Me: What are you doing?
Her: Watching your favorite movie.
Me: What's my favorite movie?
Her: A Knight's Tale.
Me: Oh. That one. It's not my favorite, I just mention it to you more than others 'cause I know you have an aversion to pseudo-period pieces in which they play modern music. Plus it's great fun to watch.
Her: Well it just came on and I'm gonna' give it a shot.
So we talked through some key parts where they're setting up elements of the plot, and exchanging fine, witty banter. Eventually, I tell her to call me two commercial breaks from now and tell me what she thinks. And I go off to finish running my errand. Ages and ages later, I call her back, since the phone hasn't rung yet.
Me: Is there a commercial break yet?
Her: Yes, but just the first one. You told me to call you during the second.
Me: Oh. Whatever. That's too long. What do you think?
Her: It's cool. I'm suspending judgement. Remember the last time we had this kind of conversation I was freshly out of grad school and as a History major it's hard to see Hollywood tweak with reality.
Me: I know. But try to just enjoy it and not overanalyze.
Her: I am.
We hang up. She continues watching the movie, I continue with the tasks of my day. Much, much later, after the movie's finished, she calls again.
Her: Here's the thing. There are a few things it's hard to get past.
Me: Like what.
Her: Like if the bad guy really did talk to her dad about marrying her, and the times are as oppressive as that, then she's not likely to be traipsing around the country hooking up with the dude she chooses.
Me: It could happen.
Her: No. Either one way or the other. Not both. Either she's in a society that's oppressive to women and they don't get to choose their partners, or she's not.
Me: Where's your suspension of disbelief?
Her: It's hard. And Chaucer. It's hard to watch that guy who's in all those scary movies play Chaucer.
Me: It's the first one I'd seen him in so I don't have those preconceptions.
Her: And they didn't do Chaucer anything close to justice. Did you ever read Chaucer?
Me: Just a little. But wasn't he funny? And is it the acting credibility you have trouble with, or the writing?
Her: The writing, definitely. And I don't blame them. I mean, nobody can touch Chaucer. They couldn't have possibly done him justice.
Me: I thought you liked the movie.
Her: Actually I did. It was fun. And I can even sort of get my brain around a woman blacksmith since her dead husband taught her.
Me: Exactly! What about the music? I know that was hard for you in the Shakespeare movie.
Her: I didn't mind this time so much. Especially when you knew they weren't really supposed to be hearing our modern music.
Me: But they were dancing to it.
Her: Uh, yea. But not really. I mean, they could just have been dancing and we heard our music. Oh. And I had a hard time with period piece chick's uber-modern funky way of dressing. That would have never happened.
Me: It could have. I'm glad you liked the movie.
Her: Thank you. Me too!
Me: Oh. And Margot has three seconds less than a master's degree in Shakespearean Literature and she loved the movie!
Her: (Pause...finally...) Okay...
Me: (I'm hearing "I have no response to that.) I wish you could have seen the part where they were setting up Chaucer's character. It helps.
Her: Uh. You were talking.
Hours and hours later, around the time I would have imagined she was putting Mr. Pie to bed, I have another call. But don't pick up as the phone's in another room and I'm busy. The message?
Her, into my voice mail: But I think they did a good job of capturing the way Chaucer connected with the masses. That was part of his genius that our modern society completely overlooks. Nobody gets how great he was that way.
I called her back and we talked a bit more, but mostly about the baby who is suddenly thrilled that 'we are talking instead of falling asleep' and starts making very satisfied, "Seems I win" noises. Thing is: sis and I are never going to see eye to eye on every book or movie or CD. We're not wired identically. But these conversations? To my mind: priceless. Way cooler than both enjoying every bit of entertainment in the exact same way. Infinitely so...