I don’t often buy books I’ve never heard of by the unfamiliar authors purely on a whim, let alone for a full price, but this novel by a Korean-American writer, a spontaneous pick while milling around a bookstore, totally justified the gamble (also, I’ve noticed I’m much more likely to buy anything when it’s in red). It’s a sign of a great book when, after spending time with its characters for over 600 pages, you’re sad to say goodbye as you turn over the last page.
I went to the Astor Theatre with a friend for a Robert Eggers double feature: last year’s The Lighthouse and his debut film, The Witch, that I was happy to re-watch on the big screen. T’was a fun night of creepy folk tales and period horror. Now that the coronavirus is shutting theatres down, it’s strange to think that this might be my last cinema outing for a while, and that the last two films I’ve watched are about people going insane and killing each other in confined spaces.
I finally got around to reading this excellent biography of Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, which I picked up, appropriately enough, during my trip to Mexico almost three years ago. I’ve been a fan of Frida’s striking, intensely personal paintings for a long time, and during my trip I was lucky enough to visit Casa Azul, the Frida Kahlo Museum in the neighbourhood of Coyoacán in Mexico City. In retrospect, I almost wish I’d read the book and got more insight into Frida’s life before the visit, but ah well.
I don’t usually write about TV shows on my blog, but I really wanted to give a shout-out to this classic 1976 BBC mini-series set in ancient Rome, based on the historical fiction novels by Robert Graves (which I of course will have to read now).
One of Christie’s most beloved and famous novels, Murder on the Orient Express is top-tier Dame Agatha, so effortlessly readable I finished most of it while taking a very long bath. It’s also something of a favourite for big-screen adaptation, as evidenced by the recent star-studded version with Kenneth Branagh as Poirot, though I haven’t seen either that or the 1974 adaptation.
I’m slowly catching up on the acclaimed 2019 movies, most recently this World War I drama from the director Sam Mendes. I always have to overcome a barrier of reluctance with war movies set in the modern era, but I’m glad I managed to watch 1917 on the big screen (and in the plush comfort of Village Gold Class too!)
I thought I was going to miss out on this movie, but thanks to its recent historical success at the Oscars, South Korean director Bong Joon-ho’s film got a second life at the cinemas. It’s a remarkable and wildly entertaining ride that deserves to be seen on a big screen, if only for the reactions of the crowd gasping out loud at the movie’s twists and turns.