The Fast and the Furiously in Love

December 17, 2014 at 7:32 pm (In So Many Words) (, , , , , , , , , , , , )

It may sound ridiculous, but one of my favorite love stories of film is in The Fast and the Furious franchise.  And it’s not pretty boy Paul Walker’s character Brian O’Connor and his little family-style romance with Mia.  They actually annoy me a little.  It’s Dom and Letty (Vin Diesel and Michelle Rodriguez) that make me swoon.

dom & letty“I know everything about you,” Dom says, leaning into Letty as she’s backed up to the side of her car.

And that’s the hottest thing, isn’t it? Being known and still being loved so completely.

Want a panty dropper, date scene at the movies?  Leap out of a speeding car on a bridge into the abyss of open air to catch your love as she hurdles to her death – not knowing that either of you will be saved – just knowing you have to catch her.  Oh yeah, and she doesn’t remember you, and she shot you in the shoulder earlier, but… you know her, and you love her, and you have a history…

Screw flowers and diamonds, Dom has grand romantic gestures on lock down.

Noooo, I’m not an adrenaline junkie.  Not. At. All.

“How did you know that there would be a car there to break our fall?”

“I didn’t.  Some things you just have to take on faith.”

Maybe  that’s my problem.  I swoon over movies like Fast 6. Literally, I swoon.  Cars, racing, fight sequences, love that survives gun shot wounds and absences.  Sheer will power and stubbornness.  This is what romances me.  These are the things that speak to my heart.

gisele and hanAnd yes, I’d let go and fall to my death just to take a shot at the douche bag trying to sneak up on my lover. And for that, I find Han and Gisele utterly romantic as well.  What can I say? I’m a sucker.

Other favorites in movie history:

UP: The old man and Ellie. The first 15 minutes of that movie make me bawl like a baby. I love it. I’m living it. A romance born of childhood dreams and companionship.

Persuasion: Based on Jane Austen’s book. Another story of will power and waiting. Add to that Emma and you have the friendship and affection I sought out when I started dating my husband.

tonight you're mineTonight You’re Mine: This is probably one of the rare love stories I am into where the characters have not known each other half their lives. It’s epically reminiscent of my college years, minus being handcuffed to a super star, mind you. But the movie feels as much like home as 1327 does when I see it on screen.

I’m not a speed demon criminal by a long shot, but Dom and I have very similar values. The ultimate romance is always one with your best friend and playmate. Just like Dom and Letty, who met at 15. Things like Titanic – that whole whirlwind of meeting that day and then feigning passionate love forever – never quite do it for it. It rings false every time. I remember seeing Titanic for the first time in the theatres and thinking, “She went on and had babies with someone else, why is she pretending he was the love of her life? He’s just someone she screwed on a boat. What a slut.”

Tonight You’re Mine is the only whirlwind I can get behind… mostly because it was very Pride & Prejudice in nature, there was bickering before companionship, there was an established bond before love.  That and there’s the mad rush of music.

My husband thinks I’m a little ridiculous.  But if I had amnesia, I’d want there to be someone to fight for me.  Someone to tell me where my scars came from.  Someone to let me know it’s ok to be me, and that the me I was before was someone worth loving.  And if there’s fast cars, a nostalgic house, stubborn wills, and music… all the better.

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Life of Pi

May 22, 2014 at 3:06 am (Reviews) (, , , , , )

life of pi movieIt seems I’ve been playing movie catch up this week.  Of course, I naturally lean toward choosing movies that have a literary base, which allows me to write book to movie reviews.

life-of-pi-book-coverI read Life of Pi a few years ago.  Possibly a few more than a few years ago, as I can’t remember the actual year and I know it was long before I was anywhere close to being a parent and I currently have a three year old.

I initially picked it up because I was working at a bookstore in the fiction/ literature section which included dealing with all the school reading list titles we were aware of.  Yann Martel had managed to make it to a high school English class’s required curriculum and that sparked my interest.  Someone somewhere thought you shouldn’t leave high school without reading this book and those same people were the ones that introduced me to John Steinbeck and George Orwell.

I read it quickly.  It’s a breezy read, full of riveting emotional adventure on a life raft in the open water.  I remember thinking, ‘Now this is what a book about someone stuck on a boat should be,’ after all, I was never a fan of Old Man and the Sea, despite feeling like I should.

I also remember hearing about it being made into a movie and thinking, ‘This could be really beautiful or they could really screw it up.’

Finally, I was able to discover the answer to my speculations.

It was so beautiful.

Life-of-Pi-edible-islandIt was extraordinary.

It was exactly what I imagined.

I haven’t experienced a movie so true to my experience of the book since Ian McEwan’s Atonement was tackled by Joe Wright.

Ang Lee nailed it.


life of pi whale

Which of course is apparent by the fact that at the 85th Academy Awards it won four awards, after being nominated for eleven.  I have a tendency to be a teensy oblivious to things like the Academy Awards, whether I watch them or not.  Two years later, I’m cheering for the wins.

Well done.  Well done.


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Where Curiosity Comes to Stay

April 18, 2013 at 7:18 am (Events, The Whim) (, , , , , , , , )

One of my favorite shops put out a short film.  The shop is called Good Books in the Woods, I credit them for inspiration in the bio on the back of my first novella which will be coming out soon.  Recently, I planned to write a When We’re Not Reading segment on the release party for the film as well as on Journaling Night for HPB Humble.  The post never occurred as I had so much fun at both events, I forgot to take pictures.

Luckily, I don’t have to spend too much time what an incredible evening it was… coffee, wine, cookies, fruit trays, book browsing, film viewing… all in the cozy living room of Good Books in the Woods, because the film is available for you to see too.


Click the movie poster to view the You Tube video.

I hope you enjoy it!

As for Journaling… the second Thursday of every month at 7:00 pm, I sit myself at the table in the Metaphysics and Health section at Half Price Books Humble with journals, pens, prisma pencils, clip art, and a whole lot of creative energy.  Inevitably, one or two customers always join me.  It’s really relaxing and offers a chance to really kick all your cares from the day out of your mind.

Needless to say, despite the fact that the segments are called When We’re Not Reading, there’s generally a bookish theme to every aspect of our lives.

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A Tidbit from Miss Golightly

January 19, 2013 at 7:04 am (Guest Blogger) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

My boys 🙂 They’re so beautiful. (Top left is Henry Higgins, top right is Colonel Brandon, and bottom two pics are of Gil Pender.)


Follow Miss Golightly on Twitter @missjgolightly.

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Young Adult

January 10, 2013 at 10:06 am (Reviews) (, , , , , , , , , )



I have an illness.  I see an indie film and no matter how awful it looks, I feel the urge to give it a shot.  It’s an indie film, which to me means it’s an underdog, and who knows, what if it’s a hidden gem of awesomeness?

Take that and a love for authors, books, stories about authors of books, and Charlize Theron in all her hotness – how could I pass up Young Adult on Netflix?  I just couldn’t.

youngadultposterOh dear God, give me that hour and thirty-three minutes of my life back.

That’s not fair, the movie is good for what it is.  It is well done.  It has a bit of wit to it.  The director of photography did this brilliant thing with a cassette tape and player and the beginning that I totally loved.

But I really don’t think it is possible for a character to stress me out anymore than Mavis Gary just managed.  I mean seriously, what was wrong with that crazy lady?! Everything! That’s what!

She is an alcoholic who drinks way too much diet coke first thing in the morning – out of the bottle.  She is chronically unsatisfied, sleeps around, divorced, 37, at the tale end of writing glory (she was a ghost writer of a young adult series that is a few years past its prime selling years), and oh yeah the most important part: she’s chasing down her married ex-boyfriend who just had a baby with his wife.  It’s a pretty ballsy role for Theron, and she pulls it off brilliantly; I just want to strangle the whole demented story, if strangling a story could ever be possible.

Patton-Oswalt-young-adultThe best part, the part that does make the movie worth a damn, is Patton Oswalt.  I sort of love him.  A lot.  He is an awesome supporting actor that shows up in everything, but I know him best as Joel Mynor in Joss Whedon’s Dollhouse.  He is Mavis’ voice of reason in this little fiasco of a man hunt/coming of age story.  Can you call it a coming of age story if the protagonist is 37? I think not, but I promise you, it fits.  And in the end when the Patton Oswalt’s on-screen sister asks to go back to the Mini-Apple with Mavis, I desperately wanted her to say ‘Can’t I’m taking your super awesome brother.’  Of course, that didn’t happen because despite the Esmeralda/Quasimodo dynamic, Young Adult’s own Quasimodo character was way to good for the likes of the star beauty.

Oh dear God give me that hour and thirty three minutes of my life back – except don’t.  Even though it was kind of painful to watch, it resonates a bit.  Check it out.  Let me know what you make of it.

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Book to Film Fail

May 5, 2012 at 11:44 pm (Reviews) (, , , , , )

Remember my Water for Elephants review? I loved the book.  It was wonderful.  Read it in one day, and thought it was lovely.  It was lovely in a raw and gritty circus animal way.  At the end of my review I let you all know that I hadn’t seen the movie, but I’d let you know what I thought of it when I did.  Well, now I’ve seen it and I’m royally disappointed.

It’s too clean.

The set looks clean, the characters are too clean.  The magic of the gritty circus look is absolutely missing.  I love Reese Witherspoon to death, but she was utterly wrong for the role of Marlena.  Her acting is always impeccably perfect, but to no fault of her own she’s too blonde, too beautiful, and too old for the role.  Vampire Boy/ Cedric Diggory/ Robert whats-his-face is entirely the wrong look as well.  He should be a red head, couldn’t they have dyed his hair? Even the midget is too pretty of a midget.  And the character that gets the Jakes should have looked a little more like Dopey from the 7 Dwarfs… no one looks their part.  The train is too clean, the tents are too clean.  Where are the dust bowls? Where’s the Depression?

In addition to all this clean-ness, the cinematography is too crisp.  But not in a new movie way, its crisp like I’m watching an afternoon soap opera, or someone’s home movie.  Everything is so bright, in the book I imagined the circus being a small series of twinkles in a long road of darkness.

The structure and mood of the movie is nothing of that of the book.  If you’ve read the book, you remember the opening? The scene that sets up the premise for all that is to come – the scene that makes you want to read the rest of the book in the first place?  That scene is completely omitted from the opening of the film.  What’s so depressing about that is that they filmed it! You see it at the end! Why didn’t they edit it so that it matched the genius of the bookend style that Sara Gruen so brilliantly wrote?

As the last scene closes, my best friend, who waited to watch the movie with me because we both loved the book so much says, “That was lame.”

The movie had no umph.

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Not So Legendary

January 18, 2011 at 8:23 pm (Reviews) (, , , , , , , , , )

A Review of Legends of the Fall, a novella by Jim Harrison

I only read The Legends of the Fall novella of this book, not the other short stories and novellas.  That being said, I was disappointed with this short piece.  After growing up watching the sweeping epic film, the novella felt too quick, there were no moments to pause on the beautiful despair of it all.  Although they are almost exactly the same (aside from the fact that Tristan and Susannah were actually married in the book and there was a lot of time spent on Susannah’s mental instability) I feel as though the film makers did well with the screenplay and turned mere 80 pages into something amazing.  Obviously, kudos to Jim Harrison for his awesome original storyline – but when it comes down to it – I’ll hypocritically watch the movie on repeat before I re-read the book.

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