I FINALLY SAW THE LIFE AQUATIC......Wes Anderson's new film, and, to be honest, I don't know what I think. I read all the spoilers, but it still seemed a little weirder than I expected, even if it had more comedic moments than The Royal Tenenbaums. It's another slightly alternate world, with real countries, at least the large ones, but imaginary cities and islands, and there's something just slightly off-kilter about the whole film that's tough to put my finger on. I will definitely have to see it at least one more time before I feel I can have a proper opinion as to whether or not it lives up to Wes's past films, though I know that I won't break my record of seeing The Royal Tenenbaums eight times in the theatre, since I simply do not have the same kind of money to spend on movie tickets that I had three years ago and there are other films out that I want to see that I still haven't seen yet.
This was also my first time at the Cineplex Odeon theatre in the World Exchange Plaza, which seemed slightly better than any of the old Cineplex theatres in Montreal, the bulk of which closed when the Famous Players Paramount and AMC Forum 22 megaplexes opened. The screen wasn't quite as big as the ones at the Paramount, though I paid $9.95 for a ticket, which is about 45 cents more than at the Paramount, last time I checked.
When I was downtown, I also went to both HMV stores in central Ottawa: the one on Sparks Street and the one in the Rideau Centre. Meh... both of them seem smaller than the HMV in Fairview Pointe-Claire even, and they don't remotely compare to the HMV megastore at the corner of Sainte Catherine's and Peel, especially for anime. Damn, I miss that store. And Metro Video too. But I've found one certain kind of store that's a mile better than any comparable store in Montreal, but I'll save the boring description for one of the other boring shopping articles that I've been meaning to write for a couple of weeks but just lacked the energy to do it, since I'm still feeling discombobulated after the move.
Another stop downtown was Chapters, which does have a decent (for Ontario) selection of French-translated Japanese manga comics, and I prayed to God, or maybe Belldandy, very hard, and, sure enough, one single copy of volume 6 of the French translation of Mihona Fujii's Gals! manga was in, which was exactly what I wanted. I got it and then walked over to the English-translated manga section, and it was about 80% Tokyopop titles, but they did have the first volume of one of their titles that I have been looking for, Maki Murakami's Gravitation, which is a yaoi comic about a gay relationship, though written for a female audience. The perfect thing to make my mother wonder about me some more should she come across it (though, ironically, I seem to be pretty much exclusively heterosexual again, at least compared to how I felt last year; I just want to pick it up because it seems funny, from the small samples of it I've seen in places). I didn't pick it up, since I really, really wanted Gals! and I didn't have that much money, but it's on my short list of manga to get in the immediate future. I may still cross the river into Hull/Gatineau to go to Renaud-Bray at some point soon, since I also want the third volume of Planetes, and I didn't see that one in Chapters in either official language.
Between going to Chapters and seeing the movie, I had an hour and a half to kill, so I walked around the Byward Market area and then I walked up Sussex Drive, past the American Embassy and the National Gallery and the Royal Canadian Mint, almost as far as the Macdonald-Cartier Bridge, and I had half-a-mind to cross over the bridge and just put my foot in Quebec for a second, since I am feeling a bit homesick. But I didn't want to miss the movie.
I was a little disappointed to see no Marines guarding either side of the American Embassy. I'm sure the security there is impeccable, but absolutely no one was visible anywhere.
After the film, I had to wait something like 45 fricking minutes for a bus, since the 86 bus only operates once an hour at that point on Sunday evenings, and it was damn cold. And it's also very difficult to turn the pages of the Gals! manga I bought when I was wearing gloves, but it was just too cold to take them off every minute to turn the page.
I was in a very Wendy's mood, so I had dinner there, except not downtown, since there aren't any fricking Wendy's anywhere downtown! I had to eat at this one on Merivale, which is less than a mile from my new house. Kind of defeats the purpose of eating out, but, damnit, Dave Thomas's crew makes a damn fine Spicy Chicken burger and I haven't had a Wendy's Spicy Chicken burger since moving from Montreal. Walking back home after was a bitch, though, since it had gotten even more bitterly cold, so I had to warm up with a cup of tea and a hot water bottle.
Speaking of burger places on Merivale, I figured out something I find amusing about my local McDonald's: it's on Merivale, and, about a kilometre further north on Merivale, there is CJOH studios. So? Well, what semi-popular children's programme, shown on CTV and YTV and Nickelodeon in the 1980s, was shot at CJOH studios? You Can't Do That On Television, that's what. And the Barth's Burgery sketches often made fun of McDonald's. So, since my local McDonald's is the closest one to the Barth's Burgery set, you can almost say it's the inspiration for Barth's Burgery, and I think I'll whisper "What do you think's in the burgers?" next time I'm eating there. ("Duh, I heard that!") Though, from the look of the McDonald's, it may have been built since You Can't Do That on Television went out of production in 1990, so it's not actually fair to think of it that way. Just a little something that makes me chuckle because I think about things way too much.