2018 has been an interesting year for movies. Below is my list of the top ten movies of 2018
- Widows: Women in action movies are at best the romantic significant other and at worst, the damsel in distress. Widows flips the genre and the expected narrative on its head and tells the story of four women who take fate into their own hands after the deaths of their criminal husbands.
- The Wife: Based on a book by Meg Wolitzer, Glenn Close plays a woman who questions her life choices as her husband reaches the peak of his career.
- Ralph Breaks The Internet: The sequel to Wreck-It Ralph follows Ralph (John C. Reilly) and Vanellope (Sarah Silverman) as they journey from their world of arcade games to the Internet.
- The Party: A group of friends get together to celebrate the professional success of one of them. In the process, hard emotional truths are revealed.
- Black Panther: Based on the comic book of the same name, an African King must fight for his throne while leading his country into the future.
- Vice: A biopic of former Vice President Dick Cheney.
- The Favourite: Queen Anne (Olivia Coleman) may sit on the throne of England, but she is not the one who is really leading country. Two women in her court vie to be her favorite and to gain power that only comes from being close to Queen.
- A Star Is Born: A Star Is Born is the 3rd reboot of a narrative that audiences have seen since the 1930’s. Unknown Ally (Lady Gaga) sees her career dreams turn into reality while her mentor/lover’s career flails due to addiction issues.
- Crazy Rich Asians: Based on a book by Kevin Kwan, Rachel Chu (Constance Wu) travels from New York City to meet her boyfriend’s family for the first time. The visit is a bit more turbulent than Rachel expects.
- Aquaman: Based on the comic book of the same name, Jason Mamoa plays Arthur Reed, a man who is born of two worlds and must choose where he belongs.
This will be my last post of 2018. Thank you so much for visiting and reading my blog, your support means the world. Wherever you are this New Years Eve, have a safe and happy one. I will see you in 2019.
When a book is adapted into a film, fans of the novel will often ask how close the film is to its literary predecessor.
Earlier this year, The Wife, based on the book by Meg Wolitzer hit theaters starring Glenn Close and Jonathan Pryce. Published in 2003, the book is about the breakdown of a marriage and a woman’s courage to step away from said marriage.
Joan and Joe Castleman have been married for decades. Joe is one of the preeminent writers of his generation. Joan’s writing abilities is equal to her husband’s, but she decided long ago to abandon her own dreams of writing professionally and support Joe in his career. While flying with Joe to Europe so he can receive an award for his work, Joan makes the decision to walk away from the marriage.
The narrative takes place in two different time periods: the 1950’s when Joe and Joan met and the present time, when the secret of Joe’s success and their marriage is revealed.
Full disclosure, I saw the movie before I read the book. Not surprisingly, changes were made from the narrative in the book to the narrative in the film. That being said, the book stands on its own as a testament not only to a woman’s abilities, but also the unfortunate innate inclination in heterosexual women to subvert their needs, abilities and desires to please their male significant other.
I recommend it.
For many writers, the goal is to become a professional writer in whatever genre or format they write in. But the reality is, that for every writer who has that successful career, there are many for whom writing is a side project or an unfulfilled dream.
In the new movie The Wife, (based on the book of the same name by Meg Wolitzer), Joan Castleman (Annie Starke) is an undergrad in the late 1950’s. Her professional goal is to become a writer. When she meets Elaine Mozell (Elizabeth McGovern) at an alumni event, they have a discussion about being a writer and writing. Elaine has been published, but her book only resides in the alumni library. Joan insists that writers write for the sake of writing. Elaine responds that writers write to be read.
The conversation begins at 1:16.
From my perspective, both arguments are valid. Sometimes, you write for the sake of it. You write just to get it down, regardless of quality. But, at the same time, the goal for all writers is to see their name in print, whether that is on a byline or under the title of a book.
Charlotte Bronte once said the following:
“I’m just going to write because I cannot help it”
I’m a firm believer in that whether we write to be published or write for sake of writing, it is the act of writing that matters.
Readers, what do you think? Do you write to be published or do you write just for the sake of writing? I would love to know your thoughts.
Compromise is key of any successful long-term relationship, marriage included. But what happens when one half of the relationship compromises to the point of giving themselves up to please the other half?
In the new movie, The Wife (based on the novel of the same name by Meg Wolitzer) Joan Castleman (Glenn Close) has been married to her husband Joe Castleman (Jonathan Pryce) for decades. Joe’s career as a novelist is the stuff of legends. At the beginning of the story, Joe learns that he is to receive a Nobel Prize in literature. While they are in Sweden for the awards ceremony, the secret of their marriage and Joe’s successful career comes into the light.
The film seamlessly jumps between two different time periods: The early 90’s when Joe receives his award and the late 1950’s when Joe and Joan meet. Back then Joan (Annie Starke, Glenn Close’s IRL daughter) was an undergrad who wanted to write. Joe (Harry Lloyd) was Joan’s English professor. Can this marriage survive or will the unspoken dirty laundry of the past destroy it?
This movie is absolutely brilliant, for multiple reasons. Not just because of the supposed happy marriage between Joan and Joe then unravels, but also because of the truth about many women, especially when it comes to love and marriage. In order to keep their relationship/marriage going and their partner/spouse happy, many women will subvert their needs and desires.
I absolutely recommend it. In fact, I would not be surprised if the movie did well come awards season.
The Wife is presently in theaters.
From my perspective, our early 20’s are our most formative years. We are no longer teenagers, but at the same time, we do not have the wisdom or experience that only comes with age.
In Meg Wolitzer’s new novel, The Female Persuasion, Greer Kadetsky is shy college student who meets 60’s and 70’s feminist icon Faith Frank after a lecture at Greer’s college. Greer becomes an instant fan girl. Like many young women, she is torn between personal/professional ambition and her relationship with her boyfriend, Corey. Meeting Faith ignites something in Greer and leads her, Corey and her best friend Zee on a path that no one sees coming.
I loved this book. I loved it because we can all relate to it somehow. Greer is a modern every woman, trying to make sense of it all, whether it is her relationships with Corey and Zee or the career path that she is following Faith on.
I recommend it.