Every April, I actually set a reminder in my phone and my calendars on the computers so I don't miss the broadcast on HBO. This year, three of my favorites were inducted. Jeff Lynne's Electric Light Orchestra, inducted by Dhanni Harrison, George's son. Pearl Jam, inducted by David Letterman, and Tupac inducted by Snoop. I was overwhelmed a couple of times with the touching stories, pride, and joy from the presenters, and the performances were over the top. My wiener babies even sat and watched it with me, it was truly that good.
Other inductees were Journey - I was upset that Steve Perry wasn't allowed to sing during their performance. Yes! inducted by Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson, Joan Baez inducted by Jackson Browne, and Nile Rodgers inducted by Pharrell Williams.
I'm so glad that it's available on HBO on demand. I'll probably have to watch it three or four more times.
This is an amazing movie. The story is terribly sad, horrible, actually. But, it is tempered by the science/technology and advances in medicine due to research from Mrs. Lacks cells.
I give it 4/5 star rating because it was so sad during a couple of parts, I almost had to turn it off.
Gil, played by Owen Wilson, has left his position as a very successful screenwriter to write The Great American Novel. He's engaged to Inez, who thinks he's wasting his time, thinks he's cheap, and makes the audience wonder why she agreed to marry him if he's such a loser. Throw in her mean, petty parents, and her boorish, snobby friends, and it's no wonder Gil walks the streets of Paris alone.
Then... at midnight, he finds the portal... and is transported to another time. He meets Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, Salvador Dali, Gertrude Stein, Paul Gauguin, T.S. Elliott, Henri Matisse, Edgar Degas, Pablo Picasso, the list goes on and on.
The movie was originally released in 2011, but hasn't lost a bit of its charm. I fell head first and experienced the same enchantment and delight as I did with the first viewing.
March 10, 2017
"Nihilists?! F*ck me... I mean, say what you want about the tenets of National Socialism Dude, at least it's an ethos..."
While in still in school, I had a philosophy class that touched briefly on the different branches. The instructor also happened to be a Methodist minister, and always wore these snazzy bow ties. He was great, and I loved him.
When he discussed Nihilism, I remember feeling frightened at a gut level. Seriously? A belief system that basically states morality, love, peace, and justice are not inherent, and that finding the purpose of one's life and happiness should be the ultimate goal? It sounded like Satanism!
Keep in mind, I was still a kid with no life experience and this was the my introduction to the subject. Over the past forty years, I've matured a bit, and come to realize that Nihilists are not a bunch of lunatics plotting to destroy society as I know it. They're not evil monsters.
What does strike me as funny -- makes me laugh out loud -- is that in quite a few movies and television shows, when the subject comes up, at least one person has the same knee-jerk reaction I had during Dr. Klein's lecture back in 1977.
February 13, 2017 - Inception
It's me rambling again. This movie never fails to suck me in hook, line, and sinker.
Dreams have fascinated me for as long as I've had conscious thought. I have dozens of books on dream interpretation, lucid dreaming, dreams as divination, you name it.
Many aboriginal cultures around the world have / had Dreamwalkers, shamans who are able to enter the dreams of others to give advice or spiritual guidance. I suppose this is where Christopher Nolan came up with the basis for his story.
Inception has it all - "extractors" who use experimental technology to infiltrate the subconscious of their target and extract information through a shared dream world. The dreams are layered, one on top of another. There are architects who construct each level, a chemist who created a sedative to induce the levels, a con man who can manipulate the target into seeing someone they know and trust. It's mind bending.
What makes my heart ache, every single time, is the ending. Once the mission is completed, our protagonist has been cleared of any wrong-doing in his wife's death and is finally reunited with this children. We see his totem, the top, is still spinning, letting us know he's only dreaming.
Okay, on to lighter fare - something involving cute animals or Melissa McCarthy as Sean Spicer!
What is the scariest movie you've ever seen?
I have a double answer:
- The Exorcist: It was released in 1973, but I wasn't able to see it until 1975, when I had a driver's license. Cathy and I went to the drive in to watch. The book gave me nightmares for weeks, so I thought the movie couldn't possibly be as bad as my imagination. I was wrong. The images weren't so bad, but the whole idea of demon possession . . . still makes me feel like hiding under the bed!
- Paranormal Activity: Cathy and I saw this at the theater, and it scared us so badly, I actually posted a review at IMDb. Without any embarrassment or shame, I can say that I have NEVER been so frightened just watching people sleep!
Anyone care to play along?
Miss Katharine Hepburn . . . there just aren't enough words to describe how much I enjoy her. In my opinion, she was never really beautiful, at least in Hollywood's definition of beauty, but that's part of her appeal.
And? Every time I see her on screen, I expect her to say, "We saw the Encantadas, but on the Encantadas, we saw something Melville hadn't written about."
That is all, you're excused. :-D
This movie is so amazing, I have no words to do it justice. It is set (and filmed) in the Ozarks, less than an hour's drive from where I grew up and still live. The story, the actors, clothing, dialect, everything, are so spot on, I found myself thinking I actually know these people. Hell, I'm probably related to them!
To date, it won The Grand Jury Prize at Sundance, was nominated for every major film festival and critics' award, and is nominated for four Academy Awards.
Do yourself a favor, put it in your Netflix queue, get it from Redbox or Blockbuster, whatever, just watch it!
Without giving too much away, it is the story of a group of people still struggling over a 25-year-old unsolved rape/murder case. The film is in Spanish with subtitles, but after the first three or four minutes, I was so completely engrossed, I literally forgot that I was reading along.
The majority of violence is at the very beginning; it is disturbing and hard to watch, but the story would not be as powerful without it.
I can't think of a single negative thing to say about this film and I would highly recommend it to everyone.