The American public would’ve disappointed Joseph Goebbels. Unlike Germans crushed by the Depression’s economic vise as well confounded by massive societal upheavals after the Great War, Americans of the last four years did not swallow the big lies. Continue reading Disunion
Too bad the ancients never divined movies. That way the celluloid art could take its rightful place among the other nine Muses. Instead if old enough in the eyes and opinions of the young and callow, films of certain vintages do not share wine’s ability to age well. Continue reading Persuasion at 24 Frames a Second
Thanksgiving is the perfect American holiday. It involves no organized religion and doesn’t commemorate any national event. Pretty much a civil feast day, Thanksgiving allows Americans to enjoy our one singular unifying trait – mindless gorging.
Strange how diet gurus quit hibernating and emerge en masse to inform and warn Americans about the perils of overeating on this single day. Really. Setting aside one day of the year for sanctioned mouth-stuffing won’t lard on that much tonnage, will it? A month? Yeah. One day? Please. Continue reading Less Thanks
Three Augusts ago I resided at ease in suburban splendor. So much so I took several vacation days to visit Kewpie in Miami. She’d been laboring on film shoot. Warren joined us.
When she wasn’t eye-rolling on-set shenanigans or prima dona outbursts, we treacherous three gamboled along South Beach. Had I known my carefree days were short, I would’ve behaved way more carelessly.
Hmmm. Just might suggest that as my epitaph.
Two years ago, Quarropas, the old hometown, remained somewhat recognizable. That was if a long-time resident squinted. By this time last year, it was less splendiferous since every soul making that loaded word “home” a desirable refuge had died away.
August 2014 marks my first year in Las Vegas. Continue reading Shoulder to the Wheel
Here’s a question that indelibly colors its speaker: “Where you at?”
Having lived in Metropolitan New York, I’ve doubtlessly heard it. Now relocated to Las Vegas the phrase echoes frequently. It insults my ears. It diminishes the level of regard the speaker will be held.
“Where you at?” sits among the worst of first impressions. Continue reading Bloody Mouth
Americans are too enamored of SCANDAL. Few transgressions are worthy of such designation. The misused and abused word itself. Thanks to the giant scarlet S, peccadillos barely deserving shrugs balloon into outrage.
We resort to SCANDAL too easily. Same with hero. Who can’t be a hero in America? It’s so easy now one needn’t bother swiping Pauline off train tracks at the last minute or yanking cats from tree limbs. The valor invested in hero, like the disgust which should weigh SCANDAL, has been devalued. Otherwise why call such stalwarts “everyday heroes”?
Isn’t that an oxymoron?
We now bestow ever-fleeting glory on mundane acts. It’s lazy tabloid media usage. Continue reading Small Beer
Unlike morally smug, ethically deficient conservatives and the Scripture misinterpreting evangelicals who enable them, the rest of us have had no hand in our own conception. Randomly created, we are born. Inevitably we die. If we’re lucky we begin enjoying semblances of control several years into seeing first light until our mortal forms lose vigor, and blindness begins the cascade rendering us past tense.
I read somewhere sight is the first of our senses that extinguishes; hearing the last. Maybe it’s apocryphal but Lillian Hellman yelled final tender endearments to Dashiell Hammett just as he succumbed on his deathbed. Seems right. The two writers were true to their beliefs as well as one another in a fashion that flouted convention.
Besides, who among us wouldn’t prefer going out hearing how we were adored? Loving phrases over a corpse comfort mourners but do the dead derive any benefit from them? Doubtful. Continue reading Our Time on Earth
We’re dumbing down Sherlock Holmes. If the recent Robert Downey, Jr., efforts making “Sherlocking” more accessible for the earbud/self-absorbed set weren’t puerile enough, BBC TV has gone whole-hog to render Arthur Conan Doyle’s detective and his associate Dr. John Watson relevant for 21st century viewers.
No need to wonder what Conan Doyle might’ve made of those revisions. He would’ve looked at them as if H.G. Wells had monkeyed with his template. On absinthe.
The Downey reboots were jarring. Are jarring. Will be jarring. Holmes as imagined by Sax Rohmer. Or H. Rider Haggard. Ripping yarns instead of Victorian Age mysteries. Holmes mirrored his time. Downey’s Holmes distorts it. Continue reading Not Your Father’s Blue Carbuncle