Saturday, July 17, 2010


Last night, George and I saw Inception. It's a triumph to get him to the movie theaters these days - he usually says, "Let's wait until it comes out on video" which means we'll probably never see it.

But, we did go see Inception. George, who had only heard David Edelstein's negative review on NPR, had very low expectations of the movie. I was more optimistic (even though I'm one of the few people, it seems, who does not swoon over Leonardo di Caprio). It is my kind of movie - visual, compelling, fast-paced. True, there wasn't a lot new here. True, some of the dialog was clunky. I don't think it is the best movie OF ALL TIME. But still... it was fun, it was interesting, and it was complex enough not to be boring or pointless. Some of the dream sequences were so fascinating, particularly when Dom (di Caprio) and Ariadne (Ellen Page) share a dream for the first time. I think the movie is worth seeing simply for the visual landscape.

I believe a fairer, more accurate, review by Lisa Schwartzbaum, appeared in Entertainment Weekly - it certainly reflects my reaction: despite the flaws, "I can't wait to go back."

Thursday, July 15, 2010

"One Day" by David Nicholls

One Day (Vintage Contemporaries Original)There is a point in the future where even the worst disaster starts to settle into an anecdotes, and he can see the potential for a story here.

One Day...loved it, loved it, loved it. The writing is at turns beautiful and at turns hilarious. I couldn't put it down, but when I was finished, I felt such a sense of loss: I wasn't at all ready for it to end.

The novel opens in Edinburgh in 1988, July 15, St. Swithin's Day, the day after graduation, with Emma Morley and Dexter Mayhew, drunk, in bed, awkward after meeting the day before at a graduation party. The novel returns to the pair on each July 15 through 2007. While this could easily have been a gimmick - and as you know, I hate gimmicks - the book flows naturally and the temporal jump feels simply like a unique, interesting, and unobtrusive narrative structure. It doesn't at all feel as though Nicholls is trying to shoehorn important events into this one day; instead, it is very natural, and, at times the action is understated or ordinary.

Although the characters in the novel are older than I, they are close enough in age that I felt an affinity with them, especially Emma, who has several mis-starts and at one point escapes to Paris because "London has become one big crèche." It's so painful to see the pain of the characters - I felt like I was suffering with them as they faced challenges from work, family, relationships. When they were happy and successful, I was happy for them.

I don't want to say to much about the trajectory of the plot: I want you to experience that for yourself. I believe you will be glad if you do.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Today's Doctor Who-ism

·        The Doctor: I thought you might be in trouble. 
Craig: Thanks. Oh, if I ever am, you can come and save me with my toothbrush.

Today's Doctor Who-ism is really just an excuse to have a photo of shirtless Matt Smith, the Eleventh Doctor, on my blog! This episode, the eleventh of the fifth series, has the Doctor impersonating a human to find out what is going on in the apartment above Craig's. His undercover work has him posing as Craig's flatmate, and, to protect himself from the unknown upstairs, he cannot use his sonic screwdriver or any alien technology. I found the episode hilarious as the Doctor really doesn't blend into daily life well! It's not as obvious as some aliens exposed to earth scenarios (e.g., Data on Star Trek Next Generation), but just as satisfying! I loved watching him soccer...go to work! Another amazing episode.

Doctor Who on BBC America

Monday, July 12, 2010

Mosaic Monday: Ellis

I didn't quite have enough "Ellis" word photographs to finish out my collage, so I added a couple that I took when Grandma and I visited Ellis Island in May 2007.

Ellis Collage

Thanks to Mary at the Little Red House for hosting Mosaic Monday!
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