I'll be making the time to see Mustang at the cinema next week. The trailer looks amazing - the cinematography, the beautiful and incredibly fraught age, the cultural and political mores, the world young women inherit and inhabit, the long hair...
Arvo film sesh and bake off to 'round out the weekend. Having spent the morning working on a deadline, and sore as hell from my run the day before, I made time for a good walk at Clovelly, where it was sunny and glorious. Afterwards we settled in to watch films and eat chilli with guacamole and brown rice (and lots of sour cream) and a few beers. We'd decided on a Scorcese theme, never having seen Taxi Driver which I think is a film you're supposed to have seen. And wowsers, it was intense. Good, but intense.
This is what it looks like to be inside on a gloriously sunny day. Not the whole day, mind, but the middle part when I was doing washing and the afternoon part when I was napping. I had a top of the pops yummy breakfast at Three Queens and my cousin Joe's birthday morning tea (scones and sponge cake!), then some downtime before D and I went and saw Boyhood at Dendy, which I guess will close soon. It was brilliant, so amazingly engrossing and poignant and raw in parts. Very glad I saw it on the big screen, the nearly-3 hours passed in absolute awe, so engaged and in love with how beautifully this young kid grew up. YEAR TWO.
I love, love, love that I woke up to heavy, noisy, pouring rain on SUNDAY. Couldn't have asked for a better excuse to sleep in. I didn't put the kettle on till 8 and then took a cup of tea, some honey yoghurt and toast with orange marmalade back to bed to watch Beginners. I saw the first ten minutes or so a few years ago before falling asleep (as is my habit when cuddling on the couch). It's one of the many streaming on SBS at the moment, and I'd been meaning to find time for it because I knew I'd love it. And I did, so much. The distant, stripped-back LA feeling, the quiet simplicity of it, the sad, lonely parts, the golden yet awkward memories, the knowing someone and having them know you. I loved the beautiful father and son relationship, the truths the characters came to, the sparse dialogue and the sweetest / smartest dog, the old, wide houses full of nice chairs, and especially the circle of the story. The 'this is what the stars look like' moments.
It was good to take it slow. I met friends for lunch at Kitchen By Mike later because their roast pork is so special, bought some new bathers at Zimmermann and was not long back to bed for a little more Christmas preparation (it's slow going, but super rewarding and calming).
* Quite different, but thinking how nice the father / son relationship was in About Time too, not something you get a lot of in film...
A few different things fell into place this week. It was a nice bit of alignment, a kind of 'yeah, OK' moment. It started late last month when I re-watched Noah Baumbach's Frances Ha and thought about how much I had liked it. I liked it for a lot of reasons - not in the least because of New York City and all that beautiful cinematography - but mainly because of the fragment it was. I like stories that just take a piece, a small glimpse at someone's life. Intimate more than sweeping. And the arch of this story was lovely and sad and sweet and funny and in parts very normal. I loved the character and thought Greta Gerwig played just the right amount of smart and fragile and quirky, never overdone. It made me remember how glad I am that I'm not 27 anymore.
And then on Monday I came across Chloe's blog and really liked her review - how she could watch Frances run through the streets forever. I loved that scene too, it felt so light and strong at the same time. Full of grace and heart and a wonderful sense of not-giving-a-damn.
Which brings me to last night and the crazy-big storm that swept Sydney. The afternoon had been coming across all dark and moody, then promptly got hit by a torrential amount of rain just as I left the office. I got a bus halfway to my yoga studio and, in my sneakers and yoga pants, backpack on tight, giggled like hell as I ran the remaining few blocks. There was a bit of uncertainty as I climbed off the bus, with people squealed and huddled under awnings and in doorways (it was flash-flood, drains-blocked cats and dogs heavy rain), before I realised that I actually didn't care. The worst that could happen was I'd get wet, and that was fine. That was actually kind of fun. So I just went with it. And there was a moment as I was crossing Albion St and leaping over rather a large puddle that I thought about Frances Ha, about her running through New York and it being beautiful. And I thought how lucky I was that I remembered my sneakers but not my umbrella, that I was healthy and able to run and jump, that I had nothing of consequence to dampen my spirits.
And after all that, resting before class and setting our intentions, my yoga instructor Persia went ahead and made my night. She has a habit of reading things so beautifully, and spoke to us about the rain and water. Well obviously she did, it was still pouring down outside, but it was more how she framed it. She reminded us that we're mostly water, that water makes up our very being and is the life force that drives creativity and passion and we should embrace that. She put together a sequence of poses that had amazing flow and worked at supporting us to let things go. And I really have some things to let go. It was the closest I've felt to that for a while, to washing away all of the heartache and tension and feeling my best.
What I'm saying in a round-about way is last night was good.
I watched High Fidelity again last week. Gosh but I love that film.
I love Nick Hornby and the book was a real favourite of mine when I first read it. I was about 17 and hadn't really read a 'man-book' before, something from a distinctly male perspective that was full of humour and heart and entirely engrossing. Up until then I'd lived mostly on classics and romantic young-adulty novels, so it was such a refreshing change. It seemed so grown-up and British, so normal. I think I've always been drawn to stories like that, not dramatic or over-the-top stuff, but the real life stuff. Everyday stories that happen between work and the pub and catching the train.
When I found out they were making a film version I was wary, as we often are when it's a favourite, but especially as it was going to be American. I loved the North London of Hornby's book and didn't quite see how it would translate. But of course it didn't matter at all. John Cusack is a dreamboat and they kept all the right things and managed to make it a whole story of its own at the same time. And I love Chicago, the city that's a town, that feels middle-America but lively and full of character.
And the 'all-time top fives' absolutely make the film. I love lists and top-fives and it's a beautiful way of framing the story. From a hundred song categories to Rob's top-five things he misses about Laura, it's film that knows which details matter. What we listen to and what we read are how we view the world, and what better way to make that point than a whole soundtrack of just-right pop songs (and a cameo from the Boss).
* It's also the film that introduced me to the Beta Band, and you can't argue with that.