Between the craziness of final exams and the holidays, I've barely had time to write. However, I have had plenty of time to think, feel, laugh, enjoy, and soak up a little bit more of life in general.
Aside from spending time with good friends, in town and out of town, I went to see 5 films in the theater.
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, Doubt, Yes Man, The Reader, and Seven Pounds.
It's a lot, I know!!
I wasn't planning to see that many. Maybe 2 at the most. Normally, I'm not one to hit the movie theater every friday night, or even once a month for that matter. I can't claim to be a film buff or anything, but I really enjoy good films with amazing musical scores, rock solid acting, and heavy with themes, suspense, or thought provoking commentary about life that hangs with you for the rest of the week. I also tend to like sad films, where everything doesn't always work out ok, neatly tied up with a bow stamped on top. Cause thats not how real life is. If a movie makes me tear up or get goosebumps (the good kind, not the scared kind), that means I really really liked it.
With the exception of Yes Man, these movies were particularly dark, sad, and intense, but nonetheless hopeful, inspiring, and full of riveting performances and musical scores.
Two of these films, The Boy in the Striped Pajamas & The Reader, were about the Jewish Holocaust and its unbearable tragedy. I couldn't believe the ending in 'Pajamas'. Actually I won't give it away although I originally planned to discuss it....it's just too...insane. but oh so real. any alternative ending just would not have worked. Just go see it.
Doubt: its like watching a play on a screen. which is basically how it was born, because it is a play turned into a film. Amazing performances by Philip Seymour Hoffman (when has he ever let us down?), Meryl Streep, Amy Adams, and Viola Davis. Not a theater must-see, but definitely worth renting or net-flixin'
Yes Man: Heck Yes! Jim Carrey, always a pleasure. Murray from Flight of the Conchords -"prisint". Funny, cute, inspiring, I think a little therapeutic for us all. Basically the whole thing was filmed in Silverlake, Los Angeles, so I was constantly whispering to poor Eric during this one and excitedly pointing to the screen every time they went to a new scene and I saw more of my old stomping grounds: Spaceland, Elysian Park, Griffith Observatory, etc. I think I walked out of that new york city theater even more sure that I'm....probably going to move back oneday soon. I love the southwest.
The Reader: pretty racy at some points, considering it's about an affair between a 30's ish woman and 15 year old boy in Berlin 1958. Love love love Kate Winslet, but that's just me. She is so convincing. It was so impressive the way they aged her character. At one point, she's playing a 66 year old woman across from Ralph Fiennes' 40's character and in reality, it's reversed, as Winslet is in her early 30's and Fiennes is 46.
Seven Pounds: wowza. talk about intense. I had a hard time keeping quiet during this one. Will Smith was spectacular. I wish they went into his backstory more. I found myself wanting to get more inside his head. Is that just the therapist in me? Such a killer movie title. I want to name my first born after it. Or least have it be the kid's weight.
Classes start this week. I have 5 of them.
I just got Rob Bell's and Don Golden's latest book today in the mail "Jesus Wants to Save Christians". I read the back cover and started feeling all giddy. It's almost 1am and I haven't even finished reading Sex God, Rob Bell's other book, but I'm determined to start Jesus Wants to Save Christians tonight too.
Here's the back cover sneakpeek:
There is a church in our area that recently added an addition to their building which cost more than $20 million. Our local newspaper ran a front-page story not too long ago revealing that one in five people in our city lives in poverty.
This is a book about those two numbers.
It's a book about faith and fear, wealth and war, poverty, power, safety, terror, Bibles, bombs, and homeland insecurity; it's about empty empires and the truth that everybody's a priest; it's about oppression, occupation, and what happens when Christians support, animate, and participate in the very things Jesus came to set people free from.
It's about what it means to be a part of the church of Jesus in a world where some people fly planes into buildings while others pick up groceries in Hummers.