Movie Night!

9:36 AM

The Beloved is a gamer. And not in any casual sense of the word. For the past few months, it has seemed to me that he has lived, breathed, eaten and slept World of Warcraft--the online gaming sensation commonly known as WoW. Any South Park fans who saw the WoW episode--it's only funny 'cause it's true. Which, actually, makes it not so funny.

Things got particularly bad this winter. The Beloved joined a guild in November while I was finishing graduate school because he needed something to do since I was gone all the time. He has since managed to lose more and more time in front of the bloody computer in pursuit of uber-lootage. In February, I joined an online community of almost 3000 "WoW Widows." Yes, I realize exactly how sad this sounds--and what's worse is that The Beloved's obsessive playing was mild in comparison to the actions of other member's significant others.

So, what does this have to do with movies? After a 12-hour stint in front of the computer on Sunday which left me extraordinarily non-plussed, The Beloved has decided to quit his guild, or at least to go on an indefinite leave of absence. I'm not sure which he eventually chose. Anyhow, we've actually spent quality time together these past evenings after work. I can't tell you how great it is. On Wednesday nights I work a second job which keeps me out until 8 or 8:30, and I was dreading finding him in the computer room having fallen off the wagon. When I got home from work, he was in the computer room. WoW was on. As soon as I walked in to say "hi," he asked if I wanted to watch a movie and turned off the game. Just like that. Now, if you've ever lived with a compulsive gamer, you know these things just don't happen. If you've never known a compulsive gamer, you've just got to trust me on this one and believe me when I say it's almost the equivalent of "here, honey, let me open a bottle of Moet and get you some strawberries and then you look like you could use a nice foot massage."

So we watched Curse of the Golden Flower. It was absolutely stunning. I know nothing about this film other than that it's Chinese, so it was hard to knit and watch at the same time since I had to read subtitles. There were scenes set in the Forbidden City--but I don't know if they shot on location or if it was a set. No matter--gorgeous. Absolutely gorgeous. Very violent at the end--so there was something for The Beloved, who, while able to appreciate stunning costumes and amazing settings, is still a man who digs battle scenes.

The film was directed by Zhang Yimou, who brought us Hero and House of Flying Daggers. I think it was recommended to us by my mother-in-law. While glorious to watch and wonderfully directed, the story was a bit of a jumble. Shakespearean scholars may recognize elements from their favorite tragedies--in fact, at one point The Beloved commented that it was starting to look like King Lear. Still--particularly if you have a big TV--I found it worth the 114 minutes. Particularly since it made for a lovely date with my husband.

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