Saturday, August 27, 2011

TV Bites: Cul-de-Sac

Donald Pleasence's Fillet of Sole Bonne Femme

A shorter version of this post was originally published on the Criterion Collection website.

I'm going mad, I tell you! Mad! I dream of a bed made of ice. And snow. All the trees are covered in snow. And sweaters. I dream of wearing a scarf. A parka, even. Because it's cold. So very cold outside. I yearn to be only one place. And that place is.... ICE STATION ZEBRA!

Seriously, I finally understand the meaning of the word "hellacious." It is ungodly hot here in Texas. And all I'm going to say in reference to our esteemed governor, is that every time the weatherman says it looks like rain, the governor prays for rain, and then it doesn't rain. I'm just saying. Maybe his god is trying to tell him something?

Sunday, August 21, 2011

TV Bites: Footlight Parade

Joan Blondell's Chicken Chop Suey

I was reading an interview with Buck Henry and he was talking about movies, or scenes of movies, he carries in his head. Footlight Parade is one I've been carrying in my head for like 40 years now. I remember watching it on TV as a kid, and later seeing on the big screen at the Castro Theater in San Francisco whenever they showed it (at least once a year) in the late 70's & early 80's (which often led to visits afterwards to Sam Wo's for noodles). I think Joan Blondell may have been the first movie star crush I ever had. How could you not?

Saturday, August 13, 2011

The Class: The Harder They Come

Hot Pepper Shrimp
Jerk Chicken
Baked Yams with Sweet Onions & Ginger
Caribbean Cole Slaw
Gizzada (Spiced Sweet Coconut Tart)

When I was a teenager, there was this weird little theater in the quiet suburb of Uniondale, New York called the Uniondale Mini-Cinema. Before the "midnight movie" craze hit the mainstream, this was one of those first experiments in letting young people, especially young people who were influenced by what was then known as "the counter-culture," and certainly those who had a love and reverence for movies, be allowed to program an actual movie theater.

Now remember this was before there were videotapes, or even cable TV. This was the only place where you could stay up all night and watch Marx Brothers movies, the new "concert" films like Woodstock or Jimi Plays Berkeley, and was a home for "outsider" filmmakers such as Robert Downey Sr. and John Waters. Later, after I had gone to seek my fortunes on the West Coast, it was one of the first theaters to do the whole Rocky Horror Picture Show thing. But it was also one of the first theaters to run The Harder They Come.