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Moneyball (viewed as part of AMC’s Best Picture Showcase 18 February 2012)
Part of the first day of AMC Theaters’ Best Picture Showcase. It was all right, but I don’t particularly care about Brad Pitt or the Oakland As (or baseball at all, for that matter), so it didn’t blow me away or anything. Based on a true story, for what that’s worth. Sister taught me about tasks (something an actor does so that his or her character seems more human/relatable/realistic/credible) and then expressed her frustration with Pitt because all his characters seem to have the same one: eating. I didn’t notice until she pointed it out, but yeah.

War Horse (viewed as part of AMC’s Best Picture Showcase 18 February 2012)
Saw this as part of AMC’s BPS (first day of two) with my sister. Decent film. Epic panning cinematography and depictions of war, as one expects from Steven Spielberg. Il liked the boy’s mother the best, I think, and her statement to her husband when asks if she’ll leave him if he loses the farm: “I may hate y’more, but I’ll never love ye less.” It was nominated for an Academy Award, after all, but I mean… it’s about horse, soo…

17 Again (viewed at home 2 February 2012)
Stupid movie with an unoriginal plot, but one I’d probably watch again if I didn’t want to think too much. Perfect for my mom because—although she’s not stupid—she dislikes violence and movie sex and likes happy endings. Corny through and through. The kid dresses as “K-Fed” and subsequently (of course) gets made fun of, so the next day he shows up dressed as… Tom Cruise. I’m not kidding. Also, the puns. OMFG. I thought it was cute that he kept forgetting he was 17 again, though. Yeah, I’d probably watch it again, even if it was just to show it to my mom. Such a dumb movie, though. Uuuuuugh.

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (viewed in theaters 29 January 2012)
I chose this film because it was nominated for an Oscar for Best Actor (among other nominations) but then realized that it also has in it one of the actors I follow. (Yes, I follow some actors’ careers, okay? Don’t judge me.) Went to see it with Bobby, and it was okay, but it wasn’t what I was expecting (I don’t know what I was expecting), and I don’t think it really turned out to be my cup of tea. I mean, it’s a war movie, but with no actual war. (That’s the Cold War for you, I guess.) It’s set in the ’70s, so while I understand the rampant sexism, I still didn’t like it. I did like the hush-hush insider names for everything, though: Control, Circus, etc.

the Alice stories (read 17-25 January 2012)
And by that I mean Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, which I finally made the point of reading myself after having seen quite a few TV and movie adaptations of said. Here’s the thing. It really pissed me off that in every single adaptation I’ve ever seen the Queen of Hearts and the Red Queen are combined into one character, so I thought that reading the original stories would help deflate some of that anger. Unfortunately, it only made the anger righteous instead of tamed, so. Really, though, I would honest-to-gods love to see just one screen version of the Alice stories that doesn’t conflate the two. They’re not even from the same game! Grr argh /knashing of teeth.

Viannah E. Duncan

Viannah E. Duncan is a writer and activist hailing originally from Los Angeles. She lives outside of Baltimore, Maryland, and holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Wilkes University. She has a cat, Cleo.

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