Monday, March 19, 2012

Excellent movies that should be watched at the next possible opportunity.

So fact, it has been a while. I don't really have a good excuse for that, maybe just that the 'dedicated' part has not quite hit me yet.
Anyway, it is spring break this week. At least for me. Or rather, half-break. I have a somewhat unique school situation. I'm home-schooled but I also usually take at least one class at the community college per semester and I also attend an early morning scripture study class. Both of which are on completely different schedules. So while this week provides me with a temporary respite from my college class, I still have to wake before the sun and attend scripture study. And in about a month or so it will be spring break for my scripture study class but I will still be attending my college class. Kind of an inconvenient set up, but it hasn't killed me yet and I guess this way I get two breaks, right?

But back to what this is really about. In the last month or two I have seen some absolutely fabulous movies.

1. Courageous - The people who make these movies are seriously awesome. I've seen and loved some of the others they've done (i.e. Facing the Giants, and Fireproof) however, I think I enjoyed this one almost more. It was so great. One of those feel-good movies that isn't too cheesy. As this one is about police officers it's a little more intense (it is rated PG-13) so it may be a little much for smaller children, but still very family friendly. It's all about the impact a good father (and the lack thereof) can have on his children, and encourages all fathers to make the decision to be a good one and always be there for their wives and children. A must-see in my opinion.

2. Sense & Sensibility - I so love the BBC. And Jane Austen. And together? Perfection. Probably a good five years ago, at least, I saw another version of S&S that really was quite awful, and it quite lacked Jane Austen's magic. Since then I have not endeavored to read the book or watch any other version of it. All I could see were the similarities to Pride & Prejudice and bad fake-crying. Needless to say I was turned off. It really made me kind of sad because up until that point everything Jane Austen that I had encountered (which I must admit was very limited) was lovely and enchanting, and this just wasn't. But then, I came across this version. Ohhhh...'tis so very beautiful! I ought to warn you that in the first minute or two of the movie there is a somewhat disturbing scene which I would recommend skipping through or editing out or whatever you prefer. The rest of the movie is so worth it. Almost all of the Dashwoods are quite endearing in their own little quirkiness. I positively loved Margaret, could relate to Marianne, could see my older sister (and myself) in Elinor, and their mother was so very charming. And dear Mr. Weasley is in it! Or rather whoever plays him. And everything turns out SO beautifully in the end!

3. North & South - Again, BBC! However, this one is not Jane Austen as you probably know (although it's just as fabulous, or close anyway). It's actually based off of a novel by Elizabeth Gaskell which I am dying to get my hands on now. This mini-series has thoroughly and completely captured my heart. My mother and I started watching it last week and by the end of episode two I was hooked. The main characters are similar to Elizabeth and Darcy from P&P but not so much as to make you feel like you're watching the same movie under a different title (or at least I don't think so). I felt that the ending left a little to be desired, but I loved it just the same. And the really great news: this is not Gaskell's only novel. She wrote five others (at least one of which has been made into a mini-series as well) along with an assortment of short stories and novellas. You can thank me later! ;)

4. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close -
I don't think I can possibly describe this movie in words. It was beyond amazing. Emotionally taxing, but so wonderful. The characters are delightfully quirky, the story is intriguing, and the acting is phenomenal. Of course with Sandra Bullock and Tom Hanks you couldn't really expect less, could you? It made me feel and think about so many different things. It's not the type of movie you watch a million times but I am so glad to have to seen it. By the way, this one is also based on a book which I have not yet read but am also looking forward to.

5. Gnomeo & Juliet -
If after all of the dramatic, serious stuff on here you are looking for something a little lighter, this one is amusing. With Emily Blunt (The Young Victoria) and James McAvoy (Chronicles of Narnia) how can you go wrong?

Also, today I finished reading a book written by a friend of mine called Only the Stars Know. It's paranormal romance-ish which should interest you if you're a Twilight fan, but should not turn you off if you're not. You should check it/her out if you get the chance because they're awesome!

Thanks for reading, and have a remarkable week everyone!