Thane of Cawdor Trump! Out, Out, Damned Spot!

DATELINE: Tomorrow and Tomorrow

Julius Trump?

With local officials resigning from their jobs after posting their racist views on Twitter, we think President Trump is doing a helluva job influencing citizens.

In Brockton, Mass., a third-rate parks commissioner tweeted that the protesting black players of the NFL were monkeys.  He even told the newspapers and media that he was not a racist and that was not the intent of his comment. He regretted people took his words literally.

It just goes to show the people who make these comments have no idea they are racists. This is reminiscent of anyone who hates Obamacare because a black man’s name is on the health insurance. That means you, President Trump and arrogant members of Congress.

Thanks to the great example set by the Thane of Cawdor/Thane of Glamis, Our Trumpeting Lord of the Flies, Donald Trump is causing more racial divisions than Jefferson Davis.

When will the dimwits realize?  The protest is against police brutality toward black people. This is not a protest against America or against the flag.

Out, out, brief candle! The thane of Cawdor and Lord of the flies fails to see this. Like his role model Macbeth, Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player, that struts and frets his hour upon the stage, and then is heard no more.

If Melania wants to get rid of any dark spots, she should start with the big ugly spot on the carpet of the oval office in the White House.

Out out, damned spot!  It’s a problem caused by the Lord of the Flies. It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

Citizens should expect life to creep in this petty pace from day to day, to the last syllable of recorded time; And all our yesterdays have lighted fools the way to dusty death.

Out, out, brief candle! Out, out, damned Trump!

While the nation awaits on the Trump White House for tomorrow, tomorrow, and tomorrow, and a new election day.

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Trump Takes on Superstars of Sport

 DATELINE:  Trump Begins to Rival Dumb & Dumber

Dumb America    King Trump Wears the Crown Well

As one of the Deplorables who voted for President Trump to be our leader, we are frankly becoming more alarmed and embarrassed by our selection.  

Once again at one of the Nazi-style Putsch rallies, Mr. Trump called out and called for firing of any NFL athlete who takes a knee during the National Anthem.  He also slandered private sector workers by calling the knee-jerk protester:  “a son of a bitch.”
 

We are not fans of this particular choice of protest at professional sports events, and certainly not a fan of Mr. Colin Kaepernick, the main instigator. However, we do tend to believe that people have a right to vote and speak freely.
 

If you’re keeping track, this is yet again another case of Mr. Trump calling for a private citizen to be fired from his job for political speech. Not coincidentally, all of these people are black or people of color. That strikes us as disturbing. That does tend to put a dark hue on the President’s darker feelings. Whether you work for ESPN, or the NFL, you have a right to express yourself. 

Trump also denigrated basketball champion superstar Steph Curry by rescinding an invitation given to visit the White House. Curry is what you might call “high-yellow,” the lightest form of being a person of color. Trump did not rescind an invitation to Tom Brady who also did not attend the White House rally. 

Trump’s tirade has caused strange bedfellows to join hands: Roger Goodell has called the President divisive and ignoring all the good done by NFL players. And LeBron James, on the NBA, had more choice words for the leader of the world. 

We are beginning to become worried that the President of the United States wants to dismantle the US Constitution.  

And, as someone who claims he is against white supremacy is he certainly is the pin a boy for that philosophy. 

We suspect we’re not the only ones who were horrified when the president of the United States refers to American citizens as “sons of bitches.”  while advocating firing these concussed people of color who work outside the government. 

Pardon us for saying “yikes.” 

Classic Tale of Hockey Returns After a Long Hiatus

DATELINE:  Sordid Sports Fiction

kindlerinkrats

After twenty years and a long time out of print, the best novel on the sport of hockey has returned for readers, new and old. Rink Rats is a shocker still. It’s now an e-book and will be available in paperback soon.

Based on life during one college season during the 1990s, Mike Tortorella’s story continues to be controversial and revealing.  Mobie Monaco, the erstwhile captain of a rag-tag bunch that follows his lead into depths of depravity, narrates his life-story.

With hockey players enjoying a long-established reputation as the wild men of sports, you can certainly expect an adult tale of moral turpitude. Tortorella’s tale is a spiritual journey above all else, whether it is a quest for a championship, or a test of one’s moral character.

The story is built around the effort to commit every deadly sin they can encounter and break every Commandment that is set in stone. All the time there is an interesting parallel to Melville’s voyages. Far more metaphoric, the characters are like rats leaving a sinking ship, but are more familiar as the young players who hang around hockey rinks and become enamored of the lifestyle. This is NOT a young-adult novel.

The original story keeps its freshness and provides insights into the daily life, practice, and play on and off ice that can only come from someone who was there.

You may think the novel will only appeal to a certain fan of a political stripe, but self-knowledge is indeed a dangerous avenue to pursue. We aren’t sure how much of the tale is completely true—and how much of it is so unbelievable as to be utterly true.

These rough-and-tumble players are not figure skaters guilty of icing, but you will experience their notorious escapades. In the final analysis, as Tortorella’s book states, “The great shroud of the ice age rolled on as it rolled five thousand years ago.”  The human condition is indeed timeless as seen in one breathtaking season at a New England college.

 

Twin Peaks at a Crossroad, or at a Dead End?

DATELINE:  What Year Indeed

If Trump were president of Twin Peaks, and not David Lynch, we think all of those dead characters would’ve been sent back to purgatory tout suite. There is no place in this world for Dreamers, unless it is the sunny side of the Twilight Zone.

Most of the final episode is spent in Purgatory, or driving on desolate roads through Texas. We couldn’t tell them apart.

We saved our best for last. Unfortunately, David Lynch did not. So, we have watched the final episode, and there is less to report than usual. There is, however, more than meets the eye.

We love an aimless road trip. Call us a sucker for Waiting for Godot. We still are waiting. Now we have been joined by Laura Palmer and Agent Cooper.

Call us sympathetic: we understand that Agent Cooper and his assistant Diane have not seen each other in 25 years, and it is only natural that they spend a good portion of the last episode in bed having sex. However, based on her final reaction, it was unsatisfactory to her too.

This left Agent Cooper in a quandary, not to mention all the long-suffering viewers. He walked fast between those long red curtains to visit a one-armed man, Leland Palmer, and trees with a talking head.  Therefore, it’s only natural that Cooper and Laura, end up together, driving to nowheresville fast. It’s a dream couple.

In an effort to save Laura Palmer, who now has amnesia to go with her middle-age, she and Cooper end up in an unrecognizable Twin Peaks.  Cooper tells Laura that it’s in Washington state, not D.C.

As the clock winds down, Agent Cooper now is as befuddled as the rest of us. He asks Laura Palmer what year it is. Her response is out of the Fay Wray school of screaming responses.

Is it lights out finally? Will we have to wait 25 more years to find out that everyone is dead and no one cares much anymore?

We love Twin Peaks.  Next time we will bring a picnic basket.

Penultimate Twin Peaks

DATELINE: Down to the Finish Line

peaked

We’re going round the bend, literally, and figuratively, on the new David Lynch marathon in surreality, Twin Peaks.

For sixteen hours we have seen Dead People, People from Another Dimension, Weirdos, and maddening loose ends as well as standard plot holes. That’s the bargain with Lynch.

The recent show has started to blow up loose ends and loose characters, thankfully not waiting until ten minutes before denouement to drive the entire cast off one of the twin peaks of the title. So, Kyle MacLachlan has snapped out of his doldrum-idiot Doppleganger Dougie, and evil D.B. Cooper has dispatched his illegitimate son with electrifying alacrity.

In the meantime, Lynch has discovered a new star, Eamon Farren. Let’s hope he fares better than Dana Ashbrook or James Marshall in the next 25 years.

What more can be expected? Oh, Cooper’s assistant, long lost Diane turns out to be some kind of spirit from beyond, her connection to Dougie’s wife, Naomi Watts, now ignored in a puff of smoke and gunfire.

We saw Don Murray, formerly the leading man for Marilyn Monroe in Bus Stop, looking spry as he pushes 90 and thanked by Cooper for lending his old Hollywood fame to the tale.

There was a shoot-out in one of those foreclosed Las Vegas communities that didn’t make much sense. But, we never expect much sense.

When Cooper regains his wits, he is able to say, “I am the FBI,” with all the swagger fans of the show wanted to hear. Perhaps Sheriff Michael Ontkean will make an appearance in the final show.

Whatever will the final two-hour monstrosity of this TV Guernica give us? We know that Sherilyn Fenn has a revelation while looking in the mirror.

Twenty-five years passing will do that.

 

 

 

Twin Peaks 3: Episode 14 Update

DATELINE:  We See Dead People

bowie

Late David Bowie With Early MacLachlan

If we have learned any lesson this season, it is there is no such thing as a spoiler in Twin Peaks 3.  David Lynch’s surreal series is moving toward its conclusion, and the old characters, however dead they may be, are still viable plot movers.

Old time fans will be glad they have hung on to the lunacy by this time. Lynch now has begun to weave clips of the original show, 25 years ago, into the new plot.

This episode featured old Lynch as FBI Director Cole recounting a dream to Miguel Ferrer as his assistant Albert. In it, we see dark-haired young Lynch in conversation with young, still-dark haired Kyle MacLachlan as Agent Cooper. Director Cole’s old partner and friend shows up from 25 years ago, and it is none other than the late David Bowie.

He is in a scene with the late Miguel Ferrer.

Dana Ashbrook is now on the Twin Peaks Police Force, and James Marshall is now a night watchman in the infamous Twin Peaks Hotel. There, he works with a British boy who looks like his son—and has been directed to Twin Peaks by cosmic forces to find his “destiny.”

Lynch continues to be a grand proponent of directing actors to stare blankly at each other. It is both insightful and hilarious. He does it best with Ferrer who notes the absurdity of the universe.

We now learn too the connection between missing agent Dale Cooper, his assistant Diane, and the weird counter-point of Naomi Watts as Mrs. Dougie Jones.

The episode is dedicated to the memory of David Bowie who probably wished he could return to reprise his role in this grandiose season.

Why Him? Why This Movie?

DATELINE: More Francophobia

why him?

James Franco stars here. As we know, Franco alternates between serious, literary movies, and mindless, nuthouse comedies. This falls into the latter.

Here he plays an exasperating, offensive, foul-mouthed extreme version of his most irritating persona. Opposite him is Bryan Cranston playing a curdmudgeon father of a beautiful Stanford co-ed who is cohabitating with this lout.

He wants to marry her, though she is so conservative we can never figure out why they are together to begin with. Franco is so appalling that we wonder why anyone wants to be in the same movie.

Of course, the fly in the ointment is that Franco’s Laird Mayhew is a video-games entrepreneur billionaire who cavorts with the likes of Elon Musk. Yes, he appears.

In a twisted way, Cranston’s befuddled father is perfect and the air-headed script flies by with tasteless scene following even more tasteless scene. We have been watching too many high quality, artistic movies, and have been brought down to earth in a crash with this picture.

Franco must win over Cranston to win over Zoey Deutch. Megan Mullaly, Cedric the Entertainer, and Griffin Gluck are around for the ride. Keegan-Michael Key steals the picture largely as the overgrown “houseboy” (via the Inspector Clouseau movies, proudly plagiarizing Pink Panther).

In its own way, this is a perverse Xmas movie, complete with references to Macauley Culkin being home alone to make the entire concept completely incongruous.

You may laugh as the Millennials truly make the Baby Boomers take one on the chin.

In case you wonder, the hideous art hanging in Laird’s house all were done by James Franco, who else?

Stuffed shirts always loosen up in face of a James Franco onslaught. The film defies you not to laugh.

 

 

 

 

Johnny Cash: Up Close with His Manager

DATELINE:  Country Star Revealed

man in black  Director Holiff with Johnny Cash

In the first ten minutes of this documentary, with its realistic reenactments, you might think you are watching some outrageous fiction. But, it’s all true. You are about to enter the world of My Father and The Man in Black.

Saul Holiff was Johnny’s manager for nearly 15 years, through some of the worst moments of his addictions, black-outs, and temperamental snits.

Holiff alienated many people with his brash character, but he loved being in show biz, even on the outskirts. His business ties to Cash, like all personal management ties, were tenuous—and inevitably broke.

Yet, his son Jonathan never knew his father. He left home as soon as he could at age 18—and they almost never spoke. When his father committed suicide in 2005, he left no note.

But Jonathan’s mother said he left something else: boxes of audio diaries of his relationships with Cash and his sons. And herein lies a tale both shocking and fascinating.

Writing, directing, and producing this “tribute” to his misunderstood father seems an extraordinary feat by Holiff.

Even as a child, he often thought Cash was his father because every sentence spoken in front of him always contained father and Johnny Cash. They were inseparable. Saul introduced June to Johnny.

Cash wanted to overcome his drug-addled past and prison persona for being born-again. He became as addicted to Jesus as he was to pills.  He even made a religious film in the Holy Land, but it was cruel to ask his long-time manager, Jewish atheist Saul to play Caiaphas in one scene.

The break between them was not long after.

Using careful crafted re-enactments and voice imitators to read Johnny’s letters to Saul, this documentary seems to have melted into oblivion when it demands to be seen. Don’t miss it.

Point Blank: Right on Target

DATELINE:  Unusual Film Resurfaces

 point blank

Can it really be 50 years since John Boorman gave us his curious precursor to Twin Peaks, long before David Lynch had a brainstorm?

Point Blank confounded audiences in 1967 who were far less prepared for the kind of stuff Lynch gave us 25 years later. This film essentially introduced Boorman to serious audiences. It took a crime film and made it arty.

Lee Marvin is the dead Walker, left to die in haunted, empty Alcatraz after a botched crime pickup. Some undetermined time later, he is looking for revenge, in a gray suit with white hair. No one knows him by any other name, and everyone asks, “Aren’t you dead?”

Indeed.

Boorman films Marvin through screens, drapes, and other opaque filters. He even grapples with a ghostly sheet after he drives his nemesis off the penthouse roof.

Walker wants his money as well as revenge—and a litany of marvelous actors plays the hierarchy of the Mob, befuddled by him. John Vernon, Lloyd Bochner, and a marvelous and hilarious Carroll O’Connor, are his lineup.

Angie Dickinson spends a full minute trying to beat him up, slapping and punching the impervious Marvin in an amazing bit.

Marvin is indestructible and single-minded as Walker.

The film is short in minutes, but long on violent moments that were a revelation 50 years ago. The film plays with haunting memories repeatedly as Walker seems obsessed with reliving them, like a residual spirit.

It’s a tour de force by Lee Marvin and John Boorman. Just wonderful and fresh 50 years later.

 

 

 

Twin Peaks (s3 Half-Way Point)

 DATELINE:  NO Spoilers Possibletwin peaks

There is no such thing as a spoiler in Twin Peaks. We are not even sure we are still in Twin Peaks after the face of Laura Palmer emerges from the mist in the opening credits.

We have now come to the half-way point of no-return for Season 3 on the bizarre David Lynch TV series, and we can explain everything that happened and you will have no idea what we are talking about.

The episode started with Kyle McLachlan’s Doppleganger Agent D.B. Cooper in a jail break with an accomplice who promptly shoots and kills him. Then, he is beset upon by demonic spirits that apparently bring him back to life.

At this point there is a flashback to a flashpoint in the plot. We find ourselves in Desert Sands, New Mexico, as the first atomic bomb is detonated. If you think of this as a hole in the plot, you may have fallen into the trap.

We are then thrust into a five-minute Stanley Kubrick-style hallucinogenic trip inside a radioactive cloud. When we emerged, we found ourselves in a 1950s black and white horror movie with zombies murdering people.

Oh, yes, somewhere in there we found ourselves in the waiting room of an imperious theater where Lurch the Butler of the Addams Family sends a golden plasma bubble with the face of Laura Palmer back to Earth.

Back on Earth, an alien lizard with wings hatches from an egg near the site of the nuclear explosion in 1956 and enters the mouth of sleeping adolescent girl. Now we feel the Illuminati are lurking somewhere in the storyline.

Is that clear? Are you spoiled yet? Have you any idea if David Lynch has lost his lunch?

Yes, we will watch again next week, not that it matters.

Night Must Fall, or at Least Trip Lightly

wacky mcavoy

DATELINE:  Shyamalan’s Latest

Producers continue to give M. Night Shyamalan money to make movies of his choice, despite commercial and critical disparaging words.

The latest is called Split, about a man (if you can call him that in a supernatural thriller) with 24 personalities.  That’s a personality disorder with capital letters. It is about as overwrought as hyperbole can make it.

Shyamalan wrote this as well as directed. In terms of his writing, this film obviously came together after he saw William Wyler’s The Collector from 1965. That film is about a disturbed young man who kidnaps a beautiful girl and keeps her prisoner in hopes of making her fall in love with him.

This time, the man with the identity disorder kidnaps three women and keeps them prisoner in an elaborate underground prison. At least the John Fowler story of The Collector explained how he won the lottery which financed his mad caprices.

That’s not enough here. Shyamalan adds a touch of Hannibal Lecter and Psycho to the mix. That should pile-on adequately.

Don’t misjudge: this film has a rather wild performance by James McAvoy who limns about six personalities. He is highly watchable. Betty Buckley plays his therapist who is a classic enabler.

Shyamalan has all his usual Hitchcockian pretenses at hand: he makes a cameo again, sets all his films in Philadelphia, and loves to hear echoes of other movies. If you think this is his best since Sixth Sense, he will agree with you—as the sequel is already on the books, Mr. Glass.

Indeed, Bruce Willis makes a cameo at the end to promote the sequel. Nothing like trying to microwave your stew to guarantee an audience smells the aroma.

The film reaches the outer limits by the end credits, trying to sell us that psychosis is actually a means to reach the supernatural. Our grandmother used to say, “Balderdash,” and it still fits.

Twin Peaks, Trump Plains, & Celtics Lows

DATELINE:  LeBron James as Laura Palmer, Trump as D.B. Cooper

glowing orb

Chicken or egg? We can’t figure out if the Trump Administration has prepared us for the new series Twin Peaks, or whether Twin Peaks has prepared us for the continuing weirdness of the Trump presidency.

When we see President Trump putting his hands on a glowing orb, we know there is a conspiracy of billionaires to control the world. Of course, it is merely a futuristic ribbon-cutting scene from the most recent Star Wars movie. Either that, or it is opening a gateway to an alternate universe, like the plots of Twin Peaks.

By the same token, we feel as if watching the Cleveland Cavaliers with the Boston Celtics is like knitting by Madame Defarge while royalty is having their heads chopped off.

On Twin Peaks, agent DB Cooper has returned to the northwest after disappearing for 25 years. That David Lynch has such a sense of humor.  So far, McLachlan has not rubbed any glowing orbs, but has kissed dead Laura Palmer (Cheryl Lee).

On the Celtics, little Cousin IT (Isaiah Thomas) and AB (Avery Bradley) are from the same neck of the woods in Washington state which happens to be the setting for Twin Peaks. It could explain a lot about how the Celtics are playing like Laura Palmer’s body wrapped in plastic.

Even stranger, we were amazed to see Kyle McLachlan and Sheryl Lee looking just like they stepped out of a 1990s TV show.  It becomes even more amazing when David Lynch has to inject a phrase at the end of every episode of the show that the episode is dedicated to the memory of one of the cast members who is now dead. We mean really really dead dead, like the log lady Catherine Coulson and the FBI agent played by Miguel Ferrer.

As for the dead Celtics, they are merely playing in an alternate universe, sort of like Twin Peaks 25 years later. If there is a glowing orb in the NBA, they better start rubbing it now. Lebron is no Laura Palmer.

NFL Puts Lips Together & Blows

whistlegate

DATELINE: WHISTLEGATE

That’s Buffalo Bob’s Bills, Howdy Doody Rexy.

The Bills have come due—and whether Belichick has cash on hand, or credit up his hoodie sleeve only the four quarters will tell. Magician T-Rex Ryan plans on pulling quarters out of Tom Brady’s nose.

T-Rex’s defensive attack tormented Tom Brady, but truly befuddled the officiating crew, one of the worst Roger Goodell could send to Foxboro.

The big game did not test the ability to stay up late. It was paranoid fun.  It does test the ability to rise on Tuesday morning to work as per usual, but it sent Patriot fans into a frenzy of paranoia beyond their usual fringe.

Inadvertent Whistlegate showed up on Goodell’s doorstep screaming like a newborn banshee. Yes, blame the NFL for Whistle-gate.

Every game is different—and blowing out the Bills, a la the earlier game, may be like blowing smoke rings. You can’t have a Super Bowl ring unless you can blow smoke rings around your most arrogant and semi-talented opponents. The NFL just blew their whistles like Lauren Bacall did to Bogie.

Between the referees’ attempts to throw the game back to the Bison, Belichick prevailed—and the sight of Rex Ryan throwing an F-laden tirade on the sidelines made the game a classic of ineptitude.

Former Pat Rodney Harrison has said he hoped the Patriots would lose this one in order to relieve the pressure on them for a perfect season. It’s like wondering if the Patriot O-rings resemble the old NASA problem. We know the inevitable is closer than ever after last night’s victorious fiasco.

The Bills have been sent to clean the outhouse for another season, and they ought to be joined by the so-called officiating crew.

The Trumping of Patton

DATELINE: REINCARNATION OF AMERICAN HEROES

 Featured imageTrump or Patton?

As cultural phenomenon go, Donald Trump seems singular.

Yet, he is in the great tradition of American iconoclasts. He is a populist with appeal to shock the staid liberals and New Puritans. In case you forgot, there was a hero of World War II with much of the same bravado. He was an entertainer who wore ivory handled six shooters on his hips and rode a tank.

We refer to the pattern-breaker, General George S. Patton.

Donald Trump may have seen him played by George C. Scott in the Oscar-winning movie of 1970. Tough guy Scott played tough guy Patton now being channeled by tough guy Trump.

Patton appalled genteel America, but boy did the soldiers love him—even if he spilled their blood with his guts.

Patton was removed from command for his waggish tongue that embarrassed politicians. He hated politicians. He even dope-slapped a soldier who seemed shell shocked and unable to go out to the front lines. The media kept looking for a soft spot to do him in. They did eventually.

It may sound like a familiar refrain as the media looks to do in Donald Trump. In the meantime, Patton who believed in reincarnation may be the new Donald.

Patton was a breath of fresh air; the Donald has yet to drive a tank. We hope he won’t as we recall how the image ruined Michael Dukakis when he ran for president. Yet, Trump would look quite natural bulldozing his way across America in a tank.

Mutant Head Lice Rival Mutant Deflate-gate Stories

DATELINE:  To a Louse

Featured image

With disturbing news reports of mutant head lice now an epidemic in the United States, we found more than a few parallels to Deflate-gate.

Wasn’t it poet Robbie Burns who wrote his famous ode to Deflate-gate called “To a Louse!”

Though not a health risk, mutant lice are like deflated footballs, they have become a national nuisance.

These creepy little hair lovers used to respond to a quick-fix, but those days are over. And, like Deflategate, you now may realize that the crisis has grown to pressures higher than any football could withstand.

Failure to take a little louse seriously has also led to a resistant strain of air pressure gauges. 104 out of 109 strains of pigskin now have grown resistant to holding their air pressure. Standard over-the-counter referees are ill-equipped biologically to see, to feel, or to notice, any signs of deflated footballs.

If no one can tell that a case of deflation has taken over, how important is the crisis? Well, according to scientists, this problem has arisen because football is frequently played in cold weather and in changeable climates that tend to allow deflation to gain a foothold in kicking balls—and later the air seeps out of game balls.

Countless fans have now become aware of the scourge of high scoring games. The single bane worse than head lice in children would be head lice in quarterbacks who are dealing with itchy scalps while trying to hit a target 50 yards down the field.

Mutant stories of deflated footballs are growing more common and troubling at all levels of the sport, causing more and more lousy stories about Tom Brady and Roger Goodell to proliferate as fans look to any tonic to dump on the heads of the Deflate-gate attorneys.