Tuesday, December 05, 2017
Monday, December 04, 2017
We also get to meet her younger sisters Katherine and Mary, who are at the mercy of their cousin Queen Elizabeth the First and must follow her instructions or risk being branded traitors like their sister.
For me this felt like an original story about three sisters where there is little written about them, and I enjoyed the novel, easily getting lost in the Tudor times and thinking about how heavy and awkward those big dresses must have been to wear. 4/5
Saturday, December 02, 2017
At the time it came out I lived in London and I remember going to see it at a cinema in Wimbledon which had 1/2 smoking and non smoking seats. So you coughed all the way through and came out stinking.
At our work Christmas party that year one of the young girls turned up wearing a knock off of the Versace safety pin dress that Luz Hurley wore to the premiere. The boys at work talked about it for months after.
Oh and I had a boyfriend who was an extra in the final church scene. It was so long ago I can't remember what he looked like - haha.
So everytime I watch the movie it makes me smile and remember my years living in London. I love it's easy English charm and funny characters, and have a soft spot for a young Hugh Grant. So a highlight if the holiday season as all the old movies are rolled out again. A refreshing change from car chases, computer generated special effects and super heroes.
Tuesday, November 28, 2017
Her book is part autobiography and part self help in how to get on with your life, to ignore the bullies, how she was able to move on after her divorce, why she doesn't want children, how after a variety of mundane jobs she decided to try being a comedian. All of it was interesting and entertaining, and I felt at the end of the book I liked her even more. 4/5
Monday, November 27, 2017
I thought I would love it - Colin Firth, Mark Strong are all good actors - Nicole Kidman is a bit meh for me but she can still carry a film. I couldn't help but feel that if I were waking up next to Colin Firth each morning, I would be happy. Not having to go to work and swanning round in the big house would be cool too. Colour me jealous, but I would have made the most of it, rather than being all morose and moody.
So it is a sad 2/5 from me.
Sunday, November 26, 2017
It is the story of Ray Kroc one of the founders of the McDonalds chain of fast food restaurants. Its an interesting story, but I can't really say I enjoyed it. Ray seemed to have spent his time ripping off the original McDonalds founders brothers Maurice and Richard. He seemed to undermine them at every turn, and ended up mega rich, while the brothers were forced to close and were not legally entitled to the money that had been promised to them. His sneaky business tactics did not make me like him, and in the end I became a bit bored with this movie. 2/5
Saturday, November 25, 2017
Living with the stories of their wartime experiences, the author considers what happens as they grow older and when they die - who will tell these stories? How the children and families of survivors also suffer from the pain that parents still feel and carry. She also talks about many other major traumas in recent history and the effect on survivors and their families - how they move forward yet still honor their loved ones. 4/5
Friday, November 24, 2017
It can be tricky for a lot of people to deal with as each death affects us differently, and everybody has their own way of processing that pain, and you can see that her job is to help guide people into moving on with their lives while acknowledging the loss.
While interesting - I felt a bit detached from this book. 3/5
Thursday, November 23, 2017
Being the same age myself, I could understand her position, but I found it all terribly predictable and a bit smug and self important. I felt that if I knew Kate, I wouldn't like her much and felt like I had to trawl through this brick of a book. 2/5
Tuesday, November 21, 2017
Monday, November 20, 2017
Sunday, November 19, 2017
This however is the story mainly about Caroline and her life, and somehow I think I was expecting to find some Jane Austen secrets in the book. A found manuscript, a hidden locket or bonnets found in the attic - alas it was not to be,and I came away none the wiser about the author. I did however get an understanding of how tough it must have been two hundred years ago, when women's lives were at the mercy of the menfolk of the family. How they relied on the their fathers and brothers to look after them, and there must have been limited security, as the women would often be made homeless when husbands and fathers died.
With a great increase in the interest in Jane Austen in the past few decades, Caroline Knight to her credit has been telling her story at events, and updated the family history of Chawton House, which was last written about 100 years ago by her great grandfather. She has also established a foundation to assist with literacy using her famous great aunts name. 3/5
Wednesday, November 15, 2017
The story had quite a few twists and turns, you can never be quite sure how it will go, and I liked that but somehow I didn't quite believe it and for me it felt a bit forced. Maybe because there are so many thriller books/movies/shows around that I have become a bit jaded, and it has become a bit more difficult to find a story that feels original. It is a genre of books that I don't read as much of anymore. Maybe its not him - its me! 2/5
Sunday, November 12, 2017
David Attenborough is a treasure too - the real voice of the series and he makes even the most harrowing scenes palatable. I'm the girl who wasn't allowed to watch Lassie as a child, as it upset me too much, and so I find scenes where animals are starving or hunting others a bit hard to watch. So I hope it is playing for you soon.
Saturday, November 11, 2017
Visually the set and costumes brought you straight into the period - the costume and set designers had done their jobs superbly. Everything looked straight out of the amazing paintings that litter the walls of all the great art museums. The story itself was good, but there just seemed to be something lacking in this movie, I think the chemistry was lacking between the main characters, they all seemed a bit wooden in their roles. Although we were given a few sex scenes, they seemed to lack any passion and it is often the quieter moments when a look or a glance or a touch is more real and full of emotion, and there were little to none of these given to the audience.
I wanted the movie to flow too, and yet it felt a little disjointed and slow, trudging through the scenes. What could have been a great movie, was just ok. 3/5
Wednesday, November 08, 2017
I think all of us females have issues - we all see our faults, we worry about how we look and we spend out life comparing ourselves to others, and most of us feel that we are not good enough. How are lives would be better if we were taller, thinner, had bigger breasts, bigger butts, longer hair, better skin, nicer teeth, more muscles etc, etc... Imagine if we could all be happy and even proud of these beautiful bodies that carry us round, that carry us through our lives.
This book was a great read, I devoured it in a couple of nights, and now will seek out her other works. 5/5
Sunday, November 05, 2017
Instead of being a loving reunion it is terribly confronting as the elderly Traudi is proud of her past - of assisting in Auschwitz in torturing and killing women and children, and deserting her own child to serve the Reich. She does not understand why her daughter doesn't love her.
More a Sunday evening drama than a Saturday afternoon entertainment. 3/5
Friday, November 03, 2017
Tuesday, October 31, 2017
An interesting and intriguing read about her spiritual journey and understanding. I felt lighter after reading this book. 4/5
Thursday, October 26, 2017
The first half of the novel was incredibly tense and fast paced, and I felt myself drawn to the story, but I got a little lost in the middle section. While I sympathized with the situation Tom was in, I found him a bit grating, and felt he was quite annoying. 3/5
Wednesday, October 25, 2017
Things begin to impact on the family, as people realize that the Amish community has food stored and pressure mounts on Jacob and his family to relinquish some of their supplies.
It made me feel a bit tense at the beginning of the novel, and maybe I expected it to head in a different direction than it did. 4/5
Tuesday, October 24, 2017
I was waiting for some Bronte secret to be unearthed or for the snarky Samantha to turn into a nicer character, instead I was annoyed with her from the beginning to the end. She seemed a bit frozen into a immature girl by her overbearing but dead father, home schooled by mainly reading Bronte novels which she seemed to hate
Monday, October 23, 2017
All this changes when she has contact with IT worker Raymond and they help an elderly man, Eleanors empty world begins to expand and with it changes that she does not expect.
I enjoyed this story, and understood the sadness, loneliness and isolation that Eleanor lives, and liked how she slowly was able to venture out, and how that brings her some type of happiness. I am sure that this one will be made into a movie, and I hope they don't ruin it a la Bridget Jones style. 4/5
Sunday, October 22, 2017
Set in the early 1930s in Hollywood,Bobby a young New Yorker comes to seek out his successful uncle who has made a career as a talent agent. His uncle sends him out with his assistant Ronnie, who he falls in love with, but she has a boyfriend. So begins the love triangle that is the heart of the story.
While visually nice to look at it still felt like a series of overdone sets, and expensive designer outfits that seemed out of place. For me there was something missing in this Woody Allen story, a lack of humor or charm maybe, but I didn't click with the whole thing and was quite bored. 2/5
Saturday, October 21, 2017
I didn't know much going in, except that Sally Hawkins and Ethan Hawke were in it. What a special little movie this one is. It is based on a real life Canadian painter, Maude Lewis and the story about her life and love with her husband. I won't spoil it with the whole plot - have a nosy at the trailer if you are interested.
We did leave with smiles, even though there was some sadness, and an appreciation for our indoor plumbing, big couches and warm beds. Also if we win lotto tonight we are going to go and rent a cottage for a month in Nova Scotia - just not in the winter time. Also maybe I will dream of a husband who can push me round on a little wagon!! 4.5/5
Wednesday, October 18, 2017
Tuesday, October 17, 2017
With advances in genetic testing many of the family bring themselves forward to be tested, and after Joselin and her sister both test positive, it them forces them into making many ethical choices about whether to have children or not and what treatments to undergo, when there is no proven treatment plan.
Fascinating stuff - it makes you wonder what you would do in a similar circumstance and you have to admire her bravery for writing this book. 5/5
Sunday, October 15, 2017
Being an adult she still has some encounters that are scary, her description of a difficult childbirth made me hold my breath as did the final story when she talks about her daughter, fragile and at risk of anaphylaxis to a multitude of allergies.
The book itself did feel a bit disjointed to me, maybe because it was not in chronological order.
Friday, October 13, 2017
A very interesting premise and I loved the idea - who wouldn't feel a bit giddy at the chance to become involved in the world of Jane Austen and meet the author herself? I did feel that the sense of wonderment was a bit lacking in the story, how even with all the training the main characters underwent how the sights and smells would have been quite astonishing even for us. How hard it must have been to not talk or act in a modern way. 4/5
Thursday, October 12, 2017
I enjoyed reading about the relationship and could see how easy it would be to bond with these intelligent animals. I would find it hard to think of killing and eating my own animals, and if I think about it too hard, it makes me want to turn vegetarian straight away. So I understand the author being conflicted about thinking about killing their pigs. 4/5
Sunday, October 08, 2017
Obviously the neighborhood youth do not arise before 10am, so I was able to get up this morning and watch the last of the movie over breakfast. So Chris Pratt, is Jim, an engineer who finds himself awaken aboard his spaceship. The problem is that he is the only one awake, and they are 30 years from earth, and 90 years from their destination. What to do?
This is one of those movies that felt like a little more style over substance. While Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence are hugely watchable, and the special effects were pretty amazing, I just wasn't touched by the story and wished that somehow the plot was a bit more developed. 3/5
Thursday, October 05, 2017
I guess these are his dinner party stories, which he probably couldn't tell over dinner as most would upset sensitive diners. Me - well I like such tales and so I enjoyed it. 4/5
Wednesday, October 04, 2017
As an adult she has become a renowned psychologist and in this book she describes how many of the things she learned have been able to help her with her own healing. Remarkable. 5/5
Monday, October 02, 2017
I guess you know the story, Dame Judi Dench plays the elderly Queen Victoria who becomes enamoured with a young handsome servant Abdul, who had been sent from India to present a coin to the Queen.
Depressed and lonely, the friendship develops and he helps to teach her about the Indian culture and language. Family and staff though are suspicious especially as they spend so much time together.
Wonderful performances, sensational interiors, beautiful costumes and lots of actors of all ages without any botox in view all make it my type of favorite watch. 4.5/5
Saturday, September 30, 2017
The second part of the memoir is pretty daunting, as Joyce and Jim try to decide what treatments to pursue and whose advice they should follow. They seek out other sufferers and survivors to find out what worked for them and meet people for advice and support, watching most eventually die of this horrid disease.
I could have carried on reading for so much longer, as Joyce opened up on her life, but the story did eventually have to end. I didn't cry, but just felt in awe of reading this book, which felt like reading one big private love letter. 5/5
Friday, September 29, 2017
Not the happiest if stories to read, Grace has a fairly tough life where she suffers a lot of sorrow and worries, it does give a snapshot of what life must have been like for a lot of women in that era. 4/5
Tuesday, September 26, 2017
When the race ends, Dion realizes that he has a real connection with the wee pup he calls Gobi and sets about to see if he can get her taken back to his home in Scotland. Things are not quite so simple though, and the story reinforces your faith in most people (of course there are a few crazy and dangerous ones too).
So all in all, a good little man and dog story. 5/5
Monday, September 25, 2017
Sunday, September 24, 2017
Saturday, September 23, 2017
The premise is pretty simple. Amy Schumer plays the usual dizzy version of herself, while Goldie Hawn plays her more serious worry wart mother. After a boyfriend break up, Amy is forced into taking her mother on a holiday to Ecuador. After meeting a handsome young man, the ladies find themselves abducted. Hilarious hijinks are meant to ensue, but we found ourselves bored and chit chatted throughout.
We didn't have nightmares about scary clowns or aging comedians with two much filler. 2/5
Friday, September 22, 2017
I didn't find it too scary, although there were quite a few jump off your seat scares for the folks seated around us. I did enjoy the goonies/stand by me friendship theme running throughout the story. 4/5
Thursday, September 21, 2017
This is a gentle slow novel and although it didn't offer any surprises it did keep me entertained. 3/5.
Tuesday, September 19, 2017
Monday, September 18, 2017
Sunday, September 17, 2017
Mary is in her 20s and just out of prison for a violent attack. She is to be a matron of honor at her best friends wedding, but needs to find a date to be her plus one. On line it is described as an Irish comedy but it is not roll around the floor funny and I would think it should be under the drama genre.
It was OK, and although we knew little about it we were entertained and a little surprised at how it ended. 3/5
Thursday, September 14, 2017
The formula for most of these movies is common for most of these movies:
- Some large landmark will be destroyed with sad music playing
- The main characters generally will survive the disaster, after several close calls of planes crashing, hanging off cliffs, sinking etc
- There will be a love interest, all quiet looks at the beginning and a lusty embrace at the end
- The baddie will get their comeuppance at the end, and usually die in some gruesome way
Now being a middle aged lady, I seldom venture to the cinema to see such movies and are content to stream them for a cheaper price or wait until they are on free tv. After watching the news lately with the two large hurricanes in the US and flooding in Asia, it seems that real life is far more extreme than the fiction we normally watch. With hundreds of thousands of people affected and left hungry and homeless, I can't help but think I am lucky that we have not had such disasters here. So I am thinking that the universal appeal of such movies, is that for all of us, we are just trying to survive and get through, and we all think about what we would do in the same circumstances.
Tuesday, September 12, 2017
In 1939 we meet Kristoff who is taken in by an Austrian stamp engraver and his young daughters. With the Nazis approaching the Jewish family do not feel safe.
A unique spin on a second world war novel.
Sunday, September 10, 2017
Based on the classic 1874 novel from Thomas Hardy that I had never read it was a glimpse into a genre that appeals to me. The tale of a woman, in a world where it was difficult for her to have independence, status and choices, when being married usually meant losing her money and having to yield to her husband. Bathsheba Everdene helps on her aunties farm, before she inherits her own estate (lucky girl). She gets involved with three different men, who all fall in love with her instantly and who will she choose?
I always enjoy watching Carey Mulligan, and I loved the costumes, scenery and handsome men. The story was a little flat for me - somehow the passion and love seemed a bit muted. Still a 4/5.
Tuesday, September 05, 2017
I look forward to see where her next stories go. 4/5
Monday, September 04, 2017
Sunday, September 03, 2017
I won't give the whole plot away, Wikipedia can tell you the whole thing. I really liked the middle portion, but felt beginning and end were a bit flat and boring. Billy Connelly was especially good in his role and it never seemed like he was acting, more like just being a version of himself. 3/5
Saturday, September 02, 2017
A usual case of the old double cross and not knowing if our characters were working for the goodies or the baddies left me a little bored . Like the Sex and the City movies, it felt like it was trying to recreate a period of time and place that had moved on. 2/5
Thursday, August 31, 2017
It was fascinating to read about his journey to both Nasa and then into space. Although it looks cool to float around the space station the realities of flight made me think I would be space sick the whole time and would not tolerate the lack of showers well. Hats off to the men and women who step up to do this job.