Valentine’s Day 2006 Movie Recommendations

One of the best things to do is get together with your girlfriend or boyfriend and watch a movie. DVDs are just so commonplace and as you know you can get those pirate copies even while movies are in cinemas. I personally prefer watching them at the cinema the first time around. As Valentine’s Day is approaching I recommend some of my favourite romantic movies from the last two years…

1. 50 First Dates (2004)

50 First Dates With generous amounts of good luck and good timing, 50 First Dates set an all-time box-office record for the opening weekend of a romantic comedy; whether it deserved such a bonanza is another issue altogether. It’s a sweet-natured vehicle for sweet-natured stars Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore, and their track record with The Wedding Singer no doubt factors in its lowbrow appeal. But while the well-matched lovebirds wrestle with a gimmicky plot (she has no short-term memory, so he has to treat every encounter as their first), director Peter Segal (who directed Sandler in Anger Management) ignores the intriguing potential of their predicament (think Memento meets Groundhog Day) and peppers the proceedings with the kind of juvenile humor that Sandler fans have come to expect. The movie sneaks in a few heartfelt moments amidst its inviting Hawaiian locations, and that trained walrus is charmingly impressive, but you can’t quite shake the feeling that too many good opportunities were squandered in favor of easy laughs. Like Barrymore’s character, you might find yourself forgetting this movie shortly after you’ve seen it.

2. The Notebook (2004)

When you consider that old-fashioned tearjerkers are an endangered species in Hollywood, a movie like The Notebook can be embraced without apology. Yes, it’s syrupy sweet and clogged with clichés, and one can only marvel at the irony of Nick Cassavetes directing a weeper that his late father John–whose own films were devoid of saccharine sentiment–would have sneered at. Still, this touchingly impassioned and great-looking adaptation of the popular Nicholas Sparks novel has much to recommend, including appealing young costars (Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams) and appealing old costars (James Garner and Gena Rowlands, the director’s mother) playing the same loving couple in (respectively) early 1940s and present-day North Carolina. He was poor, she was rich, and you can guess the rest; decades later, he’s unabashedly devoted, and she’s drifting into the memory-loss of senile dementia. How their love endured is the story preserved in the titular notebook that he reads to her in their twilight years. The movie’s open to ridicule, but as a delicate tearjerker it works just fine. Message in a Bottle and A Walk to Remember were also based on Sparks novels, suggesting a triple-feature that hopeless romantics will cherish.

3. Bride and Prejudice (2004)

Bride and PrejudiceThe exotic sounds, vibrant colors, and ecstatic dancing of Bollywood collide with the cunning storytelling of Jane Austen in Bride & Prejudice (from the writer/director of previous East/West hybrid Bend It Like Beckham). When smart, outspoken Lalita Bakshi (Indian beauty Aishwarya Rai) meets Will Darcy (Martin Henderson, The Ring), she finds this American businessman arrogant and conceited–but because his best friend is falling in love with her sister, Lalita agrees to travel around India with Darcy. On the trip, a childhood friend of Darcy’s named Johnny (Daniel Gillies, Spider-Man 2) both tickles Lalita’s fancy and confirms her worst suspicions about Darcy. But as events unfold, Lalita wonders if she hasn’t misjudged Darcy–and Johnny. Austen fans will be find much to criticize; Bride & Prejudice transplants the basic plot of Pride & Prejudice to modern India, but not much of Austen’s sly wit or her insights about character and society have survived the translation. Henderson, though handsome, lacks the intimidating charisma of previous Mr. Darcys (including Laurence Olivier and Colin Firth). Thank goodness for the delightful Rai, here making her first all-English-language movie. She commands the screen like a true star (unsurprisingly, she’s hugely popular in India, and previously starred in a more homegrown Austen adaptation: I Have Found It, based on Sense & Sensibility). For Western audiences unfamiliar with the freewheeling exuberance of Indian movies–wild musical numbers can break out at almost any moment–Bride & Prejudice offers an engaging taste of this fantastic cinematic style.

4. Spanglish (2004)

SpanglishAnyone familiar with writer/director James L. Brooks (As Good As It Gets) knows the man has a real feel for interesting women and a disarming way with a one-liner. The main women in Spanglish are Deborah Clasky (Téa Leoni), a moneyed SoCal mom, and non-English speaking Flor Moreno (Paz Vega), the beautiful Latina whom Deborah hires as a housekeeper. The one-liners, some of them amusing, are everywhere. Brooks provides an intriguing set-up for the two women to butt heads–Deborah’s pudgy daughter Bernice (Sarah Steele) needs the affection at which Flor excels, while Flor’s clever, bi-lingual daughter Cristina (Shelbie Bruce) is enamored of the financial advantages Deborah can provide–then proceeds to make Deborah so hatefully ignorant you can’t imagine why her neuroses are the main thrust of the film. And Deborah’s celebrated chef husband John (Adam Sandler, way over his head) is such a perfect parent he doesn’t seem human–what happened to the Brooks who had Terms of Endearment mom Debra Winger turn to her scowling little boy and grunt “Don’t make me hit you in the street”? Cloris Leachman has a nifty supporting role as Deborah’s boozy, ex-jazz singer mother, but it’s only one offbeat chord in an earnest film that hits all the wrong notes.

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Meeting You Soul Mate

s?ul ma?es parties

 

The Soul Mates Dinner Parties organised by Lara Suddes of MostInnerMost is absolutely the best place to meet mature, confident, spiritually minded women. The sophistication and the esoteric interests is enhanced by the vibey atmosphere. I arrived before 7pm at Salina’s Restaurant, Pineslopes Centre, Corner Witkoppen & The Straight, Fourways (behind Montecasino).

There must have been about three or four or more women for every one guy. Now all the men who avoid these types of events are idiots. You’re shy and afraid of being rejected? Well maybe you should get your ass to the next Soul Mates party.

As the ladies arrived I was wondering when the first man would be there. Well Omar, a very confident and humorous gentlemen arrived and decidedly plunked himself down next to two ladies. The registration desk was swamped by all the excited women and few men who arrived. Lara had asked me to give a short talk about dating but that never happened. So many of the women I met were really nice.

The ones who stand out is Marla, from Brazil now living in South Africa for several years, and Aviva from London also been in Joburg for a while. Not to speak to the many, many others who were all very confident, and very sexy in a spiritual way…

There was certainly a lot of opportunity to speak to them and get inside their intuitive minds. Of all the kinds of parties I’ve been to for dating or matchmaking this is by far the better to find quality women rather than pure quantity. Although that is the case while it remains a secrets hunting ground for alpha males like myself…

The next Soul Mates Party is Saturday 25 March 2006, 7pm. Salina’s Restaurant Pineslopes Centre, Corner Witkoppen & The Straight, Fourways (behind Montecasino). The cost is R50 and you can book here or call Lara Suddes on 083-212-6462.

Also remember to visit the best Spirtual website in South Africa, MostInnerMost.com

 

The Way of the Superior Man by David Deida

“The Way of the Superior Man” is a revolutionary new look at the challenges facing the contemporary male. David Deida encourages men to live a full life and to find their deepest purpose so they can give their deepest gifts to the world. After reading this book your view of the world might change.

You will hear new meanings in songs, view your sexual relationship with much more insight and start to unravel the tangled web of life. Suddenly spirituality and sexuality merge into an ecstatic experience.

This is more about living the poetic life than being trapped and tangled in a web of your own making. It is about breaking free and overcoming the challenges of human existence. This book mainly focuses on how men deal with their career/life purpose and women. As a woman, you might be surprised when you discover which one men find to be the most important.

The Way of the Superior Man: A Spiritual Guide to Mastering the Challenges of Women, Work, and Sexual Desire If you are a woman, presently living with a man who has lost his “deepest purpose,” then this book will explain why a man’s view of his “purpose” can make life heaven or hell. After reading this book you will see why it is of ultimate importance even in an unpredictable world. I agree with the author completely on this issue. A man cannot love a woman fully unless he is happy with who he is and where he is going.

If you are a man living with a woman who is not filled with sexual energy and vitality and who seems depressed, edgy and not that interested in sex, then this book gives insight into the mysteries of a woman’s heart and soul. It explains what turns a woman on in the depths of her being and how a man can take her into the realm of sexual ecstasy.

Not only does David Deida unravel the mysteries of women, he has a profound and ancient knowledge of how men function on their deepest levels. He answers so many questions, I truly felt more enlightened in regards to relationship and life issues.

  • What is a man’s highest priority?
  • When should you start to enjoy your life? Is the time now?
  • Are you willing to do what it takes to stay on the edge?
  • How can fear become your friend?
  • Why you should allow yourself time to discover “the unknowing.”
  • How a period of unknowingness can lead to knowing your purpose.
  • What makes a man more attractive to a woman?
  • Why do women love it when a man takes charge on a date?
  • Why do women refuse to surrender? What does surrender really mean?
  • Is she just a woman to you? Or do you want to change her?

David talks about not changing a woman, but loving her. This is so true. I also believe a woman is like a flower who can be encouraged to bloom more fully under the care of a loving man. Whether than means he has to use humor or spend more time during sex, it all counts.

I can imagine David Deida singing: “She’s Always a Woman to Me” although I think he’d change the words because he seems to know the secrets to getting back to the garden of Eden. Women want a man who is sensitive, spontaneous and spiritually alive. A man who can lead a woman into deep intimacy is unimaginably sexy.

If the man she is with is not helping a her to “bloom,” she will either wither, find inner strength or find another man to lead her to sexual ecstasy. I do think some of his explanations about sex border on “orgasm as a tool to attaining enlightenment.”

The type of sex he seems to be talking about is “sacred sex” and is superior to ordinary sex because he describes men achieving an almost oneness with God through having sex with a woman. This seems to be more in line with “Tantra” which has its roots in Tibetan Buddhist spirituality.

While ordinary sex is more mechanical and still pleasurable, he is talking about a rapturous spiritual experience in which the body, mind, heart and soul experience bliss. It is called “divine ecstasy” where the boundaries and ego dissolve. Tantric Sex includes long periods of total devotion and could involve sacred rituals, so you may or may not wish to participate in the more “spiritual” aspects depending on you religion. You almost need to go away for the weekend to find the time.

So, when David talks about spending three hours with your lover, he isn’t kidding. While many philosophies focus on the denial of our senses, this book encourages the full engagement of all the senses. There is an awareness of Tantric Sex, but no deep explanations.

David Deida does show a deep understanding of Tantra in general as he seems to embrace life with a deep spiritual understanding and seems to see living as an ancient art in which you live in harmony with existence.

I think the main goal in this book is to encourage men to see that they can control their lives and that in fact, women want them to be in control. Confidence is of course very sexy. This book is especially for men with a masculine sexual essence who want to deepen their life experience with a lover who has a very feminine sexual essence.

I have found all of David Deida’s books to be intellectually appealing and also sexy on a primal level. I think you can decide what you want to add to your life and there is so much truth in regards to the male/female interaction as a dance or a game. Love becomes the ultimate pleasure. Life becomes a path into an open sky.

Also Highly Recommended (especially for women):

 

Couples online dating website review

Two’s company, three’s a crowd. Truer words have never been spoken. Do you have a chronically single friend that you, grudgingly, bring along to your dates? Are you that friend? If so, you will find a solution for this at Couples. An eye-catching online dating website for South Africans – www.couples.co.za – is the destination. If you have any misconceptions about online dating services, such as “only desperate PC geeks date online”, then leave them at the door, because this website offers you thousands of funky men and women to chat up. The website’s auto matching system uses your age, religion and cultural factors with which to create your profile. Using this profile, potential matches are recommended to you.

This website now has over 20,000 users and is one of the cheapest websites around. A six month subscription will cost you R100 while a 12 month subscription will only cost R150. This is exceptionally great value for money if you think about how much you typically spend on a weekend out on the town.

One thing I do not like about Couples is that I cannot filter on some criteria. For example on most other webistes I can filter out women with children or I can select with check boxes multiple races. Not with Couples. The search and matchmaking system is very basic in this regard.

 

Another Year of Explosive Growth for Online Dating in South Africa

Black Online Dating Users Increased by 64% in 2005

The number of Black users of online dating services increased to 18% of total users in 2005, up from 11% in 2004. This represents a 64% year-on-year increase and is one of the key findings from a new research report, The NETucation Report – Online Dating in South Africa 2006, released today. “New partnerships by market leader DatingBuzz with media companies like Metro FM and Sowetan has allowed the online dating market to tap into new sources for potential new users,” says Ramon Thomas, Managing Director of NETucation, the leading internet research company in South Africa.

“The key indicator of growth in this industry is the number of new competitors. There are 10 new online dating websites that launched during last year,” Thomas explains.

This new study is the result of a survey conducted in August 2005. 5024 respondents completed a 33-page questionnaire on how the Internet is impacting on their sexual behavior. Most of these users are actively meeting and dating men and women found on more then 30 Internet and Web/ SMS-based dating services.

“The total number of profiles across all websites has exploded to 362 675 at the end of 2005,” says Thomas. “However, the actual number of unique users are 230 000 because of an overlap of users. Many people are hedging their bets by signing up to multiple websites, sometimes as many as three.”

Some of the key findings form this survey include:

  • Men younger than 30 outnumber women in the same age group; however, in the age group 30-60 women outnumber men
  • More women than men are signing up for online dating
  • Homosexual users have up to six times more internet-sourced sexual encounters then heterosexuals users.
  • On average, male users have three times as many internet-sourced sexual encounters then women users.

The Top 10 Online Dating Websites, based on use by South Africans respondents, are as follows:

  1. DatingBuzz
  2. Lovemail
  3. Gaydar
  4. Couples
  5. MSN Match
  6. Galaxy Singles
  7. Erotic Personals
  8. Matchmaker
  9. SexyIntro.com
  10. AllSingles

MEDIA CONTACTS

Ramon Thomas, Managing Director, NETucation