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Stuff. Random.

My mum's in town for a few weeks over Christmas, and we've been alternating between braving the cold and going out to the general attractions of Chicago, and sitting in and watching movies and shows and doing cryptic crossword puzzles (that's more Mum than me, though; I get cranky at them more than anything). In consequence, I've had plenty of thoughts, a couple of bunnies, and no time to write anything. We're sitting here watching the Pride & Prejudice movie, and so here's a chance to ramble randomly for a bit. It's been too quiet around here for too long, and I'm due a Friday or two.

Random rambling with no real spoilers for any of it....


Having – like many – fallen in love with the BBC Pride & Prejudice miniseries as a teen (and, like most obsessive teens, able to quote along with the entire show), I was – like many – less than impressed with the movie. It's been a while, though, and while I still enjoy P&P (who doesn't?), I'm no longer caught up by it; the period-drama leading man section of my heart was pretty much stolen by Mr Thornton of North & South, especially once he was played by Richard Armitage.

So with several years of distance, I'm watching this movie (whoops, there goes the sunrise bit ... that was rather sweetly done, certainly), and it struck me that if you don't go into it expecting Pride & Prejudice, but just a period romance inspired by the book, it's quite fun. And having kind of lost interest in Colin Firth, I don't really mind Matthew Macfayden as Darcy. He makes the brooding thing work for him, although that does seem to be more of a concession to the current hero mould than any kind of characterization you can get from the source. Then again, the whole thing is like that. I've got issues with the hair all around, but I like the frocks and coats, and it's a bouyant little flick. I mean, while I'm still livid (livid, I tell you!) with the way they portrayed Bingley (he is NOT a bouffant-haired dithering idiot!), I loved that they finally made Wickham someone you'd actually rawr at, rather than a slimey weasel that starts making you doubt Lizzie's intelligence or female intuition or something. Bride & Prejudice did the same thing with Wickham, although you cannot possibly go wrong with Martin Henderson as a modern Darcy, either. Yes, please on all counts.

So I guess that would make Pride & Prejudice a Movie I Like But it's not really Pride & Prejudice. Or possibly a Movie I Like But most would disagree. Anyway.


Speaking of Colin Firth, we also went to see The King's Speech, and he, and it, totally blew me away. It is both brilliant and delightful. I was not expecting to enjoy it nearly so much, but with Firth playing every layer of a deeply complex character superbly well, matched by a masterfully playful Geoffery Rush, I've run out of adjectives. What really allows connection, between both them and the audience, is the humour they tease out of their characters. Without it, you really couldn't follow them. And to cap it off, there is a truly sublime streak of expletives in it (earning the R rating here in the States) which is thoroughly earned and material to the story. For those who like period dramas, there's plenty of that kind of icing, but it really is just a beautifully made character-driven story that just happens to be set in the '30s and '40s.

It's definitely a good, strong showing in category: ... huh, and has just an edge in the wheeee! territory. Two thumbs up, and if you're looking for something to watch over the holidays, give this one a go.


Oh, and, yes, I got around to watching the Leverage finales. They were a lot better than most of S3 (they talk about off-speed episodes, but this felt like an off-speed season), and have stirred up some of the creative currents, although I feel like I need a little more nudging to really re-engage my interest in writing anything much. I'm really hoping they get back in this stride properly next season, because I love this show, and I don't want to be bored watching it any more. Then again, if I go back and rewatch the Eliot bits like a good little fangirl (haven't, though; only once through on both ... and probably won't rewatch any time soon, either), I might get in the writing mood. And since my Leverage meta is fodder for my fic more than anything I want to chat about here, that's all I have to say about that.


Also got around (eventually) to watching SPN 6.10 and 6.11. After witnessing something of the blast radius of the lj wanksplosion that happened around 6.10, I gotta say, the whole scene seemed rather dwarfed by the fuss surrounding it. But that's how it usually seems to go. The only thing I would have added to the furor was hey guys, notice that Show's saying that it's the DEMONS that derive enjoyment from it – so even if SHOW isn't saying it outright, I'm willing to: maybe getting jollies from entertaining this stuff, even in imagination, it is something you should think about a little?... Because that would have been Fun. Also because although shame can be manipulated and abused, functioning correctly it serves an actual important purpose. Much like pain, that. Bodies are in a lot of trouble when you deaden everything exept the pleasure sensors, and that metaphor can finish drawing itself.

Meanwhile, I'm just happy to go into the hiatus with Sammy where he is. And I totally grok the Death character, who is, urbanely and with a minimum of fuss, stepping into the God-shaped hole left in the narrative by the last two seasons. And mini fic ideas are fizzling through my neurons like bioluminescence being pelted by tipsy pebble-tossing enthusiasts (I feel like the more tired I get, the more esoteric, with Pratchettarian pretensions, my figures of speech become). So there's that. They might even get written, if I stumble across the right prompts. Maybe.

Oh, and – The Beatles are on iTunes? *immediately and finally adds Hey Jude to SPN playlist*


Oh, and, rewatched Die Hard 4, and went out to see RED with my mum, and Bruce Willis is one fine older gentleman. John Malkovitch made off with the movie for the most part, but it was a pretty lightweight piece of work to nick off with, so no gold star for him for that. Mum thinks Bruce had his nose done, but I can't figure out why anyone would choose that shape, no matter how sexy it turned out to be (and how). Also she says that Julian McMahon definitely takes after his father (who was Prime Minister of Australia, once upon a time). That was before my time, so I wouldn't know, but I'll take her word for it. But Karl Urban? NGHN. That is all.

Oh, no, wait, that wasn't all. Die Hard 4. Fun and ridiculous mayhem that it is, man do I love Timothy Olyphant in this one. I've actually never seen DH2, and don't intend to, but the series really did a good job on substantial bad guys to anchor the story. I mean, by now McClane is an everyman force of nature, so no matter who you match up to him, you know they stand no chance; Alan Rickman and Jeremy Irons both gave him formidable opponents, but by the time this one rolled around, the bad guy was only ever going to be there to service the story (and who, I noticed, directly killed not one person and shot only one, and that in the leg – of course, his actions led indirectly to plenty of deaths and he ordered quite a few more – as opposed to McClane who romped around killing people all over the place).

And yet. Not to be all Draco In Leather Pants-ing here (possible for each villain, given who plays them), Thomas Gabriel is interesting. And Olyphant focuses all his inherent intensity into him, giving Gabriel a mesmerizing, viperous quality that begs for more screentime. In my head, he's revived and stitched up (if McClane can shuffle around and have touching conversations with people with a bullet hole through his upper chest and excessive sleep deprivation in this universe, damnit, Gabriel can survive one shot to the chest), and ... well, maybe there'll be fic, even if I'm probably the only one who's interested. Knowing me, it'll probably end up being a conversation of some kind.

Okay, now Mum's wrestling with the schnitzel, I'd better go. Hope everyone's break is meaningful and restful.

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