Showing posts with label Come Dine With Me. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Come Dine With Me. Show all posts

Friday, December 6, 2013

Retirement: Good Days and Bad Days and The Week in Reviews

[I review the movies "Philomena," "All is Bright," "Winter of Frozen Dreams," "Just Like a Woman" and Stacy Keach's memoir.]

But first

We all have good days and bad days.

Retirement is no different, except with all of that time on your hands, the bad days really hurt.

Here are some examples of what I mean:

Good Day:  Your adult child called just to say "I love you."
Bad Day:    Your adult child said, "I love you" after asking you for money to
                   bail him out of jail.

Good Day:  Your adult children are all home for Christmas.
Bad Day:    For your Christmas present, your adult children all chipped in for a
                  week's stay for you at the Rose of Sharon Retirement Home.

Good Day:   Your wine guzzling poodle jumps up on your lap for just a cuddle,
                    not wine.
Bad Day:      Forget that.  Ain't happenin'

Good Day:     You found a volunteer opportunity.
Bad Day:       It involves adult diapers.

Good Day:   You've been to the gym and are feeling a bit slimmer.
Bad Day:      Lane Bryant called.  You left your purchase on the counter.

Good Day:   The Christmas tree is up and you didn't get into a big fight with
                    Hubby over the lights.
Bad Day:      HUGE fight with Hubby over the lights.

Good Day:   You have three darling dogs whose cavorting amuses you.
Bad Day:     Three dogs are a pack and their cavorting knocked you down the

This is what a pack of dogs looks like.
What constitutes a good or a bad day for you? 
Well, sometimes we can't control how the day is going to go. 
But here is something you can count on. 
Rosy the Reviewer's
Week in Reviews.
***In Theatres Now***
The true story of an Irish woman, who as a young girl became pregnant, gave birth in a convent and was forced to give up her son.  Fifty years later, with the help of a disgraced journalist, she goes in search of him.
Steve Coogan is not that well-known in the U.S. but is a huge star in the UK, known mostly for his comedic work.  Here he wrote the screenplay (based on a true story) and plays it mostly straight. 
But this is Dame Judy's show.  Supposedly Dame Judy's eyesight is failing and she has to have her scripts read to her.  Whatever is going on with her eyes, it doesn't affect what she can do with them to rip at your heart strings. If you can keep from crying, especially if you are a mother, you have it over me. Have your hankies handy.  Loved it!
Rosy the Reviewer says...Ring!  Ring!  Dame Judy.  Oscar calling. 
Movies You Might Have Missed
And some you will be glad you did!
(I see the bad ones so you don't have to)
Dennis is out on parole and bands together with old friend Rene to sell Christmas trees so he can buy his estranged daughter a piano.
A small film that didn't have much impact on me, probably because I am not a big Paul Giamatti fan.  Hubby liked it better than I did.
Rosy the Reviewer says...I give it just a couple of Christmas trees.
A college girl turns to prostitution and things don't go well.
A low-budget Thora Birch vehicle (remember her from American Beauty?") that is all very frozen and dreamy and a step way down for Birch from "American Beauty."  It proves once again, I must not put films in my DVD queue based on a preview.  Repeat after me.  "I must not put films in my DVD queue based on a preview."
Rosy the Reviewer says...I usually like films about the underbelly of life but as Charles Barkley used to say, this one is "Turible, Turible, Turible."
Marilyn (Sienna Miller) loses her job and comes home to a cheating husband so decides to hit the road and enter a belly dancing contest in Santa Fe.  She is joined by her friend, Mona, who has a secret.
Think of this as a belly-dancing "Thelma and Louise," without the suicide at the end (and if I just spoiled "Thelma and Louise" for you, where have you been?)

And for every woman who thinks her mother-in-law is a dragon, get a load of this one. 
I couldn't help but wonder how Sienna Miller avoided becoming a big star like Julia Roberts.  She has the looks and the acting chops.  I also couldn't help but remember that her then boyfriend Jude Law cheated on her with the babysitter.  Jude, you idiot!
Rosy the Reviewer says...a fun diversion especially if you like belly dancing. 
***Book of the Week***

All in All:  An Actor's Life On and Off the Stage by Stacy Keach (2013)
This acting memoir begins with Keach's arrest for cocaine possession and then backtracks to his early life and career.
Though Keach has had acting success in films such as "Fat City" and "American History X" and as Mike Hammer in the TV series of the same name, he never attained superstardom.  He clearly preferred the stage and dreamed of being the next Olivier.  He is candid about his drug addiction, which could perhaps explain why his career didn't reach the heights but the book is surprisingly dry.
Rosy the Reviewer of Keach might enjoy this, but acting students should take note.  He has a whole chapter on acting techniques at the end of the book.


Hooray, hooray.  "Come Dine With Me" has come to the U.S!
Come Dine With Me is a British competition TV program where 4 or 5 strangers get together at each other's houses to cook each other a full meal - appetizer, main course and dessert.  After the meal, the visitors rate the meal on a scale of 1-10.  Naturally the groups of people are disparate and often over the top, lots of alcohol is consumed and sometimes there are costumes which is all part of the fun, and the voice over commentary by Dave Lamb is hilarious.
Now Lifetime is offering its version, which if the first episode is any indication is a Canadian import.  It mirrors the British version down to the theme music, but I miss Dave Lamb's commentary.  Also the British version is usually 30 minute segments over five nights and here we have all five nights wrapped into one hour.  One thing on the positive side, it moves quickly.  On the negative side, there is not as much coverage of the actual cooking as we see in the British version.
Rosy the Reviewer says...Foodies and fans of humorous reality TV will love this! 

That's it for this week.
See you Tuesday!

Thanks for reading!
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Friday, September 20, 2013

Rosy the Reviewer's Week in Reviews

[I review the movies "Wish You Were Here," "The Place Beyond the Pines," "Star Trek: Into Darkness," "Upside Down" and comment on food and fashion.]

NOTE TO MY READERS:  I am going to try a format change.  My very smart daughter, who is also a blogger and whose opinions I respect, suggested I try publishing shorter and/or different posts more often.  So I am going to try to publish my column on Tuesdays and my reviews on Thursday or Friday.  I know I have some readers who particularly like my reviews and I was thinking they were getting lost at the end of my weekly column.  So let me know what you think.  Separate the reviews from the column or go back to the one long post per week that includes everything?  Or separate the blog even more?
You decide.

There is something for everybody this week.  Film lovers, book lovers, foodies and fashionistas!

This week, in addition to my film and book reviews, it's all about one of the best food shows and the proper wardrobe for a Rock & Roll Wife!

***Films (and Books)***

"Wish You Were Here" (2012)

This Australian film follows two couples on a vacation to Cambodia where one of them goes missing.  Beware of the friend whose line of work seems dodgy.

Rosy the Reviewer says...really riveting drama and character study.  A small film that deserves to be seen.
Highly recommended.

"The Place Beyond the Pines" (2012)

Ryan Gosling's intensity continues to amaze in this story of a trick motorcycle rider who starts robbing banks to support his family and what happens when he encounters a rookie cop.  Lots of big names hereI'm not a huge Bradley Cooper fan.  Not sure why.
Rosy the Reviewer says...highly engrossing but falls apart a bit at the end. 
Still worth seeing and recommended.

I so wanted to like this film because I had heard it was really good and I do like adventure sci-fi films.  I will say that it was probably quite spectacular to look at on the big screen in 3D but the story just didn't cut it for me.  Sometimes these big epics just get too convoluted. When I have to think "Huh?" through the whole thing, I am distracted.  But there is homage paid to "The Wrath of Khan" and the character interactions are fun, if not sometimes silly.  I will say Chris Pine as Capt. Kirk is a nice looking fellow er, good actor.

Rosy the Reviewer will get the most impact seeing this on the big screen but Star Trek fans will enjoy.

"Upside Down"  (2012)

This is one of those films you will either love or hate.  I loved it.  It's a Romeo and Juliet tale about lovers who live in twinned worlds with gravities that pull in opposite directions.  The cinematography and set design are works of art.  I just wish Kirstin Dunst would get her teeth fixed.  When she smiles, she looks like a character out of "The Simpsons."  Oh, I know, that's mean.  But as many people say after they have said something mean, "I can't help how I feel."

Rosy the Reviewer says...those who like sci-fi, fantasy and love stories will enjoy despite some plot issues.


"Confessions of a Latter Day Virgin" by Nicole Hardy

A memoir that combines comedy and drama as a young Mormon woman tries to stay true to her religion and remain a virgin until she marries.  Not an easy task when you are well into your 20's.  Imagine.
Rosy the Reviewer says...a quick read that sheds light on what it is to be a young, attractive single Mormon woman, though it's a bit of a one-trick pony.  Will she or won't she?
If you like humorous memoirs and are curious about the Mormon religion, you will enjoy this.


If you are a foodie, you will love this British TV program, "Come Dine with Me."

Four foodies get together each night in each other's homes to eat food prepared by one of the four.  Then they score each other and the winner wins 1000 pound. In addition to watching the food created and the interaction of the guests, which has gotten more and more outrageous over time, the narrator, Dave Lamb, is cheeky and an absolute hoot.  The show is available on YouTube.
I wish they did a version here in the U.S.  There was a rumor that they would but so far haven't seen it. 

Rosy the Reviewer says...a must for foodies and Anglophiles.

But there is a program that airs in the U.S. in various cities called "Check Please," and yours truly got to be on it!

We didn't cook for each other in each other's houses.  We recommended our favorite restaurants and then anonymously dined there.  Then we came together to talk about what we thought. 

Here is my episode. 

So far I don't see that there is another season in the offing, but to show I am in good company, our own President Obama was in the Chicago version of the show (when he was a Senator).  

Here it is.

Check your local PBS station to see if you have this show, "Check Please,"  in your neck of the woods.  If you are really a foodie, you will love it.  It's a lot of fun.
(Here is the main link for "Check Please Northwest" for other episodes). 



"Rock & Roll Wives"

Now that Hubby is in a band again (did I tell you that's how we met?), I have the added dilemma of looking the part of a proper Rock & Roll Wife.

Do I fit myself out in full R & R regalia?

or go for a more sophisticated approach? 
The LBD with touches of denim, bling and the requisite tattoos?
or a more fashion forward approach?
Rosy the Reviewer says...always go for the bling!
As I mentioned, Hubby plays in a band.
Their gig at Jack Murphy's last Saturday night was lots of fun.  They will be appearing there again on October 5th so if you are in the Seattle area, join us! And feel free to wear your rock & roll finery.
Rosy the Reviewer says...don't miss the singular singing sensation that is Chuck Brewer and the guitar stylings of Mike Tiano.
Hope I gave you some ideas for the weekend. 
I wish you all great happiness!
 See you next week!