Thursday, November 29, 2007

Sky Blue Sky by Wilco

It took me a while to like this, but now I love it. The last song is beautiful and moving, and I have been known to play it over and over again while driving.

Dan in Real Life (2007)

Dan in Real Life is great. I laughed really hard at least once, and it wasn't even Steve Carell who was funny. I think it might be the feel-good movie of the year.

Disturbia (2007)

I'm not into scary movies, but Disturbia is fun and scary. I liked it.

The Semi-Attached Couple by Emily Eden

It's a strange title, yes, especially considering it was published in 1860 (though written much earlier, I believe). Along the lines of Jane Austen, it's more complex than her novels, and involves a married couple as well as other couples becoming engaged. I was surprised and delighted by it. Almost all of the characters change and learn over the course of the story. I loved it.

The Road by Cormac McCarthy

The Road is about a father and son traveling through a post-apocalytpic America. It's pretty intense and also very good. Jon read it first and I think he ought to comment.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen

Now I've finally read all of Jane Austen's completed novels. I thought Northanger Abbey was delightful. And I just discovered that there's a BBC production. Yay!

Year of the Dog (2007)

I wanted to like this. The acting is superb, sometimes the writing also. Laura Dern is brilliant as an overprotective mother, whispering suspected wrongs committed by the nanny and carefully avoiding the topic of death around the kids. Other characters are interesting and well-developed. And I want to like a movie that shows the main character's journey to veganism and supporting animal rights. But the journey seems shallow and insufficient compared to the progress she should have made with human relationships.

Blades of Glory (2007)

I don't need to see this kind of movie very often, but Blades of Glory definitely has its moments. My favorite line, delivered by Chazz Michael Michaels (Will Farrell): "Hey. They laughed at Louis Armstrong when he said he was gonna go to the moon. Now he's up there, laughing at them."

Wives and Daughters (1999)

This BBC production of Elizabeth Gaskell's Wives and Daughters is wonderful! I enjoyed the book, and this miniseries took it to a whole new level. I loved it.

Monday, November 19, 2007

My Grandfather's Son by Clarence Thomas

Clarence Thomas was raised by his grandfather, hence the title. His story of his rise from poverty to the Supreme Court is fascinating and inspiring. I was surprised by how much I liked it.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer

It took a while to get into this one, but I did finally. I don't know if I'll be excited about the next installment or not.

Bundle of Joy? by Ariella Papa

This was pretty mediocre.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Benny and Omar by Eoin Colfer

Entertaining and surprisingly serious young adult fiction about an Irish boy whose family moves to Tunisia. The Irish slang is pretty heavy and sometimes had me reading things twice (I had to look up hurling on wikipedia; it's an Irish sport featuring a ball called a sliotar, pronounced “slither.”) But I liked it. Also, it have some heavy subject matter for young kids (Omar is an orphaned Tunisian whose family history is pretty crazy, among other things).