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Hollywood

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Death Wish

No, I don’t have one.

I posted the video below on my You Tube area yesterday.  Then, it occurred not everyone reads the entire blog, or views the videos.

I have posted previously about how Hollywood has officially run out of ideas.  And my general loathing of remakes.

I did like the original film, and even more the book by Brian Garfield.  Charles Bronson as Paul Kersey?  Sure.

Bruce Willis in the remake?  Double-sure!

There is some hub-bub on the Internet regarding this film. (‘vigilante’ stuff, aside)  It seems some Black and liberal folks are offended the main character would hide his identity with a hoodie(!?)

Apparently, they are only to be used by Black criminals!?

Sigh.

(Just to be annoying, I marked vigilante in this blog posts categories and tags.  After all, that is the theme of both films.  Of course, we educated folk understand to be a vigilante, one must be a member of a committee of vigilance, that is a group member.  There is no such thing as a single vigilante, Bernie Goetz (as portrayed in the press) notwithstanding!)  😛

That 70’s Show, Now In Colorado?!

You guys know I love my TV and movies.

(I don’t get out much)

And we’ve been binge-watching wherever we can, awaiting the ‘new’ season to rear it’s ugly head.  Netflix and Amazon Prime are our friends!

We recently ran across The Ranch, on Netflix.

Not a great effort, perhaps, but a good one.

Danny Masterson (Hyde from That 70’s Show) and Ashton Kutcher (Kelso, from the same) star.  With the surprising additions of Sam Elliott (for the ladies!) and Debra Winger (in case you wondered what ever happened to her!)

Prodigal son returns to the ranch, after failing at semi-professional football, to be with his younger brother and curmudgeonly father (think Red Foreman), who need help running it.

But haven’t asked…

Winger is divorced from the curmudgeon and runs a local bar – but they still hook up every so often.  After a fight.

Small Colorado Western town hi-jinks ensue.

As it’s on Netflix, there is coarse language and jokes of a sexual nature.  And, for those w/o Netflix, it’s on You Tube!

Not exactly drawing room comedy, or high drama, but kinda fun.

The Wire 

As recounted here in previous episodes, I LIKE movies and TV.

Also recounted, I don’t always access current stuff, i.e I didn’t watch Star Trek (TOS) in prime time; the mini-series John Adams until years after the fact.

So it was with The Wire. Dave (the mechanic) recommended it highly.  I don’t think I had HBO when it was first broadcast…

We found ourselves ‘between seasons’ on regular, commercial television.  And had been re-running shows we liked (ranging from Friends to Person-of-Interest) until we started mumbling the dialog under our breath.

Thank God for ‘The Hopper™’!

It was time for something new, to us at least.

And we remembered The Wire

Five years, sixty episodes. Gritty inner city drama about the workings of the police, unions, organized crime and politics.

Sax and violins galore.

With no censor (it was HBO, after all)!

If I had $1 for every time I heard the word M…..F…..

Well, you get the idea.

Well cast and acted. A tight script which kept you guessing.  Some good guys who were bad – some misguided.  Some bad guys trying to be good. Others just evil.

The Internet tells us many of the background cast we actual people from the street.  I’m certain this lowered production costs, but also added to the realism.

I recommend it.  But make certain the children are asleep in their beds.

In another State.

Lest they listen and start repeating M…..F……

Or the ubiquitous ‘N’ word!

MST3K

(that’s GEEK for Mystery Science Theater 3000!)  😅

As most of you know, I love TV and movies.  And, being disabled (with limited funds), I am constantly on the prowl for something different to watch.

(For something to do besides hang out on the Internet.)

Some years ago, I heard about MST3K, and was lucky enough to have access to it.

THE PREMISE (wikilink)

Hard to imagine this came about from a tight crew of messed up college guys talking back to the TV while watching cheesy movies!

Now, in it’s (third?) incarnation on Netflix.

A (short) example:

If your geeky, and in need of a good guffaw, I highly recommend it.

It is NOT for the serious!  😛

 

George Romero & Martin Landau RIP 

It’s sad when a purveyor of a childhood memory is taken.

Sadder still when two are.

I’ve never been a big horror movie fan, falling for the less obvious thriller genre. But I recognize talent when I see it.

1968’s Night of the Living Dead began resurgence of horror films, many of whom were directed yet again by Mr. Romero.

The man had talent and style.

Martin Landau was a character acting fixture in my childhood, even when I didn’t know him by name. 

The Untouchables, Bonanza, The Twilight Zone, I Spy, Mission Impossible (on television) and North By Northwest and Ed Wood (in the movies).

And many other works…

I was never a Space 1999 fan, though…

He could play both charming and lethal.

I shall miss him

RIP Gentlemen 

Spoiler Alert!

As I grew up doing magic (eventually becoming semi-pro in my teens), I know many secrets – even if I cannot perform them personally.  😛

And, sadly, knowledge kinda ruins watching other magicians!  I’m looking for the gimmick, misdirection, the gaffe, the secret – other than just enjoying the performance for entertainment sake.

It takes an unusual talent to keep me interested in the actual performance.

I am also an AZDPS certified/NRA trained instructor.  And have trained people professionally in safe gun-handling and proper techniques.  I also shot in IPSC competition for a short time.

The point being, while I’m no big-time trainer/shooter, I have been around.

And, this has spoiled many TV shows and movies for me.

It’s hard for me to suspend my disbelief when I see a magician perform poorly (and not on purpose for comedy, ala Carl Balantine!)

The same thing applies to gun handling from Hollywood.

In recent memory, the TV show 24, with the counter-terrorist expert Jack Bauer (played by Kiefer Sutherland) holding his pistol as a cup-and-saucer.  Obviously, the set firearms trainer didn’t bother, or the actor didn’t care!

To be fair, Hollywood has generally improved in this area – Michael Mann with Miami Vice and Heat brought in weapons experts.  We don’t see the ‘grabbing the wrist’ thing as much as we once did.

I’ve been binge watching Bosch on Amazon.  Based on Michael Connolly’s book character, the plots are generally riveting and well acted.  And Titus Welliver as the lead is pretty good, as a driven, ‘colors-outside-the-lines’ LAPD detective.

But, they had a big parking lot gun fight last night (Season 2), and many of the ‘professionals’ (both mobsters and cops) confused concealment with cover, and kept doing the jack-in-the-box thing (jumping up from behind something to return fire).

Smile for the camera!

It kinda took the wind out of my sails…

I plan on continuing to watch it, and hope the acting and the plot hide the poor action sequences.

Also, the lead character wears two extra 1911 magazines – placed backwards in the mag pouch (about half the time), making tactical reloads problematic!

I know – picky, picky, picky

Bosch

 

 

 

Adam West RIP

I was never a fan of Batman, the television series.  Correction, I didn’t understand camp.

(You must understand, I was in junior high, preparing to graduate to high school, and thought myself a serious intellectual.  😛 )

I did remember Adam West from a previous episode of Robert Taylor’s The Detectives, though.  I liked him in that role.

Most persons who become type cast eventually fade away, unless they have amazing talent and staying power.  George Reeves killed himself (or was murdered).  And Baby Boomers will always associate him with the Superman TV series.

Mr. West worked long before he was Batman, and long afterward.  Sometimes as cartoon voice-overs, but not always.  He didn’t just do car shows with the Batmobile.  He embraced the Batman mythos, and made it his.

And, not unlike Patrick Stewart (in American Dad), he made his famous voice even more famous in ‘adult’ cartoons, like Family Guy. (as the Mayor of Quahog).

He passed after a short bout with leukemia.  Having had a blood disease, myself, this definitely got my attention.

He will be missed.

‘I Consider Myself A Guest Here’

Canadian William Shatner REFUSES

To Trash Trump: ‘I Consider Myself a

Guest Here’

William Shanter, the ICONIC Star Trek actor himself, refuses to talk ill of President Donald Trump regardless of his feelings for politics. In a recent interview he had with the Daily Beast he spoke all about it, and his new book, ‘Spirit of the Horse’. During this interview, Shatner made it really clear that his name was not to be added to an open letter that was released out of Hollywood last year denouncing Trump’s candidacy.

“I didn’t do that. I would never have done that,” the actor said of the anti-Trump letter posted on the Trek Against Trump Facebook page last September.

There were however, notable personalities of the original star trek series like George Takei (of course) who played Hikaru Sulu, and Star Trek Into Darkness director JJ.Abrams, who was a very avid Clinton supporter did sign that letter.

The Beast reporter did attempt more than once to get Shatner to dish on Trump, and the actor stuck to his guns refusing to do so, making it very clear that he wasn’t willing to speak ill of the president.

“I don’t want to discuss Trump or [George] Takei,” Shatner said, adding: “Listen, I’m Canadian and I’m apolitical. I love America. I consider myself a guest here.”

“I won’t do anything that might get me deported,” the 86-year-old star joked.

The Priceline pitchman, known best for his role as Captain James T. Kirk, commander of the U.S.S. Enterprise, also revealed that while he and Abrams have discussed him having a role in the rebooted Star Trek film franchise, the director hasn’t extended the offer.

“I’ve met with J.J. Abrams, who seems to be running the film franchise now,” Shatner said. “Though I’ve repeatedly expressed my interest in being in one of the Star Trek movies they seem to have no interest in bringing back old Captain James T. Kirk.”

Shatner, who made his small-screen debut as Captain Kirk in 1966, also revealed that he has never seen any of the new films.

A lifelong lover of horses, Shatner’s new book Spirit of the Horse is a love letter to his four-legged friends.

Although he is very liberal in his political beliefs, he knows how to stand for those beliefs without being ridiculous and out of line like his other Hollywood friends.

Yep. I could sit next to him on a plane, introduce myself as a conservative and he’d like me.

That’s how it’s suppose to be.

h/t Facebook, I Have the Truth.com

AMEN, Mr. Shatner and Mr. Wendal!

Now, I’m not an unabashed fan of the current President (although he is certainly a vast improvement over the last one!)  Having said that, I tire of the juvenile and sometimes criminal actions taken against the President.  Like it or not, he IS the President!  And deserves some respect.

(I’d preferred a more libertarian President, stopping this ongoing assault on the Fourth Amendment.  One with a better speaking style.  Wish in one hand…)

To see and hear (most) Hollywood types continue to attack and beat on him is more than shameful.  YES, everyone has a right to an opinion.

But, lets be adult about it, shall we?  Disagree on policy choices, not hairstyles!

 

Powers Boothe, RIP

You guys know how much I love character actors.

Sadly, another one has passed on – Powers Boothe.  Yesterday, of natural causes.

He’s one of those guys whom I had difficulty remembering his name, but loved his work.

Most of you probably remember him as ‘Curly’ Bill Brocius from the epic film Tombstone.

But he was so much more.

Jim Jones, Sin City, The Avengers, Deadwood, Agents of Shield, Nashville, Red Dawn, and 24 among many others.  He did the voice-over for Con Air.

I’ll always have a fondness for Philip Marlowe-Private Eye and Rapid Fire (wherein he played opposite Brandon Lee).

You will indeed be missed.

 

Memorable Movie Mistakes

I’ve not been ‘on a date’ in some time.  It’s simply a matter of logistics – I’ve no extraneous funds and my car is a beater with no air conditioning.

The fact that I don’t travel is any circles with available women has nothing to do with it!

😛

I was thinking this morning about a few of my more memorable dates in the distant past.  Some with fondness; some not-so-much.

I used to like to attend the cinema.  There were many first-run films each week, lots of theaters from which to choose, and who doesn’t like sitting in the dark with a young woman? (this was in my 20’s – before I had been married, and subsequently divorced).

Now, of course, there are fewer movies and movie houses.  And one may sit at home in one’s skivvies and watch videos until the cows come home, with beer, pizza, and (if one is so lucky) company.

AND, one may pause to go to the bathroom!

Times have changed.

ANYWAY, I remembered a couple of dates.  One was a later Hitchcock film.  I did (and DO love Alfred Hitchcock).  My date said she did as well.  Were post-date antics in the offing?

Sadly NO.  The film was Frenzy.  A film of a serial killer rapist, made in London.  I think it was the first time Hitch actually exposed breasts on film.  Following a violent rape and strangulation.  Hardly something to arouse a normal young woman to later romance.

Sigh.

Another time, a former girlfriend returned to town and looked me up.  We went out a few times, and I had hope of rekindling the romance.  But, it was not to be…

She had mentioned she liked Burt Reynolds.  There was a new film out with him in it.  I thought “Hey!  Maybe this will get things going again?”

Hardly.  The film was Deliverance.  You remember – dueling banjos, homosexual rape?

I just couldn’t get a break!

(as an aside, the consummate actor Ned Beatty was the rape victim here.  I’ve wondered about the audition…“Hey, pages 18 and 19 are missing?  Don’t worry about it, Ned.)

"Round up the usual suspects."

In Loving Memory…