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The Reader – A Film Reflection

“The Reader” – A Film Reflection

I have been haunted by my memories of “The Reader” since viewing it recently. There is very good reason that Kate Winslet ran away with a 2009 Academy Award for her role as Hanna Schmitz, a woman harboring a secret Nazi past while conducting a summer love affair with a fifteen-year-old boy. Winslet is enthralling in this role. While on the surface, one could condemn Schmitz’s actions, there are too many layers in this emotional human drama to make it merely black and white.

David Kross plays the young man with almost equal agility as Winslet; his character, Michael Berg, never really has the chance to peel those layers away. Flashbacks with the incomparable Ralph Fiennes as the adult Michael, show that he has struggled throughout his lifetime with how his summer tryst defined him, with no clear resolution, as Hanna simply vanished at summer’s end.

Water plays a big role in this film. It is storming on the first day the boy meets the woman, as he cowers, retching from an oncoming bout with Scarlet Fever, in the alcove of her building. She comes to his aid, washing his vomit from the ground with a pail of water. Several weeks later when his illness has ebbed, he brings her a bouquet to thank her for her help. She tells him to fetch some coal for her in the basement; when he returns, covered in coal dust, she runs him a bath. Their affair has now been set inextricably in motion.

He is a bright young man who gains confidence from his dalliance with the woman. One does not think of him as “under age” except during a two-day bicycle excursion on which he has convinced her to join him, when the two of them order lunch. In the naked light of the day, it seems to their waitress that they are mother and son. When she comments as he is paying that “I hope your mother enjoyed her meal,” he says “Yes, very much” (out of earshot of Hanna). Then he goes to Hanna and kisses her on the lips.

Perhaps Hanna would have sent Michael away after their first sexual encounter, but once he starts reading to her, she is addicted. He has no idea she does not know how to read, or much else about her for that matter. It is when he begins to study law, years after the summer affair, when sitting in on a trial, that he discovers the truth about Hanna.

Where it would take the typical actor 20 minutes of soliloquy, Winslet and Fiennes can each portray thoughts and feelings in a gesture or facial expression. Also, the make-up people on this film are to be commended for aging them so impeccably, as the story begins in 1958 and finishes in 1995. A haunting glimpse into the the psyches of two people in post-war Germany, that makes “Summer of ’42” seem flippant in comparison.

Fiennes, Winslet and Kross work wonderfully together.…

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Clash of the Titans Gets a C+

Clash of the Titans Gets a C+

I was under the impression that the only reason someone would re-make a movie or story line that had been made previously was because they felt as if they could improve upon what had been done before. So, when I heard about a re-telling of Clash of the Titans, I assumed that they were going to put a new spin on it and try to improve upon the thirty year old classic. I mean, given all that they can do now-a-days in visual effects, the idea of an incredibly realistic Medusa and Kraken is exciting and should be awesome, right???

I am a huge fan of the original Clash of the Titans. It might be because of my age at the time it came out, 6, and the fact that it really was a great film to spark the imagination of a kid. Also, the visual effects at the time were quite effective and it showed Ray Harryhausen’s work at its best. When I heard a retelling of this classic was in the works, I thought that this was one story that could use a nice upgrade. Granted, the cast was pretty top-notch, and the effects were cool for its time, but it was going to be interesting to see the Greek mythological world updated with today visual effects. Now that I have seen it, I can say that while it was entertaining enough and had some cool scenes, the film overall paled in comparison with the original and had a climax that was less than satisfying.

I’m sure most of you know the basic story is about Perseus, the mortal son of Zeus, who denies his birthright of becoming a god himself to live among the mortals. He is raised by a fisherman and his family and who raises him as their own. The family is then killed by Hades as a war erupts between the gods and humanity. Perseus then seeks vengeance for the death of his family and goes on a quest to defeat the Kraken, Hades’ pet monster, and in turn overthrow Hades’ attempt to overtake Zeus as the supreme god of them all. Granted, this is fairly different from the original story line as Hades was not in the movie what so ever and Perseus wanted to defeat the Kraken in order to save his love Andromeda.

One thing that I did like more about this film is that the story of the gods themselves is told including the back story of Io, Medusa, Poseidon, Zeus and Hades. They also do a very good job of building up to the climactic battle with the Kraken. The big problem I had with the film is the fact that they build up to the final battle goes on for a good hour and forty five minutes, then when the Kraken appears on the screen, the battle lasts all of five minutes. Why have such a build up to the end of the movie only to make it shorter than other sequences in the film? Also, why even have Hades in this version but not have he and Zeus battle it out with one another?

All in all, I would recommend this film to anyone that enjoyed the original. In fact, some people may even like this one more. I however have very fond memories of the original and this version did nothing to overtake the first film in my heart. I did not see the 3D version as I heard a great many complaints about how terrible the conversion was. How about you guys? Anyone out there see it in 3D? What did you think? Let me know!!

C+…

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Robot Movie

Robot Movie

Robot (Hindi film) is promising its audience that it is a different movie. Robot has already come in Tamil and has had good success (it goes by the name Endhiran in Tamil). The graphics used in Robot will be liked by many Indians. With Rajni in the film the graphics of Robot will look much flashy as the stunts will be done by the master of style.

With the style of Rajnikant and the hot and sizzling Ash the movie looks much promising after getting the added benefit of having a wonderful music composer: A.R. Rahman. If you are a music lover go around and search for some Robot music and give the taste of music paradise to your ears.

There is still a lot more to add to the bells and whistles of Robot. The movie has a few stunt directors and also animation experts who have worked with great Hollywood movies like Avataar and King Kong. With style superking Rajni as a robot the movie is definitely going to be a super hit.

Aishwarya is said to have designed the wardrobe herself for Robot. This time Ash is giving much attention to the clothing stuff for Robot and is making sure that she gets the right set of clothes to set the audience of Robot on fire with her hot gesture

The only problem might be the body language. If you think so you are wrong: both the lead actors of Robot are professional actors and have not had to fight with much body language issues.

Another reason why people are so excited about this movie is the stunts part of it. There will be unimaginable stunts in Robot with the South Indian superstar Rajni running all around the silver screen. Like it or not but Robot has got everything in it to become a superstar. You may also like to sneak into Robot movie review. Do take a look at the song Mohenjodaro from Robot, people are loving it!…

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Avatar the Movie – What is Its Message?

Avatar the Movie – What is Its Message?

Avatar was an incredible fantasy about an amazing reality. I saw the movie Avatar last night. I had heard so many things about it, from many people. But when I saw it, it was amazingly different than I had imagined. The reason for that I believe is that the message in the movie was so subtle, it allowed each one of us to interpret it depending on where we are on our journey of evolution.

The movie is spiritual. It is a thriller. It is an action movie, a violent movie and it is a fairy tale. And it is ingenious and magnificent.

The elements of the movie were basically formula. We had the down-trodden( the Na’vis), we had heroes ( the Avatars), the villain ( the US army) and a tender love story. The obvious truth about it is the greed and lack of concern for human life and the sacredness of all life in the Universe, that we exhibit on our planet. That was portrayed too well for my liking.

This movie is about the connectedness of all life. The scientists know today that we are all part of an energy force that exists everywhere all the time. The vibrating molecules that make up the earth and the Universe are all part of what some people call God. The Na’vis called their Deity Eywa. It seems that entities of Pandora are much more connected to and aware of their spiritual connection.

The people on our earth, however, are continually in lack and limitation and in order for them to feel secure and happy, they must have more of everything. That translates into money. Money was represented in the form of a valuable rock, which lay beneath the civilization of Na’vis, in the roots of a gigantic tree. This Hometree was physically connected to everything on their moon through a network like the electric network of our brain.

Today, scientists and quantum physicians, believe that we are all connected through our energy molecules. Everything on our planet is part of these molecules including our intelligence. So why are we willing to destroy to attain something that we already possess? What part of our human psych will not allow us to know the real truth of our being?

The moral of the story was that good always prevails. The energy of good is always more powerful than the energy of bad. If we thought better of ourselves, we would always be in the energy of good. In the energy of good, we would know that our earth provides abundance for all.…

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Two Surprising Things That Can Impact Your Abundance

Two Surprising Things That Can Impact Your Abundance

As you focus on attracting greater abundance into your life, you may be working on the more obvious aspects like visualizing, reciting affirmations and staying open to abundance – but there are other things that can have a direct effect on your level of abundance.

Below are two of those things that may surprise you:

Emotional Balance

More often than not, the things that cause us the most pain are not the situations and experiences of our lives, but our reactions to them. In our attempt to fight against, struggle with, and overcome our problems, we end up exacerbating them! Rather than fighting against our problems, we can use the Law of Attraction to rise above them and shift smoothly and easily into better circumstances.

Are you currently struggling with a situation or condition that is causing you pain and suffering? Decide right now that you are going to release it and rise above it mentally and emotionally. Rather than trying to fix the situation or force things to go the way you want, simply turn your thoughts to a better condition and imagine that it already exists.

Imagine that you can attune to it simply by dropping the struggle and adjusting your focus. Then watch in awe as seemingly insurmountable obstacles are dissolved and the path before you becomes clear again.

Self-Respect

Self-respect is important when it comes to your ability to attract greater abundance into your life. Have you ever allowed someone to take advantage of you? Do you often acquiesce to the demands of others even though they conflict with your own preferences? Are you asking for abundance and then acting in ways that tell the universe you don’t believe you deserve it?

Developing a strong sense of self-respect can trigger some surprising and welcome changes in your life – especially when it comes to expressions of abundance. When you refuse to accept mistreatment from others; refuse to settle for less than you deserve; and believe in your own value and worthiness, the universe will deliver experiences that mesh with your inner perception.

This can include more money, meaningful relationships, better health, and much more.…

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Are You Experiencing Roofing Problems? Read Here!

Homeowners know that maintaining a healthy roof is an important priority. Many homeowners do not understand what they need Home Home Home to do to maintain their roofs. By following the advice here, anyone has the ability to make their roof last longer.

If a leak pops up during a storm, don’t do anything until the rain stops and you have a chance to look at the problem. There is no quick fix and it’s dangerous. Once the roof has dried, you can set about making repairs.

Do not put off replacing your shingles. Although you may believe that it is okay to procrastinate on this for a little while, doing so can cause worse damage in the future. By immediately replacing your shingles, you can save a lot of money and problems in the future. If you take care of your roof, it will take care of you.

Make sure to wear rubber boots if you ever need to get on your roof. Regardless of the weather, rubber-soled shoes are a necessity for keeping your footing on the roof. Do not put yourself in dangerous positions when on the roof.

Mow the lawn prior to the removal of your old roof. This will make it easier to find any nails that fall from the roof. If the contractor uses a magnetized nail finder, cut grass can also help.

Be sure to ask many questions of your roofer before hiring him. Ask about the number of nails that will be used for each shingle. If it is three or fewer, that is a bad sign. Ask them about the methods they use, and see if they give a good answer. If not, then find a better contractor option.

Talk to any homeowner, and they’ll probably tell you how important it is to keep your roof in good shape. Unfortunately, not everyone knows how to deal with roofing issues. Fortunately, you have some helpful information at your fingertips.…

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Help Kids Manage Movie Collection Problems

Help Kids Manage Movie Collection Problems

You’re not the only one with movie collection issues. If you have children who like movies as much as you do, you need to give them the tools they need to organize on their own. While you could help them manage DVD collection problems, what will they learn if you do all the work for them? Instead, you can give them easy to use tools that will allow them to figure out how to manage movie collection issues when they come up and they might even be able to apply these lessons to larger organization concerns down the road.

The Younger Kids

It’s true, those children who are younger may not understand what a movie organization problem is. You need to start them a little simpler in this process, while still teaching them how to help you with your organization. Because they’ll have some understanding, they will be able to manage movie collection problems, even at their age. Have these children take a box and always put their movies back into the box when they’re done. This will help them understand how to stay neat and clean, and then you can see where the movies are at all times. You might also want to talk with them about only having enough movies to fit into that box. When the box is too full, the children need to decide which ones need to be donated or thrown away.

Older Children

When a child is older, they’ll be able to understand organization better. To manage movie collection problems at this age, have the children clean up after themselves, but then also arrange the movies by title. This will help them understand that movies need to go in a certain order so as to be easy to find later. You can also begin to introduce them to movie collection software that can help them keep things under control. Show them how you use the software and then have them help you when you are updating the movie collection lists. Those who are more adept with the computer might be able to use the system on their own too.

Teens

Software to manage DVD collection problems will be easy for teens to use. All they need to do is to read the instructions and they can manage the work on their own. You might want to make this a special role in your household and turn over the organization to a responsible teen. This will help them learn about organizational skills, plus it can help them continue to learn how to help the family as a whole. They can also find new ways of using the software so that it works better for the family’s needs.

To manage movie collection problems, all you need is to enlist the help of your children. This will allow you to create a clutter-free home as well as a movie collection that works for your family needs. Organization is simple when everyone is able to get involved.…

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Reviewed: Good Neighbours [2011]

Reviewed: Good Neighbours [2011]

N/A – 95mins – Comedy/Crime/Thriller – N/A

Good Neighbours follows three people who live in the same apartment building in Montreal over the course of Winter in 1995. Spencer (Scott Speedman) is a wheelchair bound introvert who spends all of his time in his flat on the first floor; Victor (Jay Baruchel) who has recently moved to the area since returning from China; and finally Louise (Emily Hampshire), a waitress at a local restaurant who spends most of her time either socialising with her pet cats (Tia Maria and Mozart) or reading up on the local serial killer who is running riot near to where they live.

Each of them is flawed in their own unique way so much so that I found myself asking the question why are any of them friends at all? Only the nervous Victor seems to be capable of something resembling social skills despite the uncanny ability to put his foot in everything time and time again and yet on several occasions they all sit down to dinner together when it’s extremely obvious that they would be somewhere else.

The film took such a long time to get going and was so slow paced to begin with that I began to lose interest rather quickly. And although it did begin to pick up just past the hour mark I was only kept partially intrigued to see how the characters were going to play out once they had each laid their cards on the table. The acting was average, nothing shockingly bad but nothing exceptional either, with Hampshire the best of the bunch in her portrayal of the disturbingly cat obsessed Louise.

The most shocking moment in the film for me came after I finished watching it and realised that this was supposed to be part comedy albeit black humour. That small titbit of information only made itself obvious to me after I started to research it which gives you some indication of how funny I felt Good Neighbours to be. If that cryptic message was too much for you let me spell it out- it wasn’t funny… not in the slightest. Black comedies do tend to be more subjective than other comedies but I’m normally a fan quick to laugh at the disturbing and down right wrong. So (except for one line I’ve just remembered after some strenuous thinking) I had on my poker face.

Whoever made the trailer for this should be out of a job. Is a spoiler considered to be a spoiler if it’s included in the trailer? If you’re ever planning to watch this then I recommend giving the trailer a miss as it destroys what little intrigue there is supposed to be for one of the years most obvious and predictable plots. I’m usually quite good at seeing where a film is going but for Good Neighbours even if you’ve only got your head half screwed on I doubt the twists and turns will remain hidden from you for long.

I have the feeling that if you are able to get into this film near the beginning then there is a reasonable chance that enjoyment is there to be had but I found it so hard to do this that a potentially decent storyline has gone to waste and a sense of disappointment surrounded me once the film had finished. Not watching the trailer might also make for slightly better viewing. If you see it on the TV one day then maybe you should watch it.…

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Tangled in Your Dreams

Tangled in Your Dreams

Judging form the preview of the Disney movie Tangled, I wasn’t expecting much. Boy was I wrong. This movie was clever, funny, had an emotionally engaging story and delivered some very powerful messages through metaphor and song. The female lead was not waiting around to be rescued and Prince Charming did not have a respectable background. This is the Disney we’ve been missing since Aladdin and Beauty and the Beast. If you haven’t seen it yet, you may not want to read any further.

For starters, Rapunzel’s tower serves as her prison. She is about to turn 18 and has never felt grass under her feet or experienced the outside world. Her “mother” knows best and tells her the world is dangerous and harmful. The tower represents whatever little world you may currently live in (i.e. your family, your job, your town). We all cut ourselves off from possibilities every day because we choose to stay in the comfort of what’s familiar.

Tired of feeling trapped, Rapunzel’s curiosity leads to seizing an opportunity to escape for three days without her mother knowing. She takes a risk and goes against everything she’s been brought up to believe in because she has a dream.

When she gets out the tower, she experiences a roller coaster of emotions from ecstasy and joy to regret and sorrow. She is truly torn between moving forward and going back. Despite these strong emotions, she decides to forge ahead.

As obstacles surface, she turns rough and ugly characters into friends by explaining her quest and asking “didn’t you ever have a dream?” The best song in the movie is “I’ve Got a Dream,” which features the hidden talents of the most charming minor characters in the film. By sharing her dream, she helps others get back in touch with theirs.

Finally, as she’s about to get what’s she’s wanted for so long, she admits to being terrified. She asks what if it’s not everything she’s dreamed it would be? That is, when you’ve been aspiring toward something for so long and you achieve it at last, what do you do next? The male lead answers by saying you just choose another dream.

There is no shortage of dreams in the world. You can probably think of 5-10 dreams off the top of your head that you’ve had since childhood. You simply keep dreaming up new dreams in a never-ending cycle of dream fulfillment.

To make your dreams come true, you’ve got to be willing to take action. You’ve got to believe in the dream and be more committed to it than to your current reality. Don’t let fear paralyze you from taking steps toward your dream. That’s just ego trying to hold onto the status quo. There is no such thing as a neutral place. Your beliefs are always either moving you forward or holding you back.

Don’t miss this movie. I cried several times and so did my 12 year old daughter. A grown man sitting two rows in front of us laughed louder than anyone else in the theater. The scenes with Maximus the horse and the chameleon are priceless. This movie is about dreams and having the courage to go after them. It’s a wonderful message for children and adults.…

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Read This Article if You Despise Religion

Read This Article if You Despise Religion

First, before I start realize that religion is only a concept. Therefore, if you despise a religion, you may as well despise Harry Potter’s latest novel, or Hollywood’s latest movie. Do you see that point? Now you might despise folks of a certain religion who have adopted a way of life or believe in something to the point that they have impeded upon your rights, as you see them. Just despising a religion is kind of silly, and may I ask who gave you the right to choose other people’s thoughts – what are you now; the thought police, a one-person Don Quixote windmill attacker, and if so, may I ask to what avail? Let’s talk about this for second shall we?

First, an FYI; I am not a follower of any religion, even at age 3 this whole theory of Santa Claus didn’t make any sense to me, and I question all the stories, tales, myths, and religious works regardless of denomination, and I find them all fascinating, and an integral part of human history and the human endeavor, but I certainly don’t want them for my own life experience, but to despise any of these concepts is not an intellectual thought, and perhaps it is the wrong tact altogether. If you recognize religions as culture, the glue of society, and/or a control mechanism then more power to you, at least you are observing what you see in the real world.

Are religions necessary for human civilization? Probably not. Are they a net negative or net positive? It’s hard to say, they’ve been around so long, we hardly would know what would be if they didn’t exist, things would be much different, so who is really to say? There’s no real empirical evidence one way or the other, and even if you took a supercomputer and looked at every civilization that has ever risen and fallen in the history of humanity, you probably couldn’t get a definite answer. You might find one religion which has done better than others for the society, depending on the culture, region, and many other factors, but you could never come to a foregone conclusion.

To assume that you could would be laughable, erroneous, and in itself a “hardened opinion” akin to a religion itself. Now then, it probably goes without saying that if a bunch of humans made up the story about a God or gods, chances are it isn’t true, the odds are so against that potential eventuality, it’s probably not even worth discussing, but that doesn’t mean you should despise the concept. In actuality you should be intrigued by it. Indeed I hope you will please consider all this and think on it.…