6.01.2014

Quality TV, Guilty Pleasures & Walking Out of a Movie?



Thank you so much for your incredible response to my announcement last week about the new book, At Home With Madame Chic. So many of you preordered the book and sent over encouraging words. Thank you! And I agree with you... November could not come fast enough as I can't wait for you to read it.

This week is a very casual chat discussing quality television (including a guilty pleasure admission of mine) and a story about walking out of a movie. If you are unable to see the video above, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

Madame Chic in the Palisades

The week before last I had the honor of being the guest speaker for Lauren Evans and Susie Gilman's Happiness Series. We gathered in the Pacific Palisades with 40 Madame Chic enthusiasts and had a lively Q&A discussion about how we can live the principles discussed in Lessons from Madame Chic and incorporate them into our lives outside of Paris.


Pictured with Lauren Evans (left) and Susie Gilman (right)


Everyone looked so fabulous! I especially loved the ladies in the Breton striped shirts!


I wore a springy DVF cocktail dress and a turquoise necklace from Bauble Bar. Ten-Item Wardrobe-wise, cocktail dresses are considered extras because you only wear them on special occasions. Remember the ten core items of your wardrobe are clothes that you wear every day. It's important to have clothes for dressier occasions (church, parties, weddings, baby and bridal showers, etc.) It's a good idea to have a capsule collection of dressy occasion appropriate clothing that you can pull from when you have a special event. I can devote a whole blog post and video to this topic if you'd like. Let me know!


Thank you again to Ms. Evans and Ms. Gilman for hosting such a lovely event.


Madame Chic Inspiring Thought



Always use the best things you have. I love this scene from a recent episode of Mr. Selfridge (which is one of the quality shows discussed in this week's video) in which the family use a beautiful set of dishes for their weekday breakfast. Using nice dishes on a daily basis feels decadent and can add a touch of elegance and ritual to your average morning routine.

This week I would love to know... what are your thoughts on the programs discussed in this week's video? Do you have any quality TV or movies to recommend? What about guilty pleasures? Have you ever walked out of a movie?

See you soon!


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28 comments:

Casey said...

I used to watch Downton Abbey, but I stopped at the rape of Anna. I know that stuff happened back then, but I don't think it needs to be on tv. It was the same thing with a torture scene in The Tudors. Loved the show, until.....I know it's not exactly #VulgarityNoMore.
My guilty tv pleasure is teen dramas. I'm of the original BH90210 generation, and I'm still hooked. I've watched The O.C., Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars.
As for walking out of a movie, I don't think I've ever done that. I don't go to the movies a lot - usually it has to be something I really, really, really want to see, because the cost for one person (plus snacks) is so much IMO. Most of the time I have the patience to wait for it to come out on dvd and get in line at the library.

Casey said...

P.S. When is the Wink & Winn giveaway? :)

Denise said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
juliagray19 said...

I love Downton Abbey, but I specifically did not watch that episode and never will. I like Call The Midwife. I like the Hallmark Channel's Cedar Cove. It's got Andie MacDowell and is the only Hallmark channel original series I've watched. If you want to see a good guilty pleasure, reality show, try Judge Judy. She gave an interview with Larry King a few years ago about why her show has been on the air for so many years. She said that people are tired of navel-gazing and lying. She is the highest-paid person on TV.

About Neighbors, I think Zac Efron has a LOT of talent. He's a "triple threat" actor. That movie looked really harsh. I read the review on www.RogerEbert.com and decided not to see it. His site is still up even though he's passed on. I'm looking forward to the musicals coming out: Get On Up (the James Brown biopic), Jersey Boys (based on the Broadway show), and in December Into The Woods.

Denise said...

Enjoyed your video today.
My guilty pleasure is watching "Drop Dead Diva" on Saturday afternoons while my husband is napping. It doesn't have any redeeming value, and I can't imagine the plots; but it is definitely a mindless chick show.

I'd like to suggest a post on training young children to become young ladies and gentlemen. In our busy world today, do people not see the importance of raising well-mannered, poised people? Could it be too much isolation using technology and not enough face-to-face interaction to develop social skills? Just some thoughts.

Off to tend to my container garden and bake muffins for next week's breakfast.

Looking forward to next video.

Casey said...

I didn't know they were making Into The Woods into a movie! I saw that show on PBS eons ago and loved it! It's why I now watch Once Upon A Time (another guilty pleasure), although I got started late and had to play catch-up. Initially I thought OUAT was going to be more like The Charmings, a really bad tv show that lasted 1987-1988.

Christina said...

I am fairly certain I have walked out of a movie before. I know I'm not the target audience for Neighbors. My guilty pleasure is Duck Dynasty. It surprises a lot of people. I read an interview with Justice Scalia in which he mentions watching an episode just to see what it was about. I followed suit...but wasn't able to stop. I find it so funny and clean. I also love Shark Tank and Covert Affairs.

Joy said...

Wow! Your experience with Neighbors sounds exactly like my husband and I at Hangover. It was the scene by the pool with the baby, if you've seen it you probably know what I mean, that pushed us over. That character is established early in the movie as being a predator when they're picking up the friend who is a teacher, and he says something to the effect of not being allowed that close to a school. And then... he does *that* to the baby?? It's so far beyond "crude humor" -- it was offensive, appalling... I can't even find a word for it. I honestly don't know why people weren't boycotting that movie.

We have a pretty wide tolerance for comedy, too. But this was just a whole different thing. I think filmmakers are pushing the envelope to see what people will take, and maybe it's our responsibility to say, "No. This is really too much."

My guilty pleasure is pretty much any HGTV show. I can get so sucked in!! We didn't have cable for about two years till our recent move, and we got it so my husband could watch baseball again. But we mostly watch HGTV. Love it!!!

Rose said...

If you are enjoying Mr Selfridge do look out for "The Paradise", the British series that inspired the genre, that is quality TV. I haven't walked out of a movie of late but I did walk away from a Michael Buble concert in Sydney some years ago. I went to hear his voice and music, I was very disappointed by the continual tasteless "jokes" and insinuations. I do hope Mr Buble has moved on from that, he is a talented singer in his own right.

The Domestic Fringe said...

I've walked out of a movie before too, although I generally don't do that.

I love Hart of Dixie! You're right, it's really the characters - so endearing.

Never watched Mr. Selfridge, but now I must. I loved watched McCloud's Daughters on Netflix. It's a series out of Australia...two sisters running a ranch. I just loved it. If you watch, it's definitely a girls show, so you may not want to torture your husband with it. ;-)
~FringeGirl

Simply Me said...

I have only ever walked out of one film, "Wolf Creek" (my husband's choice). Set in Australia, it is about a serial killer who hates and targets backpackers. It is a really good film, but well known for people walking out. So, if you are up for a challenge.....

Simply Me said...

I do think film and TV producers are increasingly trying to push the boundaries with violent scenes.

As an example, I recently watched the "Roots" and "North and South" series, which were about slavery. They were made in the 70's and 80's and I remember watching them years ago as a child and teen. Yes, some parts were hard to watch, but I didn't feel the need to turn off.

Then, last week, my husband brought home a DVD of "12 years a slave". Made recently, you can see the change in how the producers treat the violent scenes. They seem to go on for just a little bit too long. I imagine the aim is to make you feel really uncomfortable watching it. I was certainly squirming in my seat. Then, when it got to a scene where a young girl was about to be raped, I just couldn't watch any more. The rest of the film remains unwatched.

I know it is a good film, winning many awards, but I find I don't have the stomach for watching violent scenes anymore. I find it stressful, my body tenses up and I often have nightmares after.

I'm not naive, I know horrendous things go on in the world, but I don't want to bring them into my home more that I have to.

As a result, about a year ago, I made a decision to only watch gentler tv and films, much more soothing and relaxing. If my husband wants to watch something violent on TV, I leave him to it.

Once I get home from work and shut my front door I try to create a calm and pleasant environment with gentle music, books and TV.

I am sure other people, my husband included, would think my lifestyle choices a bit old fashioned and twee, but it works for me.

The beauty of the internet is that via blogs such as the Daily Connoisseur, you become aware that there are other people in the world who share similar values and try to live a gentle life.

Simply Me said...

Guilty pleasures - TV Shows
I love survival programmes. Currently in the UK there is a tv show called "The island". Twelve men are left on a harsh tropical island for a month and have to fend for themselves. It is fascinating to watch - it took them two days to make fire and clean drinking water and another week to catch something edible. It really brings home what is important for survival. As hunger kicks in and tempers start to flare, you really see the need for everyone to work together to get the basics of food, shelter and water.

Guilty Pleasures - Minimalist Lifestyle Blogs

As well as blogs such as The Daily Connoisseur, I also love all the minimalist lifestyle blogs. I also love going away camping in my small two man tent with my husband. We take very little with us, just the essentials and I find it really freeing not to be surrounded by so much stuff. What is interesting, is that the minimalist blogs are focused on eliminating non-essentails, but the items that people choose to keep are often very plain, simple and utilitarian.

In contrast, if "Madame Chic" were to declutter, I imagine, if faced with two versions of the same item, eg a mug, one being plain and utilitarian, the other a fine bone china, she would choose the latter and use it every day.

I have just decluttered my kitchen. I had several sets of cutlery, some very plain and utilitarian, one very glamorous and antique looking. In true Madame Chic style, I kept the glamorous set and took the rest to a charity shop.

I did consult with my husband first to make sure he was also ok with my decision. He said fine, but I don't think he has realised yet, that when we go camping next, instead of eating his meals with our usual plastic, utilitrian cutlery, he will using the more glamorous set, as that is all we now have. I can't wait to see his face ..............

Jennifer Branch said...

My guilty pleasure is Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries. Some adult topics, but respectfully done and ugly aspects not drawn out in appropriately. Clever and beautifully produced.
I vote with my dollar on graphic movies. I rarely go now when I used to go all the time. Some images I don't want in my head.
I'd love a series on appropriate dress for more formal occasions. I find myself coming up with "nothing to wear" for mildly dressy events - especially with several in a row.

ilsa said...
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ilsa said...

Hi Jennifer,

I do love your blog!!!

I have enjoyed your first book so much taht I can't wait...

On the topic of todAY .. I have almost stopped watching tv... just old BBC series as Poirot or the new Miss Marple, in my country , Spain, the quality of tv programmes, in spite of the amount of channels it's quite poor... I don't want to spend my precious time watching people shouting at each other,,, and shows like Big brother or similar... I must be gettin older... but my tastes haven't change so much since I was 15!!!!!

A my first husband was english I remember in the 80' in my long summers over there how much I like BBC1&BBC2 ....

On the other hand I would much appreciated a post about capsule wardrobe for special occasions... I always try to think french but does mean LBD's for every occasion.

Thanks in advance for your kindness!!!!

Regards from Spain

Ann G. R. said...

I didn't see Neighbors, but it is funny that you mentioned it because my sister was complaining about it. She likes raunchy, crude, humor and thought it was worthless. She was spreading the word to NOT go see it.

As far as other shows. I don't really have a guilty pleasure…except..the Bachelor or Bachelorette. I don't know why I am sucked into that. But I look forward to it. My husband and I each settle with a glass of wine (because they always seem to be doing that on the show LOL), and we kick back and watch. It is our Monday night 'thing'.

If I can offer a suggestion…watch CALL THE MIDWIFE. It is such a sweet, poignant, heart-felt series with characters I adore. The first one or two, really emphasis the poor living conditions and have some scenes to cringe, but the following shows, don't dwell on it so much. I love that series.

Thanks for sharing.

Stephanie Johnston said...

I saw Neighbors or Bad Neighbours as it's been titled here in Australia (perhaps more apt!). It was just bizarre and I was disappointed because I think Rose Byrne is so talented.

My guilty pleasure is Parenthood! I LOVE that show. I can't get enough of it.

pvhdeerfield said...

At this point in my life I’m afraid I’ve pretty much had it with “edgy” and on the whole I prefer what another poster called more “gentle” programming. I enjoy many British productions shown in the U.S. on PBS, both current programs and reruns: Downton Abbey, Mr. Selfridge, The Paradise, Call the Midwife, Foyle’s War, Doc Martin, Inspector Lewis, etc. I also like some pretty great current American shows like Mad Men, Veep, Silicon Valley (surprisingly funny even though I’m not in the intended demographic), Longmire. All are “scripted” shows and I have little taste for so-called “reality” programs, with the exception of my one guilty pleasure, The Little Couple.

Certainly I’ve walked out on movies, many times. I do hope that when you walk out of a movie, you politely ask the management for a refund; otherwise your “protest” (if that is what you intend it to be) against banality and bad taste is meaningless.

Mass entertainment is a huge business, plain and simple. If movies and television ever were, in the past, “art,” they are no longer. The studios and production companies are, with few exceptions, run by lawyers and accountants and people with MBAs, all worthy and sometimes admirable professions, but seldom entered into by notably creative people. The only thing that matters today is the number of viewers and the amount of money derived from them. Thus, if you watch “Real Housewives” because you want to see what it’s like, you are counted as a viewer. If 100 readers of “Madame Chic” do the same, that’s 100 more viewers, and it matters not whether they like it or despise it. “No one in this world, so far as I know…has ever lost money by underestimating the intelligence of the great masses of the plain people. “—H. L. Mencken

Honestly now, do you really need to watch this type of programming, just to find out what it’s like? You already know what it’s like. So. Don’t. Watch. It.

You are what you eat, what you read, what you watch, what you listen to, what you think about. Live your life admirably, enjoy it, and don’t waste your time fretting about other people’s bad choices. Pour good energy into the universe.

Colorado girl said...

I have been watching the same two TV shows you mentioned, Mr. Selfridge and Heart of Dixie. I really love them both and I don't feel very guilty watching them because they are such wonderful shows! I have watched Heart of Dixie since it first started, but I just started watching Mr. Selfridge in Season 2, so I plan to catch up this summer with Season 1.

I would love you to do a dressy clothes video.

Winnie said...

Recommendations from Winnie the librarian: If you like Downton Abbey and Mr. Selfridge, then you will also enjoy "Upstairs Downstairs" both the new and old versions as well as "The Paradise." Both at Masterpiece Classics and are beautiful just like the others.
I also really enjoy Hart of Dixie and think others might like "Brothers and Sisters" or "Heartland."
My guilty pleasure: any home improvement show--Property Brothers, Love it or List it, and anything about homes. I love seeing how other people live.

Winnie

Nicole H said...

Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries!!!!!

That show is my guilty pleasure. It is so good! Even though it takes place in Australia during the 1920's, Miss Fisher sports a classic parisian bob and that "je ne sais quoi."

Although I have never walked out on a movie, I have at many times began a movie at home with my husband where we decided to turn it off.

Great Post Jennifer! You are always an inspiration!

Julie said...

I have walked out of two movies due to gratuitous violence. Although I felt really self-conscious at first wondering what others would think of me, I realized that they didn't really care. Also, your taking a stand might give others the boost they need to get up and leave as well. And as another person stated, most movie theatres will give you a refund or voucher if you explain why you left.

There's actually a really great passage from the Bible that talks about being careful what goes into your heart and mind.

Proverbs 4:23-27: Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. Keep your mouth free of perversity; keep corrupt talk far from your lips. Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways. Do not turn to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil.

If you want to know more about a movie's violence or crude language as well as its positive elements, check out pluggedin.com which provides a great overview. It might contain spoilers so just give it a quick glance if you don't want to know all the details.

Guilty pleasures are Last Man Standing and Duck Dynasty. And I would love to see your special occasion wardrobe!

Daniella C said...

Oh how I miss Downton! I think i'm going to have to take a look at Mr.Selfridge, since i've heard you mentioned it a few times now. My guilty pleasure is also Hart of Dixie. I. Love. It. Sometimes I just want to chuck my wardrobe and buy 10 new pieces a la Lemon Breeland. I'm currently watching through the 2nd season.

It's funny, I said to my husband the other day, there's just no good movies anymore. A few times we've headed out to go watch something, only to think, meh, and find something else to do. I haven't seen a GREAT movie in a while!

Nana said...

Hi. I found your blog because of your book.
I´ve just finished to read it and i loved every tip you wrote there.
Here in Brazil, probabily it won´t be easier to follow everthing you wrote, but i´ll try to be more mysterious :)
Kisses and God bless you.
Nana
procurandoamigosvirtuais.blogspot.com.br

Magdalena Jodko said...

Hi,

I found your blog beacause of the book.
You have a great taste and I like your sense of humour.

My guilty pleasures: Desperate Housewives. I love that all those characters are so realistic and I found a little bit of myself in each of ladies :) I think that it is so important to have a good girls friends around yourself - it makes ife easier.
Look here: https://scontent-a-fra.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xfa1/t1.0-9/1375675_586196798084745_1815567500_n.jpg
There is a funny picture about it:
The polish text below means:
Little reminder:
Probably your girlfriends will live longer than your husband so try to have good (girlfriends) around you.

Cynthia Lambert said...

I loved Mr. Selfridge! Such an enjoyable series. I love the sets and costumes and Mr. Selfridge is such a good man. Ok, he was a womanizer but he has changed his ways.
The Bachlor/Bachlorette series is my guilty pleasure. I really enjoy the different locations this series provides.

Lex said...

I would love to see a video on your dressy occasion appropriate clothing! Your 10 item wardrobe posts are my absolute favourite.

 
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