Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Rushing to See August Rush

I managed to win tickets to see "August Rush," tonight, in an advanced preview. Instead of asking for two tickets as I usually do, then having the problem of not being able to find anyone to go with me, I only asked for one. I also managed to get a ticket to a cinema close by, for a change. The screening was in Slough, which is in the same county as Bracknell. However, things never work out for me with no hiccups. If I was still driving, then it would have been a simple matter to drive to Slough after work, for the 6:30PM screening. Riding the buses was a different matter.
Usually, the bus I take home gets me to the stop around the corner from my house by 5:35PM. If I stay on the same bus, it will take me to the Bracknell town centre, about ten minutes later. It would be 5:45 and I'd just be in Bracknell. There's no telling how close a connection I would manage with the bus onwards, to Slough. To make matters worse, all this would be happening in rush hour, when the traffic is bad. I could take the train, instead, but that would entail complicated connections, as Slough isn't on the same line as either Bracknell, Camberley, or Farnborough. Furthermore, buying a train ticket would entail extra expense. I can ride the buses for no extra charge, using my weekly bus ticket. I am so short of money these days, that this final consideration tipped the balance for me. I would make the epic journey by bus!
Unable to get out of work early, I departed at my usual time, starting with the 4:15 shuttle bus to Camberley. Being a Wednesday, I had managed to acquire a couple slices of pizza, left over from lunch. Having provisions with me would render it unnecessary to buy snacks from the cinema. Although the buses progressed at their normal plodding rate, I felt more anxious than usual, repeatedly checking my watch. When the 194 bus to Bracknell started pulling in to the Bracknell bus station, I looked through the windows, to see if the Slough bus was there. It was. Would I be able to make it onto the Slough bus before it pulled away? I willed the 194 driver to hurry up and open the doors.
As the doors opened, I leaped out of the bus I had arrived in. Dashing across the station, avoiding any of the mammoth buses that were in motion, I raced to the 191 to Slough. I made it! I couldn't have asked for a closer connection. However, whenever I have good news, it's usually accompanied by bad, it had started to rain. The rain would slow the traffic even more than usual. People in Britain seem to really have a tough time handling driving in the rain. Even Nando, my racist, Italian housemate, is bothered by driving in the rain. For Pete's sake! It's just a bit of water. My fate was now in the hands of the driver from First buses.
6:30PM came and went and we hadn't arrived at the Slough bus station. When we finally did arrive, I struggled to find the way to the cinema. The mall was partially closed, so instead of cutting through, I had to walk around. I kept hoping the film started late. If it was a normal showing, there would be about ten minutes of ads, followed by about ten minutes of coming attractions. These advanced previews usually don't have all that. Would they even let me in when I arrive late?
Finally, I rushed up to the box office twenty minutes after the screening was supposed to start. The man behind the counter informed me that the show had started already, but didn't object to me entering. I hate missing the beginning of a film, but I'd traveled so far, I might as well see as much as I could. After all, it was free. I don't know how much of the film I actually missed, as I have no idea if they started on time. I did manage to pick up the majority of the story.
"August Rush" is the story of a boy sent to an orphanage, as a baby. His parents are two unmarried, young musicians. The boy ends up on the streets of New York City, learning busking. He is a musical genius and his talent aids in his parents finding him, and each other. Directed by Kirsten Sheriden, the film has somewhat of a "female" feel to it. With a mother's bond with her long lost son triumphing over everything, I get the impression that this is the world the way a lot of women imagine it to be. It's Kirsten's seventh film as a director, although I haven't seen any of her other projects, nor even heard of them. The film is technically competent and the acting good, although some might feel that Robin Williams supporting role was a tad bit over-played. Freddie Highmore, who plays the starring role, is worthy of particular note. It's so hard to find good child actors, but he did an excellent job. I found it an enjoyable film that's suitable for families. It tugs at the heartstrings a bit and it may be slightly cheesy, but all in all, a nice story, well presented. The soundtrack is also quite good.

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