Smile Through It II: The Next Chapter

Chasing dreams, because I can

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Posted by Oli on Friday 2nd January, 2009

We rouse ourselves from slumber around half-10 and wake ourselves up, throw on some clothes and head out to the flicks to catch Inkheart, which is now in its last week in cinemas, if the frequency of timings are anything to go by (which is usually is).

It’s a great little film, I guessing far-underrated from it’s lack of fanfare, but if I’d seen it earlier I’d be encouraging everyone I could to go see it. Technically it’s a kids film, but is much more entertaining than any of the Harry Potters and has a cast to rival the series, too, with Brendan Fraser taking the lead in a not-rubbish kids film for once, joined and backed up by an unbelievable array of top talent including Helen Mirren, Jim Broadbent, Paul Bettany and the always-immaculately brilliant Andy Serkis, who deserves to be much more well-known than is.

The tale is a classic modern fairytale of “Silvertongues” – people who, when they read words from books aloud make the characters and images from the page come to life in the real world.

It’s proper fairytale stuff, too, all adventure and danger, scares and baddies you could almost boo at, but all pulled off with a deft touch which steers the cast away from the usual, over-the-top ham into more natural but enjoyable performances.

It’s also pitched perfectly for all audiences – there’s mystery and suspense for the girls, monsters and adventure for the boys and there’s enough of everything in there, artfully pulled off, to keep any adults in it with their kids or even – as in our case – on their own. It’s a true Christmas cracker and I wish I’d seen it earlier so that a) I could see it again and b) tell everyone to go and see it.

When we get out of the flick, I take K over to my ‘rents to peep out the photo collections still strewn on the table and we go through various packets of photos, me filling K in on all the cute little-me stories as well as the really-grumpy me stories and pics.

Mum and Dad get home from golf and tell me I have boxes upstairs from the loft to go through, so K and I hit the upstairs study-cum-storeroom and settle into box-exploring, which doesn’t take very long as we rapidly discover that all my boxes have obviously been gone-through when I moved out and I’d cleared the house of all my rubbish, chuck the keepers up in the loft in the very boxes that have just been retrieved. We move a bit of stuff between boxes and empty one that’s falling apart before calling it a day and heading home.

We get back and for the first time since Christmas Eve I jump on my computer and check up email. Disappointingly, there’s nothing remotely interesting there at all, so I’m through it very quickly.

I head into the kitchen and wash up some mugs as well as rinsing our steamer through so I can use it. I get on with cooking a proper, home-cooked meal for the first time in a good couple of weeks, prepping some roasties and chicken, then chopping veg up. I cook it all up and serve to a tired but appreciative K.

I wash up and we settle onto the sofa to watch The Wizard of Oz, a film I’ve only ever seen bits and pieces of. I’m carrying another wapping headache, though and after less than an hour I can’t deal with it any more and have to call it quits.

We hit the sack and I fall asleep in a hurry, but forget as I do so that falling asleep before 10pm means I always wake up around 11-12 and can’t sleep again, which is exactly what I do.

I get up and chuck some random late-night TV on while I sit and update my blog from Christmas most of the night, then throw on Rocky Balboa when I’m done, watching through the extras before putting the feature on.


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