Friday, May 31, 2013

let the games begin!

We've had the first, restful, week of summer vacation. Yes, Raine has played with her friends every day this week. Yes, I've taken lovely naps, thank you. I've done some sewing, but not as much as I pictured myself doing this week. I've put together two pair of shorts and two pair of pants for the girl, but only finished one of each. I didn't even get started on the tops I have cut out for her. Next week, I guess, around the commitments I made to do stuff for school (compensated, of course).

Raine's flying adventure, two years ago
Tomorrow, we send Raine off to visit her grandparents. She's independent enough not to mind flying by herself, and she will have books etc to keep her busy on the flight. I know part of her wishes we were all going, but the relationship she has/will forge with her grandparents by herself is different than the one she has with us there as a buffer. Different for them, too. They are her only living grandparents, she's their only grandchild. They should be able to dote and spoil without parents looking on and judging. They've already got reservations at a water park resort. OF COURSE she will love it!

Last year, we managed to tour the Biltmore, and get a rare family photo
I'll be busy with school stuff while she's gone, and then almost as soon as she gets back, she and I will be off to Tucson. We will each enjoy the company and companionship of our friends there (conveniently living in the same abode). I'm so looking forward to visiting and making stuff with Steph!

Soon after we return, we will enjoy having my neice come stay with us for a bit. That is always fun. We'll have to go to White Sands, and shop, and I hope I get to make some stuff for her, too, while she's here. All too soon, it will be time for school to begin again, but for now, let the summer games begin!

Monday, May 13, 2013

reaching reacher

Tom Cruise produced and starred in the movie Jack Reacher. It is based on the book One Shot,  by Lee Child, one of several about Reacher. I've been reading these books, here and there, although One Shot is not one I've gotten to. Yet. I like Reacher. He's big and quick and tough and a good guy. A really good guy. He takes care of trouble, even when he's in over his head.... which is WAY, WAY over my head. At least in the taking care of trouble category.

So I knew this movie was out, and I was curious about it, but in a quandry. I mean, I LIKE Jack Reacher books. I think they would make excellent fodder for an action movie or two, or twelve. But Tom Cruise? Aside from Tom's occasional bouts of public crazyness, he just doesn't fall into my "here's the actor who should play Reacher" list. Why not? Well, Reacher is big. No, BIG. Taller, broader, bulkier than many of his foes. Tom Cruise? Not so much. Is that a deal breaker? Maybe. Reacher is tough and intimidating and a fighter, depending on quickness, strength, size and lots of experience. Can Cruise pull that off? Even without the size being a factor? I just didn't know.

This weekend, when I was walking through Walmart (my coffeemaker went south the last time we had a power surge/outage) I saw a copy for about $15. Well, that was a low enough price to take a chance - even though the fact it was there AND a low price all ready did not bode well.

So, now for the review. I still feel like a bigger actor - taller at least - would have helped bring the physicality to the part. That said, Cruise did all right with the rest of it. Not mind blowing, but all right. The movie was a perfectly acceptable action/adventure film with a car chase and a really, really bad guy. As a mystery, it lost some of the investigative-ness it might have, but Reacher is not Sherlock Holmes. He generally solves things by being somewhere that he shouldn't be, asking questions that he shouldn't and defending himself effectively afterward (beating up people). The movie had an exciting car chase, which kind of surprised me. Remember, I haven't read the book this movie is based on, so it may very well have an extended car chase in it. Generally speaking, though, that does not seem Reacher's style. Sure, he drives. He gets behind the wheel when necessary in some borrowed car or another, but he also seems perfectly happy to be the passenger. He never insists on being the driver. Never brags on his mad driving skillz. He seems the get from here to there guy, not the let's take this muscle car for a spin & see what she can do kinda guy. But, it makes for entertaining cinema, so... a car chase.

All in all, I think the movie is - like Tom in the part of Jack Reacher - all right. I was entertained. Do I think it was the best Jack Reacher movie that ever could be made? No. Do I expect that there will be others? Ummm... maybe. Depends on how much Cruise likes producing, and how crazy he is about being Reacher. Would I go to a theater and spend my hard-earned money? Maybe. Would I see it on disk, and maybe even buy it? Yeah, probably.