Sunday, 13 September 2015

August Favourites

I'm a bit late to the table with this month's favourites and must apologise for this.  The month went by so quickly, probably because we were away on holiday for two weeks, and getting ready to go prior to that, so it seems to have sped past. My favourites are mostly films, books and TV programs, as I hadn't really been using or buying anything new, instead saving my money towards the holiday.

In between getting ready and going away, I did have time to watch a bit of Netflix, which we hadn't really been doing a lot of lately.  We finally finished watching our way through series two of Danish crime drama The Bridge, which we both enjoyed immensely.  I have a Danish friend at the gym who assures me there is a third series coming, which I am now looking forward to.

More recently, however, I have actually found a new Netflix favourite, whilst flicking through and it is a show called Rita. It's another Danish series, but not a crime series.  It is about a teacher, who is a single mother to three almost grown up children and it's a lighthearted, humorous and well written series about her life.

Although on the surface she seems competent, popular and always has the answers, beneath the surface, life is more complicated and doesn't run quite so smoothly. It's definitely worth a watch. I find it quirky, irreverent and very entertaining.

Reading favourites this month have included this book that I read whilst on holiday.

It was an interesting read and considers how many people are finding themselves dissatisfied and overwhelmed by having too much 'stuff' these days.  I enjoyed reading it and have reviewed it in a separate post, so I won't go into any detail here.

Another reading favourite in August has definitely been this book called Wild by Cheryl Strayed, which has been made into a movie starring Reese Witherspoon. I deliberately haven't seen the film yet, as I bought this book and wanted to read it before I saw the movie. I know that if I saw the movie first, I would probably not bother to read the book.

This book is one of the best books I've read for a while.  It tells the story of a young woman, who after losing her 45 year old mum to cancer, and then experiencing the breakdown of her short lived marriage due to her own infidelity, followed by a dalliance with drug taking, decides to embark alone on a 1200 mile hike along part of the Pacific Crest Trail, which is 2600 miles long and starts on the US border with Mexico and travels the whole length of the western side of the US, up to the border with Canada. This book charts her physical and emotional journey for the three months that she is on the Trail, the dangers and trials faced and endured, the people she met along the way and the emotional healing that took place.

It is such an interesting and uplifting book, and similarities can definitely be drawn with the book Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert, in that the journey she embarks upon is not just a physical one, but an emotional/spiritual one. One that she hopes will help her retrieve the person that she used to be, before her life was turned upside down by loss and grief.  I loved reading this book and was intending to take it to the US and read it whilst there, but I so enjoyed it, that I managed to finish it before we left.  I would highly recommend this book and I now can't wait to see one of my favourite actresses play the part of Cheryl in the movie.

Talking of Elizabeth Gilbert's book, the film version of Eat, Pray, Love is now available on Netflix to watch, so unable to resist the temptation, the night before we headed off on holiday, whilst painting toenails, plucking eyebrows, etc. I sat down and watched it.  Julia Roberts played the lead character in the film, who goes on a journey across the world, to learn about food and language, spirituality and love. Although the film got only two stars on Netflix, I thought it was okay (probably because I enjoyed the book) and would recommend it, although it does skim over the story somewhat and some of the characters aren't explored in as much detail as in the book.

On the subject of films, I also managed to watch the Second Best Marigold Hotel, whilst on the flight to the US.  I enjoyed the first film and this one didn't disappoint either.  I also watched Judi Dench in Philomena on TV in Florida and enjoyed this film too.  On the way back I watched one of my favourite actors Bradley Cooper in his new film Aloha which is set on the island of Hawaii.  I really enjoyed this film.  It was funny and heart warming and Bradley was looking as handsome as ever in it.  (Swoon).

So, that's about it for my film, book and TV favourites this month. I realise that it's not my usual kind of favourites post, but next month there may be a few more interesting favourites to share. I've already shared a few US food favourites with you in a previous post recently and hope you enjoyed reading it. Did you have any particular favourite things last month?

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