Movie: Doctor Strange
Another visit to the Marvel universe. Visually spectacular, owing much to “inception”. Has a car crash which was a genuine jump moment (even though I knew from a review that it was going to happen). Running time is a bit long, but it creates its own world effectively and has enough laughs to be an entertaining piece.
Hell or High Water – watch it for a Jeff Bridges performance, or a character study, or an indictment against the treatment of the working poor in Texas – it’s a dark, violent-in-places story of an anti-hero and a law-man.
Movie: Jack Reacher: Never Go Back
The opening scene of Jack Reacher 2 – which is in the trailer – pans across the aftermath of a hand-to-hand fight, while the eponymous aggressor Tom Cruise sits in a nearby diner, waiting for law enforcement to arrive. Rather than starting with an action scene, we start after it. This seemed – in the trailer – a clever device, but is more the talisman for an action movie that feels a little phoned-in.
I wanted to enjoy it, but despite moments of cleverness and amusement, it wasn’t stand-out enough for a Tom Cruise movie.
Di Lorenzo Coffee. 14 Hartill-Law Avenue, Bardwell Park. I’ve driven past this place a few times, and when I was due for a late lunch, I thought I’d call in. There’s a lot of Pinocchio-themed toys and artwork on the walls and around the coffee machine, and the menu is even inside a Pinocchio storybook.
Tasty and generously portioned caesar salad ($12.50) and flat white ($3.50), with still water in an italian soda bottle (free). It’s a good quality, suburban cafe that makes an effort to make its customers welcome.
In this podcast interview with Moira Weigel surveying the landscape of dating apps, and looking back at the history of “dating” – how women joining the workforce changed the nature of courtship in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, one idea in particular stood out to me.
We are trying to make everything into a kind of work. We measure exercise and movement, calorie intake, all in an attempt to make our lives better.
The notion of the “side hustle”, where your hobby is converted into another way to make money; what is left that is just for enjoyment?
But it was this quote (which I listened to at 2.5x speed after checking my Fitbit) – “…we track our sleep now to optimize it.”
Maybe because I was aware of more specifics than “I’d had a restless night”, and that “I slept 3:47 last night” instead.
Sleep becomes fuel for health and wellness, not something that is a part of life to be enjoyed.
I’m fairly confident that the things I’m doing are worthwhile, and so optimising them is a good idea.
But I don’t want to lose the joy of the activities in the quest to make the most of time.
I’m back, yet again, to rewatching the West Wing now that there’s a podcast about it from Josh Malina and Hrishikesh Hirway (who I had heard of from his other podcast Song Exploder (try this episode about a Long Winters song “The Commander Thinks Aloud”).
This watch has been another level of insights. For a show made and written in 1999-2006, it’s a time capsule. The computers, the reach of the internet, the way that news breaks, the way that different genders interact in the workplace all seem quaint, even after only 10-15 years have passed.
And I’m spending a lot more time laughing out loud while watching.
Reading through this list of food obsessions was a trip down memory lane. I remember cooking with, or trying, a lot of the last 20 years worth.
Swiss Army Man tells the story of Hank (Paul Dano) – a man stranded on a desert island, who has given up hope of living, and Manny (Daniel Radcliffe) – a dead body. But it’s not a horror film. It’s oddly dramatic and funny; goes to some strange and dark places, but manages to keep a sense of wonder about life. It’s crass, a lot of the humour is around flatulence and other traditional male body humour, but not in the vein of more mainstream comedy movies.
Thanks to Dendy for the free ticket as part of a twitter competition.
I’ve been live-tweeting the #bbcon conference in Sydney today (and tomorrow). I spent this evening working on my weekly newsletter though, so I haven’t had a chance to summarise everything I’ve learned.
This excerpt from text expander will give you some insight into the note-taking I was doing in one session:
If you’re here because you’re trying to figure out who is tweeting, get in touch via twitter.
Movie – Star Trek Beyond (pronounced as per the Madness song)
I really wanted to like this one, but there wasn’t too much there. Plenty of visual spectacle, and some laughs, some character interaction, but there were too many scenes where my response was to think “I know who is going to win this conflict: what’s going to happen after that?” rather than be swept along in what was happening.
One for the completists only.