3D or not 3D… that “seems” to be the question?

Which movie did you see recently that was 3D AND you had to pay for the privilege for doing so? Was it worth it? Really? Let me know, is 3D a quick buck flash in the pan? … or do you think it is the future?


It’s All Swedish To Me!

In honour of our fine young Swedish exchange student,  Jesper, I could not help myself but give you one of the best (ish) movies from Sweden..

Now, I have to say, as a lover of foreign movies, I came to the conclusion that I need to watch them when I am NOT ironing. I do like to wile away the boring ironing times by watching something.. but  as good as I am at  ironing, I cannot for the life of me do that and follow subtitles at the same time. But Gimme, gimme a movie with music and I can be a dancing ironing queen!

Now,  you may be forgiven if you think the best(ish) movie  is “The Girl With The Something Tatoo”  Sorry and all.. but… no.   It’s not. I don’t like graphic movies that come with a warning..  Here is the one I am thinking of, but, my friends, it also comes with a warning.. although not quite in the same frame as “The Girl..” I must tell you, it may still  not be a pretty sight. This one is  from the renowned Swedish Director Lars Hallstrom. Yes, the Director who gave us The Cider House Rules, Chocolat, and Whats Eating Gilbert Grape    gave us this. His first foray into major motion picture making… and one which he  rue’s the day he made. (He admits it!)  For all of us ABBA fans though, we say a huge Thank You For the Movie… even if we thought it was a bit naff as well, but hey, everyone has to start somewhere, right?

 One of the greatest groups of all time,  forever immortalized on the silver screen…

                                                                      ABBA: The Movie.

Now, for all you people who have seen “Mamma Mia” on the screen and/or the theater, PLEASE, if there is any justice in the world.. lay off the campy soundtracks and get to the real thing will ya? I love Meryl too… but the Name of the Game my friends, is authentic is best. There are a couple of ways you can do this: You can actually  buy “ABBA The Movie”  It has taken years to become available on DVD , but with protestations over some twenty years (pathetic, I know) it IS now available. Failing that,  there is always ABBA: Song Star, which is like karaoke but  is also a  game and you get to sing with them on the screen, because, you know, they were the group that paved the way with the original movie video. Yes, I know, Queen did the scaramoosh, vandango thing… but it was ABBA that started the video for each single they released.

So Lars, this girl with the grayish golden hair thanks you, and, whenever  I (have a) dream, I can be transported once again to my youth, even when I’m ironing. 

Go On,  Take a Chance on it…

Midnight in Paris….sigh..

Do you have a favourite decade? Ever thought that you should have been born in another time and era?

Big Band Theory 

I always thought the 40’s in America would have been fun. Frank Sinatra, the Big Band Sound, Duke Ellington, Casablanca, those great clothes. Clubs, immortalized on the silver screen, as always having somewhere to sit, always terrific music, backing a great female singer in a glamorous dress that looked like Rita Hayworth, AND… they didn’t have to shout over the speakers to make themselves heard. Now that’s a club. So much more civilized.

Americans In Paris

Right off the bat, I saw the hotel I stayed in during the opening sequence!  First sigh.. and good start to the movie. Many sighs later (and a little drooling I fear), the  main characters are established and reasons explained why they are in Paris. Rachel McAdams dizzily breezes in and out playing Inez, who seems happier doing anything but relax and enjoy the view magnifique. Owen Wilson as Gil, is smitten with Paris,  particularly the 20’s era.  As a struggling writer, he senses the opportunity for inspiration. She, on the other hand, has no time for the supposed romanticism of the city. McAdams  brings a sharp, clipped performance as she takes on the testy fiancé. Owen, bless him,  plays like a younger version of the director as he dithers and fumbles over his words, but brings his doe eyed wonder to the fore and I loved it. As Inez swans off dancing with friends one night after dinner, Gil wanders the streets of Paris alone, and as midnight approaches,  begins to see Paris in a whole new light.

If you’re like Gil, you will love this fun little romantic movie, and appreciate the great little take-away at the end. If your’e  like Inez, the movie,  and maybe even Paris, will be lost on you.

Watch for Michael Sheen and Adrien Brody particularly. Loved ’em.

Oh, those summer nights…

The kids may be getting back to school, but don’t let me hear you say summer is over! Summer will be hanging around officially until September the 23rd, and it still wants to play.

 The great thing about the kids getting back to school, is getting back into a routine and fitting in time for stuff I would like to do. One of my most favourite things to do, besides a spell at the pool of course, is  think back to a time during my youth and what summer movie I used to go and see.. The BIG summer block buster, yeah, even the ones that stunk.

The phenomenon of the summer blockbuster started quite by accident. The one that started it all, the granddaddy and for some, even after all these years.. still the one to beat was JAWS.  Have a read about the impact that one had during the summer of 75! Close on the heels of that beachy delight, was the swashbuckling, game changing Star Wars which forcefully came to town the summer of ’76 and had me queuing for a couple of hours on opening day. (…and I still have the original poster). Summer was never the same again. In eager anticipation, we wanted more and the studios were only to happy to oblige as they concentrated on throwing their lot into big budget  productions.

Here are some that invoke memories for me, and as far as I am concerned, there is not a stinker among them!

 The Empire Strikes Back , Luke’s face changed. Grease, Sitting at the back of the cinema in the dark waiting to see if Livvy could really act.  Die Hard, Bruce who? I  could not take my eyes off the riveting Alan Rickman. Then there was  The Fugitive. Raiders of the Lost Ark . Back to the Future.  To name a few.

Apart from a few sputtering ones over the years, once the summer blockbuster got on a roll, there has been no stopping it.  Including, the stinky ones.

Thankfully, in the advent of the video and DVD, ..and even streaming movies, we can all relive the one’s that will always remain entwined with memories from our summer’s past.

First things first though. I am taking advantage of  the clear blue neighborhood pool with barely a ripple and lots of peace and quiet. A few laps while I pick my flick. Have I other things to do? You betcha. But for me there is no better way to start the school year.

So, give summer it’s due, ignore the fall stuff in the shops, pick your old summer fav and go PLAY!!

Are yer there yet 🙂


Fly Away Home

Until You Spread Your Wings

You’ll Have No Idea How Far You Can Fly….

I took my son to the airport last night. He took off for England for the summer with family.  This is the first time he will be away for more than 2 weeks. Great opportunity for him and I am really happy for him. For me, not so much. Momma is having to learn to let go. As a rising senior, this is surely a foretaste of what is to come.  If what I am feeling now is anything to go by, its leaving a bitter taste and one I do not see  becoming quick to acquire anytime soon.

The term, “Fly Away Home” came to mind. It seemed such a  appropriate statement. After all, we raise kids to be self sufficient and ready for the inevitable. Flying away.  Of course as this is me talking,  it had to have a movie attached to it.

Fly Away Home

Based on a true story of William Lishman, (also one of the writers) who in 1988 made aviation history by leading a flock of geese on flights around his home. The movie version stars Anna Paquin and Jeff Daniels. I watched it again recently. A great PG movie you can watch with your kids. They will be thrilled and even inspired by the story. I, and maybe you as a parent, may see it through different eyes. As the young Anna nurses abandoned goose eggs, she cares for her hatched little ones and watches them grow.  The reality is though, migration is inevitable. It’s time for them to fly.

You can read about the true story  here: http://www.operationmigration.org/work_story.html

Enjoy the movie, maybe even shed a tear and always remember, the days with our little ones may be long, but the years go quickly.  I will take comfort in the fact that migrating birds return….  a little sweet to go with that bitter taste.

The Beautiful Game

So what’s with the title then? Sure sounds like the title of a movie.  Are ya racking your brain trying to figure out what  this is? Of course, you savvy folks out there know the beautiful game is Football. Not soccer, people… football. Proper football.

Football. Made in England, perfected everywhere else. Thankfully, you can see the Beautiful Game every week in the form of  The Barclay’s Premiere League. Where the national team struggle to find form, the  league  is known for being the best in the world. The fans  live it and breathe it. Here, you grow up with the colour of your team in your veins.  Through good and bad times, you support your team to the end.  A breed apart.

Eons ago, I took part in a football game. It was lads v gals.  Everything was going well until the heaven’s opened and it chucked it down. The pitch began to deteriorate into something like chocolate pudding and it wasn’t long before the game started to deteriorate as well. The gals were denied a clear goal by the ball stopping in the mud just before it crossed over the goal line. It was only natural then, that my friend picked it up and threw it in. This signaled a free for all which resembled Rugby more than Football. By the time I got home, part of the winning team I might add, I was unrecognisable and looked like I had been dragged through a hedge backwards in a mud slide. No matter if you’re playing it or just watching it, it’s all about the passion. And we are nothing if not passionate about our game.

On Saturday, my team, Manchester City, take part in the oldest and best domestic Cup competition in the world, the FA Cup. Formed in 1871 from a proposal by the Football Association honorable Secretary Charles Alcock,  “..it is desirable that a Challenge Cup be established for which all clubs belonging to the FA should be invited to compete..”  The stage was set for the David’s of the lower leagues to face the Goliath’s of world class teams… and there have been magical moments in history, when Goliath has indeed fallen.

So now my team takes part in the Cup Final that hopefully see’s them lifting the most venerated Cup in Football history,  and in honor of this, here are two flicks I think are worthy of your time. One is a British movie and the other is a documentary.

The Damned United

Starring Michael Sheen as the famed Nigel Clough, it’s a gritty telling of his short tenure as Leeds United Football Club manager.  Great drama, well told and one of the best British films of  2009.

Kicking It

A  documentary that  follows a group of homeless men to South Africa, to participate in their own international World Cup competition. Narrated  by ColinFarrell.

You can check out this great outreach organisation’s website for more information here.  The Homeless World Cup

  COME ON YOU BLUES !!!!!!!!!!!

Update! …MAJOR Update!   

Manchester City went on to win the FA Cup and they didn’t  stop there.  They smelled success and liked it and went on to win the English Premiere League. Pipping  the mighty Manchester United to the title with the last kick of the game, they go down in football history as providing the most exciting finale  the league is ever likely to see again. Are you listening Hollywood?


Why This Friday is Good ….

Good Friday. I always wondered why it was called that when I was a little girl.  I know some of my friends couldn’t eat meat. But quite honestly, I was more concerned with how many chocolate Easter eggs I was going to get.

Anyway,  didn’t even want to think about it. I mean it’s about the death of Jesus right? How gruesome and as scary as that huge wooly thing that’s supposed to be a bunny that you are about to have your picture taken with.. How on earth could that possibly be Good? Only the chocolate was good. Well, as I found out later, it was because there was a heavenly plan and a purpose.  And that, my friends, was not only good, it was fantastic.

A few years ago, The Passion of the Christ  hit screens everywhere, and I mean everywhere. Even people in the Middle East wanted to see what the controversy was about. It’s hard to believe the movie is seven years old.  The story, however, is timeless.

For over two thousand years, the account of the Easter story has been told and untold numbers have  become followers of Jesus.  There still are, from all corners of the world.  Here is a movie that gives us a glimpse, maybe for the first time, of  just what Jesus did for the sake of mankind.

Vivid and extremely graphic, but beautifully shot, you can almost sense, from all quarters, that here is a project that was handled with respect and honor.  Like the gift it is. A reminder for the follower and a guidepost for the wanderer. Oh yes, Friday is tough, and it IS a tough watch. But make no mistake, this is all  for the Good.

So,  this is your Friday of Friday’s  Flick Pick. The Passion of The Christ. The passion of a God who loved us so much, He  sent His Son into the world to die for us. This may be Friday folks…. but Sunday is coming. No longer on the Cross.  A Risen Christ.

Happy, glorious Easter. …no bunnies, still chocolate …but all Good!