Monday, January 23, 2006

snow day suggestions

MOVIES: Finding Neverland, if you love Peter Pan, Johnny Depp and your imagination. Just a wonderful story and beautiful film.

War of the Worlds, if you'd rather watch a Spielberg sci-fi thriller. And it is good, no matter how crazy Tom Cruise is in real life, the truth is, he can act and he does in this, alongside an always scarily talented Dakota Fanning and really great computer FX.

MUSIC: The Fray, "Over My Head (Cable Car)" It may not be on hot 100 stations yet, or whatever, but if you listen to independent or college radio (which I would highly advise) it's there and it's good. Lyric example:
And suddenly I become a part of your past
I'm becoming the part that don't last
I'm losing you and its effortless

TV: Charles Dicken's Bleak House on PBS. Now, before you laugh at me or get huffy because you think I'm being pretentious by suggesting something presented by public TV and Masterpiece Theatre, this TV mini-series, originally made for the BBC, has everything your mainstream TV series has, and more - a huge controversial court case, death, murder, secrets, love letters, drugs, rich people, poor people, drama, villians, creepy cemeteries, etc. (and that was just in the first two hours). The only thing I can think that it might be missing are terrorists and a deserted island. However, I do hear that later in the series there's spontaneous human combustion.

I happened upon the show last night (as I was listlessly flipping through the 13 TV stations my mom gets) and to be honest, what first drew me in was Gillian Anderson, who plays Lady Dedlock, a rich, bored Victorian woman with a secret past. I hadn't seen Anderson since The X-Files ended, so I thought I'd check it out. Now, I am hooked like its an episode of 24 or LOST. Anderson isn't the main character among the large ensemble cast of British actors, and that doesn't matter because everyone is talented and the story is compelling.

The 8 hour mini-series started last night with a two hour opener and will continue as hour spots for the next 4 Sundays and conclude on the 5th with another two hours. If you want to catch the beginning, I am sure PBS will be re-running it throughout the week. I highly recommend checking it out. As it did for me, it may change your view of period dramas and Masterpiece Theatre.

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