Thursday, July 2, 2009

The beauty of a stay-cation and I KNOW WHERE I'M GOING! (94)

I've been a bit cabin fever-ish as of late. I've been living in SF for three months (as of yesterday to be specific) and I've yet to leave the city aside from a few brief, and bizarre, trips to the wild woods of the East Bay. My house is tiny and fraught with roommate related drama, and though I love Alex and I's room, I'm still a bit edgy from not having gotten out and seen even a small bit of this beautiful state.

Yet, today, I'm feeling much better, as I've started the first of a five day stay-cation. Oh yes, I'm still working, I'm still inside the walls of this amazing city, but gone are the dark halls and awkward conversations of my half-house. 'Cause we're house-sitting a mansion for five days. This isn't your Greek columned, 900-room, marble tiled, stereotypical mansion of the rich and famous. Oh no, this is a beautiful, might I say gorgeous, two story SF-style dream home that thanks to Alex's charming personality and oddly connected job, we'll be taking care of.

Sure, it's exactly one ten minute bike ride from my home, but who cares, this is a different world, a magic place that already has my stomach churning less, my heart beating a little bit slower, my brain barely spinning, and I couldn't be happier. Live a different life for five days, clear a little dust off my not-so weary shoulders. I suggest it to any and all.
Strangely enough I Know Where I'm Going! (93) is a film about a similar sort of different life. The film, another by Pressburger and Powell (two of my favorites), follows Joan Webster (Wendy Hiller from Pygmalion (85)) a sort of social climbing gold-digger on an adventure to be married in the windy isles of Scotland. From the start she's an obnoxious character, someone who's pulled herself up by her sheer force of personality, so stubborn that she endangers her life in her pursuit of her own ideals.

It's a classic fish-out-of-water story as Joan Webster finds herself not in the castle of as rich man, awaiting her nuptials, but instead stranded on an island of salt-of-the-Earth Scots by the gusty gales of these Northern Isles. Of course, stubborn as get-all, Webster meets an attractive lord, and fights the urge to achieve her dreams and not fall in love with this man of the people.

At times, Wendy Hiller plays the part of a stubborn socialite so well that I could barely watch her, so annoyed was I by her insistence that the upper class was her final resting place. To be quite honest, I was put off by the character to the degree that I didn't enjoy the film as much as I could've. I didn't care if Joan Webster drowned, hell, I was sort of rooting for it. "I want to be rich. I have dreams, blah, blah, blah," and so on. "Whate'er you say Ms. Webster, in to the boiling mouth of a whirlpool you go, everyone the better for it." At least that's how my version of this movie would go.

Certainly not my favorite Archer's film, but nonetheless and enjoyable detour on my quest.

I'm almost at 100. My palms, they sweat.

Friday: All That Heaven Allows (95)

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