Well well. I got a new writing gig today, very very cool. Details to follow when my first piece is accepted instead of returned with a shovelful of pig offal and a note saying please. Really. No. Otherwise an ordinary day two columns in the morning, under duress. I was so speedy after finishing yesterdays work I couldnt sleep, and was up until 1:15 watching The Towering Inferno. Yes, yes, its krep but this was the HD version, which changes EVERYTHING. Now you can see the orange shag erupt in brilliant detail. I practically had to throw myself down the stairs to put myself to sleep. Woke after 6 1/2 hours, girded myself for the day ahead, and got back to work.
So thin gruel today, since my life was duller than usual, and Im exhausted, and I really need to know how the Towering Inferno ends, again. For what its worth:
The blogosphere has been alight with the merry song stylings of Ward Churchill, whose act of promiscuous idiocy got him in trouble with those who dont believe the janitors and busboys in the World Trade Center actually deserved their fate. About that nonsense I have nothing to say here, but I did note this. His picture:
It's . . . MATTHIAS! Different chin, but the zombie plague will do that to you.
A correspondent asked the other day whether the Chastening Perry Head ought not to be in black and white, like the show itself; I disagree. It has more power in living color, I think. You might ask: is there an opposite for the CPH? Yes.
Examples: Alien Vs. Predator, which I saw last weekend. I knew it was bad. The DVD box might as well have said Buckets O Shite! Roger Ebert on the front in 72 pt type, and I still would have rented it, because, well, Alien! Vs.! Predator! Even though I didnt much like the Predator movies, and hated the fourth Alien like a retinal cyst, I had to see it. Got about one-third through it before overcome with boredom and disinterest, and the nagging sense that the director did not take the source material seriously. No! you say. True. Apparently the chest-bursters incubation period is now one minute, for todays attention-deficit audiences. Those leisurely days of waiting ten minutes before the chest cracks open are gone, alas, unless Merchant-Ivory directs the next one. So, Alien Vs. Predator:
Then I watched Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow.
Period. Doubled. Squared. Times Pi. Say no more.
Not much in the way of Noir reviews this week. Watched a cheapy called He Walked By Night, which may have been a sequel to He Drove By Night, He Put His Car in the Ditch By Night and He Took the Bus by Night, for all I know or care. Starred Richard Basehart as the bad guy he was an electronics thief at first, then a stick-up man. In both cases . . . he walked by night. Had a notable cameo from a fellow who appeared in another Noir review in an equally small part: Sam Drucker, from Hooterville:
The fellow looked 65 the day he was born, it seems. One thing I noticed was the tunelessness of the music. Its a style you often heard in the 40s and 50s: unpleasant square-shouldered brass that conveyed grim doom and drama. It all sounds the same; its as if they baked huge pans of the stuff and carved off a new slice everything they needed something that said This is the city. (Which reminds me: He Walked By Night also had Jack Webb as a lab tech, and its early Webb before he put on his frozen Friday face; he wears a half-smile and juices every line with casual insinuation. Creepy.) Heres the opening bars of the theme. Beware! Its super-catchy! Cant get it out of your head without Brillo and Bon-Ami, I tell you.
And now back to the Towering Inferno, which just sucks. But duty calls.
Perm link: here.