I went to see my little sister in a production of Lend Me a Tenor this week. I may be a wee bit prejudiced, but she was definitely one of the strongest performers in the cast! She played the role of Maria, and she had the accent down cold! All in all, it was a fun production, although the set looked as if it had seen better days. My Dad was laughing so hard that he almost had a heart attack. That's when it hit me - I should have been performing in farces all of these years! Maybe there's hope for me yet. New Stage is producing Noises Off next season, after all.
I also finally saw two movies that I'd been meaning to watch - Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Sideways. I was very lucky; they were both great. I thought Jim Carrey did a fabulous job in Sunshine; I don't think I've seen him turn in such a layered performance in anything else he's ever done. It's just such a neat concept - the thought that you could erase people, places, things, from your memory. But if you erase things that bring you pain, you also erase some of the joy out of your life. And you erase part of who you are. If you erase your mistakes, you don't learn from them. And you don't grow stronger because of them.
Let me add my voice to the chorus of people who were surprised when Paul Giamatti was not nominated for an Academy Award last year. He did a great job in Sideways. What I liked best about Miles was that he was a contradictory character, like so many of us are. He did bad things, like steal money from his mother and lie to his best friend, but he was also capable of great loyalty, self-examination, and devotion. (On the flip side, I felt that his best friend was a total ass.) I also liked the way that, although the story didn't end with everything tied up in a nice bow, you definitely felt that Miles was going to be all right, that he was going to make it just fine. Sometimes all people need is one person who really gives a damn about them.