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Diary Rings

Can we just jump to January please? - 2014-11-14
A (don't kick the) Bucket List - 2014-10-28
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10:39 p.m. - 2011-02-10
Dim the houselights and raise the curtain.

I'm listening to Wolf and Mick having what sounds like a very fun conversation. Just the tone not the precise words comes through the wall. They're in the dining room eating reheated rigatoni and sweet sausage leftover from the night before last. I'm not a big one for leftovers, except stuff that's always better the next day anyway like chili, pot roast and holiday turkey. Though the last is really the reason I make turkey in the first place. I usually want to rush my guests through the big deal meal, have them eat their pie and be gone already so I can get to that first ambrosial turkey sandwich.

Dinner. Meh. I've not had much of an appetite for the last couple days anyhow. Been mostly living on tea, with the occasional toasted bread product. Don't have the flu or anything, just not hungry. At least my tummy isn't, but my eyes sure are. We're just in from Sam's Club and along with a hella lot of food we got a honking buttload of movies. At an average price of $4.00 per, how could we resist?

Yes, I know about On Demand and streaming Netflix, certainly good ways to check out new movies and oldies I might not have seen before, but everything I got tonight was a beloved and something I needed to have in my movie library. Come the apocalypse and things like Netflix are gone you can bet your sweet patootie that I will be using whatever scant power I get off my generator to watch movies, even if I have to power the damn thing with my feet via a treadmill. (It's the Armageddon Shape-Up Plan®. Coming to you on a late night infomercial real soon.) A few of the titles I already own on VHS and that's fine for watching in the bedroom or living room where the dvd/VCR machines live, but dvd copies aren't a waste. Not when I can hole up here in the Sage Cave and watch 'em on my computer.

Mick got a few of his faves, those revenge movies and dystopian sci-fi flicks he loves so much, whereas I picked up some real movies. Okay, the Disney three-pack of princess movies - 'Enchanted' and 'The Princess Diaries 1 and 2' didn't win any Oscars, but we all know my thing with princess movies, so what the hey. The rest are classy and/or classic.

'Jeremiah Johnson'- probably the most off-beat of Sydney Pollack's movies. And certainly Robert Redford was trying to shake off his pretty boy image and prove he had the chops to look like crap onscreen. I usually stop watching after Jeremiah's found family is killed by the vengeful Crow warriors, but I love the rest of the movie so much!

'12 Angry Men'- the 1957 Henry Fonda one. Not dissing the 1997 remake. Friedkin definitely put his own spin on the story and Jack Lemmon was spectacular, but it's Lumet's version with Fonda and E.G. Marshall and the Jacks- Warden and Klugman that knocks me over every time, no matter how many times I see it.

Another multi-pack, this one of classic noir put together by TCM.

'The Postman Always Rings Twice'- damn that Lana Turner! What a cold-hearted cookie she is! I am not fond of the remake with Jack Nicholson and Jessica Lange. Nicholson is too slimy and Lange is never convincing as a schemer. Feh.

'dial M for Murder'- again, I'm not really crazy about Hitchcock. Or Grace Kelly for that matter. A rather heretical stance for a movie buff, but there it is. However 'dial M' is just fucking cool. Ray Milland's finest performance, after 'Lost Weekend' of course. He's sooo cagey. Sooo cruel.

'The Big Sleep'- c'mon. Howard Hawks directing? Bogie and Bacall? With snappy dialog by Raymond Chandler? You need more than this? I think not.

'The Maltese Falcon'- Bogie again. Spade, Marlowe, same guy, same hat even, but it matters not. Nobody was better than Bogart when it came to slightly seedy, slightly crooked private eyes with secret hearts of gold with a heaping helping of valor and morality that only show when he's driven to it. Plus there's Greenstreet and Lorre, a year before 'Casablanca' put them all together for the best movie EVER, but still just as fun. Plus Mary Astor as Bridget O'Shaughnessy, gads when she's being taken away by the cops and the elevator cage makes the shadows of prison bars across her face…wow. No lying, conniving, murderous bitch ever looked so pathetically noble.

Last but not least there's 'M*A*S*H'. Actually the title is 'MASH' without the asterisks, it was the TV show that had the asterisks. Robert Altman's send-up of Viet Nam set in Korea during the Korean Conflict because making a movie critical of Viet Nam and the absurdity of military life in 1970 was career suicide. Sure, the theme song may have said it's painless but Altman was just beginning his career in feature films and it's assumed he wanted to keep working.

Honestly, though I do admire the satire and the smart-ass tone and how Duvall's religious fanatic and all around pious hypocrite knucklehead Frank Burns was correctly identified as an idiot and a threat to brains and decency as opposed to today when such people are revered and feared and coddled lest we incur their low-IQ wrath, I mostly like 'MASH' because of Elliot Gould and Donald Sutherland's shaggy hirsute sex appeal. If I could be the filling in a Sutherland/Gould sandwich I'd die a happy woman. Yes, even today when Elliot Gould has grown quite round and Donald Sutherland looks like a strangely animate cadaver. A girl never forgets her first crush and those two were the crushiest of crushes for me.

Alas, the hour draws down late. I stopped in the middle of my rather gushing reviews to have a wonderful chat with my guy and discuss plans for the weekend. Now, however, I'm going to play eenie, meanie, miney, moe with my new dvd treasures and settle in for some damn fine movie time.


Pass the popcorn, ~LA

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