Sunday, December 23, 2012

Sunday Salon: Other Movies Watched This Year

Batman Begins and Dark Knight. I was hesitant to give Batman a try, at first, but I am so glad I did! Even though it isn't a genre I typically seek out, it surprised me with its depth. Both films were intense and compelling. I thought both were well done--good storytelling, good dialogue, good acting, etc. I didn't realize how much stayed with me until I began reading Paul Asay's God On the Streets of Gotham which quotes quite a bit from Nolan's films. The scenes have depth and there is always something to think about or consider. The films feel thoughtful and rich. I haven't watched the third film yet; I hope to do so soon! These are films that I'd like to watch again.

Men in Black 3. I have always enjoyed the Men in Black films. So I knew this was one I'd want to watch. I was surprised by how much I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED it. For the first time in this series, there is something more to the story. Something substantive and rich in meaning and significance. On the surface, it is about men in black trying to save the world, once again. But. That's not the whole story. And this was the first time I felt there was sincerity and authenticity to the characters, the scenes, the story. Plus, it has TIME TRAVEL. The movie begins with a prisoner escaping from prison. Boris wants revenge on the agent who sent him to prison--the agent that caused him to lose an arm. He wants to go back in time and kill Agent K...and that is when J begins craving chocolate milk. I won't talk about what happens or even attempt to discuss what it all means. But. This film is one I LOVED. A film I've seen twice now. (I'm tempted to watch it again but I'm trying to fit some Christmas movies in before Christmas.)

Pittsburgh. Now this is a film (mockumentary/documentary) starring Jeff Goldblum. I would never have picked it up if there hadn't been a Music Man connection. In this "film" Jeff Goldblum is preparing to star in the role of Harold Hill in a local production of The Music Man in Pittsburgh. There are plenty of scenes showing rehearsals and giving a behind-the-scenes look at the show. In this case, the director trying to transform Jeff Goldblum into a somewhat believable Harold Hill. It was interesting to see him singing the songs I know so well--76 Trombones, Ya Got Trouble, etc. But there are more stories to follow in the film. Stories that didn't exactly interest me as much. I am glad I watched it even though I'd probably not watch it again.

White Christmas is one of my favorite Christmas movies. I don't LOVE it as I do Holiday Inn. But I enjoy it. There are some really enjoyable scenes in White Christmas. The musical number "Sisters," the song-and-dance number "The Best Things Happen While You're Dancing," the train scenes, and, of course, the opening and closing scenes with the focus on the song White Christmas. The ending IS magical.

Muppet Christmas Carol. This is one of my FAVORITE Christmas films. It's so quotable too! I just love this adaptation of Charles Dicken's The Christmas Carol. I love that it's a musical. The music is just perfect. It is ESSENTIAL to view it with "When Love Is Gone" however even if that means watching it in full screen instead of widescreen. According to Amazon (and wikipedia) the song is NOT included in the newest Blu-Ray and DVD releases.

© 2012 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews


Levi 9:26 PM  

Of all the Christopher Nolan Batman films, Batman Begins was my favorite. I thought that The Dark Knight was the best, but I'll always have a soft spot in my heart for BB. The Dark Knight Rises, however... I have issues with it, to say the least, issues which I detailed in the review of the Dark Knight Saga on my own blog, The Life and Times of Levi Sweeney. A good series of films, but not my most favorite depiction of Batman.

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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

You should know several things before you contact me:

1) I do not guarantee a review of your book. I am just agreeing to consider it for review.
2) I give all books at least fifty pages.
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4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
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