Welcome to my quick reviews ~ a mix of short takes on movies and books I’ve recently watched or read. Note that I don’t have a problem blabbing spoilers, so if that bothers you, skip this post. Also, if you’re wondering why I am formatting my list like this, it’s because every time I allow the block editor to create an automagic list, it’s a complete disaster.
1 ~ Trust Fund. This 2016 movie stars a bunch of actors you haven’t heard of. The title is fun because it’s not just about the financial aspect of a trust fund, but also a reservoir of trust that gets depleted and refilled. Reese, the heroine, is a gorgeous young woman who is being supported by her mega-rich father while she “writes a novel.” She has a sister Audrey who works hard every day in their father’s PUBLISHING COMPANY and resents Reese for flitting around and wasting her life. Reese discovers that their deceased mother actually left the sisters a pile of money that her father has been doling out in a plan to make them productive citizens. Eff that, thinks Reese, and steals her half of the money. She immediately jaunts off to Italy and hooks up with a sexy criminal. Predictability ensues, and Reese ends up returning home with nothing. But because this is a silly romcom (sort of), it turns out she is actually a fabulous writer, churns out a best-seller that her father’s new wife (also a publisher) publishes, and remembers that she actually loves a cute guy she’s known since childhood. Sort of a sugary meaningless movie, if you feel like watching one of those.
2 ~ Traitor Born by Amy A. Barton. This book is intense! It’s total fantasy sci-fi, which I don’t always like, except when I do. I read the first book in the series a while back and received a notification that the next two were available. This is the second one. It’s fabulous! Every chapter is filled with exciting action, roiling emotions, and stunning descriptions of life in the fictional universe. It’s completely unpredictable, which makes for an interesting read. Amy goes into great detail regarding people’s looks, clothing, housing, weapons, social status, etc., and all that grounds the reader in this bizarre world as fantastical things occur. I have the third one in my queue to read as well. Five stars!
3 ~ Rebel Born by Amy A. Barton. Welp, I couldn’t resist diving right into the last book of the Secondborn trilogy as soon as I finished the previous one. It did not disappoint. Full of action and unexpected twists, this final story delivered the reading goods for me. And as an extra treat, this book veered into the philosophical realm, which pleased me even more. First-rate fantasy sci-fi right here folks, not to mention a love story as well. Five stars. Highly, HIGHLY recommend the three books (begin with Secondborn). What I’d really like to do is gobble up more of Amy’s books, but I’m trying to pace myself and read the other books in order in my Kindle queue.
4 ~ Zack & Miri Make a Porno. This 2008 romcom stars Seth Rogen and Elizabeth Banks. It kept coming up on my Prime list, so finally I said OK and clicked. It’s so predictable and stupid. Maybe I’m old now, but all the crude sexual stuff just makes me cringe. I did enjoy the “love story” last quarter of the film however. There were a few other parts I liked… when they riff over what to name their porno and when Zach comes up with the Star Wars spoof script and funny names for the characters. Amusing wordplay. But mostly? Barf. It was a struggle not to turn it off during the first fifteen minutes.
5 ~ The Father, starring Anthony Hopkins. This 2020 movie is so good. It’s not a “fun” movie, nor an exciting one; it’s very sad and very profound. We experience daily life through the eyes of a man afflicted with dementia, and the film is shot in such a way that makes us feel as disoriented as he does. Why are the chairs in different places today? What happened to the picture over the fireplace? Who is that man sitting in my living room? Why hasn’t my youngest child visited me in so long? Time passes differently. What happened 10 years ago might be yesterday and vice versa. We don’t remember what someone told us a half hour ago. This movie brought back vivid memories of my father. He suffered from dementia for many years and ultimately had to go into an assisted living home. Anthony Hopkins won Best Actor at the Academy Awards for this film, and it was well deserved.
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