-foot Ninja Turtles became walking about in Manhattan. But, this did make us leave the movie hungry for more scenes that conveyed the Turtles personality, goofing around and stuff, like we remembered from our day. Fortunately, there should be plenty of room for that in the sequel!

So in Conclusion, we gave the movie a passing grade overall. The story was pretty lame and uncreative. But it provided a great visual spectacle, and the characters were awesome and likeable. We definitely wouldn’t recommend this movie for adults. But for children, it has most of the things that they look for. Oh yeah, and I’m sure the Turtles would definitely feel Babesta’s awesome fly styles! (turtle sizes not available)

-Asa Barnla

 

Street Art Scavenger Hunt

 

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Image courtesy of Saddleshoe Tours

The Babesta Fresh Crew is always on the on the prowl for the latest fun and active things to do in New York City. We’ve come through with a cool outing to put you up on,,,,, wait for it,,,,, the graffiti street art scavenger hunt with Watson Adventures teamed up with Saddleshoe Tours. Burn some calories, bond with your teammates, and educate yourself, all while learning the roots of the coolest art genre in the scene! The street art scavenger hunt is a great way to take a street art tour in NYC.

Graffiti street art is definitely emerging into the mainstream, filling art galleries and museums with artists like Banksy and Shepard Fairey earning world-wide acclaim. Earn some street cred at your next art show and be the first on your block to study the true roots of street art, in the New York City streets, the Mecca of graffiti, where it all began.

Watson Tours “brings out the best in a fascinating place—and the best in you and your teammates”. The hunts use witty, tricky questions in fast-paced games. According to Watson’s, the “hunts are like walking tours spiked with caffeine”. With Watson Adventure scavenger hunts, you don’t actually hunt for tangible items, instead you work to answer amusing questions about the fascinating places and items you discover.

Scavenger hunts have also been noted as a great activity for building team comradery and bonding. Major corporations have set up company scavenger hunts with Watson Adventures for this exact reason. Amazon.com’s founder and CEO, Jeff Bezos dropped a qoute on their site,  “I loved your witty questions and racing through the museum. I can’t think of a better way to bring people together and have fun”. Although the street art scavenger hunt is for adults only, there are plenty more the company offers for the kids to enjoy.

After your art hunting, NYC graffiti art tour adventure, equip the little ones in the dopest threads and gear designed by renowned artists like Banksy, Rebecca Raney, and many more.

-Asa Barnla

 

City Solutions: Uber Family

Dr. Alisa Baer and Uber launch UberFamily in New York CityOne of the biggest problems in the city is how to get a toddler around in a cab or car service safely and easily.  Enter, UberFamily to solve the problem. We had first heard about this revelation while it was in development from Dr. Alisa Baer, “The Car Seat Lady” who collaborated with Uber on the service.  Now a couple months in, it’s addressing a true, underserved need in the market, much to city parents’ delight. She trained and certified the highest rated UberX partner drivers on how to safely secure the car seat so you know its properly installed in the car.

Uber now offers an on-demand car seat option for a $10 surcharge (additional to the UberX rates). That’s a small price to pay for a lot of peace of mind.

Want to know how to choose your own car seat? Read more about what Dr. Alisa Baer has to say in Car Seat Conundrum. Need to compare models? Read our Friday Face offs as we compare models and pick the best features of each.

Shop safe car seats at Babesta.

Studio Visit with Rebeca Raney

Rebeca Raney of Raneytown

 

We were thrilled to be invited to a studio visit at Rebeca Raney’s this weekend. Her work is prominently displayed and for sale at Babesta – from her signature llamas to the subtle and naive black and white illustrations of sweet girls, some looking like familiar Raggedy Ann type dolls. The RISD graduate has made quite a splash on the art scene, already collaborating with Madewell for a line of product and cultivating over a million followers on Pinterest as Raneytown.

Raneytown sculpture and painting

Some of the most exciting things we got to see at the studio were her hand embroidered sculptures. Her embroidery is stunning and, having an adorable little girl herself, she invited kids & adults to touch all of her soft sculptural works. For sure, art is meant to be experienced.

She also showed a lovely alphabet book, something she did back at school many years ago, with an illustration standing for each letter. With K for kissing and W for whisper and ephemeral illustrations of ghosts and zephyrs, it’s a lovely compilation of her works in black and white, some with color. Many had stood the test of time, shy of one she said she’d never do again. “The owl,” she notes, adding that the market had overdone the wise forest creature.

View more art at Babesta or visit Raney’s installation at Babesta Cribz, 56 Warren Street, NYC 646 290 5508. Inquire about available works.

Read more about Raney’s Xtreme Playdate at Babesta and view her works.

Time to Make Music! Fete de la Musique

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Get out your instruments New York, it’s Fete de la Musique! Tomorrow, June 21, New Yorkers, Parisians and music lovers in many other cities will be celebrating the annual event, started in France in 1982 by the French Ministry for Culture. Today, the summer holiday takes place in over 100 countries. There will be free concerts in Central Park, part of the Summer Stage, including M and Emilie Simon. Admission is first come first served ad free! 

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Don’t know M & Emilie Simon? Check out their music here!

1-       By Mathieu Chedid “ Je Dis Aime

2-       By Mathieu Chedid “ La Seine

3-      By Emilie Simon “Dreamland

4-      By Mathieu Chedid “Mojo

5-      By Emilie Simon “Fleur de Saison

Weekend Pick: Kara Walker The Subtlety at Domino Sugar Factory

kara walker the subtletyLast weekend we hit this amazing large scale art installation by Kara Walker, best known for her silhouette art, and had to share. It smells as sweet as sugar and is as impressive as it is a moving commentary on race. You do have to sign a release to go in and the queue can be a bit long (but moves fast and there are italian ices to keep things cool) — but you will certainly be taken by the message behind the art, the scale, as well as bold shapes and confections used that interact with the environment, melting and morphing daily until July 6 when it closes.

kara walker exhibit dsfkara walker exhibit

After that the well positioned Sugar Factory is said to be demolished to make way for condos.

Check out the video here: http://creativetime.org/projects/karawalker/

 

In the Fold: Origami Art this summer at Cooper Union

Origami at Cooper UnionIn vogue this summer: Origami! Cooper Union, the site of the first origami exhibit in the U.S. 55 years ago, is featuring Surface to Structure: Folded Forms, an exhibition of 120 works of art by 80 origami artists, curated by Uyen Nguyen. We’re excited.

Here’s one to whet the appetite! Running June 19-July 4. Nguyen is currently raising funds on Indiegogo to cover shipping and exhibition expenses for this free presentation.

 

 

Our Tribeca Film Festival Inspiration!

tribeca film festivalWe’re inspired by the movies this week as the area is bustling with Tribeca Film Festival activities! Meet ya at the movies!

1. Limo by Oeuf NYC, for easy transport to premieres! 2. Hollywood ready starlet jumpsuit  by NuNuNu 3. Paparazzi repellants by Sons + Daughters 4. T-shirt homage to 3-D flicks by Milk on the Rocks 5. Darth Vader & Son book 6. Saturday Night Fever goes feline with La Miniatura.

Babesta will be at the Family Festival this Saturday! Be sure to stop by and say hi on Greenwich Street!

 

Over Easy? The Fabrege Big Egg Hunt is on til April 17th.

wheres waldo egg

Here’s a great weekend pick! Download the app and hit the city – all five boroughs to find the artist decorated eggs ‘hidden’ all over. Just check in to “find” them – there are 275 giant eggs out there!  It’s the first year this event has been held in New York – let’s show ‘em how it’s done. The egg-stravaganza sponsored by uber egg purveyor Fabrege features eggs by the likes of Ralph Lauren, Zaha Hadid and Julian Schnabel. When it’s all said & done the eggs will be  auctioned off at Sotheby’s, with proceeds going to  Elephant Family and Studio in a School. Happy hunting!

pictured: Egg designed by Martin Handford, creator of Where’s Waldo. (AP Photo/HL Group, Maverick Inman) The Associated Press

Join us at the Tribeca Family Festival

Screen Shot 2014-04-05 at 12.29.37 PMMark your calendars for April 26 is this year’s family festival in Tribeca. This amazing outdoor fair features a wide array of free activities and performances, as well as lots of food & wares from the local community. We’ve been going for nearly seven years, and it never fails to be an awesome day!

Some highlights this year include a film making experience with  Tribeca Studios backlot where you get to perform in front of a green screen,  a live chef demonstration from a local restaurant, kite flying, video game playing in the Games for Change Public Arcade, and my personal favorite, making life-size bubbles in the Bubble Garden. There are tons more arts & crafts and more going on all day. There are also free screenings!

We can’t wait to see you there! We’ll be somewhere along Greenwich street so please pop in and say hi! We’ll be tweeting & instagraming throughout the day and we’re hoping to have some special new things, not seen in store yet, just for our booth!