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Captain Phillips (viewed in theaters 20 October 2013)
Grandma’s choice for family night. I was seasick almost the entire time and for the rest of the night. Turned out that nearly all of us were seasick, and my grandmother blamed it on the theater even though (1) none of us had ever had that trouble at that theater before, and (2) she was the one who picked the movie. Basically, I came away from the film sick to my stomach and completely unimpressed with my grandmother’s lack of ability to take any responsibility for herself and her own actions. =_=

Pacific Rim (viewed in theaters 22 September 2013)
Took my sister and father to see this film in the cheap theater at the insistence of the tumblr community haha. (I’m not actually kidding.) It was basically a standard science fiction large monsters movie with two primary exceptions. First, there were characters of color in prominent position in the cast and plot. Second, the film had a really good lead woman… a lead woman whom the lead man respected from the very beginning. It didn’t pass the Bechdel Test, but it inspired an entirely new kind of “does your film have ‘strong women’ in it?” test: the Mako Mori Test.

The Three Lives of Thomasina (watched at home 11 August 2013)
Grandma’s choice for family night. It used two separate orange cats for Thomasina, and honestly? Eh. I wouldn’t have picked it. The plot was lacking, the best character was the cat’s owner’s father, and he wasn’t in the film nearly enough for my tastes. Eh, it was okay. It wasn’t terrible. It wasn’t that good. It was just… eh.

Much Ado About Nothing (watched in theaters 21 June 2013)
Viewed in theaters with family; my choice family night. Honestly, I chose the film because, really, who doesn’t like Amy Acker and Alexis Denisof? It’s Shakespeare, so my grandmother couldn’t really complain. I think the director, Joss Whedon, did what he could to mitigate the original play’s inherent sexism, but one can only do so much without actually changing that many of the lines, etc. It was good, and I’d watch it again, but I probably wouldn’t buy it for my personal collection. (That being said, I probably wouldn’t by any films of Shakespearean plays for myself, except possibly The Merchant of Venice.) Not sure my grandma really understood any of it, though, even though it was acceptable because it was Shakespeare and anything by Shakespeare is acceptable by default.

Supernatural, season 8 (watched at home June 2013)
Okay, so I’ve seen all of Supernatural that there is to see up to this point (mid-June 2013). I fell in love with the brothers’ relationship at the very beginning, and I haven’t been disappointed even once through all 172 episodes (eight seasons) that have been broadcast. I want a bond so close and so deep that I would do anything for the other person, and that person would do anything for me. There were in season 8, of course, a couple dud episodes, but that’s to be expected with a series that’s gone on as long as this series has. The screen writing is terrific; the actors are phenomenal. I am most definitely adding the box sets to my collection when I get the chance. As predicted, Supernatural is absolutely in my top five favorite American TV shows of all time.

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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