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Sunday, July 1, 2007

Prague to Minneapolis...

Arrived back in Minnesota this afternoon. The flights were Prague to Amsterdam and then Amsterdam right into Minneapolis. Both were uneventful - which is exactly what you are looking for. If you have an "exciting" flight it means that something bad happened.

I used Northwest frequent flyer miles (100,000 of them) so it didn't cost anything. The flight from Amsterdam to Minneapolis is long - over 8 hours - but the new Airbus 330s have the in-seat entertainment systems so you can watch movies from a library, listen to hundreds of songs, or play games. It really helps the time go by more quickly.

I watched three movies - Wild Hoggs, Lifeboat and Toy Story 2. Wild Hoggs was OK. I was hoping for better with Travolta, Tim Allen and William H. Macy. At the end when it looks like the good guys are going down to defeat, there is a deus ex machina that comes in and saves the day. Seriously, it's a character that is not seen, and is barely mentioned, who shows up at the end and sets things right. Just like in the ancient Greek plays. 2 out of 4 stars.

Next was the old Hitchcock thriller, Lifeboat. It's the story of civilian survivors after a U-boat sinks there ship during WWII. The entire movie takes place in the lifeboatand I was wondering how Hitchcock would appear - he makes a cameo appearance in all of his movies. It turns out that one of the characters has a newspaper and Hitch shows up as teh "before" picture in a diet ad. Very clever. I thought I would like this movie more, being a classic and all. It seemed to me that it would be a better play since the action takes place in a single setting. The only real tension involves the German U-boat captain who is brought into the lifeboat after it is sunk. Originally, only one of the 7 or so surviviors wants to eliminate him on the spot while the others treat him civilly and even eventually put him in charge. In the end, htough, he is found to have been very deceiving (he had a compass, water and food without informing the others, and directly responsible for the murder of one of the company). He is set upon by everyone and basically beaten to death and/or drowned (even the more pacifist among them join in the beating).

I got about half way through Toy Story 2 before the entertainment system was turned off in preparation for landing. It's a good story and who can help but liking Hanks and Tim Allen?

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