Saturday, April 07, 2001


Went to Arundel Mills last night for the first time. It's this huge "outlet" mall at Rtes. 295 and 100 in Maryland. I got a good deal on a ski jacket at Sun & Ski Sports -- all their ski stuff was on end-of-season clearance. They had a treadmill-like thing that you could "ski" on, but I declined their offer of 15 minutes for $7. Somehow, it just didn't seem the same.

Then we went to Chevy's for dinner. The fact that they didn't have a table ready was annoying until we went into the bar and discovered that they had trivia. I ended up playing a pretty decent game of Spotlight, and getting to #1 on the bar's high scores at the game. Then again, after only being in for 3 questions (out of 15) of the previous game (Triviaoke), I was #9. So it's not a trivia hot spot.

By then it was almost time for the movie. We went to see it at the Muvico Egyptian 24. First of all, Muvico is a pretty silly name for a movie theater chain. It's a Florida company that builds these mega-stadium theaters. Ever since I've started going to theaters with stadium seating, I've gotten to be a bit of a snob about them and am willing to drive further to see movies there as opposed to anywhere else. Somehow I became under the mistaken impression that O, Brother Where Art Thou? was playing there. When we went to buy tickets, we were disabused of that notion. So, we got tickets for Down to Earth, a movie starring Sam Neill about the Apollo moon landings and the attempt to get an Australian satellite dish to help televise it.

At this point, you may be saying, "Jon, don't you mean The Dish? Isn't Down to Earth that lame Chris Rock remake of Heaven Can Wait?" Well, smarty-pants, you're a step ahead of me, as we discovered when the opening credits started to roll. Oops. Not wanting to subject ourselves to what we were fairly sure was going to be a not-so-thrilling movie, we slunk out.

And changed theaters to Chocolat, which was just starting. Thank goodness. All in all an enjoyable movie about a woman who opens a chocolate store in a small village in France in 1960 and upsets the town's existing social order. I guess the one thing that bothered me about the film is that it seemed to be proselytizing the transformative power of chocolate -- which is really silly, if you stop and think too long. (So don't.) The movie grasps for profoundness, but in the end is really just...sweet. Which is fine with me.

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