The latest trailer of the greatly anticipated “The Dark Knight Rises” is now being shown before most screenings of “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows.” This theatrical trailer is the first substantial exposition of the characters, setting, and snippets of plot so far. Likewise a six minute opening prologue, which has been playing in select IMAX showings of “Mission: Impossible- Ghost protocol” as well as floating around the internet, gives the first extensive depiction of this film’s main villain, Bane, played by Tom Hardy.
With all of this buzz and excitement circulating around the forth coming end of Christopher Nolan’s Batman saga, I have decided to take a look back at the humble roots of some of images and icons of Batman.
Posters- the public face of any movie, helps portay the tone of the film as well as show who’s actually in the film.
This was the poster of the 1966 film Batman, which was the first big screen incarnation of the batman or as the poster touts, “For the first time on the motion picture screen in color,” an apt description. I learned this wasn’t actually the first Batman movie. There was series of serial films made in the 1940s.
The poster itself has a disjointed visual theme. The art team who put it together must not have all been on the same page, half the poster is live action stills of the protagonists, antagonists, and two Bat-means of conveyance. The other half of the poster is comprised of cartoon renderings apparently of five anonymous bad guys who have been clobbered by the Adam West and Burt Ward, Batman and Robin. This quaint little poster does a great job portraying the campiness of the film and the earliest portrayal of Batman.
Holy Crap. Those were the words that went through my head the first time I saw this poster. “The Dark Knight Rises” will supposedly be the last Batman film Nolan will direct and Christian Bale will star in, and is apparently a definitive end to the Bruce Wayne story. That taken into account this poster reflects the dark gritty foreboding of an actual end of a Batman story which has never been done on film.
The Batmobile- is one of the mainstays of the Batman universe, it embodies the futuristic side of the caped crusader.
This was the original batmobile. This is the first Bat car which Adam West drove around Gotham in the 1960s television show as well as the 1966 film. Based on a 1955 Lincoln Futura Show Car, this bat car is exactly what a 1960s Bruce Wayne would want as a stylish posh crime busting vehicle. Like the poster, this earliest batmobile fits perfectly with the lighthearted camp of the series.
As most Quincy residents should recall, earlier this year we got to see firsthand what Nolan plans on including in the bat mobile department. The Tumbler, featured in “Batman Begins,” “The Dark Knight,” and now “The Dark Knight Rises” is according to Lucius Fox (Batman’s tech guy), “She was built as a bridging vehicle. During combat, two of these would jump over a river, towing cables.” This piece of repurposes military hardware fits well into the realism of the newest series. The sight of an armored desert camouflage vehicle in a major American city might be subtlety used by the film makers to elicit a sense of fear and panic from an audience which is all too used to seeing similarly designed vehicles rolling down the main streets of Cairo, Damascus, and Bagdad.
Alfred Pennyworth- The constant loyal aid to the Wayne family and present in almost every rendering of Batman.
Michael Cain, more please.
Robin, the classic batman sidekick.
Morgan Freeman as Lucuis Fox: he looks out for Wayne Enterprises, supplies batman with new weapons and technology, but probably doesn’t look that good in a pair of green shorts.
The holidays are a great time to catch up with family, friends, and well wishers.
The holidays are also a great time to ignore all those people and go see a movie. Here are some movies that I am looking forward to seeing this holiday season.
“Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows”
This sequel to the 2009 re-envisioning of the classic Sherlock Holmes universe looks to be just as action packed as its predecessor. There are explosions, slow motion, and slow motion explosions. Based on the trailer the movie looks to include the faintly realistic Victorian era fight sequences that helped make the last movie fun to watch. Another factor drawing me to see this movie is the on screen rapport between Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson (played by Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law respectably).
While this latest version of the Sherlock Holmes saga is much different from other incarnations—namely such classics as the 1922 silent film version, the 2010 BBC mini-series “Sherlock”, or my personal favorite “The Great Mouse Detective”—I am excited to see the ongoing portrayal of this literary and film classic.
“The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”
This film is the first part of an English language reboot of a Swedish film and novel trilogy, Män som hatar kvinnor. I know very little about this trilogy aside from the fact that it was originally a Swedish book by author Stieg Larsson, that it was translated into English, and that it is by all accounts very very good.
From the synopsis that I have read and the trailers that I have seen the plot revolves around the search for a missing girl and a murder investigation conducted by a journalist and a computer hacking, tattoo having, dramatically compelling all around genius.
The investigative journalist is played by Daniel Craig in the English version and Mikael Nyqvist in the Swedish version. Nygvist is starring as the villain in the newly released “Mission: Impossible-Ghost Protocol.” The titular protagonist with the dragon tattoo is played by Rooney Mara in English and Noomi Rapace in Swedish. Mara was most recently featured in “The Social Network,” which was directed by David Fincher, the director of the English “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.” Coincidentally Rapace is starring as the female lead in “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows.”
“Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy”
Since this past June I have been looking forward to this one movie more than any other coming out in 2011. As seems to be the trend with the good films this holiday season “Tinker, Tailor, Soilder, Spy” is a recreation of both a novel and a 1979 BBC miniseries starring Alec Guinness.
This latest rendering of the original John le Carré novel features a very well rounded british cast Gary Oldman, Colin Firth, John Hurt, Tom Hardy, Mark Strong, and Benedict Cumberbatch. Coincidentally Cumberbatch stars in the previously mentioned BBC miniseries “Sherlock.” Likewise Oldman and Hardy are both starring in next summer’s excruciatingly anticipated third installment of Christopher Nolan’s Batman saga: The Dark Knight Rises.
This classic cold war high espionage spy story has me most excited out of these three films. I read the novel this summer and ever since then I have been waiting and hoping to see it. It was released in the US on Dec. 9 and I counted down the days till that day. Then I looked online. The movie had a limited release to only four theaters in the states, I was not pleased. Currently there are 50 theaters playing “Tinker, Tailor,” mostly on the east and west coasts. Focus Theaters plans on a wide release Jan. 13. I can’t wait.
Quincy theaters and showings are available here.
Here’s how my weekend was supposed to shake down:
I was supposed to get off work from my day job at 4 p.m. on Friday and bartend at One Restaurant at 5 p.m. until 1 in the morning. Usually we all go to The Phoenix after we shut the bar down and blow our tip money. Get rowdy.
Saturday I had the same schedule, more or less. Saturdays are my favorite nights to bartend because One is always packed with reservations and good regulars at the bar. Then I was supposed to cover the Bret Michaels concert for the The Local Q on Sunday. Sounds like a great a weekend right? Well, the reason I say it was “supposed to shake down” this way is because it didn’t.
On Thursday night I caught one of the worst stomach bugs I’ve ever had. I was as sick as a dog, and my doc put me on weekend house arrest.
But I’m not the type to stay down and out. It’s just not in my nature. I admit I rested most of the weekend. I took the opportunity to catch up on some new albums by my favorite musicians. I didn’t have to download anything illegally or disobey my doc’s orders and drive to the record store. I actually used this website called Grooveshark (www.groveshark.com). If you create an account, you can search almost any artist and create playlists just like you would in itunes, only YOU DON’T HAVE TO BUY ANYTHING. That’s right. Creating an account is completely free; the music is streamed live on the internet so you don’t have to buy the mp3s; you have complete control over the music you want to listen to; best of all, no commercials. I’ve found some of the most obscure artists. It’s one of the greatest things on the internet right now. Literally.
Saturday was a different story. I was getting a little strength back. My girlfriend had to work, so I called up my buddy to hang out and watch some stuff on Netflix. I purchased a subscription to Netflix for $7.99/month, and I can stream thousands of movies, documentaries and commercialless TV shows in season sequence right from my computer, which I have hooked up directly to my television.
My buddy’s been real into conspiracy theories lately, so I thought he might like to check out a documentary called Collapse. It’s basically a videotaped interview with a man named Michael C. Ruppert, who explains his findings and theories about the collapse of modern industrialized civilization. Unfortunately for my state of mind, Mike seems to be a very smart and experienced man. I won’t dive into his background. If you want to know more, do some research or watch the documentary. If I had to give you the most concise synopsis I could, I would tell you that Mike has spent 30 years analyzing mainstream media and world economics. He states that we conduct our lives as if our economy will perpetually progress, but we must face the reality that our economy is fueled entirely by fossil fuels, which are a finite resource. Once those resources run out, the world economy will implode, and, essentially, industrialized civilization will collapse.
You have to take this kind of theory with a grain of salt. You can’t let fear run your life, but Mike does have some good points. You might want to know how to live off the land; grow food without chemical fertilizers or genetically enhanced seeds. Invest in organic seeds. You might want to know how to build your own shelter. I feel the important message is to be resourceful.
I know I’m resourceful. While my buddy wanted to drink of few beers while we were watching the documentary, I knew that would tear my stomach up and possibly make me sicker. My doc told me to drink white soda. So I used my noggin, and we compromised. If you mix white soda with Evan Williams Honey Reserve whiskey, it won’t tear up your stomach, and it tastes awesome. Simple recipe: fill a rocks glass with ice, add 1oz or so of Honey Reserve and fill the glass
the rest of the way with 7Up.
Now, I wouldn’t recommend everyone drink when they’re ill. I know my body, I knew how I felt and I knew I could handle it. Plus, I only had a drink or two. I still took it easy. Remember, drinking while you are sick can dehydrate you, so you probably shouldn’t do it at all.
So, what’s the point to this whole blog?
Simple: You live in an age where media and information are easier to access than they have ever been. Ever. Take advantage of it. Challenge your mind. Learn Something. I pay next to nothing to access all the movies, music, news and print media (ebooks) I want. I was supposed to have a very socially stimulating weekend. Sometimes life throws you a curve ball. Instead of burying my head in the sand, I had a very intellectually stimulating weekend even though I had to spend most of it lying on the couch.
I think the title of this blog describes how we’ve all felt since Tuesday night. I have only left my house to walk to work or shovel snow. I live on a snow emergency route so I left my car buried in a parking lot a half-mile away. The front of my house looks like an entrance to the yeti cave on Hoth. It’s ridiculous, but hey, blizzards do that. So, just like every Quincyan without a 4×4 V8 Hemi Diesel Super Cab truck, I’ve been stranded in my living room, trying not to die of complete boredom.
What’s worse? A blizzard sparks this carnal excitement deep down in my core. I was jumping around all Tuesday evening, opening and closing the front door, looking out the blinds, watching God blow the almighty winds and snow. We witnessed history and the power of Mother Nature. That’s always a big deal. But, on the other hand, I knew that after it was said and done, I would have to heave shovel full after monotonous shovel full of snow off the sidewalk. How did I handle this impending doom? The only way I could: watching the newest adventure flick I could get my hands on — 127 Hours — while the storm raged outside.
Belinda and I were not alone. Fellow blogger and friend, Clint Begley, made the trek through the blizzard to watch the movie with us. He showed up wearing snow shoes, boots, snowboarding pants over jeans, a down sweater, a wind shell, a beanie, a scarf and snowboarding goggles. He was also using trekking poles. Apparently, that’s what you need to walk four or five blocks in a blizzard.
We were instantly taken away from the frigid winds of the Midwest to the dry, red rocks of Robbers Roost in Canyonlands National Park, Utah. 127 Hours is the biographical account of a hiker and climber named Aron Ralston, played by James Franco, who left his home for a climbing trip in 2003. Aron made the grave mistake of leaving alone without telling anyone where he was going and during a climb through Blue John Canyon, he lost his footing and fell, pinning his arm between a large boulder and the canyon wall. Over the five days that followed, Aron fought hunger, dehydration and exhaustion before amputating his own arm with a dull pocket knife to free himself — yep! That’s right. I mentioned this is a true story, right? Aron (the real guy) said the movie is “so factually accurate it is as close to a documentary as you can get and still be a drama.”
I have to admit that I was skeptical at the beginning. The scene when Aron’s arm gets pinned is about 20 minutes into the movie. My exact reaction was a gasp, my gut sank, I winced and then my logic kicked in and I asked myself: wait, isn’t there an hour and a half left? I didn’t know if James Franco and a boulder were enough to keep me interested.
Turns out, they were. Franco’s performance was excellent and the movie really forced me to confront some eerie questions, especially as a lover of the outdoors. How far will a person go to survive? How long does it take for the effects of desperation to set in? How resilient am I? And, maybe the most important question, what does hopelessness do to the human spirit? 127 hours captures some of the most basic of human emotions — fear, denial and guilt — at the rawest of moments. Add in Utah’s beautiful scenery and you have one of the most riveting true stories of a man’s triumph in the face of utter desperation in recent years.
***Just a warning: this guy CUTS HIS OWN ARM OFF (in real life and the movie). It’s graphic and not for the faint at heart.
Also, if you are interested, you can check out Aron’s autobiography, Between a Rock and a Hard Place, which was released September of 2004.
If you are going to sit in and watch a movie with your girlfriend, you have this sort of obligation to pick out a chick flick every once and a while. Girls like that mushy stuff, right? They also like those froofy chicken fettuccine alfredo dinners. Well, I recently discovered one of the best date compromises on the planet. Just follow my instructions:
1) Invite your girlfriend over for a movie night (you romantic dog, you). But this time, you should actually plan on watching the movie. No, it’s not “Lethal Weapon 4,” “Hard Boiled” or “The Expendables.” It’s a chick flick — kind of.
2) Rent Michael Cera’s relatively new movie, “Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World.”
3) On the way home, stop by Little Caesers at the corner of 27th and Broadway and pick up a Hot N’ Ready sausage, pepperoni or cheese pizza for $5. I know what you’re thinking: “Pizza is pretty lame, dude.” But you just bought a chick flick! It’s all about the compromise, so you’re golden.
4) You can light some candles if you want. I wouldn’t recommend it. There is just something unromantically jarring about a slice of sausage pizza grease-glistening by candlelight. Just leave the lights off. It makes the movie better anyway.
5) Red wine? Sure, why not. I recommend Barefoot. It’s cheap and good. Beer? That’s pushing it. Pabst Blue Ribbon? Dude, there’s a time and place for everything. Although you should regularly stock your fridge with PBR, this is not the time for it.
6) Now you’re ready to snuggle. Just pop the DVD in and hit play.
So why “Scott Pilgrim?” It’s a valid question. I could be luring you into a trap. This could be like that night she brought over Sweet Home Alabama without warning you.
Well, the movie really is a chick flick at its most basic level. It’s about this semi-nerdy Canadian guy (Scott Pilgrim, duh!) who falls for this semi-damaged, punker American girl named Ramona Flowers. Here’s the hook: She has seven evil ex-boyfriends that Scott must defeat in order to date her. Scott also plays bass in a gritty, garage rock band called The Sex-Bob-Ombs. The movie is full of good rock music, hundreds of video game references and awesome matrix-meets-comic-book-kung-fu fight scenes. It’s all dude stuff.
The movie is based on a comic book series written by Bryan Lee O’Malley. The cinematography was one of the coolest parts. All the scene and time transitions were pretty inventive, tons of special effects and plenty of close-up and side by side frame shots. At first, I thought the director wanted it to look like a comic book. I was absolutely sure when he overtly emphasized onomatopoeia (like ZWAAAARF!!!) flashed across the screen during the epic battle scenes.
I almost forgot to mention, the movie has one of the Culkin brothers in it. Not Macaulay, not Rory, but Kieran. Awesome, right? I didn’t even know there was a third one. What a triple threat.
I have given you all the knowledge you need. Go forth and impress. This is one of those rare moments where you get to look like a sweetheart for doing something that you like.
Saturday night was an oxymoron of sorts — a stay-in double feature of camp, schlock and pulp with a taste of high-end libation. We had the opportunity to try Opus One for the first time, as well as a 2008 Caymus Special Selection Cabernet Sauvignon, both pricey wines at your local apothecary. Worth it? We shall see.
Accompaniments included organic muenster, pepper jack and cranberry goat cheese and an assortment of other snacks. The double bill: “Piranha 3D” starring Ving Rhames, Elisabeth Shue and Doc Brown (“Marty! You made it!”) and “Salt” starring Angelina Jolie and Chew-uh-Chewital-ah-Chewy — the guy from “Love Actually” and “Serenity” (the great “Firefly” sci-fi masterpiece. Browncoats, d’you reckon so? Shiny.).
We decanted the wines an hour-plus before tasting, which allowed us to enjoy much of “Piranha” with a glass of Chardonnay and a sip or Armagnac. If you find yourself sitting down to watch this film, you probably already know what you’re in for: “Jaws“ but, instead with piranhas and Ving mowin‘ a ton down with a speedboat propeller. It’s stupid, gory, hilarious and gratuitous, with a subplot of Elisabeth Shue passing on the duty of an adventure in babysitting to her teenage son — ho-ho.
Soon into the film, the Opus One was poured. We’d heard a lot about it, but never had the opportunity to try it till now. Rumors of doctors buying it by the case have been floating around for years, though I’ve never asked a doc for the truth. Other claims include: “It’s spectacular,” “It’s overrated,” “It tastes like any other Mondavi red wine,” “It’s the same as a cheap Mondavi wine, only packaged in a different bottle and stamped with an expensive label.”
We tasted. My experience was that it had a smooth start, shy flavors and a chalky finish. It was so dry, it left me guzzling water. Too dry. And I love dry. Victoria was surprised at my reaction; she liked the wine. My verdict: save your money and buy a bottle of Abstract or The Prisoner. But, don’t take my word for it. Find out which doctors have cases of Opus One and make friends.
Next was “Salt” and the Caymus Special Selection Cab. “Salt” is a decent action thriller with maybe one too many shots of Angelina kicking herself off the wall to punch an adversary. Lots of intrigue, narrow escapes and the reintroduction of Russians as bad guys amidst a plot that took me back to the ‘80s.
The Caymus poured and tasted far exceeded the taste of the Opus One. Victoria disagrees, but I found it to have more flavor, less chalk, and it left me wanting more. Plus, it’s a great deal less expensive than the Opus One. My verdict: Better, but I’d still save your money, if I were you, and go for that bottle of Abstract.
Saturday — Opened two bad bottles of old wine while watching “The Other Guys” and “The Social Network.” Then we felt the last breath of Christmas at the Birsic White Elephant party. Awesome food, great people, I drank a bucket of Dos Equis and shoved calories into every corner of my stomach. Delicious. Our collective gift was a pint of steamed rice from First Wok and a pair of Booty Pops, which is the underwear that makes your booty POP!
Sunday — Quickly shot a short film featuring a couple of characters from our upcoming feature just for fun. Thank you, Thyme Square, for letting us stay an extra hour to get through the material. Made Michael Mitchell stand in the freezing cold for an hour and make faces at me. Greg, Les, Mike, and Keith were terrific. Note to self: As a director, suck less.
Came home and tried to watch the Golden Globes, but fell asleep.
Monday — Fell down into the pit of despair and freaked out like a loon in a straight jacket, but was able to pull myself out of it and struck the Tim Robbins freedom pose in the rain from “Shawshank.” I declared this week to be the worst week of the year.
Tuesday — Went to Jorge the Crook’s to pick up small plates and had a scotch with a splash of water while I waited. Bartender said: “I’m serious about my splashes” which ended up being true because the scotch had the perfect amount of “splash.” Took the food home to finish the final five episodes of Fox’s canceled “Kitchen Confidential,” co-starring Nicholas Brendon, a.k.a. Xander on “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.”
Wednesday — A client called to cancel Thursday’s shoot in St. Louis due to the impending Wampa attack, which meant that I could slow down and concentrate on other biz (is it tacky and lazy just to say “biz“?). Met Susan Pierson and Brandi from KHQA at Martinis for drinks and popcorn and a meat tray — no, the kind from Butcher Block. Ally from the former Ally & Company was there putting on a Cartise show, so Victoria looked through Ally’s stash and picked up a sexy dress, which I was all too happy to pay for.
Thursday — Practically forced Victoria to participate in the Core disc of P90X, which led to a volley of insults cast upon trainer, Tony Horton, for his goofy coaching style. It’s now three o’clock in the afternoon and I’m editing a video for Shottenkirk and preparing for a much anticipated wine-pairing dinner from Thyme Square chef Cory Shupe, which is being held at Martinis’ super special south side room.
Stay tuned for more details on this dinner.
Few things say “Good morning” like a hot cup of pumpkin spice coffee, black and The White Stripes quaking my tiny array of consumer speakers. So far, the new year is off to a good start — the good far outweighing the bad with no ugly in sight. A kiss, a limo ride, a completed screenplay, new filmmaking toys and a day trip to St. Louis to see a double bill of incredible movies.
I have a love-hate relationship with the theaters in the Quincy area. Don’t get me wrong, I’m grateful to have movie theaters close by, but once-in-a-while trips to St. Louis cinemas are absolutely necessary — like taking a day off at work for mental health reasons. This time, we went to see two films not yet playing in Quincy.
“Black Swan,” which is finally opening in Quincy Friday, Jan. 14, had a screen at the Chase Park Plaza’s theater — part of the STL Cinema chain: “A civilized alternative to the megaplex.” I’ve never been to the Chase Park Plaza, but I’m a huge fan of the Central West End and I’ve heard all kinds of pomp and circumstance about the hotel itself. I expected a lot from this theater. Walking in, I was under whelmed.
While the selection of movies were great, the theaters, themselves, look like they were built for Tiny Elvis. The screen looked no bigger than Pat Taylor’s home theater in the dungeons of Ice Scream. My feet stuck to the floor with each step and the seats seemed a bit dusty. It was like seeing a movie in the Quincy Mall theater circa 2005 when you had to go in practically wearing a Hazmat suit. The Chase also has a so-so selection of snacks and booze, but, hey, they got booze!
A lady sitting about halfway down the Tiny Elvis looked at myself and my brother-in-law walking past her and said, “Oh, tall people, please don’t sit in front of me.” My immediate reaction was not very nice, so I just smiled and kept walking. The theater got about half-full before the picture started. Then everything was wonderful. Not only was “Black Swan” an amazing film — I know, I know, everyone’s hyping it, but it‘s true, unless you‘re Pat Taylor, who said, “meh” — but everyone watching with us in the theater seemed to think so, too.
Would I go back to Chase for another film? Yeah, sure, as long as that film’s not playing at the Moolah Theatre down the road.
The MOOLAH THEATRE! Now THIS is what cinema should be! We went there next to catch “The King’s Speech” and left with an experience that’s making me tear up just thinking about it.
The Moolah is down the road from Chase on Lindell in a beautiful, historic building that was renovated into this cinema temple for 17.2 million bucks. It has a lounge with a big screen projector — bigger than the film screen at The Chase Park Plaza — a pub, pool tables, video games, a grill and a gargantuan screen with leather couches, chairs and traditional theater seating in the back and up on the balcony. There is no bad seat in this house.
We arrived 20 minutes early and found a long line of eager Moolites already gathering. We bought our tickets and found a place in line to claim a leather couch, while bro-in-law and I took this opportunity to get lunch and drinks for everyone.
At the bar, they had a list of customized cocktails based on the film. I was already buzzing with excitement over the theater; time to add to it with libation. We threw back a shot of tequila and ordered wine and a “Lionel Logue” — a coffee liqueur concoction based on Geoffrey Rush’s character in the film. We then picked up a pizza and followed the ladies into the theater. The couch we nabbed was at a bit of an awkward angle in relation to the screen, but it really didn’t detract from the movie.
“The King’s Speech” was so good, I wouldn’t be surprised if it upset front-runner “The Social Network” at the Oscars. But it’s hard not to fall in love with a great movie when you’re in a giant theater, enjoying good wine and cocktails, and sharing the experience with an awesome crowd. At a time when more and more people are disrespecting the movie-going experience by talking, constantly checking cell phones, texting or even answering calls, the people in the Moolah that screening were totally immersed in the picture.
If you’re planning a trip to St. Louis any time soon, I highly recommend catching a movie at the Moolah, but not this week. This week, they’re showing “The Green Hornet.” I suggest waiting for something better.
• Dia de los Muertos: Adios Halloween? Not quite. November 2nd is the Day of the Dead, so paint yourself all skeleton-like, open up a bottle of primo tequila (I recommend Milagro Reposado Reserve), and feast upon candied pumpkin and sugar skulls…candy corn and leftover Halloween treats works for me. Just be sure to have enough to share with the visiting dead. If you’re reading this beyond the Mexican Holiday, start celebrating immediately. Any day is actually a good day of the dead.
We’re actually planning on a Halloween sequel. Think of John Lithgow in “Santa Claus: the Movie” as BZ, the evil toymaker, gleefully shouting out “CHRISTMAS TWO!!” Yeah, now prepare for “HALLOWEEN TWO!“ Rome’s ancient feast, LEMURIA, on May 13th sounds like a great date for a Halloween sequel. Party away those pesky evil spirits!
• HAMPSHIRE: A GHOST STORY now listed on Netflix. Add it to your queue.
• Meat trays at Martinis at 515
• New eats — Sydne’s Café and Catering: Victoria: Sydne Holder has a new café. She previously owned Out To Lunch on Hampshire, and is now located on 12th Street in the former My Koog location. The menu offers items for breakfast and lunch. Sydne’s soups have always been delicious, as well as her sandwichs. Give it a try.
• The Madison Avenue cocktail
• Wishing for Wine event at the Ambiance: Victoria: We were informed that the event this year is on November 11th at the Ambiance in Quincy from 4 pm to 8 pm. Proceeds benefit the Make A Wish Foundation. We went to last year’s event, and we really enjoyed it. Lots of different wines to taste as well as beer, and items to munch on. Definitely attend this event. You can buy tickets at the door for $10 per person. Hiring a chauffer or a prom bus to cart you to and fro would be a helluva good idea.
• The Blood and Sand cocktail
• Blue Heron Orchard’s Apple Cider. Probably all spoken for, by now, but if you can get a jug of it from Dan Kelly or anyone else, do it. Hey, do it.
• Secret Underground Dinners in Quincy with secret guests serving secret food that I’m not supposed to talk about. Forget you read this.
• Thanksgiving turkey/dinner ORGANIC-STYLE: Victoria: We’re going organic this year with the meal. Free range turkey from US Wellness Meats, all the way down to organic stuffing. Yum! But the real fun, besides stuffing our faces, will be spending time with family….ah, sentimental, yes, but enjoyable.
• Black Friday: Victoria: Yes, we’re the crazy couple that will get up at 3:00 am to be entertained by the frantic masses in search for bargains. I love it! Nothing makes me smile more than the hustle and bustle — free entertainment. Sure, we may go out in search of a door buster, but we mainly go out for the fun rush of it all. Then, we come home, pop on some fantastic Christmas film like “Love Actually,“ and decorate for Christmas. This is one of my favorite days of the year.
Christopher Kelley and his wife Victoria
VICTORIA: You may remember Ray Wise as the Devil in the CW’s brief “Reaper” or as the bad guy who tried to kick RoboCop in the crotch. Here, he stars in this eerie, wonderful, campy film about a family driving through a long stretch of dark forest to get to their relative’s house on Christmas Eve. It includes a detour to a wooded road that seems never ending and a spooky woman in white hiding in the trees. Bickering ensues among the family leading to funny dialogue, amidst all of the strange occurrences. Murder. Ghosts. Creepiness and some gore, but too good to be considered cheesy-bad.
“The Lady in White”
VICTORIA: I remember watching this as a kid and being totally creeped out. The tale involves unsolved murders and ghosts. A song whistled by the killer in the movie has stuck with me since. An older flick that still holds up today, despite one terrible special effect of a man falling off a cliff that leads to giggles from the audience. Starring Lucas Haas and Mona from “Who’s the Boss?”
VICTORIA: Bruce Campbell, enough said. Wait, Bruce Campbell as Elvis in a nursing home fighting a mummy alongside an elderly black man who claims he‘s JFK, nice. “I think you know what I’m gettin’ at Mr. President. We’re gonna kill us a mummy. “ A Chris Kelley favorite. Sadly, Bruce Campbell backed out of the sequel over creative differences. Really, Bruce? You didn’t seem to have any hang-ups making “Alien Apocalypse” but you’re drawing the line here at Ho-Tep 2? Really?
VICTORIA: Faux documentary about a haunting, much more engaging than those awful “Paranormal Activity“ movies. Very creepy. Dialogue driven, so not one of those mindless horror flicks. You’ll want to pay attention to this one. Scares in just the right places.
VICTORIA: Classic movie from 1932. Don’t be intimidated by age or black and white film. This one will keep your attention. One of us. One of us. One of us. One of us…
CHRIS: I DVR’d this a few years ago to watch with friends on Halloween night. They rejected it and made me turn it off. Making weird siren-like noises while sobbing, I wrote a frustrated letter to Roger Ebert who had my back, printed my letter and wrote, “no one who rejects black and white should be allowed to watch movies.” Word.
Christopher Kelley and his wife Victoria