news item #1
The Los Angeles Film Critics Association has voted "Wall-E" as the best film of the year, with "The Dark Knight" coming in second. Since I love both movies, I'm thrilled! I do plan to see "Milk", but since I expect it to be in limited release for the rest of the month, I don't think I'll have a chance to see it until the new year unless I decide to trek to the Arclight in Hollywood.
There's talk that both "Wall-E" and "The Dark Knight" even have a shot at Best Picture come Academy Award nomination time. Either nomination would come as a surprise, since with the inception of Best Animated Film, it's been conventional wisdom that an animated film would never again be nominated for Best Picture (like "Beauty and the Beast" was). And in the case of "The Dark Knight", a nomination for the late Heath Ledger is probably expected, and the film could even be in contention in the screenplay and directing categories in addition to the expected tech categories, but a blockbuster movie like that, based on a comic book property no less, is not the usual kind of film that the Academy nominates for Best Picture. It will be interesting to see what transpires on the morning of January 22, 2009. This will probably be one of those years where I'm interested enough to be up early in the morning to hear the announcements live.
news item #2
I saw this blurb about a church in Texas that received a $1.5 million donation. I know nothing about this church, but I think it's great that someone saw the need and was generous enough to fulfill it. And remained anonymous through it all. Maybe the anonymous benefactor wanted to remain such so other people wouldn't come asking for money as well, but in staying anonymous, he/she also doesn't get any public credit. But I'm sure all the members of the church are immensely grateful.
news item #3
I have some friends who sing the praises of Crackel Barrel (I'm still trying to come up with an excuse to go somewhere that would have a Cracker Barrel nearby so I can try it), so this story that peripherally involved a Cracker Barrel restaurant caught my attention. Good for the woman and her husband for returning the money. It was foolish of the elderly woman to be carrying around that kind of money in cash, since it was probably her life savings, and I can't imagine how devastating it would have been to have lost that money, so I hope she takes better care of it. (There's a part of me that's kind of suspicious, but I'm giving her the benefit of the doubt that her having that kind of cash lying around is all above board.) It was also nice of the woman and her husband to decline the reward money - I hope their good deed comes back to them tenfold.