November 29th, 2004

little review

Poem for Monday

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The end of a quiet family weekend meant a trip to the National Zoo, since the rain ended by late morning and I had finished most of my work (must do the news bullets in the morning as I didn't get back here till well after dinner). Much of the zoo is closed due to construction -- we couldn't even figure out how to get to the bird house, and the bats were not on exhibit -- but we did get to see the pandas, the the elephants and giraffes, the small mammals, the reptiles, the great apes and the savannah animals that were outdoors. We took a friend of my older son's whose father is a professional photographer -- he runs a studio that does graphic design, he's covered NASCAR events and political functions, but I generally don't think about this fact as we barely know the parents. He came to pick up his son while I was downloading the photos I took, and without thinking I said, "Oh, come here, I have a cute photo of our kids!" and he came over and he said, "Oh, that's not bad," and suddenly I remembered what he does for a living...*facepalm* I am horribly embarrassed as he probably thinks I am both a rank amateur and someone who fishes for compliments!

To continue with my literature theme from the poems, I shall post about the last movie I watched: Mary Reilly, starring John Malkovich as Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and Julia Roberts as his maidservant. I have no idea how I had managed for so long not to see a film directed by Stephen Frears, written by Christopher Hampton and co-starring Glenn Close! I found this one for $6 at Best Buy when I bought Prisoner of Azkaban (yes, the bargain rack is dangerous). Having Close and Malkovich in Mary Reilly, though delightful, was in fact one of the movie's flaws -- it was very difficult not to compare them to their Dangerous Liaisons characters, especially as that was also a stylized period piece and Hyde and the madam have things in common with Valmont and Merteuil. But what I remember most from when the film opened was that Roberts was savaged in reviews, and she was really very good; this is by far my favorite of her roles. Her accent isn't perfect, but Malkovich isn't even trying, and her character is a nice balance of strong and wounded from a horrific childhood. It's interesting to see the story from a working class woman's POV though I am tempted to rename Mary Reilly "Mary Sue" because of her inexplicable attraction to Hyde -- the allure of Jekyll makes total sense. I highly recommend the film to anyone who likes Malkovich, Roberts, Frears or Jekyll and Hyde (Close isn't really in it for all that long -- though Michael Gambon is in it, for HP aficionados trying to see everything he did before). Now I am curious to read the novel upon which the film is based.

Gacked from bonesm, and I can't argue:














created with

I kept 46 of the photos I took today, a very high number for me, so I shall post animal pictures in batches over the next couple of weeks. Tonight, the giant pandas, because they are so adorable and I am very sorry about the spider upsetting so many people!

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