All posts by ERTorre

E. R. Torre is a writer/artist whose first major work, the mystery graphic novel The Dark Fringe, was optioned for motion picture production by Platinum Studios (Men In Black, Cowboys vs. Aliens). At DC Comics, his work appeared in role-playing game books and the 9-11 Tribute book. This later piece was eventually displayed, along with others from the 9-11 tribute books, at The Library of Congress. More recently he released Shadows at Dawn (a collection of short stories), Haze (a murder mystery novel with supernatural elements), and Cold Hemispheres (a mystery novel set in the world of The Dark Fringe). He is currently hard at work on his latest science fiction/suspense series, Corrosive Knights, which features the novels Mechanic, The Last Flight of the Argus, and Chameleon.

Metropolis (1927) a (ridiculously belated) review

I’ve mentioned it before so forgive me if I’m being repetitious: There are three films I consider my all time favorites.

One is Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey. A second is the Jean Cocteau, Jean Marais starring Orpheus (1950).

The third, and one I often feel inches the other two out as the best of the three (on another day, you might find me thinking differently, though!) is the majestic 1927 Fritz Lang and Thea von Harbou Metropolis.

Based on the novel of the same name that Thea von Harbou wrote (Lang and von Harbou, at the time were married), Metropolis is a staggering work of science fiction, a film whose influence is still felt, I feel, in modern cinema…

…and it had been a while since I sat down and watched it start to end and figured it was time to do so.

So last week, during Thanksgiving, I was on a flight to visit my daughter and downloaded the film to my VUDU app. Interestingly, sitting next to me was a guy who was watching Andor on his cell phone (I couldn’t tell you which episode of the series it was as I haven’t seen them myself). I did catch a few scenes and I was struck by how the characters were dressed in this dreary gray, like worker bees. And not unlike, I would point out, the drearily dressed working class in Metropolis, where these images come from.

For many, many years and since the release of Metropolis, the only way to see it was in a truncated form. Some 25 or so minutes of the film were cut from it after its disastrous premiere.

Why?

Because the studios invested a ton of money in the film and the early word was the film was going to be a financial disaster for them. So the studios took the film and cut it down by those 25 or so minutes in the hopes that a shorter film could play more often in theaters and thus the studio wouldn’t lose their proverbial shirts.

Thing is, back in 1927 and when this was done, there was no sense that future generations would want to -or even care to- see any films made then. The thought was they were made, released, and that was that.

So those cut scenes were lost and, for decades, it was feared audiences would never get to see Metropolis as Lang and von Harbou originally intended.

I first became aware of this sad reality when I first saw the film way, way back in 1984. Musician Giorgio Moroder, a fan of the film, decided to try to reconstruct it as best he could and added a then “new” soundtrack to the film featuring, among others, Pat Benetar, Billy Squire, and Freddie Mercury. This version of the film is available to be seen on Youtube.com for free…

I was, quite frankly, blown away by the experience. This version of the movie impacted me in such a profound way that it led to, among other things, the inspiration to my first published work, The Dark Fringe, which envisioned a Metropolis-like megacity meshed with a film noir crime…

But what also took my imagination, and saddened me considerably, was one of the first captions presented in this version of the film:

“Fritz Lang made this film in 1926. Against his wishes the film was subsequently shortened for its American release which left the story disjointed, difficult to comprehend, and caused the loss of many scenes, most of which have disappeared forever.”

That last bit, in particular, was simply heartbreaking.

But because of Moroder’s release, and because of these words, others started to look for a “complete” copy of Metropolis. And as it would turn out, in 2008 and by a near miracle, a 16mm print of the complete Metropolis was found in the Museo del Cine in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Truly it was a miracle this single copy survived: Apparently representatives of an Argentinian movie distribution company were present at the premiere of Metropolis in Germany and secured a copy of the film right after said premiere and just before the studio started cutting the film down.

They flew with their complete copy to Argentina and it remained in a vault there, undiscovered, until 2008. This print was cleaned up as best as possible and the “cut” scenes added to the more pristine sequences and, in 2010, The Complete Metropolis was released…

…and here’s the trailer for The Complete Metropolis

When I first saw it, I was again blown away by what I was seeing. The added sequences -which are notable because their quality isn’t as good as the rest- enhanced the story tremendously, creating more suspense and action and filling in gaps which I could only imagine.

Now, the title of the film is something of a misnomer. Because as brilliant as it is, it isn’t the complete film. There remain two sequences that, alas, were too corroded to be able to be salvaged. One involved a preacher’s sermon and the other involved Joh Frederson, the “master” of Metropolis fighting against Rotwang, the movie’s villain.

But, other than those two sequences, we now have a very complete film.

And watching it again, while flying back home last week, was a magical experience. For a work that is now approaching 100 years, Metropolis remains an incredibly ambitious work.

It is pulpy, action filled, and, yes, at times cheesy. It presents an incredibly ambitious plot which touches upon religion and myth, society and the function of its citizens. Perhaps naively ultimately offers a solution to society’s ills, yet the conclusion is so touching I can’t help but feel tears well up when I watch it.

If you haven’t seen Metropolis yet, you really should.

I will repeat, it is a very old silent movie and you have to check some of your expectations and understandings of more modern cinema at the door.

But if you’re like me and you give it a chance, you’ll come to realize there’s a reason this film is considered the great-granddaddy of science fiction works.

It’s not just a great film.

It’s easily one of the very greatest films ever made.

POST-SCRIPT: It occurred to me while watching the film that the “cut” scenes which were added and which have a lesser quality might be great targets for enhancement. Given what Peter Jackson has done with the Get Back documentary and his They Shall Not Grow Old film, perhaps it would be nice if he -or people who have access to some of the software he’s used to enhance the older images presented on both these works, could work their magic on Metropolis.

One can dream, can’t they?

Christine McVie (1943-2022)

A few years back, perhaps around 2015 or 2016, I caught Fleetwood Mac in concert. Though the crowd was generally older (like me) there were a nice amount of fairly young people there.

The group had its classic lineup of Mick Fleetwood, Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham, John McVie, and, of course, Christine McVie.

Yesterday came the shocking news that Ms. McVie had passed away at the age of 79.

As shocking as it was to hear this, it is sadly something we’re going to be having more and more of in the coming years: The passing of some incredibly great musical talent whose career heights were in the 1960’s through the 1980’s.

A while back (you can read it here) I wrote about a sobering article Damon Linker about the “coming death of every rock legend”.

Doing simple math, you realize that many of those wonderful artists of yesteryear that people in my generation and beyond admire are growing increasingly older.

I recall when we went to see Fleetwood Mac I read an article about them and was shocked, at the time, to read that Christine McVie was (at the time) in her mid-70’s. I realized all the members of the band were getting up there in age and that’s why when the Damon Linker article came out I felt a fresh wave of sober sadness at the prospect of what’s to come.

My all time favorite musical artist is David Bowie and he passed away at the relatively young age of 69 in 2016, now a seemingly too long six years ago.

And yesterday I felt that same wave of sadness regarding Ms. McVie.

While the group had its internal friction, Fleetwood Mac’s classic 1970’s group, featuring Ms. McVie, Nicks, Buckingham, Fleetwood, and her ex-husband John were freaking incredible.

Their first album, 1975’s Fleetwood Mac, featured the debut of this version of the band (they were around since the 1960’s in other forms) was an incredible work…

But it was their next album, 1977’s Rumours, which sent them into the stratosphere…

While their follow up albums didn’t quite live up to this one in terms of sales, they continued, despite those already mentioned inter-band frictions, to release pretty decent works… even if band members would leave and then come back.

In the wake of Ms. McVie’s passing, I’ve seen people posting how they feel she was better than Stevie Nicks or that they always preferred her music over that of the others and… come on.

What made Fleetwood Mac so damn great is that you had such a wonderful and incredibly strong variety of songs coming from Buckingham, from Nicks, and, yes, from McVie. And that’s not to forget about what was brought to the table by Mick Fleetwood and John McVie as well! In fact, I recall an interview with Lindsey Buckingham where he said this version of Fleetwood Mac was not unlike The Beatles in terms of talent.

He might well have been right.

Truly the band had a surplus of talent and while I’m sad to read about Ms. McVie’s passing, at least we have her legacy of work out there to enjoy.

Here then is one of my favorites Fleetwood Mac songs featuring Ms. McVie and Lindsey Buckingham, and which is perhaps not as well known as some of the others. From 1982, “Hold Me”…

Rest in peace.

Post-Election Analysis, Part 33 & 1/3

After this, I promise I’ll lay back and find other stuff to talk about. Regardless…

BEWARE – THERE BE POLITICS DISCUSSED HERE…!

Still there?

You have been warned…!

So as of today, Wednesday the 16th of November, a full eight days since the midterms elections on the 8th, the following is true:

a) Many thought there would be a big “red” wave which did not materialize at all.

b) Not only did it not materialize, the Democratic Party will retain control over the Senate. To be determined is whether they will have 50 or 51 votes. This is because the Ralph Warnock/Herschel Walker race in Georgia goes to a tie-breaker as neither received 50% of the vote. Warnock did get more votes but, given this is essentially a “new” election, I suppose anything is possible.

c) the right wing media has had a really hard time explaining what happened and some of the explanations are…

…well, I guess the word “yikes” comes to mind.

Sorry for the quality of the video, it’s the best example I could find without getting too deep into the madness of YouTube.

Let me be clear here: I find most -perhaps even all- of what Jesse Watters says here loathsome. If we are to take his words here at face value (and with many of the Fox talking heads one sometimes wonders what is real and what is said to simply be provocative) he seems to view women -single women in particular- as being some kind of lesser/dumb creatures who are “brainwashed” into voting Democratic. Further, he states that they need to get married so as to “wake up”. At this point they will vote for the clearly better Republican choice.

Yeah, sure.

As I didn’t want to totally lose my mind, I’ve seen/read some choice items here and there from the right wing side and they really seem at a loss as to why they underperformed so badly here. Mr. Watters’ comments are idiotic, for sure, but I haven’t heard all that many right wing analysis for the underperformance which is more insightful, especially in interviews of politicians of the Republican party.

One thing that no one on that side seems to want to talk about, for example, is the effect of the insurrection of January 6th. In the right wing echo chamber that event is either too distant or completely irrelevant. Given what happened very recently to Paul Pelosi, husband of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, and the abhorrent reactions from some in the right wing to it, I suspect this violent act only reminded people not in the thrall of Fox News and its like of just how nasty those on that side can be.

Then there’s the Dobbs Decision which essentially nullified Roe v. Wade and struck down the right to abortion. This ruling not only inflamed many (including unmarried women) because not only was it a bad decision, IMHO, but it also remined people of the chicanery and lies which lead to the Supreme Court having a majority in place to overturn it.

To wit: Mitch McConnell not allowing Barrack Obama to get his nominee for the Supreme Court to get a hearing and be put in. McConnell’s reasoning was laughable then, and proved incredibly hypocritical when he subsequently hurried the nominees of Trump into position on the court. Following the Dobbs decision, people scrutinized the hearings several of these now Supreme Court justices gave back when they were originally nominated and it was clear they were at best very slippery in their responses about Roe v. Wade… if not outright lying.

Not a good look for people who now sit on the upper echelon of our court system.

And who can forget Donald Trump himself? His at times outrageous actions and hateful -even bigoted- rhetoric during his presidency turned off a lot of people. He simply couldn’t show himself to be nice. He had to always go nuclear on it seemed every issue.

Trump’s handling of COVID, further, led to the deaths of many, many of his supporters. By scoffing at the dangers of the pandemic, he emboldened his fans to ignore vaccines and preventative care. Today, one can find articles pointing out that more Republicans died from COVID following the appearance of the vaccines than Democrats. Whether those deaths may have affected the vote count is questionable and may not have mattered.

What one wonders, however, is how many people who scoffed at COVID subsequently had a big scare with it and realized -maybe too late for relatives or loved ones- that what Trump and the right wing media said about it was wrong. And if what they said was wrong about the pandemic, then maybe, just maybe, this might have opened their eyes enough to look away from the right wing media environment.

The point I’m making is that there probably wasn’t any one single thing that caused the red wave to not materialize. And it certainly wasn’t single women.

Yesterday, November the 15th Donald Trump announced he will run for President again for 2024 and the announcement was met with, it appears, yawns…

There is at the very least a realization in the Republican party that Donald Trump is toxic to their election chances. It’s taken them a while to realize this fact but here’s the thing: Like or loathe him, Donald Trump commands a lot of voters’ attention on that side of the political spectrum. Certainly he does for voters who until now have flocked to Republicans.

So there appears to be attempts like what you see in that New York Post front page to put him down, to not give him attention.

This is a very calculated effort but here’s the problem: It might not work.

What if Trump re-engages with the 30 or so percent of people who will vote for him no matter what? What if when the Republican debates come around he manages to blow Ron DeSantis -or whichever other candidate is out there trying to get the Republican nomination- out of the water like he did with Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush?

Conversely, what if what the Republican power structure and right wing media is doing works and he doesn’t get the Republican nomination? Does Donald Trump give up and quietly go away?

Man, I do not see that happening.

In Donald Trump I see a guy who doubles and triples down on his actions when they fail.

So what happens if Donald Trump doesn’t get the Republican nomination? Is it entirely out of the realm of possibility he decides to run as a 3rd party candidate?

Either way, I suspect today the more rational minds within the Republican party must be realizing his brand of politicking is a net drag on them.

As I’m not a fan of the Republican party as it stands today -way too extreme for my taste- I’m nonetheless curious to see how this all plays out in the next couple of years.

It’s morbidly entertaining, if nothing else.

Just a couple of more thoughts…

…about the November 8th election.

Obviously…

BEWARE… POLITICS!

It’s Friday the 11th and as of today, we still don’t have a total tally or knowledge of who “won” either the House or Senate.

We can make some guesses and it appears the Republicans will take over the House but with a very slim margin and it appears, at least so far, that Democrats will indeed keep the Senate, though their number may be the same, ie 50 seats, or one extra to 51 (plus the Vice President who can vote in the Senate would make them have 52 votes).

What I find most intriguing today, apart from still being quite pleasantly surprised by most everything that happened (save to my state of Florida) is that it appears there’s been an awakening with the youth vote.

I believe, like many others, issues regarding the Dobbs decision, which invalidated Roe v. Wade, is going to keep haunting the Republican party for a very long time. Already there was a report that the party leaders in Florida are looking to further limit abortions and… I just don’t see that helping their -or Ron DeSantis’- cause.

For so many years the issue of abortion was played well by the Republican party as an instrument to draw in people but now that the Supreme Court has taken away Roe, the sleeping tiger (as the old cliche goes) has awoken and it feels like this may be the start of something quite bad for the Republican party.

Of course, we’ll see.

Either way, the decision may well have led to this non-Red wave, which so many pundits were predicting…

Here’s the thing that must be stressing Republicans out even more: They still have Trump hollering from the sidelines and many of them are only now, after this election, starting to talk openly on (finally) leaving him…

Worse, Trump has begun to bad mouth Ron DeSantis, the governor of Florida and who many of the right wing pundits feel is the best choice to run for President in 2024…

Trump, I do believe, wants desperately to be President again and realizes this may well be the one -and only- way to avoid all the many, many legal problems he is currently facing.

Which will, I believe, make things incredibly hard for DeSantis and those who hope the Republicans will somehow help their cause by the next election cycle.

I wonder.

Ron DeSantis may have surprised many by his win in Florida, but I have grave doubts he will be able to project himself well to the rest of the country. Much as I don’t like Trump, I can’t deny he has a great deal of charisma. He talks big and very confidently and for some, that was enough. Even when whatever he said made no sense.

DeSantis doesn’t have that charisma. If anything, he is a black hole of emotion, a guy who looks awkward in public and when he talks you almost expect him to start screaming that those darn kids get off his lawn.

He may, in time, be able to smooth his public persona, but I wonder.

Either way, the big takeaway in the days following the election, apart from how poorly the Republicans did/how well the Democratic party did and how it appears the Dobbs decision will continue to reverberate throughout the country, is how now there are those in the Republican party who are willing to do the unthinkable and denounce Trump.

Too bad they didn’t show any of that kind of bravery when he was being impeached.

Post-election analysis…

Though it should be obvious from this post’s headline, nonetheless…

AHEAD LIES POLITICS! BEWARE!!!

Going into the midterm elections of November 8th, it was looking pretty grim from the Democratic party. Historically, the party in power tended to do badly in the midterms, often losing a large number of seats in the House of Representatives as well as the Senate.

Pundits predicted the so-so economic news of late coupled with inflation and a lower approval rating for President Biden and Republican enthusiasm to vote pointed to the possibility of a “red wave”, ie a massive turnout for Republican candidates.

It was not to be.

Even today, two days after the elections, we still don’t know for certain if the Republicans will take over the House of Representatives (they likely will, but by a very small margin). The Senate remains in play as well, with the very real possibility the Democratic party might pick up 1 overall extra seat from what they had before to where the Republicans may gain control over the Senate by an equally thin margin.

So while it is possible the Republicans gain control over the Senate and House, their margins will be razor thin at best.

There is plenty of teeth gnashing on the Republican side as to why this happened and it appears there is a consensus, even within the right-wing ether, that the Republican party really blew it here. In fact, the only “bright” spot for them was what happened in Florida with the re-election of the Governor, a man who it seems Fox news is keen on anointing the next big thing (I have my doubts he’ll play all that well outside of this state, frankly) and the re-election of Marco Rubio to the Senate.

But that was it.

Let’s see what happens next…

Oh, Elon…

If you’ve been ’round these parts a while you know I’m really fond of electic cars.

I’ve long felt ICE cars (internal combustion engines) were a technology of the past, dirty, noisy (though I do love me the sound of 1960’s/70’s era muscle cars!), and featuring mechanisms that needed to change for the sake of the environment, if nothing else.

When Tesla became a thing, I read up on their cars. Their first big production vehicle was the Tesla Roadster…

Their first full on production model, however, was the Model S…

I felt the vehicle looked intriguing but the price was simply prohibitive to me. A little later they came out with the Model X, their luxury SUV, and the price was even more prohibitive…

I was so intrigued with what Tesla was doing and, yes, I became quite intrigued with the man behind the company, Elon Musk.

I suspect few people out there haven’t heard of Mr. Musk. He made himself a fortune being a part of PayPal in its infancy and bought up Tesla and pushed it along -at times facing financial collapse- until releasing the highly successful Model 3…

It can be argued, and I suppose it will in time, that the Model 3, first released in July of 2017, was the first electric car to break open the auto industry to EVs. Yes, there were hiccups. The early Model 3s had all kinds of minor issues, but the price was at least reasonable enough to allow people like myself to finally buy into these cars (mine is a 2019 model) and it certainly provided Tesla, and Elon Musk, their first really big success.

The Model 3 was followed by the Model Y, a smaller SUV, which seems to be even more successful than the 3 and in even higher demand from consumers…

In the meantime, Elon Musk has another company, Space X, which did the near unthinkable: Managed to create a rocket that could land vertically back on a pad! Mr. Musk has long stated a goal of his is to get to, and colonize, Mars.

In almost all his endeavors he seemed to have success and his forays into the media have been equally amusing and annoying, with many either loving or hating him… and perhaps in equally strong measures.

I still love my Tesla Model 3. I still feel it is a terrific vehicle even as I see the coming wave of EVs from other companies. If it wasn’t for Elon and Tesla and the Model 3 and Y, we wouldn’t be on the cusp of this EV revolution, and I think that’s a wonderful thing.

Having said that and for those who’ve been living in a cave these past few weeks/months…

What the hell is wrong with the guy of late?

Like Donald Trump, Elon Musk has used Twitter well, building up a fanbase and at times posting witty comments and cringey comments in equal measure and solidifying his fans and detractors.

It seems like a lifetime ago that he decided, via Twitter, to offer a fee to purchase the company. There was much back and forth afterwards, with many feeling Musk had overvalued the company and then he seemed to want to back out.

Lawsuits were filed but ultimately Musk bought the company for the price he originally offered, a whopping 44 billion dollars… and it seems like each day since things have gone further down the toilet for him.

Now, I don’t want to get into all the details as I’m sure most people know but some of the lowlights include Mr. Musk claiming he wanted to help “free speech” with Twitter but has banned many users… mostly because they were making fun of him. He also fired a whole bunch of Twitter staff and now looks like he’s realized he needed them and wants them back.

To say this whole affair is a shitshow is to undersell it.

The bottom line is that many are leaving the service and Musk wants to charge some $8 a month (admittedly not a terribly large amount) to have people given a “blue-check verification”… which frankly I have no idea how that works at all.

Yeah, while I’ve read the odd Twitter posts, some of which were quite witty and humorous, I’ve never been a part of the service.

Reports have stated Mr. Musk is basically flying by the seat of his pants here, doing this and that with Twitter and, I suppose, learning the very hard way that sometimes his instincts and proposed changes don’t exactly paint him in the best light.

This again returns to something I’ve stated before: Things can change and quickly.

I recall years ago the head of Netscape (remember that?) an early and quite popular at the time internet browser company having its CEO interviewed for some program or another and he was asked about the then new Microsoft Internet Explorer and the CEO scoffing at the interviewer and said something to the effect that the ship had sailed and Microsoft had missed the proverbial boat on the whole internet explorer thing.

Today, Microsoft has their Edge (Internet Explorer lasted many years before being retired) and Netscape is long, long gone.

Mr. Musk has paid a literal king’s ransom for Twitter but nowhere is it written in stone the company and service will continue to operate.

Given the way Mr. Musk has managed it so far, one wonders if Twitter might join Netscape in the near future.

What will become of the movie industry…?

Stumbled upon this rather grim article written by Tony Maglio and presented on indiewire.com…

Warner Bros Discover lost 2.4 Billion and Lionsgate lost 1.8 Billion and its not even dinnertime

The article rightfully wonders how film studios can survive with such staggering losses and, frankly, I wonder the same.

Looking at this from a longer view, it seems to me this is part and parcel of, of all things, the arrival of home computers and the internet.

Let me explain.

When home computers first appeared they were crude yet began changing the landscape. I’m old enough to have been part of the very first generation to have one way, waaaaaaaayyyy back in the early 1980’s. My first computer was the venerable Atari 800…

Compared to what we now have, the Atari 800 was a laughably crude and for the most part primitive machine. And yet I almost instantly found a use for it. See, I was in high school at the time and the word processing program it had allowed me to write reports and get them printed out (on an equally crude and extremely slow printer) which was an incredible blessing!

No longer did I have to use a typewriter and white out errors or have to start all over again when I made too many errors. With Atari’s Word Processor, I could type and correct the whole thing and print it out only when it was ready!

A truly marvelous innovation!

Of course, the Atari computers didn’t last and soon IBM and Apple computers appeared. Apple was viewed as more “graphic” intensive but the IBM computers seemed to have the leg up. They were constantly improving and, like the mania to buy new iPhones or new gaming computers, one expected each new generation of IBM or Windows based computers to be better and better.

And they were!

And then came the internet, which is essentially phase two.

Now, you could interact with people all over the world. You could communicate via email. You could send files…

When MP3s became a thing, you no longer needed to store your music on CDs or have those vinyl records (by then, cassettes were a thing of the past and, yes, I know vinyl records are making a comeback).

You could keep your music on your computer and soon enough, even buy albums digitally without having to leave the comfort of your home. Suddenly, all those music stores I frequented -some of which were incredibly large!- were gone…

Then came the Kindle and the iPad and, as with music, now you didn’t need to actually buy physical copies of books. You could buy digital copies and buy and read them in the comfort of your home and, just like that, bookstores also became something of a thing of the past.

Certainly in my area there are only a fraction of them around like there used to be!

Alas, next in line were movies.

With the ability to create music and book files, it wasn’t long before digital copies of movies became a thing as well. Further, Netflix appeared and showed the industry that streaming was also a viable option to watching movies and TV shows.

However, people still went to theaters to see the latest releases, so things seemed to be going ok…

Until COVID hit.

Suddenly people were homebound and the studios had to hold back on releasing their upcoming films. In some cases, these films eventually were released but appeared on streaming services very quickly afterwards. It’s fair to say that films such as Wonder Woman 84, No Time to Die, and Tenet, regardless of their quality (and I know some feel they’re not great films at all), would have performed far better had COVID not kept them from being released as they should have been… and those are the three “biggest” films I can think of offhand which were victims of COVID.

Here’s the thing I’ve come to notice after spending all these years watching the ebb and flow of entertainment: Something that is big at one point might suddenly become old hat really quickly.

There was a time disco music ruled. Then, suddenly, no one wanted to hear disco music. There was a time grunge ruled. Then, it was gone.

Movie theaters for so many years have been THE place to go see new films. But with COVID, we stopped going to them en mass. Yes, there are exceptions (Top Gun Maverick and the latest Spider-Man film being two of them) but in general the entire industry is in a funk.

And now that COVID is somewhat a thing of the past (get vaccinated, people!) we’re seeing that audiences aren’t necessarily flocking back to see the latest movies. At least not quite yet.

For we have seen movies appear on various streaming services and some of us figure we’ll just wait a month or two and see whatever film is currently in theaters then.

It’s happened to me, quite frankly, with Black Adam. I’m certainly curious to see it (Dr. Fate is a favorite comic book character of mine and the fact that they got Pierce Brosnan to play the role delights me!) but frankly… I can wait.

How many other people are saying the same thing?

I’ve mentioned it before to friends of mine, but we still don’t know the extent to which the internet and home computers will affect our lives. We’re seeing it, day by day, from the early days when I realized I could use a Word Processor to write my High School reports, to realizing you can have your entire music collection on a small memory card to realizing you can have your entire library (books, comic books, magazines, etc.) on a memory card as well, to where we now realize we can stream or own movies on that same memory card.

Where will it all ultimately end?

I guess we’ll all find out together.

The Naked Gun & Naked Gun 2 1/2 cut scenes…

In the mood for some levity?

Posted to YouTube was this, clips from the TV presentation of the hilarious The Naked Gun. Some of these clips were used in lieu of the more suggestive ones in the theatrical cut (spoilers… the “nice beaver” line is …uh… replaced)…

For me, the clip that I most enjoyed finally seeing comes toward the end, when Drebin (Leslie Nielsen) faces off against Ludwig (Ricardo Montalban) at the Baseball stadium.

When I originally saw the film way, waaaaaaaaaaayyyy back when it was originally released I noticed the Umpire padding Drebin had on went from inflated to “deflated” without any explanation… at least in the theatrical cut of the film.

These clips show you what happened!

Since we’re on the subject, how about exptended/cut/TV alternates from the movie’s sequel, The Naked Gun 2 1/2?

Enjoy!

Election 2022

We’re a few days away from election day, Tuesday November the 8th and I hope everyone out there takes some time to vote.

If you’ve been ’round these parts you know, more or less, my politics.

Regardless of them, I hope everyone out there takes the time to look into the various candidates and issues presented on your local ballot and, even more importantly and as I said above, takes the time to vote.

I may not agree with all issues from all/any candidates, but not voting is simply not an option. At least for me.