Beautiful, epic, sweeping, mystical, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon was a revelation to many when it was released in 2000. Starring Chow Yun-Fat and Michelle Yeoh, it is also the story of unrequited love set against the grand sweep of China’s landscape.
A magical, powerful sword is stolen by a notorious thief and two renowned warriors go in pursuit to return it to its rightful owner. A series of breathtaking, fluid fight sequences follow (including one particularly memorable one taking place in windblown treetops) as the protagonists square off against each other. In addition, the stories of two contrasting love affairs unfold and the bonds of duty, honor, sacrifice and loyalty are tested.
Visually stunning, at turns melancholy, soaring, wistful and spiritual, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon won four Academy Awards including Best Foreign Language film.
Nim’s Island – Starring Abigail Breslin, Gerald Butler, and Jodie Foster.
Nim’s Island is the story of a girl named Nim who lives on a beautiful uncharted island with her father Jack, a research scientist. Nim spends her days exploring the beautiful island and reading. When her father is lost at sea after a storm, Nim contacts her favorite writer of adventure stories, Alex Rover, convinced he will know what to do. What Nim doesn’t realize is that “Alex” is really Alexandra, a woman who is afraid to leave her house. Will Jack survive? Will Alexandra find the courage to come out of her shell? An adventure story about the courage in each of us, Nim’s Island will delight the whole family.
Smart People – starring Thomas Haden Church, Christie Lahti, Ellen Page, Sarah Jessica Parker and Dennis Quaid
Dennis Quaid stars as a bitter, washed out widower in Smart People, a film that tackles the lives of several seriously unhappy people in surprisingly funny and touching ways. A hated literature professor at Carnegie Mellon, Lawrence Wetherhold has been earning the scorn of his students, colleagues, and family since the death of his wife several years ago. A health scare, an unexpected visit from his adopted brother, and a new romantic interest shake things up and stir Lawrence from his constant misery. Fine performances and a sharp script make this a must-see movie.
Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day – Starring Amy Adams and Frances McDormand
In 1939 London, Miss Guinevere Pettigrew is a middle-aged governess who finds herself once again unfairly dismissed from her job. Without so much as severance pay, Miss Pettigrew realizes that she must seize the day and intercepts an employment assignment for a social secretary. Arriving at a penthouse apartment for the interview, Miss Pettigrew is catapulted into the glamorous world and dizzying social whirl of American actress and singer, Delysia Lafosse. This funny and delightful movie proves that following your heart is right thing to do.
Today marks the anniversary of the official beginning of World War I on July 28, 1914. Now often overshadowed by the popularity of fiction and non-fiction of World War II, the First World War saw the introduction of many aspects of modern warfare including the first use of armored tanks and airplanes as fighters as well as the horrors of trench warfare and mustard gas. And although it was known as the “war to end all wars”, in many ways it contributed to the causes of the Second World War.
Poignant, horrific yet ultimately hopeful, the French language film A Very Long Engagement starring Audrey Tautou is set against the backdrop of the end of the war and it’s aftermath. Despite all evidence to the contrary, Mathilde refuses to believe that her fiance has died in the war. She launches an investigation, a search that introduces a multitude of interlocking stories and incidents. The movie shifts from the couple’s courtship before the war to the horrors of the trenches to Mathilde’s determined search after the war and back again. Throughout, Mathilde’s charm, intelligence and most of all faith remain unshakable and will make you believe too.
The really big screen!
We’re having a film festival for teens of the Quad Cities. For full details, call the Davenport Public Library at 563-326-7893. But a bit of information now might help. The Quad-City area Public Libraries have put out a call for entries for our first ever YouTube film fest. We would like teens to create a 3 to 5 minute film that they post to a special account on YouTube.com and turn in to us.
To make this even more fun, the Putnam Museum & IMAX Theatre® have invited us to have a Red Carpet Event to showcase the winners. Prizes will be awarded for movies selected by the librarians and by audience choice.
So join us for the event on Thursday, March 13 at 7:00 PM as area teens present their YouTube movie on the giant IMAX® screen.
No registration is required for the free screening on the 13th, but teens must register their entries by March 8th. Entry forms are at both the Main and Fairmount libraries, or any local public library. More information is also online at www.davenportlibrary.com.
So, how did you do with your Oscar pool? A couple surprise winners – Tilda Swinton for Best Supporting Actress and Marion Cotillard for Best Actress among them – probably messed up more than one score sheet. A complete list of winners can be found on the official Oscar site. If you want to catch one of the movies highlighted last night (or one of hundreds of others), be sure to check the library’s collection; we’ll be purchasing or have purchased all of the winners (Atonement, Juno and There Will be Blood aren’t on DVD yet but we’ll order them as soon as release dates are announced) Place holds on your favorites and we’ll call you when they’re available.
Of course, half of the fun of Oscar night is watching the stars and seeing the beautiful gowns. Get a recap of the all the glamour (and missteps!) at Entertainment Weekly’s online site and on E! Television’s site. What do you think – who had the best dress and who needs to hire a stylist?
Hollywood’s big night is coming – The Academy Awards. Oscar’s red carpet will be unrolled on Sunday, February 24th. See the lists of nominees at www.oscar.com.
To learn more about the history of movie making take a look at the 791.43 area within the Library. Here are some titles that might spark your interest:
Movies That Changed Us by Nick Clooney (Yep, that’s George Clooney’s dad.) 791.43 Clo
100 Years of Hollywood by Time-Life Books 791.42 One
The Golden Age of “B” Movies by Doug McClelland 791.43 McC