Mini Review – Oppenheimer

I’m working my way through the Best Picture nominees for the Academy Awards. In full disclosure, I’m only watching as they become available for streaming. This weekend we watched Oppenheimer.

Directed by Christopher Nolan, Oppenheimer is a biographical drama regarding the life of J. Robert Oppenheimer, the physicist behind the development of the atomic bomb during World War II. Nolan weaves the story that explores Oppenheimer’s moral dilemmas, his own personal struggles, and the consequences of his work.

Cillian Murphy is nominated for the Best Actor Award for his brilliant portrayal of Oppenheimer. The film navigates Oppenheimer’s relationships with colleagues, his inner circle, and the broader historical context of the Manhattan Project.

Presented in the challenges of war time necessities, nonetheless, the film leaves you asking the question “what have we done?”

Oppenheimer is well deserving of the 13 Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture, Best Actor, and Best Supporting Actor, Robert Downey, Jr. for his portrayal of Rear Admiral Lewis Strauss.

I’d like to see Ironman take home the prize.

Of the nominees I’ve seen so far, I’d rank them in this order.

Killers of the Flower Moon
The Holdovers

I still need to see: American Fiction, The Zones of Interest, Poor Things, Past Lives, and Anatomy of a Fall. Odds are I’m not going to make it before the Awards.

Oppenheimer will probably sweep many of the categories. My personal favorite for Best Actor remains Paul Giamatti in The Holdovers.

The 96th Academy Awards will be presented on March 10, 2024 on ABC.

Available on Amazon.

Recaffeinated Mondays: Why Writing on a Monday Sets the Tone for a Productive Week

Let’s face it. Today is a holiday for many of us, but Monday is generally the toughest day of the week. After a relaxing weekend or perhaps a flurry of activities, it can feel daunting to dive back into work mode.

We must stop Monday from coming, but how?

Rather than dreading Monday as a hurdle to overcome, it can be an opportunity to set the tone for a productive and fulfilling week ahead, especially if you’re a writer.

Think about it. Monday can be a great day for writing.

Fresh Start, Fresh Ideas: Monday gives us a clean slate brimming with possibilities. It’s the perfect time to harness the energy of a fresh start and channel it into your writing. Whether you’re working on a novel, a blog post, or a business proposal, the beginning of the week offers the mental clarity needed to generate new ideas and tackle creative challenges head-on.

Beat Procrastination: Hitting the ground running on a Monday, especially after a great weekend, can be a challenge. I’m actually coming back to Monday, and technically to work tomorrow, after a week and a half of dealing with a non-COVID plague.

On a side note, recovery from this current round of flu/virus/pestilence, roughly takes seven seasons of Friends.

I digress.

If you make a commitment to writing on Monday, you get a jump on conquering the temptation to put off the important tasks. Like the work in the garage, I should be doing rather than writing this post.

Establish a Routine: Consistency is key when it comes to writing. I try to write every day. If I miss Monday, it makes it easier to miss Tuesday. You get the idea. Writing is about being consistent, even when you don’t feel like it.

Set Achievable Goals: Nearly ten years ago, I set a goal to write a thousand words a day. I’ve probably done that about eighty percent of the time. I took some breaks when there was a lot going on, or last summer during the Old Man Bucket List Road Trip ™. Granted, I’ve written some crap. But I’ve written consistently. Monday is a day to review those goals and get a fresh start if we’ve detoured from the plan.

Start Strong, Finish Strong: Starting the week strong sets the tone for the next six days. Hit the goal on Monday, it’s easier to do the same on Tuesday, then Wednesday. You get the idea. Eventually it’s a habit and it feels strange not to do it.

Don’t just put Monday writing down as something to cross off your to-do list. Consider it a great way to grasp the opportunities for the week that lies ahead.

It’s Monday, you still have time to do some writing.

I still have to work in the garage.

Available on Amazon.