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Helium Tea
Octopus Project's balloons go up, up, and away.
DAILY Music  August 13, 2007, by Austin Powell


Oscar-Nominated Short Films 2014: Live Action
Short films come in nice packages.
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Film Review  February 7, 2014, by Marc Savlov
"...Denmark’s entry, “Helium,” directed by Anders Walter, makes the most of emo Oscar bait with a fantastical deathbed storytime initiated by a hospital janitor (Casper Crump) and an ailing 10-year-old named Alfred (Pelle Falk Krusbæk). The only film in the program that features extensive CGI animation, it draws much of its afterlife imagery from Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s The Little Prince and Winsor McCay’s early 20th century comic strip Little Nemo..."

Somebody Up There Likes Me
Bob Byington's filmed-in-Austin, indie comedy takes place over decades as a guy wanders through life with (scene-stealing) coaching from his best friend, played by Nick Offerman.
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Film Review  April 5, 2013, by Leah Churner
"...Offerman is a scene-stealer, and we can expect to see him in a lot more movies from now on. It doesn't matter what he's doing – sucking helium, misusing words, driving a golf cart, standing still – he kills..."

Alone in the Dark
There's a certain majesty to German director Boll's style of filmmaking: a freedom from art, talent, skill of any formal kind, and the sheer pigheadedness to keep going at any cost.

Film Review  February 4, 2005, by Marc Savlov
"...It's like getting jabbed repeatedly in the cornea with a rusty diaper pin while being forced to listen to the most bombastically atrocious nu-Euro-metal ever recorded as Christian Slater completely tanks his career for the second time (the first time, of course, was 1992's Kuffs). Helium ’n' Marlboro-voiced blondeshell Tara Reid as a scientist? Why not? If Boll can continue to have a career in the wake of House of the Dead, well, all bets are off..."

Danny Deckchair
Aussie import is sweet but as emotionally ethereal as a Splenda meringue.
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Film Review  August 27, 2004, by Marc Savlov
"...Still and all, it’s difficult to fault a film these days for being too good-natured. Danny Deckchair, which tells the improbable tale of a Sydney-based concrete ’n’ foundations man (Ifans in the title role) who, during the course of an inebriated backyard party, ties a bunch of helium balloons to his aluminum deck chair and sails into the sky only to touch down far away in the back yard of a small-town police officer (Otto), with whom he promptly falls in love..."

Mobile Suit Gundam: Char's Counterattack
Gundam toy animé.

Film Review  April 16, 2004, by Marc Savlov
"...His "superflat" theory of neo-animé-inflected art might be just the thing to shake up this moribund genre – at the very least the characters would have some terrific Louis Vuitton handbags.) If, however, you’re unfamiliar with the world of Gundam and you’re seeking the next Akira, or even the next Dirty Pair, you’d be better off looking elsewhere. With its overreliance on oddly edited action sequences that seem to drag on for ages and the inclusion of a gaggle of annoying, helium-voiced characters not in the original series (not that we recall, anyhow), this is a bubblegum crisis of a different flavor..."

Pokémon 4ever
Thank goodness there's a Miyazaki film opening simultaneously. It offsets the shrill siren song of kid-lite marketing that heralds the arrival of -- gasp! choke! -- the fourth feature-length Pokémon...
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Film Review  October 11, 2002, by Marc Savlov
"...While Ash and his pals struggle to help their buddy, an evil Pokémon master attempts to capture the Celebi and thereby rule the world. Sadly, the world of Pokémon is chock full of bad, bad, bad animation and helium-voiced youths so patently annoying that an animated, all-singing, all-dancing, all-talking ducks version of The Sorrow and the Pity begins to seem strangely appealing..."

The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland
It seems blasphemous to say anything bad about the Sesame Street gang. I have visions of waking one morning to find an irate Gonzo perched on my chest, his fuzzy,...
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Film Review  October 8, 1999, by Marc Savlov
"...At 77 minutes, it's just long enough to be called a feature without straining the attention spans of tots and their adult squires alike, and while this lacks much of the subversive asides that Henson's Muppet films sneak in, it remains a top-notch example of uninsulting kid humor at its goofiest. The plot revolves around helium-voiced Elmo, who, judging from his bedroom decor, loves Tiger Woods and getting up at 6:30am..."

Bride of Chucky
No matter that Brad Dourif snagged an Academy Award nomination for his work in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest -- for legions of moviegoers, he'll always be best remembered...
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Film Review  October 23, 1998, by Marc Savlov
"...This movie begins 10 years after the original Child's Play took place, at which time the soul of serial killer Charles “Chucky” Lee Ray was transplanted -- via voodoo -- into the body of a plastic Good Guys doll. Now, Ray's ex-girlfriend Tiffany (Tilly, all oozy sexuality and breathy, helium squeaks) has stolen the remains of Chucky from a police evidence locker and raised him from the dead..."

Trapped in Paradise
Trapped in Paradise? How about Trapped in the Third Ring of Hell? Interminably unfunny, this holiday offering about how the three Firpo brothers learn the true meaning of Christmas from...

Film Review  December 9, 1994, by Steve Davis
"...If it isn't the worst movie of the year, it's definitely in the running. Not surprisingly, SNL alumni Lovitz and Carvey give one-note characterizations that grow monotonous quickly -- when are these and other graduates of television sketch comedy going to learn the difference between five minutes and two hours? Carvey's voice in the course of the film is a particularly grating experience: Imagine an addled Mickey Rourke on helium, if you dare..."

Helium
Music Review  December 7, 2017, by Libby Webster
"...Since the early Nineties, Mary Timony has quietly claimed an essential place in the rock canon. Before her current band Ex Hex, the guitarist/vocalist led Boston trio Helium from 1992-98..."

The Big Cheese
South by Southwest 1997
Music Story  March 21, 1997
"...HELIUM Liberty Lunch, Friday, March 14..."

Mr. Smarty Pants Knows
Columns  November 22, 2013, by Mr. Smarty Pants
"...For the pilot episode of SpongeBob SquarePants, show creator Stephen Hillenburg brought in a tank of helium for the voice actors to use to augment their voices. Fortunately for Tom Kenny, once he came up with the voice for SpongeBob using helium, he was able to voice it from that point forward without helium...."

Sxsw
Music Story  March 14, 1997
"...HELIUM: Mary Timony, vocalist for the Boston-based Helium, looks and sounds for all the world like an ethereal kewpie doll cutie pie. That is until you get past the squeaky-clean timbre of her voice to what she's actually singing. There you'll find sensibilities as fractured as U.S.-Mexico drug policy relations and lyrics as cutting and biting as a February wind off the Hahbah. (Liberty Lunch, 10pm) -- Christopher Gray..."

Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip
Call the exterminator: The tuneful rodents are back

Film Review  December 18, 2015, by Josh Kupecki
"...Is there some Arrested Development casting conspiracy here? Is Michael Cera next?). Benson pursues Alvin and the gang through the South as they make mischief and butcher songs with their trademark helium-pitched vocal aesthetic (I could have gone my whole life without hearing them cover DJ Snake/Lil Jon’s “Turn Down for What,” but alas, I am now marked)..."

John Carter
Old-school "Gosh, wow!" sense-of-wonder filmmaking is in short supply these days, but now John Carter has arrived to fill the void.
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Film Review  March 9, 2012, by Marc Savlov
"...The second film of the year helmed by a Pixar Animation alum making his first foray into a live-action Hollywood blockbuster (the first was Brad Bird's Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol), John Carter is by far the better film. It's more exciting, more challenging, and a veritable bestiary of alien creatures that run the gamut from cute (a hippopotamus-sized, puglike critter) to frightening (giant, blind, white simians), and from red-skinned bipeds who sail on seas of light (the inhabitants of the peaceful kingdom of Helium) to the tusked, green-skinned, sinewy Tharks, a fearsome, tribal species engaged in conflict with the bipedal Zodangan warmongers...."

Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked
We're wondering if anyone will call the ASPCA if we leave these animated rodents chipwrecked far from civilization.

Film Review  December 16, 2011, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...My cat was at home stalking mice that were seeking warmer shelter now that the weather has taken a decided turn toward winter. I was in a theatre watching helium-voiced chipmunks sing..."

NPR Day Party
Music Story  March 18, 2011, by Audra Schroeder
"...Her voice is her story, big and bell-clear, and the band responded with something approaching psych – repetitious drones that crested in waves. The crowd changed slightly for Wild Flag, the quartet of Sleater-Kinney's Carrie Brownstein and Janet Weiss, the Minders' Rebecca Cole, and Helium's Mary Timony..."

Mr. Smarty Pants Knows
Columns  September 3, 2010, by Mr. Smarty Pants
"...According to Nobel Prize-winning scientist Robert Richardson, the world is running out of helium, and resources could run out within 25 to 30 years. A 1996 law ruled that the Federal Helium Reserve, located near Amarillo, Texas, should be sold off within 20 years...."

Up
Pixar tops itself with its new animated film that offers so much more than its promotional promise of a fantastical movie about a house that flies on balloon power.
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Film Review  May 29, 2009, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...Their life story is then told through a wordless montage that carries them from youth into old age: marriage, fixing up a dilapidated house, Ellie’s inability to bear children, their dreams of one day traveling to Muntz’s Paradise Falls, Carl’s career as a balloon seller, the passage of time and dreams forestalled, old age, and eventually, Ellie’s death, which leaves Carl a solitary old codger living out his years in the same house surrounded by memories of the past and a refusal to accept the changes required by the present. When he is finally forced out of his home, Carl manages to hook up his house to thousands of helium balloons and finally head off to Paradise Falls instead of the Shady Oaks Retirement Home..."

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