Friday, January 4, 2008

A Favorite Christmas Present & Two Movies

 The Madonnas of Leningrad: A Novel by Debra Dean has to be one of the best quick reads I have read in years. It is about a tour guide who lived in the museum during the siege of Leningrad. Her descriptions of the paintings were so inspiring.  I read it on the flight home on Monday and I am still thinking about it today. 

My parents have been to Russia twice and love the Hermitage Museum. This book made me want to go there too. I am so envious of my father who actually had the chance to read this book while in Russia. Even more impressive, this book has sparked a deeper interest in this history.  I'm so surprised to report that I actually think I might read the  640 page book The 900 Days: The Siege of Leningrad. I haven't read an adult history book of any length since college, so this is really something.

Yesterday we went to see the movie Juno. It is a smart and sassy story of teen pregnancy. All of the performances were awesome.  I think Ellen Page, who played Juno, deserves an Oscar nod. Each character was believable and smart. I have no doubt that this thoughtful portrayal of adoption will save some babies. Cliff liked it too.

After Juno, we realized that we could still make the matinee for Sweeny Todd, so we threw caution to the wind and saw two movies in one afternoon! 

Vacation is so divine! 

Basically, I just wanted to see this because Emily raved about it. We like a lot of the same movies like Amelie and A Very Long Engagement. Still I had my doubts. 

Sweeny Todd is one dark, disgusting, and unbelievably beautiful movie. Cliff said it was "perfect." Six years and a billion or so movies with this guy, and I don't think I have heard that before. I am not one for slasher movies and there was no way I could eat meat for dinner after seeing this movie. Still, Sweeny Todd surprised me. I really enjoyed it. If nothing else, it is beautiful. The mirror and old glass scenes killed me.


Vader's Mom said...

I need to Juno to my list to watch. Sweeny Todd is already on there, but I'll probably just rent it. Jeff's not much for a musical. I usually have to see them by myself.

Meredith said...

Thanks for the book recommendation! my library bag is so empty this month.

Love your cookie header!

jar said...

It sounds like a wonderful book and a perfect present. The painting is beautiful.

jungle dream pagoda said...

I ached I loved Sweeney sooo much!