Away We Go. This got widely panned as a festival of smug self-love. Not true. Yes, the movie starts with a series of vignettes in which its protagonists, a couple expecting a baby, come out feeling better than the variously ruined families they encounter — coarse drunks, dopey hippies, etc. But the movie then brings them up against couples who are just like them — and, who, it turns out, are just as ruined. I think the reviewers got distracted by the fact that director Sam Mendes’s other big movie, American Beauty, really is a moronic smugfest about the spiritual deadness of the American suburb — gaah, I’m bored even typing it. This movie, though, is worth seeing. The end, the earnest part, drags. But overall I laughed out loud eight or ten times, which is infinity times as many as in a typical comedy. Letter from Here liked it too. Dr. Mrs. Q points out that none of the comically awful families in this movie are done as well as the Leslie Mann – Paul Rudd couple in Knocked Up. But what is?
Mika, Life in Cartoon Motion. CJ picked this off the shelf at Best Buy because he liked the cover, and I remember being knocked out by the single, “Grace Kelly.” It’s terrific — the best album in its genre I’ve heard since Erasure’s The Innocents. (Caveat: it is also the only album in this genre I’ve heard since Erasure’s The Innocents. I’m picky about dance pop!) Anyway, watch the video below: if you don’t love it, you’ll hate this album.