Sunday, March 30, 2008
Delightful musical romance follows a maiden (the sparkling Amy Adams) from the world of animated fairy tales into contemporary, live-action Manhattan where she falls in love with a lawyer (Patrick Dempsey), despite the entreaties of her princely suitor (James Marsden) and the meddling of an evil queen (Susan Sarandon). With affection and wit, director Kevin Lima and his team gently spoof the cartoon fairy-tale genre on which Disney built its reputation, never losing sight of its traditional values and perennial charms. A few scary images, some sexual innuendo and a brief instance of scatological humor. A-I -- general patronage. (PG) 2007
HA! This review uses my new word... scatological... see below for definition. Sophia watched this movie on youtube while I cleaned the office. So excluding having to see it in 11 installments and missing some parts here and there, I have to say that the movie was enjoyable, if not sometimes predictable. Amy Adams did a great job at portraying a princess from the cartoon world with gesticulations and vocal mannerisms that Sophia thought were delightful. The music is also catchy and fun.
Friday, March 28, 2008
I am sad to report that this is the only book I've read in its entirety in a long time. Just wait until I finish these others! I got this book from Leslie, and I think she got it at the airport. It is the kind of book that one would want to read on an airplane... I think. It's pretty light and "accessible" as they say. It covers birth order, temperaments, personalities, love languages, and childhood memories. If you haven't read on this subject, this is a nice general summary. If you have, you'll be pretty bored.
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Generally delightful animated feature about a scrappy bee (voice of Jerry Seinfeld) who decides to sue the human race for stealing the honey manufactured by his hard-working bee brethren and brings the case to court, with the help of a sympathetic florist (Renee Zellweger). An often very funny script (by Seinfeld and others), terrific voice work from a cast including John Goodman, Chris Rock, Kathy Bates, and many more, and ultimately, a valuable ecological lesson, make this film -- directed by Simon J. Smith and Steve Hickner -- above-average family fare. Mild innuendo. A-I -- general patronage. (PG) 2007
This movie is kinda silly. Sophia & Oliver loved it, but not the mama. There are some good lines in the movie, but probably not worth the time it takes to watch the rest of it. This movie has moved Jerry Seinfeld up a notch in the annoying category. Maybe it was just a bad day...
It's been awhile since I've posted about some delicious food I enjoy. Today I had a banana and mayonnaise sandwich. Now, this picture isn't really accurate because the best banana and mayonnaise sandwich is with white bread, (and I think this is a peanut butter and banana sandwich anyway... I couldn't find one w/out...) I love these things. I don't even remember where I first had one, but it has stuck with me. There's something about the softness of the bread and the creaminess of the banana that is quite a treat! Ray thinks they are "DISSGUSTING" [sic] and that "banana + sandwich = gag." What do you think?
Friday, March 21, 2008
Wednesday, March 19, 2008
Moving World War II romance of a well-to-do young Englishwoman (Keira Knightley) serving as a nurse and the working-class soldier (James McAvoy) she has loved for years, but from whom she had been separated years before when her kid sister (Saoirse Ronan) wrongly accused him of a crime, an injustice that will haunt the accuser (now played by Romola Garai) ever after. Director Joe Wright, working from Christopher Hampton's adaptation of Ian McEwan's novel, persuasively limns an unusual story of betrayal, steadfast love, forgiveness and redemption with some surprising twists, and with further pluses in the sensitive performances and period detail. A fully clothed nonmarital sexual encounter, an implied encounter between an adult and an underage girl, use of the f-word among soldiers, brief profanity, wartime dead and wounded imagery, and a crude written sexual remark. A-III -- adults. (R) 2007
I saw this movie in the theater courtesy of Reagan, the only person who could love period films more than I do, except I thought he had sworn off WWII movies...oh, wait, that was Holocaust movies. I was very happy when I saw that the composer for this movie won an Oscar. He created this intimate and intriguing motif, probably my favorite part of the movie. Knightley's mouth didn't seem to bother me as much and she looked gorgeous. The plot was wonderfully, painfully twisted and entertaining in that deep artful sort of way. As for the "fully clothed nonmarital sexual enncounter," if I can be insensitive, that's what you get for using a privilege outside it's domain. Perhaps the little girl's jealousy would have thwarted their love anyway, even if they had gotten married before "writing crude sexual remarks" or displaying inappropriate behavior. I think it's an interesting question to ask, how do children interpret sexual images they see before they can really understand what they mean? What do they do with these images and feelings? What about all the ones our children are now bombarded with through the media?
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Steve Carrell shines as the widowed father of three girls who takes them to a family reunion at his parents' rambling house in Rhode Island, and while there falls in love with an empathetic woman (Juliette Binoche) he meets in a bookstore, only to learn she's the girlfriend of his younger brother (Dane Cook). Also on the plus side of director Peter Hedges' leisurely paced, likable but only mildly amusing film are the positive depiction of Carrell's large, loving family, and the almost total lack of objectionable elements. But the basic setup seems contrived, the ostensible romance earthbound, and the formulaic script not terribly funny. Mild innuendo. A-II -- adults and adolescents. (PG-13) 2007
Of course, I love Juliette Binoche and Steve Carrell. It's a cute story line. I felt for the character, though, like with Ben Stiller, it makes me uncomfortable to see someone treated so badly or have it so bad. Dane Cook is funny. I like him when he's less crude. I recommend this film. :)
Ok, so I am going to cheat a little bit, due to my time and brain constraints, and give the US Conference of Catholic Bishops' review on the movies from now on. I realized that I check this anyway, so why not put it down for your reading pleasure. You can look up, like, every movie known to man and they have viewed and reviewed it. They are always spot on. I love it. This is the abridged version; they give full length reviews, too.
I'll give a little bit of my impression of the movie after theirs...
The Brave One -- Finely wrought but ultimately troubling tale of a radio personality (Jodie Foster) who gradually becomes a vigilante after her fiance (Naveen Andrews) is killed and she herself grievously wounded in an attack in New York's Central Park, and of her complex relationship with a police detective (Terrence Howard) who is determined to hunt down the vigilante. An unsettling meditation on the effects of fear -- and of its absence -- director Neil Jordan's film has virtually every element of a great work of art -- except, ultimately, a steadfast commitment to humane values. Brutal violence with blood and gore, some graphic sexual activity, rear and upper female nudity, outbursts of extremely rough language, and frequent crude and crass language. O -- morally offensive. (R) 2007
This was not my kind of movie, as you may have been able to surmise. BUT, it was worth if for Sayid...
Monday, March 17, 2008
Monday, March 3, 2008
OK- I don't have time to write any decent entries, so I'm not going to spend too much time talking about these--- just 2 sentences a piece.
Ocean's 13-- I love Don Cheadle. Please tell me there's not going to be an Ocean's 14.
3:10 to Yuma-- It is in every sense a dude's movie. Christian Bale, I don't care if you are a one-legged veteran rancher, you cannot hide that you are good looking.
Bourne Ultimatum-- This series of movies is always fun. I love when it's subtitled.
Saturday night we saw Fr. Richard Ho Lung and Friends perform at St. Thomas More. The show was called SPIRIT and showcased some Jamaican spirituals, mostly, I believe, written by Fr. Ho Lung. They encouraged dancing and singing and it was nice to watch the crowd. There is something special about [diasporic] African spirituality. It's quite poignant and helps us more reserved folk express those emotional ebbings that would otherwise remain inside... They were raising money for a new orphanage in Uganda. I was happy to give. Their work is awesome and worth investigating. They offer work retreats for men and women in Jamaica. Please support them if you can!