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Sunday, November 22, 2009

MOVIE REVIEW: My One and Only

Hmm. It appears that the movie My One and Only is now available on DVD at least at Target and from Blockbuster. Odd, since I just saw it on Veterans Day at the Spectrum Theatre and in fact it is STILL playing there once a day.
The movie is about Anne Deveraux (Renée Zellweger) who, discovering her philandering husband, Dan (Kevin Bacon) in the act, decides to take her two sons, George (Logan Lerman) and Robbie (Mark Rendall) on an adventure which largely consists of traveling from city to city trying to find a husband for herself. In their "adventure" from their home in New York to Boston to Pittsburgh to St. Louis and eventually Hollywood, she finds guys (played by, among others, Steven Weber and Chris Noth), who seem promising at first.

This is a pleasant enough film. The problem is that, at least until they get to St. Louis, I always thought I was watching Renée rather than Anne. Also the situations had a certain sameness - Robbie gets in the school play, Robbie leaves before the production can be mounted. The other problem is that I thought the travelogue of 1950s-style postcards, which happens in the very beginning of the film - my reveal was hardly a spoiler - both tells too much and seems to be trying too hard to prove the movie is authentic to the period.

Still, the latter part of the film is the most satisfying. You may know that this is the largely true story about a noted actor. I had heard this before I watched it but I had forgotten; it was more satisfying not knowing. This is one of those two and a half stars out of four flicks. Oh, and if you do see it, avoid the trailer - it's on the movie's website - which, as these things do, reveals WAY too much.
I've had a particularly busy stretch. Saturday, November 14, we had the dress rehearsal of the Faure requiem, after four Sunday night rehearsals. Then Saturday night, our friends couldn't go to to the Albany Symphony and gave us their tickets. So we arranged for a babysitter and went to the Palace Theatre in Albany. On the way in, we happened to see the conductor scurrying to the locale from a pre-concert talk.

The first piece is almost always new, sometimes avant garde, and occasionally just peculiar. Stacy Garrop's Becoming Medusa, a tone poem, was not only listenable, she actually described the piece competently; too often, I've heard composers offer an incoherent rambling. She is the Mellon-supported Composer-Educator Partner.

But the star of the evening was George Li, the pianist on Saint Saëns' Piano Concerto No. 2. He showed energy, passion and lyricism in his play. Did I mention he was only 14, and looked about 11? We saw him on our way out of the theater.

Everyone in the audience was offered a glass of wine during intermission, after which, Brahms Symphony No. 2 was performed, which, according to the program "features one of the greatest of all cello melodies in its second movement."
Sunday afternoon, the Faure, which went well.
Sunday night, Lydia got sick. She coughed all night, and I could not sleep all night; there IS a correlation. So I stayed home with her Monday all day and half of Tuesday. Played Uno to 1000 (she won) - do you know how long it can take to play Uno to 1000? and also Sorry and Candyland; she's well enough to need to be occupied. Took her to the doctor on Monday; he recommended a cough syrup I had previously tried, to no great effect, but I tried it again Monday night. She, almost immediately, threw up. Then a few minutes later, threw up again, which was actually, from a medical POV, productive, as she FINALLY stopped coughing.

But I felt obliged to tell the in-laws who were going to watch Lydia Tuesday night, and they opted out.
So we had tickets to see The 39 Steps at Proctors Tuesday night, but no babysitter. Carol tried to find friends to go with her to the show, but was ultimately unsuccessful. So I asked my friend the Hoffinator at 4:15 pm if she wanted to go, and she said yes. Had a great time; the review of the show is here.


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