Tis the season for watching movies. We rarely go to see movies in the theater, and although we have a Netflix subscription, we don't watch all that many movies at home either. This is mostly because of me, and my general dislike of the movie form, I will admit. But during the holidays, I somehow become far more open to movies, at home and in the theater. So, over Thanksgiving we went to see Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1, and over this past long holiday weekend, we saw two movies that I want to recommend.
The first was a DVD we got from Netflix - Stranger Than Fiction. A man begins to hear a voice in his head, narrating his every move, and it says he is going to die soon. At the same time, in the same city, an author is trying to get over her writer's block and figure out how to kill her character (the death of the main character being her trademark stylist flourish). It stars Will Ferrell, who I usually cannot stand but here quite liked, Emma Thompson, Queen Latifah, Maggie Gyllenhaal, and Dustin Hoffman, as a hilarious over-worked literature professor (he is head faculty life guard - ha!). I don't know why this movie didn't make more noise when it came out in 2006 - it did get nominated for Golden Globes, but otherwise, poof. Anyway, rent it, you will probably enjoy it greatly.
The second movie we saw this weekend was True Grit, the new re-make by the Coen brothers. Again, I don't really like the Coen brothers (or at least, I think I don't. I have enjoyed several of their movies, but didn't like Fargo, which is probably where that idea comes from) but this movie was really, really good. The music was just the right kind of Western music, the actress playing the main character was wonderful, and Jeff Bridges and Matt Damon were also really good. Now I have to go read the novel - written by an Arkansan, and set partially in Arkansas!