The Twilight Zone – Complete Series Review – Season 1 Episode 5 – Walking Distance

Gig Young plays Martin Sloane a Manhattan  advertising VP burned out from modern life.  Driving his sports convertible through a rural area he realizes he’s at his home town (of course named Homewood).  He wanders around and realizes he’s back 25 years ago when he was an 11-year old.  He of course, meets himself and his parents.  And he causes trouble.  He accidentally causes his 11-year old self to fall off the carousel and hurts his leg.  Finally, his father realizes that Martin is who he says he is but that retreating into the past is wrong.  So some how or other he finds himself back in the present and although he is wiser he doesn’t appear any happier.

One small detail, a very young Ron Howard is a little boy playing marbles in the street near Martin’s boyhood home.

It’s a slight tale and not particularly poignant but I’ll give it a solid C.

Confirmation Hearings for William Barr as Attorney General Begin Today

This article hits some of the high points.  If Barr can begin controlling the Justice Department and get it working on the real legal problems we currently face (people being fired or de-platformed for being normal) then we might see life returning somewhat to normal.

https://thehill.com/homenews/senate/425327-five-things-to-watch-during-barrs-confirmation-hearing

Mining the Benedict Option for Practical Advice – Part 1

As I mentioned I’m seriously interested in starting some kind of local organization to allow me to impact the community around me. But other than hot air of, which I possess an abundance, I was short on practical know-how.   I started re-reading Rod Dreher’s,”The Benedict Option,” and I think it will be useful.  I previously reviewed it last year.

A Short Book Review of Rod Dreher’s – The Benedict Option – Part 2

But now I’m looking at it more as a handbook, so it will take a good deal more time to weigh the information to decide what is helpful to me.   At this point, at the very least it has given me a number of resources for researching directions to go.  If anyone else is looking for ways to build alternative social platforms I recommend that you take a look at Dreher’s book. There are definitely some useful starting points at the very least.  And even if your position is non-religious there are things to think about in this book.

 

 

The Twilight Zone – Complete Series Review – Season 1 Episode 4 – The Sixteen Millimeter Shrine

This is the homage to Sunset Boulevard.  Ida Lupino is playing an over the hill actress named Barbara Jean Trenton.  Martin Balsam plays her manager Danny Weiss who wants her to stop living in the past and rejoin the world.  But Barbara Jean wants it to be 1934 forever, back when she was a beautiful young star.  So basically, this is Norma Desmond from Sunset Boulevard except instead of murder we get urban fantasy.  So, no surprise, after she realizes she was too old for the movies the world no longer had any appeal.  So, of course, she ends up entering into the 16 millimeter film of the title.  She is seen walking off camera with all of her old friends from twenty five years ago.

Obviously, there are no surprises here.  It’s a straight forward wish fulfillment plot.  It’s a good story and I’ll give it a B.  Not bad.

Hell or High Water – A Movie Review

Hell or High Water is a movie about two brothers in West Texas, Toby and Tanner (played by Chris Pine and Ben Foster), that plan and carry out a bank robbing spree.  Jeff Bridges is Texas Ranger Marcus Hamilton who along with his partner Alberto are investigating this carefully planned series of robberies.  The movie follows both sides of the story.  We get into the heads of all four protagonists and understand their motivations and idiosyncrasies.  I won’t spoil the plot details or the ending but I would say this is one of the better movies I’ve seen in a few years.  It’s not a big movie and there is nothing very surprising about plot or character.  But the acting is good and the plot and dialog are spot on.  Another aspect of the movie that I really enjoyed was the soundtrack.  Unsurprisingly it’s country music and it even includes a track by Colter Wall, a young country singer songwriter that I enjoy.  But all the cuts fit into the action and enhance the movie for me.

The movie gives you both points of view.  The law enforcement officers, intent on stopping the crime spree and the outlaw brothers in their desperate attempt to get even with a system that they see as rigged against them.

I highly recommend this film.

The Twilight Zone – Complete Series Review – Season 1 Episode 3 – Mr Denton on Doomsday

This is a morality play dressed up in Western trappings.  Denton is a former gun hand turned town drunk.  He turned to drink because he had to shoot a sixteen-year old kid who came gunning for his reputation as the fastest gun.  One day while Denton is lying on the ground after being humiliated by the local bully he finds a Colt pistol and picks it up.  When the bully tries to use the gun as an excuse to murder Denton in a shootout Denton accidentally fires off a few shots that each time hit a target that saves his life.  Inspired by his change of luck, he walks away from the saloon and tries to restart his life.  But his success with the gun reignites his reputation and a gunfighter challenges him to a duel.  While preparing to sneak out of town before the fight Denton runs into a travelling peddler named Henry J. Fate.  We’ve been seeing Mr. Fate in every scene where Denton had his amazing luck with the gun and so we already know he’s the source of the gun and Denton’s success.  He’s peddling a “potion” that makes anyone who takes it a dead shot for exactly ten seconds.  Denton accepts the potion and shows up to the duel.  When his opponent also drinks a potion before the gunfight it is of course not shocking that both shooters end up hitting their opponents in the gun hand.  And a conveniently present doctor informs each man that he will never be fast with a gun again.  Mr. Denton tells his young opponent that they are both blessed with being free of the gunfighter’s fate.  Denton is played by Dan Duryea who was a fairly well-known character actor of the Hollywood golden age and the town bully was played by Martin Landeau who was a well known television actor especially from the long running, Mission Impossible series.  Landau shows up in several other episodes of the Twilight Zone.  I would rate this episode as fair.  The storyline is mildly entertaining but hardly original or surprising.

Tucker Carlson Hits Another Home Run

This is so on the nose I hope the President listens to it and congratulates Carlson for saying it.

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2019/01/13/tucker_carlson_free_speech_of_all_americans_is_at_risk.html

Once the new AG is sworn in I hope he does exactly what Tucker is talking about.  Go after companies and the non-profits who goad them into firing people over speech and put a stop to it.  Finally someone in the mainstream media talking straight about this stuff.  It’s about time.

Parliament Votes on Brexit This Week

I read three different articles on what the choices are and what’s likely to happen.  Damned if I know.

https://www.nysun.com/foreign/brexit-beckons-the-courage-of-thos-paine/90535/

If May’s deal is voted down, which is likely, then a confidence vote is likely.  What happens then is anyone’s guess.

So, here’s wishing well to the English and their desire to be free of the European Union.  May they succeed soon.

 

13JAN2019 – American Greatness Post of the Day – Dump The National Emergencies Act by Julie Kelly

The title of the post is deceptive.  Kelly is making the case that using the National Emergencies Act when there is an emergency is already a routine situation that and if it isn’t going to be used when an actual emergency exists then they might as well eliminate it altogether.

Dump The National Emergencies Act

The worry many on the Right have is that it will be used by Democrats when they have the Presidency again for everything from Global Warming to Snowflake Bullying.  To my mind that is hardly a reason to disarm ourselves against the one truly existential threat to America in our time.  Grow up Republicans, you can’t win without fighting.

The Twilight Zone – Complete Series Review – Season 1 Episode 2 – One for the Angels

A sidewalk pitchman (the guy with the foldable suitcase/table full of cheap junk) named Lou Bookman (Ed Wynn) is visited by Death.  Not wanting to die he negotiates a delay until he can “Make a Pitch for the Angels.”  Death agrees to this but once the agreement is made Bookman gloats that he’ll stop making pitches forever.  But the consequences involve the death in his place of a small child that Bookman knows.  The little girl is struck by a truck and will die at midnight when Bookman was scheduled to die.  Bookman awaits Death and delays him by distracting him with his most persuasive sales pitch and succeeds in saving the girl’s life.  And of course, that pitch was the “One for the Angels.”  And at that point Mr. Bookman is ready for his journey with Death who really isn’t a bad guy.

Wynn was a comic actor of the vaudeville era.  My only other memory of him was a small part in the original Mary Poppins movie from the 1960s.  The whole teleplay is highly sentimental and affected but it works.  It’s a gentle fantasy that tugs at the heartstrings and appeals to our sympathy for the little guy who also happens to be a nice guy.  For myself, being a rank sentimentalist, it appeals to my childhood view of how the world should be.  So, it feels comfortably familiar.  In other words, it’s nostalgic escapism and sometimes that’s exactly what I want.  You have to decide for yourself if this type of story is acceptable entertainment for you.