03 December 2006

sun or snow?

It's December 3rd. As predicted yesterday, I've managed to check five people off the gift list so far. I want to get at least two more done tonight, hopefully with the help of Amazon.com.

This does not include holiday cards, unfortunately. And I keep remembering people that I need to do cards for, so that list is getting longer. Problem being that I'm not sure where my address book is--or if it's even updated. So I might flake on those again (it's nearly traditional at this point, my not sending cards). Yes, I'm a writer who does not like writing cards. Silly, right?


Illicit confession time. I've been downloading Pan's Labyrinth since Friday. It's almost done. I've already watched the first hour of it (sometimes the file allows you to see what's been downloaded so far, sometimes it doesn't).

The version I've got is dubbed in French with chopped-off English subtitles. Whenever a character was saying so much (two line's worth), you can read the top line. But not the bottom line. And for single lines of dialog nothing can be read at all. So I kind of understand what's being said, but not really.

It has some particularly violent and bloody moments--thus the R-rating--but I don't think that should deter fantasy enthusiasts; because, for all the gore, what I've seen is pretty damn brilliant. I think I prefer it to The City of Lost Children (another foreign fairy tale for adults). I'm looking forward to watching it in the cinema, in its original Spanish with full English subtitles.

I also watched A Ma Soeur yesterday. I'm not sure what to say about it. I suppose I could share the plot. But it's awful, so feel free to skip the following paragraph.

French family on vacation has two adolescent daughters. The elder one is 15, thin and pretty and, oh yeah, a slag. The younger one is 12 or 13 and overweight. The parents insist that the elder drag the younger everywhere she goes, and they have to share a room and so on, etc. Elder one falls for 20-something Italian guy, and he visits her at their house in the middle of the night. And the younger one has to lie there and pretend to be asleep while her sister is being a cocktease one night and loses her virginity the next (at great length--the scene goes on for about fifteen or twenty minutes--I think the director is a twisted bitch). The parents are oblivious, and the father is a workaholic who leaves vacation early. So the mother eventually finds out that her daughter has been a naive slag and then starts driving them home. Only they stop at a rest-stop on the highway and some guy comes along with an axe, breaks the windshield, bashes the slutty sister's head in, strangles the mother, and then drags the overweight girl into the woods and rapes her. But he doesn't kill her. And the message we are meant to glean is anyone's best guess: that just because you're fat and quiet doesn't mean you too are not worth raping. Or something. But that's the way the movie ends, with Anais (the fat sister) being led out of the woods by policemen and seeing her mother and sister half-dragged from their car, chalked and taped by forensics. And Anais says, "He didn't rape me," or something to that effect. The End.

As you might expect, it kind of left me feeling very bleah, which led to watching Love Actually (because after you take a downer, you're going to need an upper to make you feel okay again).

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