Thursday, July 18, 2019

Jane Austen Binging

Public Domain Image: Jane Austen
I've been binging on movies based on Jane Austen novels. It started with watching the six hour BBC mini-series of Pride and Prejudice (1995) with Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy, which then made me want to watch the two hour version (2005) with Keira Knightley playing the part of Elizabeth Bennet.

Since I was on a roll, I moved on to Sense and Sensibility (1995) starring Emma Thompson, Kate Winslet, Hugh Grant, and Alan Rickman, then watched the 2008 mini-series for comparison. Both are good, but I prefer the version with Emma Thompson.

With that name in mind, I went to Emma (1996) starring Gwyneth Paltrow in the lead role, followed by the 4-hour TV mini-series (Emma 2009).

But the binge didn't end there. I also watched Mansfield Park (1999) with Jonny Lee Miller as the best friend-turned-love interest, Edmund Bertram. (I watch the Elementary series with Johnny Lee portraying Sherlock Holmes, so it was fun to see him in such a different role!)

Does my husband mind all these supposed chick flicks? Not at all. In fact, a couple weeks ago when asked what movie he wanted to watch, he selected The Jane Austen Book Club (2007) and felt proud that he knew most of the stories they discussed... except for Northanger Abbey. I was unfamiliar with that one, too, at the time.

So, I downloaded a free app called "Serial Reader" that provides just a small portion of a classic book each day at a specified time, and I selected (you guessed it) Northanger Abbey. [This is a great way to read classic literature because it only takes about 10-15 minutes to read the day's portion, making it a bit easier to concentrate on and digest.] I'm approximately 81% through this one.

Then I stumbled across an interesting book: The Jane Austen Diet: Austen's Secrets to Food, Health, and Incandescent Happiness by Jane Austen, Bryan Kozlowski (Contributor). The Jane Austen Diet? I had to see what it was all about, and it turned out to be full of delightful nuggets. Who knew Jane Austen was a health guru! One thing for certain... she wouldn't advocate binging, so it's doubtful she would be flattered by our excessive viewing/reading of all things Jane.


In the meantime, I discovered our local library has the DVD of Northanger Abbey... two versions, actually. I didn't even know it was made into a film, let alone more than one! Guess what we'll be watching after I finish the novel!

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Take 40: The Music of Silence

Tuesday: My "take" on a film.

The Music of Silence (2017)

The Unforgettable True Story of Andrea Bocelli

I first became aware of Bocelli when he sang "Because We Believe" during the closing ceremony of the 2006 Winter Olympics held in Torino, Italy. I had recorded the program on VHS and watched that segment numerous times, his magnificent tenor voice touching my soul.

Since then, I've purchased many of his songs. They lift my spirit, soothe anxiety, inspire.

So imagine my delight to watch a film about his life... his journey with blindness, his struggles and triumphs, his family's love, support, and encouragement. And I learned how the title reflects his approach to singing, as he is taught...

Maestro (Antonio Banderas)
Silence is the most important and
the most difficult discipline.

With that, I will stop talking about the film and let you go watch it.

Movieclips Indie Trailer: The Music of Silence

Notes on Content:
  • No violence
  • A scene with implied sex, but nothing shown. No nudity.
  • No language issues (or it was so mild, I didn't notice).

Monday, June 10, 2019

Attitude makes a difference.

Monday: Dialogue, Lines, or Quotes

I posted a review of Walk. Ride. Rodeo. (2019) last week, and I continue to reflect on these wise words of dialogue.

Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference. I realize maybe I won't have control over every situation in my life. Maybe I don't get to make every decision. But when I wake up in the morning, I get to decide my attitude. Today is our day. And if that's the only decision I get to make that day... I better make it a good one.

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Take 39: Walk. Ride. Rodeo.

Tuesday: My "take" on a film.

Two feet moved her body, but four feet moved her soul.

Amberley (Spencer Locke) feels most alive on a horse, and loves rodeo competition. She tells a friend...

Rodeo isn't something I do,
it's, really, it's who I am.

She dreams of competing at the National Finals Rodeo and it seems likely she will reach that goal, but with the flip of an F-150, she finds herself severely injured. Will she ever ride again?

Based on the true story of champion barrel racer Amberley Snyder, this movie inspires and uplifts. I love stories about people who strive to grow from adversity, determined to reach their dreams despite obstacles. Often they need to re-evaluate goals, and require an attitude adjustment.

At a particularly low point, Amberley's mother (portrayed by Missi Pyle) admonishes her...

Don't you give up! This chair will either be
your wings or it will be your anchor. You decide.

Walk. Ride. Rodeo. is quality film, available on Netflix. If you appreciate triumphant true stories, saddle up for this one.

Netflix Official Trailer: Walk. Ride. Rodeo.

Notes on content:
  • Rated PG, family friendly.
  • No sex, and no full nudity (two scenes contain a shirtless male).
  • Infrequent mild language.
  • Violent scene of the accident, and bloody wounds shown.