Took AJ to see Eragon yesterday. Interesting flick. It opens with an obvious voice-over, something I hate in movies because I think it shows a lack of cinematic imagination. But we are soon treated to a smoking hot redhead laciviously (maybe that was just my impression) riding a horse. She's fleeing the Bad Guys with the Prize, which we find out is an out-sized Viagra pill. She somehow transports it to the dopey farm boy, the reluctant Hero. After the Viagra are Teddy KGB (obviously here to pick up a paycheck and nothing more) and Robert Carlisle, a perennial favorite of mine who made the curious choice to channel Boy George here. Boy George as a bad ass sorcerer, but nonetheless the Karma Chameleon himself. And we're off to a battle of Good vs. Evil.
I enjoyed it actually. Moreso than AJ who realized about halfway through that he'd rather be out in the balmy desert air playing football. In fact, at the conclusion of a big fight scene, he erroneously anticipated the end and shouted, "That was a good movie! Let's go!" If I didn't want to see the end (which screamed "Sequel!") I might have hurried him out of there earlier, because Boy George was clearly influencing his behavior, as he referred to consuming his hot dog as, "eating a hot weiner."
Turns out the Viagra is actually a dragon egg and once hatched provided the biggest disappointment for me. Seeing Rachel Wiesz on the marquee had me dreaming of medieval bustiers, but she merely voiced the dragon. What a gyp.
AJ is going to X's tonight for present opening. Her family's Swedish tradition is to have food and gift exchange on Christmas Eve, so it works out fine. I haven't spent a Christmas Eve away from any family in a long time, probably about ten years. That year, I had to work the holiday and ended up in Hermosa Beach with a bunch of similarly orphaned friends. We ate paella and drank Spanish wines before playing Scattergories until the wee hours, with the added incentive of a forced tequila shot for whichever team had the worst score each round. Since the bulk of the group were journalists of some stripe, it was a high tension battle. I recall getting very drunk and falling asleep on Jorginho's couch watching "Braveheart," another movie that didn't feature Rachel Wiesz in a bustier.
In AJ's absence, I'm gonna drink beer and play poker, becuase, you know, I never do that and it's a special occasion. To everyone who's ever stopped by this space, my best wishes for a Merry Christmas to you and your families. And if you're similarly marooned from your loved ones tonight, I'll be around.