Saturday, January 4, 2014

Fine Films

These days I find there are an appalling number of bad movies just waiting to steal two hours from my life. Don't you feel the same way? I could easily go on a horsemen-of-the-apocalypse/fall-of-the-Roman-Empire tirade about what that means for our culture, but I'll spare you.

In the past month, however, I've seen a handful of fine films, and I want to tell you about them in hopes that you'll watch them, love them, and talk to me about them the next time I see you* so we can get riled up about how a good movie at the end of a long week is like the sprinkles on an ice cream cone. 

A classic I never saw until last month, while the wee one napped and I wrapped presents. Meryl Streep and Jack Nicholson star in this adaptation of Nora Ephron's ripped-from-the-headlines-of-her-own-life novel. I got The Most of Nora Ephron for Christmas and I'm loving every page of it. What a woman. Available to stream on Netflix.

Parker Posey and a French guy with eyes like saucers. New York and Paris. Neurotic love. I watched this late at night while (still) wrapping presents, and it was perfect. When it was over, I wanted to play it again. Too bad it was 2am. Available to stream on Netflix.

Charlotte Gainsbourg. Listening to French people speak French. A romantic comedy in the truest sense: funny, tender, and slightly surreal. Available to stream on Netflix.

The Best Offer
This is a new movie but we watched it from the comfort of our couch while the snow fell. Geoffrey Rush stars as a fine art auctioneer on the scale of Christie's. The world this movie depicts is captivating: gorgeous white penthouse apartments and dilapidated grand villas filled with works from old masters. Just to watch it is a delight. But the mysterious love story that unfolds is just as enchanting. Geoffrey Rush is fantastic, as always. A new movie I loved loved loved. Available On Demand and in theaters. 

Before Midnight
The third movie in a trilogy about a couple played by Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke. You should probably watch the first two before you watch this one, so you feel fully invested in their story, but I don't think it's necessary. You might actually lose interest before you get to the last installment, which would be a mistake. I watched this movie on a plane a few months ago, and I think about it often. The final scene between the two leads is the best depiction of the guts of a marriage I have ever seen on film. Ethan Hawke's character gets on your every last nerve, then redeems himself entirely in the final monologue. True art. Available on Netflix DVD and possibly On Demand. 

*Or we can just talk over the internet.

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