I have not been sitting idly by since I turned 40 last month. Oh, no, no, no. Far from it! I have struck numbers 1, 10, and 25 from the list. I have also been plugging away at numbers 4 and 5, which are, respectively, completing the Top 100 AFI movies list and completing the BBC’s 100 Big Read List. Under normal circumstances, completing those two items would have made a stellar enrichment to-do list, but no, I had to incorporate them into a list of 40 things to accomplish, and frankly, I think finishing the BBC’s 100 Big Read is going to be my biggest challenge due to the time it requires.
In the past two weeks, I have watched the following movies from the Top 100 AFI List:
And in the past week or so, I have completed the following book from the BBC’s 100 Big Read:
I decided to start off by tackling the AFI list from the bottom to the top and the BBC list from the top to the bottom. I know now I’m going to have to mix things up to keep from going batty. I enjoyed Yankee Doodle Dandy. I thought I’d like M*A*S*H, because I loved the TV show, but I didn’t. Parts of Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner were still startlingly applicable 47 years after it was released and gave me pause. But on the book side, Pride and Prejudice just about did me in. I have never been an Austen fan, and despite never having read the book or seen any of the many, many versions of the movie, I knew the story before I started. I think that made it a little bit harder to read, because the scenes that took pages and pages of embroidered language to unfold bored me to tears when in today’s language they could have easily been summed up in a paragraph, maybe two. Sorry, Austen lovers, it’s not my cup of tea. Making it through Persuasion and Emma will probably be equally as painful, but the ones I’m really dreading are the Russian titles: War and Peace and Crime and Punishment. I may be branching out from the world of print and going the audio book route with those two. It feels a bit like cheating, but since it’s my game and my rules, I say audio books count.
Since Pride and Prejudice was such a snooze fest (Austen fans, go ahead and send your hate mail and lob virtual rotten fruit at me), I decided to tackle some of the Roald Dahl titles on the list next. Up next: Matilda.