Top Ten Movies (Only because I can’t think of a catchy title…)

I think it’s time for a little “light” blog post, since it’s been a while since I’ve blogged anything.

I was reflecting on what my Top Ten movies were. Because everyone has a top ten, but maybe they’ve never actually written it out.

So here is my Top Ten Favorite movies of all time:

10. Shining Through – During my teen years, I was on a huge historical kick thanks to a lot of movies and books released around that time. This is set in the 1940s during WWII. The plot surrounding the story of this man and woman and the Sherman Tank ride of their lives is surely of epic status.  There’s spy action, treachery, love, trust, betrayal, lots of running and hiding, and shooting Nazis. This was another one of those “VHS borrowed from the neighbors so my parents had to buy it for me” movies.  I recently reacquired my VHS copy of this after a long hiatus at a relative’s house.  I’m kind of excited to get to watch this again, and hope to someday upgrade this to DVD status, as I’m not completely sure about the workability of my VCR.

9. Sherlock Holmes – Back in the mid-late nineties there was a television miniseries about good ole Sherlock, and I instantly was fascinated by his mystery solving skills.  When I heard this movie was going to be released I could not wait! I went to see this in the theater, by myself actually, which was quite pleasant (you should try it sometime!).  Edge-of-my-seat-GOODNESS! I loved every minute of it! I loved the dynamic of Robert Downey Jr.’s Sherlock and Jude Law’s Watson. I loved the idiosyncrasies of their partnership that delved into their friendship and their trust of each other.  I thoroughly  loved the steampunk aspect of it as well.  I can’t wait for the sequel, and I may have to make this a 10.5 top ten list.

8. Last Holiday – Putting two of hip-hops biggest stars in one movie together? How can that not have the recipe for awesomeness?  I think why I love this so much is I see alot of myself in Queen Latifah’s character “Georgia”.  Her fears, weaknesses, dreams, aspirations…I really relate to this character.  I especially love how she throws caution to the wind after learning some devastating news and just goes on the biggest, best, most amazing holiday ever. Living it up.  Because that’s what life is all about, right? Living.

7. Kate & Leopold – Time travel.  That’s really all it took to make this one of my favorite movies. Combine that with the sweet, quirky Meg Ryan, and the handsome and debonair accented Hugh Jackman, well, I really didn’t have a chance.

6. Elf – My DVD copy of this needs to be replaced. That’s how much I love it.  It seriously gets better every single time I watch it.  Will Ferrell has me in stitches. I love the “singing in a store” and the chugging of 2-liter bottle of Coke in a single sitting, his uber hyperness, and the lovely Jovie. This actually made Zooey Deschanel one of my favorite actresses.  This is my highly recommended movies to anyone I talk to around the holidays. It will forever remain a “classic” in my book.

5. Star Trek (2009) – Parallel Universe. That’s what did it for me. I’ve always been a sci-fi fan, and even though I enjoyed Star Trek (mainly TNG), I never considered myself a Trekkie.  I didn’t have the books, the comics, or the RPG games.  But this movie quickly made me want to be a Trekkie.  A total re-imagination of the original series. I love re-imaginations. It is a great way to intrigue a whole new generation with a classic story.  They (TPTB – The Powers That Be) did that with The Wizard of Oz by introducing Tin Man, which would probably rank as No. 11 on this list if it went beyond 10.  Putting the parallel universe twist on this classic really opens it up to a whole new movie franchise for a brand new generation of “Trekkies”.  I cannot wait until a sequel arrives. Because it will.

4. Pride & Prejudice (2005) – I really loved the BBC version starring Colin Firth (because who doesn’t love Colin Firth, really now?), so I really had no desire to watch this until I watched it at a friend’s house. And absolutely fell in love with it.  In the Jane Austen realm, I consider this the “cliff’s notes” of Pride & Prejudice.  You get a great cast of characters and amazing cinematography, but it does sort of lack the depth of the character’s personalities and situations that the book and the BBC version contains.  Even so, Keira Knightly as Elizabeth and Matthew Macfayden as Mr Darcy is sublime.  Epic story. Mr Darcy’s “I love you. Most ardently,” gets me every.single.time.

3. Nacho Libre – When this movie was first released I swore I was not going to subject myself to this rubbish. It looked ridiculous and downright stupid.  I held out for over a year.  But then my boss started quoting it. And even though I had not seen it (not even clips) I thought his rendition was hilarious. Then I went to Mexico (for the second time) and the people on my trip were quoting it, and Nacho-isms kept popping up along the trip (Luchadores, Corn on a stick, etc). I think what really made me want to see it was the fact that it was filmed in Oaxaca where I had been in Mexico.  And then I watched it. And I was hooked! The BEST taglines ever! I really think it was destiny.

2. While You Were Sleeping – Bill Pullman and Sandra Bullock? How could I NOT love this movie?! I remember the very first time I saw this. It was 1995, the Saturday before the Christmas play at church. I simply fell in love with this movie, the characters, the storyline, the feel-goodness of it all.  A story of love at first sight that turns out to not be love at first sight, and the real (and often hilarious) journey to finding true love and the importance of those in your life.  A lot of people consider this one of Sandra Bullock’s least acclaimed films, but I feel that this is where she really started to build her acting skills.  She’s funny, quirky, lovable, admirable, sincere – so many things within this character.  And even today I can see little glimpses of this character in other characters she has portrayed. This movie is by far one of my favorites and will likely always remain so. I mean, it’s held the test of time for 16 years now.

1. Star Wars Trilogy (1977-1983) I know this is three separate movies, but since it is part as one epic story, it fully classifies as a singular entry. I discovered Star Wars when I was 13. I think I was the only girl in my school geeky enough to latch onto this galactic adventure. I had borrowed my neighbors VHS movies repeatedly that my parents finally got me the set for my own collection.  I have to say that Luke Skywalker was probably my “first love”, though eventually I crossed over into the Han Solo groupies.  I know I wore those VHS tapes out from watching them on a weekly basis, to the point of memorization. Then came the introduction of DVDs. I worked at Wal-Mart at the time, and was able to snatch up a boxset as soon as it was released.  To this day, it is still in my “collection”, and one of my prized possessions.  I am definitely an original trilogy fan over the prequel trilogy, although there are a few (young Obi-Wan) aspects that I enjoy of the prequels, they will never be in the Top Ten. Never.

Day 11 — A photo of you taken recently

I am a self photographer fiend.  Yes, that’s right.  Most of the pics on my iPhone are of me.  There is reason behind this madness.  You just never know when you might need a new Facebook pic at a moment’s notice!   Although this statement is entirely true, there is another reason.  I hate other people taking my photo.  I really do!  I get super nervous when I think about the end result. “Oh my gosh, that was an awful pose…I bet my eyes were crossed, or worse yet, there was a fallangy hanging out of my nose!”

The best way for me to avoid these embarrassing moments of unveiled candidness is to take my photo myself.  And then Photoshop it.  ;o)  And no I don’t put my head on a super model’s body (I mean how realistic is that!? *snort*).  But I do change the contrast, soften the photo, do a little diffuse glow, change it to black and white, or if I’m really feeling daring, a vintage retro look.

It’s in my blood.  I’m a graphic designer.  I CAN’T NOT edit a photo after I’ve taken it.  I even silently critique others photos using Photoshop in my head, thinking of ways to make the photo “pop”.

By the way, the 30 day Meme thing….not going so well.  As you can see, I started it in December and it is now March, and I’m only on day 11.

Snow (A temporary diversion)

So I thought I would take a quite detour from the 30 day Blogging Experiment (which I’ve not done so well at)!

Today’s topic is SNOW! Yes….that loverly white goodness that we’ve been blessed to have on Christmas 2009 and the after-glow of the New Year’s holiday, which is still gracing us with it’s presence.  I love snow.  But it has to be a good snow.  Not the measly flurry stuff that barely dusts the ground.  I’m talking 4″ plus! And so on Saturday night and Sunday we received a nice amount (I’m sure I had 4″ or so on my car when I cleaned it off on Monday morning).  I don’t mind the cold when there is snow to justify it.

This was Saturday night, which was probably just the first inch of what we did get.

Since this is the most snow that we’ve gotten in a few years, I wasn’t quite prepared, in that I didn’t have adequate footwear.  Living in the Midwest, we don’t typically get this much snow…usually it’s ice.  So you can manage quite well with just sneakers most days.  My shoes of late have been Chuck Taylor All-Star’s (they are comfy, and quite fashionable…and practical too).  However, they don’t do too well in rain or snow.  So last night I went in search of snow boots.  Well, you see in SWMO, there’s a problem with availability when extreme weather strikes.  In 2007, when the Historic Ice Storm hit, you couldn’t find batteries or radios anywhere in or out of the city limits!  And if you did, you paid thrice as much as it was worth.  I spent way too much money during that time.

Snow boots…well I call these my “Semi-Snow Boots” as they actually aren’t snow boots…they are waterproof and insulated men’s hiking boots, definitely not my first choice, but they’ll do for this season.

Then maybe I can get me some fashionable Queen Latifah-like snow boots.  *g*

Day 05 — Your favorite quote

Day 05 — Your favorite quote

These topic starters are really making me think!  My favorite quote.  I don’t think I can narrow it down to just one, as with all the previous “favorites” I’ve listed.  So let me just tell you about some of my favorite quotations.

“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.” Matthew 28:19-20a.  This is our calling as children of the Most High God.  Jesus is the one talking here, telling us what it is that we are to do now that we are co-heirs with Him in glory.  What I like about this scripture is that he isn’t talking just to His disciples, but to those who have yet to be born.  “…go and make disciples of all nations.”  Not…”Preachers, go and make disciples…” or “Missionaries, go and make disciples…” or even “Religious people, go and make disciples…”.  Simply “…GO AND MAKE DISCIPLES OF ALL NATIONS.”  To me that means all of us who have accepted Him as our Savior King.  We’ve been given this amazing gift of freedom, love, riches in glory, why wouldn’t we want to go and tell everyone about this and help them to come to know all this and more as well?

Another favorite quote, or more appropriately scripture, is “(The LORD) Who satisfies your mouth [your necessity and desire at your personal age and situation] with good so that your youth, renewed, is like the eagle’s [strong, overcoming, soaring]!” Psalm 103:5 (The Amplified Version).  This has been a favorite of mine for a couple of years.  This is like a personal letter from God to me.  He’s telling me that no matter how old I am or what my current life situation may be, He will satisfy me in all areas that I feel like I’m lacking .  Like right now, I’m 29, and single, and the deepest desire of my heart is to marry a man of God who meets all my “requirements”.  I get lonely often, because I’m not there yet.  And even in my loneliest, darkest times, His Spirit speaks comfort to my heart, letting me know that He’s got me.  And that my desires (of which He’s placed in my heart) will be fulfilled in His time, always on time, and never late.  And I’m sure a few years down the road when I am finally married to “the one”, I will be desiring children.  And again at that time, the Lord will again satisfy the desires of my heart and send comfort until He fulfills those desires.  So because I believe this with strong certainty, I will be young in spirit and even physically.  I don’t feel my age, and I don’t even think I look my age.  I contribute that to this verse.  I believe that this gives me strength to overcome and have faith for anything.

My final favorite is a combination of two scriptures from Proverbs: “for wisdom is more precious than rubies, and nothing you desire can compare with her”, Proverbs 8:11 and Proverbs 31:10 “Who can find a virtuous wife? For her worth is far above rubies.”   The fact that the writer of this book used fine gems, rubies, to compare to wisdom and a wife are two very important aspects.  I think it means that the writer wanted to convey that for a man to have wisdom and to have a virtuous wife is an extremely valuable gift.  He says about wisdom “nothing you can desire can compare with her”.  A man should not desire anything more in life than wisdom or a wife whose “worth is far above rubies”.  It shows how valuable God holds wisdom and women.

Day 04 — Your favorite book

Day 04 — Your favorite book

My favorite book…Wow that really is a hard one.  I don’t have just one particular favorite.  I guess I need to break this down into what books I’ve read and re-read the most, and my current favorite that I’ve recently read and would like to read again.

First, the book(s) that I’ve read the most again and again over the years are Star Wars, the original trilogy novel consisting of “From the Adventures of Luke Skywalker” by Alan Dean FosterGeorge Lucas (a.k.a. “A New Hope”), The Empire Strikes Back by Donald F. Glut, and Return of the Jedi by James Kahn.  I discovered this when I was in Junior High at age 13.  Most thirteen year old girls aren’t the least bit interested in reading, let alone reading Science Fiction.  But I was, and that labeled me as an outcast.  But who really cares anymore about that.

Another book series that I’ve read repeatedly over the years is The Westmoor Heights Series consisting of three books entitled, respectively, Stormy Leigh, Stormy’s Desire, and Stormy’s Temptation by Sharon Foster.  This is a Christian romance series detailing a girl’s life, Stormy, spanning about ten or fifteen years, beginning at age 25.  It is a story of faith, patience, trials, family, standing up for what you believe in, not giving up, and most importantly, love.   I received these for Christmas when I was 12 or 13.  I immediately read the first two books back to back within the week.  The third book I didn’t get until several years later, after I wrote Sharon Foster personally telling her how much I enjoyed the books and asking her where I might find a copy of it.  Since they were all out of print, she kindly mailed me the third book with a hand written note thanking me.  It was very inspiring that an acclaimed author would take the time to do that.  It has meant the world to me all these years later.  I highly recommend this series.  It is quite the tear-jerker too! 🙂

Most recently however, I finished a series by popular Christian author Dee Henderson, The O’Malley Chronicles, comprising of six books about the seven O’Malley children.  As adults, this motley crew of professional heroes discover the value of family as well as faith in the One true Savior.  The first book is about Kate O’Malley, the FBI’s most trusted and successful hostage negotiator.  Book 2, is about Marcus O’Malley, big brother, and head of the O’Malley “clan”, a United States Marshall.  The third installment is about forensic specialist, Lisa O’Malley, the sibling with the big heart.  The fourth book is about fearless fire fighter Jack O’Malley.  Book five brings us to Rachel O’Malley, a Red Cross disaster counselor and specialist.  Finally book six is Stephen’s story, the most stubborn and sensitive of them all, he is a Paramedic who thrives at saving lives…except one that he values the most.  All of these stories are meshed together by a sister who’s desire is to see them all know the Savior that she loves before it’s too late for them all.  This series is extremely well written and very detailed with imagery.  If you like dramas like CSI or ER, you will love this.

And finally my favorite non-fiction selection is by Michelle McKinney Hammond, In Search of the Proverbs 31 Man: The One God Approves and a Woman Wants. Why do I like this book…well the title says it all.  I’m searching for my Proverbs 31 man.  It really takes two points of views, the girl looking for this ideal husband, and the man and what he should strive to be like.  I really enjoyed Michelle’s comparisons of the Proverbs 31 woman and her counterpart.  It really stepped up my expectations for my future husband, and what I cannot and will not settle for.

Day 03 — Your favorite television program

Day 03 — Your favorite television program

My favorite tv show used to be Stargate SG-1 when it was on the air.  I watched all 10 seasons of it (albeit the last two, I caught on DVD).  And then it was Stargate Atlantis, but I still haven’t seen the entire 4th or 5th seasons.  I will someday when they are not so expensive on DVD.  I had fangirl crushes on Richard Dean Anderson, Michael Shanks, Ben Browder and David Hewlett.  Mainly the “so smart they’re sexy” guys.  Did I just say sexy??!  Hah.

But I regress…my favorite show(s) to date are Grey’s Anatomy, NCIS, NCIS:LA, and (sometimes) The Big Bang Theory.

Grey’s Anatomy is a new favorite.  From the first episode I saw this past summer, I was instantly mesmerized by the characters and the storyline twist and turns.  I just can’t wait to see what obscure illnesses or diagnosis’ are introduced and solved in each episode.   I’m a McDreamy fan as well as a McSteamy fan.  And I really liked George O’Malley…what a guy!

NCIS has been  a favorite for years.  I am so intrigued by the criminal investigations that are based around the military. The team has such a dynamic after all they’ve been through … losing team members who are like family, murder plots, amnesia, treason, and too many situations to name.  And yet they bounce back time and again because of their loyalty for one another and for the need to do good.  Abby is my role model.  And McGee…find me one of him!

NCIS: Los Angeles…it’s like NCIS on steroids.  Part of that may have to do with LL Cool J. 😉  But seriously…the storylines are more intense, the action is on the edge of your seat, the technology is so awesome, the guys have more muscles, and they have a way cool theme song! 🙂

And finally, Big Bang Theory.  I so loved season one, and season two.  However, come season three the writers had to go and do the one thing that can kill the chemistry of the show and the characters and the watchability…they stuck the main characters in bed together.  This plot twist just, well, ruined it for me.  I used to look forward to Mondays at 7:30.  Now I hope for old reruns…how sad is that?  But I still enjoy Sheldon.  He makes it worth muddling through the stinky parts. 🙂