My Favorite Christmas Movies

Hey my loves,

in today’s blog post I am sharing with you six of my absolute favorite Christmas movies that I actually love to watch every year. I love Christmas movies so much, they are always so full of love and usually have a happy ending! So here are my Top 6!

Die Hard, Elf & Home Alone

Now, listen to me on this one. It plays on Christmas so it is a Christmas movie! Haha xD Also I just love Bruce Willis! Check it out here: Die Hard

How could you not love Buddy? This one alway makes me smile so much! If you haven’t seen it yet, first of all: WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN?, haha xD Check it out here: ELF

A CLASSIC! And by far one of the most well-known Christmas movies if you ask me. Check it out here: Home Alone

How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Love Actually & The Holiday

I vividly remember watching “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” for the first time, so I believe this is the first mover, like ever, that I actually remember watching each year when it was Christmas eve. Check it out here: How the Grinch Stole Christmas 

Love Actually is the only romantic movie that I can watch over and over and over again and still get as emotional as I got the first time around. And how could you not love it! Check it out here: Love Actually

The Holiday is another classic! When I watched it the first time I wasn’t sure if I would like it, but at the end of the movie I was sobbing and happy at the same time and it quickly became one of my absolute favorites. Check it out here: The Holiday

What are your favorite Christmas movies? Tell me in the comments below, I am always up for new movie ideas. 

I wish you all a wonderful day!

XoXo, Jasmin.

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Still Alice – A Review – @OriginalSGreenD

This year, Julianne Moore won the Academy Award for Best Actress for her portrayal in the movie “Still Alice”. When I went to see the movie at the theater with my mother, we didn’t yet know it was based on a book by the same name. My mother found the book by accident and immediately bought it because she thought, if the book is just half as good as the movie that was made from it, I need to have it. And she was right.

Now, if you haven’t read the book, it’s alright. The movie is an excellent adaption, the differences in content between the two mediums are marginal. Also, if you haven’t seen the movie either, no worries, you can read this entry anyways, because, logically thinking, there are no spoilers for this story. Alice is a woman who finds out she has Alzheimer’s disease, and once you learn this – which is very early on in the story – you know what’s going to happen. This is not a feel-good movie with a happy ending. Alzheimer’s is not curable, and its symptoms can only get worse as the disease progresses. Hence, you already know the starting and the ending point before you have even opened the book: the story begins with Alice showing symptoms like short-term memory loss and difficulty finding the right words, and it ends with Alice not remembering who and where she is. However, it’s not the ending that counts so much as the how she got there.

It begins with Alice Howland, renowned professor at Harvard with a PhD in Psychology (in the movie she is a linguist, while in the book she is a psychologist also researching in the field of linguistics and psycholinguistics; I guess for the movie they changed it for simplicity’s sake), holding a speech in front of hundreds of students, something she does every week, and suddenly missing the word “lexicon”. It will not come to her, no matter how hard she tries remembering. She ends up paraphrasing it and moving on without paying it much mind, but these kinds of issues start occurring more and more often. At one point she goes on a run around Harvard square, where she lives with her husband and has been working for the last 25 years, and suddenly loses orientation, not knowing where she is. A while later she forgets to visit a conference in Chicago that she had been preparing for extensively. Alice knows something is up, and she goes to see a doctor, and she is diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s disease at only 50 years old.

From that point on, Alice’s symptoms grow steadily worse. And for Alice, losing her mind means losing herself. For someone who has defined their entire life and being by their intelligence, as a Harvard professor probably does, losing their memory means losing everything. Alice knows she will forget who her children are, and who her husband is, and to prevent that, she writes herself a list of questions, like “where do you live?” and “when is your oldest daughter’s birthday?”, and she says to herself, when I cannot answer these questions anymore, I will kill myself. The novel shows Alice’s progressing deterioration by letting her answer these questions frequently, and every time she gives these answers to herself, we see that every time a small piece of information is missing, right to the point near the ending when the answers are only fragmentary or downright wrong. But when Alice tries to kill herself, she is already too far gone and just forgets before she can go through with it.

This novel is very hard to read. Not because it is overly complicated, or because its style is poor, but because you read it and you feel it, you can understand and perfectly relate to anything Alice goes through, until the ending when Alice doesn’t recognize her family anymore, gives them nicknames like “the nice man” or “the actress”. You cannot help but get involved in the story, and it hurts. If a story can achieve this, it’s fantastic. “Still Alice” is a fantastic story, brilliantly structured, well written. I’m not sure if I’ll ever read it again, but if you haven’t yet, you should do so.

Miri

Follow Miri on her Twitter: @OriginalSGreenD

Diverge

What I want to talk about this Motivational Monday is something that has been on my mind for a while now, rooted in the behavior of a friend of mine who is unfortunately loaded with preconceptions about a lot of the modern media. A few months ago, another friend (for privacy’s sake, let’s call her Daisy) and I struck a deal: She would go and see “Godzilla” with me, a movie I really, really badly wanted to see in 3D, under the condition that I go and see “Divergent” with her. I had read and heard reviews about “Divergent” from news outlets that I completely trusted in their opinions on movies because they had never called a movie good that I detested, and those reviews were unfortunately mostly negative, so I did not particularly feel like watching “Divergent”. But like I said, I really wanted to see “Godzilla” and since this was Daisy’s one condition, I said, “Okay then, let’s do it”.
I had low expectations, and a lot of them were fulfilled. This is not a movie review of “Divergent”, but in a nutshell, it was a mix of recycled ideas from “The Hunger Games” and a dash of “Twilight”, with a few minor plot holes. But you know what? I let myself enjoy it. I know this is not the best movie I’ll ever see, and emotionally it did not quite reach me, but I was entertained. I had fun. The actors were good, the story had a few original ideas that were really good, the images were beautiful and the heroine’s love interest was a seriously hot guy. What can you want more in a movie from which you expected nothing?


Now, here’s what I am trying to say. If I had said no to Daisy’s condition, I would have missed this movie. I would have lost not only two really fun movie nights with a dear old friend of mine, but also the opportunity to be well entertained by something I did not expect to entertain me. I would be missing this experience now, and in retrospect I can say with certainty it’s an experience I would not want to miss, under no circumstances. And that is why I decided to forget preconceptions when it comes to media now. I decided that I would not let myself be led by preconceptions in deciding what movie I would watch next, or what TV show, or what book I was going to read next, because I could be missing out. I watched “Escape Plan” with Stallone and Schwarzenegger, another movie towards which I had next to no expectations, and I had a lot of fun watching it. I watched one of the “Universal Soldier” flicks with Van Damme, and well, it was as bad as I thought, but at least now I know with certainty. What this gave to me was the realization that whatever you think a story might be, it might be the complete opposite, and you’ll never know if you don’t try it yourself. So what if I detest Mel Gibson? I’m still going to watch “The Expendables 3”. So what if Uwe Boll’s movies were 90 percent garbage? His next one might be better. So what if Charlie Sheen is unappealing and a bad actor? “Anger Management” might still be funny, and I sure as hell will give it a try.


The point I am trying to make to you is this: you can not know whether you like something if you have not tried it yourself. This friend of mine who is loaded with preconceptions is missing out on a world of fun because she thinks she knows what’s good based on… well, I really don’t know what she thinks her opinion is based on. As far as I can tell, it’s based on nothing. Don’t do that. Don’t be this person who thinks they know it all when it’s clear they don’t. You will be making a huge mistake. That’s why, for this Motivational Monday, I am daring you to watch a movie that you never wanted to watch, for whatever reason, and go through with it until the bitter end. Diverge from your usual patterns. You might be surprised. In any case, then you’ll know for sure. Because in my book, there are few things more unappealing than not being open to change.

Go follow Miri on Twitter: OriginalSGreenD

“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I – I took the one less travelled by, And that has made all the difference.” ~ Robert Frost