January 16, 2018


I finally saw THE KING’S SPEECH. I found it a good, solid movie with beautiful art direction and fine performances, (although it was Helena Bonham Carter as the Queen who most touched and moved me and amidst all that virtuoso acting they still were able to find the worst Winston Churchill impersonator in cinema history!) . I found the scenes with the King’s daughters, (the future Queen) Elizabeth and Margaret more engaging than the scenes with his therapist. Despite my profound anglophillia, all in all, it was a peculiarly unaffecting experience, even slightly distasteful. Britons are about to die at Dunkirk, under buzz bombs and V-2’s, on wounded and sinking battle ships and these ‘subjects’ are lauding and gushing over the King because he delivered a halting speech? Yeah, I know, he overcame a bad stutter, but come on! I guess the distortion of so-called ‘shared sacrifice’ hasn’t changed much in seventy years!… Who says actors are historically unimportant! One taught the titular head of England to speak, another taught the Reichsfuhrer how to command an audience and another led the free world at the fall of communism…Will we ever see the movie THE PRESIDENT’S WALK about FDR‘s doctor who misled him about his ability to ever walk again? Out of sympathy for the president and a respect for his unfounded optimism this physician never told him that swimming, exercise and nutrition would never overcome his handicap. It didn’t harm FDR and it was better for his mental state to be hopeful….I’ll be up in NYC again next week. Can’t wait to see that impressive POMPEII exhibit on 44th street at the Discovery Museum and will take Kyle to see Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter) on Broadway…Okay, perhaps the palm tree video of union demonstrators on FOXNEWS was not a deliberate lie. The California video was identified two minutes earlier in the segment. Perhaps it was sloppy TV journalism coupled with partisan overzealousness to drum into viewers that ‘union thugs’ are violent. But ask yourself: how would you feel if a broadcast showed the corpses of children killed in Vietnam or WW II early in a segment to illustrate civilian casualties in war. Later the story moves to a reporter in Kabul reporting on Petraeus’ apology for the killing of 9 Afghan children. Now they cut to these images of dead children over the report. Is that manipulative? Do you find that misleading?…Did you see ANY HUMAN HEART on PBSMasterpiece Theater? It started out impressive and got better and better as the main character aged. Jim Broadbent was heartbreaking and stunning as the old man. If you missed it try catching it on rerun or buy the DVD. Maybe it was because of my current age or circumstance but I found it immensely more affecting than either THE FIGHTER or THE KING’S SPEECH. You can watch it for free here until March 22nd: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/masterpiece/watch/index.html…
Fareed Zakaria’s GPS is the Sunday morning talk show for adults. I always learn something new watching or listening on I-pod…. So Chris Matthews now touts his early and enduring anti-Iraq war credentials. Has everyone forgotten his exultant declaration during the war: “We are ALL neo-cons now!”…. Guess who said this in 1994: “I just think North Dakota needs a new, fresh conservative voice. I think I could be that person.” (Answer at the end of the post)…. Doesn’t Charlie Sheen get tired of his ‘goddesses’? I mean, the night before is exciting but as Maureen McGovern sang: ‘There’s got to be a morning afterrrrrr….” (And that’s from someone who has blazed through plenty of exciting nights AND moaned through a lot of those painful morning afters!)… I think the reason so many conservatives call Obama a socialist is because there are no real socialists visible in American society today. Socialists used to get votes on the presidential ballot, on the airwaves and engage in the public debate. Norman Thomas, one of the most famous American socialists was William F. Buckley’s first guest on Firing Line…I saw THE ADJUSTMENT BUREAU, yesterday and it wasn’t as wonderful as the NYT review nor as bad as every other review would lead you to believe. It isn’t THE MATRIX, (Part one) or INCEPTION, closer to THE LAKE HOUSE. But I keep asking myself one question and it isn’t about the film’s wacky sci-fi cosmology: Would any guy find it cute if a girl you just met dropped your cell phone into a cup of coffee?!?!….That quote would be from mega-liberal Ed Schultz (Big Ed) of MSNBC who in 1994 touted himself as the ‘new, fresh conservative voice for his state.’ People change: Horowitz Hitchens and Kristol were Trotskyites, Dick Morris worked with Bill Clinton. I used to detest David Frum, now I find him (at times) inspirational. Reagan was a young leftist and later a union president. Hmmm, how have I changed politically over the years? Sounds like a topic for a future post….and why do the days seem so short in Florida!