Sunday, November 20, 2005

On Film

I spent the day with Mike in restaurants, taxi cabs and cinemas, and over thirteen and a half hours we spanned Seattle, managing a fine brunch at Lola, panang curry at Phuket on Queen Anne, five movies that were worth seeing, and a confession by an East African cab driver who is a descendent of the lost tribe of Ireland. “I thought I was black all my life until my DNA test and they told me I was Irish. When I found out I was white I changed my last name to Patrick and became a Catholic,” he said, crossing himself and adding a “praise the Lord” in for good measure.

Mr. Patrick found out that the ship bearing his ancestors left Ireland for America but that the ship took a wrong turn and ended up in Africa. He suspects perhaps they were actually bound for Australia, and that his forefathers were criminals.

It might have made a good movie.

At any rate, of the five movies we saw today (none were about teenage wizards, thank you) I have to put George Clooney’s Good Night, and Good Luck at the top of the list. In fact, I think it’s one of the finest films I have seen all year. And if you want to put present-day politics aside, it’s a tightly-executed telling of Edward R. Murrow’s coverage of the McCarthy hearings, well-scripted and superbly cast. David Strathairn is outstanding as Murrow – a crisp, understated and very compelling performance. A nod, too, to Robert Downey, Jr. (it’s good to see him busy again), and George Clooney, who plays Fred Friendly in the movie, excels as co-writer and director as well. The black and white photography is outstanding.

And I cannot close this review without pointing out that Dianne Reeves’ jazz soundtrack was exquisite. Like metled butter. Sweet as honey. That good. Really.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Halloween Part Three

Why is it that Peppermint Patty and Marcy never appear in “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown?” They are in everything else...


Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Halloween Part Two

"There are three things I have learned never to discuss with other people: religion, politics and the Great Pumpkin." -Linus Van Pelt