Black Swan

Natalie Portman - Black SwanLast weekend we went to see the Academy Award nominated film, Black Swan.

I had heard it was maybe a little scary and disturbing so I was ready for just about anything and glad that I’d been given a heads up before hand.

The film catches you from the beginning with the relationship between a grown daughter (though you’re not sure at first how old she is) and doting mother that sets an important tone. The director, Darren Aronofsky, often shows Nina, played by Natalie Portman, from just behind the nape of her neck as she walks briskly from place to place in a nervous patter like a bird.

Without going into all the details, Black Swan is really an exercise in watching someone go insane. The viewer isn’t sure what’s real anymore by the end of the film which of course makes us think that much harder about what we’ve seen.

It’s a very clever, disturbing and sad story brought to life so visually by a well cast Barbara Hershey,  Winona Ryder, Mila Kunis and Natalie Portman.  Ms. Portman is  the absolute front runner for an Academy Award for this performance. She was stunning. You would know what’s happening to her character even if this had been a silent movie.

The King’s Speech

kings speechThe King’s Speech

Movie Review

I had the good fortune to see The King’s Speech this afternoon. A 1:15 PM first showing of the day was very full with a mostly baby boomer audience who obviously wanted to see this Weinstein Company film that has received 4 Screen Actors Guild and 7 Golden Globe Nominations.

The film stars Colin Firth as the Duke of York and Helena Bonham Carter as his wife Elizabeth. King George V’s younger son suffers from a terrible stammer that becomes more severe when he has to make public speeches, a part of his life he simply cannot avoid.

His sympathetic wife looks for an expert to help him and finally stumbles upon Lionel Logue played by Geoffrey Rush.


Twilight Addiction

Okay, I admit it. Much to the embarrassment of most of my family, I am a Twilight Junkie.

I’ve read all four of Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight saga books, twice. Not to mention the internet only manuscript of Midnight Sun. I check out the latest gossip on the New Moon filming and look forward with great anticipation to 11.20.09 for the opening of Twilight #2. My desktop image is the New Moon poster released by Summit last week.

I’ve had in depth conversations with my 12 year old niece as well as several teenage fans of the series and I just can’t shake it. I know that I’ll eventually get over it, but until then, I plan to enjoy!


Taekwondo – Tae Kwon Do – Taekwon-Do

taekwondo sparringNo matter how you spell it, you’re talking about the most popular martial art in the world today.

There is no real explanation for the increased popularity, but I do have a theory. You see over the past, oh, 20 years or so, the World Taekwondo Federation, (also known as the WTF), has been successfully lobbying to have tae kwon do sparring as part of the Summer Olympic games.

Olympic Taekwondo Sparring has been seen in the Summer Olympics for several tours now beginning first as an exhibition and eventually becoming a medal sport. (more…)