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Wednesday
May252011

Hyland Cinema Showcases Festival Darlings from Oscar Season

London’s Hyland Cinema was highlighted on this blog in April for a nice movie review that offered visitors a glimpse of the venue from a customer’s perspective. This weeks lineup at the theater continues to show how much little known films from around the world are given a chance to shine next to Hollywood box office hits that are screening and getting most of the media attention. Starting Friday, Hyland Cinema is showing Oscar contenders in the Best Foreign Language film category as well as a late night screening of Bruce Lee’s famous film “Enter the Dragon.”

Among the foreign language films are “When We Leave” about a mother and her son trying to live a better life but face tragedy as a result of the conservative religious and cultural beliefs of their family. This movie, which won Best Narrative Feature at the 2010 Tribeca Film Festival, is said to be based on a real-life honor killing that took place in Berlin.

The other foreign language film that put a bid in for Oscar gold is “Even in the Rain” from Spain (hey, that rhymes! nevermind.), a film about Christopher Columbus’s voyage to America. The subject seems to expand into multiple stories since the movie made during a time when Cochabamba, Bolivia was going through a water war. In April, The Wine Country Film Festival showed “Even in the Rain” as part of it’s 25th anniversary celebration.

Now that the Hyland Cinema is bringing these films to more audiences, it gives those who missed the film festival screenings another chance to see titles that many locals were likely unfamiliar with while watching the Oscars back in February.

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Tuesday
May242011

My Top 5 Favorite Places to Write

WordCount Blogathon

What are your five favorite places to write? This is the general topic for today’s theme during the WordCount Blogathon that I am currently participating in, which caused me to really think about all of the places where I write and then compare them all to figure out which ones are the locations that I like the most. Here are my five favorite places to write everything and anything from blog posts, freelance articles, love letters and screenplays to grocery shopping lists, poetry and parody songs....in no particular order.

1. On the Bus

First, let me get something straight.....I hate buses. Now that we have this out of the way, I do find bus rides to be useful places to write in some circumstances. In fact, I wrote my Day 17 blog post (and a portion of my Day 19 post) for the WordCount Blogathon while riding a bus out of town......all on an iPod. I figured that I might as well write to pass the time since there is not much else to do while on a long bus ride.

WordCount Blogathon,Helpful Reading and Research

2. A Family Member’s House

When floppy disks were still popular among computer users, I filled a lot of them with my writings and often completed the task while visiting relatives. I’ve written at least two screenplays using a family member’s computer and have usually enjoyed the process. In such a setting, I get the best of both worlds.....the ability to write in a remote location and also the comfort of a home-like atmosphere.

WordCount Blogathon,Writing

3. The Library

Since many public libraries are only open during afternoon hours, there is something about having this limited time-frame that I have found to be rather beneficial to my writing activities. Being allowed to work on a computer for only 20 minutes up to 60 minutes maximum can sometimes be the driving force necessary to make sure that I am being productive.

The small window of computer access does not leave much room for idle time, which is a great way to influence me to work on some of my writing in advance before visiting the library so all I have to do is type it up or produce a final draft. I also like to write at the library because it is like an automatic source for references and research material.

If there is a word that I am not familiar with or some historical facts that need to be checked before referencing them in an article, blog post, screenplay, etc. I need not look any further than a public library.

4. My Apartment

This is a no-brainer because if it’s raining or snowing or late in the evening and I do not feel like going out, all of my writing can be done in the comfort of my own home. Much like the public libraries, my home has a lot of resources and supplies that I can utilize during the writing process.....some of which other places, including relatives houses may not have available. These resources include notebooks, pens, pencils, highlighters, markers, magazines, index cards, my favorite books on screenwriting and other tools that help me get work done without needing to travel.

WordCount Blogathon,Writing

5. The Movie Theater

Okay, so this one is a bit distracting because the whole point of going to the theater is to watch the movie....right? However, I brought a notepad with me and wrote down notes about a movie that I had to write a review on (It was “Hanna,” for all of you nosey people, lol) in hopes of obtaining a weekly writing gig for a media company.

I did not think that I would remember some of the important points that I wanted to make or key aspects of the movie that I wanted to cover. So, while this may have been an odd thing to do and was certainly a little difficult experience because I had to write whenever there was a bright scene that added more light into the theater, it is productive enough to make my list of five favorite places to write.

What are some of the best places for YOU to write?

Does the ideal location to write depend on what is being written or do you think that people can and should write wherever and whenever they are inspired to do so?

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Monday
May232011

Writers in the Movies

Screenwriting is an essential part of the movie making process, so it can be even more exciting to watch films with plots that incorporate authors or other types of writers in one way or another. This week, The Bumbles asks to share movies on our blogs that feature “writers authors, poets and scribes.” I considered highlighting a film like “Sex and the City: The Movie” based on Carrie’s writing career but I think that is way too easy. So, here are two other movies that fit the writing bill a little more closely and have more complex plots than this Sarah Jessica Parker centered box office hit.

Love Jones

Monday Movie Meme,WordCount Blogathon

Starring Nia Long and Larenz Tate, “Love Jones” is among the best dating movies because it is not overly sappy so it has enough depth to avoid being classified as a chick flick. This movie is about a budding photographer who relocates to a new city, where she meets an author who is working on his first book. As the story progresses, the ups and downs of their relationship seem to also have an impact on the career decisions that each character makes.

The couple and their friends also frequent a jazz club where they socialize and enjoy live poetry performances.....a main staple throughout the movie. In fact, poetry is how the two main characters first got acquainted and later becomes the vehicle that opens up a major turning point in their lives.

Perfect Stranger

Monday Movie Meme,WordCount Blogathon

This crime thriller starring Halle Berry and Bruce Willis is a shocker that seems to use writing as the foundation or background for everything else in the story. Berry plays an journalist who goes undercover as a temp worker at an advertising firm owned by a man who she suspects has murdered her best friend.

She poses as two different women to try and catch him but the deeper her personal investigation gets, the more dangerous this movie becomes for the characters involved. I watched this movie based on the recommendation of a friend and while I liked it.....it’s a bit creepy so I doubt I’ll watch it again.....unless I’m really jonesing to get another look at Bruce Willis!

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