Don't Eat With Your Mouth Full

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Empire Line Zombies and Magical Housewives
I never read Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. It seemed destined to be a one-joke kind of novel, and I felt I could kind of imagine it in advance. Flicking through it in a bookshop didn't convince me otherwise.

But it makes a terrific movie. If you think an Elizabeth Bennett who has trained in martial arts at a Shaolin temple is the kind of thing you might like to see, I urge you to give it a go. They got everything right, pretty much, especially in the crucial areas of tone and pacing, where a project of this type is in most danger. (I see it's got fairly bad scores on Rotten Tomatoes, especially from male critics, but phooey to them.) There are some cuts: Darcy dives into his almost-canonical pond not in Derbyshire but in the Home Counties, where the whole of the film's action takes place; Georgina is mentioned (her role as the cause of the final rift between Wickham and Darcy being too useful to omit) but seen only in one long shot; the Gardiners aren't even mentioned, presumably having fallen prey to the zombie takeover of London before curtain up.

(By the way - I can't get used to the term "undead" being applied to zombies. It seems to me to belong properly only to vampires, having been coined by Bram Stoker for that purpose. I have however been known to refer to toast as "unbread", so go figure.)

Last night was my second trip to the cinema this week - unheard of for me. On Monday my friend Htay and I went to see The Cowards Who Looked to the Sky, part of a season of contemporary Japanese film at the local arts cinema. I enjoyed it, and the Q&A with the Japanese director afterwards was very informative. The cryptic title was explained as a reference to a Japanese idiom, in which looking to the sky is indicative of indecision and wishy-washiness, something several characters were guilty of to various degrees. The main draw for me those was that one of the main characters was a housewife obsessed with a certain Magical Girl franchise, and indeed liked to have sex in cosplay. I was curious as to whether the MG was real or one invented invented for this story, but as far as I can see it was an amalgam of several. There were hints of Sailor Moon and Cardcaptor Sakura in there, but also of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha, a series I'd never actually watched but had been meaning to get around to, if only for Madoka research purposes.

Suiting the deed to the word I have now seen the first few - but more of that in the next anime round-up post.

I think i'll wait for it on Netflix.

To judge by the empty cinema many are of your mind.

I teach 7th-grade English. This month, I insisted that their required independent reading book be 7th-grade reading level or higher (and you would have thought I had condemned them all to an Inquisitorial dungeon, but that's another story). The goal, of course, was to have them go beyond their comfort zone for one month and maybe find some "better" literature.

Which hilariously backfired on me in the case of the girl who is now slogging her way through Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.

"Unbread" is a very useful word.

If hope she's already read Pride and Prejudice? (Or at least Bridget Jones?)

I went to see P&P&Z after reading this post and LOVED it. Whoever thought Mr. Collins could be a scene-stealer! And what a great Lady Catherine. Thanks for the tip!

I'm pleased it's not just me who likes it!

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