Saturday, December 29, 2012

Last Randomday of 2012, with movie reviews

Christmas break is never long enough.  We all know it, I'm just going to say it now for the record.

I bought a clearance-priced replica of the Colosseum for my aquarium.  This was while Quarta was spending her Christmas money on a hamster habitat at the pet store.  Tertia has an irrational fear of animals, and they share a room.  This should be interesting.

Steve and I are not doing very well at doing our Sunday School Greek class homework ahead of time.  We have a date this evening to do that.

Holiday movie reviews:
The Hobbit:  Only Peter Jackson could take a gentle, erudite children's bedtime storybook and turn it(just the first third of it, mind) into a boisterous, 3-hour-long extravaganza that sets new standards for movie technology, and still make it something that almost the whole family will love to watch.  Don't expect it to match the ethereal beauty or artistic cohesiveness of The Lord of the Rings, but take your kids if they are, say, 8 or older and have read it or had it read to them.  (I'm schoolmarmish about reading first.)  Our kids were 10 and up and did fine, even Tertia who gets scared by loud noises.  There's lots to enjoy throughout, and even the intense action sequences have their lighthearted moments.  Well, some of them... I liked the ladder sequence in Goblintown.  The Pale Orc and the Wargs are just freakishly scary.  Lots of nice tie-ins with LOTR, and I very much look forward to seeing future installments.

Les Miserables: LOVED it! I was fortunate enough to see the musical twice; once on Broadway in 1989, once in Washington D.C. on tour.  It has been my favorite musical ever since, and it's wonderful that it has been adapted so well for the big screen.  The songs are not dubbed in afterwards from the comfort of a sound booth; the actors sing in real time, capturing some very raw emotions indeed.  Definitely respect the PG-13 rating on this, please; prostitution, cruelty and desperate poverty make this inappropriate for children.  The Hollywood actors do their bit to make sure a wider audience will enjoy Victor Hugo's tale of grace vs. works, but I have to say my favorite part was Colm Wilkinson (original Valjean) cast as the Bishop with the candlesticks.  I hadn't researched it beforehand; it was his distinctive voice that gave it away.  Wouldn't it be wonderful if America regained an appreciation of the art of telling stories with music because of this movie?  I think it would.

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