Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Movies We're Watching

We make a real effort to see each of the five Best Picture nominees before the Academy Awards show, scheduled for February 22 on ABC. So far, we've seen Doubt and Slumdog Millionaire, which earned 10 Oscar nominations. Both were excellent, but we're giving Slumdog Millionaire the Oscar "thumbs up" because of the film's fresh, novel approach to structure.

Netflix also gives us a wonderful opportunity to see some interesting foreign films; we just finished watching Paris, Je T'aime, a collection of twenty, 5-minute films about the City of Lights. Numerous writers, directors and actors present a variety of styles, subject matter and locations in Paris, which Doug and I visited in the fall of 2005. The Coen Brothers and Wes Craven were true to their craft; Gena Rowlands was featured in a very special romantic vignette about "mature" love. The 5-minute "young" love vignette filmed in the Pere Lachaise Cemetery was interesting, especially because Doug and I spent a morning there.

Museum visits are a highlight of our fall trips, and an afternoon at the Musee d'Orsay, which displays collections of art from the period 1848-1914, was very interesting. In particular, we found this sculpture by Camille Claudel, who started working in Rodin's workshop around 1884, quite unique. The museum was originally the Orsay railway station, built for the Universal Exhibition of 1900.

Touring the Catacombs was honestly quite interesting, but Doug couldn't persuade me to visit the sewers of Paris!

One of many special dinners at an outdoor cafe near the Ile Saint-Louis, where we stayed while visiting Paris.

A trip to the top of the Eiffel Tower, built for the 1889 International Exhibition of Paris, is spectacular - regardless of the weather.

(blog entries by Heidi Hutson)

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