Letters to Holly

Wednesday, January 23

In the News

My dad's having a health scare involving his lymph nodes. The doctors think it might be MRSA as his bloodwork doesn't suggest any tumors. His tests were supposed to come back yesterday but didn't. Hopefully, he'll find out something on Friday. He's taking medicine that doesn't affect his diet or sleep. His side of the family has multiple cancer problems, and Mom's worried about this flaring up in him. He's lost a lot of siblings (but then, he had 12), and unlike the majority of them, Dad stayed thin. Then again, Mom and Dad smoke like chimneys.

Two Three biggish news items hit yesterday.


Performance by an actor in a leading role
George Clooney in “Michael Clayton”

Daniel Day-Lewis in “There Will Be Blood”

Johnny Depp in “Sweeney Todd The Demon Barber of Fleet Street”

Tommy Lee Jones in “In the Valley of Elah”

Viggo Mortensen in “Eastern Promises”

Performance by an actor in a supporting role
Casey Affleck in “The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford”

Javier Bardem in “No Country for Old Men”

Philip Seymour Hoffman in “Charlie Wilson’s War”

Hal Holbrook in “Into the Wild”

Tom Wilkinson in “Michael Clayton”

Performance by an actress in a leading role
Cate Blanchett in “Elizabeth: The Golden Age”

Julie Christie in “Away from Her”

Marion Cotillard in “La Vie en Rose”

Laura Linney in “The Savages”

Ellen Page in “Juno” (Fox Searchlight)

Performance by an actress in a supporting role
Cate Blanchett in “I’m Not There”

Ruby Dee in “American Gangster”

Saoirse Ronan in “Atonement”

Amy Ryan in “Gone Baby Gone”

Tilda Swinton in “Michael Clayton”

Best animated feature film of the year


“Surf's Up”

Best documentary feature
“No End in Sight”

“Operation Homecoming: Writing the Wartime Experience”


“Taxi to the Dark Side”


Best foreign language film of the year
“Beaufort” Israel

“The Counterfeiters” Austria

“KatyƄ” Poland

“Mongol” Kazakhstan

“12” Russia

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original song)
“Falling Slowly” from “Once”

“Happy Working Song” from “Enchanted”

“Raise It Up” from “August Rush”

“So Close” from “Enchanted”

“That’s How You Know” from “Enchanted”

Best motion picture of the year


“Michael Clayton”

“No Country for Old Men”

“There Will Be Blood”

Achievement in visual effects

“The Golden Compass”

“Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End”


Adapted screenplay

“Away from Her”

“The Diving Bell and the Butterfly”

“No Country for Old Men”

“There Will Be Blood”

Original screenplay

“Lars and the Real Girl”

“Michael Clayton”


“The Savages”

I haven't seen a lot of this, although I adored Ratatouille. No Country For Old Men is playing in town, but I don't think I'll get to see it before it's ultimately replaced by Alvin and the Chipmunks. I'm glad to see Blanchett nominated, and I think this is the second straight year she's been nominated in the lead and supporting categories.

Shocking only for the fanfare that precluded his campaign. He was the GOP savior, the star coming off the bench to win one for the team, the new Reagan, the rare celebrity Republican who could turn his fame into political success. But he entered so late into the race that he never got his sea legs, and his alleged fame didn't play with the young crowd. Also, his heart wasn't in it. I mean, look at the guy. What in his bearing suggests he's gonna wear a dumb smile and wave to the crowds? He's a cranky old man. That kind of figure can't win an election. This is why Cheney didn't run for the top spot. I enjoy the debate about who he will support now as if he has any clout he can bestow onto another candidate. Thompson ran because the other guys supposedly couldn't win; why would he back one of them?

I only saw the guy in Brokeback Mountain, but I marveled at his created voice and mannerisms. He deserved an Oscar. Of course, we geeks are shaken because he's the new Joker in this summer's Batman film.

Picture of the Day
For just
£100,000, you too can reserve your seat aboard Virgin's space plane.

From ThisIsLondon.co.uk:

The Virgin Galactic spacecraft, which was being unveiled in New York today, is already under construction. Test flights are expected to begin in June, with commercial flights starting 12 months later.

More than 200 potential astronauts are believed to have already paid deposits for the 100,000 flights, including actress Victoria Principal, scientist Stephen Hawking, and Princess Beatrice.

Flights will last for two hours and will include four and a half minutes of weightlessness.

The 60-ft ship is expected to reach an altitude of 110km - 68 miles - and will be launched from underneath a mother ship called White Knight.

Once the mother ship reaches 50,000 feet, which was the cruising altitude of Concorde, the spaceship is released and its rocket is fired, accelerating the craft up to 2,500mph, and taking it to 110km, officially making its passengers astronauts.

There's no way I'm going up on the first flight.

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