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Found 8 results

  1. SE1 EP1 - "The Addams Family Goes to School" I watched this episode last night - this was a disturbingly creepy comedy. Trivia: Carolyn Jones (Morticia) spent less time on the screen (six minutes) than anyone who was ever nominated for Best Supporting Actress, playing a lonely existentialist in "The Bachelor Party" (1957):
  2. Just as "Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?" (1962) fell into an obscure sub-genre of films being produced around the early 1960s called "Psycho-Biddy" - essentially old, famous actresses cast in new movies as "old ladies gone mad," "Satan's Triangle" (1975) falls into a cluster of films around the mid-1970s - including "The Exorcist" (1973), "The Omen" (1975), and "The Devils" (1971) that I would term, "Catholic Horror." I've never heard of this sub-genre before, but I remember an unusually high concentration of "Priest and Devil" films that came out right when I was transitioning from child to teenager (the exact time in someone's life when these would scare one the most). And "Satan's Triangle" scared the beejesus out of me when I saw it on TV, so much so that I've spent my entire life thinking it was one of the scariest films I've ever seen. However, I saw it last night for the first time in 42 years (!), and although parts are very creepy (if you watch it, make sure to stick with it until the very end), it just isn't all that terrifying, and although the actors themselves are extremely talented (Kim Novak, Doug McClure, Michael Conrad, Alejandro Rey), the film itself just doesn't bring out their very best. I also recently rewatched "Duel" (1971), Steven Spielberg's first feature-length film, which I saw when I was ten years old, and that film has not only withstood the test of time, but I enjoy it almost as much as a 56-year-old, as I did as a 10-year-old - Spielberg takes an almost painfully simple plot, and nearly impossibly turns it into 90-minutes of genuine, nail-biting thrills - I urge everyone reading this to click on that link and to watch "Duel." As for "Satan's Triangle," it isn't "dated" so much as I've grown up - any teenager who doesn't question the existence of God would probably still be scared by it, but I've turned into such a cynic that it just doesn't do as much for me. However, I can still be scared by a good, old-fashioned Catholic Horror film, if it was done well-enough; this particular one just isn't there. It's perhaps worth watching, and there are currently two free versions on YouTube which I cannot recommend (and won't even link to), as the quality is mediocre-to-poor (I made the mistake of watching one of these, and the quality of the presentation *really* diminished the experience). The one I watched even got worse in quality as it went along - if you're going to watch it, pay a few bucks and rent it: This might be the difference between "scary" and "not scary."
  3. Lately I've been catching Batman episodes on IFC. I probably haven't watched since I was 7 or 8. It's hilarious. Check it out if you get a chance. I didn't realize how many big showbiz names made guest appearances as the villains. Do you remember Otto Preminger and Eli Wallach as Mr. Freeze? Liberace as Chandell? Milton Berle as Louie the Lilac? Mmmm, Catwoman. (Julie Newmar or Eartha Kitt, doesn't matter)
  4. No, I'm not doing a retrospective of "The Brady Bunch" (goodness knows, I must have seen every episode when I was a kid), but I just read a couple of interesting pieces of trivia: Robert Reed was the second choice for Mike Brady; the producer's first choice was Gene Hackman (!), but he was too unknown at the time. Florence Henderson was the second choice for Carol Brady, after the role was turned down by her best friend, Shirley Jones, for "The Partridge Family." I can see Shirley Jones - she looks like Florence Henderson's cousin - but *Gene Hackman*? Good call going with Robert Reed (did you know he co-starred in "The Defenders?") - he fit the part; Hackman would have pulled out a gun and shot one of his kids in the back when they were running up the stairs. Season One (Sep 26, 1969 - Mar 20, 1970) 1.1 - "The Honeymoon" - Sep 26, 1969 - Directed by John Rich (Emmy Award Winner for "Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Comedy" for "The Dick Van Dyke Show" and for "Sammy's Visit" on "All in the Family")
  5. I watched "Roots" when I was fifteen years old, having absolutely *no* real-life experience to lend the series context - I lived in a sheltered, upper-middle class suburb, and had absolutely no exposure to any of this, except what I was taught in school. Having recently watched movies such as "Django Unchained," "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?" "Do the Right Thing," and "12 Years a Slave," I thought it was high time for *me* to do the right thing, and get back to the roots of all these movies - the original 1977 miniseries, which caused an incredible stir when it was released. It was hard to watch then, and I suspect it will be even harder to watch now that I have life's experiences behind me. I remember very well, about twenty years ago, a Jewish friend of mine watched all of "Shoah" - no small task - because he promised himself that he would, as a Jew, in order to educate himself and remember what happened to his people. For a similar - but opposite - reason, I'm watching Roots: Not because of what happened *to* my people, but because of what my people did *to* another race of innocents. Do I feel *personally* responsible for what occurred? I wasn't born yet, so how could I? Do I feel a responsibility for what occurred? Of course I do - primarily because it's still going on. A successful television broadcast is now considered to be about 10 million viewers - even though Roots got off to a relatively slow start, episode #1 was the only episode of the 8 - which ran every day for a week - that pulled in less than 30 million. It was remarkably successful, and well-received by both critics and the general public alike. Roots won 9 Emmy Awards with 28 nominations, and 1 Golden Globe Award with 2 nominations. Maybe I'm being a touch dramatic, but I hope this post inspires others to rewatch this important series. Amazon has the first episode for free, hoping to reel in viewers who will purchase the entire series for $34.99. I refuse to pay this, and am wondering if anyone knows where it can be viewed for less money. Alex Haley wrote the book (see below for additional information), and is implicitly credited as a Writer in all six episodes. There are simply too many stars in this series to do anything but add simple links for them - refer to their Wikipedia links for all the other work they've done - this would be a fool's errand for me to attempt. Jan 23 - Jan 29, 1977 - Episode List and Timetable Episode 1 - Directed by David Greene (Director of "Sebastian"), Written by William Blinn (Screenwriter of "Brian's Song") and Ernest Kinoy (Writer of "I Wouldn't Start from Here" on "Route 66") Featuring Edward Asner, O.J. Simpson, Ralph Waite, Ji-Tu Cumbuka, Maya Angelou, Moses Gunn, Thalmus Rasulala, Hari Rhodes, William Watson, Renn Woods, Levar Burton, Cicely Tyson, Ernest Thomas, Rebecca Bess, Henry Butts, Episode 2 - Episode 3 - Episode 4 - Episode 5 - Episode 6 - When the first episode ended, the first thing I thought of was the 9/11 attacks by Al-Qaeda: A few *morons* with letter openers brought down the World Trade Center, killing thousands in the process. It takes so little to do so much damage, and although slavery was a large institution, the protagonists in Episode 1 were just a few dozen idiots. Ironically, the victims of this crime against humanity were Muslim. I'm not sure how historically accurate that is (Alex Haley was caught plagiarizing parts of his book), but in Ghana, i,e., Northwest Africa, it's not impossible. "Miniseries: Roots Special" on pbs.org May 27, 2016 - "Roots: Behind the 1977 Series that Started a National Conversation" by Alynda Wheat on people.com
  6. Okay, I'm watching the end of Brian's Song for the first time since I was a kid. No, those things in my eyes aren't tears; my contact lenses are bothering me. A pretty endearingly funny line though: Piccolo is on the phone with Sayers after his second operation. "They told me you gave me a pint of blood yesterday - is it true?" Piccolo said. "Yeah," Sayers replied. "That explains it then." "Explains what?" "I've had this craving for chitlins' all day."
  7. dcs

    The Chew

    Has anyone watched The Chew? I had never seen it before stumbling upon it a few minutes ago. They just had a short segment regarding how to label food you put in the freezer. Really? This must be a new low in daytime TV. It makes you miss the soap opera that this show no doubt replaced. The show is sprinkled (reeking?) with celebrity chefs. I will reserve full judgment until I watch a few more episodes, which I will probably never get around to doing.
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