- Shutter Island, $22.2 million
- Cop Out, $18.6 million
- The Crazies, $16.5 million
- Avatar, $14 million
- Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief, $9.8 million
- Valentine’s Day, $9.51 million
- Dear John, $5 million
- The Wolfman, $4.12 million
- Tooth Fairy, $3.45 million
- Crazy Heart, $2.54 million
Monthly archives for February, 2010
Plot summary (with possible spoilers): Jane Adler (played by Meryl Streep) is a 50-something divorcée who runs a successful bakery. Her life seems to be going well: daughter Lauren (Caitlin Fitzgerald) is engaged to a nice man named Harley (John Krasinski), middle daughter Gabby (Zoe Kazan) seems to have things together, and youngest son Luke (Hunter Parrish) has just graduated from college. The only thing missing from Jane’s life is sex, something she hasn’t had since divorcing Jake (Alec Baldwin) 10 years ago.
Jake is now married to the much younger Agnes (Lake Bell), but is having problems on the home front. So when he finds himself alone in New York with Jane on the eve of Luke’s graduation, it’s easy to slip back into old routines — especially with the help of several bottles of wine and countless martinis. The two end up sleeping together. Jane thinks it was a huge mistake, but Jake enjoyed it. He pursues her back to L.A., where they sleep together again. Jane is now officially the “other woman”, just as Agnes was the other woman that broke up the marriage in the first place.
Much to Jane’s surprise, she finds that she’s actually having fun with Jake again. They continue their affair, agreeing to hide things from the children for the time being. But things get a bit more complicated when Jane’s architect Adam (a very subdued Steve Martin) starts having feelings for her. She has a great date with Adam and is now torn between the two men.
The situation unfolds much as you’d expect, with Jake eventually leaving Agnes for Jane. But Jane isn’t sure she wants to go down that same road again, so she doesn’t commit to Jake. Instead, they agree that maybe they don’t belong together and Jane ends up giving Adam a chance.
- Meryl Streep was great, as usual. I don’t think I’ve been disappointed with her performance in any film that I’ve seen her in. I don’t go out of my way to watch her movies, but whenever I catch them, I’m always impressed.
- I liked that the partners in this rom-com were mostly age-appropriate. Yes, Agnes was much younger, but that was a deliberate choice used to show Jake’s midlife crisis.
- The secondary characters didn’t have much to do, but I thought Harley was funny. Yes, he was basically just Jim Halpert providing reaction shots to what was going on with the main characters, but still… I laughed at a him several times.
- The entire film prepared us for Jane and Jake to be together. They clearly had fun together and Adam was so much on the periphery that it was natural to root for Jane and Jake to work. So it was kind of weird to see Jane and Adam end up together. That was not the pairing I wanted.
- The film was about 30 minutes too long. There’s no way a romantic comedy needs to go on for two hours!
- Alec Baldwin naked.
It’s Complicated is anything but. It’s a straightforward romantic comedy featuring some older cast members, and plays out pretty much by the numbers. It’s fairly entertaining for the most part, but doesn’t do anything to warrant a very high rating. I give it 3 stars out of 5.
Burn Notice 3×15: — “Good Intentions”: This was a pretty good episode! I loved how Fiona was featured for once, as she is quickly becoming a favorite (right behind Michael). Her storyline was great, and she got to work with Tony Almeida! Carlos Bernard was a quality guest star. He made me feel sorry for his character even as I hated what he was doing to Fi, which goes to show how well he handled the role. Glad they saved him in the end, along with the hostage. I bet after several days in captivity, that guy wished he sold POS systems or used cars or something other than pharmaceuticals!
As for Michael’s stuff… wow, I wasn’t expecting Gilroy to die so soon! I wonder who this Simon guy is, as he seems pretty damn dangerous and resourceful. I was surprised at how the prisoner intercept was handled. I thought Gilroy was going to infiltrate the airport as they stopped for refueling. I didn’t know he had people on the plane to divert it and quickly hand Simon over. That seemed… odd. Anyway, I’m glad Gilroy opted to save Michael in the end by warning him to run away. But — was I the only one waiting for him to tell Mike the account number for the $10 million as well? Ha! I guess that couldn’t happen though because then Mike, Sam, and Fi wouldn’t have to take all the odd jobs, which of course makes up the bulk of each ep.
Can’t wait till next week!
Lost 6×05 — “Lighthouse”: Meh, this episode was a mixed bag for me. Once again, I found the off island stuff more compelling, but some of the island stuff was a bit more interesting this time around. I usually hate episodes that heavily feature Jack because I think the character is insufferable. However, he wasn’t as bad this time — in the alternate universe, at any rate. He seemed to really care about his son(!) and made a concerted effort not to be like his own boozing jackass of a dad. Gotta give him credit for that — especially after the vision we saw in the very first flash-forward where a drunk, pill-poppin’ Jack told Kate they were never supposed to leave the island. Remember that???
Hurley has never been one of my favorite characters either, so between him and Jack being on the screen so much, I was this close to turning the damn thing off. Yeah, he’s funny at times, but his “Dude” shtick got old a long time ago. Also, whenever I look at him I can’t help but wonder why he hasn’t lost any weight. I know the island has food stores and whatnot, but still… you’d think that being stranded on a deserted island that’s not even on any world maps would serve as a pretty effective fat burner, right? Not in Hurley’s case.
At any rate, the lighthouse was kinda cool, as it showed us how Jacob was able to watch all the candidates for all those years. But of course dumbass Jack had to smash it to bits before anyone else had a chance to look at it and understand what it does. What was the point of his temper tantrum? The damage (i.e. Jacob watching his childhood house) had been done long ago. Idiot.
Oh, and is it just me or does anyone else agree that this season has been decidedly short on answers thus far? It doesn’t seem like any of the mysteries are being revealed at all — and time continues to run out on the series. Dare I hope that there’s a legitimate reason for all the island happenings? Please don’t tell me the whole point is just to find the next guardian of a deserted frickin’ island!!!!
My brother’s birthday is coming up soon, so I’m starting to shop around for potential gifts. This morning I saw this Lord of the Rings Trilogy Blu-ray set, and immediately thought of him. He has been a fan of that series ever since he was a kid and read all the books back-to-back. I know he loved the movies too, so I’m guessing he would appreciate having all three installments — The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King — on Blu-ray. I’m pretty sure he has the standard DVD versions already, but he just got a Blu-ray player recently, so this could still be a good buy.
Unfortunately, the product description was a bit lacking here, which means I have no idea what the DVDs contain besides the movies themselves. Are there bonus features? Probably, but which ones? Interviews with cast and crew? Outtakes? Deleted scenes? Screen tests for the principal actors? I really have no idea — not that it would matter much to my brother, I’m sure! He would just be thrilled to have the movies on high-quality Blu-ray discs.
Anyway, right now the Lord of the Rings Trilogy is on sale for $70.94, which is almost 30% off the list price. That sounds a bit more expensive than the regular DVDs would be, but as a total Blu-ray convert myself, I’m sure it’s worth it!
Well, I better start snooping around to see if my brother already has this set. If he doesn’t, I think this is what I’ll get him for his b-day!
24 8×09 — 12am – 1am: While this episode didn’t have any twists or great scenes, at least a lot of the action got moved forward. In particular, I was glad to see Dana finally come clean to Cole about her fake name. I thought that might have dragged out for another ep, which would have been a big mistake. And it’s good that the rednecks are out of the picture now. The only loose end there is what Cole is going to do about Dana. Will he protect her or will he turn her in? I’m thinking he’ll protect her. After all, that’s what he was set to do when he offered the trailer park boys immunity in the first place.
As soon as they showed Owen, I knew Jack would end up leading the tac team. That kid looked like he was 22 at the most… no experience there at all. Then again, wasn’t it a given right from the beginning that Jack would be involved until the end? Why do the writers even bother pretending that it would be any other way?
Not interested in the nuclear rods at all. Now the show is setting up for a strike on a domestic target. Yawn… been there, done that a couple of times in the 24 world. How about something a bit different?
Is Renee going to walk around in a funk for the rest of the season? I am already tired of her shell-shocked look. Please let her snap out of this soon!
Burn Notice 3×14: — “Partners in Crime”: I didn’t really like this episode. I thought the job of the week was pretty mundane, and except for Sam pulling off a hilarious Horatio Caine impression, there wasn’t anything notable about that portion of the program. I thought the part involving Conrad the Polish agent was kinda dumb, too, especially how the guy simply bought Fiona’s cover without ANY questions at all. She just walked up to him, pretended like she knew what was going on, and he starts spilling the beans? How could he have lasted that long as a spy???
I do have to say that this Gilroy arc is proving to be a bit more intriguing than any of the past season-long arcs. Much better than Carla, that’s for sure. I wonder who this “dangerous prisoner” is and why there are such clear directions for how to deal with him. Do not engage in any conversation whatsoever? Sounds like a Hannibal Lecter type. Can’t wait for the payoff on that one!
- Shutter Island, $40.2 million
- Valentine’s Day, $17.2 million
- Avatar, $16.1 million
- Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, $15.3 million
- The Wolfman, $9.85 million
- Dear John, $7.3 million
- Tooth Fairy, $4.5 million
- Crazy Heart, $3.02 million
- From Paris With Love, $2.5 million
- Edge of Darkness, $2.21 million
About two years ago, a friend of mine lost her husband in a freak accident. As you can imagine, that was just about the most devastating thing that could have happened to a homemaker with two young children to care for. But things got worse when she realized her husband’s meager life insurance policy would barely cover funeral expenses. She had to sell her home and move back in with her parents, which further turned her children’s lives upside down. It was a terrible ordeal all around, but at least it helped me open my eyes about my own situation. I wanted to make sure nothing like that ever happened to my family.
You can’t ward off unexpected death, of course, but you can make sure you have a very good insurance policy in place to help keep your finances stable in the aftermath. One of the first things I did after coming back from that funeral two years ago was sit down with my husband and go over the policies we had. As I feared, they were woefully insufficient, and wouldn’t allow either one of us to keep the household going on a single income. So we decided to review some life insurance company ratings online and change our policy to something far more comprehensive.
I can’t remember the exact site we went to back then, but it was very similar to LifeInsuranceStar.com. We were able to look at a single table and compare trusted companies like Allstate, Geico, Banner Life, New York Life, State Farm, The Travelers, and MetLife at a glance. We were then able to get additional details about specific policies from the companies we liked the most, and we ended up buying the best life insurance policy we could afford. We plan to continue comparing our current policy to others every year or so, and will buy more coverage whenever feasible.
Death is an uncomfortable subject for most people, but this is a conversation that responsible folks must have with their partners. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to treat life insurance as an “extra” that you only purchase when everything else is taken care of. Cable television is an extra. The iPhone 3GS is an extra. But a good life insurance policy is a necessity.
As everybody who watches the TV show Lost knows, we are currently in the midst of the sixth and final season. The show’s creators, producers, and writers decided two years ago that it would take six seasons to tell their story, so the end is not due to poor ratings or anything like that. Plus, with everyone knowing exactly how much time is left, the writers have promised to answer the most important mysteries surrounding the strange island that has been home to the survivors of Oceanic Flight 815 for the past few years. I can’t wait to see what they have in store!
I already know that Lost is going to be one of those shows that I’ll have to watch again and again on DVD in order to catch all the clues, hints, and allusions dropped in each episode. It seems that all the characters have crossed paths numerous times before, and so much has happened that I can’t keep everything straight. The long stretches between seasons doesn’t help my memory either, so I’m sure to benefit from watching everything back-to-back. That’s why I’m planning on pre-ordering Lost: The Complete Collection on DVD.
The Complete Collection is not complete yet, of course, as there are still 20 or so eps left in the final season. But this DVD set is already in the works, and is scheduled to be released on 8/24/2010. It will contain all the episodes from each season, and will be sure to have a bunch of bonus features too. I can’t wait to see what the creators put in there — hopefully there will be tons of explanations for all the mysteries!
Anyway, as I said, the Lost: Complete Collection DVD set won’t actually go on sale until late August, but I’m going to pre-order it from Buy.com before that. It’s going for $151.99 on that site, which is $78 off the suggested list price of $229. Sounds good to me! I can’t wait to go through the entire series again to finally figure out what all this is about!