I’m not one of those

On the eve of Twilight’s Breaking Dawn release, I must say…I have absolutely NO desire to stand in line for 2 hours in the godforsaken cold just so I can see a movie with a theater full of screaming girls. I don’t want to sit for two hours getting kicked in the back. I don’t want to huff and puff when the pre-adolescent girls pull out their cells to update their Facebook statuses mid-movie. I mean, it’s SO IMPORTANT for your “friends” to know you’re “watching” the movie, right? Then watch the darn movie and put your phones away.

:deep breath:

Don’t get me wrong. I want to watch Breaking Dawn. I do. (I would’ve rather watched the whole shebang in one film instead of two, but whatever, Hollywood.) I just want to watch it when I won’t have to share an armrest with a stranger or stand in long ass lines for a $4.00 box of Goobers.

I’m just sayin’…

Loss of a Teardrop Diamond and Emotional Pulls

I decided to watch The Loss of a Teardrop Diamond tonight. It’s an unfinished screenplay by Tennessee Williams about a snobby debutante who bribes a hunky plantation workers’ son (played by Chris Evans) to escort her to a series of coming out parties.

I watched, skeptically, as themes of euthanasia, abortion, drugs, division between laboring classes and sex before marriage were tossed about the screen.

As much as I enjoyed the scenery…

…I just felt the characters lacked depth. Sure, I felt for the bored, rich girl that no one liked. I longed for her to be redeemed. I wanted to see the workers’ son, for once, not swallow his pride, but stand up for what he really wanted. I didn’t know if the two leads were going to hook up in the end.

The movie just didn’t pull me in.

Until it did.

Like one minute from the end. [Spoiler alert]

They’re standing side-by-side on a levee, overlooking a river tinseling with moonlight. They refuse to look at one another. He’s angry at his position, at her, at what she’s asked of him time and time again. She’s longing for his love, but doesn’t know how to show it.

She asks him for a kiss.

Silence.

She turns toward him, a tear rolling down her cheek.

His gaze slowly follows as it runs to her chin. His eyes linger on her lips. He’s holding his breath. He turns away.

Her breath is punched out of her. Knowing he’s rejected her for the second time in one night, she walks away, defeated. But the instant she turns, he grabs her arm.

My stomach caught.

She glances at their hands, at him, tears falling freely to the earth that’s bound him into such a lowly position. He pulls her close.

Cue credits.

The message I took from this movie wasn’t Williams’ stance on abortion or sex before marriage or drugs or euthanasia. It came back to writing. It only takes one scene…one emotional tug…one stomach catch…for your writing to shift from meager to spectacular.

Thanks to that one scene my opinion of the movie completely changed. What girl wants to beg a guy to kiss her, only to be turned down? It’s not a stretch to imagine the total embarrassment she would feel. What girl wants to have to convince a guy to be with her time and time again? It’s not a stretch to imagine how desperation would taint her spirit.

It wasn’t the strong, universal themes from the movie that will stick with me…it was the simple guy/girl dynamic. The dynamic I can relate to on a very real level. THAT’S what got me. Not the complex plot. Not the stunning imagery. Not the controversial themes.

Just the simple human emotion.

Now to figure out how to elicit that emotional tug from a reader…if you come up with a simple fail-proof formula, be sure to let me know. Until then, I’m going to netflix some other movies that’ll help me finish up my insane-plotting sessions for Book 3.

Why do men chase women?

Pardon my 1980’s nerdiness as I take you back to:

Now, I know you must be thinking, why on earth is she talking about a movie that was filmed over twenty years ago…

The reason is that it’s funny. And romantic. *And it was on television last night* But it also has enough cheesy lines to have your eyes rolling until they ache.

Case in point:

Ronnie: I love you!
Loretta: (slaps him twice) Well snap out of it!

And

Rose: How’s his mother?
Loretta: She’s dying. But I could still hear her big mouth.

You can’t stop watching the film for more than the crazy Italian family dynamic and the witty…I mean, cheesy, dialogue. Despite yourself, you end up liking the characters. You want to watch them go crazy trying to work themselves out…it’s that funny.

Throughout the film, an Italian mother, Rose, (who is being cheated on by her brash Italian husband), asks the age-old question: Why do men chase women?

By her question and her current circumstance, I assume she means “Why do men in relationships chase other women?”

Johnny (the man betrothed to her daughter Loretta) answers that men chase women because (and forgive my paraphrasing here), man was created by God, then women were created from Adam’s rib, and now men feel like a part of them is missing…so they search for the woman to fill the hole in their chest.

Rose isn’t having his thought-provoking answer because technically her husband had already found his rib…in her! When Rose questions Johnny on this, he verifies her belief. She believes that men are afraid of death.

My favorite line in the whole movie happens when she’s sitting in the living room, watching her husband walk in after a rendezvous with the other woman. She says “I just want you to know, no matter what you do you’re going to die, just like everybody else.” Classic. He thanks her (THANKS HER!) and retreats upstairs to their room where he’ll, no doubt, sleep alone. We never know, but that’s my best guess because the next night (or maybe it was the night before), she has dinner with another man…

She asks him the question “Why do men chase women?” He says (and again with my paraphrasing) that men who are feeling like a shadow of their former selves can live inside the reflection of a young woman. They can see their former glorious self through the eyes of a woman who thinks highly of them. But, over the course of a few weeks, the women realize they’re falling for a shadow and not the man they thought he was, causing the man to chase another young woman.

Rose isn’t having this answer either.

It got me thinking…Why do men chase women? Boredom? Stress? Something missing from their current relationship? Taking the easy way out? Primal instinct? Whatcha think?

Time Traveler’s Wife: Full Circle

I finally watched the movie. (I bought it for myself for Valentine’s Day–I’m kinda lame, huh?) Overall, I thought it was great. I laughed. I cried. I gave it Five Stars. But, hey, I’m no Ebert.

If you don’t want to know details about the book, you should probably stop reading at this point. Spoilers ahead! I’m holding no details back!

Like I said, I loved it. However, there were things…major things…things that made the story great…removed from the movie completely. During the Director’s Cut in the bonus features, it was mentioned that they wanted to keep the story as focused on the hero and heroine as possible. It’s a romance, so believe me when I say OF COURSE they should focus on the journey between these two remarkable people. Deleting the romance between Clare and Gomez was an acceptable side-story to cut. However interesting it was that Clare latched onto him physically after Henry was gone, I can still understand why it was chosen to be left out. (Let me tell you, I was riveted as I read, even at 2am.)

But what about all the parts in the book where there were two Henry’s at any one point in time? What about the parts that made the book leap from good to fantastic? Like when one Henry would help another out with a major problem (IE: mother’s death, father’s drinking, adolescent issues)? Or when young Henry’s father finds him (awkwardly sexual moment) in his bedroom with a much older man (whom the reader knows is older Henry)? These would have been great things to explore in a movie…it’s what weaved a fantastic love story into something larger…something that reached into the hearts of people everywhere…something I would’ve liked to see on the big screen.

I take comfort in the fact that if I can’t see actors portraying it, I can always go back to my book where the characters are always the same, never changing. In that way I kind of feel like Henry, biding time until I can escape reality and get back to the place I love to be; buried deep in its pages. And the novel is much like Clare, waiting patiently for my return.

Time Traveler’s Wife

I don’t know why, but I can’t watch this trailer without crying. I think my sadness comes from the book’s premise that once you’ve experienced the love of a lifetime, your soulmate, your one and only, every day, every second, every moment after that you’re waiting to experience another day, second, moment with that person. If time or “waiting” were the only thing separating the two of you, wouldn’t you be sad too?

I’ve read the book, read it in a single day actually. 400+ pages is A LOT in a day, even for me. I don’t think I could see straight after. But I haven’t seen the movie. Yet. The trailer is enough. If you haven’t seen it, you should. And maybe when I watch the movie I’ll post a critique here too…

Until then…

Sherlock!

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I went to the movies last night (hooray for date nights!), and watched Sherlock Holmes. I’ve never read the original short stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, but have read articles that this latest movie is closer to the original story than the fables from the past.

Previous accounts and shows tell of a Sherlock Holmes who is book-bound and articulate, but a nerd with a boyish accomplice, found in Watson. The movie shows a Holmes more like James Bond than a geek, fighting enemies hands on, pouncing on cases right and left with no fear. You know, the Holmes we always wanted to believe was buried under the plaid deer stalker hat.

Good movie. Great characters. (Truth be told, I like watching Rachael McAdams, Jude Law and Robert Downey Jr. no matter the roles they play.) Most of all, I like the dimensions added to the previously muted character. And they left open the possibility of a sequel. How cool is that?