Everything that is awesome.
Due to an upcoming move, our satellite service is mothballed and I have reconnected with the largely forgotten joys of Netflix. Ya’ know what? There is an absolute butt-ton of incredibly cool shows out there, most of them either totally unknown to me or relegated to the ‘yeah i gotta watch that sometime’ & promptly forgotten realm. In the last few weeks I have sat through the entirety of the following shows. Every one was worth it, and I can’t wait to see what I find next!
I might have skipped this entirely because the title is so similar to thirtysomething, and decent as that show might have been, I was looking for lighter fare that day. On the combined strength of Hugh Laurie & Benedict Cumberbatch I took a shot. Loved it. Quirky and just a little bit out there, it was exactly what I was looking for. I tend to enjoy most everything of Brit origin I watch and this one was no exception.
Being a closet aficionado of bargain basement old-school special effects, I have to say I am not a fan of CGI. In this case, it works. You never really expect ILM level quality, and I don’t honestly think I would have enjoyed this nearly as much without the faintly hokey computer generation. Again, it’s a Brit show, which gets it bonus points at the get-go. Andrew Potts and Hannah Spearritt made it for me, and I will definitely be watching out for him in the future.
I watched at this during the original second season and part of the third but lost interest when the alternate timeline started. Watched it straight through in about a week this time, and actually really enjoyed the timeline plot. Although some of the changes upon return to the new reality didn’t set well with me at first, I really enjoyed where they took it afterwards. It certainly did pump new life and interest into the series as a whole.
Black Books IMDB
This one I had never heard of, and actually knew nothing about any of the main actors except Bill Bailey. All I knew of Bailey was that he voiced the whale in Hitchiker’s Guide. I am now in absolute awe of Tamsin Grieg and Dylan Moran as well as Bailey. Yay for Brit shows, because they never let me down.
Okay, I admit it, I mixed my movie references. This post has nothing to do with Ghostbusters. I have simply ALWAYS wanted to post something with that title. Now, on with the sharing………..
I have needed a good laugh all afternoon. Finally got it and now I am passing it along for everyone else.
and for the bonus :
May you giggle loudly, snort your drink through your nose, and generally enjoy this as much as I. Thank you, and good night.
I am forlorn. I learned today that Jonathan Frid passed into rest Friday, April 13th 2012 of natural causes at Juravinski Hospital in his home town of Hamilton, Ontario. Best known for his signature role of Barnabas Collins on Dark Shadows, he was a man of class and a fine actor. Perhaps he might have smiled a bit at the thought that his last day among us was Friday 13th. It certainly puts an atmospheric and memorable bookend to his life. If he planned a dramatic gesture for his departure, he could not have done better. He will be missed. He was a fondly remembered part of my youth. Rest peacefully, Mr. Frid.
My playlist tonight is mostly made up of Rafferty. Some older stuff with Billy Connolly in the Humblebums, some from Stealer’s Wheel with Joe Egan, and some solo efforts. I love all of it. Something about his voice is simply so soothing. It is almost hypnotic. During the years I worked with babies, I discovered that Rafferty was the universal cure for what ails the tiny ones—from sick infants in the NICU to colicky ones in the regular nursery, playing Rafferty was a sure bet. He knocked ‘em all out, like ether. He has much the same effect on me. So here you go, a little of what I am enjoying right now (and I hope you enjoy it as well):
The Humblebums -
Snakes & Ladders (solo release) -
Night Owl (solo release) -
On A Wing & A Prayer (collaboration with Joe Egan) -
City To City (solo release) -
Mr. Rafferty passed away April 11, 2011 at the age of 63. I always hated that I never got the chance to see him perform in person.
Lee Zimmerman is an absolutely fascinating and talented marionette artist. This is probably the most interesting vid I have seen of his work. He also has a MySpace page for anyone interested in finding out more about him http://www.myspace.com/leezimmermanthepuppetguy .
stolen from http://theoatmeal.com/comics/wwddd
No movie is truly complete without a good score. Often the soundtrack stays with me long after most of the film has faded. These songs are my personal favorites, in no particular order and from a smattering of genres. Without them, the scenes they backed would not have had the same impact for me. I find myself humming them at random moments and in most cases was compelled to purchase either the soundtrack or a compilation by their respective composer or artist to obtain them.
Dmitri Shostakovich – Jazz Suite Waltz Number 2
First noticed this one during Eyes Wide Shut (Stanley Kubrick, 1999). It seems a steady popular choice for beautiful but non-distracting background music. I noticed it not long ago in a Nero Wolfe episode as well. I found it so beautiful, it immediately replaced The Canon In D as my favorite instrumental piece. It gets regular play at home and is one of my ringtones.
Nino Rota – A Time For Us
Heard in Romeo & Juliet (Franco Zefferelli, 1968). Beautiful. Heartbreaking. The innocence, playfulness, and tragedy of the entire film compressed into a little over 3 minutes. I have never heard an arrangement I didn’t love, but Nino Rota’s is by far the best. Another in my regular rotation on my playlist at home.
Roger Williams – Theme From Somewhere In Time (from Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody On A Theme Of Paganini, Variation 18)
Forever bound with Somewhere In Time (Jeannot Szwarc, 1980). So completely captures the mood of the film that I never hear it without scenes flashing through my head.
Strange Fruit (Jimmy Nail) – What Might Been
As a child of the 80′s, I loved the entire score of Still Crazy (Brian Gibson, 1998), but this song really caught me. One of my favorite artists is Jimmy Nail, but I heard him first here. Now, of course, I have several of his cds. Lots of airplay here, both in the house and in the truck.
Blue Oyster Cult – Don’t Fear The Reaper
I cannot think of any piece of music, anywhere, ever, that could have better captured the tone of this film. As with most of the pieces I list in this post, this song is forever linked in my mind with this movie.
Hans Zimmer – The Battle
Never, ever underestimate the sweeping power of music. If I had never seen or heard of Gladiator (Ridley Scott, 2000), I would still clearly see an epic battle in my mind while listening to this piece. Hans Zimmer has the ability to carry you away with his compositions, and I always enjoy listening to his scores. This is definitely my favorite, though.
John Williams (City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra) – Theme From Raiders Of The Lost Ark
Action, adventure, and the feel of an adrenaline rush in musical form. Perfectly captures the film, and the protagonist. The only thing missing is the sound of a bullwhip.
Roy Orbison – In Dreams
Blue Velvet (David Lynch, 1986) was the first David Lynch film I ever saw. It will always be my favorite. Everything about the scene with Stockwell’s performance of this creeps the s*#t out of me. I feel like I should check the closets and under the beds before I go to sleep after I watch it. Now that is an excellent use of a song.