Sunday, July 16, 2006

3 x (2 Reviews)

Movie Reviews

I got to see Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest last night. Arrrgh! Parts of it felt too silly, like when 3 guys are having a sword fight inside of a giant wheel that’s rolling down a hill. First, it’s silly that they’re even able to fight each other, when normal people would be holding on for dear life and/or breaking their necks. Second, the wheel would just run into a tree and fall over instead of rolling straight through the forest at break-neck speed. But when I let go and suspended my disbelief, it was fun – definitely exciting to see it on the big screen. The fish-ghost-pirates are wonderful; I would have loved to have been on that design team! Johnny Depp is wonderful, especially the way he runs. I can add him to my list of actors with good physical humor. (Rowan Atkinson and Jim Carey are the other two so far.) The ending doesn’t feel like an ending. I understand their desire to create a cliff-hanger to encourage everyone to go see the third one (Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End), but that’s not an excuse for this petering-out. Paul said it felt like half a movie. I heartily agree, matey.

The movie I really enjoyed this weekend was Bubba Ho-tep, which Scott and I watched on Friday night. It contains a good deal of absurdity, and it’s absurdly good. It takes place in a Texan rest home where Elvis and JFK live. They have to battle an Egyptian mummy. There’s campy B-rate horror but really good suspense. There are neat camera shots and great colors. There are musings on the meaning of life. Rent it!

Book Reviews

I finished The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald this morning. We’re going to see it performed at the Guthrie Theater in September, so I wanted to reread it. I last read it sometime in middle school, but I couldn’t remember any of the plot. I think I’m going to go back read it again this week. It’s a short book, and I feel like I’ll get a lot more out of it the second time through. I feel like I’ve gotten “bad” at literature, like I’ve forgotten how to think about how symbolism works. That bothers me, so this might serve as a good little brush up. Where’s a book group when you need one? (Actually, for all of you readers out there: Let me know if you want to read and discuss Gatsby. Seriously. What’s up with T.J.Eckleberg?)

This afternoon, I started The Non-Designer’s Type Book by Robin Williams and am thoroughly enjoying it. Kenneth gave it to me yesterday. He’s a graphic designer, and I’m toying with the idea of learning graphic design, and he said this book was one that got him started on his career. I can see why. Reading it makes me want to go out and do it. (My first project will be redesigning this blog. I’ll need to figure out more HTML before major changes occur though.)

Miscellaneous Reviews

I got to go swimming yesterday! Armand brought Brooke and Kenneth and I out to Scotts Run. It’s a short drive from the city and then a short hike from the road. There are enough rocks in the river and fish dams built between the rocks that it’s pretty easy to make your way out to the middle of the Potomac. There, you can sit right in the rapids, so it feels like a jacuzzi and sounds much nicer. A serenade, Kenneth said. Absolutely perfect on a still, muggy day. We ate our picnic lunch, basked in the sun and talked about all the great blue herons we saw.

Scott and I visited Busboys and Poets today, down at 14th and V. I’ve been meaning to go there for a while, and this afternoon’s need for caffeine and air-conditioning provided the perfect opportunity. Good pizza, good espresso, and a server who let us sit and read (and nap, in Scott’s case) long after we had finished eating make me pretty excited about going back.

1 comment:

peekp said...

I have read The Great Gatsby a couple of times and wouldn't mind reading it again - it is quite short. One nice thing about it being so short is that it made an excellent movie that *exactly* follows the book. Robert Redford as Gatsby and an impossibly young Sam Waterston as Nick. Highly recomended!