Nancy’s Reads & Reels: “The Middlesteins: A Novel” by Jami Attenberg, “Flight” starring Denzel Washington & “Lincoln” starring Daniel Day-Lewis.

Read a book or go see a movie.

The Middelsteins: A Novel by Jami Attenberg is the story of Richard and Edie Middelstein and their children, Benny and Robin. Edie is eating herself to death and Benny and Robin try in vain to save their mother. The story begins at the end of Edie’s life with flashbacks of how she got the way she is, which is a very difficult if not an impossible person. Edie is an attorney and Richard is a pharmacist. Richard can’t take her picking on him anymore and just as her health is in the balance he leaves her. Her children are furious with him but he just can’t take it anymore. Family sagas always interest me.

Flight is Denzel Washington’s movie and he plays it to the hilt. He’s an alcoholic who has lied his way through life up until he lands a malfunctioning plane and is at first a hero but then it’s discovered that he was under the influence. Yikes! How’s he going to lie his way out of this mess. Go see the movie and you’ll find out.

Movies and books about addiction are interesting because, although it’s thought to be a disease, some question that definition and feel that it’s a weakness that can and should be controlled by the individual. I’ve had some interesting discussions on this subject.

I thought Lincoln a great (I use the term advisedly) movie and Daniel Day-Lewis deserves the Academy Award. All the supporting actors were outstanding. Some in our group felt it went on too long but most will agree that it did not. This movie might make some of us want to dig into books about Lincoln and the Civil War.

So many movies I’m looking forward to:  Les Miserables (saw it on stage in New York some years ago), Life of Pi (read the book and it was outstanding) and Anna Karinina. Take a break from shopping and go see a movie—that’s my advice.

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Decaturette November 28, 2012 at 09:56 PM
The movie "Lincoln" was indeed great. And so was Lincoln. I often think of how much better off the nation might have been if he had not been shot. Maybe no Reconstruction, maybe no Jim Crow South, maybe women would have gotten the vote earlier.


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