Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Upcoming Movies I am Looking Forward to Seeing

Cloudy with a chance of meatballs - opens September 18, 2009
Animated movie based on a children's book. It employs a new animation technique that allows a camera to move though a virtual animated environment.

District 9 - now playing
We actually saw this last week. It is a Peter Jackson movie. I enjoyed it. It is a Sci-fi alternative history that explores the idea of an alien spacecraft being marooned on Earth in South Africa.

Extract - opens December 3, 2009
(Writer and Director: Mike Judge) New movie from the creator of Office Space.
Jason Bateman, Mila Kunis, Ben Affleck.

9 - opens September 9, 2009 (9-9-09)
Post-apocalyptic animated film. Runtime 79 minutes.

Pandorum - opens September 25, 2009
From IMDB's description: "A pair of crew members aboard a spaceship wake up with no knowledge of their mission or their identities."
Check out the trailer.

Surrogates - opens September 25, 2009
Murder investigation set in a future society where people do not leave their homes, but interact with each other via robots they control. Stars Bruce Willis

The Invention of Lying - opens September 25, 2009
Movie set in a world where no one ever lies. Ricky Gervais, Directs and stars, with Jason Bateman, Jennifer Garner, Jonah Hill, Tina Fey, Patrick Stewart, Rob Lowe, Jeffrey Tambor, Christopher Guest.

Shutter Island - opens February 19, 2010 (was October 2, 2009)
Directed by Martin Scorsese, stars Leo DiCaprio, Mark Ruffalo, and Ben Kingsley. Set in the 1950's, on an Island that is home to a facility for the criminally insane, a U.S. Marshal investigates the disappearance of one of the patients.

Couples Retreat - opens October 9, 2009
Comedy written by Jon Favreau and Vince Vaughn in which four couples go away on a couples retreat at a tropical island.

Where the Wild Things Are - opens October 16, 2009
A live-action film based on the children's book by Maurice Sendack.

Amelia - opens October 23, 2009
Amelia Earhart movie starring Hilary Swank, Rhichard Gere, Ewan McGregor

A Christmas Carol - opens November 6, 2009
Robert Zemeckis animated retelling of the classic story. Voiced by Jim Carrey, Gary Oldman, Colin Firth. Trailer looks amazing.

The Boat that Rocked (aka Pirate Radio) - opens November 13, 2009
Stars Philip Seymour Hoffman, Bill Nighy.

The Box - opens November 6, 2009
Stars Cameron Diaz, James Marsden, Frank Langella.

2012 - opens November 13, 2009
John Cusack, Woody Harrelson, Amanda Peet, Danny Glover. End-of-the-world movie based around the Mayan Calendar.

The Fantastic Mr. Fox - opens November 13, 2009
Stop-action film voiced by George Clooney, Meryl Streep and Bill Murray.

Armored - opens December 4, 2009
Stars Matt Dillon, Laurence Fishburne.

The Princess and the Frog - opens December 11, 2009
Disney, hand-drawn animation set in New Orleans.

Invicitus - opens December 11, 2009
Nelson Mandela biopic directed by Clint Eastwood and starring Morgan Freeman.

Sherlock Holmes - opens December 25, 2009
Guy Ritchie directs, starring Robert Downey Jr and Jude Law.

Note: the hyperlinks in this text are links to another website-Internet Movie Database. Release dates are for USA.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Sugar Detox

Yes, I have gone off sugar. Well, for the most part I have. I still have some sugar (the occasional ice cream, etc.) But I no longer sup on it like mother's proverbial milk. And going off sugar was so much harder than I thought it would be.

First, some background: I started having severe joint pain in May of this year. I just this past Thursday got in to see the rheumatologist, but I digress. A friend of mine suggested that lowering my sugar intake might lessen my pain. She said it worked for a friend of hers. So, I thought to myself: I'll just try it for a day or two to prove that it doesn't work. Then I can forget about this nonsense. I should tell you right now, I am a sugar-aholic (if there is such a thing!) I love candy, cookies, ice cream, sweet tea. There's not a sugary confection I don't love. And I regularly was buying candy of all different sorts to enjoy. My two favorite holidays are Halloween and Easter-because they involve candy! Even special candy not available at other times of the year!

Besides eating candy every day, I was putting 3 sugars in my morning coffee (I had worked myself down from 5 packets, so I was pretty proud of that) and drinking 12 to 24 ounces of sweetened iced tea per day. I would ocassionally treat myself to sweet tea from McDonald's.

So, getting back to what I was saying, I started avoiding sugar that first day. I was expecting no changes. I was so wrong. The first day-The First Day-of no added sugar I noticed a difference. My pain decreased by about 70 percent! I was so happy, and so sad. I loved not having the pain, but I didn't want to go without my beloved candies and sweetened drinks.

The second day of no added sugar was pure torture. I was angry. Every time I saw something with sugar in it I got mad. I wanted to buy candy so badly. I felt so out of control. It felt like the candy was sitting on the shelves at the store mocking me, broadcasting their desire to be in my belly-home sweet home. Yes, I felt like I was going crazy. For the next couple days this went on. I was shaky and angry and even angrier at myself that it effected me this way. One of those days I snuck in a big piece of cake. It tasted good, but it also tasted weird. The sugar tasted different. It tasted too sweet. A few hours later I paid the price with increased pain. That was enough to deter me from doing that again.

So, now I have been off sugar for over a month, and I feel better. I am still having joint pain, but not nearly as much as I was before I went off sugar. In the past two to three weeks I have also lost weight (about 6 pounds). That's amazing in itself because I have not been able to loose weight for the past 4 or 5 years, since I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism. I never thought that all this trouble could come from sugar. I had heard people talk about it, of course, but I thought it was some new age-y, natural-eating propaganda. Plus, I didn't want to believe it. I thought I couldn't live without my sugar. I guess I was wrong.