Monday, April 05, 2021

Still Here

 Criterion is running a Dirk Bogarde festival this month and CAST A DARK SHADOW was an eerie start. Ever seen it? Bogarde plays a man who marries and then kills his elderly wife for her money. But none too smart, he misunderstands the terms of her will. A somewhat surprising story line and Bogarde's dark acting made it work. It looks like the other films are just as dark. 

Megan got her first shot and is coming out right after her second. It will have been a year and a half since I saw her. Only for two days, but I will take what I can get gladly. Not too long ago we were figuring it would be July so May looks pretty good.

I saw my first Jerry Lewis film--in maybe ever--this week.It was as goofy as I imagined but it has a kind of charm. Lots of singing. Lots of totally improbably sequences. 

As I am reading the Mike Nichols bio, I watched CARNAL KNOWLEDGE, which held up well. I saw it last in the theater at age 21 and was pretty mystified by it. Still am a bit. The bio is very good btw.

Watching Shtisel on Netflix, which is a good palate cleanser to Carnal Knowledge and the Bogarde movie.

Finally finished the first three seasons of The Handmaid's Tale, which was well done indeed although horrifying most of the time. Elizabeth Moss is such a terrific actress.

So what's new with you?


Steve A Oerkfitz said...

I don't remember ever seeing that Dirk Bogarde film. He did a number of dark films I have seen like The Victim, The Servant and The Night Porter. I have thought about getting Criterion again just to see Celine and Julie Go Boating. A film I have wanted to see for years.
Watched The Serpent on Netflix. I remember readin Tom Thompson's best seller about this case decades ago.
Just read a couple of true crime books: The Babysitter and Last Call. Now reading Not Dark Yet by Peter Robinson. After that the new Peter May.
The Detroit Tigers started off by beating Cleveland 2 out of 3. Which is good for them.
Love this weather. 60's all week.
Just found out one of my favorite writers passed. Larry McMurtry. I would have thought it would have gotten a mention on CNN, but if it did I missed it.
Glad you are getting to see Megan.

Jerry House said...

After a few days of chilly and breezy weather, the weekend turned out gorgeous for an Easter celebration on the beach.

Still having problems with my computer although Jessie managed to eliminate a few of them on Friday. Why is it that everyone younger then me is so computer and technically savvy? I have a hard time even answering my cell phone so I often don't -- which is something strangely liberating.

Feeling a bit of schadenfreude about Matt Gaetz, not one of my favorite people. I should feel sorry for him but my insides are chuckling. He never was the sharpest crayon in the box, but here in the Panhandle (a.k.a. Trump country) people like him.

I'm still reading a lot of short stories, mainly mystery and horror from those big, fat instant remainder anthologies. Also a few juveniles (Joan Aiken, The Three Investigators) and a couple of John Creasey thrillers. I still have about three dozen Creaseys buried around here unread.

Enjoying THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER. It does feel odd watching something on a weekly basis after so much series binging over the past year. We really enjoyed the first season of UTOPIA. A remake of a 2013 British television program, this one is scripted by Gillian Flynn, it's about a group of comic book nerds who uncover a vast plot. A lot of negative comments on IMDb, but we liked it.

Today is National Deep Dish Pizza Day. I hope you celebrate responsibly. Have a great week, Patti!

Margot Kinberg said...

I'm really glad you've had some good viewing, Patti. I have to admit, I'm not in a frame of mind for dark TV and films right now, but they do sound well done.

Jeff Meyerson said...

Yes, we were excited to see the third series of SHTISEL and are rationing them slowly. The first episode had a shocking twist and they handled it well. But we tend to not watch anything more than twice a week as a rule, since we seem to have so many series going at all times. We've added a couple of Canadian series on Ovation - REMEDY, a so so medical drama that ran two series of 10 episodes each (Enrico Colantoni, who seems to be in everything, is the father, Acting Chief of Staff at a Toronto hospital, where one daughter is a long-time nurse and the other is a younger surgeon, and his son is a druggie who dropped out of med school and disappeared for two years before his recent return), and CRACKED, a show about a new Psych Crimes Unit teaming up a cop with a psychiatrist. This ran two series, 21 total episodes, in 2013-14. Again, watchable but nothing special.

We are enjoying two Netflix series we finally got around to: the Spanish hit show MONEY HEIST and the French LUPIN (which I appreciate for having only 5 episodes). MONEY HEIST is a lot of fun. "The Professor" recruits 8 criminals to raid the National Mint in Madrid and take everyone hostage, not to steal the money but rather to print millions of new Euros. Nice characters, twists and turns, fun so far.

Besides these, still watching (some intermittently) MOSSAD 101, THE BAY, CAPITANI, INSPECTOR MANARA, MONTALBANO, MURDER BY THE LAKE, THE GOOD PLACE (on the last series), SCHITT'S CREEK, SPIRAL (finished series 1), EQUINOX (started well but going downhill fast), SEASIDE HOTEL (series 2). Also watching season two of STAR TREK: DISCOVERY from the library, and so far it is a lot better than the first season.

I must admit that the longer (and it is way too long) that GENIUS: ARETHA goes on, the less we like it. Well acted and sung, but you never feel like you know what she is thinking or feeling at all, and way too much cutting back and forth from her childhood to the '60s. Last night we watched the HBO documentary TINA, which said more in two hours than Aretha did in eight. Tina Turner made a lot of bad mistakes in her life, but she just moved on, though I wish they had told more about her relationship with her sons. From what I've read, one doesn't speak to her and another killed himself in 2018.

pattinase (abbott) said...

So true about Aretha, Jeff. I bailed after the third episode. And I loved the Tina doc even though I was never a great fan of her music.
The pure pleasure of being able to hop off to the beach, Jerry. Can't imagine it.
Steve-I pay $99 a year for Criterion and I think it is worth it because I don't get TCM. But I am spending way too much when you add in Netflix, Hulu, Prime, Apple and HBO MAX. Plus nearly $300 a month for Comcast although that does include the HBO. It was necessary during the pandemic so I wouldn't go crazy from boredom but I am not sure about now.

George said...

Diane and I are in sunny Ohio visiting Diane's sister who she hadn't seen in-person in a year and a half (other than ZOOM calls). The drive from Buffalo to North Canton last week featured bursts of Lake Effect snow but we made it. Now, the temps are hovering around 70 degrees!

Patrick and Katie are planning to visit us for Mother's Day. Glad Megan got her first shot. Patrick is hoping to get his vaccine shots before he travels home.

Like you and Jeff, we liked TINA better than GENIUS: ARETHA.

We leave for home tomorrow. After a year of isolating, it felt good to see Diane's family (all vaccinated) in-person again. Stay safe!

pattinase (abbott) said...

The GENIUS shows just have too many episodes. Eight hours is too much. Anxious to see what Ken Burns does with Hemingway on PBS tonight.

George said...

I'm tempted to read Blake Bailey's Philip Roth: The Biography. Yesterday's NEW YORK TIMES MAGAZINE had a fascinating article on how the biography came about. Roth is not one of my favorite writers. But I have read many of his books. There was an excellent review of the Mike Nichols biography in the Saturday WALL STREET JOURNAL. The review thought that Nichols wasted most of his talent later in life to pay for his extravagant life-style.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Yeah, I have read all of Roth's books and all of Blake Bailey's books so I am sure to get this one.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I ordered it through They funnel ten percent to local bookstores in your area. I just can't give amazon any money from books anymore even if it means paying more. I do order a lot of other stuff from them though. There is a truck on my block at least five times a day.

MP said...

Welcome back, Patti. Things are popping here in Atlanta, what with Governor Kemp's (AKA Governor Goober) voter suppression law and the associated outrage against it. Those of you who thought the state looked pretty good during the election what with Biden carrying the state and both Democratic senators winning should realize that what's going on now is much closer to the "real" Georgia.

The only novel I've read is the new Harlan Coben, "Win", which is just OK. I'm really looking forward to the Burns Hemingway doc and have been rereading some of the stories. A few weeks ago PBS American Masters did an interesting feature on another major favorite, Flannery O'Connor, which has led me to a reread of some of her stories. All this as the TBR stack grows higher.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Oh, I liked the Flannery O'Connor one too. I wish that one had been longer actually.
I have very close friends in Savannah and they went from pride to outrage over the two months.

Steven A Oerkfitz said...

I missed the Flannery O'Connor bio. Rats. They did one on Ursula K. Le Guin which originally aired on British tv. Unfortunately PBS cut about 30 minutes out of it. Already have the Hemingway DVR'd. I am a big fan of his short fiction. His novels not so much.

Gerard Saylor said...

My planned trip to IL went well and my sons and I spent a few days with my mother. The first part of our trip to Ann Arbor was cancelled because Boy #1 was waitlisted. But, if you're out of state and you apply to a school with rolling admissions the night of the admissions deadline those are the breaks. He has a couple other campuses to visit before deciding. Since MI may not get back to him by June they are out of the running. A tour of MN is booked a week from today.

Last week the WI Supreme Court struck down the governor's emergency order requiring masks. Our county and city don't have a mask order and now the library cannot require masks. Of course this all happened while I was out-of-state and on vacation- and THATS why I always bring my work laptop along on trips.

I'm glad to hear your daughter is able to visit.

Jeff Meyerson said...

Yeah, I meant to DVR the Flannery O'Connor too, but forgot. I'm betting it will be on again, as we have three area PBS stations showing some same and some different shows, and often bringing things back for pledge drives. Definitely recording the Hemingway starting tonight. I did watch the Le Guin, which was quite interesting.

MP, I know what you mean. Every time Kemp opens his mouth I'm thinking Gomer Pyle.

pattinase (abbott) said...

MI is very hard to get into from what I hear. As the premiere state school, people paying taxes here are not happy about it.
We are never going to get beyond this if this huge group of people won't wear masks and won't get the vaccine. And we have let them take over way to many state houses.

Rick Robinson said...

Nice weather here, and we've been in the garden and enjoying Spring. The Camellias are in full flower.

I've been reading short stories, essays (PRIVATE INVESTIGATIONS edited by Victoria Zackheim) and a novel, THE READERS' ROOM by Antoine Laurain which is terrific. We'll try to record the Hemingway that starts tonight which watching the final NCAA basketball game. We were very disappointed in the last second half-court lucky shot that beat UCLA.

I also finished Jodi Taylor's THE LONG AND THE SHORT OF IT. I'm not sure what I'll read next, but I've finished the books from the library and have lots of choices here on hand. Maybe it's time for some F&SF.

Gerard Saylor said...

Yes, MI is difficult to get into. And Ann Arbor's aerospace program is ranked #4 versus #9 IL. My mother has said getting into IL engineering is also very difficult. Being a legacy applicant (four relatives) may have given him equal footing with in-state students.

Jerry House said...

"The pure pleasure of being able to hop off to the beach, Jerry. Can't imagine it."

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Todd Mason said...

Spam visit above.

Hard Non-recommendation of THE SERPENT from me, judging from the 1st episode. As I noted for a friend:
'Just watched the first episode of THE SERPENT on Netflix...a piece of shit, all about idiots and predators, the latter wearing 50-ft billboards flashing SOCIOPATH in green letters--"Zo, my lovely, vill you come to my mansion and ask no questions?" "Cool, daddy-o! We're clueless hippies, except for the ones who aren't and play into the creep's hands for shits and giggles, while taunting the thugs!""
Don't care that it's Based on True portrayvs them sloppily and hammily.

Got my J&J shot yesterday and am running a slight fever I must go take care of, along with the congestion in my left eardrum. Fun! I understood one should not go Too social for three weeks after the shots, or Is that only the J&H?

Happier times..

Todd Mason said...

I see Fauci today is suggesting two weeks after one's final shot should be the Safe Waiting period for maskless, hugging sorts of interactions.

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