Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Prairie Home Companion - the movie

Wen't to see this movie with a friend from church tonight. We went to the Kimball's Twin Peak, an old Theater downtown. The Peak, as it is sometimes known, is a small venue with two theaters, a small wine and coffee bar and a small snack bar. The playbill usually includes arty films, foreign language films or controversial movies.

If you have never listened to the Prairie Home Companion on public radio, I recommend it. It is witty, old-fashioned, gently paced, and always makes me feel that I have stepped into a gentler time. Listening to the PHC, you are reminded of small communities where people know each other, take care of each other and are accepting of each other's eccentricities. You will be surprised to find that the Lutheran Church still has old-fashioned potluck suppers, you will hear radio commercials for products that you are never sure are real or if they are part of the schtick. Is the show really sponsored by Blue Ribbon Baking Powder?

Until seeing the movie I was unaware just how much of Garrison Keilor is in the show. Not only is he the very slow talking announcer slash story-teller, but he also sings, and sings well.

For those who need an explosion every half an hour, this is not your kind of movie, but I guess my affection for the radio show is shared, because the list of those appearing in the film is long: Woody Harrelson, Meryl Streep, Lily Tomlin, Tommy Lee Jones, Lindsay Lohan, John C. Reilly, Kevin Kline, Virginia Madsen, and more that I'm forgetting at the moment. This is not the kind of movie that is likely to garner Oscar buzz, break box office records or revive a failing career (not that many listed would be counted in that category). It must simply be the kind of project people want to be involved in.

Something of the tranquil unhurried pace of life is available to you once a week, together with Nordick traditions, Lutheran tales, old songs, banjo, and cowboy guitar, all at the tuner of your radio.

Well, to all of you out there, I wish you leisurly walks with family, the sense of humor to see the faults and foibles of your friends, family and yourself and laugh. May the sound of banjos put a smile on your face, and may you find deep satisfaction in the life you live.

May I suggest that you find a movie showing at Kimball's Twin Peak, take your best guy or gal, have a glass of wine or coffee in the bar, and relax and enjoy. Plan to go there early. If you walk west from the theater, past Josh and John's Ice Cream, you will find a walkway to your left leading between two buildings, most incongruously. I didn't come early enough for this, but wish I had! There you will find the Little Bangkok Thai restaurant. Ask for their recommendations. They have a soup there that is an event. They will know what I mean. Enjoy.


Beth said...

I like that little Thai restaurant and not least because it's down a little alley. Do you mean the Tom Kah Kai? chicken coconut soup that comes in a bowl where they light the blue fire and it comes out a little hole in the top? But then I suppose they serve all their soups in those containers. I want to buy one for home. I once wrote an anniversary poem for Mitch which begins:
"the waiter brings the tom kah kai and once again the flame leaps high" (because we usually get that soup on our anniversary, it speaks of our love, we practically fell in love over bowls of it in our dating years)

I will definitely try to see PHC - sounds wonderful - thank you.

And by the way, I think of your blog as my Mountain Home Companion.

Kim said...

Oh I love that title. I'm going to make it mine! And yes I meant the Tom Kah Kai! They serve other soups with the fire? Neat!