As part of my attempt to live a more balanced life in 2013, I have given myself the assignment to watch 2 movies and to read 2 books each month. Here is my May report.
Small, Beautifully Moving Parts – Clever + truthful. A pregnant, techie-oriented woman, who lives in NYC, goes to LA so that her sister may give her a proper baby shower. Once on the west coast, the mother-to-be decides to visit her divorced parents. Her father’s reaction to seeing her is delight, but her off-the-grid mother’s reaction is alternately hilarious or sad. Recommended if you like honest characters + quiet triumphs.
Jesus Henry Christ – Tedious + confused. I wanted to like this movie produced by Julia Roberts, but I didn’t. The premise is that a brilliant 10-year-old boy, whose mother had in vitro fertilization, decides to find out who his biological father really is– and he does. But the plot dragged on and the characters were of the over-the-top-but-supposed-to-be-endearing variety so that nothing in the story seemed interesting or plausible or worth caring about. Not recommended.
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks – Extraordinary + compelling. Rebecca Skloot tells the true story of how one woman’s cells, taken from her without her permission, came to be first “immortal” human cells grown in a medical lab at Johns Hopkins University. Plus, Skloot tells the story of Henrietta’s life, her children’s lives and all the subsequent injustices done to all of them. Recommended if you like medical history + family stories that span generations.
Too Much Happiness – Well-written, but forgettable. I know that Alice Munro is a writer with an enthusiastic following so I decided to read one of her books. This book of 10 short stories was, perhaps, not her best effort– or maybe I don’t get her. I found the stories to be depressing &/or mundane; so much so that even her smooth writing couldn’t overcome it. Recommended if you like glimpses into the darker side of human nature + need something to read that’s easy to put down and pick up as need be.
1 Complete Blank
In this spot I like to share something clever or funny that I saw/read/heard during the month, but I’m coming up with a blank here. Oh well, whatever. If anyone has something inspiring or cheerful that could be in this spot, just let me know & in it goes. If not, I suggest that we all be like Quakers at a Sunday meeting and sit here silently reflecting upon the Divine. The choice is yours, gentle readers.
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[As promised above, I’ve added your ideas to inspire or cheer thus filling in my Complete Blank.]
1) From Polly at caughtwriting, an Emily Dickinson quote:
“Forever– is composed of nows.”
2) From Zazzy at zazamataz.com, an e.e. cummings quote:
“The most wasted of all days is one without laughter.”
3) From Phil at Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge, a Judy Garland rendition of a popular song:
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