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Bear with me: Stitches @TheHopeTheatre

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What if your teddy bear could talk? My ten-year-old self would think that to be excellent. My more recent self would think it was a high-concept buddy movie with Mark Wahlberg. But in Stictches, Jonathan Blakeley's monologue, which he has written and performed, traces the life of his beloved Chloe, from when she was first given to him by her grandmother, wrapped with a red ribbon. It becomes a story not just about a cute bear (or maybe that should be rough, shaggy-looking bear given the performer’s appearance) observing life but an exploration of life and all of its stages. It's currently playing at the Hope Theatre .  The bear is not warm and fuzzy; he is a bit of a character and tough-talking, but also a bit anxious about being accepted and then discarded as nothing. But he is there to bear witness as she navigates the complicated facets of growing up and having a life. Ultimately, the bear has to deal with being consigned to a box with her other memories until circumstances

Film: The Good German


The Good German poster, originally uploaded by Daryl Van Horne.

At one point during The Good German I turned to Ad and said to him, "Forget it Jake it's Potsdam". There was a hint of Chinatown about this movie. The only difference was it wasn't as well acted, directed or with an intelligible story.

But there was plenty of confusion as Clooney plays a character called Jake who spends most of the film chasing Lena (Cate Blanchett) all over the American and Russian sectors of 1945 Berlin. Why he pursues a woman with such a badly fitting wig is anyone's guess. She spends most of the movie pouting and talking in slow, low and deliberate voice. Her line "Yuu shud naht huv cum bahk to Berlin" evoked memories of Meryl Streep as Karen Blixen in Out of Africa "Yuu have mede me barrhen"...

Tobey Maguire also has a role. He gets to say very non film noir words such as "fuck" and "cunt" in an unusually high pitched voice. Fortunately he gets "done in" early on and we are left wondering who did it for all of five minutes... Well war is hell... So is the peace it seems too...

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