Monday, December 29, 2008

The Dark Knight








This is definitely a movie to see on the big screen. I will admit I have enjoyed all the Batman movies – even with Val Kilmer and the batsuit with nipples. Before the Nolan involvement my favorite was the original one with Michael Keaton, but I will say Batman Begins is now and still my favorite. I will put The Dark Knight in between Batman Begins and Batman.

Batman is my favorite superhero because he is an ordinary man without superpowers. While he is a vigilante he tries to do the right thing.

People are saying that Heath Ledger should receive an Oscar for his performance. I thought he did an excellent job as the Joker. He made the character his own which can be difficult when you think about Jack Nicholson’s performance. However, movies of this type are rarely nominated. I would hate for him to be nominated because of his unfortunate death.

I was a bit disappointed they didn’t do more with Harvey Dent as Two-Face. But then even before they had Two-Face with the Riddler. I did like they way the ideals one holds can be thrown away under tragic circumstances.

I also wish that Maggie Gyllenhaal was the first Rachel Dawes or had brought back Katie Holmes. Out of the two Maggie was more believable, but Rachel was not a main character either.

The Dark Knight is a great edition to the Batman franchise and I hope that Christopher and Jonathan Nolan stay with it. They returned Batman from a cartoon to an action hero.

Nights in Rodanthe



This movie is based on the book by Nicholas Sparks. It is an enjoyable movie to watch, but my biggest criticism about it would be how could one weekend “save your life?” I would label myself to be the walking oxymoron of the cynical hopeless romantic. Yes, I believe “the one” exists and I even believe in the overused term of “soul mate.” I happen to believe mine is a very late bloomer or is no longer alive.

The scenery is absolutely beautiful. I would love to stay in that beach house and walk along that beach. I would also love to find a community that has those clam bakes. This is the perfect setting in my mind.

I do believe that people come into our lives for a reason. That reason may not last as long as we would like it to, but we learn something or appreciate something because of that person. In this movie you see how their lives had changed because of their meeting, and even falling in love.

I cannot find the quote from it, but in the end she tells her daughter not to settle on love. The person that you love should not make you someone that you are not and not less than what you are.

This is not a movie I will buy, but it was
a nice one to watch.

Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons



I read this book for a book club I have joined. Not to insult my book club, but I wish mine was more like this one. They were friends that helped each other out. The one I am in is almost too large and we’re not really comfortable in expressing strong opinions.

It starts out in the 1960s and goes into the 1990s. There is Slip – the activist, Audrey – the curvy sexpot, Faith – the liar of her past, Kari – the widow, and Merit – the survivor of domestic abuse. While more books were read each chapter is about the person that chose a particular book – some books were discussed more than others. However, you could see these women being neighbors and even friends.

I found this book to be very hard to put down and I really enjoyed the characters and how they grew in their 30 years together as a book club. We also got to see how their children grew and became the people they are because of their mothers. I wrote down the books they had mentioned in the book to read, and I had already read some of them. I would also like to read more books by Lorna Landvik.

Lilibet


I really enjoyed this book on Queen Elizabeth II. Most biographies will make you really like a person or not like them. I walked away feeling pretty much the same about her. She is very much a traditionalist and trying to rule as her father would have, and often times this would cause her to make a decision without making a decision. One would be on not forcing Winston Churchill to resign due to health reasons, and the other involved her sister wanting to marry a divorced man. Other times is showed she has a lot of bravery – especially trying to stop a run away carriage and an assassination attempt.

Diana is often referred to as the People’s Princess, and from reading this book, before she was Queen, Elizabeth, was the People’s Princess. I think the two might not have liked each other very much because there were many similarities. However, the main reason Lilibet did not open her heart to Diana is because of her actions before she married Charles. Both were age 19 when they married. Lilibet was crazy about Phillip and this (her) love is what has kept them married for so many years, and she never saw that with Diana.

This book also makes one think of alternate history. What if during World War II had Hitler succeeded in invading Great Britain, and reestablished King Edward XII (a Nazi sympathizer) to the thrown.

From reading this book I have a much better understanding about Queen Elizabeth II and the British monarchy.

No Greater Love



Every now and then I’ve got to have a mindless read and Danielle Steele fits the bill. I had friends in high school that would only read her books. There are a few I really like and I could put No Greater Love in that category. Edwina is 20 years old and on the return portion of her engagement trip on the Titanic her parents and fiancée are unable to leave the ship. She is left to raise her siblings on her own. Mourning her fiancée she will not consider marriage to anyone until the children are grown. Phillip leaves to attend Harvard, but drops out to fit in World War I or the Great War. George is the next to go to Harvard, but leaves to go to Hollywood and make movies. George becomes a success and his younger sister Alexis dreams of becoming an actress. Not only are George and Alexis’ futures held in Hollywood, but Edwina’s also ends up there.

While most Danielle Steele novels have similar plots this was a fun but sad read. She stayed true with the character and there was no dramatic jump which left me thinking where did this come from?

My favorite Danielle Steele books are: Wings, Jewels, and Mixed Blessings. I can now add No Greater Love to that list.