Mountain Views News     Logo: MVNews     Saturday, December 29, 2012

MVNews this week:  Page 11



 Mountain Views News Saturday, December 29, 2012 




Book Reviews by Jasmine Kelsey Williams 

Review By Sean Kayden



By Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen & Amy Newmark 

 With Christmas come and gone, we now look to the new 
year and this next selection should definitely help you to get 
into the positive mindset that comes along with the start of a 
new year. 'Chicken Soup for the Soul: Think Positive' will do 
just this, by bringing forth over 101 stories that convey the 
importance of counting your blessings, keeping a positive 
attitude, and always trying to find a way to make the best 
out of a negative situation. Each story contains a different 
category that addresses how different individuals experience 
the trials and triumphs that life throws at them: overcoming 
adversity, health challenges, silver linings, and moving forward, 
just to name a few. 

 With a foreward from Deborah Norville and copyrighted in 
2010, 'Chicken Soup for the Soul: Think Positive' is not just 
a new read, but one that should bring out the optimism in 
readers of all ages and to make them appreciate all that they 
have in thier lives. These stories will prove even more beneficial 
to one's well-being and attitude if any of the stories 
help to strike a chord in their perspectives and as a result, 
will be able to sympathize with the individuals from these 
stories. Each individual from this edition of 'Chicken Soup for the Soul' recounts their experience 
with clear and vivid detail, with their exact words and thoughts being expressed 
for the reader (and all the world) to know. It is not just their details on a negative situation 
or circumstance, but also if said situation or circumstance occurred to them directly; one 
example is from Saralee Perel who recounts her experiences of living with paralysis in her 
legs in "Walking Through My Paralysis", which speaks volumes to the reader of how one can 
overcome the obstacles of a medical condition. 

 'Chicken Soup for the Soul: Think Positive' is the perfect book for anyone , who is a fan 
of the Chicken Soup series or for those who need a positive pick-me-up and for those who 
enjoy a daily reminder of learning to count your blessings and appreciating the gift of your 
life, whatever that may come your way.

“Flight,” the latest film from Denzel Washington starts off riding high. As the 
journey continues, however, it takes a slow nosedive barely lifting itself up before 
a total crash landing. Washington stars as Whip Whitaker, a commercial airline 
pilot who is an alcoholic. He’s a pretty selfish guy that has an ex-wife and a son he 
rarely sees. The night before the flight, Whip consumed what appeared to be a considerable amount of 
alcohol. He proceeded the following morning by doing a line of coke to help him sober up. Despite what 
should have been an impaired physicality, Whip was seemingly okay to pilot the plane. He even gets 
through a heavy storm under severe turbulence with a sense of ease and composure, while reassuring 
his passengers not to worry acting as if everything is now copacetic (although he clandestinely pours 
two mini vodka bottles into his bottle of orange juice). He additionally informs the passengers there 
will be no meals or bottle service on the flight. Long story short, there is a malfunction with the engine, 
among other parts of the plane. This leads Whip to do whatever it takes to try to land this thing, but as 
his options start to run out quickly, he has no choice but to turn the plane upside down to slow it down. 

Acknowledging the fact the plane was going to 
crash, Whip does everything in his power to keep 
it from nose-diving and possibly killing everyone 
on board. When the dust settles, the plane goes 
down, but only 6 out of the 102 passengers died. 
Whip is deemed a hero, but even heroes have fatal 
flaws. After going to a remote getaway on his farm, 
Whip empties all his alcoholic bottles and cans 
stored there. It looked like he was about to have a 
clean slate. However, when the toxicology report comes back, alcohol and substances were found in his 
blood. Whip becomes knowledgeable of the fact that there will be an investigation into the crash, which 
may cause severe implications for him. From there, Whip returns to the dark side. 

The second act is dedicated to clearing Whip’s name of any liability for the crash. Whip knows he’s the 
only one who could have landed that plane and in doing so, only a few died while a large number did 
miraculously survive. Don Cheadle plays Hugh Lang, the appointed attorney for Whip. Actor Bruce 
Greenwood is Charlie Anderson, a friend and colleague of Whip, who is on the board of the union for 
commercial airline pilots. These two men are trying help Whip, but he continues to be a problem. Along 
the way, Whip starts an unlikely romantic relationship with Nicole, a woman he met at the hospital. 
She is a heroin addict trying to sober up. Despite her breakthrough in that department, Whip doesn’t 
follow her lead and refuses to get any help. Fearful she’ll start to use drugs again, she leaves Whip. The 
entire second act is long and turns into a series of scenes of watching Whip become worse with his 
alcoholism. He never can man up to anything and tries to manipulate people in helping him clear his 
name since he has an upcoming meeting with the NTSB (National Transportation Safety Board). 

Washington’s performance is strong and is easily one of the most complex roles he’s tackled in years. 
Unfortunately, the supporting cast doesn’t get a whole lot to work with. They’re all fine, but the juiciest 
role is the one for the protagonist. John Goodman shows up in a few scenes and steals the show. He 
brings an unexpectedly humorous side to a rather ominous story. There’s also a terrifically written 
scene where Whip, Nicole and a cancer ward patient at the hospital share a late night smoke in the 
stairway talking about life, cancer, smokes and God. It’s a rather moving and profound scene, but sadly 
no scene after that comes close to being on par. The thing with Flight is how straightforward it is. 

As a viewer, you may sympathize for Whip but that feeling wears thin. In the end, he has to make a 
decision and you’re not sure how it’s going to play out. I did like the ending, especially the very last 
sequence with Whip and his estranged son finally making amends. Overall, Flight tackles the themes 
of alcoholism and obsession. It does a somewhat commendable job, but nothing new or insightful was 
revealed about the “disease.” With a protagonist that becomes increasingly more and more difficult 
to root for, “Flight” soars lower than initially intended and doesn’t recuperate quickly enough for a 
smooth finish. You’re in for a jarring trip that’s acceptable this time, but you’re unlikely inclined to 
come back to visit a second time around. 

Grade: 3 out of 5




Take a breath. Fill your lungs with a deep inhale, hold your breath for a few 
seconds. Then, slowly, mindfully, exhale. There you have it: Pranayama, 
literally, breath control. Prana means life force energy and ayama means to extend or draw out.

Breathing is a simple act that we do without thinking about it. We breathe because we are alive, and 
we’re alive because we breathe. Therefore, pranayama is life. 

In your yoga class, your teacher will explain for you the various breathing exercises that are an integral 
part of your yoga practice. There’s Ujjayi, the ocean breath, and that one will see you through 
a lot of poses. There’s Kapalabhati, the fire breath and you’ll love it. There’s Dirga, the three-part 
breath, soothing and relaxing. And still more...

Why do we need breathing exercises with fancy, exotic names? Because we don’t pay enough attention 
to our breath. We hold it, we shorten it, we run out of it, caught up as we are in our ever-
increasing pace of life. So, come to a yoga class. Sit down on your mat, close your eyes for a moment, 
and take a deep breath in. Do you feel it? Your life. Your breath. Pranayama.

Namasté, René