‘my rock and my refuge’ book tour: interview with author Rachel Kovaciny.

Hey, everyone! Today, I’m thrilled to present an interview with Rachel, a dear friend and a gifted writer. I reviewed her newest book My Rock and My Refuge a couple days ago, so if you’re wondering what all the hype is about, go check out my review! And now, let’s get right into the interview.


Describe My Rock and My Refuge in five words.

Human beings don’t thrive alone.

What first inspired you to write My Rock and My Refuge?

Um. Well, I came up with the basic idea for it about the time I wrote Cloaked. I knew I wanted to do a series, and I kind of mapped out which six fairy tales I thought I could retell as westerns — and that was back in 2016. So the first germination, I don’t directly remember. I do know my idea from the start was to retell Beauty and the Beast with a heroine who wasn’t a starry-eyed teenager. And it all built from there.

What was the hardest part about writing My Rock and My Refuge? The easiest?

The length has been a new challenge — the second round of revisions bumped it up to 125,000 words, which is far and away the longest thing I’ve ever written. The whole writing and publishing process has just been so much longer because, even though the final version is only around 103,000 words, that’s twice as long as any of the previous books I’ve published, and so every step takes twice as long.

The easiest part was getting to know the characters while writing the first draft. I didn’t have one single stinker who didn’t want to open up, this time. Usually, I have at least one who just will not talk to me and share their motives or plans or desires, but everyone in this was really amenable!

What elements of Beauty and the Beast are included in My Rock and My Refuge?

BATB is tricky to retell, I found, because it doesn’t have as many recognizable outward elements as a lot of fairy tales. Like, there’s a rose and a painting of Beast before his transformation, and a beautiful person and a not-beautiful person. Not like Cinderella with her glass slipper and her fairy godmother and her beautiful ball gown and the coach, etc. I really had to dig into the story itself to find the core themes and story arcs, and go with those.

So, yes, there’s a rose that gets taken without permission. The ‘beast’ lives in a castle-like house. We do see a painting of him from before his scars. The main character is a beautiful woman. Instead of a magic mirror that lets her see her family, we have telegrams and letters. Also, the original version of BATB has lots of siblings for Beauty — sisters who are snide and selfish, and brothers who are just absolutely wonderful. They try to take their sister’s place as the Beast’s captive, they try to stop her from returning to him later — they’re super. So I gave my Beauty, Marta, a wonderful brother, Jakob, who goes on her journey with her, protects her when he can, guides and comforts her… but also causes a few problems. They have vain sisters back home, too.

But what I really leaned into was the themes of Beauty and the Beast, which I see as being 1) It’s not good to live alone — people need companionship, and 2) When you love someone, they become lovable, not the other way around. And I tried to work those into the story arcs for both Marta and Arthur — both of them have been really lonely, and both of them are not especially lovable in some ways, but when they start to love each other, then they each become more lovable.

Is there any special significance to the names of your main characters—Arthur Wendell and Marta Beckmann?

Of course there is! Arthur means “bear.” Wendell also means “bear.” Not only does Arthur’s backstory involve a significant encounter with a bear, but he even compares himself to a bear hiding in a cave, at one point.

Marta comes from the Bible account of Mary and Martha, two sisters who were friends with Jesus. Martha is described as an incredibly hardworking and hospitable woman who works and works to make a meal for Jesus and his disciples. Marta here has that same drive to serve and help and make and do. And she also needs to learn that she can’t and should not do everything — that listening to God and relying on him more than on herself is more important.

Beckmann means baker in German. The Beckmann family have been bakers for a long time, so that made sense to me for a family name. And it looks distinctly German, so I like that it tells you their ethnicity right away.

Can you share a few of your favorite, non-spoilery quotes to whet our appetite?

Try these for size:

We found ourselves surrounded by buildings that all leaned drunkenly to one side. Paint peeled from their wooden walls, and the roofs bowed and twisted at unnatural angles. The windows in those buildings had no glass, making me think of empty eye sockets. I shivered.

/

“We maybe all should have scars we can see, if they would help us remember the times when we have been hurt but He did not allow us to be destroyed. The scars can remind us of escaping too, can they not? Even the ones no one else is seeing.”

/

When he had closed the door behind himself, I groaned. This would not do. I should not be noticing how nice my employer looked when he walked. I should not be saying things to make him smile. Between us, there could be a small comfortableness, only that. No friendship. Certainly nothing beyond friendship. I must watch myself.

/

I closed my eyes. This, I thought, is how any woman would like to be kissed. As if she is a treasure that a man does not want to let go of.

/

Big Ben had the strangest response of them all: he placed one hand on my head and said, “Bless you for reminding us to be human, Marta Beckmann.” Then he turned away before I could pretend I had not seen the tears in his eyes.

Who’s your favorite secondary character?

Jakob, Marta’s brother. He’s a brick. But he’s also funny. And kind. And loyal. And protective. He’s how I’d want to be if I was an older brother instead of an older sister.

Which character do you relate to the most?

I see myself the most in Mrs. Craig. She’s sensible and hard-working, she’s kind and welcoming, and she sticks with her friends no matter what.

What music did you listen to while drafting My Rock and My Refuge?

Mostly, I listened to the soundtrack for Quigley Down Under by Basil Poledouris. That really seemed to hit this book’s cozy, hopeful, but also serious vibe really well. The first draft and the two rewrites were probably 99% that soundtrack. During polishing, though, I went more for Bobby Darin and Dean Martin because they keep me energized.

What’s coming next in the Once Upon a Western series?

Directly next, probably a short story follow-up to MRAMR. The next book, though, will be called Steadfast and is a retelling of the Steadfast Tin Soldier that is going to be… gritty. And dark. And somewhat violent — we’ll get an actual shoot-out or two, and definitely some brawling. So that will be very different!

What is something you hope readers take away from My Rock and My Refuge?

That isolation doesn’t help. Avoiding people, hiding from people — it never leads to good and healthy things. Did I write this book during the aftermath of a pandemic in which many people became afraid of being around other people? Yes, I did. Am I a very shy introvert who often has trouble wanting to be around people? Yes, I am. Do I write my books to preach to myself sometimes? No, not sometimes — always.

Also, pray first. That’s a huge thing I taught myself with this book. I even got myself a ring with that inscribed on it that I wear every day now because I am so bad about remembering to pray before I jump in and try to fix things myself.

Any writing and/or self-publishing advice to share?

Learn how to persevere. Writing for publication is a long haul. If you give up whenever you’re discouraged, then you’re going to have a lot of problems. Get stubborn and don’t let yourself give up.

Thanks so much for allowing me to interview you, Rachel!


Where to find ‘My Rock and My Refuge‘ + Rachel Kovaciny online

Purchase My Rock and My Refuge

Add My Rock and My Refuge on Goodreads

Book tour + giveaway!

Author website

Author newsletter sign-up (free novella!)

Bookstagram

Goodreads

Amazon author page

Main blog

Book blog


Do you enjoy fairytale retellings? Did those beautiful quotes inspire you to read My Rock and My Refuge? Do let me know your thoughts about Rachel’s answers!

Eva-Joy

book review: My Rock and My Refuge by Rachel Kovaciny.

Beauty and the Beast… re-imagined

Marta knows she shouldn’t feel this way toward Mr. Wendell. She needs to keep her job as his servant, especially because her family back in Germany depends on the money she and her brother Jakob send home. Marta’s new feelings can’t be as important as helping her family save their bakery, can they?

Marta doesn’t want to believe the rumors that Mr. Wendell profited from another’s tragedy to gain his wealth. Although his face bears terrible scars, she sees past them to his kind and generous heart. Still, she wonders why he never leaves his big house high in the Colorado mountains. Does he hide himself away because of his disfigured face, or because he has a guilty conscience?

While Marta tries to push away her questions, others are determined to find answers. Their efforts lead to a fresh tragedy that threatens Marta’s hope of finding happiness with Mr. Wendell. Will Marta fail her family and her new friends, or will God bless her efforts to build a happy future for them all?


I remember reading an early draft of My Rock and My Refuge in the summer of 2021 (before it even had a proper title). I read the whole thing in one day and when I was finished, I told my mom “All of the Once Upon a Western books have had heart. But this book has a soul.” Now, over a year later, I’m thrilled to celebrate the release of such a special book—first with this review and, in a couple days, an interview with Rachel herself.

My Rock and My Refuge is a Beauty and the Beast retelling, and it was a lot of fun seeing all the different ways Rachel incorporated aspects of the fairytale. The stolen rose, the magical mirror, [Disney] Belle’s love of reading (which is uniquely subverted in this retelling), a painting of the Beast, helpful servants, a curse (of sorts), and so on.

Additionally, My Rock and My Refuge contains elements of Jane Eyre. What those elements might be, you’ll just have to read the book to find out. (But there are no wives locked in attics, manipulative heroes, or St. Johns. So…not to worry! XD)

On that note, Marta Beckmann, the main character of My Rock and My Refuge, reminds me of an older Jane Eyre. But she’s also her own forthright person. Although Marta is usually right in her observations of people and situations, she’s not perfect—I absolutely loved how she realizes that she needs to depend on God at all times (instead of herself).

…too often, I relied on myself and my abilities for help, and only asked our Lord for guidance or assistance if I could not solve something myself. That was the wrong order.

When I’m feeling discouraged or downhearted, I gravitate toward movies, shows, and books that have a more overt Christian message. My Rock and My Refuge contains a few theology-heavy conversations (and Marta’s internal monologue is filled with references to her faith and her Lord). I can see why all of that would come across as preachy to some people, but sometimes that kind of thing is just what I need, personally. So I don’t mind the focus on morals and attending church and correcting one’s behavior and thoughts to match up with God’s will.

But anyway! Back to the characters…

Arthur Wendell is the ‘Beast’ in this retelling, but he’s far from beastly. A little gruff at first, even rude. But he’s a good man at heart, something that quickly becomes clear. No, he doesn’t give Marta his library. But he gives her something even better—the means of learning how to read the books in his library. Wendell is deeply loyal to the people he cares for, and that soon includes Marta. Their romance is straightforward and sensible…but also swoon-worthy.

Speaking of swoon-worthy, Marta’s brother Jakob is a sweetheart. Stubborn, but a sweetheart. I agree with another reviewer who said that Jakob should get his own spin-off. I also liked Dan McLeod (Arthur’s friend), Mrs. Craig (Arthur’s housekeeper), Peter Craig (Chip? XD), the miners who buy Marta’s bread, the Lings (friends of Marta’s), and so on. One thing I appreciate about My Rock and My Refuge is that there’s plenty of conflict without anyone being nasty. (Well, with the exception of a few very minor, very racist characters.)

And last but not least, there’s Alex McLeod. He’s the ‘Gaston’ of My Rock and My Refuge (but not a villain). I have the biggest soft spot for Alex. He’s not-so-secretly my favorite character, bringing good days to his mother and buying Marta’s bread and going through the pain of suddenly being an only child instead of the youngest child. I think I’m probably in the minority when it comes to liking Alex, but that’s okay. 😉

My Rock and My Refuge is a Western, a romance, and a fairytale, all wrapped into one beautiful story. It’s like a loaf of good bread: warm, wholesome, and strengthening to the heart (see Psalm 104:15b). I think you’ll love it! I know I do. ❤

Where to find ‘My Rock and My Refuge‘ + Rachel Kovaciny online

Purchase My Rock and My Refuge

Add My Rock and My Refuge on Goodreads

Book tour + giveaway!

Author website

Author newsletter sign-up (free novella!)

Bookstagram

Goodreads

Amazon author page

Main blog

Book blog


Have you read My Rock and My Refuge yet? Do you plan to? Let me know in the comments!

Eva-Joy

ranking Peter Jackson’s Middle-earth movies (extended editions, naturally).

This blog post is a contribution to A Tolkien Blog Party 2022 hosted by The Edge of the Precipice.

I may have some quibbles with how Peter Jackson chose to portray Tolkien’s stories and characters (more on that later), but the fact remains that Jackson got many, many more things right than he got wrong. I truly love both the Lord of the Rings trilogy and The Hobbit trilogy! But…I do love some of those films more than the others, so today I’ll be ranking all six from least-favorite to most-favorite. There will be fangirling, a few critiques, and maybe a controversial ranking or two. Let’s go!


6. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (2013)

What I like: The usual suspects—Martin Freeman’s Bilbo, everything with Smaug, the beautiful visuals. The spider fight in Mirkwood is also good stuff, particularly the bit where Bilbo goes crazy over the ring. Excellent work from our beloved Martin Freeman. I also enjoy the soundtrack! The new leitmotifs for Kili + Tauriel and Laketown are great.

What I don’t like: It’s boring? Really boring? Your mileage may vary, of course, but there are only a handful of scenes in The Desolation of Smaug that really capture my attention. Beorn, Mirkwood, Gandalf investigating the return of Sauron…sadly, I’m bored more often than not. Oh, and don’t get me started on the orc attack in Laketwon. *yawns*

Ultimately: One of these films had to be in last place. There’s still a lot about Desolation that I like, but at the end of the day I’m not a fan of its too-long sequences (river chase, sneaking around Laketown, orc attack) and downer ending.

5. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012)

What I like: All of the Shire scenes are pitch-perfect, no question about it. And casting was not one of the faults of the Hobbit trilogy. I know I’ve already mentioned Martin Freeman’s Bilbo, but he bears mentioning again! Rarely have I seen an actor and a character so well suited for each other. The opening bit with him and Gandalf and “good morning” is cinematic gold.

(Oh, and the soundtrack is also splendid, as always.)

What I don’t like: Radagast. 😛 And the whole Goblin-town sequence is (again) boring.

Ultimately: An Unexpected Journey is perhaps the coziest of Peter Jackson’s Middle-earth films. I’ll always be happy to rewatch it, even if I do skip over Radagast’s scenes. (I just do. not. like. him.)

4. The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002)

What I like: Rohan, Théoden & family, Gandalf’s return, Andy Serkis’ brilliant performance, Helm’s Deep, “Look for my coming,” THE MUSIC, the flashback scene w/ Boromir, the last march of the Ents, Merry and Pippin.

What I don’t like: I’m not going to talk about this at great length, but Faramir’s character (or lack thereof) in The Two Towers consistently rubs me the wrong way. Not a fan. I also think that TTT is the slowest-paced and least uplifting installment in the LOTR trilogy. (Which I suppose isn’t suprising, as it’s the middle section and so much still has to be resolved.)

I also don’t care for the subplot with Aragorn’s ‘death.’ It doesn’t add much (if anything) to the overall story, so it feels like a waste of time.

Ultimately: There really is a lot to love about The Two Towers (especially Théoden’s character arc!!!), but even Sam’s speech at the end can’t lift the forboding, gloomy vibes.

3. The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (2014)

What I like: It’s the cast and characters that really elevate this movie. Bilbo, Thorin, Gandalf, Bard, Thranduil, Kili, Fili and the list goes on. I love them! The relationships between these characters, the drama, Thorin’s downward spiral and subsequent redemption, Bilbo’s return home, that final scene, ‘The Last Goodbye’…it’s all so good. Not as epic as The Return of the King, no doubt, but very, very good in its own right.

What I don’t like: The titular battle drags on and on and, if you watch the extended (R-rated) edition, it ends up being extremely gory. Ugh.

Ultimately: On a different day, I might have ranked The Two Towers above The Battle of the Five Armies. But I really do love Armies this much. It’s bittersweet and beautiful and I want to rewatch it right now.

2. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)

What I like: Where to begin??? I’m getting choked up just thinking of certain scenes and lines from this glorious film. But I’ll try to write out a list of my absolute favorite things. They are…

Minas Tirith, Faramir and Pippin’s friendship, Frodo not giving up, the music (always have to mention that), the ride of the Rohirrim (!!!!!!!!!), the 1.5 scenes devoted to Éowyn and Faramir’s romance, Gandalf and Pippin discussing the afterlife, Gandalf and Pippin’s friendship in general, everything after the ring is destroyed, and I could keep going.

What I don’t like: Frodo and Sam’s fight on the Stairs of Cirith Ungol. Nope, nope, nope.

Ultimately: The Return of the King is a masterpiece, deep and detailed and wonderful in every sense of the word. The very best send-off possible for both the characters and the fans. I doubt it will ever be surpassed, as epic finales go.

1. The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001)

What I like: Pretty much everything. No lie.

What I don’t like: I’m sure there’s something, but…what?

Ultimately: The Fellowship of the Ring has three things going for it that no other Middle-earth film has—the entire fellowship travelling and fighting and sightseeing together, (almost) all of Boromir’s scenes, and Howard Shore’s indescribable ‘The Breaking of the Fellowship.’ I absolutely love this film, and it could never have been anywhere on this list but here.


Are you shocked, absolutely shocked that I placed The Battle of the Five Armies higher than The Two Towers? How would you rank these six films? Do let me know in the comments!

Eva-Joy

a Tolkien Blog Party 2022 tag.

The annual Tolkien Blog Party (hosted by Rachel @ The Edge of the Precipice) is running for the duration of this week, and it’s been a LOT of fun so far. As always, Rachel has provided a tag for the party participants to fill out. Here are my answers!

Who first introduced you to Middle-earth?

My oldest brother. He bought all three LOTR films (extended editions, thankfully) and showed them to my family. Although it wasn’t until I watched the trilogy by myself a few weeks later that I became really obsessed, I’ll always have my brother to thank for opening my eyes to the wonders of Middle-earth.

Has your love of Middle-earth affected your life?

I have a whole shelf dedicated to Tolkien books and movies and merch, so…yeah. 😉 The books and movies and movie soundtracks are all so beautiful; my life is richer because of them.

Have you ever dressed up like a Tolkien character?

Nope. Maybe someday though!

What people in your real life would you want in your company if you had to take the ring to Mordor?

The first person I thought of was my pastor. Which might sound a little odd, but he’s a good archer and knows a lot about the outdoors, camping, edible plants, and all that. He’d also provide spiritual guidance and encouragement when the ring/the quest threatened to send us all plunging into despair. I see this as an absolute win.

As for the rest of our group, I can think of a few other people in my church who’d be good to bring along. But my pastor is my number one pick.

What Middle-earth location would you most like to visit?

Rivendell, for Elrond and the beauty and nostalgia and friendliness of it all. My second and third picks are easily Minas Tirith and Ithilien

Are there any secondary characters you think deserve more attention?

Éomer. Farmer Maggot. Beregond. Almost everyone from The Silmarillion.

Would you rather attend Faramir’s wedding or Samwise’s wedding?

I’M TORN. Probably Sam’s wedding, even though I love Faramir a lot more. If I saw Faramir, I’d probably end up wishing I was the one marrying him. XD Whereas at Sam’s wedding, I could focus on the delicious food and possibly have a chat with Frodo and/or Merry. Which would be wonderful.

How many books by J.R.R. Tolkien have you read?

The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, The Silmarillion, Letters from Father Christmas, and Leaf by Niggle (which is more a short story than a full book).

Are there any books about Middle-earth or Professor Tolkien (but not written by him) that you recommend?

A Hobbit, a Wardrobe, and a Great War was quite good. As was On the Shoulders of Hobbits.

List up to ten of your favorite lines/quotations from the Middle-earth books and/or movies.

...[the Ring] abandoned Gollum. Only to be picked up by the most unlikely person imaginable: Bilbo from the Shire! Behind that there was something else at work, beyond any design of the Ring-maker. I can put it no plainer than by saying that Bilbo was meant to find the Ring, and not by its maker. In which case you also were meant to have it. And that may be an encouraging thought. —LOTR, ‘The Shadow of the Past’

The dark figure streaming with fire raced towards them. The orcs yelled and poured over the stone gangways. Then Boromir raised his horn and blew. Loud the challenge rang and bellowed, like the shout of many throats under the cavernous roof. For a moment the orcs quailed and the fiery shadow halted. —LOTR, ‘The Bridge of Khazad-dûm’

“But it does not seem that I can trust anyone,” said Frodo.

Sam looked at him unhappily. “It all depends on what you want,” put in Merry. “You can trust us to stick with you through thick and thin – to the bitter end. And you can trust us to keep any secret of yours – closer than you keep it yourself. But you cannot trust us to let you face trouble alone, and go off without a word. We are your friends, Frodo. Anyway: there it is. We know most of what Gandalf has told you. We know a good deal about the ring. We are horribly afraid – but we are coming with you; or following you like hounds.” —LOTR, ‘A Conspiracy Unmasked’

“Look at me. You look at me.” —Bard, The Battle of the Five Armies (2014)

“A great Shadow has departed,” said Gandalf, and then he laughed, and the sound was like music, or like water in a parched land… —LOTR, ‘The Field of Cormallen’

“If ever beyond hope you return to the lands of the living and we re-tell our tales, sitting by a wall in the sun, laughing at old grief, you shall tell me then.” —LOTR, ‘The Forbidden Pool’ (especially because Tolkien also quoted this in one of his letters to Christopher, who was away fighting during WWII 😭)

And the ship went out into the High Sea and passed on into the West, until at last on a night of rain Frodo smelled a sweet fragrance on the air and heard the sound of singing that came over the water. And then it seemed to him that as in his dream in the house of Bombadil, the grey rain-curtain turned all to silver glass and was rolled back, and he beheld white shores and beyond them a far green country under a swift sunrise. —LOTR, ‘The Grey Havens’

There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach. —LOTR, ‘The Land of Shadow’

And as if in answer there came from far away another note. Horns, horns, horns, in dark Mindolluin’s sides they dimly echoed. Great horns of the north wildly blowing. Rohan had come at last. —LOTR, ‘The Siege of Gondor’

“I will take the Ring,’ he said, ‘though I do not know the way.—LOTR, ‘The Council of Elrond’


How were you introduced to Middle-earth? What are some of your favorite Tolkien quotes? Let me know in the comments!

Eva-Joy

an appreciation of Éomer.

This blog post is a contribution to the 10th Annual Tolkien Blog Party hosted by The Edge of the Precipice.

While Frodo will forever be my favorite Lord of the Rings character (with Boromir not far behind), Éomer has had a special place in my heart for a while now. Éomer doesn’t get a lot of attention within the fandom, from what I’ve seen, but like many of Tolkien’s characters, he’s wonderful. So today, I’ll be taking a closer look at what makes him one of my favorites.

Éomer is loyal to his family…

The chief obstacles to an easy conquest of Rohan by Saruman were Théodred and Éomer: they were vigorous men, devoted to the King, and high in his affections, as his only son and his sister-son; and they did all that they could to thwart the influ­ence over him that Gríma gained when the King’s health began to fail…It was [Gríma’s] policy to bring his chief opponents into discredit with Théoden, and if possible to get rid of them.

It proved impossi­ble to set them at odds with one another: Théoden before his “sickness” had been much loved by all his kind and people, and the loyalty of Théodred and Éomer remained steadfast, even in his apparent dotage, Éomer also was not an ambitious man, and his love and respect for Théodred (thirteen years older than he) was only second to his love of his foster-father.

‘The Battle of the Fords of Isen,’ Unfinished Tales

Right from the start, we see that Éomer is a loyal, honest, and true-hearted man. The fact that all of Gríma’s manipulation and machinations couldn’t make Éomer waver from his love/respect for his uncle and cousin…it’s truly admirable.

In the movie, of course, it’s very easy to see that Gríma is a creep. But I think that, at the start at least, his deceptions and lies would have been very difficult to spot. If Éomer had already been harboring resentment, dislike, or disloyalty in his heart toward the more royal members of his family, he could have been easy prey for Gríma’s lying flatteries. That he withstood them all says a lot about his character.

…and to his friends, no matter what.

i know it’s a behind-the-scenes pic. but my point still stands, y’know?

At length Aragorn spoke. ‘As I have begun, so I will go on. We come now to the very brink, where hope and despair are akin. To waver is to fall. Let none now reject the counsels of Gandalf, whose long labours against Sauron come at last to their test. But for him all would long ago have been lost. Nonetheless I do not yet claim to command any man. Let others choose as they will.’

‘As for myself,’ said Éomer, ‘I have little knowledge of these deep matters; but I need it not. This I know, and it is enough, that as my friend Aragorn succoured me and my people, so I will aid him when he calls. I will go.’

‘The Last Debate,’ The Return of the King

Éomer’s friendship with Aragorn had a shaky start, but by the time we reach ‘The Last Debate,’ they are firm friends. I mean, Éomer literally walks into Mordor for Aragorn! It makes my heart happy to think of Aragorn ruling Gondor and Éomer ruling Rohan, with such a great friendship between their two countries.

Éomer is a good brother—if a little unobservant at times

Then [Aragorn] laid [Éowyn’s] hand in Éomer’s and stepped away. ‘Call her!’ he said, and he passed silently from the chamber.

‘Éowyn, Éowyn!’ cried Éomer amid his tears. But she opened her eyes and said: ‘Éomer! What joy is this? For they said that you were slain. Nay, but that was only the dark voices in my dream. How long have I been dreaming?’

‘Not long, my sister,’ said Éomer. ‘But think no more on it!’

‘The Houses of Healing,’ The Return of the King

‘I knew not that Éowyn, my sister, was touched by any frost, until she first looked on [Aragorn]. Care and dread she had, and shared with me, in the days of Wormtongue and the king’s bewitchment; and she tended the king in growing fear. But that did not bring her to this pass!’

‘My friend,’ said Gandalf, ‘you had horses, and deeds of arms, and the free fields; but she, born in the body of a maid, had a spirit and courage at least the match of yours. Yet she was doomed to wait upon an old man, whom she loved as a father, and watch him falling into a mean dishonoured dotage; and her part seemed to her more ignoble than that of the staff he leaned on…Who knows what she spoke to the darkness, alone, in the bitter watches of the night, when all her life seemed shrinking, and the walls of her bower closing in about her, a hutch to trammel some wild thing in?’

Then Éomer was silent, and looked on his sister, as if pondering anew all the days of their past life together.

IBID

Éomer is a wonderfully protective brother to his younger sister. Yes, he should have probably realized just how difficult things were for Éowyn in the days of Théoden’s ‘illness.’ But there was a lot going on, and just because Éomer didn’t see everything that was going on doesn’t mean he didn’t care about Éowyn. Consider this quote that comes right after he discovers she’s still alive after the battle of the Pelennor:

Then hope unlooked-for came so suddenly to Éomer’s heart, and with it the bite of care and fear renewed, that he said no more, but turned and went swiftly from the hall.

Éomer truly cares about Éowyn, worries about her. And he’s very, very happy to see that she and Faramir have fallen in love. In fact, Éomer’s happiness for Éowyn leads to happiness for himself as well—he ends up marrying Faramir’s cousin Lothíriel. ❤

Éomer is capable of great humility.

Théoden rose and put his hand to his side; but no sword hung at his belt. ‘Where has Gríma stowed it?’ he muttered under his breath.

‘Take this, dear lord!’ said a clear voice. ‘It was ever at your service.’ Éomer was there. No helm was on his head, no mail was on his breast, but in his hand he held a drawn sword; and as he knelt he offered the hilt to his master.

‘How comes this?’ said Théoden sternly.

‘It is my doing, lord,’ said Háma, trembling. ‘I understood that Éomer was to be set free. Such joy was in my heart that maybe I have erred. Yet, since he was free again, and he a Marshal of the Mark, I brought him his sword as he bade me.’

‘To lay at your feet, my lord,’ said Éomer.

‘The King of the Golden Hall,’ The Two Towers

‘…we could find a use for Gimli’s axe and the bow of Legolas, if they will pardon my rash words concerning the Lady of the Wood. I spoke only as do all men in my land, and I would gladly learn better.’

‘The Riders of Rohan,’ The Two Towers

Literally, just…read that second quote. I rest my case. I LOVE HIM.

Éomer is brave in the face of terrible danger and overwhelming odds.

The Rohirrim indeed had no need of news or alarm. All too well they could see for themselves the black sails. For Éomer was now scarcely a mile from the Harlond, and a great press of his first foes was between him and the haven there, while new foes came swirling behind, cutting him off from the Prince. Now he looked to the River, and hope died in his heart…

Stern now was Éomer’s mood, and his mind clear again. He let blow the horns to rally all men to his banner that could come thither; for he thought to make a great shield-wall at the last, and stand, and fight there on foot till all fell, and do deeds of song on the fields of Pelennor, though no man should be left in the West to remember the last King of the Mark. So he rode to a green hillock and there set his banner, and the White Horse ran rippling in the wind.

‘The Battle of the Pelennor Fields,’ The Return of the King

When all hope was lost, Éomer continued to fight—both on the Pelennor Fields and in Mordor itself. His courage shines through so clearly on both battlefields. And that’s yet another reason why I love him: like all of Tolkien’s best characters, Éomer doesn’t accept defeat even when everything seems hopeless. The result? The Shadow is destroyed, and Éomer got to be a part of its defeat. He gets a happy ending, and it’s a well-deserved one. ❤


Although I’ve focused on Book Éomer in this post, I have to say that Karl Urban’s portrayal of Éomer is pretty close to perfection. That heartwrenching cry when he finds Éowyn on the battlefield? I rest my case! Or the whole “Théoden king stands alone” “Not alone” exchange. *happy shivers* OR when he takes out two oliphants with one spear throw. o.O And also…he’s just one very, very handsome guy. Which doesn’t hurt matters. At all. 😉

What are your thoughts on Éomer (book and/or movies)? Did this post help you see him in a new light, or have you always known just how awesome he is? I’d love to hear from you in the comments!

Eva-Joy

Wyatt Earp & Doc Holliday in ‘Hour of the Gun’: a legendary friendship.

This blog post is a contribution to Legends of Western Cinema Week.

The dust has settled following the gunfight at the O.K. Corral. The Earps and Doc Holliday stand trial for the shooting. The courtroom is crowded, jumpy, hostile. Doc Holliday takes the witness stand.

“I don’t need a badge to kill,” he says, in response to the prosecutor’s barbed questions.

“Only the word of Wyatt Earp,” the prosecutor sneers.

“I’d go to hell and back on the word of Wyatt Earp,” Doc snaps. Little does he know that that is exactly what he will do: follow Wyatt into the hell of one man’s relentless, bloodthirsty hunt for vengeance.

But let’s go back to the beginning…


Hour of the Gun is a tense Western, unique in that it deals with the aftermath of an event that most films would instead build to as the finale: the shoot-out at the O.K. Corral. That narrative choice makes for a fascinating look at the character of both Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday, and their friendship. And that’s because we see Wyatt and Doc essentially switch roles as they each deal with the consequences of the gunfight.

At the beginning of the film, Wyatt is shown to be a law-abiding, law-upholding man. He is one of the most respected men in Tombstone. He follows the letter of the law and the dictates of his own conscience, the two working together in unison. Doc admires Wyatt’s honesty and sense of honor, even though he might sometimes scoff at Wyatt’s (relative) uprightness.

Wyatt begins to change, however, when Ike Clanton’s men cripple Virgil Earp and kill Morgan Earp, Wyatt’s brothers. The case against Clanton’s men is thrown out of court, so Wyatt and Doc form a posse to bring in Clanton’s gang. (It’s legal for them to do so, though I’m fuzzy on the details.) They are supposed to bring in the men alive, if they want the bounty money, but the first three members of the gang end up being killed—by Wyatt.

Each time, it’s a case of self-defense. Each time, Wyatt had no choice but to shoot. Each time, there were ‘extenuating circumstances.’

And by the third time, Doc begins to suspect something is wrong.

When Wyatt’s posse finds the last member of the gang, Wyatt forces the outlaw into a draw and then loses all self-control, shooting the man multiple times. And Doc sees the truth about his friend.

“Those aren’t warrants you’ve got there. Those are hunting licenses.”

Wyatt has become vicious. Vindictive. Vengeful.

It’s a difficult scene that follows, one where Doc tears into Wyatt for stooping to what is basically (if not technically) murder, for turning his back on law and order.

It’s a scene in which Wyatt says nothing, the truth of Doc’s words clearly shown by his silence.

“Five minutes after we left the OK Corral, I wanted to say, ‘Get Clanton, Wyatt. Get him before he gets you.’ But I didn’t. You don’t speak that way to Wyatt Earp. You’ve got too much respect for him.”

I think on some level, Doc’s bitter rant against Wyatt’s actions is due to the fact that Doc has always looked up to Wyatt a little. Respected him, definitely. And now to see that Wyatt has been engaged in a vengeful killing spree the whole time, that he’s been eaten up by cold, calculated hate…it rattles Doc. Doc has always been ‘the wild one,’ if you will. The one who drinks too much and gambles too much—and kills too much. But now the roles have been reversed. Now Doc is the level-headed one, the man standing on a higher moral plane than Wyatt.

Wyatt was a hero, in Doc’s eyes. But not anymore. And Doc’s anger and regret and even sadness boils over into a tirade that is almost as painful for us to hear as it is for Wyatt. Why? Because Wyatt and Doc are friends. We know this. They know this. So as much as Wyatt needs to hear what Doc has to say, it still hurts.

It hurts so much, in fact, that Wyatt ends up hitting Doc. (I hate that. So much.)

“That’s all right,” says Doc as he fights off a coughing fit. “This stops.” But Wyatt’s mission of vengeance won’t.

Wyatt is offered the job of Chief U.S. Marshal by men who have no idea that he’s turned vengeful. Instead of giving an answer right away, Wyatt heads down to Mexico to seek vengeance one last time—against Ike Clanton, the man who orchestrated Virgil’s injury and Morgan’s death. Wyatt intends to go alone, but Doc figures out what he’s doing and gets on the same train. Wyatt doesn’t want him along (for obvious reasons), but Doc doesn’t care.

“Buy a return ticket and go take care of yourself.”
“No thank you.”

You have to understand that this isn’t just a friend refusing to leave another friend (though it is that). It’s a dying man refusing to go home and get the treatment that could, if not save his life, then at least prolong it. Doc is dying of tuberculosis, but he won’t leave Wyatt alone. Even if he can’t stop Wyatt from taking his revenge one last time, he’s not going to desert his friend. He’s not going to stop trying to bring Wyatt back to the right side of the law and common morality.

Doc points out that when Wyatt killed Clanton’s gang, it was at least under cover of the law. But tracking Clanton to Mexico and killing him will be a completely lawless act.

“You’re throwing away all the years you’ve lived by the rules.”
“I don’t care about the rules.”
“They’re the only rules there are. And they’re more important to you than you think. You can’t live like me.”

But Wyatt doesn’t listen. “Go back to the hotel. Take care of yourself,” he tells Doc, as he fingers the badge that doesn’t seem to mean much to him anymore.

“No thanks,” Doc says again. In his own way, he’s as relentless as Wyatt.

They find Clanton. And as Wyatt prepares for a shoot-out with the man who killed his brother, he pulls his badge from his pocket and throws it aside. He won’t dishonor the badge, won’t hide behind it any longer.

Whether Wyatt intentionally threw the badge to Doc or not, Doc does catch it. It’s a small moment, but one loaded with meaning. Consider this exchange between Wyatt and Doc from the beginning of the film:

“Doc? Did Virg deputize you?”
“I swore to something he was muttering about.”
“Then
wear the badge.”

Throughout the course of the film, Wyatt has stepped further and further outside the law—maybe not always judicial law, but certainly moral law. And Doc has, from the moment he decided to go to the O.K. Corral, been driven toward the law and justice and doing what’s right…all for the sake of his friend. As Wyatt’s moral compass corrodes, Doc’s begins to work again.

And now Doc catches Wyatt’s badge. He has gone from having to be ordered to wear the badge, to safeguarding that symbol of law and order—just as he has tried to safeguard Wyatt’s sense of law and order throughout the film.

Wyatt does kill Clanton (it’s a fair draw…but still vengeance). A few days (weeks?) later, Doc gives Wyatt back his badge and, in effect, gives Wyatt his blessing in regards to continuing to work as a marshal. Wyatt takes the badge, but he won’t work for the law again.

I like to think that Wyatt makes that choice because he has seen how wrong he’s been, that Doc was right all along, and that it wouldn’t be honorable for him to take up his old job (or a new one, as Chief U.S. Marshal), with the trail of vengeance killings stretching behind him. I like to think all that because it means that Doc did get through to Wyatt and helped re-align his skewed moral compass.

Doc may not have been able to save the lawman, in the end, but he did save the man. He stuck by Wyatt and remained his friend even when they disagreed so sharply, even when it would have been easier and safer to return home and let Wyatt continue to spiral downward.

Hour of the Gun may be bleak at times. But in the middle of the killings, the thirst for vengeance, and the fracturing of a legendary hero, you’ll find a loyal man trying in his own feeble, sarcastic way to rescue his best friend. And that is something worth seeing—worth emulating, even.


Have you ever watched Hour of the Gun? What did you think of it? I’d love to hear from you in the comments!

Eva-Joy

the Legends of Western Cinema Week tag.

It’s that time of year again, folks, and I am so excited! Rachel, Heidi, and Olivia are once again hosting the Legends of Western Cinema Week, complete with all sorts of fun festivities as we celebrate our favorite Western films and characters. I’ve got a blog post about Hour of the Gun (1967) planned for later this week, but right now I’ll be answering the tag questions created by our hosts.

1) Favorite western focused on a lone hero?

I love Shane (1953). A quiet stranger defends the lives, freedoms, and peace of a small group of farmers, then leaves as suddenly as he arrived. Shane is the quintessential Western loner—he represents everything I like and admire about the character type.

2) Favorite western focused on a group of compadres?

The Magnificent Seven (1960) is the obvious answer, and it’s certainly my favorite. But Rio Bravo (1959) is worth a mention as well. Four very different guys band together to ensure a murderer is brought to justice. My favorite of those guys is Dude (Dean Martin), but they all have their good points.

3) Favorite western with a female main character?

True Grit (2010)! Mattie is brave, resourceful, and stubborn—one of my favorite female characters in general. The fact that she’s only fourteen makes her daring deeds all the more impressive. A close second on my favorites list would be Cat Ballou (1965). Jane Fonda’s plays Cat, another young woman who hires a grubby gunfighter to avenge her father’s death. Almost a comedy version of True Grit, if you think about it!

4) Favorite western with a POC main character?

You know, I don’t think I’ve ever watched one. Sigh. I’ve started one: The Magnificent Seven (2016), which I should really give another chance. (It bored me, so I gave up. I think I’d like it better now though.) Any other recs for POC-led Westerns?

5) Favorite western with kids in it?

Does Old Yeller (1957) count as a Western? I think so! Anyway, that’s my pick. If I can manage to type through my tears, that is… 😉

6) Favorite western set somewhere other than the United States?

You know, I thought that The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (1966) might have been set in Mexico—but nope. It takes place in New Mexico. So I’m going with Hidalgo (2004), because sometimes The Vibes are more important than The Decade In Which the Film Is Set.

7) Favorite “western” that doesn’t fit the genre’s dictionary definition?

THE MANDALORIAN. Impeccable Old West energy. Din sounds like a young Clint Eastwood and it’s delightful. He also protects the weak, has a fast draw, and tames a blurrg. What more do you want in a cowboy???

(If you’d like a more in-depth look at TheMandalorian-as-a-Western, check out ‘The Mandalorian: Cowboys in Outer Space‘, an article written by our very own host Rachel!)

8) Favorite funny western?

Support Your Local Sheriff (1969) because I LOVE JAMES GARNER.

(I just rewatched Hour of the Gun last night, so I’m a bit hyper when it comes to JG. Apologies extended. XD)

Seriously though, Support Your Local Sheriff is an absolutely hilarious Western. Jason McCullough (James Garner) arrives in the town of Calendar, CO and is almost immediately elected sheriff of the brawling town. Jason cleans up the town, falls in love with the mayor’s daughter, and faces off against the dastardly Danby family. Such a fun film—I can’t recommend it highly enough for fans of Westerns!

9) Favorite tragic/sad western?

The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962) is steeped in sadness from its very first scene.

Like…the cactus rose. CAN YOU NOT, JOHN FORD?

10) Favorite western TV show?

Wanted: Dead or Alive, starring Steve McQueen, has been my favorite for several years now. Each episode is short (less than a half hour), but many of them pack a narrative punch unmatched by some longer and more well-known shows. I also love F Troop and I think I’d love Maverick if I watched more of it. Oh, and there’s Bonanza and Rawhide of course! But Wanted remains my favorite. ❤

this is one of the funniest production stills
I’ve ever seen.

What are some of your favorite Westerns? Let me know in the comments!

Eva-Joy

‘you are my lucky star’: Don & Kathy’s romance in Singin’ in the Rain.

This blog post is a contribution to The Singin’ in the Rain Blogathon hosted by The Classic Movie Muse.

2022 marks the 70th anniversary of Singin’ in the Rain, a film which is quite possibly the greatest movie musical of all time. Originally, I planned to write about my personal history with the film (including my childhood crush on Gene Kelly), but then I started to think about how many of the musical numbers in the film illustrate the progression of Don and Kathy’s romance. The more I started thinking about that concept, the more fascinated I became. So that’s what I’m going to talk about today!

“All I Do Is Dream of You”

Don and Kathy’s relationship doesn’t begin in the most conventional way. Don jumps into Kathy’s car in a frantic attempt to escape his rabid fans. The conversation that follows degenerates into trading insults. When Don finally exits Kathy’s car, they’re sure they will never see each other again. But just a few minutes later, Kathy and her chorus girl colleagues show up to entertain the guests at a party held in Don’s honor.

This is the song they sing:

At this point in the story, Kathy and Don are in the ‘enemies’ stage of the enemies to lovers trope. Kathy even tries to throw a pie in Don’s face after the performance! Still, this musical number is a sign of things to come. Don does end up thinking about Kathy all. the. time. after she runs out of the party that evening.

(This wasn’t included in the movie, but originally there was a scene where Don sings a wistful reprise of “All I Do” after Kathy leaves. I would have loved to see that.)

“You Were Meant for Me”

Man. This scene and this song made my heart go crazy, back in the day. 😉

At this point in Don and Kathy’s relationship, they’re on good speaking terms. There’s even some hints of a budding attraction. But Don isn’t ready to commit. Yes, he sings a very, very romantic song to Kathy. He even sings it with great sincerity and tenderness. But he’s still holding something back—just look at the lyrics.

If I but dared

To think you cared

This is what I’d say to you

And then the rest of the song is what he would have said…if she cared. At that point, it’s pretty clear that Kathy does care about Don. A lot. But he’s not yet willing to be completely vulnerable and tell her right out how he feels, without relying on a stage or an ‘if only’ song.

“Singin’ in the Rain”

Having bonded over the terrible preview for The Dueling Cavalier, Don and Kathy are truly falling in love. Don walks home in the rain after Kathy bids him goodnight, and he bursts into the spontaneous song we all know and love. By now, Don is becoming more comfortable with admitting that he’s falling in love.

The sun’s in my heart

And I’m ready for love

However, the important thing to note is that Kathy isn’t there to hear his (near) declaration of love. Yes, Don is opening up…but only to himself. (So far.)

“Would You”

Once Cosmo’s idea of dubbing Lina Lamont’s screechy voice is implemented, Don and Kathy spend lots of time together in the recording studio, working on their lines. By this point in the film, they’re in love with each other and know it. But they’re keeping the relationship a secret until after The Dancing Cavalier is released. (It’s kept a secret because Lina isn’t supposed to know that Kathy is on set, much less dubbing her voice.)

In one scene, Kathy dubs over a particularly poignant line while Don watches.

“Our love will last ’til the stars turn cold.”

This line, as spoken by Kathy, moves Don so much that he declares they shouldn’t wait any longer to reveal their secret relationship. He’s ready to move forward with Kathy and let the chips fall where they may. But then Lina bursts in, furious and threatening to blackmail the entire studio…

“You Are My Lucky Star”

Lina’s machinations are finally uncovered in front of everyone. Kathy runs down the aisle, eager to escape the stares and murmurs of the audience. But Don steps in and, uncaring of the hundreds of people watching, begins singing a song meant for Kathy and Kathy alone. A song in which he shares with Kathy just how much she means to him.

You’ve opened heaven’s portal

Here on earth for this poor mortal

Kathy responds in kind. And the film ends with Don and Kathy kissing, fully in love and completely open about that love. It’s a wonderful character arc for both of them, particularly Don (which makes sense, as he’s the main character).


Have you watching Singin’ in the Rain? What’s your favorite song in it? Did you ever have a crush on Gene Kelly? Do let me know in the comments!

Eva-Joy

movie review: Scaramouche.

This review is a contribution to the MGM Blogathon hosted by Silver Screenings.

The French countryside seethes with talk of revolution, but Andre Moreau (Stewart Granger) has bigger problems on his mind—his father has stopped giving him money, his old flame Lenore (Eleanor Parker) is marrying someone else, and—worst of all—Andre just found out that Aline (Janet Leigh), the beautiful woman he met on the roadside and fell in love with, is his half-sister.

With so much on his mind, Andre brushes off his friend Phillipe’s talk of a coming day of reckoning for the French aristocracy. But when Phillipe is killed by Noel, the Marquis de Maynes (Mel Ferrar), Andre vows revenge. He will stop at nothing to avenge his friend—including joining a travelling theatre troupe and hiding behind the role of ridiculous clown Scaramouche.

Scaramouche is a movie I’ve seen many, many times, and it’s always lots of fun. I’m not much a fan of Andre himself—he’s a little too loose for my tastes (and I feel as though Granger is a bit too smug in the role). But the rest of the cast really shines. Eleanor Parker’s Lenore is fiery and breathtakingly gorgeous, giving as good as she gets and holding her own against Andre’s madcap ways. Parker and Granger’s scenes together are full of chemistry and sparks that almost set the screen on fire.

Janet Leigh also does good work, although Aline’s childish character fades a little into the background when contrasted with Lenore’s sparkling presence. (I do love how the two of them work together to save Andre from dueling Noel on more than one occasion. Female allyships are so great to see!)

My favorite character in Scaramouche, surprisingly enough, is Mel Ferrar’s villainous character Noel, the Marquis de Maynes. Noel and Andre are connected on a much more personal level than either of them suspect. Rewatching the film with knowledge of that connection adds even more depth to Noel’s encounters with Andre.

I’m not ordinarily a fan of Ferrar’s work, but he is, in my opinion, the best piece of casting in the whole film. Noel is proud and cruel toward those who cross him, a brilliant swordsman, and…actually a decent boyfriend? He is in love with the queen herself (Marie Antoinette!), but since that can never go anywhere, he courts Aline after the queen recommends her. The moments of thoughtfulness and care that we see from Noel in regards to Aline really do something to humanize him. (Also, Noel’s respectfulness toward women is such an interesting and marked contrast to Andre’s *cough* problematic treatment of Lenore.)

I’m not saying that Noel is not the villain of the film. He definitely is, remaining cold and calculating and heartless throughout. But I did like his relationship with Aline and how sweet he could be to her.

Anyway! I’m here to review Scaramouche, not write an essay about Noel. XD Besides the cast and characters, Scaramouche also boasts detailed, beautiful sets and costuming in vivid Technicolor. This is France just before the revolution and the costuming and set design reflect that. Bright, opulent excess on the part of the aristocrats, darker shades and tones for the common people (good for sneaking around and plotting).

In addition, Victor Young’s score is amazing: rich, thrilling, sumptuous. One of my favorite movie soundtracks. Here is the theme that plays over opening titles, so you can enjoy a sample of the music. (And really, the whole soundtrack is worth a listen.)

If you’re in the mood for an entertaining swashbuckler, I highly recommend Scaramouche. There are some The Scarlet Pimpernel vibes and some The Vikings (1958) vibes. Overall, it’s a terrific film that I’m sure I’ll enjoy for many years to come.

Have you watched Scaramouche? What did you think of it? Let me know in the comments!

Eva-Joy

movie review: flightplan (2005).

Whenever I become obsessed with interested in a new actor, I usually end up watching movies that I would never have watched otherwise. That was the case with Flightplan, which I watched solely for Sean Bean. I was pleasantly surprised, however, by just how much I enjoyed the film in general. (Though Sean Bean remains my favorite part. *wink*)

So what is Flightplan about? Jodie Foster plays Kyle, an American aviation engineer who is heading back to the States (from Germany) with her young daughter Julia and the body of her recently deceased husband. While en route to America, Julia disappears. Kyle is understandably frantic—how on earth could a child disappear from a plane that has been searched top to bottom? As Kyle’s fear and paranoia grows, questions arise in the minds of the crew as to whether or not Julia even existed in the first place.

It’s a bit hard to talk about Flightplan in detail because it’s best if you experience it spoiler-free. That’s what I did and I LOVED all the plot twists. What I can comment on, however is the cast. (Also: James Horner composed the soundtrack. So there’s that.)

Jodie Foster is great as a panicked, yet determined woman with a singular mission: find her child. Peter Sarsgaard is Gene, a sky marshal who acts as a liaison between Kyle and the captain. Sarsgaard was great in the role. And then, of course, there is dear Sean Bean as Captain Rich. As I mentioned already, he’s my favorite part of the film. The captain is in a pretty difficult situation, dealing with an distraught passenger who may or may not be delusional. But he does such a good job. Favorite character. ❤

(Do you know how rare it is for Sean Bean to play a good guy AND *spoilers* survive as well? It’s rare. But it’s what happens in Flightplan, so yay!)

To sum it all up: if you enjoy well-made, well-paced thrillers, The Lady Vanishes (1938), and/or Sean Bean, I highly recommend Flightplan!


This review is a belated contribution to 18 Cinema Lane’s Travel Gone Wrong Blogathon, under the ‘Horrifyingly Wrong’ category.


Have you watched Flightplan? Do you enjoy thrillers? Let me know in the comments!

Eva-Joy

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