icepixie: ([Movies] Fred and Ginger heart)
One of the unexpected benefits of working in a department with a lot of people who've immigrated from other countries is that holiday potluck lunches can get very exotic. We had one today, and in addition to the usual staples like deviled eggs, green bean casserole, turkey, and chocolate chip cookies, there were delicious homemade chicken dumplings, some kind of fried noodle dish, a Chinese beef dish I didn't catch the name of, and tasty little sesame seed pastry balls that are apparently called jin deui.

I almost didn't bother going to this, having had thoroughly meh experiences at work potlucks in the past, but I'm glad I went.

*

Finally got around to watching this week's Castle, which was one of the glurgiest things I've ever seen. And I'm a fan of 1930s and 40s movie musicals, so it's not like I haven't seen a lot of glurge! Ooof.

*

Got an idea and some words written on a Yuletide treat! Have much more research to do for it, though. Yikes. Also have ideas for Fandom Stocking goodies, yay. Just need to, you know, write the things.
icepixie: ([B5] Ivanova facepalm)
ARGH! This morning, my pretty rose-embroidered coat ripped along the seam under one of the arms. There's a pretty big area area of fabric under that arm that's frayed and rotted (perils of owning it for six years, I guess?), so the current plan is to take it to a tailor and see what they can make of it. Perhaps they can patch it with some velvet I'll bring them, because...

Tonight, as I was reaching up to get a spice jar from above the stove, I dangled my black velvet jacket/wrappy thing--which is lovely and which I wear about three or four days a week at work because it's vaguely business casual while also being comfy and goes with practically everything I own--against a burner. There is now a large, very obvious hole along the hem and a crispy piece of once-was-fabric burnt into the glasstop stove. DAMMIT.

...On the plus side, I did not set myself on fire. Always a good thing.

Current thinking is to hem the wrap above the burnt part and use the fabric cut off as the patch for the rose coat. Please, oh please let this work.

*

At least this week's Castle was A-MA-ZING.

These spoilers are waiting to beam you up. )
icepixie: ([BSG] Nothing but the rain)
I hope everyone affected by Sandy is safe, dry, and warm!

Speaking of Sandy, check out this satellite photo of her from this morning. Uh, there are some pretty great lakes under that cloud cover. There's a Nashville under that cloud cover. Note that we are 900 miles from New York City, and yet today's wind advisory, not to mention the non-advisory-level-but-still-noticeable winds that have been dogging us since Saturday and will continue until Friday? Sandy's fault.

*

Castle 5.04: "Probable Cause"

Spoilers )
icepixie: ([Fringe] Two Olivias)
I currently live the stereotype of Central timezone people being farmers who go to bed early (without the farming), and so I try to be in bed, if not quite to lights out, at 9:30ish. It seems I will be watching Castle online on Tuesdays again.

Thoughts on the episode )

In TV news

Sep. 23rd, 2012 09:40 am
icepixie: ([Fringe] Olivia looking up)
Fringe S5 premieres in less than a week! I have somewhat mixed feelings about it after last season, but given the little dance I just did in my chair when I realized there are only five days and ten hours left to wait, I'm going to guess "pleased" wins out. :D

Castle S5 also premieres this week. I was tempted not to even bother, but then I saw this sneak peak, and...this might not actually suck as much as last year. I laughed! Watching Castle! That hasn't happened in a while. The TV Guide-style summary is Spoilers? ) which does not fill me with enthusiasm, but maybe they'll only drag that out once or twice a season, and they will actually be funny/cute/sweet to make up for it? I think I could live with that.

Meanwhile, this weekend seems to have been given over to trolling for new, or at least read-it-so-long-ago-I-don't-remember-it, fic for some of my oldest fandoms. At the moment, I have DS9, TNG, XF, and SG-1 fic up in tabs, and I have a feeling SGA is going to get added to that before the day is out. To that end, allow me to recommend a series: the Greensleeves AU by ScopesMonkey, which you can reach by scrolling to the end of their profile. It's Jadzia/Julian, aka Baby's First OTP. (Adorable science twins! Whyyyyy did you have to destroy all my dreams, PTB?)
icepixie: ([Castle] My fandom reads)
DOGGEHS. )
icepixie: ([Castle] My fandom reads)
Bwahaha, so apparently the dude behind Bon Iver has created his own record label and named it Chigliak Records. (With an appropriate logo, even!)

*

Uuuugh, Castle was interminable tonight. Brief details )
icepixie: ([Movies] Fred and Ginger heart)
[So, um...hi. I intended to write an LJ entry of moderate size, but 4,000 words later, I appear to have an essay. I feel like this might be a metaphor for my life.]

My most recent vid has inspired me to poke some more at my screwball comedy vid. I have several films lined up for it, but I figure I could probably use more, and I might want to switch some of them out for better representatives of the genre. Which led me to the question, apparently rather difficult to answer, of what exactly constitutes a screwball film, or even screwball comedy as a genre. More than most genres, it seems to be a case of "I know it when I see it."

Still, I figured there had to be some kind of guidelines. For answers, I turned to James Harvey's Romantic Comedy in Hollywood from Lubitsch to Sturges, which the internet tells me is one of the most highly-regarded texts in this field. I skimmed a couple chapters of it for my Modernism and ballroom dance (with a special appearance by Fred and Ginger) paper in grad school, but due to time constraints never read the rest of it.

It's a very good book: extremely readable, well-argued and supported, covering a good breadth of material, making a thorough analysis of specific films or scenes where warranted. Harvey's also an unexpectedly funny guy; the text is aimed at an educated popular audience, but it's still written mostly in academese...except when he calls this character a "dumbass," or says these characters are "talking shit." 1 He also has this hilarious vendetta against Ronald Reagan (the book was published in 1987) that he carries out in the footnotes and which even intrudes into the text in the concluding chapter. He links Reagan to Capra's socially conscious films like Mr. Deeds Goes to Town and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, which he deplores basically for being boring and false. This was my favorite bit: "[Y]oung people, who get restive at the high romanticism of old movies...sit rapt and unprotesting and apparently moved through the platitudes of Meet John Doe and Mr. Deeds Goes to Town. The Capra vision isn't dead. [footnote] Unhappily. Reagan in the White House (a Capra event in itself, though certainly no joke) 'explains' his economic policies to reporters by quoting 'lengthy passages' from Mr. Deeds Goes to Town!"

Harvey and I agree on many things. Our views on Capra are very similar; I find his movies bland and platitudinous, except for It Happened One Night, which is in my top five movies (Harvey loves it too). Like me, his favorite Astaire/Rogers film, at least scriptwise, is Shall We Dance. We both find My Man Godfrey overrated. But we differ on Irene Dunne, and specifically on The Awful Truth, which he considers the epitome of screwball comedies, and which I couldn't even make it halfway through, I found it so painfully unfunny.

He's a little too into the director-as-auteur theory for my tastes, which I think influences his tendency to ramble on about an individual director's whole oeuvre, from westerns to melodramas, rather than focusing on the romantic comedies. The book could do with tightening there. But overall, it's excellent.

It also helped me define screwball comedy for myself. Well, sort of. Mostly. In a way. Because it is a very tricksy genre. )

Anyway, ALL OF THIS IS TO SAY...what are your favorite screwball comedies? What do you think makes one? OMG, TALK TO ME PLZ.

Footnotes )
icepixie: ([Castle] My fandom reads)
Because really, the more like Nick & Nora Charles these two are, the better the show would be.

This is short, obviously. But there is a visual aide! )

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