On Wednesday I saw…

Svend at the Film Archive, where together we watched a short documentary about an old Swedish couple called Swedish Tango. It was very nice and sweet and it made me want to dance and it made me very happy to be in a loving relationship and everything.

Then I met up with my Angel-in-Law and purchased silky polyester in brown with green and cream spots all overlapping on each other. Then we came back and Lee and I saw The Dark Knight which, at the risk of being terribly unhip I have to say I didn’t love.

I can’t quite yet put my finger on why I didn’t love it, it’s partly because it was such a very bleak movie that it wasn’t much fun to watch, and it’s partly because I didn’t feel like it was a story about Batman at all, more a movie about the GCPD and Harvey Dent, and although I really thought Heath was a very good Joker I just….meh. Plus, it really needed an edit.

So, after that we had Nando’s for dinner, and played some kick-ass Rock Band and then I met up with Mr Svend again for The Man From London, which really, re-reading the write up, I should have known better. Svend has already mentioned that it was slow. I was going to do with an understatement of ‘it’s not pacey’. In fact, I was so tempted to leave when I realised that the opening shot of a boat was in fact going to last five minutes.

It was very artfully made, to be sure, and there was an interesting story in there, but I think that if it was up to me it would be roughly an hour shorter. I was pleased that Lee had not fallen for my madness and got a ticket, because he would have complained

Thursday I just saw one movie at the cinema, and I very nearly didn’t go, but I’m glad I did. It was The Universe of Keith Haring and it was upbeat and fun and cool, and I remembered just how much I love his work. He seemed like a good person. The doco was pieced together from interviews with his friends and family and footage of Keith himself. Yoko Ono was very cool, she talked about his funeral. It made me want to paint and to alter tshirts and to make things for the people I love. And take photos, and sew stuff.

I did some shopping and then came home to type. My superhero chicklit is up to 46, 238 words, so yay me.

Then it was some more Rock Band and people came over and we watched another movie for movie night.

PoF: Gala
CO: Now to look at the goodies on the online Keith Haring account.

Things I Love Thursday

Nice and early today 🙂

  • I love Rock Band and I love that I have gotten past a couple of mental/physical blocks on drumming and bits that used to confuse the hell out of me now make sense. It’s good to notice that your skills are improving. I also love buying new clothes and shoes for my sprites.
  • I am grateful for Time off work when I am not feeling sick, and can get stuff done. I have big plans for today, yesterday I saw a couple of movies and bought fabric for my dress for the Windy Lindy swing ball and my Angel-in-law is starting work on it now….exciting! I also posted a book someone won off me and changed the sheets on the bed and played Rock Band and finished reading….
  • Once Upon a Time in the North is a little shot novel by Phillip Pullman, set int the world of His Dark Materials. It’s about a young Lee Scoresby and his first meeting with Iorek Byrnison. It’s very good if you like those characters, which I do. I got it out from the library, but if you buy it you get a ‘rally to the North Pole’ board game with it.
  • I love that nightfall is getting later, it really makes a difference to me if the sun is still out at 5.30pm, it means that summer is actually coming and I won’t be trapped in midwinter forever. Sometimes I forget these things.
  • My friends and family. It’s nice to see so much of Svend during the festival, as well as a few other dedicated film festivaller friends. Plus aforementioned Angel-in-law making me a dress for no payment, and bonding with Lee’s sister as a result of taking up swing. I really am lucky to have so many lovely people in my life.

Honourable mentions: Getting into bed with clean sheets and having a warm night under a flannel sheet and a polar fleece blanket, letting myself not write and not feeling guilty, snuggling, hot chocolate, fresh scones, oaty hotcakes, legwarmers, laughing.
Please do share your list of happy-making things!

Tuesday movie

Another movie that made me sad, thematically very similar to The Savages was And when did you last see your father?

This movie is bound to come back, seeing as how it stars Jim Broadbent, Colin Firth, Juliet Stevenson and Gina McKee (who was in Notting Hill). It’s a movie about living with an overwhelmingly blustering, loud, embarrassing, overbearing Father and coming to terms with losing someone you both love and hate.

Jim Broadbent is diagnosed with terminal cancer in the start of the movie, and son Colin Firth moves in to help his mum care for him. Much of the movie is flashbacks to childhood and the various good and bad moments that make up a life. Family secrets are explored also.

As you would expect from the cast, it is very well acted and really a fantastic movie. Mostly lighthearted, the theme of death is still present most of the time and it becomes very emotional indeed.
Highly recommended.

Then I came home and we borrowed Rock Band and started a new band called Daddy Issues 2.0 in honour of Veronica Mars and the movies from the past few days. And since we’re unlocking songs for our PS3 we played a lot of low tier songs incredibly well. I drum with Jenni Talula, an anime fairy and Lee made another guitarist called Lee Clapton. Fun times.

I have the next few days off work, and although the weather is shockingly bad I intend to enjoy them very much.

To do: Tshirt surgeries for Trade Me
Rock Band practice, working on getting to expert level on drums
Lots of writing of novel
Visiting parents
Writing up some roleplaying stuff
Visit Te Papa?
Attend Film festival day time screenings
See The Dark Knight

Lee has my cold. It is affecting him pretty badly…I won’t say he’s malingering just yet though, because I remember that Thursday and Friday last week I wasn’t feeling that crash hot.

PoF: not up
CO: fun time holiday!

Monday night movies

Lee bought a Playstation 3 on the way home from work yesterday. We weren’t able to mess around with it for too long though, we had to go to Brooklyn for a couple of film festival movies at the Penthouse.
How best to explain Fighter?
Ways in which Fighter is exactly the same as Bend it Like Beckham.

  • Asian teenage girl loves a sport and is forbidden to play it by her family.
  • Father wants teenage girl to be a doctor. excel academically.
  • Teenage girl has an older sibling who is getting engaged, but the fiance’s family is very strict and teenage girl’s playing of forbidden sport destroys engagement.
  • Teenage girl falls in love with a boy connected to the sport who is not of a race her parents will approve of.
  • Teenage girl excels at forbidden sport and shows her worth that way.
  • Teenage girl is dramatically torn between her culture and her passion for forbidden sport

Ways in which Fighter differs from Bend it Like Beckham.

  • Lead girl is Turkish, not Indian and the movie is set in Denmark, not England, her family is Muslim instead of Sheik. Sikh.
  • The forbidden sport is Kung Fu
  • Older sibling is a brother
  • White boy connected to sport is not as hot as Jonathan Rhys Meyers
  • Rather than getting her family to approve of her excellence in sport, Aicha ‘won’ by losing to the Turkish boy who is mean to her.
  • Fighter had ninjas in it.
  • Fighter was neither as fun or uplifting as Bend it Like Beckham.

Following a dinner of UpandGo and cheezels, we saw The Savages.

This movie wasn’t as funny and lighthearted as the write up and the first 20 minutes implied it would be. It was actually a very sad, introspective look at what it’s like when your parents grow old and senile. Laura Linney and Phillip Seymour Hoffman were fantastic, utterly believable as siblings. Both sweet, damaged, neurotic characters.

I loved this movie, it’s really fantastic, but yeah, sadder than the black comedy we had thought we were in for.

PoF: hyperactive
CO: salad?

The weekend’s movies

Animation for Kids. This is the first year in forever, maybe ten years, where I have made the decision not to see Animation Now! There’s just too many boring annoying wanky ones. On the other hand, the kids collection is always fun, vibrant and story oriented. Therefore much better viewing.

I enjoyed this collection a lot actually, there was a very cool one called ‘The Goat Who Ate Time’, I liked ‘Animatou’ with all the different animal styles, the gorgeous look of ‘T�t ou tard’ about a squirrel and a bat and the fun of ‘A Sunny Day’.

I also really liked Homage to the grip (actual video!) Because it is fun and cute and colourful and has drama and neat music.

Max & Co is a Swiss/French stop motion animation feature about a city of animals and a corrupt corporation. There are also themes about genetic engineering, love, and the redemption of a deadbeat father.

It was very stylish and coherent, the whole thing just looked great and all the characters were so very cool. Plus, the feline lady Cat looked a lot like Giffy.

Robin Hood. I don’t think I had ever seen an Errol Flynn movie before this, I liked it. It was very OTT and campy and silly but great fun. I liked realising that they cast someone not as pretty as Errol Flynn to play Will Scarlet, and the kind of random reactions people had at various times. My favourite bit was when Prince John, Guy of Gisborne and an evil bishop are conspiring to kill King Richard, they finish up and see a skirt corner disappear – Lady Marian has been eavesdropping! They follow her a little way. Prince John says “She might have heard us.”

The others agree, they all stare after her ominously, then as one, turn and go back the way they came.
Yeah, because if someone overhears you plotting treason, it’s probably fine, right?

After that I met Svend, Amphigori and Lamprey and we saw Mongol . The story of the childhood and adolescence of Genghis Khan and his rise to power. It’s the first of a projected trilogy and I will want to see the next ones. It was a bit slow, but the actors all had a lot of charisma and were very engaging. Very very pretty Mongolian landscapes.

Let the Right One in is the story of a 12 year old boy who is being bullied at school, who makes friends with the girl who moves in next door. The girl is a vampire. As you can imagine, it was dark and scary and vicious, she was a very hungry 12 year old vampire. It was exceptionally well made, creepy and dark and shocking, and very disturbing as their relationship developed. It also had some very tender moments to balance it out.

I’m not in a hurry to see it again, but I definitely recommend it to horror fans.

Cinderella on Ice

In contrast to Evie’s entry on the same show, here’s how I thought the story of Cinderella on Ice went. Note to self, buy the programme first next time. Don’t assume you know the story!

Cinderella’s mother dies and she is very sad. Luckily her kind father puts her on a magical flying bed.
Ten years later a carnival comes to town and charms everyone, including attractive velvet coat guy. Cinderella dances with everyone in town, not sure if she was sleeping with everyone or leading on all the boys or just very friendly. Her father has remarried a fabulously dressed but mean woman who doesn’t really want to dance with him and encourages her daughters to exclude Cinderella.

Cinderella and her Dad have a very close relationship but he doesn’t seem to realise that she’s being bullied. He is amazing and can skate while carrying two other people.

The carnival brought Cindy’s Gypsy Godmother to town and she causes all the clocks to go haywire. Cinderella’s father it turns out, is a watchmaker and stays up all night with his two apprentices trying to battle the crazy clocks. But they don’t come out to dance so it’s useless.

There’s this whole bit where they put on a ballet, which was a clever way to re-use the Swan Lake costumes from last year I think. Cinders is the best at dancing and falls in love with a buff ballet guy up until she sees velvet coat guy who has come to inspect the dancers with his father the Mayor of town. One of the stepsisters fails at being Odette so Cinderella gets to do it and then everyone loves her even more because she is the most awesome.

Celebratory/Angsty romantic ice dancing from Cinderella and Velvet coat where they keep missing each other. A bit like that Kylie and Jason music video from the 80’s.

In the morning the Mayor is giving everyone invites and Cinderella gets one but the stepsisters don’t because they don’t want to talk to the mayor, which is weird because they are in love with his son. Stepmother tells them off and they all pretend to include Cinderella and accept her so that they can steal her invitation

Cinderella runs crying to the gypsy who can help but warns that if she stays past midnight she will invoke the 13 o’clock, which involves fire and terror and badness. Personally I think 13 o’clock is the best character ever and needs to be in every story I write from now on. People with creepy symbols on sticks march about for way too long before making their symbols into a carriage that glows like magnesium. It was very ominous.


A reminder of the gypsy’s warning: personifications of each hour on the clock do a dance.
At the ball everyone can just come in because apparently the invitations don’t matter. Velvet coat has a new silvery velvet coat and can’t wait to show it off to Cinders, but she hasn’t arrived yet. There is lots of dancing. The town dressmaker and the mayor try to find the perfect woman (i.e. Cinders) by looking under the masks of all the ladies. Ooh err.

Cinderella and the gypsy show up and dance about. Velvet coat guy has to dance with the stepsisters and one of them makes him fall down (not on purpose) and then he is dancing with both and whacks them into each other so that they fall down. Which is kind of mean, but they won’t leave him alone because they are like Twilight fans or something.

Velvet coat and Cinderella get to dance together at last and they have an awesome time and everyone else kind of disappears like in the Pride and Prejudice movie where it’s just the two of them in the crowded room.

Then all the boys did a dance together and Velvet coat guy did this awesome ice skate jig and it was cool. Then ohnoes, it was 12 o’clock and I was all like, if the gypsy is right there why doesn’t she just remind Cinderella not to stay too late but she left it until like a minute before 12 to mention it and it was too late by then. Cinderella had to cope with all the clock hours coming to the ball and being scary and then 12 o’clock chased her and then the whole clock kind of ate her.

Somewhere in there her shoe came off and I can’t remember who got it off her, it could have been her father who was trying to stop 13 from stealing her, or it could have been 13 trying to catch hold of her. Anyway she had to skate on one foot.

Velvet coat gets the shoe and goes into the town square where everyone is very sympathetic to his plight but is too busy going home to get nookie to help him. The street sweeper tries to offer him nookie but he says no.

In the morning the dressmaker invites all the girls to try on the left behind boot but their feet are all wrong. Watching women skate with just one boot is a bit nerve racking. The stepsisters come to try on the boot and Velvet coat vetoes them subtly to the dressmaker, she tried the boot on their feet backwards so they definitely wouldn’t win.

The gypsy invokes the alive clock and they return Cinders through a trapdoor int he stage. She fits the boot and there is much happy dancing.

I’m pretty sure Cinderella’s father and the gypsy are in love by this point, because he gives her his pocket watch and did a ‘love’ gesture dance, but she has to leave with the carnival. Besides, he’s already married.
Then everyone else disappears too so that Velvet coat and Cinderella can have a romantic ‘now we are in love’ dance in which they are so happy they fly in the air quite a bit. It was very pretty.

The End.

But then the ice show dancers did an encore, which was awesome because it was just everyone doing their best tricks again. So good.

PoF: abed
CO: getting better


My throat is full of gunk. My brain is still fluff, my nose continues to run.
On the upside, it is now the weekend, and all I have planned for today is to sit in darkened theatres and be entertained.

From Cleolinda, the terrifying behaviour of Twilight fans is collected here. I especially recommend the video of Robert Pattinson’s reaction to the panel he appeared in.

Empties is the story of an old teacher who retires after wringing out a smelly sponge on an annoying student’s head. For the fourth time. Unable to remain still (or at home with his wife) he tries doing other jobs. It’s good and funny and warm and the lead’s machinations with those around him (match-making and subtle steering) were nicely done.
I liked it a lot.

After we saw that Lee and I had an antipasto platter at Stellar, which was nice. I especially liked the garlic bread and the artichoke.

Work yesterday was hard, not because of work, but because of my state of brain fuzz. I know I was busy all day but I don’t know what I actually got done. Didn’t make it to the wrestling like I had wanted to, because all day I was fighting not to just fall asleep. Well, I’ll go to the next one.

I read the second book of the Boston Jane series, which was much more satisfying because she wasn’t as whiney. She also talks about craft and baking, therefore I think Giffy should read them. I have the third one ready to read but the second Monster Blood Tattoo book is due back at the library first, so I am reading that now.

Vicks remains my friend.

PoF: in bed
CO: can I get stuff done today or should I take it easy?

Squee free stuff!

I got a letter to say that a courier hadn’t managed to deliver a package to my house from overseas. I thought it was a present from Giffy, which would have been awesome, but what I got was a free book from Meg Cabot!

It’s Allie Finkle’s Rules for Girls: volume 2 and a little white board for my own rules. So cute. The book is an uncorrected proof but it’s shiny and colourful and pretty, I put myself down for the giveaway on the off chance they would send it to an adult fan.


Now I just have to get hold of the first book in the series….

Just in case you were planning it, packages don’t get delivered to our home address. I think because the mail room is a garage which has its door open all day so there’s a security risk. So, if you’re going to send me presents, use my work address.
I thoroughly encourage anyone who can to send me presents.

Things I Love Thursday

At home, under a blanket with a constantly running nose, I try to focus my muzzy muzzy mind on what I am thankful for this week.

  • The Film Festival. Everything I have seen so far has been exceptionally good, with the exception of To each his own cinema which only had parts of good. Last night we saw Married Life and this morning I dragged my sniffly nose of doom to see Sharkwater. Both as I said, were exceptionally good. Shark water made me want to Save sharks, especially when they put up the estimate that the worldwide shark population has recently decreased by 90%. That’s not a small percent.
    You can see the trailer for it on the official website and see how cute the documentarian is. Also, how cool sharks are, and some of the gorgeous shots of whales, sharks and seals, etc in the image galleries.

  • Layers of clothing that keep me warm in the bitter icey cold. It is very bitter and icey out there today. I *heart* my fur lined hoodie.
  • Juicy boigers. I am addicted to Burger Fuel. So so good.
  • Vicks Vaporub. It clears my nose and allows me to sleep. Plus I love the smell of it.
  • I just read the final trade paperback of Y: The Last Man which I liked. The whole series has the feel of an action movie, but a road movie with lots of action in it. I wonder how it will translate to the big screen….I wonder if Shi LeBeouf will be able to portray the Yorick I love from the comic.
  • My Lee, who does not judge me but supports me and who I am trying very hard to make life easy for in any way I can, to relieve some of the stress. He’s a honey.
  • Allysa’s bakery have tasty donuts, gingerbread and Belgian biscuits. If it wasn’t for Mr Bun it’d probably be my closest bakery as well, well, maybe the Cosy Cake shop would be.

Honourable mentions: Via Cleolinda,
Dinosaur in the museum?
I’m with the kid, I’d be crying. But it’s super cool to watch from the safety of a video! Slow cooker burritos, writing, being inside out of the rain, having a clean house and going to sleep at night when I am warm and safe and comfortable.

PoF: warm layers
CO: blowing my nose

stay a while

Today I posted the first few chapters of Kiki to Longacre. Longacre do not mention how long it will take them to get back to you, so I’m going to forget about it (ha ha) and just see what happens.
I will focus on my current writing, which is going well, even if I am a smidge writer’s blocky in terms of the next plot point. I’ll get there.

Film festival movies I have seen since I last updated:

Jar City, Icelandic cop movie. CSI: Reykjavik. Svend has already written about it here. I really liked it, for a bunch of reasons which include awesome main characters, twisty strange mystery, funny jokes and intelligent plot.
I also liked it because it made me think of an awesome episode of awesomeness for our PTA game in which my character and Svend’s do the whole police procedural thing. So cool.

Ben X is a study of a teenager with Asperger’s who has a rich and full life on an MMPORG but is unable to fit in at school, and is in fact, constantly bullied. Morgue has written it up here, but I think I liked it more than he did. Maybe. I really liked all the blending of the online animation and the real world. I loved the main character to pieces, we had insight into his thoughts via voiceover, which helped, since it was an almost silent performance from him.
It was a difficult film to watch, with the bullying and the people being cruel or indifferent. That said, it was worth it. The pay off is awesome.

Do I say awesome too much? I don’t know.

At the Kirk’s sale I purchased cheap legwarmers, grey ones and red knitted over the knee warmers with silver knitted through. Half price at $8.00 a pair makes Jenni happy. I also bought some gorgeous fine woven grey cotton tights with a vertical line built in. They are soft and lovely and I can’t wait to wear them.
I am also a little in love with fresh white men’s singlets but even the small is a smidge too big for me, I took up the shoulders by two inches each side. I also bought the new Meg Cabot book Airhead from Borders, then came home and did some writing of new stuff for my chicklit. As I say above I’m a little plot-stuck but I’m not worried. It will come to me.

Tonight: Married Life, featuring Rachel McAdams.

PoF: post-bath warm
CO: sleep is nice