FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD

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FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD

If you’re a fan of Pride and Prejudice (with Kiera Knightley), then this movie is for you. There were so many things to love: the score, the cinematography, the cast, the costumes, the story…

I loved the two main characters. I admired the type of woman Bathsheba was with her strength and independence. How she was still strong even after she made a bad decision and did what she thought she’d never do. I think many women can relate to becoming that girl, who enters a relationship that is bad for her.

Most of all, I loved the kind of man Gabriel was, strong and kind (and gorgeous) and how he believed in her, loved her, and stood by her side. 

This is a movie I'll watch over and over again.

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PAPER TOWNS (BOOK + FILM)

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PAPER TOWNS (BOOK + FILM)

Paper Towns is incredibly anti-climatic. The movie even more so than the book. The story is about a boy obsessed with a girl he claims to be his miracle: Margo Roth Spiegelman. It was a story far different from what I thought it would be. Read no further if you don’t want spoilers. 

Before I get into the message of the book and film, let me note that I wasn't a fan of the casting for the film, although I did like Ansel Elgort's surprise cameo. As far as the book versus the film: The characters in the book seemed less paper than the ones in the film. The beginning of the book is more exciting than the beginning of the film. The middle of both the film and book are a bit dull. The film's ending was far different from the book. Which I think it needed to be because the book's end was even more underwhelming than the film's.

Anyway, turns out Margo is not Q’s miracle. Q is in love with her and puts her on a pedestal, yet he barely knows her. He becomes obsessed with finding her because he thinks that if he does, he will be this knight in shining armor. But that's not what happens at all. She didn't want to be found. She wasn't his to be found. She wasn't an adventure or a cure to his life. No, Margo was simply a girl, figuring out her place in the world and writing her story. 

And while I wasn't a fan of the movie (and the book was just okay), I did like the last five minutes when the true lesson was revealed. And it's a pretty important + darn good lesson. At the end of the film, Q admits he was wrong for romanticizing her and thinking he was entitled to her simply because he spent all that time tracking her down. The story shows how all too often we romanticize the people we fall for and forget that they're simply people. A girl is not the prize you get at the end of your adventure. A girl is a girl. 

I have so many more thoughts on this book. Like Q wasn't fully at fault. And there was more to him that this guy who wanted to grow up and have kids and a job. “You can argue…that Ahab is a fool for being obsessed. But you could also argue that there is something tragically heroic about fighting this battle he is doomed to lose.” 

Anyway, I'm still mulling the story over. Maybe I'll add to this post later. I want to think more about this quote (and others): “It is saying these things that keeps us from falling apart. And maybe by imagining these futures we can make them real, and maybe not, but either way we must imagine them. The light rushes out and floods in.”

Side note, I do prefer The Fault In Our Stars.

"What a treacherous thing to believe that a person is more than a person… And all at once I knew how Margo Roth Spiegelman felt when she wasn’t being Margo Roth Spiegelman: she felt empty. She felt the unscalable wall surrounding her. I thought of her asleep on the carpet with only that jagged sliver of sky above her. Maybe Margo felt comfortable there because Margo the person lived like that all the time: in an abandoned room with blocked-out windows, the only light pouring in through holes in the roof. Yes. The fundamental mistake I had always made—and that she had, in fairness, always led me to make—was this: Margo was not a miracle. She was not an adventure. She was not a fine and precious thing. She was a girl."

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INSIDE OUT

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INSIDE OUT

Pixar delivered another cute and clever movie. And a lot of reviews are saying it's one of their best yet. But unpopular opinion: I wouldn't put it in my top five favorite Pixar movies. That said, this movie tugged at my emotions and made me bawl. The part with Bing Bong and Joy in the pit, trying to escape on the wagon? That started the tears for me. 

The voice casting was fantastic. Poehler played a beautiful Joy and her energy steals the show. But oh sadness. I loved the message of how we need sadness in our life. It keeps us balanced and allows us to experience deeper joy later down the road. I loved the entire concept, about how things became a part of us and make us the person we are. I left the theater thinking about all the things that have contributed to who I am and thankful that they're a part of me.

I also loved the humor in this film. Dream Productions scenes and the end scene where Riley bumps into a boy and his response is a deer-in-the-headlights stare as the emotions in his head run around screaming as a "Girl!" warning plays over and over.

Overall, I'd say it's Pixar's most clever movie to date. 

Photo Credit: Disney

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ME AND EARL AND THE DYING GIRL

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ME AND EARL AND THE DYING GIRL

Another enduring independent film. The set design and camera shots/angles reminded me of a Wes Anderson movie. It was a sweet movie. I loved the cast. I loved the quirkiness, IE the films created by Earl and Greg, as well as Rachel's creations (revealed at the end of the film.) These three were the kind of hip and creative and quirky people I wish I'd either been in high school or friended in high school.

Photo Credit: 20th Century Fox

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JURASSIC WORLD

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JURASSIC WORLD

My roommate/cousin is the BIGGEST Jurassic Park fan.  Needless to say, he’d been counting down the days until premiere night for Jurassic World for the past two years. On Thursday night, he, a co-worker, and I waited in line for the 7 o’clock showing. He dressed as Dr. Alan Grant and received several “nice cosplay” comments and finger points. We got an excellent seat in the Cine Capri. And I was hooked on the movie the moment Chris Pratt showed up on screen. Jurassic World was pure entertainment. I loved and respected the nods to the first movie. I hearted the raptors and the returning T-Rex. That last scene had the audience cheering and clapping. Pure nerdiness and it was fun times. I left the theater wanting to see it again, which we did. On Sunday, I went with my aunt, uncle, cousin, and his grandpa to see it for the second time. Overall, highly entertaining film. And Chris. Freaking. Pratt. He's BA.

Photo credit: UNIVERSAL PICTURES

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