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Sundries
...a sweatshop of moxie

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Christmas Movie Guide

(Welcome Terra Nova readers!)



So there you are, as Christmas Day approaches, cooped up in your home with mountains of presents still to wrap, unruly kids to control, and an overworked spouse who is on their third martini.

There is only one solution, and you know it -- let's go catch a movie!

But which one?

Well, say no more. Here I am with a timely post about what Christmas films are out there for all to view, and what might be coming soon, so keep your eyes peeled.

Get out a pencil, paper, or PDA, pour out another vodka martini, as I divulge your...


CHRISTMAS MOVIE GUIDE 2006


My guide is particular to me, and to my tastes, but cinephile though I am, 1920s-1930s quasi-expert I may fancy myself to be, Third Reich film buff extraordinaire that I indulge myself thinking that I am, I have never snubbed my nose at popular fare.

You are looking at perhaps the only Alain Resnais fan in all the world, who enjoyed the heck out of the Wayans' Brothers "White Chicks", so there.

So let's start by concentrating on what people saw last weekend, in order of Box Office weekend finish, shall we? Vox Populi knows best.


The Pursuit of Happyness


Some people think it's too grim to watch during the festive season, this story of a near homeless man, who risks everything on a hunch about his talents, but I can tell you that there can be no better film at the moment (save The Nativity Story), which is most evocative of Christmas.

- The humble beginnings which seem to entrap, more than to liberate.

- The hardships one must undergo, when everything seems ranged against us.

- The people poised to take advantage of one, but also unexpected benefactors bearing the gift of opportunity.

All of this, and Will Smith acting better than he's ever done since Six Degrees of Separation. Pack up your troubles in your kit bag, and go see this movie.

GRADE: A


Eragon


I don't understand why Eragon got trashed by the critics and fans. I enjoyed myself tremendously watching this film, which however, I realise is no Peter Jackson fantasy special. In fact, the critic who called it Lord of the Wings, had a comical point.

But, if like me, you've never read the book and therefore come with a tabula rasa of expectations, you'll like this old-fashioned adventure with Jeremy Irons, and fresh-cheeked Edward Speleers sharing a sinewy Arthurian chemistry between them.

GRADE: B


Happy Feet


Despite somewhat ham-handed attempts at being environmentally-correct, and with subtexts that hit all the socially-correct notes (it's okay to be different, society must accept you, you don't need to change, the marginalised need to be accepted), this is a fun film, and as they say, for all the family.

Robin Williams voices two penguinos (try to see if you can pick out which ones!) and does his level best to over-actor his characters to push the story along, but it's young Elijah Wood who, as ever, gives a subtle, yet never feeble performance.

And who knew Clueless ugly duckling Brittany Murphy could sing so well?

GRADE: B-


Apocalypto


I have NEVER seen a movie like Apocalypto, and chances are that you haven't either.

If Mel Gibson had mixed The Mission, John Boorman's Emerald Forest, and Fitzcarraldo/Aguirre together in a cauldron, the stew that is Apocalypto would still not come out.

Whatever else are his failings (and they were enough, that I had almost written him off as a producer/director/human being), it's evident that Gibson has a directorial VISION these days, that cannot be ignored.

Note, this film is a bloodbath. Remember that scene in Carrie? Well, quadruple the blood in metric tonnes. But as I overheard a lady filing out of the theatre say, "It's gratuitous violence that I can't stand. This was history." Indeed.

Of all the films this Christmas holiday, this is the one you can't miss. Mind you go to a packed theatre though! The sound of awe from the audience will overwhelm you.

GRADE: A-


Blood Diamond


You've heard it said before: Leo Di Caprio is having a career year. And I'm here to tell you -- it's about time.

Though he petered out after Titanic (which I actually enjoyed, though it was sublimely ridiculous all the same), he seems to have recaptured the earlier goods he showed in What's Eating Gilbert Grape? and This Boy's Life.

He easily could have become another Keanu Reeves, by taking on popular vehicles, or cashed in on his Mongolian good-looks like toothy Cameron Diaz, but unlike them, he actually has talent, and it's starting to show again.

Di Caprio takes a minor film like Blood Diamonds, and infuses his own peculiar blend of Gary Cooper manliness, into a story which is easy to dismiss otherwise. Djimon Hounsou, the stalwart African slave from "Amistad", shows the same quiet dignity and integrity he did there, providing the perfect foil to the ruthlessness of Di Caprio's nature. Plus, it shares the same basic themes, without the preachiness of Rwanda Hotel.

This one is the one you see, if there are teens in the family.

GRADE: B


Casino Royale


By now, the phrase "reboot of the series" has been done to death, but it really is a new vision that we are given.

The Blond Bond does not show the temptuousness of Timothy Dalton, or the suave Eurotrashiness of Pierce Brosnan, nor is he the cheeky rogue that was Roger Moore.

He's closest to the working-class enigma that was Sean Connery, who played his Bond close to his vest -- a perfect analogy for this card-shark James Bond.

If such a thing could exist, I would say this is lo-fi 007.

Don't miss the first 20 minutes -- best chase scene I've seen this season, and done almost without doubles.

GRADE: A-


The Nativity Story


The reason for the season.

I think the scriptwriter must have been St. Teresa d'Avila because Joseph is the hero of this tale, not Mary -- this is a bit of a shock, and can explain why this movie didn't do so well.

For all its faults, and despite the unfortunate soundtrack, which is too Hallmark Cards for words (check out the Carol of the Bells during the find-the-manger scene, oy), I liked it.

But then I would -- I'm an unrepentant, happy Roman Catholic.

Still the best story ever told, though.

GRADE: B-


QUICK HITS


Some other films which might still be tooling around, which you might want an opinion on, include:

Borat: It's a brilliant film. And very very unfunny. A French friend described it best by saying it's "l'humeur pipi-caca". Quite. I challenge anyone to find this film funny, in the first 20 minutes. Seriously.

GRADE: C-


The Queen: It grows on you. It's an excellent film, full of nuances of character by the inestimable Helen Mirren. And 2006 has been a very quiet year, quality-wise, so I am revising my earlier grade. Read my full review here.

GRADE: A


Stranger Than Fiction: I enjoyed it a lot, actually, being a bit of a surprise because I dislike Will Ferrell's film roles, to say the least. It's one of the few films this Christmas, which I wouldn't mind watching again since it flirts with smart. Oh, one thing. Maggie Gyllenhaal may be great in Sherrybaby, but in every film I've seen her, she grates on your nerves. She's the Joan Cusack of our generation, down to the better actor brother. And like Cusack, Gyllenhaal will one day win a Best Supporting Actress statuette. Mark me.

GRADE: A-


Babel: If only for the Japanese girl and her story. And maybe the maid. The otherwise reliable Cate Blanchett just fades away under the planetary orbit of Brad Pitt's bad acting skills.

GRADE: C+


NEW REVIEW: The Painted Veil: Slow, meandering but not unworthy, this is a remake of the classic Greta Garbo film (1934), which Merchant/Ivory SHOULD'VE made, instead of the insipid The White Countess. Somerset Maugham's book is unusually slow-paced, so to translate this to film, director John Curran had to bookend two almost distinct storylines, into one film. The first part, I'll be honest, is too uncharismatic for words. The movie doesn't hit paydirt until Edward Norton and Naomi Watts (both excellent, despite their on-again, off-again "English" accents) move to the cholera outpost. Even Diana Riggs puts in a brief appearance as a French Mother Superior, which delights for its surprise. This story is as unlike The Holiday as is possible, but The Painted Veil is 10x more romantic, than that slightly dim chick flick (unfair comparison, I know, but there it is). This story is not about the coup de foudre you're supposed get when you fall in love, especially the love of today, but rather the slow awakening to love's possibilities, something quite lost to the modern world.

GRADE: A


NEW REVIEW: Notes on a Scandal: Judi, Judi, Judi. Read my full review here.

GRADE: B+


NEW REVIEW: The Good Shepherd: At a hefty 2:40 minutes, this seemed like a promising, adult film. The buzz was already tremendous regarding DeNiro's chances to outduel his mentor, Scorcese, for a Best Director statuette. So I went, and was bored to bits. Yes, it's a tale about WASPs, their implied work ethic, and dourness, but good Lord, the best thing I can say about it, was that it was a polished-looking work, to the point of slickness. Oh, and don't miss the best line of the film around the 2 hour mark. Joe Pesci is racistly telling Matt Damon's character about each of the immigrant groups, and their "thing". The Irish with their Church; the Italians, their family; black people (not the word he used) their "music". So what is "your people's thing, Mr. Wilson?". "The United States of America. The rest of you are just visiting." I howled in laughter. Embarrassing situation, since I was the only one in the theatre laughing. Watch the DVD.

GRADE: C+


NEW REVIEW: Dreamgirls: Okay, here's the deal. It's a happy romp of a movie, with a tour-de-force performance by ex-American Idol hopeful, Jennifer Hudson -- with her booming, courageous voice. But I walked out 10 minutes before the end (yes!), because I had a splitting headache. Never much into musicals, I had no idea this was best characterised as such. For whatever reason, I thought it was a couple of numbers, here and there, interspersed with a solid storyline, allegedly about Diana Ross and the Supremes. Uh, no. That was Ray and Walk the Line, but definitely not Dreamgirls. And for what it's worth, the other acting performances, particularly by Beyoncé and Jamie Foxx (who will struggle in future films, since he doesn't nearly have the range of Will Smith), were very discrete. Eddie Murphy's performance was not, and that's fantastic, but his character was a caricature, and therefore difficult to enjoy his demise.

GRADE: B-


NEW REVIEW: Night at the Museum: Sehr Cute. And so utterly vindicates the horrible reviews levelled at it by the bah-humbug film critics, who must remember, family holiday movies can't be judged with the same steely eye that one would, for say, a Robert DeNiro film (cough). I loved Dick Van Dyke, and for once, I understood his English! Mickey Rooney was a rapscallion, but actually, his role was rather a minor one. Still, good to see him fussin' up a storm, this veteran who debuted in film waaay back in 1926. Incredible really.

GRADE: B+


NEW REVIEW: The Holiday: Seriously? I didn't like it. Or rather, I liked EXACTLY half the film -- the bits with that benzedrine puff-adder (pace Sybil Fawlty), Kate Winslet, and a rather surprisingly effective romantic foil, Jack Black. I wish they had done more with the Ode to Old Hollywood storyline, though, as well as castrating Jude Law, and eviscerating Cameron Diaz. CRIKEY. She's so DAMN PERKY, in that horrible modern American girl way, that screams "bare midriff mallrat". Ick. With the best will in the world, considering it came highly recommended by Sundries readers, I can only give this syrupy, illogical pic, a...

GRADE: C



COMING SOON:

Volver: Has arrived in many areas, like in South Florida, but still a limited release film most places. I despised Bad Education, and indeed, anything with Gael Garcia-Bernal, so I was pleasantly surprised to watch this involved hommage on the women of Almodovar's life -- las mujeres del barrio. Just watch it, so you can remember what a good little actress Penelope Cruz is...in Spanish.

GRADE: A-


Little Children: No, just no. Another lame-o anti-suburbia Hollywood treatment, that even sonourous Frontline narrator, Will Lyman, can't save from being a mess.

GRADE: D


The Fountain: And speaking of messes...listen, I liked it, but I recognise that it's convoluted, and somewhat pointless as a film. Basically, a doctor whose wife is dying of cancer is shown through 5 centuries trying to find a cure, and thereto a reason for their joint suffering. It feels like a Buddhist take on 2001: A Space Odyssey. Heh.

GRADE: C


The History Boys: Alan Bennett's play was transposed to cinema, and its talkativeness betrays its origins. For all that, it's a rifle-shot of intelligence this Christmas, and I challenge you to find a better hommage scene on celluloid, than the Brief Encounter take by these History Boys. Not for the kiddies, though, and possibly, not one you take your parents to, either.

GRADE: B+


Children of Men: I was prepared to hate it, because of its hysterical modern-day undertones, but I'm a sucker for any historical-futurism like Brazil or Bladerunner, so I loved it. Already opened in the director's native Mexico, I was told, but you have only two weeks to wait, to see it. Read my full review here.

GRADE: A-


Perfume - The Story of a Murder: I read Patrick Süsskind's book under the covers in my boarding school, way back in 1989 when it was the Da Vinci Code sensation of its time. I couldn't wait to see what Twykwer had done with the story of a despised, malformed orphan boy, which mixes many storylines, such as the perfumiers trade in Grasse, with pre-Revolutionary France mayhem. It was interesting...but as they say, the book is much better.

GRADE: B-


Pan's Labyrinth: Best Movie I've Seen This Year...save Half-Nelson and Children of Men. NOT TO BE MISSED. 'Nuff said.

GRADE: A+


There.

I'll add further thoughts if you have any questions, or if I see more films as the weeks go by.

I can't wait for Rocky XXIII, which I'm watching tonight!

Save me the aisle seat in the balcony.



MORE WINTER 2006 MOVIES

"3 Needles"
"The Good German" (Must-See For Me)

"Breaking and Entering"
"Off the Black"
"Unaccompanied Minors"

"Venus" (Must-See For Me)
"Brooklyn Rules"
"Home of the Brave"
"Arthur and the Invisibles" (About to watch, Stay Tuned)

"Charlotte's Web"
"We Are Marshall"

"Rocky Balboa" (Must-See For Me)
"Curse of the Golden Flower"

"Black Christmas"
"Factory Girl"

"Miss Potter"
"The Dead Girl"

VICTORIA'S TOP 10 2006 FILMS (SO FAR)

1. Pan's Labyrinth
2. Children of Men
3. Half-Nelson
4. The Queen
5. The Lives of Others
6. The King of Scotland
7. L'Enfant
8. 49 Up
9. United 93
10. Shortbus

Note: I haven't, as yet, seen Letters from Iwo Jima (I didn't like Flags of Our Fathers), or David Lynch's Inland Empire.

25 Comments:

  • Blimey, you watch a lot of films. The last time I went to the pictures was when Transporter 2 was out. It was quite poor.
    I've bought about 8 DVD's since then of which I've probably watch 1 or 2, and some of those are films I've already seen.
    I'm too busy being in ur interwubs leeching ur torrents. Plus, I'm not really a movie person, I'm a music person.

    By Blogger Kullrad, at Wed Dec 20, 06:26:00 am GMT-5  

  • I'm a music person.

    Right, Kully. That's the point -- you're a music person.

    Whenever I used to read the Youksef JdS threads on music suggestions, I'd have the exact same reaction:

    These people have spent a lifetime listening to music.

    Only I wouldn't say people. ;)

    P.S.: Movies. Reading-Writing. Soccer. Travelling. Conversation. My 5 life interests, in a nutshell.

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Wed Dec 20, 01:10:00 pm GMT-5  

  • I am in total agreement with you about "Bore-at"! Bleech! I am looking forward to "Dreamgirls," "Good German", "Good Shepard", and "History Boys" as well!


    Fighting off the flu, I've been Netflixing lately..."Images of Frank Geary" and a slug'o Carol Lombard movies...

    By Blogger Ron, at Wed Dec 20, 01:22:00 pm GMT-5  

  • Victoria: You are a [screen] gem! Thanks for this wonderful service! I suggest you put "The Holiday" up on your to-see list...it's perfect for you: half in England, half in L.A. Toothy Cameron Diaz is beautiful with even-more-beautiful Jude Law. Truly good chemistry. And Kate Winslett? She's tremendous. Plus there's a B-story about making movies. Your cup of tea.

    By Blogger Ruth Anne Adams, at Wed Dec 20, 05:53:00 pm GMT-5  

  • I am in total agreement with you about "Bore-at"! Bleech!

    LOL! Bore-at.

    One day I'm going to write that wrap-up post about Borat, perhaps closer to the Golden Globes, since I think he'll win the Comedy/Musical Actor Award, hands down.

    I don't think the Academy will give him the nomination and certainly not let him win the BA Award. First, as you know, they don't like comedies, and the Academy are fairly traditional when it comes down to it.

    I am looking forward to "Dreamgirls," "Good German", "Good Shepard", and "History Boys" as well!

    I am actually looking forward to Deniro's debut as director too.

    There's even Oscar buzz suggesting that his disciple will take away Marty's directorial Oscar, from him. That would be too funny, but the Academy also didn't like Spielberg, so take heart Scorcese.

    Fighting off the flu, I've been Netflixing lately..."Images of Frank Geary" and a slug'o Carol Lombard movies...

    Sketches of Frank Gehry, I LOVED! You have impeccable taste, as ever, Ron. You always impress me with your cinematic taste.

    In fact, this year has been superb for documentaries -- even the political ones, have at least been good production values (unlike the abysmal ones like Outfoxed, and Bush's Brain).

    ...as for Lombard, did you know, speaking of Ethel Merman earlier, that she considered Lombard the greatest American comedienne of the 20th century, and she was her idol?

    Interesting, I think.

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Wed Dec 20, 10:13:00 pm GMT-5  

  • Victoria: You are a [screen] gem!

    Polish me baby! ;)

    (Seriously, though, I really appreciate that, Ruth Anne. I like to be encouraged)

    Thanks for this wonderful service!

    Heh. A pleasure -- seeing how poor Roger Ebert is still incapacitated.

    (I had forgotten how much I disliked Roeper, and really still miss Siskel...)

    I suggest you put "The Holiday" up on your to-see list...it's perfect for you: half in England, half in L.A. Toothy Cameron Diaz is beautiful with even-more-beautiful Jude Law. Truly good chemistry. And Kate Winslett? She's tremendous. Plus there's a B-story about making movies. Your cup of tea.

    On paper, I would agree with you.

    Kate Winslet is a quirky actress, and not without a goodly amount of talent.

    But both she and Law are Hollywood's favourite Brits, like Hugh Grant used to be, which grates on my nerves.

    I loved Law in Wilde, loved him more in Talented Mr. Ripley, adored him in Gattaca, and then...he went Hollywood on me.

    If you've ever seen he and Winslet (and Justin Timberlake, heh), on a talk show we have in Britain, called Parkinson -- like Johnny Carson -- you'll know why I cannot stand him.

    (It's probably on Youtube)

    He's so full of himself, it makes one gasp.

    And Jack Black! I hate that boy.

    Will I really like The Holiday? Perhaps -- but I think I'll wait for the DVD...

    P.S.: I finally screwed up courage and bought a ticket last Sunday for Charlotte's Web. I didn't last 10 minutes, when Charlotte's legs came into view. I ran out of the cinema, nearly screaming. Sucks to be an arachnaphobe.

    P.P.S.: Just came back from shopping, and didn't have the strength to watch Rocky VI. Oh well.

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Wed Dec 20, 10:20:00 pm GMT-5  

  • ...as for Lombard, did you know, speaking of Ethel Merman earlier, that she considered Lombard the greatest American comedienne of the 20th century, and she was her idol?

    That's interesting! Lombard can be drop-dead elegant and goofy as a bedbug all at the same time! The funniest one of the recent set I've just seen was "True Confession" with Fred McMurray. She has the attention span of a flea, but she's hilarious! Well worth seeing.

    I have newsreel of her and Gable doing some duck hunting...in color no less! (based on looks alone wouldn't Uma Thurman play Lombard in biopic of her today?)

    Sketches of Frank Gehry, I LOVED! You have impeccable taste, as ever, Ron. You always impress me with your cinematic taste.

    You embarrass me with such praise... Thank You very much, Victoria.

    By Blogger Ron, at Wed Dec 20, 11:04:00 pm GMT-5  

  • "I am actually looking forward to Deniro's debut as director too."

    A minor quibble, Victoria: DeNiro's directing debut was actually A Bronx Tale. (If I knew how to do this HTML thingie, I'd provide you a link to http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0106489/. How 'bout a quick lesson?)

    Otherwise, a great list.

    By Blogger Pete, at Thu Dec 21, 05:51:00 am GMT-5  

  • I'm waiting for some of those films to make it to DVD. Then I'll see if the local library has them in. :)

    Looking forward to "Queen". I've enjoyed Mirren since she did those BBC shows as the Police Inspector. She was tremendous!

    Pete: in HTML the links are written - minus the extra spaces inside the carets - like this < a href="theurlofthesiteyouarelinking" >The Link< /a >

    By Blogger benning, at Thu Dec 21, 09:26:00 am GMT-5  

  • I have newsreel of her and Gable doing some duck hunting...in color no less! (based on looks alone wouldn't Uma Thurman play Lombard in biopic of her today?)

    Good call!

    Minor quibble is that Uma is something like 6'9, whereas Carole Lombard, despite her clear, Indiana prairie good-looks which sometimes gives off the illusion the person is lankier, was a mere 5'4" -- two inches smaller than I, even.

    And also, Uma is aging badly...in that German woman way of too many wrinkles around the eyes (her mum is German, IIRC).

    Carole Lombard is forever young, and gorgeous. Sigh.

    BTW, chalk up another Lombard fancier -- and this one, is very telling:

    Lucy Ball!

    Lombard was her idol, too.

    I might have to revisit some of those films of hers, since I thought Carole Lombard was good, but Lucy Ball (who is one of MY heroines and belies that dreadful Christopher Hitchens opinion that only dykes or freaks can be funny) is quite a character reference.

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Thu Dec 21, 10:31:00 am GMT-5  

  • BTW, apropos to that film reel which i believe I have seen too, Ron, Lombard was the only woman who could look as good in jodhpurs as she could in diaphanous gowns.

    With the possible exception, of Jacqueline Kennedy.

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Thu Dec 21, 10:32:00 am GMT-5  


  • A minor quibble, Victoria: DeNiro's directing debut was actually A Bronx Tale.


    Pete, you're so right!

    I have never seen that film, yet (nor in fact, Goodfellas...I know, I know, spare me, I know -- hey, I finally saw Spinal Tap for the first time -- hey Ruth Anne!), and for whatever reason, I think I confuse The Bronx Tale with an animated film with a similar name.

    I think it came out when I was a child, so therefore the confusion. :)

    I will check it out, though, one day...

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Thu Dec 21, 10:35:00 am GMT-5  

  • I'm waiting for some of those films to make it to DVD. Then I'll see if the local library has them in. :)

    Hey, I used to do that all the time!

    But my local library system charges 1 whole dollar for each day a movie is late -- you only get a movie for 7 days, with no renewals (at least, when I used to take them out).

    And me, well, I'm perennially late for stuff.

    At one point, I owed them 272 dollars in late fees.

    That's when I finally plunked down a monthly membership to Blockbuster.

    Looking forward to "Queen". I've enjoyed Mirren since she did those BBC shows as the Police Inspector. She was tremendous!

    Didn't she take it up the duff in one of those episodes?

    Good times.

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Thu Dec 21, 10:39:00 am GMT-5  

  • NOTE:

    Please keep checking this blogpost throughout the season, well into January.

    I will be updating it, with my further grades and thoughts about this or that film.

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Thu Dec 21, 10:40:00 am GMT-5  

  • "Didn't she take it up the duff in one of those episodes?"


    Perhaps so, but what a magnificent duff! ;)

    By Blogger benning, at Thu Dec 21, 10:57:00 am GMT-5  

  • Minor quibble is that Uma is something like 6'9, whereas Carole Lombard, despite her clear, Indiana prairie good-looks which sometimes gives off the illusion the person is lankier, was a mere 5'4" -- two inches smaller than I, even.

    ah, yes...this would be a problem even CGI might not solve.

    And also, Uma is aging badly...in that German woman way of too many wrinkles around the eyes (her mum is German, IIRC).

    Yes, quite true! Her eyes are looking more sallow, sharp blue pools in an overtanned facescape...
    Uma's mother is Swedish! There is a large, nude bronze statue of her grandmother in the small Swedish town she was from, placed there because of her beauty...

    Carole Lombard is forever young, and gorgeous. Sigh.

    Sadly, in a way...

    BTW, chalk up another Lombard fancier -- and this one, is very telling:

    Lucy Ball!

    Lombard was her idol, too.

    I might have to revisit some of those films of hers, since I thought Carole Lombard was good, but Lucy Ball (who is one of MY heroines and belies that dreadful Christopher Hitchens opinion that only dykes or freaks can be funny) is quite a character reference.


    I admire Hitch, but, yes, these seemed to be the writings of "Hootch", his 80-proof altar ego.

    BTW, my postie is finally up!

    By Blogger Ron, at Thu Dec 21, 12:04:00 pm GMT-5  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger Ron, at Thu Dec 21, 12:11:00 pm GMT-5  

  • Just cause I like her so:

    Ginger Rogers looks good in jodphurs in "Isn't this a lovely day to be caught in the rain?", in Top Hat.

    (not being contentious, just pointing it out!)

    My spelling -- going straight to hell!

    By Blogger Ron, at Thu Dec 21, 12:13:00 pm GMT-5  

  • Greetings, Victoria -

    At my sister's urging, I am visiting your site.

    You should be the replacement for Siskel and Ebert. AND I thought I saw a bunch of movies.

    I go to movies with my good friend, Anne, who at the time of my separation and divorce from a hubby of 22+ years, helped me to be my "breakup buddy" (It's Called a Breakup Because It's Broken - Greg Berhardt). She sees more than I do...but we love going together. I seriously think I go just for the popcorn.

    However, I agree with the Maternal Optimist that The Holiday needs to be bunched in your excellent listing of flicks to catch.

    Anne and I are going Fri/Sat/Sun/Mon to see films. She saw Blood Diamond last evening, but I haven't see it yet. I may go tonight, but not sure if I'll see Holiday again (I'm a die-hard romantic having loved the likes of Titanic - Love Actually and Something's Gotta Give). But, Charlotte's Web may win out, too. Occasionally the "kid" in me surfaces.

    I believe that we'll see We Are Marshall tomorrow and I have heard nothing but wonderful things for this picture.

    The Pursuit of Happyness is awesome. Will Smith did a phenomonal job portraying Chris Gardner (of Milwaukee, WI). I saw it on Sunday.

    Anyway...I can't wait to see Rocky on Christmas. I believe I'll take my mom to that since she hails from Philly and I think she'll love it.

    Anne and I took her to see Little Miss Sunshine and the first words out of her mouth were, "do they have to use the f-word all time?" As well as criticizing Alan Arkin for doing coccaine. I told her it's Hollywood, Mom....and if you're going to go to movies w/me...you gotta watch 'em.

    Well..I have droned on way too long....thanks for this great site!!

    Take care!!

    Peggy
    (Gone to the Dogs - Blog)

    By Blogger Peggy Gero DaValt, at Thu Dec 21, 12:24:00 pm GMT-5  

  • Perhaps so, but what a magnificent duff! ;)

    Can you imagine a TV police woman here in the US, doing the same thing? Seriously.

    Cagney or Lacey, on all fours.

    That Helen Mirren might be an ex-hippie chick, but she is very brave.

    P.S.: The cast of "The Queen" have been invited to Buckingham Palace, although it is not known if the Queen will receive them specifically.

    It IS known, that she has watched The Queen, though.

    Can you imagine that? Watching yourself on screen.

    Wonder what she thought of it. I think I will use whatever little connexions I have, to find out...stay tuned.

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Thu Dec 21, 06:53:00 pm GMT-5  

  • ah, yes...this would be a problem even CGI might not solve.

    OTOH, when has Hollywood ever cared for 'realism'?

    Either Uma, or an ingenue, I say!

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Thu Dec 21, 06:54:00 pm GMT-5  

  • I admire Hitch, but, yes, these seemed to be the writings of "Hootch", his 80-proof altar ego.

    He he he.

    Renato said the same thing.

    BTW, my postie is finally up!

    I shall read, toute-de-suite, D'Artagnan!

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Thu Dec 21, 06:56:00 pm GMT-5  

  • At my sister's urging, I am visiting your site.

    A most hearty welcome to you, Peggy. :)

    Any sister of Ruth Anne, is a sister of mine!

    You should be the replacement for Siskel and Ebert.

    Poor Rog. I have to say that I once saw him here in the Miami Int'l Film Festival, and he was not very kind.

    But you know, some people are standoffish because they're shy. He struck me as one of those kinds.

    AND I thought I saw a bunch of movies.

    Heh. Maybe we can one day plan a trip to one of the bigger film festivals, like Telluride or Sundance.

    We'll see who has the stamina, then! ;)

    I go to movies with my good friend, Anne, who at the time of my separation and divorce from a hubby of 22+ years,

    I'm so sorry, Peggy.

    helped me to be my "breakup buddy" (It's Called a Breakup Because It's Broken - Greg Berhardt).

    My mum, a shrink, might know of this book or programme!

    She sees more than I do...but we love going together. I seriously think I go just for the popcorn.

    I hate popcorn. :)

    (But my mother eats for both of us! I recently bought a candy, since I had never done that before on a visit to the pictures. My dear, ugh. Gimme popcorn, anyday. For the record, it was a Mars Bar)

    However, I agree with the Maternal Optimist that The Holiday needs to be bunched in your excellent listing of flicks to catch.

    Okay. You've both intrigued/browbeaten me enough so that my interest is piqued.

    I shall go! Tonight maybe. Late showing, if I can.

    Anne and I are going Fri/Sat/Sun/Mon to see films.

    That's my girl!

    Watcha planning on watchin'? :)

    I decided to save Rocky for Monday, Christmas Day, since my parents traditionally like catching a flick on Thanksgiving or Christmas Day. And being a modest girl, watching anything Rater R/Certificate 18, is a bit embarrassing. Rocky will do. :)

    She saw Blood Diamond last evening, but I haven't see it yet.

    Well, you read my review. I found DiCaprio oddly engaging, although when he wasn't on screen, or story didn't focus on him, it was a COMPLETELY different movie. Very odd.

    Check it out, when you see it.

    I may go tonight, but not sure if I'll see Holiday again (I'm a die-hard romantic having loved the likes of Titanic - Love Actually and Something's Gotta Give).

    Aww. The thing of it is, I'm not much for romantic comedies, and never have been. ;(

    That is, not the modern ones.

    I'm a sucker for Ninotchka-type classics.

    But, Charlotte's Web may win out, too. Occasionally the "kid" in me surfaces.

    Sooner you than me!

    *the legs, the legs, shiver*

    I believe that we'll see We Are Marshall tomorrow and I have heard nothing but wonderful things for this picture.

    I confess, I love sport-themed movies (Rudy! Rudy!), and never miss one, but even this veteran of Glory Road might be OD'ed.

    Let me know how "Marshall" is. I might be coaxed to watch it.

    The Pursuit of Happyness is awesome. Will Smith did a phenomonal job portraying Chris Gardner (of Milwaukee, WI). I saw it on Sunday.

    The troll-dweebies on IMDB are saying it's a propaganda film for capitalism.

    I replied that so is the US. ;)

    Anyway...I can't wait to see Rocky on Christmas. I believe I'll take my mom to that since she hails from Philly and I think she'll love it.

    She will! I'm sure of it.

    Question: Why are Philadelphians either patrician, and cold, or warm-hearted but rude?

    Loved Pat's though!

    Anne and I took her to see Little Miss Sunshine and the first words out of her mouth were, "do they have to use the f-word all time?" As well as criticizing Alan Arkin for doing coccaine. I told her it's Hollywood, Mom....and if you're going to go to movies w/me...you gotta watch 'em.

    Aww. She sounds like a pip.

    I must say that I have recently taken to watching films with my mother too, for want of a dearth of friends (I have "lost" 5 close ones in 5 years, damn transient Florida).

    It's great, but she does talk throughout which embarrasses me.

    "What happens now?? Will he leave!?"

    Argh.

    Does your mother do the same?

    Well..I have droned on way too long....thanks for this great site!!

    Take care!!


    If you love movies, you're in like Flynn with me.

    Come back, any time, Peggy. :)

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Thu Dec 21, 07:12:00 pm GMT-5  

  • Benning,

    Thanks for the HTML lesson. Can't wait to try out my new skillz.

    Victoria,

    Thanks for the comment on my site. You're a sweetie. Looks like you're getting quite a bit of traffic on this post. Good for you, I say!

    By Blogger Pete, at Thu Dec 21, 08:06:00 pm GMT-5  

  • Looks like you're getting quite a bit of traffic on this post. Good for you, I say!

    Thanks, Pete. :)

    It keeps me going, I daresay. However, something distressing happened to me, and to one of my credit cards today -- after I had lost my purse whilst shopping-til-I-dropping on Wednesday.

    You can imagine the rest of the story, although it's been "solved" -- at least, it's being looked into.

    Bad timing for Christmas, but better this happens now, than in the new year, is what I say.

    Anyway, long story longer, I was going to write up a blogpost tonight, but I'm out of steam.

    Hopefully Saturday.

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Fri Dec 22, 02:06:00 am GMT-5  

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