Inconceivable!

I had some subjets in mind to write about. And then I stumbled upon this article about one of my top ever favourite films. I am talking, of course, about The Princess Bride (1987), the movie adaptation of the same-title book writen by William Goldman. On IMDb, the story is summarized as follows:

While home sick in bed, a young boy’s grandfather reads him a story called The Princess Bride.

My favourite summary, on the other hand, is the one the said grandpa makes to his grandson on the book:

“Does it have any sports in it?”

“Fencing. Fighting. Torture. Poison. True Love. Hate. Revenge. Giants. Hunters. Bad men. Good men. Beautifulest Ladies. Snakes. Spiders… Pain. Death. Brave men. Cowardly men. Strongest men. Chases. Escapes. Lies. Truths. Passion. Miracles.”

“Sounds okay,” I said and I kind of closed my eyes.”

Sounds okay. It is okay. More than okay, actually. I have an unapologetic and undying love for this film. It was the film I watched when I was a kid and had to stay home because I was sick. The film I still go to when I need a “feel-good-like-a-mug-of-hot-chocolate” film. The one that I know by heart and can quote (in its original english version or in the spanish dubbed one) by heart. The one that will still make me laugh every single time I watch it.

 The article I linked at the top explains why the movie encountered (and still encounters upon first-time viewers) such succes. It’s adventurous, fun, scary, ironic, serious, tongue-in-cheek, has amazing performances, great diaogue, a beautiful soundtrack and memorable characters. And one of the best sword fights in cinema history.

And now I’m realizing writing about Princess Bride was a mistake. Because now I want to watch it again. And watching this movie then brings me to watching Stardust, the 2007 film inspired from author Neil Gaiman which most consider a “modern heir” of Rob Reiner‘s film. Both share the same kind of humour and tone that makes them enjoyable for kids and adults, fairytales that pay hommage to classic fairytale stories while having an ironic approach to them. An incredible balance to achieve, but both films do it without any effort.

So there you go, dear readers. If you are looking for something light but entertaining and good to watch, give ButtercupWasley and the Impressive Clergyman a chance. And have fun storming the castle.

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Audio

‘Promontory’

Last of the Mohicans (1992) must be one of the few cases I know in which the movie completely differs from the book it’s adapting but it’s still amazing. Daniel Day-Lewis is in great part responsible for that, but for me, the best part about this movie is its soundtrack. Epic, inspiring, beautiful. This is my favourite track. To the point I’ve been using it as ringtone for years. Now, if someone could please explain me how to personalise your iPhone’s ringtone to put any song you want, I’d be most grateful. 

Anyone can cook

Gusteau: What do I always say, Remy? Anyone can cook.Rémy: Well yeah, anyone can. That doesn’t mean that anyone should.

Do you recognise that quote? Yes, it is from Ratatouille, the Pixar film. For a long time I used it as an excuse not to, well, cook “elaborated” recipes. The simpler (aka, pasta simple) the better. Anything that involves a recipe which demanded to take care of more than one thing at once was systematically ruled out. I shouldn’t cook, even if I could. I guess I just didn’t want to face something that scared me and put me out of my comfort zone. 

Then… we’ll, I guess life happened, I grew older or maybe bolder, and I started trying things. I don’t do complicated fancy cooking, I stick to simple but good things. I started challenging myself. Experimenting with spices. Learning from others. Putting my own personal touch in the recipes. And I have to say, I have grown to become quite a competent cook. I think even my grandma (the one who always tried to make a proper lady out of me) would be proud. I am. Not because I learned to cook, but because I faced a fear and passed over it. 

Private collections 

I have a friend who collects cristal snowballs. My mum used to collect owls (and I’ve inherited her owl-passion, go figure). Some people collect stamps, coins, silver teaspoons or stuff like that. 

And then you have people who collect stars and doors. A few years back I stumbled upon someone who collected stars. She had started this website where people from all over the world could submit theirs picture featuring stars: tattoos, prints, details… She’d interview some of the people she took pictures of. She’d tell stories. She’d encourage people to go outside, open their ayes, follow their own star. Belén is an amazing person who will make you want to be better, look the world through a different angle, search for and forge stories. 

Another friend decided to collect doors. She started “hunting” them and opened an Instagram account to show her trophies. But now that everyone she knows knows she collects doors, doors come the her constantly. Which I find kind of amazing. Because, as what happened with the stars, she has made us look to our surroundings differently. Because you never know where you can find something beautiful. 
Top image, a door with stars. Double combo!

Creativity is contagious 

I have already said it elsewhere: working surrounded by creative and artistic people is one of the most fascinating and scary thing that has ever happened to me.

 

The thing is, I think (and some people that know me well woul agree), I have an inclination for artistically stuff without actually been an artist. I trained as a classical dancer for years. I went to painting classes. I love crafting and working with my hands. I like writing and taking pictures. But it has always been an inclination, a hobby, nothing I ever took seriously, because I know I am not good enough at any of those as to be taken seriously.

 

But creativity is contagious. First of all, because if someone creative discovers you are creative in any way, he (or she) is going to persuade you to pursue your passion, in whatever small way you might do it. Secondly, because when you see people putting themselves out there through their passion and craft, you feel a bit jealous, in a good way: you want to be able and bold enough to do the same. It is not related to showing of what you are capable of, I see it more like sharing a part of you with the world.
For some time, I wrote poems. They were for me -someone who is a hard nut to crack when it comes to sharing personal stuff- a way of communicating and exploring my inner world, to get to know me better myself. The I stopped, for various reasons. I started crafting for a while, combining that with photography. The way I do it, that is less personal. Yes, the way you chose to portrait a moment or the way you compose the photo comes from personal and artistic decisions, but I didn’t communicate with that as much of me as I did with writing.

 

Then I started to surround myself by crazy and brilliant creative people, active in any creative domain you can imagine. And I guess I became bolder, or crazier, and I did something that I had been avoiding for the last ten years or so: I did a painting. An oil painting.

 

My painting material had been gathering dust for years. I have photos and postal cards I have taken because when seen them I thought «that would make a nice painting», but I never painted them. I kept finding excuses: «it takes time», «oil painting smell is going to disturb my roommates», «I have nowhere to hang them once they’re done», etc., etc. you get the picture (pun intended).

 

But during my holiday, it suddenly happened: one afternoon I decided I needed to paint one painting I had been neglecting for years (a photo I took of a friend in the North Sea three or fours years ago), and there I went. It was scary, I wasn’t sure I was going to remember the techniques. In fact, I might have improvised a bit. A lot, probably. There is no way to say it. It was a simple project, a good one to go back to the brushes and colors and so, and I’m happy with the result. I know I am not Velázquez, but I’m ok with it.

Now, I only need to guess what to do with the painting now. Most of the excuses were only excuses, but I really have no where to hang the painting.