I just got back from the movie theater where I saw The Kings Speech. It was a brilliant movie and certainly worthy of its Oscar nominations, as well as other awards/nominations.
After the death of his father King George V (Michael Gambon) and the scandalous abdication of King Edward VIII (Guy Pearce), Bertie (Colin Firth) who has suffered from a debilitating speech impediment all his life, is suddenly crowned King George VI of England. With his country on the brink of war and in desperate need of a leader, his wife, Elizabeth (Helena Bonham Carter), the future Queen Mother, arranges for her husband to see an eccentric speech therapist, Lionel Logue (Geoffrey Rush). After a rough start, the two delve into an unorthodox course of treatment and eventually form an unbreakable bond. With the support of Logue, his family, his government and Winston Churchill (Timothy Spall), the King will overcome his stammer and deliver a radio-address that inspires his people and unites them in battle.
Based on the true story of King George VI, THE KING’S SPEECH follows the Royal Monarch’s quest to find his voice.
It was an inspirational movie mixed with the right amount of drama and humor to keep you engaged throughout. Even if you have never had a speech impediment, the underlying themes of family expectations, the weight of those expectations from family or others, lack of self-confidence, and fear are all things that most of us can relate to in some way. Colin Firth did an amazing job with his role. It was also nice to see Helena Bonham Carter play a “sane”/”normal” role of a loving and supporting wife. It was a great representation of that period in history.
Have you seen this movie? What did you think of it?
Today is Chinese New Year.
According to holidayspot.com
“Chinese New Year starts with the New Moon on the first day of the new year and ends on the full moon 15 days later. The 15th day of the new year is called the Lantern Festival, which is celebrated at night with lantern displays and children carrying lanterns in a parade. The Chinese calendar is based on a combination of lunar and solar movements. The lunar cycle is about 29.5 days. In order to “catch up” with the solar calendar the Chinese insert an extra month once every few years (seven years out of a 19-yearcycle). This is the same as adding an extra day on leap year. This is why, according to the solar calendar, the Chinese New Year falls on a different date each year. New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day are celebrated as a family affair, a time of reunion and thanksgiving. The celebration was traditionally highlighted with a religious ceremony given in honor of Heaven and Earth, the gods of the household and the family ancestors. The sacrifice to the ancestors, the most vital of all the rituals, united the living members with those who had passed away. Departed relatives are remembered with great respect because they were responsible for laying the foundations for the fortune and glory of the family.”
Year 2011 is the Year of the Rabbit by the Chinese calendar.
You can read about the history of Chinese New Year here and the traditions here.
While I am not Chinese, I do enjoy learning about different ethnicities and history. I went with some coworkers out for lunch yesterday to celebrate the New Year. We went to a Korean BBQ buffet, where I got to try so many different foods that I had never had before and we cooked our own different meats. After we ate, we had a small gift exchange, as is customary with this holiday (according to what I read). I ended up receiving a small Buddha.
Did any of you celebrate Chinese New Year? What did you do?