Tag: Movies

Do You Have Lamarr in Your Car?


It has been suggested that the short-range wireless protocol known as Bluetooth should instead have been called Lamarr, in honor of the actress/inventor Hedy Lamar.

Hedy (maiden name Kiesler) was born in Vienna in 1914. From her early childhood, she was fascinated by acting–and she was also very interested in how things worked, an interest which was encouraged by her bank-director father. She began acting professionally in the late 1920s, and gained fame and notoriety when she appeared–briefly nude–in the film Ecstasy.  It was followed by the more respectable Sissy, in which she played the Empress Elisabeth of Austria.

In 1933, Hedy married the arms manufacturer Friedrich Mandl, finding him charming and fascinating and also probably influenced by his vast wealth. She was soon turned off by his Fascist connections and his extremely controlling nature–rather ridiculously, he even tried to buy up all copies and negatives of Ecstasy.  He did not allow her to pursue her acting career but did require her to participate, mainly as eye-candy, in high-level meetings with German and Italian political leaders and with people involved in military technology. What she heard at these sessions both interested and alarmed her.

Stick the Landing


I recently watched one of this year’s Oscar-nominated films, Minari, and was pleasantly surprised. Minari tells the story of a young Korean family circa 1980 struggling to turn a few acres of Arkansas country into a Korean vegetable farm.

It was quite good, until it wasn’t.

Great Character Actors: Jack Carson


A couple of years ago, I wrote a post here about one of my favorite character actors, Ward Bond. I think it’s time to write a little about another of the great character actors that being Jack Carson. Like Bond, I don’t know much more about Carson’s life than that presented in his Wikipedia biography.

Carson was born in the province of Manitoba in Canada in 1910. His father was a successful insurance executive and the family moved to Milwaukee, Wisconsin when he was three or four years old. As such, he always considered Milwaukee his hometown and he was eventually naturalized as a U.S. citizen as an adult. His older brother, Robert, also pursued an acting career although with much less success.

April Showers Bring . . . Godzilla?


Godzilla 1954What could possibly go wrong here? Japanese scientists, with the approval of government officials, will dispose of radioactive waste water from the decommissioned nuclear power plants at Fukuyama by dumping it in the Pacific Ocean. This is not from the Babylon Bee, nor is it a belated April Fool’s story. It is a tale of our time, playing on our distrust of asserted expertise and asserted public interest. The power of the story also depends on a belief in zero risk options, indeed of magical cake that all may enjoy while continuing to have. Oh, and the story has deep international cultural significance.

I ran across the story through InfoWars, hosting a ZeroHedge column. So, trust but verify. Strait Times? Check. Business Insider? Check. The Sun? Check.

The cooling water that has been accumulating at the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Japan will be released into the Pacific Ocean after it has been treated to remove all harmful radioactive substances, Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga’s Cabinet decided yesterday.

Holy Thou Art


What does it mean for something to be holy? I think it means that a thing or person directs us to God or expresses His presence. Holiness is connected with pious awe. 

What artistic works seem holy to you? Which are the most peculiarly holy — holy in some unusual and perhaps less obvious sense? Is there some work of sculpture or architecture, painting or music, oration or literature that draws you closer to God in a way your associates don’t fully share? 

The Best of YouTube


I know — I should ditch YouTube because it’s anathema to those fighting to preserve what’s left of free speech. I ditched Facebook for this very reason and experienced an inner peace I’d been lacking since Skynet became self-aware. But I still use YouTube all the time for two main reasons:

  1. Unlike Facebook, a good alternative fails to exist. Rumble just doesn’t cut it yet.
  2. Most of the good guys’ channels are still up and dishing it, despite YouTube’s best efforts to silence them.

I have plenty of channels I subscribe to, almost all of which have nothing to do with politics. I subscribe to several ministries (Todd WhiteDutch SheetsFlashpointmy church), a bunch of movie and film channels, channels with nerd stuff, and a couple of NFL ones. They show up on my feed and I watch them in the quiet hour after the kids are finally in bed, or at three in the morning while trying to get the toddler back into his bed. If you’re looking for a soothing balm to mitigate the news of the latest atrocity against our country, or just want a break to kill the time in a waiting room somewhere, here are my latest favorites. (Note: unless noted, these are not always appropriate for kids.)


Member Post


There is not a clear line between them.  Novels are often considered more intellectually challenging than movies. But many readers prefer what I call “junk fiction” which, though respectable, offers thrills and little else. It’s mind candy to be enjoyed and quickly forgotten. Films can similarly offer shallow but pleasing content, of course.  Preview Open

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On this episode of “The Federalist Radio Hour,” writer and producer at Sinclair and Federalist Senior Contributor Ellie Bufkin joins Culture Editor Emily Jashinsky to celebrate the 30-year anniversary of the iconic thriller movie “Silence of the Lambs” and discuss how the film demonstrates the evolution of Hollywood.

On this episode of The Federalist Radio Hour, movie producer Dallas Sonnier joins Culture Editor Emily Jashinsky to talk about his recent project “Run Hide Fight” and how movie creators are branching out and expanding content beyond Hollywood.

‘A Gift to Humanity’


If we are to be unified, then we must be able and willing to share life. Bill Whittle and company offer a timely reminder of the tremendous good that social media can achieve when people are free to associate across boundaries and to enjoy life together as fellows.

A Sense of Wonder


Whether you are Christian or not, Christmas is a good time for renewal of innocence and wonder. The common sights of people excitedly opening gifts, decorating homes and public streets in lights, retelling stories of miracles and merriment — such experiences can rekindle in us a joyful pursuit of the good and the beautiful.

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I’m ashamed to admit that two nights ago I watched George Seaton’s A Miracle on 34th Street for the first time. I didn’t know what I had been missing out on all these years. If you haven’t seen it, go to your local video store or streaming service as soon as you can. The movie was about […]

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What if Frodo was not the lead protagonist of The Lord of the Rings? What might the story be like if told through only one character’s perspective?  The same fictional world. The same setting of time, over-arching threats, characters great and small, etc. How might the events change if you guided Frodo’s decisions? Then start […]

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If you could recommend one movie to watch on Thanksgiving, what would it be and why? No, I am not trying to impinge on @vinceguerra‘s movie question series, the person whose recommendation receives the most likes will be able to bask in whatever glory they derive from that. And I don’t care if you nominate […]

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Book a Private Movie Night


If you want the ultimate movie night, now is a golden opportunity. Until this pandemic abates or is dealt with, movie theaters across the country are trying about anything they can think of to stay afloat. Between customers too scared to come in, capacity restrictions, or out and out mandatory closures, while actually competing with movie studios going right to streaming while still charging premium screening costs to struggling theaters, many theaters may not even be around in another year. So they’re innovating.

Since you are not legally permitted to publicly show anything in your DVD collection, but you can show it privately, theaters are letting you privately book their giant screens and sound systems, and let you see your favorite films “on the big screen” the way they were intended in the first place. Tonight we took up a local theater on the opportunity.

I don’t know how many movie theaters will survive the pandemic. Many were doing poorly before COVID anyway, and now they’re practically begging for customers. In recent years even the large multiplex theaters have been offering customers the ability to book a screen, but the pricing has usually been affordable only for businesses, and the times available have likewise been in the daytime. This makes sense of course, as these are large buildings to heat or cool, and to staff for concessions and cleaning, so if one is going to open up for a private event, it needs to be remunerative. In this, the smaller independent theaters have a bit of an advantage – they only a few people on duty. Our local theater has decided to get in on the act.

’70s Blaxploitation Movies


Quote of the Day: “An independent filmmaker’s only hope of survival is to do something the mainstream studios can not or will not do”—Roger Corman, Hollywood’s king of B movies.

Let’s start by explaining what a pimpmobile was. If you take a look at the ‘70s films listed in this post, you’re going to see a lot of them, rolling jukeboxes cruising the ghetto streets of south Chicago, south-central Los Angeles, Philadelphia, and above all, New York City’s Harlem, for many years the unofficial capital of Black America. A pimpmobile was a big luxury car, usually a Cadillac Eldorado or Lincoln Continental, tricked out with garish accessories that boasted of money to burn. It was the ride par excellence of the urban criminal class, with no attempt to remain inconspicuous. On the contrary, it was as conspicuous as the Batmobile. It bragged to the world: I’m the king of the city. Nobody can stop me. Not white society, not the law, not my enemies in the streets. No one. That’s what the era of ‘70s Blaxploitation movies was all about—a young man’s fantasy of women, riches, limitless power, and revenge.

Handy translation guide for film reviews


Hate to burn two hours on a movie? Are you scarred from scenes you’d rather have missed? Here is a list of common movie review words and phrases–and what they tell you about what is actually in the film.

“Sweeping” Uneven and confusing timeline. May shift back and forth between eras.

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More than a couple tries were taken to get where I wanted to be with this group writing post. It began as an exploration of the filmography of Cab Calloway (yes, I have been watching too many Al Jolson movies), then became a review of/pitch for watching a Russian indie film, and finally manifested as […]

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