Archive for October 31st, 2006

My Precioussss…

This is just telling on so many levels…

Julie Mason of the Houston Chronicle writes in her pool report from Air Force One, on the way back from Texas back to Washington yesterday: “En route, Karl Rove appeared in the press cabin, brandishing a round tin filled with chocolate-covered pecans. Those who daintily took just one were admonished by the bearer to ‘take more, take more.’ He made a quick round of the cabin and paused on his way back out to declare, ‘Sweets for my sweets.'”

Just how many chocolate-covered nuts will it take to get the White House press corps (and the rest of the media, for that matter) to start doing their damn jobs and challenging the Republican spin instead of channeling it? I’ll be happy to take up a collection, even I have to get a whole tin for each reporter. Hell, I’ll even throw in some cocktail weenies if it helps remind them that they are not Karl Rove’s huckleberry.

6 comments October 31st, 2006 at 06:43pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Media,Politics,Wankers

Please Tell Me They Won’t Screw This Up…

This could be either very good or very bad…

Stanley Kubrick never threw anything away. On the other hand, he didn’t have much of a filing system, and when he moved — permanently, it turned out — from Hollywood to London in 1962, a great many things went astray. Among them was the sole copy of a film treatment called “Lunatic at Large,” which Mr. Kubrick had commissioned in the late ’50s from the noir pulp novelist Jim Thompson, with whom he had worked on “The Killing,” a 1956 heist story that became his first successful feature, and then on 1957’s “Paths of Glory.”

The manuscript remained lost until after Mr. Kubrick’s death, in 1999, when his son-in-law, Philip Hobbs, working with an archivist, turned it up, along with a couple of other scripts, and set about trying to make it into a movie.


“When Stanley died, he left behind lots of paperwork,” Mr. Hobbs said in a telephone interview. “We ended up going through trunks of it, and one day we came across ‘Lunatic at Large.’ I knew what it was right away, because I remember Stanley talking about ‘Lunatic.’ He was always saying he wished he knew where it was, because it was such a great idea.”

Speaking from her home in Britain, Mr. Kubrick’s widow, Christiane, said: “My husband always had a drawerful of ideas. There were always a lot of stories on the go, things he started, things he left lying around. It was like being in a waterfall. I remember he was very excited at the time about ‘Lunatic at Large,’ but then other things happened.”(…)

Despite its title, “Lunatic at Large” is not a horror story. It’s a dark and surprising mystery of sorts, in which the greatest puzzle is who, among several plausible candidates, is the true escapee from a nearby mental hospital. Mr. Clarke, the screenwriter, said that the recovered treatment (a prose narrative dramatizing an idea by Mr. Kubrick) was a “gem” but also “pretty basic,” and that he expanded it a bit, adding a new subplot, among other things, to make the solution less obvious. Mr. Clarke’s experience consists mostly of writing for British television, so he prepared for his new task by rereading Mr. Thompson and studying old Bogart films.

His finished screenplay has the feel of authentic Thompsonian pulpiness. Set in New York in 1956, it tells the story of Johnnie Sheppard, an ex-carnival worker with serious anger-management issues, and Joyce, a nervous, attractive barfly he picks up in a Hopperesque tavern scene. There’s a newsboy who flashes a portentous headline, a car chase over a railroad crossing with a train bearing down, and a romantic interlude in a spooky, deserted mountain lodge.

The great set piece is a nighttime carnival sequence in which Joyce, lost and afraid, wanders among the tents and encounters a sideshow’s worth of familiar carnie types: the Alligator Man, the Mule-Faced Woman, the Midget Monkey Girl, the Human Blockhead, with the inevitable noggin full of nails.


The director hired for “Lunatic at Large,” Mr. Palmer, is in roughly the position Ridley Scott was in before “The Duellists.” He’s an acclaimed London director of commercials, that is, who has never made a feature film.

But Mr. Hobbs is untroubled. “You have to remember that before he got his big chance, Stanley had only made one or two films,” he said. “And you can’t go to just anyone with a Kubrick idea; it does have a bit of provenance. A lot of people would be frightened to take it on.”

Mmm… Midget Monkey Girl…

I really do wish this had been made 40-50 years ago, when it was supposed to. And by Kubrick, in black & white. Or at least Sam Fuller.

1 comment October 31st, 2006 at 06:36pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Movies

Please Tell Me This Is A Joke…

They’ll need a telescope to see the shark…

“Guiding Light” and Marvel Comics have teamed up for an episode of this long-running series, to be shown at 10 a.m. tomorrow on CBS. In the episode, “She’s a Marvel,” Beth Ehlers, as Harley Davidson Cooper, one of the show’s main characters, has an accident that gives her superpowers. To commemorate the occasion, Marvel has produced an eight-page comic.


The episode is a mix of slapstick (a thief is shocked by the heroine, and his hair stands on end) and drama (are the powers worth possibly losing her husband?). Transitions between scenes feature comic book panels by Alex Chung.

Mr. Chung is also the artist of “A New Light,” the eight-page story from Marvel that is commemorating the collaboration. The story will be included in several Marvel titles, arriving last week, today and on Nov. 8.

The script for “A New Light” was a balancing act, said Jim McCann, the writer of the comic. He said he had to give readers enough information about “Guiding Light” characters and also fill them in on Marvel superheroes and villains.

“I tried to make it as universal and as accessible as possible for both sides,” Mr. McCann said. “I threw in a couple of little things for ‘Guiding Light’ fans, so they would know I really did my homework on their show.”

My brain hurts.

2 comments October 31st, 2006 at 06:32pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Comics

Great Moments In Sportswriting

I kinda like this one, actually…

“I’m no Isaac Newton,” guard Pete Kendall said yesterday, “but it seems to me that if he wasn’t pushed, he would’ve come down inbounds.”

Unfortunately for the Jets, the 17th-century English scientist wasn’t the field judge in Sunday’s 20-13 loss to the Browns.

I like the visual. Reminds me of those Burger King football commercials, but less weird.

2 comments October 31st, 2006 at 10:07am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Favorites,Quotes,Sports

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