Tag Archives: commentary

No debate

I love a Craig Ferguson show, and his new series on History Channel, Join or Die, is no exception.

  • join or die

Craig along with three celebrities from various walks of life debate different topics and, with the studio audience’s assistance, crown a champion. Recent topics have included greatest unexplained phenomena, greatest gangster, history’s dumbest mistake, you get the idea.

This week they tackled history’s best founding father. The panelists were actor Fred Willard, comedian Jo Koy, and journalist Joel Stein. The founding father choices? George Washington, John Adams, Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson.

Now, I don’t expect the panelists to do excessive research in preparation for the show, but the dismissive comments they made about John Adams’ contribution to the founding of this country made me realize…

They hadn’t even watched the movie or stage version of 1776.

Take away their citizenship. Right. Now.

George Washington won, by the way. Shocker.

A bird in the hand

I can accept the fact that The Angry Birds Movie won this weekend’s box office.

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Animated films have broader appeal and a wider audience. Plus, last week’s number one film and very close runner-up Captain America has been out for three weeks.

My beef with the Birds?

What took them so long?  This app used to be all the rage,  but Candy Crush and other games occupy the top spots now.  This movie is so late to the party,  there is no party anymore.

Obviously kids will still watch it,  but they — and their long-suffering parents — shouldn’t have to.

I am not an animal

The Lobster is the quintessential independent film.

Original. Absurd. Other-worldly.

the lobster

This world does not allow adults to be single. In fact, newly single people have 45 days to find a mate with similar characteristics as themselves, or they will be turned into animals and released into the forest.

Hey – they get to choose which animal, so that’s nice.

The people of this world appear unemotional, and speak with a deadpan delivery that would make any PBS station proud. Of course, there are always one or two folks who attempt to break the rules.

Their bad behavior is what drives this film, and you’ll be cheering for them, even as you shake your head in confused fascination.

It delivers

More than a few critics included the thriller It Follows on their year’s best list…some saying it was one of the great scary films of all time.

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Even with that ringing endorsement,  I waited to watch the film until it was free on cable, and on early enough that I could shake off any creepiness long before bedtime.

Hey,  I live alone.

I like the fact that it began in the middle – –  no long exposition,  so you are spooked from the start.  There are plenty of reasons to jump and scream,  but no gore which I personally appreciate. And the movie doesn’t tie everything up with a bow at the end, which increases the spook factor.

Is it the scariest movie I have ever seen?  No.  But it’s a good ‘un.

So filling

I saw the new musical Waitress on Wednesday.

waitressA lot has already been written about that particular performance, since they had to stop the show twice to deal with scenery malfunction…but no one was complaining.

Sara Bareilles was the entertainment during the break.

It’s not the first time I have experienced stoppages like this on Broadway.  When I saw Harvey starring Jim Parsons from “The Big Bang Theory,” they too had pesky set pieces that simply would not move.

That’s what you get when you go to early previews.

And with Waitress, you get a wonderful, heart-felt, truly hilarious take on one of my favorite films.  Kudos to the casting director, because every role was spot-on — especially the male supporting characters, who stole the show every time they stepped out on stage.

Drew Gehling as Dr. Pomatter — a role originated by my man Nathan Fillion in the movie — has big shoes to fill and does it with unique comedic timing and fantastic chemistry with star Jessie Mueller.  But the biggest ovation at curtain call — rightly so — went to Christopher Fitzgerald, who chews up the scenery (or should I say pie?) as the quirky Ogie the Elf.

The music is wonderful, and ya gotta love any set that features a cherry pie curtain, even if the darn thing doesn’t work all that well.  Because the show?

Sweet!

 

 

 

 

Wash your hands

I see these little hand sanitizer clip ons all over the place.  Today it was the subway.

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While I  personally think hand sanitizer is ruining the planet,  I am entertained by the fact it has earned a place on the outside of people’s bags.

Why not makeup?  Or the lip balm that some folks are so addicted to?  Or even better,  candy or gum?

Purcell beat ’em to it. And we all have to look at it.

Gum would be better.

Now you see it, now…

Dear Walking Dead director:

walking deadYou are so successful, you don’t have to listen to anyone, let alone a sticky blogger.

But I think you could learn a lot from the methods employed by the director of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.

True, it’s a costume drama first and a zombie movie second, but zombies are its reason for being…although any Pride and Prejudice fan will recognize dialogue and plot lines that have been carried forward from the original text.

Except the zombies. They’re new. But they’re not in-your-face gory.

pride-and-prejudice-and-zombiesWell, their faces are half gone, and some limbs are missing, and your standard bloody-gutty zombie fare. But when the Bennett sisters expertly slay the zombie hoard — they trained in China — it primarily occurs off-camera.

Instead of watching blood and guts and gore spew forth, we get to see their expert swordplay and marksmanship. It’s really very fun.

And I for one didn’t miss feeling queasy one little bit.