Monday, February 1, 2016

The link who fell to Earth

Unfortunately, I don't have any interesting stories related to the music of David Bowie. I never saw him in concert, nor did he inspire me to explore my sexuality or anything along those lines. Like many people, I simply dug his music, and I'm really sad to see him departed from this life. As an actor - and he had been one almost as long as he had been a singer - he had an eclectic range of roles, as you would expect from one who took on roles in his musical performances: Pontius Pilate in The Last Temptation of Christ, Andy Warhol in Basquiat, Nikola Tesla in The Prestige, and this is in addition to his more famous roles in The Hunger, The Man Who Fell to Earth, and of course, Labyrinth. The man was a true original.

I can say a few more words, however, about the Ziegfeld Theater, which finally closed its doors for good last month. I didn't go there that often, but it seemed every time I did was like an event. The Ziegfeld I knew was not, of course, The Ziegfeld; not the original. I like to think, however, it lived up to its namesake. It was a splendid place to watch movies, especially the large ones. I had the privilege of seeing two 70mm films there: The Master and Interstellar. I also remember standing on line around the block with John & Sue to see both Attack of the Clones (sitting in the back, mocking Anakin and Padme) and Return of the King (wondering how many times it would end).

The heyday of the old midtown movie houses had passed by the time I came up. I was too young for the grindhouse-era 70s and I'm certainly too young to have experienced the glamour days of the 30s and 40s. The closing of the Ziegfeld means the severing of the last tie to that era, where a night at the movies in midtown Manhattan was a spectacle, a gala event. The Ziegfeld was a reminder of what that period was like, and there are precious few of them remaining - at least, that still show movies.

Moving on to lighter news: I have Photoshop again, as you can tell from the new banner. A dude in my writing group discovered - quite easily, too - something I should've figured out for myself: the program just needed to be reinstalled! Duh!

Oscars are this month, though I don't expect to do well predictions-wise. I have to remind myself that what I want to win and what I think will win are two different things. Still undecided on whether or not to see The Revenant. At this point I could go either way.

Your links for this month:

If you only click on one of these links (though naturally I hope you check out all of them), make sure you read what Jacqueline calls her "manifesto" on Donald Trump, classic movies, and education

Ryan eulogizes Bowie way better than I could.

Ruth remembers another British thespian who passed last month, Alan Rickman, with her favorite films by him.

Two reviews of two absolutely bizarre-sounding movies: Kristina from Speakeasy writes about The Madmen of Mandoras and Angela from The Hollywood Revue talks about The Phynx.

Courtney thinks The Hateful Eight has a race problem.

Pam bids adieu to a favorite movie theater from her childhood.

Aurora talks about the cinematic duo of director Billy Wilder and star Jack Lemmon.

Retrospace's excellent podcast, The Horshack Redemption, does an all-sci-fi episode which includes discussion of The Force Awakens.


  1. Thanks so much for including me in the bunch, Rich!

  2. Thanks so much for the link Rich. Still saddened by the passing of two icons, Bowie and Rickman. The latter especially as I LOVE so much of his work.

  3. As fine a dramatic actor as Rickman was, he had a good sense of humor, too. I wish he had done more comedy.

  4. Perhaps a nice needlepoint with "Should it be reinstalled?" would help us all get through life a little easier.

    Lots of excellent reading. Thanks for the links.

  5. I still feel stupid for not figuring that out on my own!

  6. Thanks for including me. Good things to read, thanks for rounding them up :)

  7. I think I may have to watch that movie you wrote about just to see how crazy a movie can get.

  8. Thanks for the link love, Rich. I actually re-watched The Prestige yesterday, I had forgotten just how wonderful Bowie performance is as Tesla. I may need to revisit Basquiat again as well, it has been years since I last saw that film.

  9. Same here. I probably remember the Basquiat documentary better than I do the dramatic version.


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