Sunday, February 11, 2018

Around the Blogosphere This Week

Miscellaneous bits of news and fun stuff from around the internet...

...A review copy is on the way to me of MOVIE NIGHTS WITH THE REAGANS by Mark Weinberg: "Former special advisor and press secretary to President Ronald Reagan shares an intimate, behind-the-scenes look inside the Reagan presidency—told through the movies they watched together every week at Camp David." Sounds like a fun read. It's out from Simon and Schuster on February 27th. (March 2018 Update: Here is my review of a most enjoyable book.)

...Last evening I revisited SULLY (2016), which I originally reviewed on its opening night in 2016. Such a good movie! I was really struck on this viewing by the excellent performance of Aaron Eckhart as the copilot; you can see in his eyes he is not having a good day over the Hudson River (!) yet he manages to maintain focus and do everything needed to support the captain.

...Among newer movies, I especially love the Marvel series of films and have written 17 Marvel reviews in less than two and a half years; they're linked at the end of this review. The next review, BLACK PANTHER (2018), is coming in just a few days, with AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR (2018) due out in May and ANT-MAN AND THE WASP (2018) opening in early July. I was thus delighted by this "class photo" celebrating the first ten years of Marvel Studios. Over 80 actors and filmmakers gathered for the shoot last October; everywhere one looks in the photo are the well-known faces who populate the Marvel Cinematic Universe. What fun! A few actors are missing, especially from the THOR films, but it's quite an impressive photo. Click on it to enlarge to full screen size, or a second click on the photo at this site will enable scrolling around to better see the faces. There's also a one-minute video of the photo shoot on YouTube.

...I'd been watching BAKED IN VERMONT on Food Network for a couple weeks before I did some Googling and learned that baker Gesine Bullock-Prado is the younger sister of actress Sandra Bullock. I just received a copy of Bullock-Prado's memoir MY LIFE FROM SCRATCH, previously published under the title CONFECTIONS OF A CLOSET MASTER BAKER. It's about her transition from working behind the scenes in Hollywood production to life in Vermont in an entirely new profession, as the owner of a bakery.

...Here's a great story about a Melbourne retiree who created a free neighborhood movie theater in his garage. Wish I could visit!

...My friend Aurora has interviewed Illeana Douglas for her site Once Upon a Screen. Illeana discusses her love of film at length, and I was glad to hear that she'll be returning once more to the TCM Classic Film Festival this spring!

...In my last roundup I shared info on the wonderful Republic Pictures series at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Farran Smith Nehme (aka the Self-Styled Siren) has written a marvelous article on the series for the Village Voice, and there was also a nice piece by Caroline Golum at Screen Slate. It sure sounds like Bill Elliott's HELLFIRE (1949) and Mona Freeman's THAT BRENNAN GIRL (1946) are must-sees.

...The latest stories on MoviePass: How it hopes to make money, and its new lower price (?!) for annual plan members. MoviePass just hit 2 million subscribers.

...Some of the first info is now out on Disney's streaming service, which will debut about 18 months from now. No R-rated movies.

...Recently added to my Kindle: CODE GIRLS: THE UNTOLD STORY OF THE AMERICAN WOMEN CODE BREAKERS OF WORLD WAR II by Liza Mundy.

...Amazon apparently plans to compete with UPS and FedEx in the shipping business. The company is also testing free two-hour grocery delivery for Amazon Prime members in four cities.

..."In Defense of Physical Media: Why You Should Keep Buying Blu-rays and DVDs" by Matt Goldberg for Collider.

...Speaking of physical media, Best Buy is removing CDs from its stores as of July 1st. And Target is discussing only selling them on basically a consignment basis in the future.

...Notable Passings: John Gavin has passed away at 86. My earliest memory of him is seeing THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE (1967) in a theater when I was very young. Other credits I enjoyed him in include QUANTEZ (1957) and IMITATION OF LIFE (1959). His impressive career also included serving as President Reagan's Ambassador to Mexico for half a decade, from 1981 to 1986. He's survived by his wife, actress Constance Towers, and children...FRASIER is one of my top five all-time favorite TV shows, so I was greatly saddened to learn of the death of John Mahoney at the age of 77. FRASIER star Kelsey Grammer eulogized Mahoney in a touching Tweet...Actress Connie Sawyer has died at 105. She was considered the "oldest working actress" in Hollywood; her last credits were in 2014...Former child actress Ann Gillis (seen at right) has passed on at 90. Gillis played Becky Thatcher in David O. Selznick's THE ADVENTURES OF TOM SAWYER (1938). She also played Susan Hayward as a child in BEAU GESTE (1939) and appeared in numerous other films throughout the late '30s and '40s...L.A. Dodgers great Wally Moon has passed away at 87.

...For more recent links on classic movies and more, please check out my January 21st link roundup.

Have a great week!

4 Comments:

OpenID Walter Severs said...

Laura, thanks for the heads up article, "In Defense of Physical Media: Why You Should Keep Buying Blu-rays and DVD's" written by Matt Goldberg. I agree with him and also, Leonard Maltin said to hang on to your DVD collections.

3:42 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

Glad you enjoyed it! I'm definitely continuing to invest in physical media. Streaming is fun but I consider it an "extra" compared to actually owning DVDs, Blu-rays, or even VHS (which I still watch).

Best wishes,
Laura

3:50 PM  
OpenID Walter Severs said...

Laura. I agree with you and I also have the old VHS tapes. I have things that I taped on VHS that I will never be able to get again. The Woody Strode quote about riding in Monument Valley, if my memory serves me right, came from an interview that he gave that I taped on VHS.

You have a really good blog.

4:05 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

Yes, exactly! When I reviewed RIDERS OF THE NORTHWEST MOUNTED last weekend, I pulled out my VHS recording, which predates the DVD-R recorder I've used for several years now. If that movie has aired again in the last few years, I missed it!

Thank you for the very kind words, it's always gratifying to hear that someone is enjoying my blog, and it's great to share the love of film with others! I hope you'll enjoy visiting again.

Best wishes,
Laura

4:17 PM  

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