Monday, February 26, 2018

Winston Churchill Quotes

Monday: Dialogue, Lines, or Quotes

I collect quotes and have many attributed to Winston Churchill, so I was thrilled when ClearPlay asked me to review Darkest Hour (2017). (Click here for the review.)

Here are some of my favorite Churchill-isms:
  • Never hold discussions with the monkey when the organ grinder is in the room.
  • Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm.
  • Success is not final, failure is not fatal, it is the courage to continue that counts.
  • If you're going through hell, keep going.
  • You have enemies? Good. It means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life.
  • When the eagles are silent, the parrots begin to jabber.
  • Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak, it's also what it takes to sit down and listen.
  • Continuous effort -- not strength or intelligence -- is the key to unlocking our potential.

(For a full list of links to my ClearPlay reviews, click on the tab above or click here.)

Monday, February 19, 2018

We can change how we see.

Monday: Dialogue, Lines, or Quotes

I am a fan of the book and the movie Wonder (2017). I read the book last November (even purchased a copy), watched the movie in December, and highlighted it in a blog post here. So when ClearPlay recently asked if I would be interested in writing a review for Wonder, I excitedly responded Yes!

Reflecting on the movie again, I want to share a profound line of dialogue from the school principal (Mandy Patinkin).
Auggie can't change how he looks. Maybe we should change how we see.
So true, Mr. Tushman, so true!

I also loved what Mr. Tushman said during his "middle-school address" (found in the book, not the movie):
If every single person in this room made it a rule that wherever you are, whenever you can, you will try to act a little kinder than is necessary--the world really would be a better place. And if you do this, if you act just a little kinder than is necessary, someone else, somewhere, someday, may recognize in you, in every single one of you, the face of God.
Change how I see, and act a little kinder than is necessary. I can do that.

(Click here for my review of the film.)

(For a full list of my ClearPlay reviews, click on the tab above or click here.)

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Take 36: The King of Masks

Tuesday: My "take" on a film.

With a couple hours free to watch whatever I wanted, I pulled out Leonard Maltin's 151 Best Movies You've Never Seen. My goal was to find a film listed in the book that would be available to me right then and there. I didn't want to go to the library or Redbox, I wanted something at my fingertips (read: still in pajamas and too lazy to get dressed).

A film from China, The King of Masks, sounded interesting and it was streaming on Amazon so it won. And, oh my goodness, I am glad. What a heartwarming, heart-tugging, film!

Set in the 1930s, Bianlian Wang (Xu Zhu) is a gifted street performer and master of "face changing" -- rapidly changing masks like magic. It's a dying art and Wang is no spring chicken. He wants to pass on the secret technique, but according to cultural tradition it must be passed on to a male heir.

Since he has no living son, Master Wang purchases a boy from the black market in hopes of training him. The youngster calls him "Grandpa" and he affectionately nicknames the child, "Doggie." The story pulls us through surprise, disappointment, hardship, sacrifice and love.

The child actor (Renying Zhou) gave such a captivating performance I found myself mesmerized and emotionally drawn into their lives. I unashamedly bawled as I watched the movie alone, and wept while watching it again later with my husband. (I will neither confirm nor deny that he, too, cried.)

Leonard Matlin wrote,
"When you can send an e-mail to someone halfway around the globe and receive an instantaneous reply, it's clear that we all live in a global village. Yet I don't think any medium is more powerful than film in fostering our understanding of different cultures and creating empathy for people we might never meet."
I agree. Rich in visuals and culture, this film continues to run through my mind, and sticks with me in a good way.

Notes on content:
  • The English subtitles (for the version I saw) included one f-word. That's a shame since the original Chinese word probably had a different meaning.
  • No sexual content, but there is partial nudity when a little girl squats to urinate (a side-shot of her bare thigh), and a small boy's genitalia is shown in a side view as he urinates.
  • No violence seen, but is implied. (A man gets beaten, but not on-screen.)