Sam Mendes's World War I movie, 1917, is one of the best war movies I have ever seen. And I am a HUGE war movie fan.
Shot in what looks like one continuous take, the movie grabs you from the start and immerses you in the story.
My wife falls asleep often in movies that don't work. She did not sleep during this entire movie. It was surreal, she said, to watch the story unfold this way.
You follow two young British soldiers — Schofield and Blake — as they go on an almost suicide mission: to get across No Man’s Land with a letter to save 1,600 men from a German ambush.
Blade Runner 2049's cinematographer, Roger Deakins, needs to win all kinds of awards for this.
There are stars like Colin Firth, Mark Strong, and Benedict Cumberbatch playing secondary characters in the film, but they are never used to outshine the story. Instead, you are made to care about the two men on an impossible mission, as you gape at the horrors of the First World War, the "The war to end all wars".
Go watch it in IMAX. It is not in 3D but that screen really works well for this movie.
This has to be one of the most fun projects I’ve had the privilege of working on this year. Downstairs is a new adult animated series by Robot Playground and Ervin Han (who also brought you the series Heartland Hubby, which I was also a part of).
It is really something to be working with so much comedic talent.
As we gave out presents to the kids at a minute past midnight, we got a surprise gift in return: this lovely painting from our youngest one.
Behind the painting, there were messages from Isaac and Joy for Mommy and me. And even a message from Faith. (Technically Joy helped her autistic Cheh Cheh to write that message but it was still sweet.)
Joy said her test of whether the paintings looked like her subjects was to ask her big sister questions like:
“Where is Papa?” Faith points to me.
“Where is Mommy?” Points to Mommy.
I tell you, the best presents are kids who love you and know you love them. Even if they drive you crazy sometimes, during the rest of the year.
May the Love and Peace that surpasses all understanding, guard your hearts and minds this Christmas.
This is us a few days ago, on our way to a Krabi family vacation with my younger brother's family. We were a party of 12 and it was like a tour group. It was a short flight but Faith has a fear of flying and major sensory issues on planes. We know it is always a challenge, but we Improvise, Adapt and Overcome. And we step out with faith, surrounded by prayer.
This short video clip will give you an idea of how difficult it is for Faith to fly.
Before this, she stopped twice — once outside the aerobridge, and once outside the plane door — refusing to board until we reassured and consoled her.
Her autism makes her particularly sensitive to the sounds, G-forces and ear pressure of takeoff and landing.
If this happened a few years ago, we would be holding her down as she had a meltdown, trying to remove her seat belt and leave her seat. Once, on another trip, she lay down on the tarmac of Kuantan Airport, just in front of the Firefly plane, and refused to budge. We took a long time to get her on her feet to board the plane.
Over time, she has learned to cope and brave the sensory overload.
This trembling behavior you see in the video is both a form of stimming (self-soothing and modulation) and also the trembling of fear. We gave her a sweet to deal with the ear pressure, and my helper and I took turns to reassure her with touch, and joint compression. When the plane finally leveled out, she calmed down for the rest of the flight. She even took the Beats noise-canceling headphones off and returned them to me. She decided she didn’t need it anymore.
When we finally made it to the hotel, Faith had a huge grin on her face as she tucked herself into bed and rested under the compression of the blanket. That is her holiday bliss face. And her father also had the same grin seeing that happiness.