Without backup singers, a band, or much in the way of pyrotechnics beyond a few candelabras and some swirling digital graphics, Prince commanded the stage at Atlanta’s Fox Theater exactly a week ago. It was just the pop icon and a piano, those who were in the audience that evening said. “It was more like……
From a schoolmate of mine. I share her sentiments.
2016 has started with great losses to the music industry, most notably David Bowie, Glenn Frey and Maurice White. Three artists who were a major part in the songbook of the lives of kids in my generation, the 70’s.
While we have suffered other notable losses this year, the loss of these three forces hit home pretty hard. Writer Marc Eliot, in an op ed on CNN.com, wrote “For people who came up in that time, the death of Frey — and earlier this month the death of David Bowie — comes as a reality check, a resounding reminder that the days of “Take it Easy” and the promise of “One of these Nights” are long behind us. Instead, music, the blood of our youth, has somehow been replaced by mortgages, credit cards, spouses, children, divorces, alimony, expanding waistlines and diminished dreams.”
While I do agree their passings are a reminder that…
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I know that today, some people are thinking of Groundhog Day (which is one of my favorite movies). But I’m thinking a little ahead, to Valentine’s Day. (Note: Only 12 shopping days left.) In PRC’s usual geeky view of pop culture, here are four movies that involve an unusual take on romance:
This very popular movie features Patrick Swayze, as the ghost of the title, with Demi Moore as his lover. This movie also contains an oft-parodied romantic pottery making scene. Ghost is also the reason why, to this day, I cannot stand to watch Tony Goldwyn in anything (sorry, Scandal fans).
Whoopi Goldberg played a very funny, yet believable, psychic in the movie. She deserved her Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for this role.
Ghost also revived the oldies music standard, the Righteous Brothers’ Unchained Melody.
Love at First Bite (1979)
This disco-era movie starred George Hamilton as a well-tanned Dracula and Susan Saint James as Cindy Sondheim, the object of his desire. Richard Benjamin, as Dr. Jeffrey Rosenberg, is the third piece of this love triangle. My favorite scene in the movie? When Dr. Rosenberg tries to kill Dracula:
Dr. Jeffrey Rosenberg: [triumphantly] Well, Count, what do you say to that?
[Pulls out a Star of David]
Dr. Jeffrey Rosenberg: [Dracula hides his face, then realizes what it is and removes his hands]
Count Dracula: I would say, leave Cindy alone and find yourself a nice Jewish girl, Doctor!
Dr. Jeffrey Rosenberg: Huh?
[looks at star]
Dr. Jeffrey Rosenberg: Ah shit! It’s the other one, isn’t it?
Love at First Bite also features a great disco song, Alicia Bridges’ I Love the Night Life.
The great sci-fi movie director John Carpenter directed this human/alien (in human form) love story. It had an unsuccessful TV show spin-off. I only have four words to say about this movie: Jeff Bridges. In 1984.
This movie does have songs, but none (in my opinion) worth noting here.
Did I mention that Jeff Bridges is in this movie?
Superman II (1980)
I’ve noticed that people either love or hate this movie. I belong to the first category. As with all things Superman, there are those people who try to read deeper meeting into this movie. I am not one of those people. Its enjoyable as what it is on the surface – a romantic movie featuring a superhero, his witty reporter girlfriend and some really good actors (Gene Hackman, Terrence Stamp) playing villains.
Two lessons from this movie? Sometimes it’s not about what you want, it’s about what’s best for the world. Also, not having superpowers sucks! (Sorry, I don’t know what the statute of limitations is for spoilers.)
While Superman II doesn’t have a stand out song, the first Christopher Reeve movie, Superman (1978), does feature the pretty song, Maureen McGovern’s Can You Read My Mind?
Other than Ghost (which is available on Netflix), unfortunately it doesn’t appear that any of the movies are available on a streaming service. This might be the time to check out your local library (or Netflix DVD) for availability on DVD.
In light of Yvonne Craig’s death, I was going to write a blog post. But I read this post by Dennis R. Upkins, and realized that he said it much better than I could have. A great tribute!
Dedicated to the late Yvonne Craig
It’s a shame how much Barbara Gordon/Batgirl is perhaps one of the most underrated characters in comics and pop culture. Not surprising that many dismiss her as little more than a “female Robin” or a lesser spinoff character of the caped crusader.
But the astute observer will note that by being tied to the Batman mythos, Barbara Gordon has arguably made more appearances in mainstream media than any other comic book super heroine, including Wonder Woman, thus perhaps making Batgirl the most publicized comic book super heroine to date.
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Judging from the trailer, this movie looks good. The mining disaster was a “glued to media” moment for a lot of us back in 2010. In a different vein, Lou Diamond Phillips is really a “citizen of the world”!
“That’s not a rock, that’s the heart of the mountain. She finally broke.” Warner Bros has dropped the official trailer for The 33, Patricia Riggen’s film about the 2010 Chilean miner drama that trapped 33 men for 69 days at the bottom of a gold and copper mine in Copiapo, Chile.
Antonio Banderas stars as Mario Sepulveda, a miner who becomes trapped on the eve of his retirement. Lou Diamond Phillips, Juliette Binoche, Gabriel Byrne and Rodrigo Santoro also star. Mikko Alanne, Craig Borten and Michael Thomas adapted the screenplay from Hector Tobar’s book. Mike Medavoy, Edward McGurn and Robert Katz are producing.
The pic hits theaters on November 13. Check out the trailer above.
Can we please take a long break from Batman and Spiderman? There are so many other heroes out there!
Today’s the 30th anniversary of the day Ferris Bueller and his friends Cameron and Skye ditched school in “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”. Ferris is definitely one of film’s best antiheroes. Here are some others.
1. Ferris Bueller: A teen charmer who told us that “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” Known for using his widespread popularity for sympathy, and using his friends to get what he wants, Ferris Bueller is the perfect teenage anti-hero who made it seem socially acceptable to ditch school. Despite lying to his parents about being sick, convincing his best friend to steal his dad’s Ferrari, impersonating a customer for a dining reservation, Bueller’s manipulation was used for one good thing, Carpe Diem.
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