Smart People – I never saw a promo for this movie in theater, but I saw a commercial for it being out on DVD. So when Smitty and I decided to rent a movie on Friday night, this was my choice. (She’d already seen Nim’s Island, and we agreed that for various reasons, What Happens in Vegas would be just too terrible to watch.)

Overall, it was good. There was some weirdness between an adult character and a child character that I could have done without. And it definitely took the slow and steady wins the race attitude. I wouldn’t quite say “plodding,” but fast-paced it was not. However, we laughed a lot during the movie, even though it focused on serious topics (a family of “smart people” trying to learn how to live again after losing their mother).

I will say that I worry a bit about Ellen Page. Her character in this movie was not much different, personality-wise, as her character in Juno. You all know how much I loved Juno, so that’s not a criticism. I just hope she doesn’t get stuck playing only one type of character. Have you all seen her in any other movies?

21 – I liked this one a lot. My husband had told me about this story a long time ago; apparently there’s a book about it and I think he saw something on ESPN. I wasn’t overly enthused about this; we were disappointed with Lucky You, another gambling movie we saw a while back, and I was afraid 21 would be similar.

I’m happy to say I was wrong. This movie was really good. It didn’t drag out the actual gambling scenes (like they did in the last James Bond movie), and it didn’t go overboard with the slick editing and plot reveals (like they do – a bit – in the Oceans 11 movies). And the thing I most appreciated – the characters didn’t behave like they belonged in trashy CW shows. Sure, the characters started enjoying the money they were making, and they made some bad choices. But they didn’t act ridiculous – instead, I think they acted just like kids their age would act if they suddenly found themselves “printing money.”

And on top of all that, there really is a good moral to the story about losing yourself and your priorities by associating with the wrong people and placing value on the wrong things.

I could say more, but I don’t want to give away anything for those of you who want to watch it. I’ll just say, in response to a question asked in the movie: yes, 21, you dazzled me.

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