Monday, 1 October 2007

Weekend Viewage

Why hello, I hope you had a good weekend. Mine was spent in Fulham, mostly watching things on screens of varying proportions and being extremely lazy.

Me and him scooted off to the cinema on Saturday evening and found ourselves walking the wrong way down a road full of Chelsea supporters on their way back from les football. We played 'Guess whether they won or lost' which was quite hard because they weren't the most facially expressive fans I've ever seen, we guessed they'd won as there was a distinct lack of crying / suicide / bottle throwing, however feel free to put me right if I'm wrong.

So off we went to see Atonement in a wonderfully quiet 5pm showing, where the nearest popcorn eater was a grenade throw away and we had our pick of the best seats. Usually I love to slag off a cinema experience, but in this case it was great. The film is, by all accounts, one of the best adaptations I've seen in a long time. Add the fact that I successfully prevented the boyfriend from buying popcorn / nachos and it makes for a very nice way to spend a couple of hours. I first read Atonement about 4 or 5 years ago and thought it a distinctly average book. Then I read it again for my course in 3rd year, discovered the bits I'd glossed over, realised the point which I had missed entirely and it became one of my favourite books. I liked it so much I wrote an essay on it, caught up on the rest of Ian McEwan's novels (including Amsterdam, but the less said about that the better) and tucked it onto my bookshelf alongside Enduring Love and The Line of Beauty. And then I discovered they were making a film with (oh no) Keira 'I'm a bountay hunter' Knightley and I hoped to god they weren't about to make an epically proportioned big-screen hash of it. Thankfully, it reaffirmed to me why I love British films and restored my faith in film adaptations which has been waning of late given the big style blockbusters that often oversimplify and change the plot completely etc etc. I won't go on, there's a million and one reviews you can read all singing it's go and see Atonement. And read the book, too.

On Sunday, Sky Movies was showing Brokeback Mountain which I never got round to seeing and neither had the boyfriend (2 and a half hours of man love in a cinema always seemed a bit too close for comfort). So we plumped down in front of the telly for an afternoon of man on man action and, well, as it turned out, a lot of non-sex related mumbling. Now I'm all for authenticity when it comes to recreating the "American West" cowboy drawl, but I also rather like hearing what the actors are saying. Unfortunately for me, Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger seemed unable to open their mouths properly to speak which left me and the boyfriend continually piping up with variations on the following: "Eh?" "What did he say?" "Don't know."A few minutes later. "What was that?" "Not sure. Something about sheep." "Oh...........Eh?". Speech impediments aside, I enjoyed it and can see why everyone was harping on about it. Saying that, it's not one I'm adding to my 'Ooh, must watch again' list. I also won't be settling down to watch it with the 'rents.

I also watched another film on Saturday, but it was rubbish and made me annoyed, therefore warranting a post of it's own. So you can look forward to me returning to full ranting angry form soon-ish. In the meantime, if someone could recommend me a good book (non chick lit, non hugely obscure) that'd be useful as I'm currently suffering through a book by Marian Keyes and to be honest, I can feel my brain disintegrating from touch alone. Ta muchly.


James said...

I think I'm right in saying that Chelsea drew 0-0 at the weekend, which might explain why you found it hard to decide whether they had won or lost, as they did neither.

I was about to recommend a book called 'Saturday' which I enjoyed not too long ago, but then I just realised it was by Ian McEwan wasn't it. Ooops... haven't been reading much fiction lately, I'm afraid. 'This book will save your life' was the last fiction book I read which was pretty good.

As a final point with the whole mumbling speech thing. With films/dramas where they speak really fast, mumble a lot or have strong accents and if I'm feeling a little knackered I sometimes stick the subtitles on. It sounds very strange but it stops you completely missing bits of what is said.

London-Lass said...

The Chelsea supporters were probably unreadable since I understand the vast majority are still in a state of shock following the departure of `The Special One'. In actual fact, according to BBC News on Saturday, a goodly amount left at half-time as some sort of protest about the whole thing, because, apparently, `there is only one José'.

I hear what you say about Brokeback Mountain and the mumbling. It reminded me of when Marlon Brando and/or James Dean would sometimes end up mumbling their way through a script ... My viewing of this film was even more interesting, however, as I watched it at the cinema and ended up getting caught up in the excitement of a few couples leaving with disgusted expressions on their faces. Cue big fat grin on London-Lass' face not only at their idiocy (I mean, come on, did they really not know what the film might contain?!) but also due to the fact that their departure made for an even quieter cinematic experience - which is always good.

As for a book I would recommend - well I loved 'Confessions of a Chatroom Freak by Mr Biffo' - it's not exactly `high brow' but (I thought) pretty funny nonetheless.

Ella Rice said...

The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets by Eva Rice (you can probly tell it's my favourite book) or The Girls Guide to Hunting and Fishing by Melissa Bank or The Jane Austen Book Club. All of those are non- chic lit.

I too have been mourning the loss of the special one. Am i really the only girl who thinks mourhino is hotty McTottie?

the boy who likes to... said...

Just to confirm most have said, the Chelsea Fulham score was nil nil.
The disillusioned look on the Chelsea fans faces may of been due to many things.
Like What the frickin frick is Kalou playing at?Has he ever seen what the goal posts look like?
When is Schevchenko going to be put to pasture?
Why Grant? Why? (I'm all up for giving managers the time to do what they have to do, but I just have a feeling that we are going to do bad under new managament)
And wasn't this supposed to be the year that Arsenal struggled?
Its alot to take in for Chelsea fans at the moment.

kittenpower said...

I just watched Brokeback for the first time and I cried and cried at the end of it! I'm so glad you got to see it! I couldn't understand a lot of what they said either... But maybe we weren't supposed to-it just didn't matter what they were saying, but more what they were doing? No se.
I agree. I'm glad I saw the movie, but I don't know that I need to see it again.

Thanks for stopping by the other day :)

Miss Understood said...

I quite often watch movies with the subtitles on! I enjoyed Brokeback, and yes...I cried at the end too. What a wuss.

As for a good book... anything by Tony Parsons.

Hannah said...

Atonement IS good, isn't it? I was very pleasantly surprised. And, like you, I thought the book was average, although that was some years ago, so I shall go back and re-read (on which note, I didn't rate Enduring Love, but I do like his later stuff: try Saturday and On Chesil Beach).

And ah, Brokeback. I don't think I'd be able to watch it again, but purely for the fact that it's so tragic I was bawling like a baby. Just fantastic.

Lionel Shriver's We Need to Talk About Kevin is pretty good if you've not read it yet (caveat: if you think you might ever want kids, then steer clear). That's my only recommendation at the moment, as sadly I'm stuck into academic readings at the moment, and as great as Aslan is on the Middle East, it's not bedtime stuff.

Jo said...

James - yeaaah I've read Saturday, tis rather good. And good call on the subtitles, next time I watch a gay cowboy film I'll stick 'em on.

londonlass - I've never left a film half way through and don't understand people who do. It wasn't that graphic, after all.

Ella - Merci for the recommendations, funnily enough I just looked next to my bed and there's a copy of 'The Jane Austen Book Club' which I haven't read, I'll give it a try.

The boy - don't darken my comments page with football talk! You're treading a fine line sonnny!!

kitten power - Glad I wasn't the only one who had difficulty working out what they were saying!

Miss understood - there was no chance of me crying, what with my boyfriend ad-libbing to the script with the odd 'he wants it in his bum' comment every now and then. Took the emotional edge off it.

Hannah - I'll try On Chesil Beach, haven't got round to reading that yet. I love Atonement, completely missed the clever bit first time round...

Thanks for the book reco's everyone, i shall take your advice.


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