Month: February 2013

Lincoln – Movie Review

Lincoln

Abraham Lincoln enters the vastly dark room, save for the bright moon rays shining through the window. On the floor, Tad is sleeping next to his drawings of a battlefield and his toy soldiers. Lincoln sweeps the soldiers off the drawing, lies down next to him and motions him to get on a piggy back ride in order to be carried to bed. Tad obliges, stating, “I want to see Willie.” Lincoln wistfully replies, “You can’t, son. Willie’s gone. It’s been three years now” and carries him to the bedroom.  Tad’s pain is palpable, and Lincoln’s nostalgia and poignant response to his son’s innocent request render us, the audience, a part of the intimate and moving scene and immediately thrusts us into the storyline.  We sense Lincoln’s pain, Tad’s innocence, and we are left wondering not only what is ahead for these two, but where Tad’s mother fits into this situation and why she isn’t the one tucking her son into bed.  Through the rest of the movie, we realize Mary Todd Lincoln’s emotional withdrawal from her marriage and from her younger son, Tad, and her battle with depression since her son, Willie’s, sudden death.  Indeed, Sally Field’s portrayal of Lincoln’s wife is authentic, powerful and extraordinarily believable.  She allows us an unprecedented peer into her ailing marriage, her wavering support for her husband’s radical push for the Thirteenth Amendment, her mental illness, her strength and intelligence, her assertiveness and her internal struggles juxtaposed with the pressures of being married to the most powerful man in America at the time.  Mary views her husband’s passion and stubbornness when it comes to abolishing slavery and enfranchising the “Negroes” as folly and useless. She goes so far as to attempt to persuade him to give up what is in her view a pointless crusade. “No one’s loved as much as you by the people. Don’t waste that power on an amendment that’s sure of defeat”, she implores. Lincoln, of course, persists in his resolve and will not be dissuaded from following what he believes to be the moral and just amendment to enact.

Lincoln on Horse

So stalwart is Lincoln’s determination that he will stop at nothing, including strong-arm tactics, bribery and threats, to obtain the necessary votes for the passage of the amendment.  Daniel Day-Lewis’ portrayal of Lincoln is brilliant method acting at its finest.  The actor has very obviously researched our sixteenth president in depth and has managed to capture every facet of his personality and physical traits, including his vocal pitch, his mannerisms, his distinctive walk, his sense of humor and his overall grandeur and stateliness.  Lincoln boldly goes where “no man has gone before”, relentlessly pursuing liberty and justice for all, especially for those of color. His marriage suffers at some point because of this, and his relationship with his oldest son, Robbie, is strained due to the duo’s diverging views on Robbie’s future.  Yet, despite all these weighty matters that Abe is dealing with, he somehow finds the time for pause and humor. In the midst of an attack on the Union, he tells the story of Ethan Allen, an American Revolution hero who went to Britain and the British, still upset about losing the war, decided to poke fun at Americans by posting a large picture of George Washington just above the privy.  Ethan Allen used the privy a few times, but said nothing. Finally, a Brit couldn’t stand the suspense any longer and asked Allen about his reaction to said picture.  Allen, without missing a beat, simply replied by stating, “there is nothing to make an Englishman shit faster than the sight of General George Washington.” This brilliant story telling ability is one of the cornerstone traits Lincoln is known for, and the actor’s comedic timing on this story is impeccable. Daniel Day Lewis truly shines in this stellar Oscar-worthy performance. The picture is also unique, historically authentic, suspenseful (regardless of the fact that we all know how it ends) and truly worth viewing. It receives my highest recommendations.

PS: If you’re into award shows, be sure to watch the Oscars this Sunday, February 24th at 7pm EST on ABC. Lincoln has secured 12 Oscar nominations, including best picture.  🙂

*Images Credit : http://oscar.go.com/nominees/best-picture/lincoln

The Dream

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I dream of you tonight
And as I lay my head to rest
I feel your strong arms
Around me pulling me in a warm embrace
Our noses touch
Your breath becomes my breath
Our lips touch—
Electrifying! Passionate, yet sweet and soft
Your gaze meets mine
In the splendor of a blue azure sea
You whisper in my ear,
“Goodnight, love”,
My face beams with happiness
And as I doze off
I hear faintly, “Te iubesc…”
My life is complete,
As only everything I was searching for
Is right here, next to me, holding me tightly
Love? – Too weak a word
Passion? Yes, but so much more
The life I didn’t know existed and had given up on
Is finally here laying next to me
Within reach
All I have to do is grab it and never let go
My love, my life, my all–
You are my dream.

Copyright © 2009 A.C.S.

You

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With every step, every breath, every memory I feel you
My heart, my soul, my mind long for you
You are permanently locked in everything I do and everything I am
So let’s love like it’s ours to keep
And remember the love we both need.

Copyright © 2009 A.C.S.

French Poem – Onze Septembre

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Onze Septembre, notre planète s’arrête
Le soleil pleut, les rivières courent rouge foncé
Seulement pendant ce matin tout est silent
au capitale du Monde
La vérité mélange avec le surréel
Rien n’est plus sûr.
Rien n’est plus.

Pendant ces moments affreux,
Notre cœurs se sont ouverts
Aux homes et femmes innocents
Et notre héros courageux
Qui sont morts pour leur compatriotes.

Avec cœurs endourcis et bon courage
Les États Unis luttent, se revoltent et se vengent
Contre ces animaux froids
Qui ont attaqué nos valeurs, notre fierté et l’essence de cette belle patrie.

Vous avez gagnez cette bataille, putins misérables!
Mais, jamais triompherez-vous dans cette guerre
Périssez, imbéciles!
Adieu pour toujours.

Copyright © 2001 A.C.S.

Photo Credit: Microsoft Word Clipart Image

French Poem – Le Silence

I apologize in advance to all non-French-speaking readers. I wrote these next 2 poems in French in 2001, and, although I thought about translating them into English, they didn’t seem to have quite the same impact as I had intended. Therefore, I will post these as they were originally written, quickly followed by continuing to post my English language poems.  Please check back later tonight for another poem in English.

Perhaps noteworthy is the fact that French is my fourth language (following Romanian, German, and English). I received my Bachelor’s degree in French and consequently my thinking tended to appropriately drift into French at times.

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Le Silence

Le silence vient par la nuit
Echappant toutes les orifices
Explosant comme un feu d’artifice
Pour le sourd—on l’englouti—l’ennui

Rien ne bouge, immobile
Corps d’une traihison secrète
Tout s’agite, effervesce—une tempête
Cachée, enterrée, inutile.

Dans la démi-lumière on aperçoit
Le mélange des esprits informes
Ils tournent, detournent, s’enforçant parfois
Dans le coeur, la chair—une invasion enorme.

Le train s’approche urgent et gallopant
Les freines grincent et crient
Tout est tranquille, hésitant
Ecreusant les oreilles, le silence toujours ici.

Copyright © 2001 A.C.S.

Memories

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Unfortunately life consists of
Nothing but memories
Memories that plague, plunder
and victoriously cripple.
Suspending past
immaculate in the present.
And without a doubt their powerful aura
Blinds, excruciatingly shining
A bright ball in an
otherwise darkened senseless sky.

Thus life goes on
Past is but a shadow of memories faded
Extinguished so-called eternal flame
Embers turned to coal.

Copyright © 2001 A.C.S.

Forever

Sun Peering Through Back Yard

Love travels with the wind
You get a whiff, a touch of it—
It’s intoxicating
You want more and more
And the wind brings you full
Intoxication
Inebriated with this magical
Forbidden air
And when you are so
Saturated with
this unspoken forbidden fruit—
It leaves
Gone into the unknown realm.

The wind stops
No creature stirs
Stillness enveloping the air
And silence reigns supremely.
Twilight zone
Came and left
Without a trace
Where are you now, love?
Or whatever you professed to be?
You’ve got me so hooked on you
Intoxicated without hope
And then poof!—no more
Withdrawal symptoms
In the stillness of the night
No tears can erase the memory
And the feeling that won’t go away.
Goodbye seems wasted and useless
For there is no saying farewell
To this powerful gripping feeling
That forever remains
Lingering like the smell of roses in a rose garden

Darkness, tears, friends, the giant ball of light
Nothing can make this feeling escape.
Forever engrained.
Forever intoxicated.
Forever.

Copyright © 2001 A.C.S.