Monday, 25 April 2011

Hoping That 5@50 Can Mask The Toothache

We're off to Manchester again tomorrow for the matinee performance of 5 @ 50 at the Royal Exchange. It's got a great cast and the subject matter (the play portrays five women celebrating reaching their fiftieth birthdays) is appropriate to our age group and may touch a few raw nerves. So, on the face of it, it should be an entertaining afternoon. The only problem is that, yet again, our perceptions of the play have been coloured by poor reviews in the press (perhaps we should stop reading them) with both The Times and The Guardian less than enthusiastic. One likened it to a British "Sex And The City" which would not be bad but then added "the films rather than the TV series" and as the films were universally hammered by the critics that's not a great comparison. Oh well. We should form our own opinions I suppose and at least we're going without high expectations.

Before that, I've got to try and get to see the dentist. That isn't my tooth in the photo but it's almost exactly how one of my teeth looks today after a huge filling dislodged at the weekend leaving me with nothing but one edge to the tooth and a gaping hole. I'm pretty sure that there is no alternative but to have the tooth pulled out (that was the outcome of the one in the photo) which is a pity as I haven't got too many of these large double teeth left now. I suppose that's what to expect when you retire but I'm not ready to leave my teeth in a glass of Steradent every night just yet.

Last week's Orange Wednesday film "Unknown" might have been called "It's Complicated" if Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin hadn't got there first. Starring Liam Neeson as bio chemist Dr Martin Harris, the action takes place in Berlin and it all kicks off when Harris is involved in a car crash that leaves him close to death. He makes a speedy recovery but is extremely confused - even more so when he returns to his hotel and finds his wife doesn't recognise him and an impostor seems to have taken his place. I'm not giving away much there as you would have got this much from the trailer. The action packed movie follows Harris' attempt to prove that he is Harris and discover precisely what is going on. It's a good plot with a very interesting, unexpected and clever outcome and we both enjoyed the film. Sadly for me, Neeson's performance was too "shouty" but that was the only negative in an otherwise entertaining and interesting thriller. It's probably too late to catch it in cinemas now but look out for it when it airs on Sky.

One film that we are looking forward to is The Help which gets its release in the USA in August. Marion and I both read Kathryn Stockett's excellent book on which it is based during the last couple of weeks. It's a moving story about race in the deep south in the 60's seen through the eyes of two black maids and a young white woman, a writer, who attempts to give them a voice and show the world the prejudice suffered. Its not all serious though and the book has plenty of humour which I hope is captured in the film. We've got to stock up on books for our holidays in a couple of weeks. Marion has bought a Kindle so we can take loads with us.

One thing we haven't bothered with this year is Britain's Got Talent. As I said last year on the old Instanta blog it seemed to demonstrate that Britain hasn't got talent and, judging from the most popular clip from this year's series on YouTube to date, this seems to be even more the case this year.