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The Theory of Everything {A Brief Review}

I know we are a little behind the times, but over the weekend we rented The Theory of Everything. And it was wonderful. I mean, Eddie Redmayne was beyond exceptional. And not just how uncanny his resemblance to young Stephen Hawking is, but how he captured his mannerisms and characteristics. I mean, check this out:

The actress playing his wife, Felicity Jones, was also excellent. I felt like we really understood what they went through together, and how hard they each tried to keep life as normal as possible.

If you’re looking for a movie this weekend, check this one out…but only if you’re in the mood for something serious. I wouldn’t call it sad by any means, but serious? Yes. Definitely. Serious, and beautiful. Enjoy!

 

Life As I Know It, Thoughts in the Faith

Going Clear: HBO’s Documentary on Scientology

Over the weekend, we had a free HBO/Showtime/Starz promotion with Direct TV, and you know what that means… record, record, record. We do indeed now have The Truman Show, Contact, and The Shining on our DVR list. You’re welcome.

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We also recorded the documentary Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief. We all know that HBO documentaries are top notch, and in fact this one is on pace to be HBO’s second-most-watched documentary. It has been seen by over 5.5 million people, second only to Beyonce which has been viewed by over 9 million people. Can’t compete with that, that’s for sure.

For many of us, including myself, scientology has been this non-Christian, mysterious, crazy sounding cult. I’ve never paid all that much attention to it, but I do remember when more information came out about the “levels” and how the whole thing was made up by one crazy man, and it’s all based on aliens and overlords and crazy CRAZY stuff like that. And I was all like, “woah that’s ridiculous. Who would fall for that?”

But you guys, this FILM. It’s chock-full of former scientology leaders who have since left the church and are truly, for the first time, being honest about the horrific and twisted methods and ideas that scientology is based on. They ALL talked about brain washing. They all talked about fear. They all talked about how ashamed they are now to look back at how much time they spent in it. I, for one, am so grateful they were willing to share their stories. I think the more that the truth comes out, the more people might be saved from potentially landing in the same situation.

If you have HBO (or your friend’s, brother’s, girlfriend’s, cousin does, and you have his password), I highly encourage you to watch this. You will be blown away by this cult. After watching, my husband and I talked about how sad it is that THIS is considered a “religion,” and that this monstrosity will make some people think that this is representative of all religion. Let me just say right here it is NOT. Religion, faith, belief can be SO BEAUTIFUL, and it is such a shame that a corrupt organization like this will likely turn people away from other, wonderful faith lives.

If you want to know a few details of the HBO, this Glamour article covers a few of the highlights. Again, highly encourage you to watch it, and remember that this is NOT how all “religions” work. Christian faith is a beautiful, loving family, and it hurts my heart to see people in pain the way they exhibited in this documentary.

Life As I Know It

Into The Woods

I cannot begin to describe my excitement that Into The Woods is coming out in MOVIE FORM!! While there have been both successful and unsuccessful movie-musicals, I have high hopes for the likes of Meryl Streep, Anna Kendrick, and Johnny Depp.

I’M SO EXCITED!! Watch the trailer…

As an 8th grader, I watched my high school perform this musical, and fell in love with it. I’ve seen several versions of it, and performed in a piece of it during college as the Baker’s Wife. It’s Friday, but I’m pretending this is a little #TBT anyway. Our college, low-budget version looked a little different…but here’s my favorite solo shot for ya!

And a fun little one of our small but mighty group in action.

My college theater group (The Original Cast) was my family in college, and we had so much fun putting on our sometimes-great-sometimes-not performances. This happened to be one of my favorites.

I hope you all have a great weekend. Happy Friday!

Life As I Know It

Top 5 Horror, Thriller, and/or Halloween Films

Disclaimer: These are MY FAVORITES, so while I value your opinion, I don’t value it if you tell me I’m wrong. Just keeping it real.

Okay, so back in middle school, we were obsessed with films that were terrifying at the time. Specifically, I recall practically peeing my pants watching ALL OF THE POLTERGEIST MOVIES in my friend Laura’s basement, and jumping out of my skin watching ALL OF THE SCREAM MOVIES at Mandy’s house. WHY did we do this? I don’t know. These days, I am not at all into movies that scare you simply by making you jump for two hours.

That said, for varying reasons, here are my top five favorite horror, thriller, and/or Halloween films of all time.

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1. Hocus Pocus. You know you were born in the mid-eighties if this movie is a must for Halloween. The song. The one-liners. The innuendos we never noticed when we were ten. Oh, and if you watch NCIS, you may recognize McGee.

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2. The Orphanage. Saw this at The Belcourt with Whitney. Obsessed over it. Made all my other friends see it. It may be in Spanish (with subtitles), but you are totally going to freak out. It just gets in your head. Promise.

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3. Silence of the LambsReally no words here. Just classic and creepy and Anthony Hopkins will forever be a genius.

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4. The ShiningReally this only made the list because before I ever saw the movie, I read the book. And let me tell you, my 8th-grade-self WAS PETRIFIED. The movie seemed kind of lame after the terror I had created in my imagination. So watch the movie, yes. But really…READ THE BOOK!

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5. Seven. Just…Seven. If you haven’t seen it, well, you’re welcome.

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Honorable Mention (because it’s a total spoof but I love it) goes to Shaun of the DeadNot usually my type of humor, but honestly, I just love these two guys. Check it out if you want some laughs with a little bit of jumping mixed in.

So tonight, if you’re not dressing up / going out, you’re not alone. Rent one of these lovely little films instead and make some Halloween Puppy Chow!

And because I have a deep need to post photos of the puppy (yes, I’m obsessed with my dog), Happy Halloween from my little pumpkin!!

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Life As I Know It

Her

Have you seen it? Are you going to?

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Her is one of the most interesting, original concepts I have seen in a while. With all of the books-made-into-movies out there, it’s refreshing to have something that is a completely new idea. If you haven’t seen it, check out the trailer here.

I was skeptical not only before seeing the movie, but even during it. I thought, “Where is this going? How will this end?”

In the end, my friend Laura and I decided we definitely liked it. It commented on many relationship themes – one in particular that Laura nailed on the head.

Spoiler alert! (stop reading here if you want to form your own opinions when you see it!)

At one point, when the main character, Theodore, is discussing his failed marriage, he says something along the lines of “You grow together. And sometimes, if one of you is growing or changing too fast, it scares the other.” This is an interesting thought on its own, but then circles back around when, inevitably, the artificially intelligent operating system grows at an exponential rate, and can no longer relate to Theodore – something the developers surly did not foresee.

This is just a quick littler review and some follow up thoughts. There were many other deep thoughts and ideas throughout the film, that I continue to think about even after the fact. Not to mention that the filmography style is beautiful – brightly colored, and very futuristic (but not really that far off) scenery. If you’re up for something different, go for it. It will make you think!