"In cooking, as in all the arts, simplicity is a sign of perfection." - Curnonsky

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Dinner and a DVD: From Hell

I made this dish last night for the Yoga Babes. Chow mein noodles provide the nice crunch in this hearty dish.

Beef 'n' Rice Bake

1 lb ground beef
3 celery ribs, thinly sliced
Onion, chopped
2 cups cooked rice
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
1/2 cup chopped sweet red pepper
1 jar (4 1/2 oz) sliced mushrooms, drained
1/2 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 can (3 oz) chow mein noodles

Cook beef, celery and onion until the meat is browned and vegetables are tender; drain. Stir in rice, peppers, mushrooms, soy sauce, butter and brown sugar; heat through. Transfer to a greased baking dish. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes. sprinkle with chow mein noodles. Bake, uncovered, 5-10 minutes longer or until the noodles are crisp.

Featured Attraction: From Hell

"One day, men will look back and say that I gave birth to the twentieth century," says Jack The Ripper.

I have always been fascinated by the story of Jack the Ripper, but surprisingly this was my first film based on the story. From Hell is an outstanding mystery and a dark, moody film. This is the type of film that will stick in my mind days after seeing it. I'll have the image of old Whitechaple in my head. I'll have the terrific murder scenes stuck in my head, but most of all I'll have the image of Jack the Ripper in my head. From Hell disturbed me. It even scared me, and a few scenes I was a little bored (action fans will not enjoy this film). From Hell is certainly not for everyone, but it certainly was for me.

Johnny Depp is fantastic. He is one of my favorite actors, and certainly delivers the goods in From Hell. His performance is perfect, and one of his best. Heather Graham also does a fine job in From Hell. I was surprised with her performance. I'll admit, when I saw she was in the film, I was worried. I mean who doesn't get worried when they find out the same actress who was in Austin Powers 2 is going to be in a Jack the Ripper film. But she did surprise me, although I still think she could have done better.

The murder mystery is also great. It keeps you guessing the whole way through (I was not successful in guessing who Jack was), and when the killer is revealed, it all makes sense.

And let me tell you, From Hell is violent! Although not as gory as I expected it to be, it still made me cringe (that throat slash!). A lot of the violence takes place off screen, which let my imagination run wild, and it did just that (My head is filled with tons of gory images).

Sure the film is a little slow moving, but how fast can a murder mystery movie be? But at the same time, I was completely absorbed in the film.

A truly frightening, yet enjoyable movie.

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