Saturday, January 19, 2008

The post-holiday crash

After blowing off most of December and a large portion of January I've decided to pick up the slack. The holidays went too fast; I didn't do squat (out of the large group of self-assigned projects I came up with for myself). Mostly I vegged out and watched junky movies on TV, reveling in the fact I was not in my office.

Couple of movies I saw are worth mentioning: Charlie Wilson's War and Juno.

Charlie Wilson's War was an odd film -- Tom Hanks did a credible job as Charlie Wilson, the "liberal from Lufkin," part of a now almost extinct breed: the Texas Liberal Democrat. Some of my cohorts would take exception to his implication in the military buildup funded by the CIA, but given what replaced him -- the likes of Tom Delay and Jeb Hensarling -- I'd take a dozen more like him. Julia Robert's part was a complete throwaway; as best as I can tell, she was cast just to sell tickets. Philip Seymour Hoffman on the other hand, playing a cynical CIA agent, gave a stellar performance. Overall, a good movie but somewhat unclear about the type of film it wanted to be.

Juno on the other hand, is a great quirky indie film, another in a string of outstanding Canadian-American productions, with nary a bad performance in the lot. Although about teen pregnancy it avoided being preachy or heavy-handed, trading these for attitude and spunk. It's hard not to mention veteran actor J.K. Simmons (perhaps best know as J.J. Jameson in the Spider-Man films) who is outstanding as the father of pregnant teen Juno. Jennifer Garner gives a nuanced performance as the would-be adoptive mom as well. My advice: go see this film.

I'm now trying to get back into the swing of posting...look for a rapid fire of updates.

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