Monday, February 16, 2004

Movie Weekend

Presidents' Day is good for one thing, and that's renting movies. Jean rented two, which we watched on Friday and Saturday. In order:

The Whale Rider. This is an inside look at the lives of modern descendants of the Maori, and their quest for tribal pride and identity. Keisha Castle-Hughes is a striking child actress, both in features and presence. She plays the granddaughter of a Maori chief who was expecting a grandson to carry on the unbroken line. He is hard on her for this, but she persists in quiet and courageous way, until she wins her grandfather and her tribe. This movie reminds me in a sideways sort of way of The Fast Runner, another movie Jean picked up. It's great, rent it.

American Splendor. It's been so long since I read any Harvey Pekar, that I had to ask Jean if I'd gotten her into his stuff, or if she'd gotten me into it. She says I did it, back when I was still collecting comics. In any case, this movie stars Paul Giamatti as Harvey Pekar, a file clerk in a V.A. hospital in Cleveland, who writes stories about is ordinary life and becomes (somewhat) famous when they are illustrated in comic book form. I really enjoyed this one, and liked how they'd cut between the actors and interviews with their real-life counterparts. Very nice.

I feel like I'm missing one, but that's all for now.

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