Sunday, August 24, 2008

Movies I Recommend

These are my top ten movies....sorta....I mean I do love all of these movies to a totally irrational degree. But there might be other movies I love almost as well. These are the ones that made the cut today. To read Shannon's movies or her take on my list please visit her blog tomorrow when we will have another blog there. And by the way if you go to rotten tomatoes and type in my movies, nothing got less than a 70% approval rating and most were between 90 and 100% (in fact two of my movies got a 100% proving I must have incredibly good taste). Mamma Mia only got a 52% - so that means that while 52% of the people liked Mamma Mia - 48% (that's almost every other person!) thought it was a rotten tomato. I'm just saying.

This is a classic 80s flick brought to us by the Fantasic Mr. John Hughes who was also responsible for 16 Candles, Breakfast Club, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Some Kind of Wonderful, etc. All fabulous movies. But Pretty in Pink holds a special place in my heart. I soooo wanted to BE Molly Ringwald in that movie. And have Andrew McCarthy as my boyfriend. And drive a Carmen Ghia. And have Duckie as my best friend. And work in a record shop. And shop vintage clothes. And be the coolest person on the planet.

Favorite Quote from Pretty in Pink: "Blaine? Blaine? That’s not a name! That’s a major appliance!"

One of two movies on this list staring my boyfriend, Mr. John Cusack. Mr. Cusack has made a lot of great movies and I could do a whole top 10 list of just his movies (The Grifters, Max, Identity, Better Off Dead, The Sure Thing, Say Anything, Grosse Point Blank, True Colors and America's Sweethearts) but if only two of his movies can make it on to this list then Grosse Point Blank has to be one of them. Any movie that I constantly quote in my life and my 18 year old quotes constantly is a totally cool movie (also because my son is really smart he thinks this is the best movie ever as well). This movie is smart and funny and hip and self-aware and all of the things a great 90s movie with 80s nostaligia should be. If you haven't seen it, you have no idea!


Marty: I'm a professional killer.
Paul: Do you have to do postgraduate work for that?

I sometimes really love foreign films. There's something so great about watching a film in a language that you don't speak and spending the first 5 or 10 minutes reading the subtitles and then getting all the way to the end of the movie and realizing that you did not read any subtitles at all...or did you? Yeah, you did, but the movie was so great you got totally caught up in it and you thought you were understanding french for a full 2 hours. This is that kind of movie. And it's sooo beautiful, it's almost heartbreaking. Everything is rich greens and oranges and reds and yellows. Warm Warm Warm. And the character of Amelie is so engaging and innocent and wonderful. It's absolutely lovely. A movie to restore your hope in humanity.

Quote: These are hard times for dreamers.

Say Anything. This movie gets 100% on Rotten Tomatoes for good reason. NO ONE doesn't like this movie. I happen to love it. Talk about restoring hope in humanity the entire subtext of this movie is that love makes the world go round, everything works out in the end, good conquers all, etc. etc. But it does it in the totally charming and not syrupy and non-saccharine way that doesn't make you want to stab your eyes out while you're watching it. It makes you want to fall in love and stay that way. Get a cool boyfriend like Lloyd Dobbler and have a happy life forever. I married my Lloyd Dobbler so there you go. (AND Kirk used to dress like Lloyd too so there's that whole trench coat thing with the punk tshirts...which is why I still like it when he wears his CLASH shirt, but I digress)

Favorite Quote (and Lloyd is infinitely quotable too):
Lloyd Dobler: I don't want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don't want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed. You know, as a career, I don't want to do that.

This one is kind of obscure. Not very many people saw came out in the mid 80s and it's a love story with Meryl Streep and Robert DiNero. I have to say I thought it was very romantic but also very realistic. There are some of the most incredibly romantic and heart-pulling scenes where you are so angst ridden about what is going on with this movie you're just pulling for these people with all your heart while worrying about them at the same time and maybe just as unsure as they are about what is going on and whether it should be going on or not. I love this movie because it makes me feel something everytime. And oddly, always leaves me happy, though it's not sappy at all. That's a hard trick to pull off.

Not a real "quote" type of movie. In fact, it's kind of quiet and it's one of the things I love about it.

Uhhh....speaking of obscure....Christ Stopped at Eboli is pretty darned obscure. I saw it at BYU on campus at the French and Italian Cinema Series during the summer of 1987. I loved it so much I went back three more times that week and sat through it for 3 hours each time (it's a long movie). It's beautiful and moving and sad and thoughtful and I just couldn't watch it enough times. Christ stopped at Eboli is about a painter who is also a surgeon who is exhiled to a small village in the mountains of Italy after he is exposed as a anti-fascist. The title refers to the Italians saying that even Christ never ventured further up the road than Eboli, which is the last town of "civilization" - the town the painter is exiled to is past Eboli. Again, you'll think you learned to speak Italian and you'll leave the movie feeling you'd like to visit Italy again and again.

Another foreign film. This one is Swedish. Kurt Vonnegut is quoted as saying "My Life as a Dog" is my favorite movie. Any movie that Vonnegut says is his favorite has to be pretty awesome. And it IS. It's a coming of age drama - if I tell you it's about a little boy who's mom is dying of cancer and he has to go off and live with relatives in another part of Sweden - that's not going to make you want to go see it, is it? Yeah, I didn't think so but you SHOULD see it anyway. Just take my word for it. It's little gem of a film. Honest.

No quotes because I don't speak Swedish (well, I know a girl is a "Flicka" and I can count to 20 but one of my best friends in elementary school had a bi-lingual home I spent a lot of time in and her mom's first language was swedish...but that doesn't help much in this case)

This movie is perfection. I love Sophia Coppola's movies. Scarlet Johanssen and Bill Murry fall in love while they are both in Japan. Except their love is completely innocent and never fully realized. But it's so great to watch it happen. Sophia's movies tend to be kind of quiet too - I guess I really like that feel in a movie where it's slow and quiet and contemplative. To be honest, I've met people who don't really like this movie. But I don't get it. I think they must have watched the first 10 minutes, didn't get it right away and lost patience. Stick it out to minute 15 and I swear you'll love it.

Muriels Wedding. An Australian movie so no subtitles to bother with - this is the movie that Mamma Mia wanted to be and couldn't even approach becoming. This movie used ABBA's songs as a logical plot point of the movie. You root so hard for Muriel the whole time and there's the whole happy ending thing except maybe not the happy ending you were planning on but even better thing going on. LOVE it.

The Graduate is a totally classic and awesome movie about adult onset angst. Benjamin is every one of us who wondered why were in such a hurry to become an adult. The Simon and Garfunkle soundtrack is simply awesome and you can never tire of watching this movie. Plus there's a boatload of symbolism here courtesy of director Mike Nichols. I notice something new everytime I watch it. Totally quotable too.

Fave Quote: Mr. Braddock: Ben, what are you doing?
Benjamin: Well, I would say that I'm just drifting. Here in the pool.
Mr. Braddock: Why?
Benjamin: Well, it's very comfortable just to drift here.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

House Beautiful

Lately I've been looking through a lot of interior/exterior design magazines for inspiration. We're getting ready to do some new design options with the backyard sometime in the next 5 or 6 months and I have to spend a lot of time thinking about something before I can commit to it. Sometimes all the options are a bit overwhelming to me.

So I've been reading Domino and House Beautiful and Phoenix Magazine, etc. looking for ideas.

And it's making me sort of irritated with my own house.

There are times when I like what I've done with the house and times when I think it looks good, and other times when I feel frustrated with it.

Does your house look like these photos?

Neither does mine.

But I'd like it to -

I kind of feel like I'm a little tiny bit part way to it looking good and just doesn't quite measure up.

I walked around the house today with my camera and tried to just look through the lens objectively - like if you were taking photos of your house to submit to a magazine how would it really look?

The results were not good. I didn't even take any of the photos because it was kind of disheartening.

But I think it's a good idea. It really helps you to see things more objectively, more like someone who's never been to your house before probably sees it.

So that's my plan - try to approximate something more like the rooms I love in these magazines and less like what I've currently got going on. I think more than anything it's a lack of structure and organization within my rooms. So my goal for the next 7 days is to take one room at a time, photograph it objectively and then try to fix the problems. I'll try to upload the photos here and see if I can make some progress...anybody want to join in the fun? Come on Shannon...aren't you at least game?

Sunday, August 03, 2008

As I near my "Break"

Soon I get to go on nearly a month long break on the diet. It will be nice to go back on in September and see the loss speed up again for a while (It has a tendency to slow down over time as I near the end of four months on the diet)

Thanks for all the support from every friend who has said nice things, done nice things, encouraged me on this diet and eaten at whatever restaurant I suggested (I've been a bit of a control freak on this diet in that way I suppose making everyone cater to my whim).

Thanks also to Kirk for being really great about everything.

The other day we were getting ready to go somewhere and he was very complimentary and nice about the loss and he said one of the nicest things he ever could have said - he told me he knew I wanted to lose more and that he was supportive of whatever I wanted to do - but that he wanted me to know that I looked great and he didn't care if I lost another pound because I already looked really good.

I am not a thin girl yet. In fact, many people would look at me and say "she could stand to lose a few pounds". But it's so nice to be married to guy who loves me no matter what. And maybe that's been part of what has made this easier for me. So thanks.

If you want to hear me rambling on about the food and the diet, etc. you can always check the food blog HERE - but this is just to say Thanks to everyone for helping me get to this point.

I appreciate it!


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