Robert Frost

The best way out is always through.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Movies Galore!

Happy New Year dear friends and fellow bloggers!  I know, tsk, tsk, to me for not blogging a bit.  As much as I was itching to blog, I barely kept up with the everyday things at home.  I fully intended to recap our December too, but after a bit of a hard year we took full advantage of the quiet moments in December.  Time we also all spent catching up on movies, old and new.  Actually we saw more movies the two weeks around Christmas than I have seen all year...so here is my round up...first of course...


We went the first day it was out and took my Dad who was a HP newbie.  I loved it for sure, but my Dad who is not into the series, nor any kind of movies with their own "lore" said he was lost yet the story was intriguing.  The final installment is in July and I will save my raves for then, but if you have read my blog before you know I am so very, very biased about this series that, of course the
VERDICT: A MUST SEE for those who enjoy Harry Potter
SECRETARIAT (saw it in November)....
going to have to first state that I am an absolute sucker for underdog stories: Rudy, Invincible, The Natural, Babe, uh, hello, Seabiscuit....don't like watching most sports in real life, but put it on the little or big screen and give it an underdog and I am watchin' it.  Diane Lane is the womanly, yet formidable Penny Chenery, wife/mother of 3 who in 1969 takes over her father's stable of breeding horses and puts everything on the "underdog" Secretariat.  Guess what happens?  Well of course we all know, but the joy is in the journey of faith in the face of trials.  This movie had me from the verse spoken at the beginning to the hymn rejoicing at the end...Oh, Happy Day! 
VERDICT: Highly recommend, and will see it again..


This movie did not get great reviews but I was charmed by the previews and even more delighted when I saw it back in June.  But when Lou (my lovely Mother in Law) was staying with us over Christmas week, I knew this was one Action/Comedy/Romance flick she would appreciate.  And she loved it. It was pushed as an action movie and has a couple of sharp sequences but hello, what have we NOT seen action wise in these days of CGI and multimillion dollar blowups...no big surprises here in that arena. But I cannot tell you how much I appreciated the banter, the fun it seemed to have with the casual action, and the rapport between Cameron Diaz and Tom Cruise. 
VERDICT: pass me the popcorn, I want to see it again

 This was so very hyped for the holiday season as the must purchase DVD and I had yet to see it.  As we wrapped gifts, we watched it on Pay per view.  Sophia liked it and I thought it was a fitting final chapter to the heart-tugging series but I don't have raves about it.  Maybe the hype got my expectations too high but ..
VERDICT: It was a good finish but I don't need to see it again

Again a pay per view selection (since we saw it when it came out in 3D in November 2009) for Lou.  This is something else I am a sucker for, a Christmas Carol retelling and this one is up there, but my guilty pleasure favorite is still A Muppets Christmas Carol
with Michael Caine.  This Robert Zemekis version was very nice and was especially cool visually in 3D but honestly, sometimes the CGI characters are kind of eerie, so
VERDICT: Quite nice, but for more chuckles with your morality tale see A Muppets Christmas Carol

SHERLOCK HOLMES (first viewing Jan 2010):
I have always liked the Sherlock Holmes mysteries in its various forms (Basil Rathbone, Jeremy Brett) but lets face it, this character is so very brilliant, aloof, and lacking in social graces that he is not the most attractive protagonist.  But in the hands of Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law, Holmes and Watson (respectively) are a stupendous buddy team.  I certainly enjoyed the fact that in this version Watson is an equal to Holmes and not the almost-clueless step-behind side kick.  Plus the music is so spot on, I say thank you to Guy Ritchie (director) for this fresh and lively take on an old favorite.
VERDICT: so good I am gonna buy it

After the hype let down of Toy Story 3, I was going to opt out of this one family Christmastime cinema experience (I had post Christmas clean up to do people!), but I am so glad I didn't.  We saw this in our small town old timey movie theater with a full house of all ages and I was completely delighted in this new version of the tale of Rapunzel. 
VERDICT: well worth the price and time

JANE EYRE: (2006, Masterpiece Theater with Toby Stephens and Ruth Wilson)

What did we watch New Year's Eve? This beautiful, hands down best version EVER of Jane Eyre.  As far as period romances go, I loves me my Jane Austen but over all those words-made-to-film this story and little screen gem are tops.  In most other versions Mr. Rochester is too brute-ish and Jane such a simpering/frail girl, that it is hard to see their romance and attraction.  But here Mr. Stephens fleshes out Rochester as a hard, broken-hearted man drawn to the quiet but strong character in the plain but lovely Jane (hired governess to his young ward).  Ruth Wilson is entrancing as Jane, who tho' raised unloved and in an orphanage is always upright in character and so full of hope that you cheer for her along the way. 
Here's a clip (only a bit of a spoiler if you have never read or seen Jane Eyre)
VERDICT: of all the movies listed, it is my top recommendation.

Happy watching, and I love recommendations if you have any.  Blessings to you this New Year. 

In Christ,


A Tale of Two Cities said...

Thanks for the recommendations. I enjoyed Tangled with my granddaughter over the holidays, and saw The King's Speech with my hubby. Great show--you should consider it. Before the show, they previewed a new version of Jane Eyre coming out soon. You might want to take a peek at a trailer online.

Happy New Year,

Jenny said...

Hello Debi!! I do want to see The King's Speech but they have yet to show it in Waco, and I also want to see True Grit. Thanks for the heads up on the new Jane Eyre. I took a look at the trailer, but in the brief instances of dialogue the new Jane doesn't come off as well as Ruth Wilson's portrayal....yes, I am so biased. Happy New Year to you too!

Mademoiselle Poirot said...

Bonjour Jenny. Thank you so much for your lovely comment on my blog, it made my day and I don't mind it when people "lurk" around my blog ;-) When I wrote the post I didn't think that people would be so sympathetic to such a silly little thing and even own up to feel the same way, so that's come as a real surprise.

Anyway, the Muppets Christmas Carol is a must every Christmas eve in my house so I'm absolutely with you on that one. Watching the new Harry Potter at the cinema with my son (he's 12) was worth it just for his reaction...

Wishing you a great week & Love from London xo

Jenny said...

Hello M. Poirot! Thank you loads for the follow...that certainly made my day. Hopefully in 2011 I will have another follower just to feel all nice and tucked in with the even 20...we shall see. Love from the "boonies of Texas"

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Dearest Jenny!

OH I LOVE YOUR REVIEWS! As I was looking at your profile, I was charmed to see that you too love British comedies! I don't know why, but I howl with laughter at them...they are a hoot. AND I MUST SEE SECRETARIAT! I LOVE HORSE MOVIES! And Knight and Day was great...I loved that yellow dress and boots that Cameron Diaz wore!!!

Thank you Jenny for visiting my post and loving my blues....I just love that color!


Happy day, Anita

Rebecca Ramsey said...

Love the list! Happiest of New Years to you!
Did you watch the first night of Downton Abbey on Masterpiece Theater? It was wonderful!

Sally Annie Magundy said...

Hi Jenny!
It was so nice to see your name in my email! I'm so glad you enjoyed True Grit - wasn't the young girl FANTASTIC! Oh boy howdy, what a career she has in front of her.
I'm with you, and actually I was even more disappointed than you with Toy Story 3.
I'm pretty sure we saw the latest Jane Eyre (did I hear there's going to be yet another one or was I dreaming???) on Masterpiece Theater or maybe I'm losing my mind?!
Speaking of which, how'd you like episode 2 of Downton Abbey?! Whoa! Getting exciting, huh?!
Happy happy week to you,

Anne in Oxfordshire said...

Hello Jenny , sorry I have not been over for a while :-( bad blogger for a few months.:-( I am not much good at going to the cinema or watching films .. I am very choosy , like to watch something that will make me smile but I cannot sit for a long time, I get bored :-) :-) bit like a child does .. but then I am the Peter Pan sign of the Zodiac .. Gemini...


Take care and have a super weekend :-) xox

ParisBreakfasts said...

Fun list and I love yr taste in music so the movies MUST be good!
Carolg snowed in

Mademoiselle Poirot said...

Salut Jenny, thanks for your lovely comments, wishing you a great week, Love from London xo

mangocheeks said...

Oooh haven't heard of Secretariat - will have to keep my eyes out for it. Happy New Year to you.

Jenny said...

Anita...I love movie reviews and will be glad to share more if I have the chance...withthe winter keeping us home more i just might get the chance.

Becky! I am so glad you stopped by and YES...Downton was fabulous and there were even times I was commenting at the screen...cant wait til the next installment.

Sally,,hoping you are better and I still need to see Larkrise to Candleford...after you mentioned it it seems I here it all over the blogosphere now.

Anne, I know you are taking a break but thank you for the visit and I know what you mean...I can sit and watch a good film for a while but my mom in law is always up and going too when we watch a film together.

Carol, Thank for the music shout out and do take care.

M. Poirot, so happy you stopped by and sorry for my laziness in blogging. I have tons on my mind to put out there, but then I critique myself so much I don't end up posting it at all. My own little hang up. Your blog is creatively inspirational and I hope you don't get too bogged down by the weather.

Mangocheeks, thank you so much for stopping by and commenting...I stopped by your blog and wow. I have been hoping to get more in the know with recipes for veg and your site is completely helpful.

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Dearest Jenny, thank you for coming to visit me yesterday! I would have come earlier, but after school, I had to rush home to help my husband move furniture into our FINALLY FINISHED two new rooms that were added on during Christmas! I will be posting on the progress soon. Your encouragement and faith are precious and the story you told about the book your read just reminds me ever so much to take each day and make ONE SPECIAL attempt, for no matter who, and do or say something special. What a blessing to be able to do what this man did, and we can all do it!!!! Oh, thank you for giving me this encouragement.

May you have a wonderful day and be touched by a special angel!!! Anita

Sally Annie Magundy said...

Hi Jenny!
ACK! I'm still feeling lousy over here! The good news is that they moved my dad out of ICU and onto the "regular" floor today. yippie!

Oh! I've got the sick person's version of cabin fever - I am so bored that I am about to lose my mind, so silly me, I created a Valentine blog this morning to amuse myself. You can check it out here:

Can't wait for the second season of Downton Abbey, the end felt so abrupt to me - did it to you?

Oh! Speaking of which, my husband read on some Masterpiece Theater message board that stinkin PBS shortened the series for American audiences!!! Rebecca Eaton didn't think the pace was lively enough for us or some other outrageously stupid thing. ARGH ARGH ARGH!

So we'll be renting the er, COMPLETE English version - I think it's on iTunes, my husband said.

And we're renting "Never Let Me Go" to watch tonight - so curious to see if it watches as creepy, as it read.

Hope you and your dear ones are having a lovely weekend! Thank you so much for all of your care and concern, and prayers and good wishes and friendship - you are a big sweetie pie and very dear.


Frenchy said...

Oh WOW ! thanks for this ! I know what to watch now !!
Hope you are all doing good. Thank you for saying hi, i just love your visits !


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