Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Nancy Drew-book turned film

My daughter loves the Nancy Drew Books, and because of that, I was rather hesitant to see the film from 2007. How could the charms of Nancy Drew remain intact when so many other classic books have been so distorted? Our library had a copy in, and we took the plunge.

Much to my surprise, I loved this movie. It was sweet, it was clever, and it was a bit hokey, but in a very charming way. Nancy is a fish out of water in California, who proudly proclaims "she likes old things", and she never sways from her ideals. She does not bow to the pressures around her, and is not ashamed to be different.

There is nothing really special about the plot, a simple mystery but told in a delightful way. Even the boys in our house enjoyed the film, it was exciting enough for them. Pre-teen girls and Young teens will enjoy Nancy Drew, and moms will enjoy watching it with them.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Akeelah and the Bee

Akeelah and the Bee, 2006

We watched it last night, the girls (7, 9 and 13) and I. We loved it!

A sweet movie, with a young main actress who was very, very good! We could not established how much exactly it is (or it is not) based on a true story-- but it was a good show!

If your family likes spelling challenges, Scrabble and word origins like our family does, you will enjoy this film!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Saint Rita

Saint Rita DVD Cover

When I was visiting my parents this past summer, my mother and I watched the movie Saint Rita on EWTN. It was a long movie and it was shown late in the evening in two parts. It therefore took us two days to watch the movie my DS had taped for us.

We enjoyed the movie so much that when I got back to Hawaii, I headed straight to the Daughters of St. Paul a/k/a Pauline Books and Media, and bought it for my family to watch.

I shared with my husband that Saint Rita was never one of my favorite saints. But that changed after watching this movie. I couldn't read enough about her. I read every story about Saint Rita that my mom had on her bookshelves and we also bought the book from Tan books. One thing that most of stories I read seemed to agree that Rita had an abusive husband. Since this movie did not really portray Paolo as a physically abusive husband, I looked on the internet to find out more about her marital situation. I did find out from one source that there was not concrete proof that her husband was in fact abusive toward her. However, I was in NJ at the time and do not have the link available here.

The following is a description of this movie:
The story of the beloved patron of hopeless situations comes to life in this epic film starring Vittoria Belvedere (Pope John Paul II, The Apocalypse) and Martin Crewes. Rita is a beautiful young woman who longs to enter the convent but when she meets Paolo, a handsome knight, she accepts his offer of marriage. Her new family isn't as welcoming as she would wish and she soon finds that her husband's brothers are involved in violence and murder. Determined to reform her husband, Rita succeeds in winning him over. She and Paolo are blessed with two sons and living happily when tragedy strikes...and Rita loses everything. Set against he turbulent background of 15th century Italy, this story of forgiveness, faith, and virtue is an inspiring tribute to this brave, saintly woman.
The only criticism I have about this movie is the fact that when someone does have a conversion of heart and asks for forgiveness, for example after killing someone, a priest is not present; Rita is the one who listens to the cry for forgiveness. My son counters that it is to be understood that the individual goes to confession.

I was also wondering why Saint Rita is named Patron Saint of Impossible Causes. It was only after watching the movie a second time did it become clear on many occasions. I will leave it at that.

We watched the movie in English with English subtitles (my family's favorite way to watch a movie). However, I am not sure if some of the actors were speaking Italian and some English. Hard to tell in what language it was filmed in. My guess would be both languages.

My husband commented that the intrigue, storyline would be one that one would find in a movie about the Mafia such as The Godfather. It is an intriguing movie and will have the excitement of any epic movie.

This movie would not be suitable for young children. I think it would be more for teens and up.

Ignatius Press has a trailer