Making sense

Anne Lamott, on writing ...

"We are a species that needs and wants to understand who we are. Sheep lice do not seem to share this longing, which is one reason why they write so little. But we do. We have so much we want to say and figure out.”

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Movie #1 of 2015

Labor Day

I'd been looking forward to the release of this movie after reading Joyce Maynard's book of the same name, which, BTW, she'd outlined (written?) in eight weeks while at the MacDowell Colony in New Hampshire. Loved the book. Moderately liked the movie. (Release date: Jan. 31, 2014 ... I watched it on Netflix ...yay Google Fiber! ... two days ago, after my husband went to bed at 8:05 p.m. Once a farm boy, always a farm boy, but I digress.)
Look. I'll see anything with Kate Winslet in it, 'cause I'm a fan, and cutie-pie Josh Brolin is always a draw. Anything promising romance, even if it's not believable, is an additional perk.
The basic premise is this: It's a hot Labor Day weekend in 1987 and Henry needs his mom, played by Winslet, to drive him into town to pick up stuff for school. After Winslet's character, Adele, has a mild panic attack in the driveway, and again in the parking lot of the discount store, the two eventually make their way into the store, where 13-year-old Henry is calmly accosted by Brolin's fresh-out-of-prison escapee, who's limping and wearing a blood-stained white tee.
Because this is a movie, Brolin ends up riding home with Adele and Henry, where the plan is he'll lie low for the evening. He ties Winslet up rather loosely and already the attraction starts to build. Okaaaaaaay. Having already read the book, I knew this was coming, but it was too weird to accept from my armchair in my living room. (I was glad to be watching the movie by myself.)
Soon, a non-descript neighbor brings over a bushel of peaches and a warning to Henry to watch out for the escaped convict. In no time at all, the con and his new family prepare pie crust, peel peaches, and as a threesome carry out an unsettling let's-make-a-pie-and-get-that-baby-in-the-oven scene that is kinda hard to watch.
Regardless, I kept on with the movie because I couldn't remember how the book ended. That's the thing about having Adult ADD and living a menopausal life: I can't remember shit.
Labor Day's ending-ending is nice, although you have to wonder if it's truly possible to carry a 15-year torch for someone who kidnapped you, tied you up, fed you chili, changed the oil in your wood-sided station wagon (the convict is a handyman), made sweet love to you one night (really?), and taught your kid not only how to make pie, but be so good at it, and changed  by the process, that years down the road the kid is a successful pie entrepreneur.
But Labor Day is only a movie. Not terribly bad for my first movie of the new year. I've seen worse.

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