The Book of Henry is certainly not a good film, but calling it a bad one doesn’t seem to fit; it falls short of the mark, but not in the way a truly bad film does. Rather, it fails to answer two vital questions—who is it for, and what is it about?—and it’s hard to imagine anyone being satisfied with the end result.
I may not have called it, but I came pretty damn close – and I’m quite happy to be ever so slightly wrong.
Truth be told, I’m not a Pepsi man. I’m not even really a cola man; I prefer a good Pepper-style soda or ginger ale most of the time. And when it comes to the major colas, I frankly think Coca-Cola is superior.
But when Pepsi put out their “1893” line of experimental sodas, I was intrigued. I meant to try the first two flavors (Original and Ginger) some time ago, but that was around the time I cut back my soda intake significantly and I ended up never having any. But recently, noting the release of two additional flavors (Citrus and Black Currant), I resolved to try all four and write them up.
So here are the four members of the Pepsi 1893 roster. Let’s see if Pepsi bests Coke at branching out into the craft-soda market.
I’ll proceed with caution regarding ONYS’ other flavors, but at least I know they have one flavor I can savor.
Here’s hoping I can track down Cola & Berry. That seems like their most interesting flavor.
So I said when reviewing ONYS’ Peach flavor. Imagine my delight when, a few months later, I happened upon several bottles of Cola & Berry in a World Market. I bought it and drank it promptly, recording my impressions as I did so. Apologies for not writing up my thoughts sooner, but I simply never got around to it.
The following review is as verbatim from my notes as possible, so I apologize if the review is a bit rough around the edges.
The 70th Cannes Film Festival kicks off today, and to mark the occasion I’ve decided to evaluate – in my own poor way – the films in contention for the festival’s top prize, the Palme d’Or.
I have provided synopses for all the contenders and trailers, when available. I have also taken a stab at guessing who’ll actually win the Palme, though my methods in doing so are wholly unscientific (unless you consider hunches to have a science of their own).
Apologies, by the way, for not breaking down the Un Certain Regard contenders and non-competitive screenings. Time and space did not allow.
I’d known about Poil de Carotte for many years, my father having spoken very highly of it, but despite his regard (and the general regard of the critics), the film has drifted into moderate obscurity in recent years, possibly in part due to the decline in writer-director Julien Duvivier’s reputation.
However, it’s now available through Criterion’s Eclipse series (in a set with other Duvivier films of the era), and I was finally able to see it…and I’m damned glad I did.
In case you didn’t know, I like movies.
And more than that, I like going to the movies. Watching a movie at home, there are all too many distractions. In the theater, your attention is compelled. Distractions are discouraged, even penalized. In the theater, the film rules all. So I go to theater quite a bit.
But it wasn’t always that way. Growing up, going to the movies was a comparatively rare treat. It wasn’t like we couldn’t afford it – once my dad got a DVD player we began amassing a collection which now numbers in the thousands. But we didn’t go to the cinema as a matter of course.
The first film I can definitively remember seeing in the theater was The Pagemaster. I’m sure there were others before it, but I no longer have even a shadow of a memory of them. I saw Titanic at age 8 and said “Eww!” at the sex scene; I saw The Phantom Menace and hated it intensely; we went to the next town over to see Fantasia 2000 because it didn’t play everywhere in its non-IMAX release.
And of course, we saw The Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Spider-Man, and so forth – we also saw both the 1998 Godzilla and Godzilla 2000. (I can also claim to have seen Alexander in the theater, for what that’s worth.) But for the most part, we watched movies at home. In 2006 – not, admittedly, a banner year for cinema – I think we only went once, to see The DaVinci Code.
It was the next year – March 9, 2007, at 9:30 p.m., to be exact – that things began to change. I didn’t become a ravenous film-goer overnight, but visit by visit my cinephilia grew, and the end result is this article; a trip down memory lane, and a long lane it is. So join me, if you will, and remember.