Tuesday, October 02, 2007

September Movies & Books

I'm home sick from work. And I'm not happy. I had started not to feel well on Saturday, I guess, although I didn't realise it as I thought I was simply hungover. My first clue was when driving to knitting club that night and I wasn't speeding. Not only was I not speeding, I wasn't even doing the speed limit. That only happens when I'm super tired or not feeling well. I got up Sunday morning for church even though Mom wasn't in town and had to leave before 11:00 since I was not myself. I came home and climbed into bed and slept for over two hours.

I didn't feel like doing anything after my nap and just veged on the couch waiting for bed time. I went to bed at 7:00 p.m. I snoozed Monday morning for two hours and then got up and sent the bossman an e-mail saying I was staying home. I slept until 8:30, when I got up, took a shower and called the doctor for an appt., and was back in bed by 9:30 and I slept until 12:30. My dr.'s appt. was at 1:30 and I got to drive 30 miles not feeling well in driving rain. I saw more accidents on that trip. It was craziness.

I had a retirement party to attend yesterday afternoon at the University. One of my political science profs who had left my department (Social Sciences) to go to another department and start a Masters in Public Administration was finally retiring. He's one of the good eggs, so I was happy that Carol L had forwarded me the e-mail. I got to see a good number of people I do miss from my U days. The Famous (or is that Infamous) Uncle Bernie was there and as always he asked me if I still live "at that kibbutz." Yup, I replied. A good number of my fellow collegians have lived in my apt. buildings over the years, hence "kibbutz." He's a very funny guy, my Uncle Bernie.

I crashed early last night after the debauchery (ha ha) that is a University retirement party (and picking up my antibiotics). I got up and went to work this morning but left by 9:30 and was home and in bed by 10:00 and took another three hour nap. I've been up for 30 minutes and I feel like I could go right back to bed.

Instead, it's on to the Books read and Movies watched in the 9th month of this year.


The Beautiful and Damned by F. Scott Fitzgerald - 297 pages - with this book I finish with F. Scott Fitzgerald. He has some books of short stories I could read if I were so inclined, but I don't like short stories as a general rule and after this book I'm pretty much done with F. Scott. I bloody well hated this book. It was all I could do to finish it. His two main characters, Anthony and Gloria Patch, were not in the least bit likable. The book reminded me of the Shopoholics series (a series I despised with every fiber of my being) in that these people had no concept of money. Hell, I know I'm no financial whiz kid, but I'm pretty clear on the concept of going to work to make money to pay my bills. I hurried through the end of this book because I was not going to let this be the only book I read and have to declare it Book of the Month.

Under Orders by Dick Francis - 369 pages - I love and adore Dick Francis and when I saw a paperback at Borders last month with his name on it I about fell over because I had heard that he wasn't going to write anymore after the death of his wife, Mary. I was very upset that I had missed it coming out in hardback, but I decided to live with the disappointment of having it in paperback. It was brilliant and exciting and very much worth waiting the year for, although I'm still not happy about it. I remember asking about a new book from him sometime last year and being told he wasn't writing anymore. I guess I was a few months early in that request. If you have never read a Dick Francis mystery, you are cheating yourself of a good time. All his books take place within the world of horse racing and although I've never ridden a horse and in fact, they scare the crap out of me and you won't find me near one, I love all his books.

Book of the Month: Under Orders by Dick Francis, of course!!!


Firefly - the entire series. It made me sad all over again that there was only the one season.

The Day The Earth Stood Still (N) 1951 - 93% - After Fermi and Schprockie recommended this in the same week, I put it in my Netflix queue. I have to say that although I am generally skeptical of sci-fi (yeah, I know, ignore my Babylon5, SG-1 and Firefly ways), especially 1950s sci-fi, this was a very good movie. I appreciated the anti-war message, in particular.

A Touch of Fate (N) 2003 - No rating - I had caught most of this movie on some high number channel the day I got my digital cable box installed, but I had to leave before the movie was over and I had to know what happened, so I Netflixed it. It was pretty Lifetime movie-ish I must say, but there is a part in the movie where Teri Hatcher punches out her big beefy cheating fiance and that part alone was worth the time spent. It looks like she actually hauls off and knocks him off his feet. Not that I advocate violence or anything like that.

The Magnificent Seven (Cable) 1960 - 92% - I had sworn that I wasn't going to watch this movie until I saw The Seven Samurai, but it was on cable and it just begged for me to watch it. It's still on my Netflix queue because I want to watch it again after The Seven Samurai (it's #2 in my queue) and the movie after The Seven Samurai starts my very own personal Steve McQueen Film fest. I'm sure everybody but me has seen The Magnificent Seven, so I don't have to say much. I loved the three little kids who idolised Charles Bronson.

Libel (N) 1959 - Not rated, hell, it's not even listed at rottentomatoes.com - This was the first movie I DVRd with my brandnew from Comcast DVR (I had one for a week that simply refused to work - talk about frustrating, I was on the phone with Comcast daily). Dirk Bogarde played three different roles in this movie, although IMDB only has him down for two. It was a very good movie with a neat little twist.

Downtown 81 - (N) 1981 - 71% - I added this to my Netflix queue after my friend Jason recommended it. (Apparently Jason didn't recommend this movie, so sorry for the misinformation.) I hated this movie, but I just couldn't get into it at all. I did enjoy the King Creole and the Coconuts songs, but basically that was it. I thought the acting was stilted and I was bored most of the time. I hated it so much I didn't even bother with most of the Extras which I normally love.

Serenity - (K) 2005 - 81% - When I finished watching Firefly, I, of course, had to watch Serenity once again. I'm still pissed at who got killed off. And I'm still waiting for another movie. *sigh*

The Ramones: Raw (Cable) 2004 - No rating - I DVRd this off VH1 Classic one night. If you're going to watch ONE documentary on The Ramones, don't pick this one, go with End of the Century, it's significantly better. Raw was more home movie-ish and it just didn't work for me.

Highlander: The Source (Sci-Fi Channel) 2007 - No rating - I was really looking forward to this movie. It reunited Peter Wingfield (whom we all know I love) and Adrian Paul and Jim Byrnes from the TV show which was fabulous - the TV show, not this movie. I actually kept notes during the movie it sucked so badly and I didn't want to forget my pithy comments. Here are my notes: "post-apocalyptic crap" - you would have thought they had learned their lesson with the second Highlander movie which everybody acknowledges as pure crap, "Shitty cinematography technique" which consisted of "funky lighting" and incredibly sped up fight scenes (hokey). At the very beginning of the movie, they introduced someone as one of only two people who could lead whomever to The Source...yeah, he died 15 minutes into the movie. This movie was complete dreck. The only high point being seeing Peter Wingfield in black motorcycle leather. And I'm thinking that won't work for most of you. Hell, it wasn't enough for me to ever watch it again. Stick with the TV show, that's what I say.

Movie of the Month: The Day The Earth Stood Still

It is now time for me to go back to bed.

Postscript: I just read over at Sal's (I'm sorry I just don't feel up to linking today) that it's Banned Book Week 2007. Here's a List of Most Frequently Challenged Books. I had Native Son by Richard Wright on my bookshelf, so I have decided to start reading it in honor of this most important event.

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At Tuesday, 02 October, 2007, Blogger Jason said...

I've never seen "Downtown 81". The movie that I recommend is "Basquiat" starring Jeffrey Wright as Basquiat. "Basquiat" is outstanding and I still highly recommend it. The soundtrack is awesome too...and David Bowie plays Andy Warhol!

At Tuesday, 02 October, 2007, Blogger Kathleen said...

Jason - Okay, then where on earth did I hear about Downtown 81? I thought it was you. Hmm. I've seen Basquiat, as you gave me your VHS...it was much better than Downtown 81.

At Tuesday, 02 October, 2007, Blogger Sal said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At Tuesday, 02 October, 2007, Blogger Sal said...

Downtown 81 was my fault, and I loved it. I didn't watch it for acting at all, it was more the joy of watching Basquiat in his native element. I took it for being a pleasant walk through post punk Manhattan in 1981 where you bump into Debbie Harry, Fab 5 Freddie, Tav Falco and everyone else. I can totally understand why you disliked it if you were looking for a story.

BTW, I called in sick too I'm exhausted and don't know why. Sleeping all afternoon hasn't helped either.

At Tuesday, 02 October, 2007, Blogger dr sardonicus said...

I can't call in sick, 'cos everybody else is...

At Tuesday, 02 October, 2007, Blogger fermicat said...

I'm happy that you watched and enjoyed The Day The Earth Stood Still. Movie of the month! The best genre movies (and books) are those that tell a compelling story that holds up on its own.

Sorry you are under the weather. Get well soon!

"Gort! Klaatu barada nikto!"

At Wednesday, 03 October, 2007, Blogger Kathleen said...

Sal - I had a feeling it was you when it wasn't Jason, but didn't have the energy to look it up. Your rosary is finally finished. Now to get to the post office. You might get it by Christmas. ;-)

Dr. - If I come to work sick, everybody around me yells at me because they don't want to get sick. I try to be accommodating. ;-)

Fermi - I'm glad I gave The Day The Earth Stood Still a chance, too. Thank you for the recommendation.

At Wednesday, 03 October, 2007, Blogger Heather said...

I saw Serenity before I watched Firefly so it was sad for me to watch the series and know who was going to die. That was probably the best TV series ever. And I'm not just saying that cuz Jayne is hot! Ha!

At Wednesday, 03 October, 2007, Anonymous Suzy said...

Hope you're feeling better, sweetie! Good thing you went to the dr in spite of the weather, since she gave you antibiotics.

I can't understand why half (or more) of those books are/were banned. WTF?

Just started the Dick Francis you gave me, and it's totally fun. So much better than all that critically-acclaimed crap! From now, on, you're the critic I listen to! :)

At Wednesday, 03 October, 2007, Blogger Kathleen said...

Heather - Ask for Firefly for Christmas, if you don't already own it. You'll watch it again and again.

Suzy - That Dick Francis was his first. And I've always said you can't go wrong with Dick Francis.

At Wednesday, 03 October, 2007, Blogger MyUtopia said...

Sorry to hear that you are not feeling well.
The day the earth stood still is my dad's favorite movie.

At Wednesday, 03 October, 2007, Blogger LL said...

Get to feelin' better. That's an order! Then we can look at a globe and compare latitudes. ;)

At Wednesday, 03 October, 2007, Blogger fermicat said...

Oh, and I am so approving of your liking Firefly and Serenity. Oh yeah!

At Thursday, 04 October, 2007, Blogger LL said...

What the heck? Are you channeling PinTA now fermi? Shameful... :ewink:

At Thursday, 04 October, 2007, Blogger fermicat said...

Great minds think alike. And lust after Nathan Fillion.

At Friday, 05 October, 2007, Anonymous The Zombieslayer said...

I'll check out that list of banned books in a bit.

I loved Serenity. But I've never seen Firefly. And yes, I was bummed that (I won't say the person's name) died in Serenity.

I'll need to read that F Scott Fitzgerald book. Of him, only read the Great Gaspby which I loved.

I secretly like the Ramones. Don't tell anyone.

At Friday, 05 October, 2007, Blogger Kathleen said...

MyUtopia - Hope you have a great time in DTW.

LL - I wish I responded well to orders. ;-)

Fermi - I love love love Nathan Fillion - did you know he's on Desperate Housewives now? Guess I'll have to start watching!

LL - Nothing wrong with channeling Pinta.

Zombie - How could you not love The Ramones!? And I definitely recommend you check out Firefly.

At Sunday, 07 October, 2007, Blogger LL said...

"And lust after Nathan Fillion."

Oh brother...

"Nothing wrong with channeling Pinta."

Wanna bet? ;)

Ok... so I looked up the Lats...

Me= 42.24 North
You= 42.34 North

See? I told ya.

At Tuesday, 09 October, 2007, Blogger Heather said...

I forgot to mention that I absolutely loved The Magnificent Seven - I had such a crush on Yul Brynner afterwards! :)

At Tuesday, 09 October, 2007, Blogger Beth said...

You know how I love F. Scott. I think his short stories are his best work ... and I'm not a fan of short stories either. Some of his, like "Emotionally Bankrupt" or "Diamond as Big as the Ritz" or "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" are just genius.

I hope you're feeling ship shape soon.

At Wednesday, 10 October, 2007, Blogger Ben O. said...

Ugh . . . hope you feel better soon.

The reading list sounds really interesting this time around . . .

Ben O.

At Monday, 15 October, 2007, Blogger Fantasy Writer Guy said...

Kats, You're it!



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