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Found 11 results

  1. Among the great athletes of the 20th century Julius Erving, Dr. J, deserves mention among the most famous, most relevant, best and most impactful. He played professional basketball from 1971 to 1987, 11 years in the NBA for Philadelphia, five years in the ABA for two different teams. Dr J, who has been referenced here quite a bit, albeit without a thread, introduced artistic soaring, starting from the outer edge of the court slam dunking to the NBA. He was certainly not the first, but he elevated it and turned it into a "thing", now, and for 3 decades one of the most commented and revered parts of the game. During his first five years of professional ball he played in the upstart ABA, winning two championships and dominated his team and the league, at times leading his team in points rebounds assists and guarding the best forward on the other team. In the NBA he led a Philadelphia team that kept competing for a championship all the while featuring the individual play of stars, (like Erving) while negating the team game. Frankly I got to watch him a bit in the 70's and 80's. In the 70's I saw him play for the Nets against a Denver team with a similarly talented super duper star, David Thompson, wherein they both elevated their games to lead their teams and created one of the more memorable sporting events I've ever seen. Dr J is among the 50 great basketball players of all time, appropriately so. Some of his most startling plays..... and then a look at his ABA slam dunk competition against among others David Thompson.....
  2. Peter Gabriel left Genesis mainly because he got tired of clashing so much with Tony Banks. He went on to do some pretty good things. "Humdrum" (1977) "Games Without Frontiers" (1980) "Wallflower" (1982) "San Jacino" (1982) This just scratches the surface....Still, I think the tension of Genesis made for something unusual. But I do love what Pete's done on his own.
  3. Steve Hackett is a rather underrated guitarist. Enjoy. From 'Foxtrot' - 'Horizons' From 'Nursery Chryme' - 'Return of the Giant Hogweed' From 'Voyage of the Acolyte' - Hackett's masterpiece 'Shadow of the Hierophant' From another solo work 'Spectral Mornings'. Perhaps one of his most singular iconic pieces he's ever written.
  4. Thanks for the reference @Kibbee Nayee Ron Guidry brings back memories, connecting all the way back to my youth. My closest friend, going all the way back to kindergarten turned into a high school baseball star; a pitcher who was Guidry sized--(very skinny) not tall, but who also had tremendous velocity a good curve and great control. He won all-conference, all county and all state honors along with a baseball scholarship to a division one college. But unfortunately his career peaked in college. Didn't go any further. Anyway we were sort of one another's "wing men" long before that phrase became popular, and practiced that starting in elementary school When Guidry burst onto the scene in the mid 70's we both realized this pitching star was the same size and dimensions as my ole bud, Don. They pitched alike albeit Guidry a bit, or more likely quantum levels better--but alike, nonetheless. Once Guidry became known we used to go to Memorial Stadium to see Guidry pitch, even springing for close up expensive seats. Ole Don grudgingly admitted: "Guidry's better". We saw Guidry pitch in Baltimore probably 7 years. Every year we'd schedule a visit: "Lets go see Guidry ." Guidry was a phenomena. Probably shorter than virtually all ball players and way way skinnier, but he had excellent velocity and had a dominating career for a number of years. Its not the kind of thing I ever whine about, but I felt a strong connection to Guidry...and damn yes. He should have won the MVP in '78. That was an epic pitching performance, one of the best in history. Damn that reference gave me a flood of memories. From elementary school on till our late 30's at least, we might have competed in some sport, some game, even checkers and chess. I estimate my record against that sucker might be an inglorious 20-480 or thereabouts. Ha ha. Cripes, I recalled, being his wing man, racing out of first or second gradel right after class, racing toward his house and neighborhood and hiding in some bushes. When some big galoot came by we both jumped out of the bushes and pounded him to a pulp. I didn't even know why. (guess he had previously punched out ole Don). That is a wing man for you. I don't believe I've ever strongly felt "this guy deserves the MVP" in any sport in any year. I still think that way for Guidry and 1978. What a flood of memories.
  5. I was told, by someone who really knows the situation, to read this: "John Kelly and His Son's Memory Bring Decency to the White House" by Michael Daly on thedailybeast.com
  6. I won't review the show; this is a gratuitous plug because my daughter is playing "Fairy May" - one of the key supporting roles. Info here. If you go, please drop me a PM in advance, as I'd love to say hi, but I don't go to every showing.
  7. One of the cool things about retro-watching classic Hollywood films are the secondary screens listing the secondary actors and actresses. For example, take "All About Eve" (1950): And I have to give yet-another shout-out to Edith Head, who has won more Academy Awards (8) than any woman in history (Walt Disney has her beat with 22, which could be a difficult number to surpass): : I know two things about "All About Eve" going into the film: 1) It's one of the most famous movies ever made, and 2) I know nothing else about it. That is a *good* combination - I know it has Bette Davis in it (and also Marilyn Monroe from the above screen - if it's even possible, you might not recognize her at first unless you knew she was in the film (*)), and that it won an Academy Award for Best Picture from 1950, but that's about it - if I were writing a review of the film, you'd be getting a *v-e-r-y* pure critique, but I can hardly call what I do "reviews" so much as "calls for discussion" (because I want to enjoy the movie). I'm on the border of doing a separate thread for Gary Merrill - I've seen him in more than enough things where he deserves one: Likewise George Sanders, who not only plays the entitled critic Addison DeWitt in "All About Eve," but also played the scoundrel Jack Favell ten years before in "Rebecca." I've seen so many of these actors over the past month - Hugh Marlowe (who played Lloyd Richards) was an important character in "The Day the Earth Stood Still," released just a year after this was. And can anyone give a better "eat-shit" look than Bette Davis? *** SPOILER ALERT *** We all "know what happens" at the beginning of the film; it's how we get there that's the mystery. Yet, there are hints and clues throughout the movie (Eve (Anne Baxter) getting caught preening in front of the mirror with Margo's (Bette Davis's) gorgeous dress, for example). Interestingly, the one brash person in the world of Margo - Birdie (Thelma Ritter) - is also the one who plays the fool, and I mean the Fool in King Lear: Pay attention to everything she says in the film so you don't need to watch it twice. (*) This is such a great screen shot - remember my comment above about Marilyn Monroe. You can't really see Addison DeWitt (George Sanders), but it captures the essence of the three females *so well* (remember, Monroe wasn't famous yet, and she has a very minor role, but it still represents her in a picture-perfect way): A very interesting thing I noticed about "All About Eve" is the motif in the theme song, which is repeated in numerous places throughout the film - the first five notes are *exactly* the same as the first five notes in that of "Gone with the Wind." Perhaps my favorite exchange of dialogue in the film, between a furious Margo Channing (Davis, the actress) and an equally furious Lloyd Richards (Marlowe, the playwright). An angry screaming match: Richards: "Just when does an actress decide they're her words she's saying, and her thoughts she's expressing?" Channing: "Usually at the point when she has to rewrite and rethink them, to keep the audience from leaving the theater!" Richards: "It's about time the piano realized it has *not* written the concerto!" One thing about Addison DeWitt, the rogue theater critic: He knows what he's doing. Yes, he's corrupt as hell, but he still knows what he's doing, and only someone so full of self-interest would take the time to do the research that he did, all about Eve. If you understand the symbolism of this final scene, I like you, and want you to be a frequent poster in this forum; if you don't, please keep at it, watch as many great movies as you can, read as much as your time permits, and let's discuss things along the way. Likewise, if you understand why this is a genuinely great motion picture, but possibly a touch overrated, please also be a regular contributor (I don't really know why I'm saying these things, because I want everyone to be regular contributors here). "All About Eve" is a must-see for all serious students of film.
  8. "Broken Arrow" (1950) is Director Delmer Daves' Western in Technicolor, Starring James Stewart as Tom Jeffords and Jeff Chandler as Cochise, the Chief of the Chokonen Band of the Chiricahua Apache Tribe. Though clearly Hollywood-ized, it's also based on a true story, and if the viewer is willing to do some digging, can learn quite a bit from it. I have mixed feelings about watching old Hollywood Westerns for obvious reasons, but for me it's easy, because I generally pull for the Native Americans, and look at any type of "loss" as a tragic element - plus, I learn something, no matter how small, from each film I watch: I know less about Native American history than I do just about anything, and I'm well-aware that these "red-face" movies are filtered through the prejudiced eyes of Hollywood and America, so I adjust accordingly, and invariably walk away more educated. I did not know, for example, exactly where the Chircahua Apaches were based, and that led me to an article entitled "Apache Wars" on wikipedia.com - that's just one example. Not to mention that if you come across a decent one, these movies are action-packed and (dare I say it?) just plain fun. James Stewart played a wonderful character in Broken Arrow, and for someone not to see it just because they were "anti-Native American movies" would be a loss. Stewart plays an ex-Union soldier, Tom Jeffords, who was prospecting for gold before a new Colonel rode into Tuscon to see him. The Apaches were attacking the Pony Express, and Stewart volunteered to go meet with the Apache equivalent of Keyser Söze, Cochise. After Stewart assured Cochise that the Pony Express contained no messages of war (whch were all sent by telegraph), Cochise promised not to attack the carriers, and he kept to his word. Milt Duffield, mail superindendent (Arthur Hunnicut) is the only man courageous enough to test Cochise's promise not to attack mail delivery, and when he returns unscathed, gets a hearty ovation from the townspeople. Incidentally, you might recognize Hunnicutt from one of our favorite Twilight Zone episodes, "The Hunt." Stewart had earlier saved a 14-year-old Apache boy - whose brother and sister were both killed - from dying of thirst, and Cochise returned the favor both by letting him go earlier in the film, and by keeping his promise about the Pony Express - this can easily be seen as a metaphor for larger situations in life. Ben Slade (Will Geer) doesn't understand why Jeffords didn't kill the 14-year-old boy, and is suspicious enough to lead an attempt to *hang* Jeffords after the fifth mail rider returns unscathed - Slade convinced people that Jeffords was spying for Cochise. Not only that, but Duffield, the mail supervisor, thinks Jeffords is daft for wanting to learn to speak Apache - Jeffords wants to meet with Cochise on his own turf, and figures knowing some Apache is the best way to make entry (not to mention the fact that he has fallen *very* deeply in love with an Indian maiden). However, Cochise in no way agreed to end the war - when white soldiers weren't killed in raids, they were tortured to death in unspeakable ways: Of three wounded soldiers, two were suspended from a tree branch while an Apache shot the trunk with a burning arrow, allowing the flames to slowly expand outward, and the third had it even worse: He was buried up to his neck, and his face was smeared with Mezcal juice so the ants would slowly eat his face off. None of this was graphic, of course (it was 1950), but just thinking about it is enough to give anyone the shivers. "They say that cat Cochise is a bad motha-f ..." "Shut yo mouth!" (Name the song! Hint: It's what Native Americans got in this country.) Sonseeahray ("Morning Star," played by Debra Paget), a fictional character - note the pronunciation: "Sun, see a ray" - is experiencing a holy ("coming-of-age") ceremony, and blesses Jeffords' old, wounded arm, saying that it will never hurt again. Jeffords' arm has been a source of constant pain, and this young, beautiful girl looking after him goes straight to his heart. There is a genuinely tender, albeit dated, moment when Jeffords falls in love with Sonseeahray - there is absolutely *nothing* sexual about this (at first); he simply realizes, after seeing her for the second time, and still having strong feelings for her, that he has fallen in love for the first time in his life - this may seem "awkward" to today's woman - a man in his 40's falling in love with a young maiden who probably just turned 15, but it works here, and I found it incredibly touching because Jeffords makes no attempt at physical contact; he merely tells Sonseeahray that, for the first time in his life, he's going to miss somebody. And, because the mail is getting through, but an entire wagon train was slaughtered, Jeffords is - as mentioned above - accused of being Cochise's spy: No good deed goes unpunished. The townsmen, with their mob mentality, go so far as to drag Jeffords out of a bar, string a rope up, and prepare for a public hanging (think: "The Monsters are Due on Maple Street"). This is big-deal stuff - just as Jeffords is about to be hanged, a General (a full-fledged General - Oliver Otis Howard (Cochise is mentioned on his Wikipedia page), known as "The Christian General," and played by Basil Ruysdael) arrives - yes, yes, I know, yet another Deus ex Machina - pulls Jeffords into his office, and tells him that he has authority from President Ulysses S. Grant to make a peace treaty with Cochise. I mean, that is pretty bad-ass, especially considering that the gist of the story is true. Could it be, that Geronimo, whom we *all* know of, but none of us know anything about, is *the* Geronimo who "walks away" in this film? My initial impression, upon seeing the moment, is, 'Yes, he is.' I don't know enough about Geronimo to say for sure, but if he was any type of Apache split-off, then this was most likely him, lending even more historical significance to what is already a great movie. Damn I wish I had been sober enough to remember how it ended. In all seriousness, this is an excellent movie - I have been choosing particularly well of late. If you're in the mood for an action-packed Western, with plot, seriousness, historical importance, and great depth and substance, this would be a good film for you to choose. Pathetically, screenwriter Alfred Maltz was blacklisted as one of the Hollywood Ten. Hey, if being a commie means I can write this well, color me red any day of the week. Here is an excellent review: Oct 9, 2010 - "Groundbreaking Western" by James Hitchcock on imdb.com
  9. I don't recall seeing McGinnis in the ABA. Clearly he was a superstar. And he was a physical stud. Very well built, sort of a Lebron or a Karl Malone type--much thicker and stronger than other players on the court. But when he got to Philadelphia and later teamed with Dr J, something was off. They didn't mesh well and Dr J was better. In fact they had a lot of similar basketball attributes, even as they were so physically different. They didn't team well and they didn't complement one another. Overall in that '77 NBA championship he was outplayed by Maurice Lucas who covered McGinnis. Philly traded him and he simply wasn't dominating as he did in the ABA, and I recall him sort of like a ball hog... His skills and achievements diminished in the NBA. I suspect it was age. McGinnis would clearly have great highlights as he was a physical stud...and it wasn't that the NBA was that much (or even marginally better) but his skills diminished and/or he simply team well. OTOH I bet he is a big basketball hero in Indianapolis. Its where his earlier career flourished.
  10. I suspect very few people here remember "Eres Tíº," a Spanish song from 1973 performed by the group Mocedades - it made the Top 40 charts when I was 12 years old, and I distinctly remember my Spanish teacher playing it for the class. Anyway, for those of you who don't know it, or want to take a stroll down Memory Lane: Anyway, it popped into my head, and I found it on YouTube, but then discovered it had been entered - and took second place - in the 1973 Eurovision Song Contest, and based on its success there, it was released as a single, and was a minor hit in the United States (it was very rare, if not unprecedented, for a Spanish-language song to crack the Top 40). But there was a controversy: The group was accused of plagiarizing the 1966 Yugoslavian song, "Brez Besed" performed by Berta Ambrož - you can decide for yourselves, but there isn't much doubt in my mind that at least some of Brez Besed was "borrowed":
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