Top 3: Madonna.

It is probably impossible to say these are my favourite Madonna songs since she has so many good ones I think only those who say they don't like her find at least one they love. Anyway, these 3 are absolutely on the top for me, not only for the music but also for the beautiful lyrics and, as it is obvious with Madonna, they are different yet similar. I don't think anyone in contemporary pop music is as influential, successful and admired as Madonna is for her past, her present and her future alike.
1. Like a Prayer

One of the most beautiful songs of the last decades, there's no need to say anything more.
2. Frozen

The dark era - the lyrics, the video, the image, everything is brilliant.
3. Beautiful Stranger

Though I don't like Austin Powers, I love this song. It says what women feel when they would like to seduce that certain Beautiful Stranger...



I know it will sound terrible for those who like "rebellious" music and consider The Beatles one of these, but even the Vatican approves one my favourite musical eras: the '60s. And though I don't know what they would have to say about The Doors, it was interesting reading this article and no matter how cliche the last few words are, they are absolutely right (but thank God we've got some exceptions even today!):

Vatican media are praising the Beatles' musical legacy and sounding philosophical about John Lennon's boast that the British band was more popular than Jesus.
Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano recalls that Lennon's comment outraged many when he made it in 1966.
But it says in its Saturday edition that the remark can be written off now as the bragging of a young man wrestling with unexpected success.
The newspaper as well as Vatican Radio last week noted the 40th anniversary of the Beatles' "White Album."
It said the album demonstrated how creative the Beatles were, compared with what it called the "standardized, stereotypical" songs being produced today.


It's officially winter.

No matter what scientists say, for me winter starts when I realize the fact that Christmas will be here very soon - and it happens a different day every year. This year it was today, when it first snowed and also, it's the day when I see the new traditional Coca Cola advertisement with the trucks, the lights, the well-known music. I don't know why exactly this is what makes me get in the Christmas/winter mood but it is. Below are some Coca Cola ads you all have seen before and then, the latest (and its extended version) that I think is great because it really is international - just like Coca Cola.

And the new ad:


A taste of Hungary.

What I really like about my country's culture (other than the sweets and acrimonious food) is the music our artists made ca. from the '50s to the end of the '80s. Whe have a lot of iconic songs everyone here knows by heart, they are mostly ballads with beautiful lyrics (because it's easy to write beautiful things in a language like ours since it has dozens of words for basically anything). One of these songs is the beautiful Valaki mondja meg (Someone please tell me).
I tried to translate the lyrics the best I could but of course the rhymes and the sound is not as beautiful as the original version, performed but well-known artist Gábor Presser and his band LGT and the artists of Vígszínház (a famous and legendary theatre in Budapest).

So, the lyrics:

Someone please tell me what life is like,
Someone please tell me why it's like that,
Someone please tell me why life is nice
Someone please tell me why it's not,

Someone please tell me why people are good,
Someone please tell me why they're not,
Someone please tell me why they become evil,
Someone please tell me why they don't,

Someone please tell me who to believe,
Someone please tell me who not to,
Someone please tell me where can someone get,
What the water of life tastes like.

Someone please tell me the long years
Why seem to be only a moment,
Someone please tell me what it means "gone",
Someone please tell me where it's gone.

Someone please tell me how to live,
My father told me not to hurt others,
Someone could see me hurting you,
Someone could see you hurting me.

Someone please tell me why we're here,
My mother said "be happy, son"
But mother didn't say why not on this world,
My mother didn't say, tell me why.

And the video of the original recording:
(unfortunately I couldn't embed it...)

This is another version I found, performed by other respected artists:



The moment Roberto Benigni won an Oscar for La vita è bella back in 1999 made history - who can not recall Sophia Loren calling his name and then his rather whimsical way to the stage? Well, if you can't, here it is:

The thing about Benigni is that he is absolutely funny yet he has not made the mistake of many others comics who don't know how to be serious. With the aforementioned
La vita è bella (Life is Beautiful) he has proved to anyone who doubted that he is not only a brilliant film maker but he also has a huge soul and is very emotional. This film is different from the other films depicting World War II and the tragic of the Jews and it is also important because many people had stated many times that Italian cinema was dead. With this movie, this statement has lost its value. It's a classic that no-one seems to dislike, a "war film" without the usual tools of a war film, it's entertaining, funny and so touching I can hardly imagine any normally sensitive being who doesn't have tears in his eyes towards the end of film. Even for those who believe European cinema is nothing compared to Hollywood (or maybe especially for them??), it's a must-see.

My other film starring (and written and directed by) the wonderful Benigni is Johnny Stecchino. If there is a kind of humour that is so silly you can't resist it, Johnny Stecchino is on the list. Again, Benigni's character is someone a bit simple but loveable, with a mighty heart and an irresistible adoration for THE woman. This adoration is what turns out to be dangerous many times in the movie and it's not even the greatest challenge "Johnny" has to fight! I know it's a bit hard to get this movie anywhere out of Italy but if you can, I don't think you'll be disappointed. After all the unbearably stupid comedies this one will be refreshingly and surprisingly good.


Karl again and again...

Probably you have already seen the latest "it" picture on various blogs (originally from this one: On the Runway), depicting a very (and by very, I mean really) young Karl Lagerfeld.
The style is the same and if you ask me, the face is very recognizable as well.
It's only the hair that's different... Thank God!

Image source: Catwalk Queen


My new darling.

There are many people out there who change gadgets like lingerie - I am not one of them. I have emotions for my things and just because they're not that modern I don't stop loving them. This is why it took me years to get to the point where I say I would like to buy a new iPod. I used to have a mini and loved it dearly but I decided to "break up."
Originally, I wanted to buy a 3rd generation black nano, simply because I loved its shape more. But with the arrival of the 4th generation, stores sold out and I had to choose: a 4th generation in any colour, or a 3rd generation in that strange green or pink shade (yes, the important questions of life...). Considering the latest nano's new features, I gave in. I bought the silver version because I loved that the click wheel is black and on all the other colours (except for black) it's the usual white. I also found silver more elegant and more "me", so there was no place for hesitating.
To speak about the music-related functions, I really like Cover Flow (especially that it automatically appears when I tilt the iPod sideways) and the shuffle mode (I just have to shake) could be great too, IF I ever used shuffle mode. About the also new Genius feature... I must admit I haven't tried it yet but the idea is nice and I'm sure it's even nicer to use it.
The display of course is beautiful and the shape... I can not find words. Just imagine what it feels like after the "big, chunky mini"! I find it a bit strange though that the earphones have to be plugged in at the bottom but that's about the only thing I could question.
The other features, like that I can watch photos and videos are good but not that new and/or important but you can never know when you'll need them, right?
I read that with a compatible microphone it's also a voice recorder that actually is wonderful news since I was planning to buy a voice recorder, too.
Being the Apple and iPod lover that I am, of course I adore my new iPod. But it's not because I'm partial, it's because it's simply brilliant!!!



I decided to do this post about Elegy, the movie (based upon The Dying Animal by Philip Roth, I already have a post about it with the title Let's talk about sex...) because it just got to our country (staright to DVD, of course) and has got many bad reviews (as far as I know it wasn't very well-received abroad either). I had the chance of seeing only a few weeks after it hit theatres in Spain and I must admit I understand why some people don't like it.
BUT: I love it. I read the novel before watching the film and I think the creators found the way to transmit the atmosphere of the book, that strange mood that makes it different from others, that makes the sometimes vulgar language seem necessary and anything but unacceptable. It is an interesting movie and book about the rare but absolutely not impossible case when a totally normal young woman loves an elder man.
What I didn't feel in the book but is present in the film is that the girl, Consuela is like a fairy - like she was a dream. Maybe the whole movie is dream-like but this difference from the written version is not a bad thing, actually, it's wonderful.
Of course, the movie is an independent piece, not really the kind of picture that attracts masses to the cinema. But it is very well done if you like these kinds of films. I understand if someone says they expected more or something else because of the actors (who are great in their roles, again), or because they didn't read the book and didn't know what it's like or because they read it but thought it could have been made differently. But in my opinion, it's a great interpretation. They didn't change too much and what they changed didn't reduce the value of the result which is quite rare with based-upon-a-book movies.

I suggest this movie, even if you can't enjoy it as much as I do every time I watch it. But believe me, it's like those old classics - you might suffer watching them, but when it's over, you'll really feel you've got something wonderful.


Perhaps I'm obsessed.

I can't remember when my adoration for Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps (the song) started but whenever I listen to it I fall more and more in love with it. The importance of this song in popular culture is demonstrated by the many movies it is featured in - In the Mood for Love (with the original Spanish version, written by Osvaldo Farrés, performed by Nat King Cole with a very English accent), Bad Education by Almodóvar (lip-synched by Gael Garcia Bernal), Brokeback Mountain (also in Spanish), Running with Scissors, Quand J'Étais Chanteur (performed in French), etc.
The most famous versions are the original Spanish one, the Cake cover (from 1997) and the Doris Day version.

Gael Garcia Bernal "performing" Quizás, Quizás, Quizás in Bad Education

Below are four videos, the first one performed by Cake, then the one with Doris Day. The third is Nat King Cole's version and last, but definitely not least, the French version.






Why, why, why, why, why, why WHY?????

When Joaquin Phoenix announced he was going to retire from acting I thought it was one of his strange jokes again. And then his rep confirmed and then he said over and over again and now I'm about to break down and cry all night. Why couldn't someone else, someone just a bit less talented and great retire? Why is it that it's always the best ones who disappear so easily and untimely? Joaquin Phoenix is without a question one of the (if not THE) most talented actors of his generation, an artists who deserves to be called artist, a man who made movies for the sake of movies instead of any intentions of becoming a huge star. His low-key lifestyle and charity work (not to mention all he has done for PETA) turned him into not only someone to love but also to someone too look up to.

And, I must admit, I also love the sense of humor that is very much like mine.
The only comfort I have is that he is not retiring from showbusiness since he is about to concentrate on his musical career that, judging by the songs he sang in Walk the Line, might be more successful than most other actor-turned-musician attempts. Also, he is directing music videos and maybe I am an absolute fool but I think/hope he will direct a movie one day and realize his artistic vein is perfect for this business, too.
Anyway, I will miss him from the screen for ever and since hope dies last, I will wake up every day, hoping the news mention a comeback.


I'm back.

Today's post is only a video; I love animals, especially cats and though I am not the kind of person who watches random videos on YouTube not to be bored (maybe because I can't afford myself to be bored?) but there are certain times in life when videos like this can save your soul. Here it is, a sleepy little cat whom I would adopt any minute. Plus, the music is Angels by Robbie Williams. Need more?

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