Tag Archives: romcoms

Six Degrees 2 [blogcarnelli]

Kevin Bacon six degrees

1. Today I’m taking the last entry from my previous post (“Folsom Prison Blues”) and using the theme of feeling stuck (a word in FBP’s lyrics). One of my favorite songs, “Hotel California,” also has a trapped theme. It’s by the Eagles. Initially the narrator feels welcome at the HC, but eventually realizes there is no escape. The song includes the line this could be heaven or this could be hell.

2. The 2019 movie Vivarium (starring Jesse Eisenberg and Imogen Poots) also switches from the idea of something that seems great to the realization that it’s horrible. A young couple go to look at their possible dream home with an estate agent. He disappears and the couple is left stranded in a maze of horror. They are forced to raise a baby who may be some kind of demon from hell (or an alien).

3. Speaking of hellish homes, I present We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson. What’s going on here? Is this creepy family dead or alive? I enjoyed this psychological horror story very much. I also love a story told by an unreliable narrator. The novel has two sisters as main characters.

4. One of my favorite romcoms, 27 Dresses, features two sisters dealing with their romances. They are first of all in love with the same man (for a while) and second must untangle themselves from various deceptions. It’s a funny and sweet film.

5. “Alice’s Restaurant” repeats the lyric 27 glossy photos with circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one to be used as evidence against us. Those were pictures of the heap of trash that the narrator and a friend illegally added to on Thanksgiving. This is a war protest song by Arlo Guthrie about the Vietnam draft, among other things.

6. My Trashy Romance is a fun story about a trash collector who falls for a librarian. Initially, they hit it off, but she discovers something that upsets her, so she breaks up with him. But does he win her back? This witty novel is written by my real-life friend Terry Black.

Okay, that’s it for my second six degrees / blog Carnelli post and I will continue on at some future date…

~*~

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Photo credit ~ Kevin Bacon, the original six degrees dude, via Google

Truthful Tuesday Movies

Bitmoji movie popcorn

I found this fun prompt, though I didn’t have time to reply on Tuesday. We are to list which three movies best sum up our taste in movies and why.

  1. Analyze This. This is a 1999 comedy directed by Harold Ramis and stars Billy Crystal and Robert De Niro. It’s a spoof of mafia films but also has a serious storyline, like the Sopranos TV show. Even on a recent rewatch, I cracked up. It basically has all the things I love: humor, violence, the mob, psychiatrist jokes, Robert De Niro, etc. I almost feel like I’m cheating to include this movie, since it perfectly illustrates the kind of comedy I adore, plus it has the mafia. There are better mafia movies ~ I’d probably choose Goodfellas as my all-time favorite, but since I’m limited to three, I will combine laughs with the mob to showcase my tastes.
  2. 27 Dresses. Obviously, I have to include a romcom in my list! This one is perfection because it’s actually two romcoms in one, plus it has sisters. I love stories with sisters (and no, they are not mixed up twins). The storyline also involves two parallel themes of deceptive identity, which keeps the tension high, and everything is resolved at the end as love conquers all. This movie is simply the epitome of a romcom, giving us the identity issue a la You’ve Got Mail (another super fave) but sans the emotional infidelity. It was hard not to choose WHMS, which I love, but it has some elements that make it less than perfect for me, such as the hero being a player off and on.
  3. Chicago. I love love love musicals and this one is fabulous! Every character is brilliant, the songs are wonderful, and the dancing is tops. I can watch it over and over again. There are other great musicals, of course, but this one encompasses everything. I admit I am partial to Catherine Zeta-Jones ~ loved her since I first saw her in Zorro ~ and Queen Latifah is excellent as the prison warden. Plus, Richard Gere costars as a devious, clever attorney, and he is just so good (have been a fan of his ever since I first saw him in American Gigolo). Renee Zellweger also stars and she isn’t usually a favorite of mine, except in this. Other top musical contenders are Walk the Line, Fiddler on the Roof, The Sound of Music, and My Fair Lady.

Doesn’t this list make it seem as though I’m not into dramas? Untrue! I love a good drama, but there isn’t a particular one that sums up dramas for me. Doctor Zhivago is wonderful, but it stands alone rather than being a type. Same goes for The Dark Knight, which imo isn’t representative of superhero movies, since I don’t generally care for them. I enjoy some science fiction, but it has to be character-driven like the original Star Trek (I liked the films with the actors from the original series). I’m not a big fan of screwball stuff or movies that are all action. There are exceptions ~ I liked San Andreas and I enjoy the Bond flicks.

I think I’ve rambled on enough for one post. 🤣

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Written for Truthful Tuesday.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Image credit ~ Bitmoji

30 Day Film Challenge 5

I found this fun challenge at Sandmanjazz. As I did with the books (not the bingo, but the 30 days), I’m going to do these movies in blocks. So instead of a post a day for 30 days, I’ll have 6 posts total. Here’s my fifth set of films…

21. You’ve Got Mail and 27 Dresses are tied for my favorite romcoms… and they both make me want to fall in love. They have that standard romance novel trope of mistaken identity, but I’m not tired of it. Unlike other tropes (switching places, time travel, misunderstood eavesdropping, etc.), mistaken identity stories still appeal to me. You fall in love with someone, not knowing who they really are, but when the truth is finally revealed, you love them even more. Why I like this the best, idk. Probably some freudian thing…

22. Fantasy-world films, like most sci-fi, do not normally appeal to me. But there are always exceptions. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children’s was a fantasy film I loved.

23. Risky Business means a lot to me. Weird, right? I have nothing in common with any of those characters. But I knew people like them. The idea that Joel’s hard work meant nothing to the Princeton recruiter, but setting the dude up with a hooker got him in… well, that just sums up our effed-up values as a society, doesn’t it? Even I go ooh Ivy League to this day until I step back for a second and remind myself of (waves arms) everything.

24. I don’t normally care about directors ~ I like what I like. But Rob Reiner and Martin Scorsese happened to have directed a large number of my faves. Since I’ve already mentioned a few of RR’s films (WHMS, Alex & Emma), I will give Marty a shout-out here. Goodfellas is in my top 5 favorite films of all time, and it’s a Scorsese-directed flick. I do rewatch it frequently. Don’t forget After Hours though, a super weird dark comedy with no mafia characters. It is also one of Marty’s and I love it.

25. A film that inspired me? Hmm. Hidden Figures was pretty inspiring, not that I could relate to it personally, since I don’t struggle for anything because lazy. If it’s difficult, I give up. But I appreciate how others keep fighting for their dreams.

I’ll be back! (On the 30th.) 🤣

~*~

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

30 Day Film Challenge 4

I found this fun challenge at Sandmanjazz. As I did with the books (not the bingo, but the 30 days), I’m going to do these movies in blocks. So instead of a post a day for 30 days, I’ll have 6 posts total. Here’s my fourth set of films…

16. Life of Pi has a number in the title and is a great film besides (haven’t read the book). I recommend seeing it in 3D.

17. Not a huge fan of animated films, but I did enjoy The Lion King and also Frozen. The music made them standouts. 🎶

18. A movie I think about a lot is When Harry Met Sally. It seems so romantic but in fact is full of drama and angst. The relationship between Jess and Marie (side characters) is actually closer to my ideal.

19. Her is set in the future and while it’s not my favorite film, it certainly was intriguing regarding the nature of relationships.

20. Blade Runner was scary (also set in the future). I loved it!

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©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

30 Day Film Challenge 3

30 day film challenge

I found this fun challenge at Sandmanjazz. As I did with the books (not the bingo, but the 30 days), I’m going to do these movies in blocks. So instead of a post a day for 30 days, I’ll have 6 posts total. Here’s my third set of films…

11. Every romcom makes me silently cheer with happiness when things work out. You’ve Got Mail is a great example of this.

12. The Hotel Budapest was confusing imo.

13. Under the Tuscan Sun gave me a craving to visit Italy. And whenever I see Hugh Grant on the screen, I’d like to travel to England…

14. Generally, I won’t watch sports movies, but I loved Moneyball (about baseball). It helped that Brad Pitt starred.

15. Philomena was an incredibly sad movie, but super great. Of course! Judi Dench stars in it.

See ya next round! 🙂

~*~

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

30 Day Film Challenge 1

30 day film challenge

I found this fun challenge at Sandmanjazz. As I did with the books (not the bingo, but the 30 days), I’m going to do these movies in blocks. So instead of a post a day for 30 days, I’ll have 6 posts total. Here’s my first set of films…

1. The first movie I remember seeing in a cinema was The Sound of Music. I was about 5 years old. I loved it then and I love it now. Wonderful music. Julie Andrews was spectacular. ❤️🎶

2. I didn’t watch films on repeat as a child. We saw movies once each and then walked back 5 miles in the snow to huddle in front of our black and white television.

3. A film that makes me LOL to this day is My Big Fat Greek Wedding. It’s hysterical!

4. The Big Short begins with “the” and is an excellent movie besides. I just adore Steve Carell. (Not in Space Force though. I really wanted to like it, but meh.)

5. I always say Alex & Emma is underrated. It’s a super funny movie about writer’s block… and it’s also a romcom. I pretty much love any movie with Kate Hudson.

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©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

5 Things [Movies On Repeat]

Bitmoji watching movies with remote in hand

Dr. Tanya asks us to list 5 movies we love to watch over and over again. Funny, but I love the 5 movies she chose! I’d watch any of them again (and I have, especially The Devil Wears Prada and You’ve Got Mail), but I will choose 5 different ones to make this fun. There are so many good films!

  1. Young Frankenstein. Omg, this film is hilarious! I try to watch it every year around Halloween (though I missed in 2019, so I definitely will have to view it this fall). Such a great flick with a fantastic cast.
  2. Risky Business. This one has a special place in my heart. It’s set in the Chicago area, which is where I saw it the first time. I played hooky from a class and went to see it alone. Absolutely loved it. The entire theater erupted in screams when Joel said, “Looks like… UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS!” The music from Tangerine Dream and Talking Heads is great too.
  3. Chicago. Speaking of Chicago! I adore this musical… and musicals in general (could be my whole list really). Not sure if this is my fave musical of all time, but it’s the one I pick lately when I want to watch/listen again. It’s just so freaking excellent. Who knew Richard Gere could sing? Right? What’s interesting is I can’t stand Renee Zellweger in anything else. Nothing. She’s so annoying. But this I love.
  4. Goodfellas. Got to get my mob props in here somewhere. This is the best mob movie, I think. I’ve seen many and will always stop on a dime and rewatch this if I happen to run across it. Doesn’t matter where it is in progress either. Also, I own it and can simply view the whole thing anytime. Such an excellent flick. A perfectly told story.
  5. When Harry Met Sally. I go back and forth about my favorite love story and ultimately I do believe this is it (at least today anyway!). First, the Harry/Sally love story is far from “perfect,” which, in a way, just makes it that much better. They are imperfect people who behave in cringeworthy ways… like um actual humans. You’re like ugh no don’t say that, don’t do that. But they do and things get more tangled up. Second, while Harry/Sally are messing up their love life, we have the two secondary characters, Jesse and Marie, engaged in a truly perfect love story, so that’s cool. Third, there are so many funny scenes and quotable lines from this movie… it just stays with me. In fact, I want to watch it again soon!

~*~

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Image credited to Bitmoji.

Couple More Movies + Bonus Peeve!

Bitmoji popcorn

I’m still not watching much TV in isolation, but I feel lucky I stumbled onto these two gems this past week. I vastly prefer a movie to a series. I like to be finished with a thing and know how it ends after a small time commitment. There are exceptions, of course, for fabulous shows like GOT, SFU, BB, etc. But I’m mostly not willing to keep trying one mediocre E1 after another.

1. The Duchess. This 2008 British drama starring Kiera Knightly and Ralph Fiennes is directed by Saul Dibb. It’s based on the married life of a real person, Georgiana Cavendish, the Duchess of Devonshire. Amanda Foreman wrote the biography upon which the movie is based. Michael O’Connor won the Academy Award for Best Costume ~ and the costumes are stunning. This is not a romance novel come to life, though it appears to begin as one. As time goes on, I keep hoping for happily ever after for the Duchess, but happiness seems to elude her at every turn. She has a wealthy and protected life, with every whim indulged, and we don’t dive into the problems of ordinary Englishmen in this film… one needs to be aware. But it is also true, and this is brought home to us a few times, that Georgiana’s life of luxury could be taken away at any point because her husband holds the key to everything. He gets to have a lover (as many as he pleases) when bored with marriage; she does not. There is criticism that the film is slow-moving, which I suppose it is, but I enjoyed it very much.

2. Off the Menu. Okay, here we do have a relatively typical rom-com. This 2018 Prime movie is directed by Jay Silverman and written by Jennifer Goldson. It stars Santino Fontana as Joel Flanagan and Dania Ramirez as Javiera Torres. Joel is an aimless rich dude; he’s living off his inheritance in a fancy house and trying out new health routines to the annoyance of his girlfriend, who dumps him. He has a law degree but hardly uses it. His ambitious sister, who heads the family fast food business, forces Joel to go on a quest for the perfect new taco taste to revitalize their sagging sales. But he hates Mexican food! He ends up in a small town at Javiera’s restaurant. Javiera is a single mom, struggling to keep her business going while refusing to serve anything but the freshest, most authentic Mexican cuisine. She hates fast food! Etc. It was cute.

Neither the visual nor the html menus will allow me to insert a line of white space between my two movies. I could take the numbers off entirely, but why? Why can’t I have my blank line? It’s as annoying as Word! Is that the aim of the Happiness Engineers, to make us scream with as much frustration here as when we’re trying to format a document in Word? If so, great job, guys! 🤬🤬🤬

Maybe I should watch Anger Management next…

~*~

Image credited to Bitmoji.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Movie Madness

So, I decided to start watching movies again. Idk why I stopped. Just got out of the habit, I guess. For practical reasons, it’s a good idea for me to sit on the comfy sofa sometimes instead of hunched over my laptop at the kitchen table. Anyway…

1. Timeless Love (Prime). This stars Rachel Skarsten and Brant Daugherty. It’s directed by Brian Brough. I was very pleased with my first choice, as it was a sweet fluffy story about a woman who dreams of a husband and children while in a coma and wakes to find they don’t exist. Naturally, she is distraught. When she mentions her conviction that she believes it was more than a dream, people think she’s nuts. Regardless, she sets about finding this man and making him love her by being her wonderful self. He already has a girlfriend, but obviously she is all wrong for him. This is pure romance with only a tiny bit of conflict that took my mind off the thing.

Note: before I watched this, I began The Cooler with Bill Macy and Alec Baldwin, a Vegas/mobster type movie, but also a love story (Macy and a waitress) that looked gritty and interesting at first. After about 20 minutes, the movie choked, which happens occasionally on Prime, and I didn’t care enough to try again.

2. Curb Your Enthusiasm. Completely forgot that S10 had come on, yayyy! Oh, this is a treat. Larry is back in top neurotic, cranky form, and each episode is hilarious in and of itself, yet they’re all loosely connected too. What I love about Curb is they aren’t afraid to be absolutely outrageous to the extreme. You simply can’t predict the ridiculousness that will saturate the writing and dialogue. My favorite may have been Adolph the dog, but it’s really hard to choose. I highly recommend this to anyone with a sense of the absurd (and if you don’t mind liberal use of the F-word).

Bitmoji remote

3. Brittany Runs A Marathon. This is based on a true story. It stars Jillian Bell and is written and directed by Paul Downs Colaizzo. I liked it at first because it was fresh with characters not in the normal mold. But when it became clear that I was to root for a romance between our heroine and some homeless dipsh!t, I lost interest. I began reading stuff on my phone halfway through… though I did tune in again at the end to cheer her on in the marathon. I can’t really recommend the movie though.

4. Prescription for Love. This is another romance directed by Brian Brough ~ I assume it was recommended to me because I watched Timeless Love. But while Timeless Love was sweet, Rx was terrible. Absolutely unwatchable. In fact, I turned it off around a third in. Rx is one of those modern “Cinderella” remakes, supposedly, except it wasn’t in the slightest.

Rx is about a nice nurse (Claire), played by Jillian Murray, who has a mean supervisor, but she has a good life otherwise. While dressed up to see her friend perform in Swan Lake, Claire gets trapped in an elevator with a handsome, charming doctor (Luke), played by Trevor Donovan. They get rescued and fail to exchange contact info; when they meet again at work, he doesn’t recognize her, which is so dumb because she doesn’t look any different! Luke assumes Claire is flirting with him like the other nurses are and gets all grumpy, then tries to apologize and screws that up too. He says he’s “interested in someone else,” which we know refers to the girl from the elevator, but she’s RIGHT THERE. There is just no reason why Luke shouldn’t recognize Claire. Is there some weird prejudice that nurses can’t go to the ballet? I don’t get it. Anyway, instead I put on…

5. Life Itself. This movie killed me. I cried all the way through ~ I don’t mean a single elegant tear rolled down my cheek… no, I literally sobbed. Maybe I should have saved it for a less fragile time when my nerves weren’t so jangled up already. But too late! What’s weird is that some days, for hours and hours, I feel almost numb from this isolation. I just freaking persevere. Hey, it’s mid-April. We’re doing it. We’re getting through it. Maybe things, for most of us, will be all right. I don’t know. Yet, I started watching this film and… blammo!

It’s hard to begin talking about Life Itself without giving anything away. The whole thing is about plot twists. It’s a writer’s movie, which explains why critics hated it. They always scorn writers’ movies. They despised Alex & Emma, which was clever and charming. Life Itself is primarily about unreliable narration. How do you know what really happened? The story is as only as true as the memory of the storyteller. When Will is telling Abby’s story to Cait, we aren’t sure what to believe. Can we trust Will when we know he’s mentally ill? Even if he is relaying the story accurately, what about Abby? How do we know she told the truth to Will? I find these sorts of dilemmas fascinating.

Life Itself is about stories layered within stories and on top of stories ~ it is a tragic yet beautiful layer cake of stories. It’s full of despair, yet love shines through too. You think you can’t bear any more and then… it’s good again. I loved this movie so much I wanted to stay up forever and write my own stories. That’s how I feel when I watch or read something that resonates with me on a deep emotional level.

I highly recommend it if you’re doing okay right now and won’t be triggered by death. I’ll be doing more movie reviews soon and am in the middle of a loooooong Stephen King novel, which is why my book reviews have stalled.

Distance Bitmoji

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Images credited to Bitmoji..

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

PFF45: A2Z

Friday Flashback

Welcome to Paula’s Friday Flashback! This is a challenge begun by Fandango and it’s fun to see what we posted back when (as well as the comments). The post below is a reblog of a post I made exactly one year ago. I can’t resist saying something about this post, given that I’m doing A2Z again. I have indeed done a specific theme (games) with planned and scheduled posts. But the difference is… I am ignoring the main site. I am reading my regular feed, some of which contains bloggers also doing A2Z, and not actively seeking new followers and blogs to read. Thus, I feel much less stressed. Also, I must have chosen a better topic because I’m receiving many more comments! 😍

A2Z Observations

We’re 10 days into April now, marking a third of the journey through my first A2Z bloggery challenge. Now, to be honest, I didn’t join in to get motivated to blog daily, since I do that already. I joined because I thought it would be fun to have a daily themed post.

Well, it’s not. 😱

Yes. Sacrilege. Allow me to pontificate. It’s a burden to write the posts that I’ve planned out on my list. It feels like work, bleh. It’s not fun like the other posts are, the genre challenges, the impulsive poetry, etc.

Another issue is that people aren’t responding to the romance novel reviews much, except to drop likes. I thought I had more romance readers here who would be interested in these books. Guess not. Maybe if I reviewed something “rapey” like The Flame and the Flower I’d get a conversation going haha.

But people are responding to the romantic comedy movie reviews, so I’m modifying my list to include more movies and fewer books, except for the reviews I’ve already scheduled. I’d rather go for the reliable over the uncertain, and it makes me a little sad to have a post with likes and no comments. Dunno why people can’t extrapolate things I say about romance novels into general discussions about other books and writing too, but like whatever. We’ll just focus on movies. 🙄

Further, with my regular newsfeed still overflowing with favorite bloggers posting great stuff, I don’t have time to wander to the A2Z page and check out new peeps. I’m already much too busy with blogging and working and everything else. That “make connections” part of A2Z is a bust for me, unfortunately. I don’t know how I used to have any spare time. Where did it go?

I think in the future if I do A2Z again it will be with a much more casual approach, not a theme/list. This feels way too much like actual work. 😝

/end reblog

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Image from Pexels.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.