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Saturday, May 20, 2017

The Writer's Life 5/20 - That's a Wrap

When Morgan (2016) arrived from Netflix it was another case of Huh? I did not recall why I'd added the obscure flick to my list. I'm glad I did. It's a tight sci-fi thriller with interesting characters portrayed by a stellar cast. Although it opts for a standard story line, it is well worthwhile. Young Anya Taylor-Joy stars as the title character, created in a test tube, loved by the staff of the isolated institute where she resides. She begins to behave aggressively, and a woman from the corporate division is sent to investigate. The situation, of course, escalates. The question of elimination arises. Had the creators stayed with the moral dilemma rather than opting for carnage, it might have been more interesting, but who can say for sure? There is sympathy for Morgan until she loses it completely, which makes moot any argument about her fate. I guessed the twist about a third of the way through, but not that the story would not adhere to the traditional cautionary tale of man playing God, becoming instead one of cold calculation. Kate Mara plays the investigator. Paul Giamatti steals the show in a brief stint as a psych evaluator in the narrative's most riveting scene. Jennifer Jason Leigh plays the first attack victim, Michelle Yeoh the project head, Rose Leslie the "best friend." Brian Cox appears briefly at the end as an executive. Although the film's budget was "only" eight million, it looks as good as any blockbuster. It did poorly at the box office, returning less than four million. 21,000+ users at IMDb have rated it, forging to a consensus of 5.8 of ten, which is way too low. It deserved a better fate. Anyone squeamish about violence should pass. Another plus, it runs only 92 minutes. Luke Scott directed, his first stint at the helm of a full length feature. Seth Owen wrote the screenplay, only his second for the movies. I'm interested to see what they do next.

Emily Seilhamer, an artist, recycles items by creating new things out of them. She met her husband, Malachi, when he offered her a pack of Starburst, his favorite candy. He kept giving her the candies. She recently made a dress out of ten thousand of the wrappers. Here's a pic:

It was one of those days when negativism had to be fought. As I was walking away from the building this morning, I realized I'd left my lunch in the fridge. I went back and got it. While driving away I realized I hadn't brought extra money for gas (expletive deleted). When I got to within two blocks of Ocean Parkway, I saw that the annual mini-marathon was underway, blocking passage. I turned around and headed to the entrance to the Belt Parkway near my home, ignoring the longer queues to the ramps along the way. After the laundry was done and I left the old house, it began raining. I remained seated in the old Hyundai until it stopped, about 20 minutes. I listened to the forecast on the radio, which said partly sunny in the afternoon. I parked in front of the bank and waited until it stopped sprinkling. I gambled that that was the last of the precipitation, set up shop, and had to cover the wares within ten minutes. Fortunately, a young woman bought a couple of books and Jack of Chase purchased a thriller, which covered the three bucks I planned to spend on the meter. Then Danny and Bad News Billy showed up back to back. The former bought $20 worth of books and self help CD's, the latter the last of the 20 or so classical CD's I had, plus a VHS tape of Rose-Marie (1936), starring Jeanette McDonald and Nelson Eddy. Billy has been ordered to lose 50 pounds by his doctor. My thanks, gentleman, and also to the one who bought the 35th anniversary edition of Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged. Now there is only one box full of books on the back seat.
Vic's Sixth novel: 
Vic's Short Works:

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