Watching World Walk By: Movies & Books

Am grounded at home this holiday weekend.  Could be all sorts of other places, but … no worries, have to be here so here I am.   Catching up on older movies.  Reading pages that have been calling my name.  General milling about.

The films I’ve seen so far – it’s only Saturday – include In America, August Rush, and Taking Woodstock.

In America (2002)  is actually not new to me, but is one of my favorite movies.  Jim Sheridan directed and co-wrote the screenplay. An Irish family moves to NYC; it is a journey of loss and life.  It is semi-autobiographical.  The performances are perfect, the story is so beautiful and agonizing.  Just take a hammer and repeatedly hit the emotional quadrant of my heart. Special, special, special.  Did I say how special this film is?

August Rush (2007) presents a coincidence.  Ran into this while flipping channels.  It is a modern-day fairy tale, sort of, but it got me in the first few seconds and kept me right up to “The End”.  An orphaned musical prodigy, Oliver Twist  twist.  Of course, the music is fine; personal favorites:  “Raise It Up” and “Dueling Guitars“.  Then I found the director. Kirsten Sheridan.  She would be the daughter of Jim Sheridan (see above) and she co-wrote In America with her dad. No wonder I feel in love with this movie.  That family has some great film genes.  And this movie had me praying for the people inside the television from start to finish.  That is a good movie, in my humble opinion.

Taking Woodstock (2009) is a movie I so wanted to like. So didn’t.  Directed by Ang Lee, this groovy movie is based on memoir by Elliot Tiber and Tom Monte. Have to agree with New York Post critic Stephen Holden; he said TW was a “….thumb-sucking bore”.  Fail.

In other film news, apparently someone who has access to publishing on the page is wondering if Sex and the City 2 will become one of the top ten best sequel films.  Again, in my uneducated opinion, the first Sex in the City film was the epitome of horrid, lamer than a herd of dead horses. Double dumb beyond belief.  Yet said person is wondering if this slop will overtake sequels to The Godfather, Star Wars and Lord of the Rings. to mention a few. REALLY? We are so screwed.  On the other hand, maybe not.  The real Amityville Horror house is for sale. I propose a fundraiser to buy that haunted shack, put anyone who had anything to do with SACT1,2 (director and cast, for sure) inside, and lock the door FOREVER! If you have the same feelings, please join me in this mission.

I am woman, I multitask.  So, while watching movies, of course I read.

Labor Day by Joyce Maynard (2009)  Beautifully written, so much so I have writer envy.  This book, about a Labor Day Weekend in the past, is all about forgiveness, love, and the human spirit.  Have found so many lines of this book quote-worthy.  But you’ll have to read it to find them for yourself.

Recipes for a Perfect Marriage by Morag Prunty (2006) is so unsentimental and well-written.  The wisdom on these pages, regarding relationships, takes my breath away.  Am not finished.  When I do, it’s on to Lit by Mary Karr. While watching Amadeus (1984) again.

So much to do, so little time.