"We will not walk in fear, one of another"

Yesterday we saw Good Night, And Good Luck (imdb | rotten tomatoes), a film I’ve been desperate to see ever since I first watched the trailer. It was worth every minute of the wait.

It’s not often that a movie manages to be artistic, funny, tense, stylish, relevant, depressing and inspirational all at once, but this film was all of those things. The twin dangers it laid out — one that took hold just as Murrow predicted and another far more insidious that’s quietly repeated itself of late — expertly straddled the bluntness required to drive the point home and the subtlety needed to make it seem un-Hollywood. I cannot recommend this film enough, whether you’re 17 or 71.

As we left the theatre, a girl behind us made two comments: first, that it was depressing to think of today’s anchors and commentators after having heard some of Murrow’s oratory with which to compare it; second, that the physical similarities between Joe McCarthy and Bill O’Reilly are striking. So, I fear, are the tactical similarities.

We also watched The Last Castle (imdb | rotten tomatoes) which was simultaneously good and bad. Good in that Robert Redford is terrific as always and it was engaging enough, but bad because it was just too clichéd.

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We’re starting to get a little worried about my brother. He was in Delhi the day before the bombings, and was due to travel to Mumbai yesterday or today before flying home. Given that the bombs went off in popular tourist areas near a central train station, and that we haven’t heard from him, it’s a bit anxious. I know it’s pretty unlikely; the Canadian consulate in India isn’t reporting any Canadian casualties, and if he’s anywhere in the midst of a long train ride or flight back to London he might not have had a chance to get to an internet cafe (especially given the government’s urging to stay away from crowded areas). It’d just be good to hear from him is all.

[update: All is well. He emailed from London this afternoon.]

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Second loss in a row for Montreal last night. They went down 3 early on, and would’ve tied it up but for some superhuman goaltending. It got away from them in the third, but at least it wasn’t the massacre that Ottawa unleashed on Toronto. 8-0; ouch. That score made me almost as happy as watching Tie Domi, world’s most overrated fighter and all-around wanker, getting knocked out by a rookie. And to top it all off, Hasek got me a shutout for my pool. So that eased the pain a bit.

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Our one little experience with the International Festival Of Authors came last night as we went to see Stanzi’s friend Rebecca moderate a discussion about short stories. The participants were Lisa Moore, Daniel Alarcón, Melissa Bank and Craig Davidson. I bought Davidson’s book (I picked it up off the table, flipped it open and read a paragraph describing dogs tearing each other apart and figured, ‘how bad can it be?’) and got him to sign it.

We needed food and beer at this point, so Stanzi, Nellie, Rebecca and I walked over to C’est What where we encountered the human foghorn, chit-chatted over greasy snacks and spicy burgers, and kept Stanzi up past her bedtime.

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I forgot to mention Montreal losing to Ottawa the other night. I don’t want people to think I’ll only comment on the wins. Really, the loss came in OT to the best team in the NHL in their home rink, so it doesn’t bother me too much. What did bother me was Jason Spezza beating Sheldon Souray like a red-headed stepchild on the game winning goal. The goal was so good I’ll be watching Jason Spezza beat the Habs on the ‘best plays of the year!’ specials on boxing day. Oy.