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Saturday, July 31, 2010

Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac - books on film

Yuya Tegoshis is the new "Will" in Gabrielle Zevin's  Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac. She wrote the book for her wonderful story about Will and Naomi. Except in this Japanese/American movie, it was best to preserve a Japanese feel to Will's character so he was renamed Mirai Hasegawa.

It's a sensitive story about human identity. Zevin gives us high-school junior Naomi who conks her head. Unfortunately, she can't remember anything that happened since sixth grade. Naturally, she is mystified and startled by evidence of her present life, from the birth-control pills in her bedside table to her parents' big split. Eventually, the memories return, leaving Naomi questioning the basis of a new, intense romance, and wondering which of her two lives, present or former, represents her most authentic self. The question remains - If the past were a blank slate, what would you become? Does the search for one's truest identity necessarily mean rejecting all that has gone before? Of course, her new memories are with Will aka Mirai.

Many a reader have fallen in love with Zevin's characters from this book.

Zevin wrote the screenplay.

The movie also has Emma Roberts in the movie too. But she is not Naomi. Emma Roberts is Alice in the movie. Naomi is played by Maki Horikita. This movie is being released in Japan first, but will later be dubbed in English and released in a America.

Hopefully, this movie will get the recognition it deserves. Its one to look for. An amazing book now on film. Hopefully soon in the states, too.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Aunt Debbie's pickles

 Or 9 day pickles in 24 hrs.

6 cups thinly sliced cucumbers
2 cups finely chopped onions
1 1/2 c. sugar
1 1/2 c. dark vinegar
1/2 t. salt
1/2 t. mustard seed
1/2 t. celery seed
1/2 t. ground turmeric


In a medium sauce pan add sugar, vinegar and your seasonings. Bring to a boil. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Pour over cucumber mixture. Stir. Cover tightly. Refrigerate for 24 hours. Keep pickles in fridge. Enjoy.

Honestly, these have to be the best homemade pickles I've ever tasted. They are sweet yet sour too. Perhaps the turmeric is the secret. But while I was at Aunt Debbie's, she had an overload of cucumbers. Of course, she gave us a sack full for the ride home and this recipe. I thought I'd share it with you.

Clive and I just got finished making this recipe. I so hope they turn out because I'd kind of like to experiment with zucchini next. Yeah, she gave us plenty of those too.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Cyrus - movie review

For starter don't go in thinking this is an Apataw movie. Because its not. Its brought to you by Mark & Jay Duplass who have hit it off at Sundance before with movies like The Puffy Chair and  Baghead. And though, you might think it a comedy, it really isn't.

Its a quirky little film about real men. I suppose. John C. Reilly is the lonely guy who still hasn't bounced back, 7 years after his divorce while his ex Carolyn Keener who is still there to mother him, even if she has an up coming wedding. If its the last thing she does before tieing the knot is hopefully, hooking up her her offbeat ex with someone at a party.

Naturally, John isn't much good at conversation or a party. And then he meets unconventional Molly (Marisa Tomemi). Needless to say, one thing leads to another from just one silly conversation and well, you've got a couple. But he soon feels she's hiding something from him. And she is, its her 20-something year old son, Cyrus, Jonah Hill. Granted, Cyrus has had quite a sheltered life. Home-schooled, possibly breast-fed longer than the usual child. But he just might be a little devious when he figures out John is in the picture now.

This is definitely a serious thing for Jonah Hill. I've never seen him quite like this. And well, he was unusual, quirky and dangerously alluring. I'm glad he chose this film.

If you really look at the layers of this film, possibly John and Cyrus are a lot a like. John is still a part of his ex-wife's life. He still needs her. And perhaps Cyrus is a bit passive aggressive for his own good, but he still needs his Mom too.

I liked that Molly comes to the realization about Cyrus. Yet they are quite stuck. As life is. Because, truth is, family cares about one another. And life is never quite perfect.

The movie has its surreal moments yet not too shocking. Just the way life is. Something happens, and we find a way to cope. Figure a way to put the pieces together even if something might be missing. Making do with what life hands you.

Honestly, you won't be bored. But it is slyly a real drama about real people and the beauty that is possibly over-looked because we only want whats shiny and new. Just give Jonah Hill a chance. He's more than just a thirty second laugh.

Friday, July 23, 2010

magic wands - music

I might not have known about this band if it hadn't been for HAPPYTOWN. There Teenage Love might be a one hit wonder that never makes it to the charts, but they definitely set the mood for that sexy moment for the tormented love/ lust of Henley and Greggy. Bad girls and bad boys falling into something a lot like love. So naturally, I had to to find this song to buy. Its so hypnotic. It just might make you want to find the nearest pole and have a dance with it.

Its been said The Magic Wands, AKA Chris and Dexy Valentine, is like the plotline of some lost American literary classic. The first time the two of them met was for five minutes outside a gig in Hollywood in 2006 when Chris was visiting Los Angeles for the weekend. A year later and back in Nashville, Chris found a song on MySpace that he listened to repeatedly called ‘Teenage Love’. When he discovered it was a song by Dexy he sent her a message.

They began to collaborate over the Internet on a song Chris wrote to Dexys called "Kiss Me Dead" and then he  flew to Los Angeles to help her pack up her old Mercedes Benz for a trip over land.

The Magic Wands spent six months in NYC, Nashville and Los Angeles writing and recording the tracks that made their debut album. Recently they toured with Black Kids and Virgins. They've toured with the Raconteurs, The Breeders as well as The Black Keys and played Lollapalooza and toured in the UK.
They have also opened for the The Kills and The Horrors. Hopefully, their tunes will be on more soundtracks as well. They've got the beat for any movie that might want to go American gothic or a Lynch film.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

HUSH HUSH- book review

Just how dark do you like your Angels?

Becca Fitzpatrick brings us high school sophomore Nora Grey, a dedicated student striving for a college scholarship. She lives with her widowed mother in a country farmhouse outside Portland, ME. When Patch, her new biology partner, is suddenly thrust into her life, Nora is both attracted to his charm and put off by his inexplicable awareness of her thoughts. Eventually, she learns that he is a fallen angel who wants to become human. She is susceptible to his control, but other forces are at work as well, and Nora finds herself caught in the middle of dangerous situations and unexplainable events.

The premise of the debut novel is that fallen angels exist and interact with humans on Earth. Only it can get complicated.

Will readers buy it? This supernatural nature of things, Angels? Some might feel this is pure formula. Fitzpatrick writes in a very Stephanie Meyer way. There is a love triangle involved. And just how realistic is it?

Would you be convinced that a mother whose husband has recently been murdered would leave her daughter alone overnight in their home far from the nearest neighbor or that a school counselor would be replaced by someone whose credentials were not checked?

Some of us won't care. Some will find Nora very gullible. Would they find Patch so charming? Well, if Angels are involved, what more could you want. It looks like many are sold on Fitzpatrick's premise. I'm sure we can look for more in this series, soon.

Monday, July 19, 2010

oh so Gordy

OK, I couldn't think of a better title, but it could be Joseph Gordon-Levitt's summer. He's 28 now and last summer well, he did it with 500 days of Summer. Can he score big this summer too?

Well, it helps to get a role in a Christoper Nolan film, Inception with a dream cast at that. He got to practice his French off camera with Marion Cotillard and kiss Ellen Page on screen. Not bad for a summer gig. And of course, what he really does best, showing us just how graceful he is, walking on walls and floating in space. Definitely a film to be proud of.

And then there is Hesher which many of us might not have a chance to grab tickets for, but wait for the DVD instead. But only Joey could show us the many sides of himself in a movie like this one. His co-star is Natalie Portman. His character is somewhat of a loner, but still he burns up the screen in this little indie film. Naturally, Joey is good at making his characters complex.

You can have it either way this summer with Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Indie or blockbuster.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Complicated Intentions Part 3 - Ivy Parker

Tori ran quickly, hoping Gordy wouldn't follow, wouldn't notice where she was going. Tori ran up the old staircase next to a retro wear place and went the back way.

"Good you're home. Where have you been?" Terrence sat on the couch watching TV, playing with the remote.

"I'm just late, that's all."

"The library closes at five on Fridays."

"Yeah, but there's..there's this book sale, you know, I couldn't get out of it." She shook her head pulling back from his hug.

"You smell," Terrence sniffed.

"What?" She backed away further, noticing the long strand of hair on her shoulder. She pulled the strand, let it drift to the floor.

"...like cookies, oatmeal cookies." Terrence smiled.

"Oh, I guess someone brought cookies." Tori examined her blouse a little more closely, wondering if the buttons were all in order. Did she look disheveled? Had she combed her hair? Would he notice anything out of the ordinary? "But I'm hungry. I'm very hungry." She tried a grin.

"Good but, the zucchini might be soggy now."

"That's okay." She saw the plates set on the table. Candles, too. It seemed artificial to go through the motions, but the bread was fresh and in the dim setting, she buttered her roll and started to chew while Terrence served the gooey meal.

"In fact everything might be soggy."

"It looks...GREAT!" She stayed busy with the food.

"How's the library? Did you see that couple, again?"

"What couple?"

"You know the high school girl and that fellow?"

Tori blinked. She had seen the girl briefly. She remembered now. God, I passed by her on the way out. How could I forget that? Tori bit into the buttered roll and chewed slowly.

"I don't think they're a couple. I was wrong." She thought of Gordy's sticky lips touching her skin. She felt goosebumps. Maybe she felt orgasmic, or maybe just sick. Something made her nauseous, but she took a deep breath and tried to smile at Terrence.

"The meal is just great. I didn't really deserve this. I really didn't. Why did you go to all this trouble?" Tori tried to focus on Terrence.

"Because I love you." It sounded like a language she couldn't comprehend.

She heard his words, but then she didn't want to hear them. She shook her head, no.

Tori pushed her plate away wiped her mouth with her napkin.

"Don't do this. Really. You shouldn't do this." She rubbed her throat.

"I know, who'd thought, you and me, but it's true. I love you, Tori." His smile made her feel sick.

"We're just friends, Terrence. You have girlfriends. I mean you...did. Everything was going okay. Wasn't it? We talk, we...."

"Tori, this is old news." She looked into his spacey eyes, wondering if he ever exactly knew what she was talking about.

"Wait." He was making her nervous. She didn't want to hear it. She didn't want to know what a great couple they made. She didn't want to hear she was everything he was searching for. None of it was true. "Look." She flashed the library card in front of his face. "See what I found? It's a sign, Terrence. A sign. It's Paul Auster's library card."

"Who in the hell is Paul Auster?"

"You don't know who Paul Auster is?" He wouldn't. Terrence didn't read books. He only went to college one semester. What did I expect, she thought. "He's, he's great. Haven't you heard of the New York Triolgy?City of Glass? A music of chance? Smoke? Leviathan? He's the last existentialist, Terrence."

Tori said, noting her enthusiasm was more high strung than she anticipated.

"What's that got to do with us?"

"It's just more clear to me that...that I need to wait, you know, to think what I really want from a relationship. I need someone like Auster, who can understand me."

"Understand you? What does that mean? Only an existentialist or who ever in the hell he is ...can understand you?" He sounded bitter.

"It's just. I want you to be happy. I do. I just don't think I can make you happy, Terrence." She got up, turned away so she wouldn't have to watch him.

"But, what about that time, us?" She flinched when he touched her. She looked at him out of the corner of her eye.

Her frown grew into tears. This was awful, she thought. Gordy came to mind. The smell of his sweat still on her.

She took a deep breath. His scent. She couldn't avoid it. It was with her. She was sure it would be with her tomorrow and the next day.

"It really wasn't sex," she said. She wondered for a moment who she was talking to and what was she really talking about. "We're friends, Terrence. That's all."

"What? What about New Year's Eve? Huh, that was- well, you were there." He rubbed his forehead like he was having trouble remembering.

She shook her head, remembering him so bombed out. He talked endlessly about this chick he had met at an amusement park last summer when he wanted to be a carnie. Tori remembered him talking about Leann Rhimes. It had been boring, but she listened, drank the wine and dozed off in his arms.

"Terrence, we slept together! That was all. I fell asleep."

"No, no...it was more than that, and you know it."

"You were dreaming. You had to be dreaming." She wanted to spit in anger. "Quit holding on to something there never was! Just forget it, Terrence! Forget it!"

"No, I can't. It was special. It was you." He sounded like a child to her. Like she was his first.

Tori raked her fingers through her stringy hair.

"Terrence, please, don't do this. I'm not what you want. Really, I'm not. I'm ..I'm foolish, I'm self-centered. I'm a bitch. I'm not even pretty." She tugged at her collar.

"Don't talk like that."

She hated it when he wouldn't take his eyes off her. Her eyes watered. She rubbed her runny nose.

"Go, please. Please. Go! I can't- I can't be what you want me to be. I just can't, not now. You're too nice to me. You need someone who wants to be nice to you. Who wants what you want. And I don't know what I want, Terrence."

She sank into the couch.

"This is about that old guy, isn't it? You dropped out of college because of him."

She laughed. That was over. There wasn't that much to the fling. It was a one night stand. She couldn't remember the details.

"It was just a stupid ass thing. I do a lot of stupid ass things." She grinned for a moment, wiping her nose. He handed her a napkin, and she blew her nose hard.

"Yeah, but he was your father's best friend."

"I don't want to talk about that."

"You used to."

"See how much you know about me? You know too much. It doesn't help, Terrence. It doesn't help."

"Tori, you can't even go home. You say they don't want to see you."

"They don't." She shook her head and rubbed her nose with the napkin. It smelled faintly of garlic. "I don't want to see anybody right now, Terrence. I've decided I'm going to wait for Paul Auster."

"Wait for him?"

"There's a chance we'll meet." She liked the hope in the words.

"Then what? Are you crazy?"

"No, something like this'll stop me from doing something crazy. I'm tried of doing crazy things, Terrence." She stared at the library card, thinking of Gordy. Even that was crazy and selfish. Paul Auster would be her religion.

When she looked up, she saw him staring at her. His jaw was tight. She knew he was angry. He tore the library card from her hand and pushed her down on the couch.

"You know I'm the best thing that ever happened to you." His forehead almost touched hers.

"Don't do anything crazy, Terrence."

He sighed. "Damn, you make me so mad."

She thought he was going to kiss her on the lips, but he didn't. His fingers touched her hair.

"All that touchy, feely stuff doesn't count, huh?"

She cringed. She couldn't say it was something to pass the time, something she needed. It was true, but she couldn't admit it.

"Everything counts just as much as nothing counts." She stared into his eyes.

He almost laughed. "I wish I knew what in hell you were talking about."

His weight pushed against her. She felt him between her thighs. He gnawed at her lips. She squirmed.

She kicked back, fought with her arms, pushing him away, but he was still on top of her, pushing down, pressing her against the couch.

"Stop." Her cry was a whisper and then she yelled, "STOP, TERRENCE!" Her teeth clench, her fist tight. Her blouse ripped. Her hair fell in her eyes, and she felt his sweat. But she kept kicking, crawling, fumbling away. Finally, he stopped.

Her body trembled. Tori tried to catch her breath. Staring at him, she wondered what kind of initiation this was? Were they enemies now?

She crossed her arms and didn't say a word. Finally she turned away. Her fingers shook as she picked up the library card from the floor. She focused on the name, Paul Auster. She found comfort in the name. When she looked back, Terrence was gone.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Complicated Intentions Part 2. -by Ivy Parker

Tori worked out of town, in a suburb. If it hadn't been for the free apartment in her aunt's building in the Old Market, Tori would have left long ago. It was funny how she felt like someone else in the suburb. There was something soothing about ambiguity. However, she was just a library clerk.

There were smiles for little kids, walks with old men to find books on spirituality, and the usual patronage. Fines were a different matter.

Tori shrugged her way through work and did her best to keep busy, checking in books.

She moved in a rhythm, unstuffing cards from books, stacking them in fiction, nonfiction, juvenile and easy readers. She checked them through at a steady pace. One after another from the stack to the shelf for the shelver to roll in a cart to the other end of the library.

A library card dropped out of a fiction book, The Best American Mystery Short Stories of 1996. Tori stooped, then looked to the side to see if the shelver was watching.

Gordy was watching. She sensed it. Amazingly, she found the feeling intriguing.

She sighed, picked up the card and stared blankly at the name.

"Paul Auster." She smiled, feeling a soothing magic in the name.

"He's an existentialist, isn't he?" Gordy asked leaning over her shoulder.

She shook the feeling that Gordy was invisible, and only appeared when he wanted.

"I guess, but this can't be the same Paul Auster." She couldn't imagine the real author out here in the Midwest.

"What if it is?"

"Yeah, right. I don't think so." Light with laughter, she almost felt dizzy, maybe crazy in love.

"Well, let's see what he's checked out." Gordy took the card and zapped the barcode. He brought up the list of books on the computer.

"Looks like Mr. Auster has some fines."

"Maybe he's still in the building." Tori looked around, trying to imagine what Paul Auster looked like. She saw his picture before, but a picture and in person were two different things.

"Yeah, well, I doubt it. He's not going to pay. Who'd pay fifty dollars in fines?"


"He didn't check out any of his books. There's one on Consumer Reports," Gordy pointed out.

Tori brushed her fingers through her chin length hair. She stared at Gordy's delicate fingers. She never thought of him doing anything but hiding behind his long wavy hair, slipping from his ponytail. She took the card back.

"You going to put it in lost cards?"

"Maybe." She wanted to pay the fines and keep the card for herself. "Don't worry about it."

"I won't. Better get busy." His lips curved. When he smiled, she wondered if it was an invitation to visit him in the shelves. Magic, she assumed. She sighed, anything could happen.

I'm holding Paul Auster's library card, she said to herself with satisfaction; it was a fine day. She watched Gordy walk away with a cart of books. She slipped the card in her hip pocket.

It was almost four. She could leave before five. She hated the library five o'clock rush. She was out the door by four. She hesitated for a moment. Terrence.

Tori couldn't shake her dread.

And then it happened. She stumbled into Gordy as he pushed against the door.

"You're in a hurry?" he asked. His lips parted. She thought she heard him say something else, but there was no time. Terrence was waiting for her.

"Yeah, well..." She shrugged not wanting to explain, but the sensation halted her. Gordy's magic didn't lurk in the library shelves. She imagined leaning against a shelf, him kissing her, books falling. Something connected. It seemed impossible to walk away.

Hurrying down the steps toward the parking lot, she felt his hand pull her back before she tumbled down the cement.

"Slow down."

Her breath caught as she looked up at him. His lips moved but she only heard her heart beat.

He blinked and everything seemed to slow, each step they took away from the library took longer and longer.

Before she realized it, she was in the front seat of his old Gremlin.

Her eyes felt heavy. His plush lips moved and when he kissed her, it felt like a warm sleep. She could breath again. Laughter came over her. He drove with one hand and held her with the other. She watched the passing cars, heard a car horn, but he drove into the traffic, past the stop light, past a shopping center toward a residential area.

In minutes they were in his parents driveway and skipping up the steps to his garage apartment.

It was too late to think about Terrence, she sighed, looking at the narrow kitchen stacked with dirty dishes. The unmade bed and dirty underwear and old newspapers sprawled along the floor.

Gordy peeled back what was on the bed, she heard glass crack, but it didn't matter.

"I don't think we should be friends anymore." He grabbed the collar of her blouse and started to unbutton it.

"Nobody ever said that to me before." She shook her head. Her hair swirled around her face.

He smiled at her and pulled her close. She was lulled by his kiss and found herself undressed in seconds.

"I think-" But she could only laugh in between his heavy kisses.

"Don't think." And she didn't. They twisted in the crumbs on the bed.

He still has on his glasses, she thought, pulling them from his face, but he pushed them back on.

"No, I want to see you."

When he relaxed and fell to his side, his skin was pink with sweat. She settled back against the pillow. Her body was at peace. Maybe he'd given her a part of his magic. It was a peace, but a strength she could hardly control.

Her lashes quivered. Tori took a deep breath and absorbed the calm.

When she awoke, she looked at her watch.

"Oh, my God, it's after six!" But she felt too drained to move.

"What's wrong with that?" His hands touched her face.

"I missed the bus."

"I'll drive you home." He pulled her into his arms and she relaxed a little.

Terrence. Her eyes widened. She tensed, rubbing her hand against her dry lips. Sweat poured from her face. Dinner was waiting.

"I need to go now, but..but just drop me off, okay?" It would have to work.

It had to, she thought.

"Okay, if you say so." He kissed her but she was afraid to stay. It would start all over.


It was a quiet ride home. She sat next to the window and watched the street lights. It seemed very sad now. Her sinuses started to congest and she wasn't sure if she was allergic to the city or missed his apartment.

"You're all right, aren't you?" She felt his hand on her back. Her body tensed. There was no time to relax.

Her smile was brief. She felt his hand reach for her and she took his hand, kissed it. She missed him already and she wasn't even out of the car.

"Everything's going to work out." But she couldn't quite shake the feeling that a storm was brewing. His touch was hot, but she felt like ice.

"You'll call me?"



"I don't know." She shook her head. "I'll think about it." He stopped at a stoplight. She opened the door. "I should go. I really have to go."

"When can I see you? Can I come over?"

"Sometime..soon..okay." She tried to smile, and slammed the door shut. The light was green, but she knew he didn't want to leave.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Complicated Intentions Part. 1 -By Ivy Parker

She examined her ivory face in the mirror while she stroked the dry blush on her eyelids. Her honey-colored hair fell around her face. Tori didn't want to look too close. The less she looked, the more she could kid herself that she was low maintenance. Besides, the fact remained, her nose was too big.

"What are you trying to say? They were together, but they weren't together?" Terrence asked from where he leaned on the bathroom doorway, drying his hands on a cup towel.

He cleaned the kitchen, she thought. Well, after all, he's cooking supper tonight. He needs a place to call home.

"It's complicated." Tori looked at him. "Kind of like us."


"Nothing." She put her blush back in the medicine cabinet and eyelined her dark round eyes. "Look, I just saw her at the library, and she was alone. She was using the Internet. She got off on time and walked away.Then this old guy--"

"How old?"

"I don't know, at least forty. She was young. Like high school young."

"Maybe he was her dad?"

"It couldn't be her dad. He didn't look like the 'dad' type."

"You think they're having an affair?"

"I don't know. At the library?" She rolled her eyes.

"Maybe you'll see them again."

"Maybe." She put her handbag over her shoulder. "What can I expect in the food department when I come home?"

"Spaghetti sound okay?"


"I got some lettuce."

"Okay, I'll pick up some tomatoes or something on the way home."

"No, I'm making you dinner. Just come home." He looked at her, like maybe she didn't know how to get home from the library.

"I'll be here." But it might be an empty promise. Sometimes, she forgot. It wasn't intentional. It just sort of happened.

He pulled her close and grabbed a quick kiss. She didn't respond.

"Okay," she sighed. His grip was tighter than she wanted. She pushed away. "I got to go." Suddenly she was in a rush to get away.

As soon as she shut the apartment door behind her, all she could think about was how she could get away from him. How would she do it? She couldn't breath around him. He was too good for her. Why can't we just be friends?

He'd worm his way back in somehow. She knew. That lion's mane of his and the skimpy goatee were just deterrents of a fellow who wanted to come off unattached. Tori knew better. All Terrence wanted was a place to keep his cold beer, veg-out and say, "Hey, I love you, Babe."

Tori rolled her eyes and imagined him sprawled out on her couch digging through Fritos and grinning like a sly cat. It gave her the creeps. This was it. Her boyfriend, the couch potato.

A headache steeped behind her eyes. Somehow she had to stop this before it became permanent.

She took the bus, stepped over the trash, imagining stepping over Terrence, crushing Terrence, chunking Terrence into the sewer. She believed it now. She hated him.

Monday, July 5, 2010

movies I like to revisit ever so often

OK, usually, it has to be something special to keep in my library of dvds. Granted, most are used or some I've recorded off IFC. But they make me smile when I find them, digging around in my closet.

1. THE UNBELIEVABLE TRUTH. For starters its a Hal Hartley film. And its either you get him or don't. And I somehow got this film. Its rather indie with a really young Adreinne Shelly who's Audrey. Shelly went on to direct WAITRESS and I feel she got much of her craft and timing with the director Hartley. She was in a few of his other films. But she plays Audrey who just knows the world might blow up any second. She lives in Long Island and has a boyfriend she can't stand, a dad who's a bit over powering, but he only wants his daughter to be rich. In comes in Josh Hutton played by a very awesome Robert John Burke who was in a lot of Hartley films too. You might know him now as somebody's Dad on Gossip Girl. Anyway, this lone dude all in black is so mysterious. He gets questions. "Are you a priest or something?" And Audrey is smitten and he's hardly said a word to her. Good, real New York shoving matches. This film catches a glimpse of what the world actually was in the neighborhood at that time.

2.NOWHERE. James Duvall is in his element in this film. If only he could have been a real teen idol. But he wasn't. Yet, most of young Hollyood from 1997 was in this flick. Christine Applegate, Ryan Phillipe, Heather Graham, Debbie Mazar, Jordan Ladd, Rachel True...to name a few. Its sexy, psychodic, demented and so much more of a trip that you just wish was more. And there is Nathan Bexton, the ultimate boyfriend that might have been. But Duvall's character can't decide. Does he stick with his girl who has a thousand boyfriends or try something amazing with this new dude who's just breath taking. And if that isn't enough, well, he thinks aliens are after his friends. Then there is a minister on the TV that has gone bonkers. Hook ups, crashes, and kick the can included. Its one of Gregg Akari's finest moments on film of the doomed generation.

3.GO. Another film with little known actor Nathan Bexton. This is of course another sort of drug induced film that came out in 1999. Its got a sweet cast presented in an almost Pulp Fiction style. Breaking the story into three parts. It starts out with Sarah Polley's Ronna who is trying to make the rent. She gets it by taking Brit co-worker's shift. Of course, she's already worked 14 hours. While she's trying to do his drug dealing as well when his locals come around, Simon is off to Vegas. Which is an entire different story. You have Tim Olyphant as the not so nice guy where Simon gets his stuff from..which leads us to a few more of Ronna's co-workers getting into the action along with gay (acting detective duo) Jay Mahr and Scott Wolf in a real sting operation. Naturally, they have a few faults of their own, cheating on each other. Its a crazy rave time with Katie Holmes along for the ride. Directed by Doug Liman who also did Swingers.

4.BRICK. So this might have been the film that made me fall totally in love with Joseph Gordon Levitts. This is truly Rian Johnson's best film. Its written in a film noir murder mystery featuring contemporary high school students who talk and behave like 1940's-style gangsters. That said, you are probably thinking, 'are you kidding me?' It works. Levitts gets so beaten up in this one. His character is trying to find out what happened to his ex-girlfriend. Sweet. Sad. Uniquely acted. I could watch this one again and again. It came out in 2005.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

boys of summer

Where to start....

hmmmmm....well, you know how it is. Summer TV. Its just there. You don't have to like it. Really. Right? And then someone comes along and catches your eye. Like....

Keegan Allen who we absolutely know nothing about. He has but one credit other than being Toby Cavanaugh the bad boy brother who may or may not be evil on Pretty Little Liars. Before this he was in something way back in 2002 as some shop keeper's son. He has more than just dazzling eyes. He actually reminds me of Soap Actor Roger Howarth who was just a day player on One Life to Live yet made Todd Manning into the anti-hero of all soaps. Maybe Keegan could do the same thing on Pretty Little Liars if given half the chance.

James Preston part of the wolf pack on THE GATES was only spotted as the cute guy on Make it or Break it and an episode of The Forgotten. He's heating things up as the friend trying to help his fellow wolf companions make the transitions of the woods. But then again you might have spotted him in an Abercrombie & Fitch photo spread.

 We must not forget about Michael Bakari Jordan from Friday Night Lights. He is a shining star as the new quarter back, Vince Howard. He got his start in All My Children along the way with lots of other great shows like Without a Trace and Cold Case. He has 2 new projects in the work Pastor Brown and Red Tails. With his acting abilities, this is just the beginning for Michael.

Then there is Shannon Kook-Chun who is Zane on Degrassi as Riley's new boyfriend. He graced us with his yoga moves earlier in the season, but then things got serious between he and Riley. Zane, on the show is openly gay while Riley hasn't decided if he's ready for such a feat yet. He was Xan in a short drama called Verona before joining the cast of Degrassi. He's soon to be in a new short film called 3 Mothers. Other places on TV he's been Cash and Burn, The Border and Being Erica. Even Amanda Seyfried thinks he's kissable.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

you gotta be cool

Chances are you aren't going to spend a fortune on summer clothes. Well, you might just want to check out Hanes' tanks for men. Why?

1. Tagless - there is no itchy tag on the neck of Hanes tank tops
2. Fabrics - oh-so-soft cotton & some blend cotton & polyester for stretch
3. Shape - Hanes men's tank tops will keep their shape wash after wash
4. Breathable - men's tanks are breathable so you won't overheat
5. Sizes - choose your stretchable tanks from sizes S through XL

Simply, these are great to sleep in for starters. Wear them with sleep pants. Or with summer shorts. You could wear a small and a medium together. Or a small and large, perhaps. They are very stretchy and the larger ones are longer and go great with leggins or even as an underdress you can wear a top over them too.  Wear a tight T underneath, even. These are especially great for concerts. I've found they are perfect with my cropped button down short sleeved sweaters I've gotten from Old Navy.

They come cheap. Especially, at Dollar General, Usually, in gray, black and white. Yeah, I'm probably one of the cheapest chicks around. I'm always trying to find a way to wear something different, or make something out of what I already have. I do plenty of thrifting. But there is just something that makes me smile when I put on a Hanes men tank. You know summer has finally arrived.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Elliot Allagash

Simon Rich has finally landed on arrival with a fresh new novel.

Now remember, don't go thinking he's the new J.D. Salinger. He is however a very young writer for Saturday Night Live and he's already won us over with essays in his humorous collections of Free-Range Chickens and Ant Farm.

Here we have a novel about the most unpopular boy at school, Seymour  who's just been dubbed "chunk-style" at the private middle school he goes to in Manhattan. All is a slow boat to China of Seymour's existence until he meets transfer student Elliot Allagash. As it is Elliot is delinquent most days and has high hopes of being kicked out. Only his dad has donated too much money to the school. So he's stuck. And out of amusement, Seymour becomes his project to make Seymour the most popular boy at school.

Its a playful story that's wickedly funny, Elliot Allagash is a tale about all the incredible things that money can buy and some things it can't.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

The Gates - a review

Its like Desperate Housewives has gone vamps.

True, its summer, and possibly the series won't last long. And if you think this is campy, well, you are wrong. You've got some hearty acting going on. Especially, when it comes to Rhona Mitra, who you may remember from Boston Legal. She's perfect as Claire Radcliff, the vampire who's married to a vampire, Luke Mably as Dylan Radcliff. Both have come to the Gates to raise their daughter. Of course, one might wonder if she's really their daughter.

There are lots of mysteries in THE GATES. As in werewolves running amuck and a witch or two just might be at your beckoning call if you need something to help your worries.

Thus you have the Mahon family move in from Chicago. Nick Mahon who is the new police chief (Frank Grillo) as if they'd need one in that community.
Enter Travis Caldwell, as the police chief's son Charlie. As it is, Travis has been a bit player until now on most shows. An episode here and there from Zoey 101 to most recently as Colin on Parenthood. His character is quite interesting as he comes between two werewolves with raging hormones.

Granted, the show is of the supernatural. Its about time Dark Shadows moved to the burbs.  And this show just might be worth watching. I really liked the character development after the first episode. The show is written by Richard Hatem who was the co-executive producer of Supernatural along with Grant Scharbo who wrote for the series The Moutain.