About Me

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Recent retiree--35 year's experience teaching reading, English, adult basic education and volunteer leadership skills. Started this blog to exchange ideas and commentary with friends and others having an interest in joining the discussions. Greatest life accomplishments include: 1.organized my 3rd grade class to check out library books for me to get around librarian's weekly limit--Amazon.com, the Mullins Elementary 3rd Grade Class of 1956 is still waiting for "thank you" notes; 2. volunteered in the Peace Corps, island of St. Kitts, West Indies; 3.taught adults to read, earn their GEDs., and speak English as a second language; 4. bought a border collie puppy for $6, got evicted rather than give him up, and began a life-long love affair with all things "Dog"; 5. joined a physical fitness boot camp in my mid-50s--don't mess with someone who's been doing regulation pushups in wet grass at 5:30 a.m.; 6. walked across Northern England with best friend Sally--over 80 miles from the Irish to North Seas; and 7. travelled to many foreign countries for pleasure and work.

Friday, March 5, 2010

This Year at the Movies - Oscar Picks

So, here's the next installment in my picks for Oscars at the Academy Awards on Sunday night. Reader warning: you may be subjected to more film clips than you can handle. Just skim until something strikes your fancy. I just wanted to collect under one "roof" what were, in my opinion, some of the best films of the season.

Today my award winners are all about love--young love to be specific. Two movies are set in the early 1800s and based on actual historical events. First, there's The Young Victoria, the story of England's Queen Victoria and her Prince Albert. The second is Bright Star, director Jane Campion's re-telling of the poet John Keats' ill-fated love affair with a local English girl, Fanny Brawne. Next, we'll skip a century or so to 1961 for An Education--school girl from London suburbs meets an older man on her way to Oxford and gets side-tracked. Finally, there's 500 Days of Summer, a modern day not-love story.

The Young Victoria -- Best Original Musical Score, Costume Design(tie with Bright Star) and Runner up Best Song ("Only You" sung by Sinead O'Connor)

I love this movie so much--have seen it twice so far in the theater, will rent it as soon as it's on Netflix. Emily Blunt plays an 18 year old Queen Victoria who ascends to the throne suddenly when she is barely more than a girl. She is courageous and stubbornly determined to carry out her duties as Queen of England. She gets plenty of counsel, some not the best. At the same time, she is courted and falls in love with the shy, but equally savvy, Prince Albert of Austria, played by Rupert Friend. This movie tells the story of their awkward courtship, beginnings of a marriage and ruling partnership that provided stability for England for many years:

Emily Blunt and Rupert Friend are perfectly matched in this film. Even their bodies and personalities hint at what we know of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. Emily Blunt, as Victoria is sturdy of frame, direct and open in her dealings with people. Rupert Friend, as Prince Albert, is almost frail in appearance. He reads people, understands the politics, and wants Victoria to be the people's queen with his help. The costumes are perfect. If queens wore business attire, they would look like the costumes in this film--beautiful, but free of excess. The original score, composed by Ilan Eshkari, with its swelling strings adds so much to the love story in this film.

Continued on Saturday!


Debs said...

I loved this film and cried at the end. It was so beautiful, yet so sad to think that he died so young.

Jan n Jer said...

I think you could be a British girl...I have not seen these films. Really dont get out to the movies that much. Am looking forward to watching the Oscars though...that way we find out what the good movies are and then rent them. I know where you an Willie will be tonite..LOL... Enjoy Faye

Lane said...

I still haven't seen this. It looks fantastic.

I hope you and Willie are well set up with some popcorn as you hunker down to watch this evening:-)