I spent the weekend convalescing after a minor out-patient procedure on Friday. Since the doctor performing the deed was the one who first held each of my newborn Littles I needn’t explain to him that ‘take it easy and rest this weekend’ might not go off as smoothly as he directed.
I did my best. Secretly knowing that neither my doctor nor my mother would approve of my definition of ‘rest’.
One of the most extravagant indulgences of the weekend was the hour and a half I laid in bed watching Babette’s Feast. It’s been ages since I’ve seem the film, but when asked I always include it on my list of favorite movies.
With the Oscar’s fresh on our minds from last night, it’s worth remembering the Academy bestowed the honor of Best Foreign Film (Denmark) to Babette’s Feast in 1988. From the IMBd website a synopsis of the film:
This delicately told and moving story about the two devout daughters of a Danish Lutheran minister and their French servant is one of the finest European films of the 1980s. Set in a small, remote, austere Danish seaside town in the mid-19th century, the daughters devote their lives to continuing the work of their father in service of God, and in care for their needy townspeople. One of the daughters had turned down a promising opera career — and the love of her French voice coach (a famous opera singer himself) — to remain with her father and the town. Many years later the French singer sends a woman (Babette) — who had lost her family in an outbreak of civil war — to live with the sisters. She turns out to be an excellent cook, housekeeper and a shrewd shopper. The story culminates in a sumptuous feast prepared by Babette coinciding with a memorial to the reverend minister’s 100th birthday. This delicious screenplay was adapted from the Isak Denisson (pen name for Karen Blixen) short story originally published in the Ladies Home Journal.
The film was just what I needed. The pace is slow and reflective. If you are a fan of Merchant Ivory films you will enjoy the sensory journey of Babette’s Feast. The subtle comedy and strong messages ring clear for such a quiet film. It also made me want to rent Waking Ned Divine again…another brilliant foreign film if you find yourself convalescing, or just in need of a cheap European get-away.
I also re-read The China Study this weekend. Ouch. It was just as shocking the second time. I’m still processing Dr. Campbell’s claims, but so wish I could flip a switch to transition to a plant-based, whole foods diet. Where’s that easy button?
Have y’all seen Babette’s Feast? Or read The China Study? Or am I alone on this island? 😉