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. This updated 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.  

New in Town (7/10)

by Tony Medley

Run Time 97 minutes.

Charmingly directed by the Danish Jonas Elmer, Lucy Hill (Renée Zellweger) is an ambitious corporate VP who is assigned to try to get a plant in a small Minnesota town back to profitability. After a dismal introduction, she starts a friendship with the local union boss, Ted Mitchell (Harry Connick, Jr.). Her secretary, Blanche Gunderson (Siobhan Fallon Hogan) is the most appealing character in the film. J.K Simmons gives another delightful performance as the laborer’s leader, Stu Kopenhafer. Hogan and Simmons speak in accents that are enchantingly reminiscent of William H. Macy and Frances McDormand in “Fargo” (1996).

The only people who don’t like simple, feel good movies like this are critics, and they have been nearly unanimous in castigating it (18% on Rottentomatoes). But critics often get the disease that if a movie is entertaining there must be something wrong with it.

This is nothing you haven’t seen before, and it is certainly formulaic. But most stories follow similar lines, so to condemn this as being derivative prompts the response, “Name me a film that isn’t derivative.”

Derivative or not, I enjoyed it.

February 4, 2009