Welcome to austinagrodolce … My family and I garden with more intention and enthusiasm than allocated budget or overall design plan. It shows. Wildlife populations don't seem to notice our lack of cohesive design, they just like the native plants here. It seems by growing local we've thrown out a welcome mat. Occasionally, we're surprised at who (and what) shows up.

Friday, October 5, 2007

Something Different

OK, sure, I say all over the place this blog is about food and fun.

Well, I eat popcorn at the movies and when I see a film I like that's fun for me so...

Go see "Across the Universe"! I caught it last weekend, thoroughly enjoyed it, and now I want to assure you it is well worth the price of admission. Although I'll likely buy a copy to watch repeatedly at home, this is a film made for the big screen experience.

The critics love it or they hate it. This is apparently not a film that leaves anybody undecided. I loved it.

From the opening bars to the final credits, I was transfixed.

Now, I am a near life long Beatle's fan. I say "near" because I am of a certain age, and I "was" before the Beatles "were", OK?

In 4th grade at a slumber party I remember us very seriously discussing which Beatle we liked the most and why. "Please Please Me" had just been released in the US and I think it was the first album of any kind most of us had purchased but most definitely the first rock and roll. Certainly not to be the last.

"Across the Universe" is a musical movie that uses the Beatle's songs to move the plotline. We are introduced to Jude, Lucy, Max, Prudence, JoJo and others we all have known for years, only this time they are live, very human, and prone to sing the songs with their own voices and in their own way. This unsettles some folks and rivets others. I fell into the riveted category.

An aside here. You will want, when you see this movie, to try and get the seat furthest away from the woman in her mid to late 50s who is there to sing along.

Unless our movie audience was singular, and I doubt that very much, there is going to be at least one person in every showing who has confused "Across the Universe" with a karaoke opportunity.

Except that I was too terribly annoyed to be certain I could remain polite, I wanted so very much to assure the woman in our theater that everything was fine, we ALL know the words to ALL the songs, and we don't need to hear her singing them quietly to herself. She was not saving the music somehow by singing it on her own. She was not adding to the theatrical experience. And I am not sure she could really TRULY appreciate the music from the screen, given she was busy making her own.

Eventually this movie may become a new Rocky Horror Show type experience where folks will dress as their favorite characters and repeat their (very few) lines of dialog or more likely, sing their songs with them. But until then, I am begging all of you who have the strong sing-along tendencies to curb your enthusiasm. Just let the movie shine on it's own and you can eventually buy or rent a version to show at home and sing your heart out.

Heart out, by the way, is how you'll finish the movie if you like it. When I left "Across the Universe" I felt I had taken a trip in the WayBack machine. I felt younger, sillier (in that good way) , and I remembered what it was to be falling in love with music on hand to match.

Ah, the Beatles. The sound track of my young life. Every song they've sung is now layered with my own memories, and it was a testimony to the power of this film that it gently overrode my personal associations to create a context all it's own.

I say go see "Across the Universe" for yourself if you are a Beatle's fan. Especially if you are not so much the purist that having beautiful young men and women who are NOT the Beatles singing their songs soulfully will bother you. You can decide for yourself if it is wondrous or despicable.

And when you do go, don't make too much noise with your popcorn. And please, please me, and don't sing along.

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