Weekly odds ‘n ends

I took my wife to see her movie of choice for Valentine’s, since we have been so busy being unseated by our lives that the last time we set foot in a movie theater was to see… Iron Man 3, I think? It’s been a while. She picked Winter’s Tale, which was better than I expected. It was a faerie tale that realized it was a faerie tale but still managed to be sincere about it rather than winking with self-satisfied self-awareness the whole way through. The good guys muddled through life unaware, while the villain knew where things were going (recognizing the nature and clichés of the genre) and tried to head them off at the pass. Hardly the most amazing film I’ve ever seen, but good enough I didn’t feel like I was suffering for the sake of the occasion.

The most amusing part of the film, besides Lucifer’s reveal (which got a laugh from the entire audience), was the fact that Jessica Brown Findlay basically just played Lady Sybil Grantham again. Pure-hearted heiress, falls in love with a lower-class guy with an Irish accent, dies midway through the story. Her first Hollywood role and already she’s typecast. On the other hand, she probably made better money from Warner Bros. for reprising her role than the BBC offered, so… nicely done, I suppose.

Speaking of Valentine’s, this week’s Daily Classics consisted entirely of games I love (with the caveat that this was their 15th/20th/25th/etc. anniversary) — the trick, of course, being how to find something new to say about them. For the most part, I think I more or less managed. Or at least I managed to find fresh ways to shuffle around the same stale opinions, anyway.

The other topic on my mind this week was Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII, a mess of a game that I really enjoyed despite its flaws — and enjoyed without irony at that. Well, no, OK. With some irony.

That last link there represents the most fun I’ve had writing anything in a while. I realize no one’s going to read it, but that was one I definitely wrote for my own benefit. If you are curious to see what naked self-indulgence looks like on a generally respectable website, well, there you go.

Finally, also worth reading, I think, is my lengthy interview with Kotaro Uchikoshi, which I conducted several months ago. I’ve been waiting for a rainy day to post it, and, as it happens, Thursday kept me housebound with freezing rain. At the same time, the Internet was soaked with a rain of bitter fan tears as Uchikoshi took to Twitter to announce the unlikeliness of our ever seeing a sequel to Virtue’s Last Reward.