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Posts tagged ‘films’

Year of Revisiting #12 – Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

“Next time there’s a ball, pluck up the courage and ask me before somebody else does, and not as a last resort!”

After reading Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, I wanted to revisit Goblet of Fire, the events of which figure prominently in Cursed Child.  The wrapping was still on the DVD so I had probably not seen it since the theater showing over 10 years ago.

Goblet starts at the Quidditch World Cup, which I suppose is the magical version of the soccer World Cup, which I never much cared about but reminded me a little of the Olympics, which were currently happening but which I wasn’t really watching either.   Read more

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Year of Revisiting #10 – Obvious Child

“Did you just warm this butter up for me?”

“That’s just what you do.”

 
After a break of not watching much of anything, I queued up Obvious Child the other night. I hadn’t seen it since the theater showing two years ago, when a friend and I went on a Wednesday, I think. (Going to the movies on a school night makes me feel transgressive and cool.) I remember her knitting throughout, which was pretty impressive considering the darkness, and the two of us laughing at the jokes, often ribald and crude. Read more

Year of Revisiting #9 – The Ghost and Mrs. Muir

“You can be much more alone with other people than you are by yourself. Even if it’s people you love.”

It had been years since I had seen The Ghost and Mrs. Muir, though as a love story and a ghost story it had stood out in my memory among the many movies I watched as a child.

Rex Harrison plays Daniel, a deceased sailor, who haunts Gene Tierney’s widow Lucy Muir when she moves into his home. What surprised me most about the movie, after maybe two decades since my last viewing, was not Daniel, whose blatant sexism I tried not to judge too harshly by today’s standards, but Lucy, who is a spinster in the most modern, positive sense. After her husband dies, she breaks free of her overbearing in-laws to live with her daughter in a haunted cottage by the water. “I never had a life of my own,” she says early on and throughout the film makes similar statements. When I was young, the chaste love story was the draw and I doubt Lucy’s independence and satisfyingly solitary life even registered. As an adult, I see the movie as a story about a woman making a life on her own. Read more

Year of Revisiting #8 – Take Care

“When someone asks me to do them a favor, it feels like they’re literally sucking the air out of my lungs.  Like they’re trying to steal my life.”

Though I only saw Take Care for the first time in the last couple of years, this second chance love story has become one of my favorites.  While the premise might be a bit unusual—Frannie (Leslie Bibb), who gets hit by a car, guilts her ex-boyfriend Devon (Thomas Sadoski) into taking care of her during her recovery—everything else about the characters and their relationships and motivations is pretty believable.

Frannie’s recovery brings me back to the time when I broke my foot and was immobile, miserable, and dependent.  Worried about gaining weight while being laid up for weeks, I ate mostly diet shakes.  “I’m not going to eat for the next three months.  I don’t want to get fat,” Frannie says, and for days just eats fruit—until Devon points out how crazy this is and makes her a proper meal. Read more

Year of Revisiting #7 – Wuthering Heights

“You said I killed you–haunt me, then! The murdered do haunt their murderers, I believe.  I know that ghosts have wandered on earth. Be with me always–take any form–drive me mad!”

Wuthering Heights has long been a favorite because it’s a ghost story and a love story and also a little edgy.  Heathcliff, particularly as an adult, is truly violent and despicable and also a bit bizarre.   He digs up Catherine’s grave to be near her.  He wants to be haunted by her.  He’s tortured and broken lover numero uno.

But what I really love about the story–the romance that is the most engaging–is not the Heathcliff/Catherine affair but the Hareton/Cathy one, which is always overshadowed by the craziness of the elders.  The younger set is delightfully charming and sweet, and I would gladly read an entire novel about Cathy teaching the brutish Hareton to read by bestowing kisses as rewards.

In conjunction with my re-reading, via the audio book wonderfully acted by Janet McTeer and David Timson, I wanted to rewatch the two movies I recalled enjoying, but one (with Ralph Fiennes) I couldn’t find streaming.  So I settled on the 2011 version, which I’d never seen before, with James Howson and Kaya Scodelario, whose tagline apparently is “Love is a Force of Nature.”  Boy, is it.  This Amazon review says it all:

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