Sunday, February 6, 2005

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the best of what's free

I have slightly more spare time now that I'm done with night school, so I'm using some of it to catch up on movies I've been meaning to see. Screw renting - the local library has them available for a week's free loan. Woo hoo! For more about free stuff, visit your local library!

Aimée and Jaguar
Two women - one a maverick Jewish socialite, one a German officer's wife - start an affair in Berlin towards the end of WWII and end up falling in love. Bittersweet and recommended. People in love do reckless things.

Early Mike Leigh (Vera Drake, Life is Sweet) film. Bleak days in the life of Johnny, who skips out of Manchester and crashes at a friend's place in London. David Thewlis can rant a great streak, I'll tell you that. Brutal and fairly depressing; glad I didn't see it in the theaters, because it fell into my "spending my free time with people I don't like" category of media, and at least at home I could fold my laundry at the same time.

Better Luck Tomorrow
Asian-American high school teens living a double-life: overachieving students and extracurricular joiners during the school day, increasingly dangerous criminals after school gets out. Some great scenes and characters, but I was a bit underwhelmed. It felt like it kept trying to make some great declaration but never quite got around to it. Great scenes of Academic Decathlon meetings, though. Maybe our old Acadec team back in high school would have made nationals if we drank more.

Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India
Bollywood! This movie was Braveheart meets The Bad News Bears set in India. Villagers suffering through a drought end up getting into a challenge cricket match with local British imperial officers. I enjoyed all the ups and downs of the story - love feuds, training montages, loads of songs, and so on. It lasted a bit long for my tiny attention span, though. The best scene-stealer was this guy, Guran the fortune teller:

I want him to stand in the back of all my office meetings and yell "Hail Hanuman! Crack the enemy's back!" every time I say something useful.

Say Your Piece

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