the movie tag

{I ripped this tag out of a library book  took this tag from Sidewalk Crossings.  Thanks, DKoren!}

Because ‘Hugo’ (2011) is a movie about movies.


~Favourite foreign film –The Lady Vanishes’ (1938), a British film directed by Alfred Hitchcock.

~Most underrated film  So many!  There’s one gem of a WWII film, ‘Saints & Soldiers’ (2003) that I wish was better known.  There’s also Disney’s ‘Robin Hood’ (1973), ‘The Great Mouse Detective’ (1986), and ‘Meet the Robinsons’ (2007).  And the Air Bud film franchise (forget Air Buddies, though).

~A film that makes you happy – I’ve got some films I call “mac ‘n’ cheese movies” like ‘The Magnificent Seven’ (1960), both of the Anne of Green Gables movies (the Kevin Sullivan ones, of course), ‘The Happiest Millionaire’ (1967), ‘State Fair’ (1945), the second and third Night at the Museum movies, and ‘Cars’ (2006).  All of those make me enormously happy.  (By the way, I call them “mac ‘n’ cheese movies” ’cause they’re like comfort food for me.  Only movies.)  ‘The Outsiders’ (1983) also makes me happy, but in a different way.

~A film that makes you sad – Um…just one? *looks at DVD shelf for inspiration* ‘The Great Locomotive Chase’ (1956) was pretty devastating when I was younger (especially for a Disney film, of all things) and while it doesn’t hit me in the exact same way anymore (now that I’ve got movies like ‘Schindler’s List’ (1993) and ‘Titanic’ (1997) and ‘The Ox-Bow Incident’ (1943) under my belt) it still saddens me.  So I’m going to go with that.

~Favourite love story in a film – Currently?  Mr. Knightley and Emma Woodhouse from BBC’s ‘Emma’ (2009), Don and Kathy from ‘Singin’ in the Rain’ (1952), and Flynn and Rapunzel from ‘Tangled’ (2010).

~Favourite actor/actress – Favorite old Hollywood actor: Dana Andrews (with James Coburn in second place).  Favorite old Hollywood actress: Audrey Hepburn (with Ingrid Bergman in second place).  Favorite modern actor: TomCruiseandHarrisonFord.  Favorite modern actress: Cate Blanchett?  I guess?

~The best plot twist/ending  –  Ooh!  Ooh!  I have the perfect answer for this one.  Absolute favorite movie ending EVER is the ending to ‘The Bourne Ultimatum’ (2007).  When Nicky is listening to the radio (or is she watching TV?) and the newscaster says that nobody’s found Bourne’s body yet and then that delicious music starts playing and she smiles and then it cuts to him swimming away.  It’s gold, I tell you, and I can’t describe it well enough – you just have to watch it for yourself.  (The runner-up for this category would definitely be the ending of ‘The Great Escape’ (1963).)

~The best opening/closing credits – Opening credits?  ‘The Russians are Coming, The Russians are Coming’ (1966).  Always makes me grin.  As for closing credits, I’m partial to the closing credits to any Marvel movie I’ve seen, ’cause they’re so cool. (Plus, mid- and after-credits scenes for the win.)  Also, ‘WALL·E”s (2008) closing credits are simply the best.

~The best soundtrack/score to a film – HOW CAN I ANSWER THAT?  Impossible.  Hagood Hardy’s score for ‘Anne of Green Gables’ (1985) and James Powell’s score for the How to Train Your Dragon movies would definitely be near the top of the list, though.  And Elmer Bernstein’s iconic scoring for ‘The Magnificent Seven’ (1960) is awesome as well.  But, really, there are wayyyy too many for me to list here.

~Favourite classic film –  Besides ‘The Magnificent Seven’ (1960) (which I’ll be putting down as an answer to the last question) my favorite classic film would most likely be ‘Casablanca’ (1942).  There are loads of other classic films that I adore, of course, but ‘Casablanca’ has always been special to me ever since it changed my opinion of old black & white movies.

~A film that you hate – Pinocchio’ (1940). *shudders*

~A film that changed your opinion about something – Well, I wish I could say something deep and powerful in answer to this one, but the only thing I can think of is how drastically ‘Minority Report’ (2002) changed my opinion of Tom Cruise (for the better).  Oh, and of course, ‘Casablanca’ (1942) changed my opinion of old movies (again, for the better).  As did ‘A Tale of Two Cities’ (1935), come to think of it.

~A guilty pleasure  The Air Bud movies.  So much cheese, but so much nostalgia and feels and amazingness, too.

~A film that you used to love but now hate – Basically any animated movie my little brothers have watched to death.  Also, ‘Frozen’ (2013) because it’s actually pretty lame. (At least, in my opinion.)

It’s still a gorgeous movie, though.

~Favourite film sequel – ‘Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade’ (1989), ‘Catching Fire’ (2013), ‘Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian’ (2009) ‘Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb’ (2014), and ‘Anne of Avonlea’ (1987).  All superb sequels.

~Film character you relate to the most – I don’t really relate to fictional characters all that often.  Rilla Blythe and Darry Curtis are two with whom I feel the most connection (and they’re so different, too!) but that’s only when it comes to the book (Rilla of Ingleside and The Outsiders).  I guess Belle, from ‘Beauty and the Beast’ (1991), would be my answer.

~Favourite film quote – “I have no idea what I’m going to do tomorrow.”  “How exciting!” (Larry and Teddy from ‘Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb)  That one always makes me tear up just a little and it’s so inspiring.  I tend to like conversations in films better than just single quotes, though. (Mostly funny conversations, if we’re being specific.) (Mag7 does have some super-duper one-liners, though.)

~A film that you wish more people had seen – In theatres, do you mean?  I really couldn’t say, so just take a look at the films I put in the ‘most underrated film’ category.

~The most hilarious film you’ve seen – ‘Meet the Robinsons’ (2007).  There are lots of great comedies I’ve watched in my time, but that one always makes me laugh and laugh and laugh.  ‘The Russians are Coming, The Russians are Coming’ (1966) also amuses me greatly. (As well as the Night at the Museum movies and basically every animated film ever.)


~A film you wish someone would make – Not counting all the book-to-film adaptions I want, I’d have to say that ‘Finding Coral’ would be my first choice.  It would be the third film in the ‘Finding Nemo’ (2003) series and would begin with Marlin (somehow) finding out that Coral didn’t actually die, but instead was seriously injured/lost and now Marlin and Nemo have to set out on an epic quest to find her.  THIS HAS TO BE A THING, AMIRIGHT? (Note: this was originally my brother Ezra’s idea, but I’ve adopted it.)

~Favourite film from your favourite actor/actress  –  Dana Andrews – ‘Laura’ (1944) // Audrey Hepburn – ‘Charade’ (1963) // Tom Cruise – ‘Minority Report’ (2002) // Harrison Ford – ‘Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade’ (1989) // Cate Blanchett – ‘Cinderella’ (2015)

~Favourite documentary – I don’t watch documentaries.

~Favourite animated film – ‘Meet the Robinsons’ (2007) and ‘Cars’ (2006).  Also, the How to Train Your Dragon movies and ‘Robin Hood’ (1973) and ‘Tangled’ (2010) and, oh, just tons and tons of others.  I guess it all depends on my mood, really.

~Favourite film based on a book/comic/etc. – ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ (2014).  ‘Big Hero 6’ (2014) is great as well.

~Favourite film villain – That is such a hard one to answer, because what does it really mean?  Evilest villain? (President Snow from the Hunger Games movies)  ‘Favorite’ in the sense of one that I have a weird, unexplainable liking for/crush on? (Ben Wade from ‘3:10 to Yuma’ – 1957)  A villain that I alternately despise and understand? (Professor Callahan from ‘Big Hero 6’ – 2014)  Is it a villain that’s so suave and smart that you can’t help but be fascinated by him? (Waldo from ‘Laura’ – 1944)  Or is it a villain that isn’t really a villain at all? (The Winter Soldier from ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ – 2014)  How am I supposed to answer that? 

Oh, wait.  I just did.

~A film that you love but everyone else hates – ‘Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull’ (2008) because seriously, people.  Why all the hate???  It’s a clever, interesting film that, while it doesn’t feel the same as the first three, still delivers fast-paced adventure and enough nostalgia to tug at your heartstrings and, admit it, Mutt isn’t all that bad.  And neither is the movie as a whole.


~A film you wish you had seen in theatres – *shrugs* (This post is so long already and I’ve only seen a movie in a movie theatre once.)

~Favourite film from your favourite director  – Alfred Hitchcock’s ‘Notorious’ (1946), William Wyler’s ‘The Best Years of Our Lives’ (1946), and Steven Spielberg’s ‘Minority Report’ (2002).

~Favourite film from your childhood – That would be Disney’s ‘Robin Hood’ (1973).  I’ve got it memorized.

~Your favourite film of all time – ‘The Magnificent Seven’ (1960).  And if you didn’t know that, you’ve obviously just stumbled across my blog, ’cause I’ve talked about my love for this film in at least three posts.  It’s a gloriously amazing movie with The Best Cast of All Time and The Best Soundtrack of all Time and The Best Quotable Lines of all time.  If you haven’t seen it, what on earth are you waiting for? 🙂

Steve McQueen and Yul Brynner in The Magnificent Seven (1960):

Wow.  That was a looooong post.  Congratulations for making it all the way down here!  Now let’s talk about all these movies (and more) in the comments, ‘kay?



valentine’s day 2017: #relationshipgoals


~”If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more.” – #relationshipgoals

~When some famous movie star takes you into an empty set and creates a beautiful (albeit fake) rose-trellised garden flooded with moonlight and star dust and then proceeds to sing you a song and you realize he’s more than just a shadow on film. – #relationshipgoals

~”I’m your density.” – #relationshipgoals

~How Jack looks at Rose and vice-versa. – #relationshipgoals

~”You were my new dream.” – #relationshipgoals

~Anne and Gilbert and how she cracks the slate over his head at first but then when he’s dying she shows him her book and then they get married and go through so many ups and downs and then WWI breaks into their family but they’re still strong for each other and love each other. – #relationshipgoals

~”I let her go.” – #relationshipgoals

~TheMarried Life Montage’ from UP. – #relationshipgoals

~”Stay with me?”  “Always.” – #relationshipgoals

~When your husband’s slowly killing you with a combination of poisoned tea and sheer terror and then the guy you really love shows up, ready to rescue you, and then actually does while under enormous pressure and plenty of danger and you’re just hanging onto him, trusting him to get you safely away. – #relationshipgoals

Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman in Notorious:

~”Baby, all your facial parts are in the right place.” – #relationshipgoals

~Robin Hood + Maid Marian, any version/adaption of the story EVER – #relationshipgoals

~”Fraulein…I want you to stay.” – #relationshipgoals

~Steve and Peggy and how even before Steve got all tall and buff, Peggy liked him because of the thing with the grenade and he’s smart and funny and pretty awesome to boot, and how Steve was sort of scared of her at first (not really, but pretty much) and then their friendship/professional relationship deepened into something beautiful and then he died and she got married and it’s just too much, guys, but it’s still #relationshipgoals.

~”Will you love me just as much when I’m normal?”  “I’ll be insane about you.” – #relationshipgoals

~Larry Daley and Amelia Earhart’s rather unique relationship in Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian – #relationshipgoals

~”You’re as beautiful as the day I lost you.” – #relationshipgoals

~Also, y’know, my mom has stuck so close to my dad’s side during his battle with cancer and my grandparents have been married for almost fifty years, so I have the greatest #relationshipgoals examples right in front of me every single day.  And that’s a blessing I’m hugely grateful for. ❤

Legit photo of my parents.


“i’m singin’ and dancin’ in the rain…”

AKA all my favorite old Hollywood movie musicals.  And there are a ton.

// Mary Poppins – 1964 //

A singing nanny, a cross father, and plenty of magical (and sometimes animated) adventures.  This one makes me cry simply because of Saving Mr. Banks (though even before that, ‘Let’s Go Fly A Kite’ always did leave me a little teary).  There’s plenty of smart humor in this one, so adults and older teens can enjoy it, too.  ‘Feed the Birds’ is simply wonderful.  Favorite part of the film?  The finale.

// State Fair – 1945 //,%20Jeanne/Annex/Annex%20-%20Crain,%20Jeanne%20(State%20Fair)_02.jpg

Dana Andrews is splendid in this film, but everyone else turns in a great performance, too.  The songs give me all the happy feelings, as does the way the whole thing turns out perfectly in the end. (When Elisabeth and I watched this for the first time, we were getting a little worried when there was only about two minutes left and Margie and Wayne were still mopey.  Thankfully, it all turned out fine.)  Favorite part of the film?  All the songs.

// Singin’ in the Rain – 1952 //

For the longest time, this was my favorite movie.  And it still is one of my favorites.  I love the friendship between Don and Kathy and Cosmo – it’s so fun to watch! (Especially during ‘Good Morning’.)  The costumes are the BEST and Jean Hagen totally deserved her Oscar nomination.  Fun fact: my siblings and I used to sing the songs to this so often that Mom literally banned it for about a year.  Favorite part of the film?  Debbie Reynolds.

// The Happiest Millionaire – 1967 //

*siiiiigh* This movie is my happy place.  The songs, the story, the characters, the actors…all of it.  Cordy’s relationship with her dad is so sweet and the romance is adorable and the Sherman brothers almost outdid their song-writing turn in Mary Poppins with this movie.  Plus, it’s so very funny.  Favorite part of the film?  The ball, I think.  Or the whole opening when John is getting used to the Biddles’ way of doing things.

// Seven Brides for Seven Brothers – 1954 //

The first time I watched this film, I hated it for some inexplicable reason. (I was quite young.)  Then I watched it just last year and I loved and adored it.  It’s so perfect!  Millie is one of the best heroines in the history of cinema, in my opinion, and the Pontipee brothers are…unique.  And lovable, too.  Favorite part of the film?  The barn-raising scene, of course.

// The Sound of Music -1965 //

Christopher Plummer kinda makes this movie what it is.  I mean, Julie Andrews is QUEEN and all that, but there’s just something about Christopher Plummer as Captain von Trapp that puts The Sound of Music on my list of favorite musicals.  I also enjoy all the children (you really need to read Forever Liesel by Charmian Carr) and Eleanor Parker as the Baroness.  Favorite part of the film?  Maria’s wedding. ❤

// White Christmas – 1954 //

Favorite Christmas movie and one of my very favorite movies in general.  Most of the songs make me feel like my heart is filled with sparkles and little glittery hearts and diamonds.  Love it.  Also, the characters are great, especially Judy and Betty, and Dean Jaggers as General Waverly makes me cry and it’s just…gahhhh.  So amazing.  Favorite part of the film?  Either ‘Count Your Blessings’ or the bit where they surprise the General.  I can’t decide.  Oh, and all the costumes.

How many of these movie musicals have you seen?  What are some of your favorites?


book review: the lost girl of astor street

Lydia has vanished.

Lydia, who’s never broken any rules, except falling in love with the wrong boy. Lydia, who’s been Piper’s best friend since they were children. Lydia, who never even said good-bye.

Convinced the police are looking in all the wrong places, eighteen-year-old Piper Sail begins her own investigation in an attempt to solve the mystery of Lydia’s disappearance. With the reluctant help of a handsome young detective, Piper goes searching for answers in the dark underbelly of 1924 Chicago, determined to find Lydia at any cost.

When Piper discovers those answers might stem from the corruption strangling the city—and quite possibly lead back to the doors of her affluent neighborhood—she must decide how deep she’s willing to dig, how much she should reveal, and if she’s willing to risk her life of privilege for the sake of the truth.

From the glitzy homes of the elite to the mob-run streets of 1920s Chicago, Stephanie Morrill’s jazz-age mystery shows just how far a girl will go to save her friend.


First of all, take a look at that cover.  Drink it in.  Gorgeous, isn’t it?  Well, let me tell you that the story inside fully measures up to the glamour and elegance and intrigue that the cover promises.  Just so ya’ll know before I go any further into this review, I was given an advance copy of The Lost Girl of Astor Street in exchange for my honest review.  I didn’t know much about the story before I started reading, just that the cover was pretty and it was historical YA fiction and I kinda sorta knew the author from the writing blog that she co-runs.  Oh, and A FREE BOOK.  Always exciting, right?

Anyway, I started reading and got sucked in pretty quickly.  And it ended up surprising me.  For one thing, since The Lost Girl of Astor Street is a YA novel, I expected there’d be a love triangle (especially since there’s at least three available guys that Piper could’ve become involved with) and I determined I’d slog through it and focus on the other aspects of the story, but there wasn’t a love triangle at all.  Huzzah!  What I got instead was an adorable, swoony romance that complimented the mystery side of the story without overpowering it. (I like my romantic subplots to be sweet and to the point.)

I quite liked all the characters.  Piper, of course, was determined and stubborn and actually quite inspiring since she’s the same age as me and doing so much with her life.  I did think she cried a little too much, even considering the extreme circumstances swirling around her, but that could just be me.  Lydia was a dear, as were Walter and Emma and Matthew.  Mariano was the BEST, in my opinion.  I even liked Nick.  It was so fun to read a solid, interesting novel with immensely likable characters who were easy to fall in love with.

The setting of The Lost Girl of Astor Street was beautifully drawn, both the place and the time period.  It’s always satisfying to start reading a historical novel and realize that the author has researched everything so well, and that’s what this book did for me.  1920’s Chicago was a fascinating place to ‘live in’ for several hours and as I read this on my Kindle, I kept checking to see how much I had left, not because I was bored, but because I didn’t want the story to end.  Oh, and I enjoyed the Italian mafia angle to the story – I’ve always been fascinated by The Mob for some reason, so that was cool.

Overall, The Lost Girl of Astor Street was a thoroughly enjoyable read that I’d recommend to fans of Downton Abbey and period dramas in general (books, movies, and TV shows).


the lost girl of astor street clue hunt: clue #11

A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of reading an advance e-copy of The Lost Girl of Astor Street and I loved it just as much as I’m sure you guys will.  My review will be posted tomorrow, but for now, let me just say that this book is a sparkling mystery filled with memorable characters and has a plot that twists and turns at every step.  Perfect for mystery lovers or people who can’t get enough of period dramas like Downton Abbey.

Anyway.  The real purpose of this post is not to talk up The Lost Girl of Astor Street (that’ll be tomorrow, like I said) but to provide you with the next clue on your clue hunt – the eleventh one, in fact.  If you have no idea what this is all about, just go to the author’s blog (she’s the first stop on the hunt) and you can find out.

And the clue is…


Here’s the full roster of all the blogs that are participating in the clue hunt so you can easily go around and collect each one.

Clue 1: Stephanie Morrill
Clue 2: Some Books Are
Clue 3: Gabriella Slade
Clue 4: Page by Page, Book by Book
Clue 5: Pens and Scrolls
Clue 6: Singing Librarian Books
Clue 7: Heather Manning
Clue 8: Annie Louise Twitchell
Clue 9: Noveling Novelties
Clue 10: Kaitee Hart
Clue 11: Classics and Craziness
Clue 12: Zerina Blossom
Clue 13: Rebecca Morgan
Clue 14: Keturah’s Korner
Clue 15: That Book Gal
Clue 16: Anna Schaeffer
Clue 17: Hadley Grace
Clue 18: Lydia Howe
Clue 19: Ramblings by Bethany
Clue 20: Matilda Sjöholm
Clue 21: Lydia Carns
Clue 22: Broken Birdsong
Clue 23 & Clue 24: The Ink Loft
Clue 25: Roseanna M. White

Have fun!


beauty and the beast: first thoughts

(First thoughts besides “gahhhhh” and *siiiiiiigh*and “SQUEEEEE”, that is.)

Soooooo yesterday I finally caught up with watching Every Classic Disney Princess Movie Ever (besides The Princess and the Frog – does that count?) which is pretty cool.  Especially since, y’know, this one finally lived up to all the hype.  Confession: I wasn’t allowed to watch most Disney movies as a kid, so I’ve been catching up in my Later Years, and I haven’t been wowed by any of the princess movies (besides Tangled, of course).  They all seem overrated, to me at least.  Feel free to try to change my opinion in the comments, ’cause I’d love to discuss this perplexing problem with you guys, but for right now, I stick by my statement.

ANYWAY.  First impressions, here we come.

Belle is officially my second favorite Disney princess. (First one being, always and forever, Rapunzel.)  I mean, she loves books.  And not just in the way some people say they do and then they never really read and/or are unable to carry on an intelligent conversation about books.  Also, she has more grace than I do: if a rude, overbearing guy dumped one of my favorite books in the mud and later put his muddy boots all over the open pages, I’d probably do…something.  I dunno what, but something.  And she’s just so relatable and brave and self-sacrificing and just YES.

The Beast made me cry.  Sure, I guess he deserved what he got since he was so arrogant and rude (Kuzco, anyone?), but still.  He makes me cry.  So did ‘Something There’ and ‘Beauty and the Beast’ because FEELS and Alan Menken’s gorgeous songs get me every time. (Also, ‘Beauty and the Beast’ made me cry even before I watched the movie, so there’s that.)

It’s just so GOOD.  The story, the characters, and the music all came together to create something wonderful.

That’s about all I can say right now because my morning coffee is calling me, so it’s back to my busy little life.  However, if you want to know my thoughts on any part of or character in the film – or if just want to fangirl – be my guest (see what I did there?) and drop a comment (or two).  I’d love to hear from you!


P.S. My review of I’m Not Ashamed isn’t happenin’ this week.  Sorry.  I would still like blog post ideas from you, though. 🙂