The first edition of Complete Idiot's Guide to Bridge
by H. Anthony Medley was the fastest
selling beginning bridge book, going through more than 10 printings.
Second Edition includes some modern advanced bidding systems and
conventions, like Two over One, a system used by many modern
tournament players, Roman Key Card Blackwood, New Minor
Forcing, Reverse Drury, Forcing No Trump, and others.
Also included is a detailed Guide to
Bids and Responses, along with the most detailed, 12-page
Glossary ever published, as well as examples to make learning the game
even easier. Click book to order.
Married Life (8/10)
by Tony Medley
From the very start, with
Doris Day singing “I Can’t Give You Anything But Love,” this is a
captivating, atmospheric thriller about a man, Harry Allen (Chris
Cooper), who wants to murder his wife, Pat (Patricia Clarkson), because
he doesn’t want to hurt her feelings when he leaves her for Kay Nesbitt
(Rachel McAdams). With that humorous premise, this is far from a comedy.
There are some amusing lines and situations, but the story is deadly
Told with a voice over by
Harry’s best and oldest friend, Richard Langley (Pierce Brosnan), this
is a film that surprises up to the end. Once again, Brosnan gives a
solid performance. From a guy who was a glitzy but insubstantial
presence, an image that was solidified by his appearances in three James
Bond films, in all of which he disappointed me, he did a 180 degree
career turn with “The Matador” (2005). Cooper, McAdams, and Clarkson are
superb, but Brosnan is the glue that holds the story together. Richard
defines his own character when Harry suggests that he should find
himself a fine girl like Kay for himself, responding, “You know how
honest to god wonderful women go running and screaming when they see me
coming.” But Richard does take Harry’s suggestion to heart, much to
Harry’s ultimate dismay.
Director Ira Sachs (who
also has a co-writer credit with Oren Moverman) has created a wonderful
1949-ambience for this period story which is based on the book “Five
Roundabouts to Heaven” by John Bingham. The year 1949 is evocatively
captured in every scene in “right on” costuming, cars, and set
Early in the film, Sachs
makes an effective time lapse with a quick dissolve as Harry, Kay, and
Richard are having dinner in a crowded restaurant that dissolves into
the waiters cleaning up the almost-empty restaurant with the three still
there talking. This is such a better way to show time passing than the
clumsy vehicle used by most directors, showing a montage of the
characters talking and laughing with quick cuts to indicate the passage
of time but no dialogue the audience is able to hear.
McAdams continues to
develop into one of the best actresses extant. She reminds me of the
equally beautiful Tuesday Weld, who was a much better actress than
anyone ever gave her credit for being. Fortunately for Rachel, she
doesn’t have the flawed reputation to live down that Tuesday created for
herself when she was a teenager, which constantly haunted her career.
This is one of the better
movies of the year so far.
February 15, 2008