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Reviews Written by
Lynne P. Caldwell (Dadeville, AL USA)
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1.0 out of 5 stars Best Picture? P L E A S E............................, Feb. 24 2004
I really wanted to see this film because of all the hype. In addition, I adore Bill Murray. I guess I need to just avoid any movie that the critics like (I did love THE ENGLISH PATIENT). I have actually heard critics say that this movie is better than LORD OF THE RINGS and it should win the academy award. Hello!! Watching LOST IN TRANSLATION was sheer torture. It was so boring--of course this is because nothing happened. And, it wasn't funny (with the exception of a couple scenes). In fact, there was no point, message or even climax during the entire movie. The only thing I liked about this film was the scenery of Tokyo. Before I rented this DVD I checked the reviews on AMAZON and there were over 4 stars. I'm glad to see that the dislikes now total the likes and people will get a fairer overview.

28 Days Later (Widescreen Special Edition)
28 Days Later (Widescreen Special Edition)
DVD ~ Cillian Murphy
Offered by Fulfillment Express CA
Price: CDN$ 21.93
58 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Fantasy/Science Fiction, Dec 1 2003
I am a huge fan of the Fantasy/Science Fiction genre--LOGAN'S RUN, BUFFY, ANGEL, FARSCAPE, STAR TREK (of course my favorites: LORD OF THE RINGS and HARRY POTTER) just to name a few. Subsequently, I watched this film planning to like it and I was not disappointed! I loved the concept: young man wakes from a coma to discover that everyone (he thinks) in London is gone. Eventually he discovers that creepy, monster-like humans (all infected with a 'rage' virus) do exist as they roam the streets at night. Naturally, he is chased throughout the city and is rescued by a couple of non-infected humans. This movie is a thrilling, fast moving ride with the good over evil theme. It is about relationships and loyalties and light at the end of the tunnel! It is also a very entertaining couple of hours!

The Winner
The Winner
by David Baldacci
Edition: School & Library Binding
18 used & new from CDN$ 1.08

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another WINNER for Baldacci, Nov. 30 2003
The reason I love the way David Baldacci writes are many and THE WINNER is another example of a great page-turner. His writing is very compelling--one can become involved in the story on the first page. His books are very thrilling with a lot of twists and turns. There is always an evil villain that keeps you on the edge of your seat. Oftentimes I'll have trouble sleeping if I read Baldacci before going to bed! My heart does so race! My favorite books by this author also have a touch of romance, which fits the bill for my favorite 'happily ever after' books. THE WINNER has all of the above ingredients, I'm happy to say. LuAnn Tyler, a twenty-year old down on her luck mother agrees to help throw the lottery (against her better judgment). The man who makes all of this possible (Mr. Jackson) is an evil genius whose plan slowly unravels ten years later due to a newspaper reporter's inquisitiveness. Mr. Jackson will eliminate anyone who tries to get to close to him. Anyway, you get the picture......
So, if you want to read a wonderful story that will keep you glued to a great book, try THE WINNER--you will be the winner for having read it!

Degas and the Little Dancer
Degas and the Little Dancer
by Laurence Anholt
Edition: Hardcover
32 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

4.0 out of 5 stars Charming little book with lovely illustrations, Nov. 21 2003
This is the story of Marie van Goethen, a young dancer at the Paris Opera Ballet School who posed for Edgar Degas (1824-1917). He created the sculpture, "The Little Dancer" based on Marie's likeness. This was the only Degas sculpture to be exhibited during his lifetime. This charming figure was wearing a tutu and a wig.
The illustrations in this children's book are beautiful and even some of Degas' own paintings are included. I wish that more of Degas' life had been included in this story. I also feel that this book would have been perfect if more of his paintings were displayed with descriptions of each work of art.
This book is a good introduction to Degas and should be targeted towards lower elementary students.

Linnea in Monet's Garden
Linnea in Monet's Garden
by Cristina;Sandin, Joan Bjork
Edition: Hardcover
85 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars B e a u t i f u l, Nov. 14 2003
Linnea, a young Swedish girl has developed quite a friendship with the elderly Mr. Bloom, her upstairs neighbor. Mr. Bloom is a retired gardener who is the proud owner of a lovely book about the great French artist, Claude Monet. After hours and hours of studying Monet and his life, the pair begin the ultimate adventure: a trip to Paris, and where it all began! Linnea and Mr. Bloom visit the Marmottan museum to observe the many paintings of Monet. They study his artwork and how the genius painted. They learn about other Impressionist artists--many who were great friends of Monet. Eventually the young child and elderly gentleman make the ultimate trek to Giverny, where Monet lived and painted.
This book could almost be a 'fun' textbook. The artwork, both of the author's and of Monet's is absolutely exquisite. Becoming familiar with Monet's life and his paintings become a marvelous art history lesson. As an adult, I not enjoyed reading this lovely book but I learned a lot. In fact, a few days after reading LINNEA in Monet's Garden I was watching a Sex in the City episode where Charlotte was showing a group of people one of Monet's 'lily' murals. Being familiar with that painting because of this book was an exciting moment for me!

Crocodile on the Sandbank
Crocodile on the Sandbank
by Elizabeth Peters
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Price: CDN$ 9.89
51 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

4.0 out of 5 stars AND A CROCODILE WAITETH UPON THE SANDBANK, Nov. 12 2003
Miss Amelia Peabody, the heroine of this adorable mystery is left a small fortune by her father, an antiques scholar. She is the no-nonsense (almost stereotypical) 'middle aged' English woman who is quite happily, single. In fact, at 32 years of age, Amelia has no interest in men and enjoys dressing as plainly as possible. Since the story takes place in the 1880's, Amelia must have a female traveling companion and quite fortuitously rescues the exquisite, sweet, blue-blooded Evelyn Barton-Forbes. Together the women go on a wonderful journey that leads them down the Nile to the ancient burial chambers of Khuenaten. It is here where they are reacquainted with the Emerson brothers who are excavating the burial sites. And thus, the adventure begins.
I loved this little novel. There is adventure, mystery, a lot of ancient history and even romance. In fact, I couldn't put this book down! The title refers to a poem found in an ancient scroll. Walter Emerson (Evelyn's love interest) translates the hieroglyphics into lovely verses that Amelia explains as, "The crocodile is a symbol of the dangers and difficulties any true lover would risk to win his sweetheart." And naturally, the poem is a reflection of what happens in the book. I can't wait to read the next one!
I also want to echo another reviewer and thank AMAZON for their wonderful lists. I have discovered the best books because of you!

Through a Glass Darkly
Through a Glass Darkly
by Karleen Koen
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
43 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

4.0 out of 5 stars I COULDN'T PUT THIS BOOK DOWN AND HAVE NO IDEA WHY!, Nov. 4 2003
I guess it is the wonderful writing that made "Through a Glass Darkly" such a compelling page-turner. I loved all the descriptions of the British aristocracy (or should I say the 'idle rich'?) during the early 1700's. And I was intrigued and repulsed by the images of the French royalty (and their patrician friends and acquaintances) and the lurid and decadent details of their nightlife. Learning about the workings of Tamworth, the lovely estate that is central to the story was absolutely fascinating.
When I read a book, I like to transport myself into the principal character (or the female who is closest to the lead). Even with the 'Harry Potter' series, I can visualize myself (quite easily) as a student at Hogwarts. I could not see myself as Barbara Aderley. I can't imagine falling madly in love with a man who was almost 30 years older than me WHEN I WAS TEN! Throughout the entire novel, we are constantly reminded what a good, kind, honorable, and decent man was Roger Montgeoffry. I'm sorry; I just couldn't see those qualities. To me, he was a selfish, thoughtless individual who lived a very immoral and depraved life. And I am not referring to his 'little secret'! He was a horrible husband who had no qualms about leaving his fifteen year old wife (for more self indulgences) immediately following a horrible tragedy. Throughout all of this Barbara remained in love with Roger--I can't understand it. Wouldn't these events have been an impetus to sever the relationship (for most normal people)? I also felt cheated because supposedly Roger had promised an explanation for his actions--and we never received it. I love fairytales--any book or movie where there is joy and most definitely 'happy ever after.' There is very little joy in this saga; very few people are kind and there is a lot of death (read with kleenex). I really wanted something good to happen to Barbara, Therese and to poor Tony (who started off being fat, stupid and insecure and then morphed into movie star good looks, confidence and intelligence) but nothing ever did.
I recommend THROUGH A GLASS DARKLY to anyone who enjoys a well-written historical novel. If you enjoy a warm fuzzy book, then read Rosemund Pilcher (my preference!).

Bend It Like Beckham (Widescreen)
Bend It Like Beckham (Widescreen)
DVD ~ Parminder Nagra
Price: CDN$ 16.98
22 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars ONE OF THE BEST MOVIES OF 2003!, Oct. 20 2003
BEND IT LIKE BECKHAM is the consummate 'feel good' movie. This film stars two adorable teenagers, Paraminder Nagra as the British Indian Jess, and her new friend Jules, played by Keira Knightley. Jess' parents are immigrants from India who are trying their hardest to raise their two daughters in the 'old country' way with little success. The one thing that they are adamant about is that Jess will NOT play football (soccer) because it isn't lady-like. Jess' athletic ability is discovered by Jules (whose horrible mother is constantly trying to push her daughter to buy padded bras and more feminine clothing--she also tries to discourage the playing of football) who introduces her to the coach of the women's team. Jules' father encourages his daughter to play and even practices with her. The fun starts when Jess is continually caught sneaking out to practice. This movie is so funny that oftentimes I would have to rewind because my laughing covered up the sound. I loved the gorgeous costumes of the beautiful wedding party. This is a movie to be savored and to watch over and over. I highly recommend it!

The In-Laws (Widescreen)
The In-Laws (Widescreen)
DVD ~ Albert Brooks
Offered by kingoftradeonline
Price: CDN$ 6.99
26 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Movies don't all have to have "lessons" or deep meanings!, Oct. 19 2003
This review is from: The In-Laws (Widescreen) (DVD)
A good movie is a like a good book, a means to escape. The older I get, the more I enjoy watching something that is just plain funny. I don't want to be sad, I don't want to have to concentrate on a movie with a lot of metaphors and hidden meanings. I don't want murders, rapes, heart breaks or pain and suffering. Sometimes it's fun to watch a movie that is just pure entertainment and THE IN-LAWS fits the bill. Michael Douglas and Albert Brooks play the fathers of a couple who are about to be married. The only problem is that the dull, neurotic, germ obsessed, fanny pack wearing foot doctor becomes involved with CIA agent Douglas's secret life. Here begin laughs that don't stop until the movie is over. In fact, I laughed until I cried and trust me, it is wonderful to be that happy! What an escape!

Uncle Jed's Barbershop
Uncle Jed's Barbershop
by Margaree King Mitchell
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 9.89
47 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful book that should be read to children of any age., Oct. 12 2003
This review is from: Uncle Jed's Barbershop (Paperback)
This fabulous book stole my heart. I feel so lucky to have a job that allows me to share my love of books with my wonderful students. I do my elementary counseling through children's literature. UNCLE JED'S BARBERSHOP is a book I enjoy reading over and over to kids of all ages. What a marvelous lesson. I think it is important for kids to be reminded of how unfair things were to African Americans many years ago. But the best part of the book reminds us all that if we work hard enough, we can realize our dream. Even after reading this book to six different classes in one day, I still cry my eyes out on the last few pages--the most perfect ending!

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