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.
Winter’s Bone (8/10)
by Tony Medley
Run time 100 minutes.
Not for children.
Ree Dolly (Jennifer Lawrence) is a 17 year-old
Ozark Mountain girl who is the materfamilias of her mentally ill mother
and her younger brother and sister. Her drug-dealing father has
mortgaged their house to raise bail and has skipped the bail. Ree is
informed by the bail bondsman, Satterfield (Tate Taylor), that unless
she can find him, or prove he’s dead, she’ll lose the house and all the
property in a week. This causes her to traverse dangerous social terrain
as she looks for her father while trying to keep her family intact.
Directed by Debra Granik, adapted by
screenwriters Granik and Anne Rosellini from the novel by Daniel
Woodrell, this is a rough thriller as we follow the indomitable Ree as
she confronts dangerous, violent people while trying to locate her
father. Despite constant threats and setbacks, she relentlessly pursues.
Danger lurks in every confrontation. While there is violence, it all
occurs offscreen and is left to the viewer’s imagination.
It is a realistic exposition of what life is
probably like in the Mountains of Missouri. Lawrence, playing a
17-year-old, was a teenager herself when the film was shot. She gives an
award-quality performance as she appears in almost every scene, stealing
scenes from more mature and seasoned performers. That’s not to say that
the supporting performances aren’t praiseworthy, also, however. They are
so realistic that it wouldn’t be a surprise if they were locals who
filled in the key roles. That’s not the way it was, though. Standing out
is Dale Dickey as Merab, the wife of the family’s godfather, a strong
woman standing in Ree’s way. John Hawkes, as Teardrop, Ree’s drug-addled
uncle, gives a riveting performance, as does William White in a very
short appearance as the family’s godfather. Finally, Tate Taylor is
memorable in his short appearance as the sympathetic bail bondsman.
While Woodrell was raised in the Ozarks and
Granik wasn’t, Granik displays a deft touch here in presenting the
hardscrabble, ramshackle mountain life. She’s helped immeasurably by the
gritty cinematography of Michael McDonough. This looks and feels almost
like a documentary.
If you like movies that are well-crafted,
expertly-directed movies that rely on script, acting, cinematography,
and editing, (as opposed to comic book characters, special effects,
gratuitous violence, and vulgarity) this is one not to miss. If this is
any indication, Granik's talent appears limitless.