Tuesday, January 25, 2011

'The King's Speech' gets 12 Oscar nominations - Yahoo! News

'The King's Speech' gets 12 Oscar nominations - Yahoo! News: "The British monarchy saga 'The King's Speech' leads the Academy Awards with 12 nominations, including best picture and acting honors for Colin Firth, Helena Bonham Carter and Geoffrey Rush.
Also nominated for best picture Tuesday were the psychosexual thriller 'Black Swan'; the boxing drama 'The Fighter'; the sci-fi blockbuster 'Inception'; the lesbian-family tale 'The Kids Are All Right'; the survival story '127 Hours'; the Facebook chronicle 'The Social Network'; the animated smash 'Toy Story 3'; the Western 'True Grit'; and the Ozarks crime thriller 'Winter's Bone.'"

The Same River Twice by Ted Mooney - Review

The Same River TwiceThe Same River Twice by Ted Mooney
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Having read a glowing review in the NYT Book Review, and having just been to Paris for the first time last fall, I was excited about getting Ted Mooney's new novel "The Same River Twice" from the library. It is extolled as a "literary thriller," and Mooney is a master wordsmith. Some of his descriptions are breathtaking.

I jumped into this book and found myself thoroughly immersed in the multifaceted plot and characters. A French woman, a dress designer, is paid as a courier to bring some historic and artistic banners out of Russia to a Paris art dealer, and ends up in a sticky situation in more ways than one. Her American filmmaker husband, meanwhile, while trying to work on his latest art film, discovers that some DVDs of one of his earlier now classic films include an ending very different from his own--yet nicely produced. Why?

There are other layers going on and you find yourself struggling to keep all the loose ends together. But about halfway through the book, the characters start doing surprising and unsympathetic things, and it only gets worse. Ultimately I found it disturbing, or at least unsatisfying. I wondered if I was the only one who felt this way, given the rather positive review I'd read, and checking a bunch of Amazon reviews confirmed my own disappointment in the book. It's not bad as thrillers go, but ultimately it's difficult to believe the characters or what happens with them. And the motif set up by the title (and several deja vu experiences throughout the book) never quite hits home. But it was nice to experience Paris again.

View all my reviews