Sunday, June 21, 2009

A rather '20s weekend

This has been a rather 1920s-esque week for me. First, I read Paul Murray's An Evening of Long Goodbyes, which isn't actually set in the '20s. However, the main character seemed to want to live in that era and I honestly had a hard time remembering that the book was set in modern day Ireland. It was interesting in that aspect--Murray did a good job of creating a Roaring '20s feel to his modern work.

I don't think I'd recommend the book to anyone; it was a bit boring in parts and turned oddly serious at the end. Charles, the main character, lives in the old family manor, acting the part of a country gentleman. When he learns his family (just a younger sister and mother away at rehab) has lost all their money, he's forced to leave his home and--gasp--get a job. Throw in some interesting secondary characters and you've got yourself a romp...kind of. Oddly enough, there was a fair amount on immigration in Ireland and all the unrest that's caused. (Glad to see America's not alone in dealing with those issues.) But the ending...ok, here's the thing: part of the ending revolves around a play on words. However, I think the joke only works if you say the words in a British/Irish accent. Whatever; it was a different sort of read...not sure if I'd read it again if I knew what it was going to be like.

Rating: 7/10

So a friend and I went to the movies but our movie had been cancelled. As it was a local theater, they were sooo nice about it and gave us free pass into Easy Virtue instead. Here's my thoughts on that movie set in the '20s:

1. Jessica Biel is a bad actress. I'm a bit prejudiced against her since she's been whining about how hard it is to be beautiful and be taken seriously as an actress. Honey, that's because you're not a good actress. If you were, your beauty would only be an additional aspect (cf. Kate Winslet, Audrey Hepburn, etc.)
2. Colin Firth is wonderful. Too bad he wasn't in the movie that much.
3. The movie was boring and tortuous. Within the first five minutes, both my friend and I knew we had a long road ahead of us.
4. So, at one point, I was joking around about what the ending was going to be. I was kind of serious, but not really. BUT IT HAPPENED EXACTLY HOW I PREDICTED. (If you really want to know, it's this: Jessica Biel's character leaves her wimpy husband for her father-in-law (played by Colin Firth) and yeah, that's the ending. Wow.
5. I just can't get over how much I didn't enjoy this movie.

So there's my roaring weekend for you!

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