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Movie Reviews March - July

I was going to do this every other month and have forgotten. I have a few minutes for short reviews.

16. The Hunger Games

Rewatch with our kids (since they read the book). Excellent acting and adaptation of the book. Jennifer Lawrence IS Katniss. The hand-held camera is a big annoying but adds to the tension of the film. This is a movie AGAINST violence. People just do not get that sometimes.

17. Funny Face

Audrey Hepburn and Fred Astaire. Need I say more? It was so delightful. A woman becomes a model after working in a book shop. Amazing dancing, music, and great fun. S'Marvelous, S'Wonderful!

18, 35. Atlas Shrugged I and II (III is in production)

I think everyone needs to see this trilogy. The acting is somewhat wooden, but it follows the book pretty faithfully. "Who is John Galt?" It is an interesting commentary on capitalism versus socialism. 

19, 22, 23, 26, 27, 32. Doctor Who: Series 3 and 4, The Other Doctor, Planet of the Dead, The Waters of Mars, The End of Time: Part 1 & 2. 

David Tennant rocks. I love these. They are just SO good. The ending is so phenomenal. After a bad day, Doctor Who will always put a smile back on your face.

20. Ayn Rand and the Prophecy of Atlas Shrugged

It really is somewhat scary to see how much of her prophecies have come true. Capitalism is successful. 

21. Quartet

So sweet. Some of our favorite British actors with the wonderful Maggie Smith and Pauline Collins (from the original Upstairs, Downstairs!). The classical music throughout is enchanting. The people in the rest home for retired musicians really are famous retired musicians, and they really are playing the music. Enchanting and good job, Dustin Hoffman, on your directorial debut!


24, 31 The Duchess of Duke Street Series One and Two

This is the mother in the Emma Thompson version of Sense and Sensibility. What a great actress. It is great series based on a true story of a woman who rose up to be the best chef in London and successful manager of her own hotel. 

25. Hope Springs

I was so disappointed in this movie. I thought it would be funny,and it was just pathetic. Meryl Streep should have picked a better script!

28. Evening

I wanted to see something with Claire Danes, and I think it was OK. It was nothing phenomenal though. 

29. You will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger

Wanting to see the Duchess of Duke Street in another role. She is really the only one that is remarkable. Very forgettable movie.

30. Evan Almighty

I was surprised at how much I liked this. Steve Carell is pretty funny, and the movie is pretty clean. 

33, 42 Mad Men Season 5 & 6

This is my father's era of work. My dad was Don Draper without the adultery! He had a similar commanding presence (at 6'8") and slicked back dark hair. It has some racy stuff, but ClearPlay can take care of that. The writing is very good though. 

34. William Faulkner: Famous Author Series

I read my last Faulkner this year (Go Down, Moses), and I wanted to understand him. What a messed up man. It comes out in his writing. Helped me understand him.

36. Call the Midwife: Series 2

I have this on my ROKU, and it is such a better picture than Comcast! HD is fantastic, and these are so beautifully done. I so heartily recommend this series. I almost like it as much as Downton Abbey.

37. Beasts of the Southern Wild

What an interesting look at that part of the world. It was nominated for so many things so I wanted to see what the fuss was about. Very intriguing look at poverty in the south. 

38. Margin Call

The language is strong, but it is about the economic crisis. The acting is very good. Capitalism at its worst.

39. Hamlet

I love all things David Tennant, and I think this is my favorite Hamlet, to date. He is amazing in this role, and the supporting actors are so good!

40,41,44 . Horatio Hornblower: The Duel and The Fire Ships, The Duchess and the Devil

We have wanted our kids to see these for forever so we brought them to the cabin we stayed at in Mount Rainier. This is a rewatch for us, but I think the kids liked them!  We love Ioan! 

43, 49. Doctor Who Series 5 & 6 (still watching)

Matt Smith is a hard act to follow after David Tennant, but we love him just as much. He is more comedic, but SO GOOD. We LOVE Amilia/Amy Pond too! I think she is my favorite companion, to date. She tells us so much with her facial expressions. I love the addition of another male companion in Rory! We are hooked! Love the Special Features on how they make the episodes.

44. Perfect Pitch

I would ClearPlay this because of the language and some of the potty humor, but the music is amazing, and it is funny. Just warning you about the language.

46. Sister Wendy's Story of Painting

I watched this years ago when I was teaching the kids about art. Oh my, she is SO GOOD. I credit her for teaching me to love art. You can get her four series on one DVD set now!

47. Doctor Who: Christmas Carol

I have to give this one its own entry because it is so good. It made me sob. Katherine Jenkins steals the show in this moving adaptation of this classic. I am tempted to buy it. 

48. What to Expect When You're Expecting

I just put it on since it was free on my Amazon Prime trial. I wanted something to watch while working in my room. It was OK. The disadvantage of Amazon Prime is that I cannot ClearPlay out the language!

49. Watership Down

My book club read this, and I usually try to do a comparison with the movie version. It is animated, and it follows the book pretty faithfully, leaving out much at the end for time. I wasn't very exciting, but I also got a bit bored with the book toward the end too. 
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One of Laubach's most important suggestions in this terrific little book is that we pray during the "chinks" that happen in all of our schedules: while stuck in traffic, doing mindless chores, standing in lines, and so on. …

1. The Game with Minutes by Frank C. Laubach

This is really more a short essay, but it is profound and important. It is one of the best things I have ever read and applying it will change your life. 

This is a reread for me as I have paired it with my reading of Letters by a Modern Mysticby Laubach in the past, but it is good all on its own, and we have our Kingdom training groups read it every time we do this curriculum, and people usually really like it! We pair it with reading The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence which I have read on a regular basis over the last 35 years. Laubach was like a modern day Brother Lawrence, but practicing God's presence in the midst of real life rather than in a monastery. 

Here is a PDF download:  of "The Game with Minutes"
(the link I had before was not the whole thing)

Here is also a PDF of Letters by a Modern Mystic:

http://www.dunedin.elim.org.nz/uploads/1/2/7/8/12786940/frank_laubach_-_letters_by_a_modern_mystic.pdf

Here is a helpful summary of it by Dallas Willar…