Tag Archives: movies


Busy week! I won’t add everything here but here’s a few things.

We finally saw Star Wars Last Jedi. On our walk to Laurelhurst Theatre, I caught a picture of a new Forest for the Trees mural.

On the way back, it was raining pretty heavily and we were headed to Beulahland for a beer and to talk about the movie, when we caught the mural again, with a tree shimmering in the rain, looking like it was a continuation of the mural. I didn’t really capture it (I’d’ve needed more time and a better camera) but in real life, it completely took my breath away.

Editing this to add a link to an article about murals around Portland.

Friday, friends surprised us with tickets to see a magician. I am not going to lie, I was nervous about it as I am not a huge fan of audience participation. Mostly because I tend to get chosen (and that was true this night too, I was chosen to do things second most!). Venue was tiny – it was in the bar area of Hawthorne Theatre:

That’s the back row, nowhere to hide!

The show was great, thanks Marcio and Abby!! Nate Staniforth surprised me again and again, and was kind to people. I’d see him again for sure.


I’ve seen some super awesome animated movies recently after what felt like a long period where there were only a few here and there. Interesting to me that a bunch of them are out of France or are animated there.

  1. The Secret of Kells. You can find the trailer here on the movie’s website. The animation in this is interesting, with a lot of depth. I will own it for sure – I can’t imagine getting tired of watching it. If you have Netflix, it’s still in the Watch Instantly section so you can watch it anytime (I’ve only seen it 2 and 1/2 times, I swear).
  2. Dragon Hunters. The trailer is on its website and it is also under Watch Instantly on Netflix. The worlds created in here are layered and wonderful and dark. I also loved the variety of dragons in it – really clever. It’s based on a French cartoon that’s been around for a while. The credits are done by the Cure for the television show! I also love that their website has taught me that the French word for Dragon is Dragon. I could look at the backgrounds in this film forever.
  3. Despicable Me. Trailer is on the movie website as well as on apple. Over Christmas, I asked my niece and nephew what movie had been their favorite over the past year, and I hadn’t seen this one. My nephew really liked it so I put it into our movie queue to watch. When it came in the mail, it sat on the counter for a while because I wasn’t so sure I’d like it. It was really well done! There were parts that I really loved.

Random updates

Just because I forgot to post this last Wednesday, I’m going to post it now. It’s been nice to use this website to look back at the bands I’ve been seeing.

Laurelthirst has some great bands who play there, and Brian hadn’t been to Laurelthirst yet, so we had to go. We went to see Dolorean for their last Wednesday night Laurelthirst show. I knew the place fills up as the show starts, so we went early to get dinner (early being 5 p.m.). Laurelthirst’s food is really good – they currently win for my favorite Portland veggie burger (Portland veggie burgers tend to be either soft [blech] or sweet [not so much my style]). They also have good beer :)

Dolorean is great live. Brian had told me that I’d hate them, so I didn’t listen to them for a long time. I really like them though (take that, Brian! I’m contrary!), and the show was really cool. The place was completely packed too – people sharing booths and everyone looked like they were having a good time. Al James, the singer, said they were taking a break from live shows to work on a new album, so I’m really glad we went out that night.

There’s something really awesome about being out at a great bar on a summer night listening to a band and drinking beer that just can’t be beat.

Last night, we were supposed to go to Clay’s for dinner, but when we go there, we found out they are only open Wed-Fri. At that point, we were both hungry and kinda feeling like eating out, so we wandered over to East Burn (why’d they change their logo?). I got to try a beer from Upright Brewing, which is a new brewery in the Left Bank building. Farmhouse Ale was quite good – it tasted like a Belgium, and was fruity. Looking forward to trying some more of their stuff. Didn’t hurt that apparently all beers are $2 on Tuesdays at East Burn. Fun. We want to walk there some night and try some of their infused gins.

This was followed up by heading to Laurelhurst theater to see Pixar’s Up. Up was good, although it made me cry thinking about Brian’s dad. Also managed to swing by Beulahland, which I had been missing. It’s probably a good thing that Beulahland isn’t walking distance for me because I’d be there waaaay too much.

Alright. Sorry about the randomness – had a bout of insomnia after a bad dream at 2 a.m., so I’m scattered today. Which is why I’m not working on fixing the layout here.

Monday, Monday. Ahhhh ahhhh ahhhhh ah ah ah.

On Monday nights, we’ve been heading to Old Town Pizza on MLK to watch movies. The first night we went, it was old (1940s and 1950s) beer commercials. They were completely awesome. One of them completely startled me – I had no idea that in-your-face foreplay was on TV back then. I’ve looked all over the internet and can’t find the one that scandalized me, which is disappointing, it was really cool. I wonder why beer companies don’t use their old commercials? It’d definitely make me pay more attention to them.

In any event, it was pretty cool to watch them listening to the thwap thwap thwap of the film project (16mm, Brian said). Not to mention having a beer or two while doing that.

Last night’s was crash test dummy films from the Ford Motor company. Also good, but even better was the 1950s PSA-like movie for teenagers on not drinking and driving. Old Town doesn’t particularly turn the music off in the restaurant while we watch these, so it was a bit surreal to watch it to electronica music, watching it storm outside and drinking a beer.

The guy who does this didn’t remember what he had planned for next week – he says he just grabs them out of his basement. He’s quite a character too as he sets up the film. I think we are starting to make friends with the bartender too, who is from Edinbourough. He’s fond of Brian’s full name, which makes me giggle. And I was amused this week because he was less one beard and Brian was less one head of hair. Almost timed, that.

Pretty cool night, except for the fact that when we went out to get in my car, we noticed that my car was spraypainted sometime between Sunday night and Monday evening. Brian had moved my car to the street while we were gardening because he wanted to pull some weeds in our driveway and I left it there knowing we were going somewhere Monday night. The morons didn’t get Brian’s car thankfully, but they clearly thought about it because they spraypainted a penis on the street in front of his car. Reported to the police, of course, and my car has already had it removed. I’m working with the city to get the sidewalk and street penises removed, so hopefully that’s that. I’ve got enough of my family in me to think that if they’d like to do that again, there will be BAD. CONSEQUENCES. But all in all, part of living in a city, I get that.

Last weekend

Bagdad sign at night

The Bagdad sign at night.

I’m quiet because I’ve not been doing very much that I felt like writing on here. Quick notes of interest –

Katie bought a house in Milwaukie! The one with the “ie” rather than the “ee.” She doesn’t like the cold anymore than I do. Heh. Congrats Katie, I’ve started lifting weights again in preparation for slogging boxes. hehe

The Bagdad

The Bagdad on Hawthorne

Thursday night, Brian and I went to the Bagdad theater for the first time. We had dinner and watched everyone on Hawthorne totally loving spring.

The Bagdad is a McMenamins like Kennedy School. The Bagdad is where the premiere of “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” and “My Own Private Idaho” was held. Neat. We were there to see “The Black Hole” which I’ve not seen since I was a little kid, and holy cow, I’m surprised that ending didn’t stay with me. We also got to try a McMenamins beer that we hadn’t had yet – Bagdad Ale.

Here’s a mural from next to the table.


Detail of mural at the Bagdad


Farmers’ Market at PSU – first of the year
In other news, the Farmers’ market at PSU opened for the season – so exciting. I may have gone a little overboard with my joy. I got three types of mushrooms, freshly caught salmon (which reminds me that I need to finish it today), carrots, garlic, garlic greens, pastries, oh, and a lot of other things.

My strange vegetable to try was sea beans, also known as samphire or sea asparagus. The farmer told me I could just eat them, which I have been, or grill fish with a layer of them on top, which I also did. The other farmer sad they are awesome in sushi, but since that’s not on the list for this week, I’ll probably need another bag of them before I can use them. They taste like the ocean (makes sense, they are harvested from the tides of Oregon) and a little like cucumbers. I really like them, and will be adding them to our repertoire.

Nothing else much going on – I miss the arrow keys on my laptop but am learning to live without them, so I think I will wait to replace the keyboard. I’m hoping to get some hikes in this week, and if so, should have some pretty pictures to post to flickr.

Movies I’ve been watching

I watched two great movies I missed from the 80s. Not sure how I missed either of them, they were right up my alley.

Dragonslayer from 1981 is a traditional fantasy movie, complete with dragons and wizards. It was well-acted, and the special effects were really great for the time period. You could tell the people who made the film really believed in what they were doing, and loved being part of it. It was a great find.

Return to Oz from 1985 was the movie we watched last night. I’m guessing that it slipped past me because I was a rotten teenager, but that’s my only guess because I really loved the Oz books when I was a kid. I’ve written about how I picked strawberries in the fields to be able to afford first editions of the series, and I used to have the library get them for me from all over – sometimes from the Library of Congress.

So I’m surprised I hadn’t at least heard of this before this year. It was a Walt Disney movie which worried me, but it was really well done. Brian Henson was involved with the special effects, and you could tell it was done at the same time as Labyrinth. Gotta love a children’s movie where the main child actor is sent for shock therapy in the first 20 minutes. There were parts of this that were really dark, but the really out there stuff that startled all came from the books.

I was impressed at how well they cast Tic Toc (and wow, watching the extras and finding out how the actor and costume worked was wild) and Ozma (you’d think the book drawings were based on the movie rather than the other way around) but the Scarecrow was rather disturbing.

In any event, it is not a movie I’d probably let a smaller child watch just because it would be pretty nightmare inducing, but it was wonderfully done and really worth watching. I’ll probably end up owning it at some point.

Random ramblings

Two nights ago we went and saw Prince Caspian at the St John’s Theater. I don’t know that I will need to see another Walt Disney Narnia movie again, I’ll just leave it at that. I don’t think they quite got what C.S. Lewis was saying. It was nice to wander around in St John’s – ever since we were there for Blue Moon, I’ve wanted to go back and take a look at the downtown area. Because it was a Wednesday night, it was pretty quiet, but we want to go back to check it out more later. If any of you have a suggestion of places to go there, send me an email! We had the theater mostly to ourselves – just one other couple in the place.

Yesterday, I tried fresh peas for the first time I remember (I am sure I’ve had them before from my mom or someone, but I probably didn’t know it). I shelled them, and steamed them. We tried one or two raw – they were quite good, and Gretchen will really like them that way too. I ate them with nothing on them once I steamed them, mmmm, very good. Quite a different thing than the canned stuff. If they are still in season when Maggie and Matt are here, we will sit on the back patio together and shell peas for dinner. Yeah, I’m going to be the weird aunt, no doubt about it.