Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The Brave One

The Brave One: *** (Good)

TheBraveOne I wouldn't necessarily call this a good movie.  I felt a little slimy after seeing it, because this is a movie that is pro-vigilantism. 

Jodi Foster and her fiance, Naveen Andrews from "Lost", are victimized by a gang.  The gang beats the fiance to death and leaves her for dead as well.  And... they steal her dog, a beautiful German Shepherd who did nothing to protect them during the assault.  I knew this was going to happen, so it was hard to watch them walk into Central Park the night of the assault.  They were so happy....

Terrence Howard plays the detective who is trying to solve some vigilante killings.  Since she is the vigilante, their paths cross and the interaction between them is the majority of the movie.

Foster and Howard are good, good actors.

This is violent movie (R for violence) that is also good, but you have to be in the mood (once again) to see people blown away.

This has been a violent fall movie season so far!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

3:10 To Yuma

3:10 to Yuma: *** (Good)

310ToYuma Today's movie was an old fashioned western shoot 'em up, with good vs. lots of evil.  Russell Crowe and Christian Bale are fine to watch, both good actors and I believed their character portrayals.

I can't count the number of people who were brutally gunned down or blown up during the 117 minutes running time.  Too many.  The R rating for violence is well-deserved.

The story is about a bad man and his gang (Russell Crowe and friends), a good man and his family (Christian Bale, etc.), a bounty hunter (Peter Fonda!), and various other good and bad people.  It starts out showing just how bad the bad men are and just how regular the good man is.  The bad man is captured and most of the interesting part of the movie is when the good man & co. must escort the bad man to prison.

The Arizona scenery was nice :-)

If you are in a mood to watch over-the-top violence and good acting, then go see it.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Pink Martini


They are good.  Go see them.  Buy their music.  Visit their web site.

J and I went to see them in person at Laxon Auditorium.  J has their "Hey Eugene" album and it's a lot of fun.  In person they are even more fun.  They are excellent musicians.  They can play just about anything.

We will go see them again if we can.  We are lucky they stopped in Chico.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Seaside, OR Vacation

We had a great week in the area around Seaside, OR.  The pictures are here.  I'll be adding comments to the pictures later, but maybe the titles in flickr will be enough for now.

20070911SeasideBalcony  20070911SeasideView

Here is our World Mark resort.  Our apartment was the one pointed to by the white arrow (first photo), and our view (second photo) was just fine.  For most of the week the weather was overcast, but it rained only one day.  Neither of us used the pool, spa or other amenities, and neither of us got wet in the ocean.  The kitchen in our unit was small but serviceable.

Most days we took a morning walk on the promenade bordering the beach.  It's a nice way to start the day... level, salt air, sounds of the ocean, gardens, wild flowers and shore birds.

We saw some Lewis and Clark history (Fort Clatsop, Seaside Saltworks, L&C canoo landing spot).

We saw a water fall (Youngs River Falls).

We saw some history at Fort Stevens State Park (Peter Iredale wreck, WWII Bunkers).

We saw a light house (Cape Meares).

We went on a walking tour in Portland, OR... we ate our way through the Pearl District for 4 hours - very nice.

Speaking of eating, we had lunches out most days at some nice restaurants.  If you don't count the food on the walking tour in Portland, I think the best food we had was at the Heron and Beaver Pub in the Shelburne Inn in Long Beach, WA.  Of course, the ice cream in Tillimook was fine.

Books were read.  Movies were watched. No knitting was done, but I did manage to find a skein of sock yarn at Creative Beginnings in Seaside (nice store with a friendly cat).

Okay, what's the next vacation?

PS:  One day, the day that it rained, I was sick with a cold.  Both Oregon and Washington states require a prescription in order to get effective cold pills (the ones with pseudoephedrine). Phooey. Blast those meth dealers! � and blast the legislators for thinking that requiring a prescription for cold tablets will stop the meth business! I heard from the people in the hospital emergency room (only med service open on Sunday in Seaside, Or) that meth now comes primarily from Mexico, and that the meth being produced in Oregon is now made with a substitute for pseudoephedrine � something more dangerous to use (blows up a lot), and more harmful to users. Stupid meth dealers. Stupid legislators.  Poor cold sufferers.

Monday, September 10, 2007

House prepped for cats

Read on if you are interested in how cats are spoiled; otherwise, move along, there's nothing here for you today.

I'm always so proud when the top of my desk shows some wood - it's usually covered in paper, knitting, etc.  So, I went around taking pictures in the house today and decided to picture all the ways we spoil the cats.

Here's the slideshow (made at widgetbox.com).

So the tally is: Three covered chairs, one covered love seat, a window seat, four scratching posts/boards/mats,  five heated cat beds, one expensive pagoda, towels in dining room and bedroom, two litter boxes, four feeding stations, and lots of kitty love.

Michelle, the pet nanny, keeps it all in order while we are gone.  We told the kitties she's coming but they are not impressed.  They know the suitcases are not a good sign.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Death At A Funeral

Review on Rotten Tomatoes Death at a Funeral: *** Good

A predictable British comedy.  Even though you know ahead of time what's going to happen, you laugh, well at least smile, when it does happen.

The only surprise in the film (for me) was the part played by Peter Dinklage, the short guy on the left in the poster.  Dinklage has been working quite a bit lately, and I always like his characters.

Another one of my favorites was Alan Tudyk, who played the pilot in the TV series Firefly.

The rest of the characters were familiar and welcome faces from British television.

I won't spoil it for you by saying what happens.  You can wait for this one on DVD, but seeing it in the theaters is good too.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

ALA Read Posters

Link to ALA

Wouldn't this look good in our Young Adult section of the Butte County Library?  Hmmm?

Things like this are sold by the American Library Association, bless their pointy little heads.

... and then Pat suggested this one :-)

Margaret Cho Read

Monday, September 3, 2007

The Cat Days of Summer

Happy Labor Day, USA folks.  This is the day we rest and get ready for the productive days of Fall and the overindulgence of the Winter Holidays.  I took some pictures in the yard this morning.

20070903 Sammy Napping

Sammy is the black spot in the middle of the picture.  He'd rather nap in a shady pile of leaves than be pampered inside the house - truly a cat's cat.

All the pictures taken today have little descriptions under them with some garden news for this Summer.

This year we have seen signs of distress in the trees because there wasn't much rain last Winter.  The Pistachios are not lush and their berries look dry and hard.  The Sycamores around town are dry and branches are breaking off in a breeze.

20070903 DogwoodNow that Fall is hinting at an appearance I can begin wishing ahead for a good wet Winter.

See?  The turning of the leaves has begun on the Dogwood.  And the Hackberry tree is already dropping a few leaves in the fountain on breezy days.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Talk To Me

NY Times Review Talk To Me: **** Very Good

Don Cheadle is one of the best actors working today.  I've seen him in lots of things, including the Ocean's ... films, Crash, and Hotel Rowanda.  In each role he disappears to become the character he is playing.  This time he is Petey Greene, a well-loved  radio and tv talk show host and comedian in Washington D.C. during the 1960s and 1970s.

Petey Greene was born in 1931 and died in 1984.  The film covers the last 18 years of his life.  He died at 53 of cancer.  But the film isn't about his dying.  It's about his living. 

The acting from the rest of the cast, especially Chiwetel Ejiofor and Taraji P. Henson, was great.

The costumes - clothes of the 60s and 70s - are perfect.  The music is just wonderful from those years.

Go see it, or if you missed it get the DVD when it comes out.