Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Recently Watched: Virgin Suicides, Morning Glory, & Eat Pray Love

One of my favorite things about cooking is watching movies and TV shows while cooking because just watching movies and TV shows by yourself and not doing anything creative seems like a waste most days...also when do I otherwise have two hours to devote just to movie watching? There are Bible studies to be doing, books to edit, books to read, pictures to take, pictures to see my dilemma.

So I had a bunch of food prep to do this past week and recently a lot of files to move around on my new Mac and here's what I watched.

The Virgin Suicides: As the name suggests, this movie is about a string of suicides, which is a gruesome subject but this is a thoughtful, if underdeveloped movie about confinement, society, and the allure of the unknown. The five Lisbon girls grow up in a suburban neighborhood in Michigan during the 70s and while they go to school, they are mostly kept under lock and key by their strict Catholic parents. Their beauty and their seclusion make the already beautiful girls  more alluring, even more so after the youngest daughter inexplicably commits suicide. The film is narrated by a neighbor of the Lisbons who has since grown up but cannot shake the nostalgia or mystery surrounding the girls. He and his friends track down every piece of information they can find to try to figure out what lead to the family's demise and to put their own haunted memory of the girls to rest. While much is left unknown, the film does adroitly capture the time period (great soundtrack) and a feeling of angst, loneliness, and mystery that comes with both memories and tragedy. I'm very tempted to read the book...

Morning Glory: A nice, not too sappy, feel good movie with Rachel McAdams who I can't help but like. McAdams' character is a producer for an early morning TV program when she gets the boot due to budget cuts. Crushed because her dream is to be a TV producer, she hunts for a new job and eventually gets one at the failing morning program of a major network (think a step down from CBS's morning show). She's almost doomed to fail with no co-anchor for Diane Keaton's character, an extremely corny weatherman, and no budget. When she lands a begrudging Dan Rather-esque Harrison Ford, she has to figure out a way to win him over, boost ratings, and learn to do something other than watch the news at all hours. I really liked this movie. It had real heart and some gumption and best of all, humor. Sweet and as I said, hardly sappy at all. There was a little romance but I liked that the center of the story was about a woman who gets a crack at her dream...ok now I'm being sappy. In case anyone thought this was a new version of Up Close and Personal...never fear. The romantic bits are nothing to do with Harrison Ford.

Eat Pray Love: You've probably all seen this. Woman goes to find herself after a failed marriage and learns to let go and to forgive herself. Having never read the book (which I hear can be annoyingly self-centered), I didn't have much expectation about this movie. It was interesting. Not as funny as I thought it might be and definitely a bit self-centered, but an ok movie. I definitely disagreed with a lot of the mumbo jumbo advice she got from religious gurus 1, 2, and 3 but I could also understand the desire to get away and live, so if anyone wants to buy me a ticket to Italy, Bali, or India I might take you up on it. Will not be reading this book.

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