Tuesday, December 06, 2016

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (2016) **

As a CGI spectacle and introduction to a series of films, this flick is ok. Would probably be better enjoyed as a binge with the next 4 films after they are completed. Redmayne affects a nearly inaudible accent/word-slur which becomes very annoying as the proceedings progress.

Friday, December 02, 2016

Andrew Sachs, Manuel from Fawlty Towers, dies aged 86 | Media | The Guardian

He became a household name in Britain as the hapless Manuel in the 1970s sitcom. Worried that he could not do a Spanish accent, Sachs initially wanted to play the role as a German.

But Cleese, who played Basil Fawlty, insisted that the character should be Spanish. He said despite his anxiety Sachs took to the role instantly.

Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Cleese said: “If you met him you would never think for a moment that he was a comedian, you would think he was a rather cultivated bank manager possibly retired, because he was quite quiet and poised and thoughtful. And then you stuck that moustache on him and he turned into a completely different human being. He was wonderful.”

Friday, November 25, 2016

Arrival (2016) **

A terrific first half is not enough to save this well designed take on classic 50's sci-fi, which is a shame since it's not a superhero flick and that's marvelous.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Finding Dory (2016) **

Technically impressive (though not nearly as much as the accompanying short) this exhausting hero-in-peril fish story is primarily for the 7 and under set.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Steve Bannon Trump Tower Interview: Trump's Strategist Plots "New Political Movement" | Hollywood Reporter

"Like [Andrew] Jackson's populism, we're going to build an entirely new political movement," he says. "It's everything related to jobs. The conservatives are going to go crazy. I'm the guy pushing a trillion-dollar infrastructure plan. With negative interest rates throughout the world, it's the greatest opportunity to rebuild everything. Ship yards, iron works, get them all jacked up. We're just going to throw it up against the wall and see if it sticks. It will be as exciting as the 1930s, greater than the Reagan revolution — conservatives, plus populists, in an economic nationalist movement."

The Lobster (2015) ****

Exceptional direction from Yorgos Lanthimos of an allegorical tale about love and how to find it. Or something like that.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Trump in the White House: An Interview With Noam Chomsky

On November 8, the most powerful country in world history, which will set its stamp on what comes next, had an election. The outcome placed total control of the government -- executive, Congress, the Supreme Court -- in the hands of the Republican Party, which has become the most dangerous organization in world history.

Apart from the last phrase, all of this is uncontroversial. The last phrase may seem outlandish, even outrageous. But is it? The facts suggest otherwise. The Party is dedicated to racing as rapidly as possible to destruction of organized human life. There is no historical precedent for such a stand.

Wednesday, November 09, 2016

3quarksdaily: An American Tragedy

The election of Donald Trump to the Presidency is nothing less than a tragedy for the American republic, a tragedy for the Constitution, and a triumph for the forces, at home and abroad, of nativism, authoritarianism, misogyny, and racism. Trump’s shocking victory, his ascension to the Presidency, is a sickening event in the history of the United States and liberal democracy. On January 20, 2017, we will bid farewell to the first African-American President—a man of integrity, dignity, and generous spirit—and witness the inauguration of a con who did little to spurn endorsement by forces of xenophobia and white supremacy. It is impossible to react to this moment with anything less than revulsion and profound anxiety.

I don't know, I'm TRYING to feel the hyperbole but perhaps I've become inured to it since November 7, 2000.