My only New Year's resolution for 2010 was to spend an hour every day writing. Most days I spend that hour working on a book I started last summer, but as a change of pace, I started this blog. I'm finding it a great way to practice writing. I watch a lot of movies and I read quite a few books, so the original idea for the blog was to write reviews. I'm still interested in writing reviews, but I've enjoyed writing about other topics as well, so I guess the blog will be about whatever is on my mind when I take a break from working on the book. Tonight, I have a bunch of movies and books to catch up on.
Meg and I watched Everybody's Fine a couple weekends ago. DeNiro plays a widower trying to reconnect with his kids. He hits the road to see his kids, and much enlightenment ensues. Pretty formulaic movie, but I'm a sucker for family dramas and road trip movies, so I actually liked this more than I thought I would. The next day I braved the mall and took the girls to see How To Train Your Dragon. I know this is a kid's movie, and my kids thoroughly enjoyed it, but I probably liked it more than they did. That night Meg and I watched An Education. I know this was nominated for Best Picture, but I wasn't impressed. Call me old-fashioned, but I don't really want to watch a 16 year old girl have a relationship with a creepy older guy, especially when he's played by Peter Skaarsgaard, not my favorite actor. I read a number of reviews comparing Carey Mulligan to Audrey Hepburn, but I was reminded of Katie Holmes circa Dawson's Creek, and that's not a good thing. This past Saturday, we watched The Blind Side. It's hard not to like this movie. I can't say it's Best Picture material, but it's a solid movie about a truly inspirational group of people. While I think Sandra Bullock did a nice job, I find it absolutely ridiculous that she won Best Actress for this performance. There is simply no way a sane human being can tell me her performance was better than Gabourey Sidibe's in Precious. That gets me caught up with movies.
On the book front, just a couple to write about, but they're both excellent. This Is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper is a great book. The main character, Judd Foxman, is going home to sit shiva for his dead father. His family has a hard time being in the same room, so the seven days of shiva are full of plenty of fireworks. Tropper has a great sense of humor and writes wonderful, fully-developed characters. This is the second Tropper book I've read in a month, and I have another ready to go. Big fan. The last book I finished was bird by bird by Anne Lamott. This is an excellent book about writing, full of sage advice and concrete suggestions for aspiring writers. Lamott recommends writing at least 300 words a day. I think this post fits the bill.