Stronger

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We went to see the film Stronger, with little expectation. Only knew a little bit about the story of Jeff Baumen, who lost both of his legs during the Boston Marathon bombing in 2015.

What we didn’t expect was a tremendous film with incredible performances by Jake Gyllenhaal, Tatiana Maslany, and Miranda Richardson. Each of these actors could score an Oscar nomination.

It’s an incredibly moving, restrained tale that should resonate with everyone. An unexpected surprise of a film. Gripping, notable, and award worthy.

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Rising Strong

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Brene Brown is an auther and scholar who’s latest book is called, Rising Strong. She has previously completed notable work on vulnerability in Daring Greatly. This book was originally published in 2015, and I’m just getting around to reading it now.

Her work really challenges the reader to examing ones life, learn from her knowledge, and move forward in the world a little bit stronger, more self-aware.

She is also skilled at embracing the challenges of living a whole hearted life. Never says it is easy, but encourages everyone none-the less.

If you are interested in self-help books, this is certainly one to read.

Some quotes from the book below.

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New York Times

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The New York Times.

Had the fortunate opportunity in my life to live in NYC. While there the New York Times is arguably the only way true new yorkers get their news.

What I’m excited about is The New York Times really is a global leader in news. As much as we have been hearing attacks towards the news media, they really are the pillar of freedom and the First Amendment to the Constitution.

And worthy of our support.

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call me by your name

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Call me by your name is a novel by Andre Aciman. It is set in the Italian Riviera and is about a romance that forms between an adolescent boy and a summer guest. It is set in 1983.

It first got my attention when I saw the trailer for the upcoming film, based on the novel. It stars Armie Hammer and Timothee Chalamet and is directed by Luca Guadagino. Currently,  the film sits at 100% Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes and is not released until November 24th, 2017. So there is just enough time to get and read the book before the film is released.

Was curious about the novel because of the storyline of gay characters meeting each other unexpectedly, and via a romance. Plus, the film looks lush, well-made, and well produced. That it is starring Armie Hammer, was also intruiging as he is a fairly well known actor.

As it turns out, the novel is so well written in exploring and exposing so many emotions which come from love, lust, and romance. It unabashedly goes to the heart and body. It’s fascinating to me when gay stories are becoming more mainstream. Bigger directors, actors, and producers are geting behind different projects like never before. Perhaps the Oscar Best Picture winner, Moonlight, signaled a new future of more inclusive and diverse stories.

The novel evokes such longing, such desire, such passion. These are universal human experiences, and through the story of Elio and Oliver, we get a chance to swoon with the warmth of a summer romance in a little Italian town.

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Atomic Blonde

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Atmoic Blonde is a film based on a graphic novel, The Coldest City. It stars Charlize Theron and is directed by David Leitch.

While this film may not be for everyone, the violence is brutal and the plot can be tricky to follow, it still is a clever and interesting ride. Mostly due to the work of Charlize Theron.

If you enjoyed her performance in Mad Max:Fury Road, consider this a more lipstic version of her kick-ass persona. It’s like watching Jason Bourne with a mix of Deborah Harry and Madonna.

The 80s setting provides a nostalgic trip down memory lane. The music chosen pulls from some of the best of the era. “Father Figure”, “Voices Carry”, “99 Red Luft Balloons”.

The director is a stunt man, and therefore, the stunts are incredible. Unrelenting and so tightly choreographed. How they do it is a mystery.

If you are looking for a Berlin wall, platinum hair, neon glow, action-spy thriller, this is the movie for you.

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Originals

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Originals is a book by Adam Grant, and Organizational psychologist. First became aware of him through his TedTalk, “The Surprising Habits of Original Thinkers”. His approach to the suject matter is compelling and relatable. And he has the research to back it all up.

The book really digs into the concepts brought up in the talk, exploring a variety of aspects in discovering “originals” and they way they move about the world.

Often surprising, certainly unique. Word a listen and a read.

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My Life as a Zucchini

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My Life as a Zucchini is a wonderful French stop-motion animated film (Ma Vie de Courgette) which was nominated for an Academy Award. This heartfelt gem contains complex characters which happen to be made out of clay. Due to steady direction, solid writing, and deep compassion, it’s a special film.  It centers around the story of a boy, Icare, who is suddenly orphaned from his mother who nicknamed him “Zucchini”.

At the foster home he discovers a unique set of kids where he will be living. It there he learns that home is sometimes where you choose.

There are both French (with English subtitles) version, as well as an English version.

Be sure to check this one out.

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