Thursday, May 12, 2016

A Little Bit of Sunshine

Today was my first of two early work days in a row. Though I did briefly end up in a register and put away a few things, I spent most of the morning outside, rounding up carts and sweeping. Apparently, a regional manager was visiting later, and the front end managers wanted the store to look its best. Good thing it finally got sunny, at least for a little while, today, and much warmer. It was so nice, I took the long way home down Nicholson Road just to be able to enjoy the day a little longer.

When I got in, I called Mom. I hadn't gotten her on Mother's Day, and I wanted to say "hi." I did catch her this time. She's been busy with work and taking care of Dad. She didn't have time to celebrate her birthday back in March, much less Mother's Day. Dad just had his first round of chemotherapy the other day. I told her about my fun birthday, my week off, and how busy I've been since then.

I worked on writing for a while after getting off with Mom.. Leia finds a suit of armor in the same chest in Ben's cottage he retrieved Luke's armor from. It fits her perfectly, and it turns out there's a reason for that. It once belonged to her mother Padme, the Queen of Naboo, before she died. Leia calls Ben's ghost out for lying to Luke about their father. Ben explains...and says the twins are going to have to confront Vader again and probably kill him. Neither is eager to do that. Luke doesn't want to kill anybody. Leia doesn't want to get within a hundred mile radius of her father after he did to Han and to her.

The two try to heal Luke, using their remaining powers. They just aren't strong enough. Leia no longer has healing powers - they were cut off when Vader cut her hair. They get bones, but not much else. Leia's frustrated and wants to leave. She feels like she'll be more of a help elsewhere. Luke says no. He can try to heal the hand further, and he needs to get Arthur to forge his sword.

When I did break for dinner, I made leftovers while watching Silk Stockings. Mom mentioned she and Dad caught this on TCM a few days ago and enjoyed it. I completely forgot I dubbed it a while back. This is the 1957 film musical version of the 1939 romantic comedy Ninotchka. The title character is a severe Russian general (Cyd Charisse) who has been called to Paris to stop a composer from defecting. The composer is supposed to be writing songs for a big musical. The director (Fred Astaire) tries to seduce Nina to keep the show going on, but ends up falling for this very determined woman. Meanwhile, the star of the movie (Janis Page) is having somewhat more luck with the composer and the three commissars who were originally charged with bringing him back.

The last movie musical for director Rouben Mamoulien and composer Cole Porter has some nice songs for Fred Astaire, notably the standards "All of You" and "Paris Loves Lovers." Otherwise, it's flat and badly dated. Page was a stage star who never caught on in Hollywood - she shows why here with her rather abrasive performance. Charisse is a bit too stiff as Nina; Peter Lorre and Jules Munshin are having a bit more fun as the commissars who are having too much fun to go back to Cold War-era Russia. Fun for fans of Astaire, Porter, or the big MGM musicals of the 40's and 50's...but you'll need to know a little Cold War history to understand a lot of why Nina and her director have such a hard time getting together.

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