Monday, March 21, 2005
a boring update on an eventful weekend
For myself, lack of updates on this blog always coincide with being "busy" in the "real world" (random note: isn't it "funny" how "annoying" it can be when people start "overusing" the whole "quotation emphasis" thing).
Since this is the last weekend Grace and Joe were up in Seattle, I went up to the Greenwood house on Saturday thinking I'd catch a movie and meet them with Shiv. Unfortunately, my gross underestimation of traffic caused me to be late and we weren't able to catch movie, but had enough time to wait at the house for Steph, who received a letter from UCLA notifying for her of acceptance into their MIT program (congrats, Steph!) Another friend sucked into the filthy, unwashed bellybutton of America, Los Angeles.
The three of us (me, Shiv, Steph) headed together north, since Grace and Joe had an important family dinner later that night (the all important first lengthy encounter, da-dum!) While I've already had fun mocking Grace's paranoia about the outbreak of the Korean War II between her family and her soon-to-be in-laws, everybody thought it best to meet somewhere north to avoid the hideous traffic.
Unfortunately, Joe was sick and we weren't able to meet up together. Instead, Shiv, Steph, and I had mall adventures at Alderwood. Before tales of my fashion semi-humiliation circulate via the Greenwood Girls, I make this statement: yes, to the jeans, but no to suit jackets worn solo or pastel-colored polo shirts. A man like myself has to maintain what little pride he has left.
After Alderwood, the three of us caught a movie at the Metro. More on that later.
It wasn't until late Sunday afternoon that all of us were able to get together and chat for a little bit at University Village Starbucks. It's amazing and strange how time flies and how another couple of friends will soon be married - but I'm also looking forward to visiting LA again to see Grace and Joe's big day.
So the movie I saw on Saturday at the Metro was "The Sea Inside" (original Spanish title, Mar Adentro), which I highly recommend to anybody who likes foreign movies and dramas... I enjoyed it a lot.
For those who haven't heard about the movie, it's biopic about the real-life story of Ramon Sampedro, a quadroplegic Spanish man who fought for the legal right to end his own life. Crippled at young age in an ocean diving accident, he's completely dependant on others to live (or die, depending on your views). Obviously because of the themes, there have been a lot of comparisons to "Million Dollar Baby", but the two movies are both structurally and stylistically different.
In "The Sea Inside", the movie begins with Ramon already confined to life in bed because of the accident. The story focuses on Ramon's relationships to his family, and three women (Julia, Gene, & Rosa). Every person has their own views on whether or not Ramon's wish to die is valid, and while Ramon's character remains more or less the same throughout the whole movie, his contact with the other characters causes those characters to grow and change. Besides the three women, the main characters are his father, his older brother, his sister-in-law, and his nephew.
Whether or not you enjoy the movie probably depends on if you're willing to delve in the emotional complexity of each of the relationships that Ramon has, but I'd definitely want to watch the movie again. Like the ocean that is so central to the movie, there's a lot going on underneath the surface. The movie doesn't really force an opinion on the viewer, but it does ask us to think carefully... issues of death and how we die are invariably intertwined with issues of life and how we choose to live.
As a side note, watching the movie made me wish I spoke and understood Spanish... I'm sure it'd add a lot more to my understanding of the movie, just like my (limited) ability to understand Japanese and Mandarin Chinese helps when I watch movies from Japan and China.
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