I have to play a bit of catch-up:
- What happens if you're this big-name director adapting this big-name prize-winning novel with the help of three big-name movie stars, and it turns out that your male and female leads, who are supposed to experience the strongest possible love at first sight -- enough to propel the entire story -- have absolutely no chemistry? Welcome to Cold Mountain. I must admit, I have yet to be bowled over by Anthony Minghella. I think Truly, Madly, Deeply might still be his best film. The Talented Mr. Ripley was above average, but I've never been a fan of The English Patient, and this movie is really just plain average or slightly above. But nothing is worse than the fact that Nicole Kidman and Jude Law are like oil and water.
- I can't believe this freakish "Sex and the City" backlash over the fact that Big's name is revealed to be "John." I have long loved Alex Richmond's recaps of the show at Television Without Pity, but she's off on this one. Personally, I found the finale to be one of the most satisfying series finales in recent memory. The choice of the name "John" for Big was in fact a perfect little wink at the audience. The writers gave us a name for the first time, but they gave us the most average, almost non-specific name possible. Would people have really been more satisfied if his name had been Chase or Austin or Brad or Ron? There's no name they could have given him that wouldn't have made people say, "Aww, that's stupid," so instead they named him while basically not naming him, and Carrie walks away from the camera into the City that she loves with her man on her phone. It's a visual antonym for the opening credits, and I think it was great.
- Please, someone tell Peggy Noonan to SHUT-UP! I'll never understand why Chris Matthews puts up with her. Her condescending tone is bad enough, but when she starts spewing nonsense about how the cultural divide in this country is between a vast majority of people with conservative values and a teeny, tiny minority of leftist liberals who make-up a media elite trying to impose its will upon the country, she must be off her anti-psychotics. Peggy, you're part of this media elite. Everyone on the major cable news channels is constantly bitching about this media elite ... who the hell is it then? Her suggestion that one can easily view this cultural divide by first standing outside a theatre showing Mel's opus and observing the awe-struck, genuinely moved faces of the exiting moviegoers and then running across the street to pick-up Time or Newsweek who have nothing but hatred for Mel and The Passion. Yeah ... I must be part of the media elite then, but if that's the case, why does Peggy have more money than I do?