"Talent is a matter of quantity. Talent does not write one page, it writes three hundred." Jules Renard
Friday, December 31, 2004
FINAL POST OF THE YEAR
"A man's not drunk if he can lay on the floor without holding on." - Joe E. Lewis
Have a Happy New Year!
Wednesday, December 29, 2004
Here is a movie worthy of a couple Oscar nods. The script's well-written and compelling. It reminds us of all those great feats Hughes accomplished and the inner workings of his tragic madness. The directing was great and there is no doubt in my mind you'll walk out of the cinema with portrait of Hughes etched in your mind that you never had before. One acting job stood out above the rest. That was Cate Blanchett's performance as Kate Hepburn. I swear, at one point I realized that I'd forgotten I wasn't watching Hepburn. Don't wait for the DVD on this one. Buy the ticket. It's worth the price of admission.
Tuesday, December 28, 2004
MARIA FULL OF GRACE
I know it is asking a lot...that you watch a movie with English subtitles... but this one is really worth the effort. Maria Full of Grace was wonderfully done and had so many nuances. It's about a girl who decides to act as a drug mule with tragic results. Those nuances I mentioned are especially plentiful when she arrives in America. Lots of little things that have to be hard for an immigrant that normally we wouldn't think about were put into the script. The blend of cultures was nicely done and the acting matched it. This movie got a lot of critical praise at Sundance and Cannes so if you're looking for a high quality movie off the blockbuster beaten path, this would be it.
Monday, December 27, 2004
Sunday night I got a chance to view 'I Robot'. It reminded me of 'Blade Runner' in it's dark feel although it inserted a more 'Hollywood' ending. The special effects lived up to their end and Will Smith did a decent enough acting job. But it's the story that makes this movie. At what point do robots evolve? At what point do humans evolve to merge with higher intelligence? And who can say one will decide the fate of the other? Food for thought.
One theme which repeatedly presented itself was robots dreaming. This is actually a Phillip Dick obsession although 'I Robot' is an Asimov story. If I recall right, Dick's 'Blade Runner' was subtitled 'Do robots dream of electric sheep?'. I've seen more films based on the work of Dick and Asimov than read their books. I'm curious though if there was a belief of dreams connecting with the evolution process? Also, I'm equally curious as to why in the past few years this theme seems to have taken hold.
Sunday, December 26, 2004
EASY TO PLEASE
I'm so easy to please as Santa brought me just what I wanted: A Barnes & Noble gift certificate that will place another book on the shelf, the DVD 'Bourne Supremacy' which will be watched a dozen times in the next month, a pullover which I could use in this freakin weather, and 20 bucks for whatever. Hope your holiday was as good as mine! Now it's back to the rewrites. That 20 might have to go for aspirin....
Friday, December 24, 2004
THE SHEPHERD'S FIELD
On the edge of the village of Beit Sahour, just outside Bethlehem, is a small, slightly run down, Greek Orthodox Church. It marks the place where tradition holds the shepherds were grazing their flocks when the angels appeared to announce the birth of Jesus. These days, the tourists have stayed away and the church (which last I heard was still open) caters to a dwindling flock of it's own as Palestinian Christians emigrate in record numbers.
Inside the Church are remains dating back to the Byzantium Empire. I was fortunate enough to receive a personal tour from the Priest many years ago. There was really nothing special about the building. As archaeological sites go, it doesn't rank as that amazing. I've walked among more thrilling ruins in more desolate places. Still, the empty field - you don't see the sheep these days- and Priest's dedication to upholding the legacy of the location in an odd way reminds me of Linus from Charlie Brown's Christmas when he gets up on the stage and cites the Christmas Story and ends by saying, "That's the real meaning of Christmas Charlie Brown". Peace on Earth... that's the real meaning of Christmas Charlie Brown. Who among us wouldn't camp out in an empty field next to a rundown Church for that?