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Mature Love: WORDS and PICTURES

Friday, June 6, 2014

When you think summer movies, you think blockbusters, flying super heroes, franchises and Disney, all of which I love.  But I have to admit it was really refreshing to see two small and thoughtful films back to back - Words & Pictures and The Fault in Our Stars (click for post) coincidentally both are about love of literature and falling in love while dealing with physical limitations beyond one's control.

In Words and Pictures Dina Delsanto (Juliette Binoche) is a successful, New York painter struck down in the prime of her creative life by Rheumatoid Arthritis, and finds herself teaching fine art in a small town in Maine, to honor students at a prestigious high school academy. The first day of class, Dina states something to the effect that words can lie and deceive, but images are truth.

Already teaching at the Academy is Jack Marcus (Clive Owen) a once lauded and published writer whose glory days are fading fast, so he becomes what most tortured and blocked writers become - an alcoholic; nightly drinking several vodkas w/extra limes and taking to eating lunch in his car where a flask is hidden away.  But he's also fun loving and passionate about language, often good-naturedly demanding fellow faculty play his multi-syllable word game and interested in inspiring his students to think about the impact eloquent writers and speakers have had in history.

When Marcus, already attracted to Delsanto, hears her disparaging marks about words vs pictures, he throws down a gauntlet and challenges her to prove "a picture is worth a thousand words" but mostly he just wants a reason to connect with her, even if it's in mock battle.

In terms of the student story lines, young actors, and often overly pedantic dialogue, this movie will never be the next Dead Poets Society. But in terms of exploring that time in life when you thought you had it all together and now on the other side of 40 you're starting over, and worse yet, your body is betraying you... not just Dina dealing with the pain of RA, but Jack's alcoholism is as much a physical disease as mental... this is what the movie gets right. Along with the juxtaposition of two artists, one eager and brimming with creative energy, but struggling to give life to that inspiration. The other having lost inspiration and struggling to find that part of himself again.

hmmm... my description sounds darker then the movie's actual tone- director, Fred Schepisi & writer Gerald Di Pego, have created something far from an angst ridden drama, it's just the themes I described keep it from being an ordinary rom/com, albeit for an over 30 audience.

When the credits rolled I was delighted to find out all the wonderful paintings in the movie are actually Binoche's own work! Turns out she's an artist of some caliber and has been for years.

Around the Web

Ever since receiving a commission from the Cahiers du Cinéma for a series of portraits in July 2007, Ms. Binoche has not stopped painting during her movie shoots. But she had been painting off set for far longer, and first showed her work publicly in the 1990s (in 1991 her art work was featured in the movie The Lovers on the Bridge, in which she starred as a painter, and in 1993 she exhibited a series of work done in collaboration with French artist Christian Fenouillat). Favoring portraits, Ms. Binoche has not only depicted many of the famous directors with whom she has worked but also characters she has played, in what is a rather unique spin on the self-portrait tradition. “In-Eyes” will feature 29 triptychs, each including one of these “in character” self-portraits, a portrait of the related movie’s director, and a poem addressed to the director. These works offer a personal view, full of emotion, of the key encounters that have influenced Juliette Binoche’s movie career... READ MORE

T &T's LAMB Score: 3 outta 5

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Food n Film: CHEF

Food n Film: CHEF
Much of the movie centers around the father/son relationship, and how much they learn from each other. But the real star of the film is all the food preparation, every other scene made me groan with want of everything up on that screen! Particularly the perfectly roasted and rubbed brisket, the crispy fat of the pork belly, sizzling bacon and the much ballyhooed Chocolate Lava Cake. READ POST

Food n Film: CHOCOLAT

Food n Film: CHOCOLAT
If you’re a foodie movie lover who saw Lasse Hallström’s The Hundred Foot Journey (see T&T post), this summer you may be wondering what delicious visual journey might be awaiting you in the theater next. Well, how about a look back at his film Chocolat (2000), which stars French actress Juliette Binoche, Judi Dench and Johnny Depp. Hallström’s has a special talent for turning cooking into a dramatic movie journey...READ MORE

Eater Philly - All


...young Hassan, a soulful-eyed boy with lush, thick eye lashes, places his face into the sea urchin basket, and breathes in the exotic briny scent. He sticks his fingers into the aquatic ooze, takes it to his mouth and is transfixed by the taste. The vendor, oblivious to the thrusting arms of frenzied women, notices the boy and realizes he is the only one worthy of this oceanic prize; he is the one who can “truly taste.” ... READ MORE

Food n Film: JULIE & JULIA

Food n Film: JULIE & JULIA
Personally, I like the unevenness of it, because I fell in love with the post World War II, Parisian sights, sounds, food and romance between Julia and Paul. I always felt a bit jarred back into reality when the scenes returned to Julie's meltdowns and cramped kitchen.READ POST

Food n Film: EAT PRAY LOVE

Food n Film: EAT PRAY LOVE
Six months into my 38th year of this life, I had my first panic attack. I didn't know that's what it was until months later. Symptom after symptom starting piling up on me until there were days I could no longer move my arms or neck. The doctors told me I was suffering from an auto-immune condition that they felt was most likely Lupus. And so began my much deeper journey and exploration into the world of spirit, alternative medicine, yoga, meditation and Eat, Pray, Love. READ POST

Philadelphia Magazine » Blog » Foobooz


With a film like this, food plays a main character in the story and I was lucky enough to get an interview with the film's Food Stylist, Janine Kalesis.READ POST

Food n Film: WAITRESS

Food n Film: WAITRESS
In this 2007 film, Keri Russell stars as Jenna - a desolate diner waitress seeking solace in the art of pie-making. Trapped in an unhappy marriage, she’s eager to escape her husband and her small-town hell and sets about to make a run for it by entering an out of town pie baking contest. READ POST


Those of us in attendance were not only given the opportunity to see Babette's Feast, the Oscar winning, Danish film, considered one of the all-time great "food films"; we also got to taste Babette's menu! READ POST

15 Top Food in Film Flicks

15 Top Food in Film Flicks
Cozy Quilt of Food Movies, we'll add more patches as T &T discovers more films where food plays the biggest "roll"

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Philly Food and Film

Videographer Oliver Gallini 5 min short featuring organic-chemist-turned-chef, Townsend Wentz, who got his start at The Four Seasons Philadelphia.


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About This Blog

is about discovering what I find pleasing in screening & eating - in case you missed it, the name is a play on Tinseltown using the Tines of a Fork.

Feel free to send me info on a film or new restaurant you'd like me to highlight.

Will there ever be a cap on movie prices?

Will we one day pay $20 a pop?

Why don't we pay on a scale?

A crap movie like everything Adam Sandler has ever done should cost about $4.50.
Big action movies like"Lord of the Rings", "Iron Man," "Transformers" are worth $10.
Woody Allen movie or something like "Silver Linings Playbook" $6-$7.
A chick flick or light comedy $5.75 and most Indie Films $5.25.

You could even do it by seasons - all summer block busters from May to August - $10
Sept - November 15th $3.50 - $4
Back to $10 for Thanksgiving and Christmas etc...

Or you can do it by A Actors ($9 - $10), B Actors ($6 - $7) TV actors on the big screen ($3.50 - $4)

Surely I'm not the first person to realize this makes sense. Has it been voted on in the Motion Picture Industry and then vetoed? If so, why?
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