Sunday, November 30, 2014

NFL Films: Era of Excellence - The 1980s

Source:The New Democrat

The 1980s National Football League was an era of cookie-cutter stadiums, concrete hard Astroturf fields, dome stadiums especially for teams who played in cold weather cities, like Minneapolis. And it was basically the birth of the passing age in the NFL. The illegal contact rule and the new blocking rules of 1978 and new offensive-minded head coaches like Bill Walsh, Tom Flores, Joe Gibbs, Dan Reeves, Don Coryell, Joe Walton, Sam Wyche really opened up offensive football and the league has only continued to move in that direction ever since.

It was an era where the dominate Steel Curtain Pittsburgh Steelers were no more and where the Los Angeles Raiders who probably should've taken over for the Steelers as the new dominant team in the NFL, didn't quite live up to that. Even though all in all they had a pretty good decade winning two Super Bowls, but 1986 or so were no longer a championship contender in the NFL. And became a franchise just trying to make the AFC Playoffs every year. And what happened was the San Francisco 49ers took that mantle instead from the Steelers. And became great team on offense and defense throughout the decade.

But what is great about football, it is not what I call arenaball, what is called arena football. As much as Roger Goddell might want to change that and turn the NFL into a total offensive league, there is still two sides of the game, offense and defense. And there were still great defensive teams and players in the 1980s. Like with Chicago Bears 46 defense led by Buddy Ryan, who took that to Philadelphia as the Eagles new head coach. And in New York with their elephant two-deep defense that the Giants played led by head coach Bill Parcells and Bill Belichick.

The 1980s was an era for the NFL where the great teams of the 1970s like the Steelers, Raiders and Dallas Cowboys, Minnesota Vikings took a step back and needed to regroup and come back in the 1990s as championship contenders again. And where new teams like the San Francisco 49ers, Redskins, New York Giants, Chicago Bears, Denver Broncos, Cleveland Browns stepped up and either became champions or at least championship contenders. And a decade where the NFL just became more popular and more balanced. Where offenses and defenses were now treated equally under the rules.

Friday, November 28, 2014

CBS Sports: NFL 1978- Week 6-San Francisco 49ers @ Los Angeles Rams: First Quarter

Source:The New Democrat

This really looks like a mismatch on paper with the San Francisco 49ers finishing 2-14 in 1978 and the Los Angeles Rams finishing 12-4 and running away again with the NFC East title as they made a habit of doing in the 1970s. And if it wasn't for the great 49ers-Rams rivalry, at least when the Rams were in Southern California, I wouldn't of bothered to of post this. But this was a great rivalry in the 1950s, 1960s to a certain extent, the 1970s and the 1980s. With a lot of great games with the teams not liking each other.

The Rams were sort of in transition in 1978, with head coach Chuck Knox moving on to Buffalo to coach the Bills and this being the last season for the 49ers before Bill Walsh completely took over the football operations there in 1979. He inherited a bad football team with a few good young players. Like offensive lineman Keith Farnhorse, Randy Cross, wide receiver Freddie Solomon and a few others. But the 1978 49ers season is why they went to Bill Walsh in 1979.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Truman Tucker: A Little History of the Minnesota Vikings

Source:The Daily Press

When you look at teams that should've won championships but didn't, I look at teams that were really the best at what they did in their league for that year. Teams that had everything on paper, the talent, the chemistry, the character, the coaching. Teams that stayed healthy and finally, but definitely not last, teams that lost their big game to a team they should've not only beat, but lost to a team they should've whipped, that's the 1998 Minnesota Vikings.

They had the best offense in the NFL in 1998, running basically (what I call) the Spread Vertical Offense the offense that Sid Gilman invented in the 1950s with Sid Gilman with the Los Angeles Rams, with Norm Van Brocklin, Leroy Hirsch and company. That Al Davis adopted in the 1960s with the Oakland Raiders, where you have at least wide receiver if not two WR running a post-route on every play. You push the safety's back to open up the rest of the field so you can also work passes to your slot-receivers, tight ends and even running backs. Basically forcing the defense to cover the whole field, it takes a great offensive line and quarterback to be successful in an offense like this.

You also need a great QB who can throw deep and accurately, but doesn't get too greedy and who works the rest of the field. You need a solid running game as well to keep defenses honest. But again we are talking about the 98 Vikings here right, they had all of that. Randall Cunningham showing the world how great a QB he could be and not just a great talent. The OL with offensive guard Steve Hutchinson, center Matt Birk, tackle Corey Stringer,all Pro Bowlers, all big strong and mobile. Pro Bowler Robert Smith at RB and all purpose RB, reminds me a little of Marcus Allen, had he not retired early would probably be in the Hall of Fame.

The 1998 Viking had really three deep threats who were all big and tall at WR that could all run. Randy Moss as a rookie Chris Carter the 2nd best WR of the 1990s behind only Jerry Rice and Jake Reed as your third WR. Moss and Reed running post-routes with Carter running the inside routes with a lot of room to run. The Vikings were a speed team playing in a dome stadium perhaps the loudest stadium in the league in the Metrodome.

The Vikings played on turf they had the perfect environment playing the two-gap cover-two defense with four pass rushers up front led by defensive tackle John Randle who'll be in the Hall of Fame. Keeping your safety's deep so even if you don't get the pass rush, you prevent the big play. They didn't have a great defense, but when you're scoring 35 points a game and you give up 20 your defense is good enough. But it wasn't good enough in the 1998 NFC Final to the Atlanta Falcons losing to a team that was 7-9 in 1997, they hadn't made the playoffs since 1995 and went 9-7 that year to make the playoffs. The 98 Vikings were a team that had the total package, kinda like a fast break basketball team that would get some early stops and run you out of the building on offense.

Super Bowl 33 played in January 1999 (with the famous Ally Landry Tostitos Commercial is really the only thing I remember about that game. The best team in the AFC in the Denver Broncos that were I believe 13-3 in 1998 coached by Mike Shanahan with QB John Elway, TE Shannon Sharpe, RB Terrell Davis and company. Against a jump start Atlanta Falcons team coached by Dan Reeves who was a big reason for their success and a lot of players that had career years and didn't do much before or after that. With QB Chris Chandler, WR Tony Martin, TE OJ Santiago and others. When it should've been the Vikings and Broncos in Miami playing one of the best Super Bowls ever.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Real World 51: Redskins Magic: The Story of the 1982 Super Bowl Champion Washington Redskins

Source:The Daily Press

Of the three Super Bowl Championships that the Washington Redskins won, the 1982 Championship is my favorite because no one other than the Redskins themselves, expected them to do anything. I believe the Redskins knew they were good. Joe Theisman knew he was a good quarterback and could play. John Riggins knew he was a good tailback who just needed an opportunity and be able to play the right position tailback not fullback. They knew they had a very good offensive line, if not the best in the NFL. They knew they had a good defense, giving up the fewest points in the league in 1982.

But no one else knew, because the Redskins were a collection of players, their main players that other teams had given up on or didn't bother drafting. Like offensive tackle Joe Jacoby who will be in the Hall of Fame, offensive guard Russ Grimm who's in the Hall of Fame by the way. Center Jeff Bostic was cut by the Philadelphia Eagles a big rival of the Redskins. So as a Redskin fan myself, it's great that we took both QB Sonny Jurgenson and Jeff Bostic from the Eagles. And a lot of the other players were holdovers from the George Allen regime, the "Over the Hill Gang".

People like OT George Starke, defensive tackle Dave Butz, kicker Mark Mosely who was the NFL MVP in 1982. But some of the Redskins key players were drafted after Bobby Beatherd became general manager in 1978 replacing George Allen and drafted some of the players, so the Redskins were starting to regroup in the late 1970s. With players like tight end Don Warren, linebacker Monte Coleman, LB Mell Kauffman, LB Rich Milot, LB Neal Olkewitz who the rest of the NFL probably thought was too small. But started for two Super Bowl Champions in Olkewitz's case.

The 1982 Redskins were a collection of holdovers, free agents that no one else wanted or drafted and a group of players that were drafted before the Joe Gibbs era. And Joe Gibbs knew that he had a good team with the Hogs on the OL, QB Joe Theisman, TB John Riggins, WR Art Monk, WR Charlie Brown, one of the best defenses in the NFL. Not one of the most talented, but one of the best and that's different. With defensive end Dexter Manley, DT Darryl Grant, DT Dave Butz, the LBs that I just mentioned. Vernon Dean and hard-hitting Mark Murphy in the secondary.

But the rest of the NFL didn't know that the Redskins were a good team and nobody else respected them as NFC East Champions or the number one seed in the NFC. Which was perfect because the best time to strike is when your opponents aren't ready for you. And the way to earn your respect is by winning, winning playoff games and winning championships. Which is exactly what the Redskins did in 1982, take out their disrespect against their opponents.

That's what made the 1982 Redskins so special and I believe are still the best Redskins Super Bowl Champion. They were a collection of very good players that most people never heard of, all put into one championship package. Led by Joe Gibbs and his coaching staff the 1982 Redskins were so good that they could take it to the best defense in the NFL if you look at their talent in the Dallas Cowboys with their Doomsday Flex Defense. That probably had the best defensive line in the NFL with DE Ed Jones, the best DT in the NFL in Randy White, arguably the best DT of all-time, and DE Harvey Martin.

The Redskins ran the ball down the Cowboys Flex Defense throat with John Riggins and the Hogs and they ran it down Randy White's throat with OG Russ Grimm smashing and blowing Randy White out-of-the-way play after play and it was great. That's how good the 1982 Redskins were and I'm not sure a lot of people understand that.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Harry Ransom Center: The Mike Wallace Interview- Diana Dors (1957)

Source:Harry Ramson Center; English Muffin being interviewed by Mike Wallace on The Mike Wallace Interview, in 1957.
Source:The New Democrat

I don't know a whole lot about Diana Dors. Over the last few months I've been watching a few of her films to get to know more about her, because what I've seen and heard about her, has been very interesting and have been pretty impressed. The so-called Silent Generation of people born in the mid to late 1920s and 1930s lets say, produced several very attractive Hollywood goddess's that all had multiple talents. Gorgeous, sexy baby-face women that all had multiple talents. Marilyn Monroe, Jayne Mansfield and Diana Dors are all from this era.

There are several others from this era including Kim Novak, Angie Dickenson and Barbara Eden. But I mention Marilyn, Jayne and Diana, because they were very similar in talents and abilities and perhaps even personalities and how they presented themselves. And were all advertised as Hollywood bombshells that could do multiple things. Both Marilyn and Jayne just didn't bomb out, but both died in their mid-thirties from apparent suicides from drug abuse. Diana by far had the longest and most successful career from these three entertainers.

That is a big reason why I'm so interested in Diana Dors. She made it, unlike Marilyn Monroe and Jayne Mansfield. She had a fairly long career, especially compared to the others and wasn't just a Hollywood bombshell or a blonde bimbo. She wasn't a bimbo, but someone who had a very good career as an actress and had staying power. And had a successful career as an actress for thirty years until she did in the mid 1980s. She died early as well in her early fifties, but had a very good and even long career, unlike Marilyn and Jane.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Barry Levinson: Wag The Dog (1997)

The late 1990s was a crazy and fascinating time for many reasons politically and other things and also one of the best periods for Hollywood as far as making movies. Some of my favorite movies of all-time come from 1997-99. Wag the Dog 1997 being one of them, Jackie Brown 1997 being another as far as I'm concern the best Quentin Tarratino movie of all-time. Out of Sight 1998 being another one, Primary Colors 1998 another one of my favorite movies. Cop Land 1997, The Big Lebowski 1998 maybe my favorite comedy of all-time with a great comedy duo in Jeff Bridges and John Goodman. Very Bad Things 1998 another very funny movie, Wild Things 1998 very funny.

But one movie in particular because it fit in perfectly with the times especially politically. The Monica Lewinski scandal breaks in January 1998 the same month that the Pope visits Cuba which I doubt made the United States Government very happy especially with their embargo policy of Cuba. And also when President Clinton was probably at his most popular. Wag the Dog came out about a year earlier, in the Summer of 1997, two American embassies in East Africa were bombed and then America attacks both Sudan and Afghanistan. 

Because the Clinton Administration believed that the Sudanese Government had a role of the African bombings. Again we attack Afghanistan as well that same month August 1998, but here's the thing and why Wag the Dog is so relevant. That movie is about people working for the White House creating the appearance of a war in order to get the media and people's attention off the latest sex scandal of the President.

After America attacked Sudan and Afghanistan by sending in missile strikes, Republicans in Congress Senator Dan Coates of Indiana whose generally a pretty rational and responsible person, right away questions whether the missile strikes had something to do with the Lewinski scandal. And was done as a distraction just like in the movie Wag the Dog and even said something to that effect. "I wonder or I hope this is not a Wag the Dog moment for President Clinton". The movie came out just a few months before the Lewinski scandal broke. Wag the Dog is a movie about the President being in trouble with another sex scandal. He's a popular President up until the scandal and looks like he's flying to reelection.

But the scandal breaks and of course his opponent in the race a U.S. Senator played by Craig Nelson try's to make the most out of it. Senator Nelson lets say is way down in the polls and is looking for anything he can to break through. Someone in the White House calls in a veteran big shot political strategist to deal with the scandal played by Robert DeNiro and he gets the idea that what the President needs is a distraction. To get the country's attention off of the sex scandal and comes up with the idea of a fake war and hire a Hollywood producer played by Dustin Hoffman to put this show together. 

Wag the Dog is a great movie for several reasons, one because of how relevant it is, perhaps not realistic though especially in the information age. And this movie did come out in 1997 as far as them being able to cover up a fake war without the Defense Department, CIA or someone knowing about it. But it's still a very funny movie, well written and a great cast Robert DeNiro, Dustin Hoffman, Bill Macy, Ann Heche, Craig Nelson, Dennis Leary and others. And how desperate that these politicos were to save a Presidency and would even create a fake war to do that.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

The Best Favorites: Planes, Trains & Automobiles (1987)

Source:The New Democrat

Plains Trains and Automobiles is kind of personal to me, because it reminds me of a guy I grew up with. If he were to ever read this post would probably know this is about him, even if I never tell him about this post. But the Dell Griffith character played by John Candy, reminds me of my friend who I grew up with. The overbearing, but kindhearted guy who always screws up and just doesn’t screw up for himself, but makes mistakes that affects other people, including people he cares about.

Neal Paige played by Steve Martin, a Chicago advertising man who has business in New York City right before the Thanksgiving holiday in 1987. But finishes that and is now headed back to Chicago. But runs into all sorts of issues just trying to get back to Chicago from New York. Which is only about a two-hour flight. But he has trouble just getting to the airport in New York because Del Griffith unknowingly steals his cab.

Neal runs into Del again at the airport at the gate while they are waiting for the flight to Chicago and of course not only is the flight delayed, but they happen to be on the same flight and sitting in the same coach seating section. But Neal is only in coach because he gets bumped from first class by the head stewardess. But it only gets worst because he is now not only in coach instead of first class, but in the middle seat with obnoxious an asshole in Dell who won’t shut up, except when he falls asleep on Neal.

But like I said it only gets worst for Neal. Because Chicago is going through another bad snowstorm even in November and the New York flight can’t land in Chicago, or even in Milwaukee which is just about a hundred miles north of Chicago. They can’t land in Minneapolis or even St. Louis which are just about a four-hour drive from Chicago and a half-hour flight because of the snowstorm. They have to land in Wichita, Kansas, which is closer to Kansas City than St. Louis.

So now Neal and Del decide to get back to Chicago from Wichita together and having to use other transportation than a plane to do that. They do it together because Del has these connections with these transportation services and Neal has the money to finance these trips. But it is just one screwup after another. Like their train breaking down about an hour outside of St. Louis. They breakup temporarily in St. Louis, but get back together because Neal is unable to rent a car to drive from St. Louis to Chicago and Dell is and you need to see that scene to see why for yourself.

This is a great movie especially if you are someone who actually enjoys holiday movies. But if you are someone who tends to see holiday movies as cheesy, you’ll like this movie as well. Because it is not about what families do together over the holidays, but what some people have to do just to get home in time for them and a great look at how stressful just traveling during the holiday can be. Plus this is one of the funniest moves you could possibly ever see as well.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

CBS: WKRP- Turkeys Away (1978)

Source:IMDB- WKRP News on the spot reporter Less Nessman (played by Richard Sanders) covering the attack of the flying turkeys, that has just invaded Cincinnati, Ohio.

Source:The New Democrat 

“This is the signature episode, the one that first comes to mind when one thinks of WKRP in Cincinatti. On air, Dr. Johnny Fever tells his fellow babies about Turkey Day doings. Out on the streets, “oh the humanity”… Mr. Carlson stages a top-secret holiday promotion and ends up ruffling a lot of feathers.” 

From IMDB 

“This is it… the infamous 1978 “turkey Thanksgiving giveaway” as reported LIVE from the Pinedale Shopping Center by crack newsman Les Nessman for WKRP (in Cincinnati)! The full episode is “Turkeys Away” from season one. A classic clip!” 

Source:Nells Stuff- WKRP News on the spot reporter Less Nessman (played by Richard Sanders) covering the attack of the flying turkeys, that has just invaded Cincinnati, Ohio.

From Nells Stuff 

"Later, we see GM Art "Big Guy" Carlson - played by actor Gordon Jump, who died in 2003 - back at the radio station pecked and bewildered . He ended the episode uttering the infamous line: "As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly!" 
Source:The Atlanta Journal- Jan Smithers, Gordon Jump & Frank Bonner. Apparently Mr. Carlson, was giving away brains including his own, when he should've been giving away turkeys. 

Mr. Arthur Carlson: “As God as my witness, I thought turkeys could fly.” If you are familiar with the WKRP show, you wouldn’t be surprised that Arthur Carlson would say something like this and be completely serious. He always seemed like he was operating about 6 beers short of a six pack. And maybe that’s because he already drank all the beers and lost some brain cells.

I don’t believe there has been a funnier episode in TV history and certainly not on WKRP. This is the episode that this show is known for that was a hit for I believe five seasons. And this show is one of the best sitcoms of all-time as far as being able to make people laugh. And having the writers and cast that can deliver the lines and perform the scenes. So this show had a very good record at simply making people laugh being about a small market radio station in Cincinnati that is just struggling to get noticed and get positive attention.

To be clear, WKRP was not about successful people, winners who run into funny situations. Like Seinfeld or Cheers or MASH. WKRP is really about assholes who can’t help themselves who are way in over their head and probably should be driving cabs or waiting tables or working at grocery stores. If anyone would hire them, except for Andy, Jennifer, Johnny, Venus who could probably be successful working at major radio stations in big markets.

But with WKRP, it’s these assholes who think way more of themselves that they could ever be in their best drunken or marijuana fantasies, who happen to be working at a radio station in a major city, but small market in Cincinnati who regularly find themselves in these impossible, hysterical situations because they can’t help themselves. They don’t know what the hell they are doing, they are in way over their heads and have way too much responsibility. And as a result are always screwing up and the turkey drop episode is the perfect example of that.

The whole line with Arthur Carlson the General Manager at WKRP (played by Gordon Jump) saying that “God as my witness, I thought turkey’s could fly”, is the perfect example of what this show was about. Carlson gets this braindead idea that as a promotion for his station he’s going to give out free turkey’s for Thanksgiving by dropping them in the street from a helicopter. “What could possibly go wrong with that?” Is what you would be thinking when you don’t know any better.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Axel Reyes: John F. Kennedy (1983)

Source:The Daily Press

There have been several movies about John F. Kennedy. Because even though he only lived forty-six years there were so many things that went on in his life that were worth writing and filming about. Like his Navy career, what he did right after that trying to decide what he would do the rest of his life. His first campaign for the House of Representatives in 1946, his time in the House, he was a bit of a playboy there. 

And not very disciplined, but of course he had the great name and was such a charming man and likable. His friendship with Richard Nixon in the House and later in the Senate. Sen. Kennedy's name and charm was good enough for him to keep his job in the House and then even running for the Senate in 1952. His first Senate campaign of course being elected the same year that Dwight Eisenhower.

Jack Kennedy was elected to the Senate in 1952 and served in the last Republican Congress until 1995 with the Gingrich Revolution. Jack Kennedy's time in the Senate, where he becomes more serious and takes the job seriously and puts in the time and work because of course he had bigger goals, Sen. Kennedy writes a book in the Senate Profiles in Courage where there was some controversy about whether Sen. Kennedy wrote the book or was the book written by Ted Sorenson one of his Senate staffers. 

Adlai Stevenson the 1956 Democratic nominee considers Sen. Kennedy as his Vice Presidential nominee which would've been a disaster for Sen. Kennedy. Because GOV. Stevenson lost to President Eisenhower in a landslide and Kennedy wouldn't of made much of a difference. I believe Hollywood for the most part has done a very good job with Jack Kennedy with making movies about him. 

Unlike Oliver Stone with Richard Nixon, they haven't tried to cover Jack Kennedy's whole life with one huge movie. They've broken his life up in several stage. There was one mini-series alone  I believe shown by CBS about the Kennedy's relationship between them. Especially Jack and Bobby with union leader Jimmy Hoffa. Another movie about the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962 from 2000, another movie about Sen. Kennedy's involvement in Civil Rights. A new Mini Series in 2011 about the Kennedy Presidency, a movie about Jack Kennedy's navy career.

You could make another movie about Jack Kennedy's Congressional career or the great presidential election of 1960 that featured Jack Kennedy and Dick Nixon between two future presidents. Or another movie about the Bay of Pigs Crisis in 1962 the failed attempt to oust Fidel Castro as President of Cuba. There are so many things that happened in Jack Kennedy's life that are fascinating that are worth making public either by book, TV or movie that trying to cover the whole life in one movie or mini-series is too much, because you're bound to miss something. 

The Kennedy mini-series from 1983 with Martin Sheen is a pretty good, but not great mini-series. And it focus's just on the Kennedy Presidency, starting on Election Night 1960 when of course Sen. Kennedy is elected President in one of the closest presidential elections of all-time beating of course a sitting Vice President who worked for a very popular President in Dwight Eisenhower beating Dick Nixon in 1960, a very long election night. Sen. Kennedy finds out that he's just been elected President 6 or 7 the next morning. Jack Kennedy deserves several movies about him, all focusing on different aspects of his life.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Gorgeous Celebs: The Best of Raquel Welch

Source:The New Democrat

There hasn't been a better looking women since Marilyn Monroe died than Raquel Welch. That's how high she stands out, a hot sexy baby who at 74 years old still has those qualities. Who can sing, dance, act, make people laugh and even right while doing those things. She's gift from heaven down to men because of all of those traits, that is a national treasure that always commands respect. 

And she's still going strong and still does not look like an older women, senior citizen who has been eligible for Medicare and Social Security for what nine years now. Why, because she's still a hot baby-face sexy baby goddess who takes care of herself and doesn't want to look old or go old and as a result keeps providing men with countless images of her that a man with Alzheimer's disease couldn't forget even if they wanted to. And leaving women young enough to be her daughter and even granddaughter jealous as a result. 

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Otto Preminger: The Man With The Golden Arm (1955) Starring Frank Sinatra & Kim Novak

Source:Turner Classic Movies- Chairman Frank Sinatra and Hollywood Goddess Kim Novak.

Source:The New Democrat  

"In the late 1940s, Frankie Majcinek, who is known as Frankie Machine, returns to Chicago's South Side, which is mostly inhabited by Polish Americans, after serving a six-month sentence at a federal narcotics hospital. The denizens of Antek's Tug `n' Maul Tavern, Frankie's favorite bar, are pleased to see Frankie, especially his best friend, "lost dog finder" Sparrow. Although Frankie's former drug supplier, Nifty Louie Fomorowski, offers Frankie a free "fix," Frankie refuses and vows to Sparrow that he has kicked narcotics for good and intends to become a drummer for a big-name band. Frankie proudly shows off the drums he was given at the hospital, and after sending Sparrow to find him some new clothes, goes to the roominghouse where he lives with his wheelchair-bound wife Zosh.

The neurotic Zosh, determined to keep Frankie with her by whatever means necessary, has manipulated him for three years by playing on his guilt over causing the accident that injured her while he was driving drunk. Zosh is dubious about his plans to become a musician and urges him to return to dealing poker for Zero Schwiefka. Frankie's consistent method of dealing has earned him a city-wide reputation as "the man with the golden arm," but Frankie is determined to improve his life so that he is not tempted to return to drugs. Frankie calls Harry Lane, a musical agent referred to him by his doctor at the narcotics hospital, and makes an appointment to see...  

Source:Scott Charles- Frank Sinatra: The Chairman of the Board. who is currently locked up in this scene.

"A strung-out junkie deals with a demoralizing drug addiction while his crippled wife and card sharks pull him down. Directed by Otto Preminger. Starring Frank Sinatra, Kim Novak and Eleanor Parker."

From Scott Charles

Source:Bolinha Franca- Hollywood Goddess Kim Novak.

Frank Sinatra was overpaid to be able to work with Kim Novak. The pleasure was all his to be able to work with a hot sexy baby like Kim that he got to work with and see everyday. Who was also a pretty good actress and I’m sure Kim liked Frank as well. Not putting down Frank's ability as an actor, because I think he was a hell of an actor, but just seeing a working with Kim everyday would be enough incentive to work with her. 

If you've seen the movie Pal Joey and are familiar with that, which I saw again last week, this movie is fairly similar to Pal Joey. Except Frank is already sort of a made man in the entertainment business in the sense that he's already successful. 

In The Man With The Golden Arm, Frank plays an up-incoming musician who hasn't made it yet, who has a checkered past including doing time. And has to do other things to pay his bills including gambling.

Frank also plays a drug addict in this movie, when in Pal Joey he was sober basically the entire movie. But in both movies he meets Kim Novak who is an entertainer herself working at local clubs and they get involved in both movies. Except in Golden Arm, Kim saves Frank from his addiction and helps him get cleaned and then they get involved. This time the woman saves the man in the movie. 

Monday, November 10, 2014

Movie Clips: Vertigo (1958) Jimmy Stewart & Kim Novak: 'Let's Wander Together'

Source:The New Democrat

I could simply listen and watch Kim Novak until Israel and Palestine came to peace and agree to a two-state solution. There's just something about her voice and those eyes and cheeks that just makes me want to go "aw, she's so sweet and sexy". Angie Dickinson who is from the same generation as Kim has the exact same effect on me. And not only that, but her movies were really good and she worked for and with great people like Jimmy Stewart and Alfred Hitchcock. So you got to see her in great roles.

This scene right here is just coming after Madeline spending the night or a big part of the night at Scottie's apartment in San Francisco the nigh before. They were complete strangers, but she fell into the San Francisco Bay and Scottie rescued her and brought her back to his place. He was paid by her husband to follow her because the husband claimed to be worried about her mental condition. What Scottie wasn't aware of was that a lot of this was part of a big act that the husband was setting up to cover up a murder. And they were using Scottie in this process.
Source:Movie Clips

Sunday, November 9, 2014

CBS Sports: NFL 2003- Super Bowl 38- Charlotte Panthers vs New England Patriots- Beyonce Knowles: Proud To Be An American

Source:CBS Sports- Beyonce Knowles Proud To An American, at Super Bowl 38, in Houston, Texas. 
Source:The New Democrat

"Beyonce - Proud To Be An American"

From Mariha Canha

Source:FRS FreeState- Proud to be an American
I like the Beyonce version of this great song more than the Lee Greenwood version of this song that is 20-30 years older. And not because the Beyonce version is more current. But I'm just more of an R&B fan than a pop fan, but both singers do a great job of honoring I believe at least the most important Americans that we have which is our military veterans. And the people who defend our freedom risk their lives to protect our freedom and in too many cases give their lives. And leave their families back to defend our freedom.

Which is what Veterans Days is all about and something that only the anti-military Far-Left and to a certain extent Libertarian-Right in America can't seem to grasp. And if anything tend to see our military as part of the problem in defending peace and fighting for peace and defending our freedom and this is really the nice way of putting how the anti-military Far-Left and Libertarian-Right in America tends to look at the American military.

Veterans Day is not just an extra day off or a three day weekend in a beautiful time of year when people want to be outside at the park or at football games, cookouts and so-forth. But it is the day that we donate to our military veterans where we honor them with songs and performances. And parades and ceremonies and where we honor the great Americans who fought for our freedom. Whether they are still with us or have already given their lives to fight for our freedom or time has simply come for them to rest in peace.

And this is why since 1918 after World War I that we take a day out of our year to give to the veterans who have given their lives to serve our country by defending it and is something that not many Americans do considering how large our country is. Which is why it is even more important that the three-hundred plus Americans who haven't served in our military I believe even have a bigger debt to the veterans who have served us.

So instead of looking at Veterans Day as another day in the year where we do not have to work as Americans. Look at it as a day where we honor the men and women, fathers and mothers. Grandfathers and grandmothers, uncles and aunts, brothers and sisters who have served our country. By defending our freedom and look to pay back some of that huge debt to them. By thanking them for their service and remember that we only have this day off because of them.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Alfred Hitchcock: Vertigo (1958) Starring Jimmy Stewart & Kim Novak

Source:Movie Clips- the official trailer for Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo, (1958) according to Movie Clips. 

Source:The New Democrat

A San Francisco detective (James Stewart) suffering from acrophobia investigates the strange activities of an old friend's wife, all the while becoming dangerously obsessed with her.

Dismissed when first released, later heralded as one of director Alfred Hitchcock's finest films (and, according to Hitchcock, his most personal one), this adaptation of the French novel D'entre les morts weaves an intricate web of obsession and deceit. It opens as Scottie Ferguson (James Stewart) realizes he has vertigo, a condition resulting in a fear of heights, when a police officer is killed trying to rescue him from falling off a building. Scottie then retires from his position as a private investigator, only to be lured into another case by his old college friend, Gavin Elster (Tom Helmore). Elster's wife, Madeleine (Kim Novak), has been possessed by a spirit, and Elster wants Scottie to follow her. He hesitantly agrees, and thus begins the film's wordless montage as Scottie follows the beautiful yet enigmatic Madeleine through 1950s San Francisco (accompanied by Bernard Herrmann's hypnotic score). After saving her from suicide, Scottie begins to fall in love with her, and she appears to feel the same way. Here tragedy strikes, and each twist in the movie's second half changes our preconceptions about the characters and events. In 1996 a new print of Vertigo was released, restoring the original grandeur of the colors and the San Francisco backdrop, as well as digitally enhancing the soundtrack."

I wouldn't say that Vertigo is a great movie, especially not a great Alfred Hitchcock film. There are at least three others and probably more Hitchcock movies that are better. North by Northwest my favorite, Rear Window and To Catch a Thief, and I'm sure others are definitely better than Vertigo. Vertigo is not Kim Novak's best movie either. But Kim Novak and Jimmy Stewart made Vertigo a very good and entertaining movie almost by themselves by how they worked together and the chemistry they had.

Vertigo does have a very good plot. Jimmy Stewart plays a former San Francisco police detective who is now in semi-retirement. His old buddy from I believe college gets a hold of him with a job for him, but now as a private detective. His old friend who hasn't seen a long time is a very wealthy San Francisco businessman who has a gorgeous, baby-face, goddess, of a wife Madeline (played Kim Novak). He wants Scottie (played by Jimmy Stewart) to believe that his wife is going crazy and wants her to tail her to see what she does during the day.

What Scottie isn't aware of is that this couple is using him and is in on a murder plot. They want Scottie to think that Madeline (played by Kim Novak)  is dead. When the fact is she is alive and well and comes back in the movie playing another character that just happens to meet Scottie. And Scottie is blown away by her because of the incredible resemblance and falls in lover with the same woman again. A very interesting and good movie, but certainly not the best Hitchcock movie. 

Thursday, November 6, 2014

The New Republic: Noam Scheiber: 'What My Book Got Wrong About Obama, Summers, Geithner, Recovery'

Source:The New Democrat

It is rare at least in the last four years or so that I agree with Noam Scheiber on anything. And four years is most of the time that I've been blogging. You see more bipartisan cooperation and bills passed in Congress than you see agree with Noam on anything. He is more of a "government can solve every problem on their own, or at least solve every problem, if the people just get out-of-the-way and give government the money to solve their problems for them" Social Democrat. And I'm a New Democrat and believe in limited government and that there's a limit to what government can do especially by itself.

But Noam is right on when he says that the 2009 stimulus or Economic Recovery and Investment Act was too small. It should've been around two-trillion dollars and not paid for. Treated as seriously as the Great Depression and invested all of that money in ending the recession by encouraging people to spend money with individual and business and tax relief. Job creating with a lot of infrastructure and fighting off further unemployment in the public sector with aid to state and local government's so they wouldn't have to lay off so many employees.

The ERIA or stimulus had some of that, but not nearly enough because it was about eighty-percent short of what it should've been. We were dropping seven-hundred thousand jobs of month in late 2008 and into 2009 when Barack Obama became President. And the economy was dropping seven-percent as well, so what they needed to address that immediately with a huge economic package even through borrowing to put the money back in the economy so the Great Recession wasn't as bad and as long as it was. As far as how long it would take the country to get through it.

I agree with Noam to a certain extent about the Obama Administration pivoting too fast to debt and deficit reduction. But that is because the stimulus was too small and that since it wasn't big enough, they should've at least attempted and put stimulus two on the table in early 2011. Telling the new Republican House "that I know you don't think we should do this again with the debt and deficit being where it is, but this is what we need to do because of where the economy is overall. And as President I'm going to do the best that I can to see that it happens and see what we can do in the Democratic Senate".

I disagree with Noam on the healthcare law. If it wasn't passed when it was in early 2010, we are still doing with the problems of not passing that law today. People losing their health insurance because they need it, or have a pre-existing condition, or reached some lifetime cap. A lot more low-income workers without any health insurance because the Medicaid expansion is not there. And millions of Americans who simply can't afford health insurance because their employer doesn't provide it, or it is too expensive and they aren't poor enough for Medicaid. With no health care plan on the table and ready to pass it to deal with these issues.

To somewhat defend President Obama here. A brand new fairly inexperienced President who has never run an administration before, whose whole career up to that point was in the private sector and as a legislature in Illinois and not quite four years as a U.S. Senator, coming into power with a boatload of issues he has to deal with immediately, that is the situation that he came into with his background. I could see why he felt the need to do something fast and make it clear to the country that he is on the job. But someone with more experience and perhaps a better team around him would've said. "You know what, let's do this right before we do it fast". And would've gone bigger early on to address the economy even it took Congress longer to pass a recovery bill. 

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Real Time With Bill Maher: 'Atheism Is Not a Religion'

Source:Real Time With Bill Maher- on Atheism and religion.

Source:The Daily Press

"Bill Maher on HBO's "Real Time" goes on a rant about how atheism and theism are incompatible ideologically. He "un-baptizes" Mitt Romney's deceased father-in-law, who was himself an atheist. Funny as hell!" 

From Pariah 2001

This photo is from the same monologue/editorial Bill Maher did on the same program about Atheism and religion.

Source:Real Time With Bill Maher- on Atheism and religion.
Religion: "the belief in and worship of a superhuman power or powers, especially a God or gods.
"ideas about the relationship between science and religion" 

Atheism: "disbelief or lack of belief in the existence of God or gods' 

You can see these definitions for yourself at 

Of course I agree that Atheism is not a religion. But I also believe hat if jump into a lake, I would get wet. Unless someone who was dying of first, managed to drink every last drop of water, before landed in the lake. But I don't think that's the point here. 

I think the point here is that Atheists, especially hard-core Atheists who put down everyone who is religious the same way that fundamentalist believers put down everyone who disagrees with them on anything, including other believers, sound like fundamentalists as well. 

If you think about it, Atheists and fundamentalists have one big thing in common and this includes Bill Maher: they don't disagree with the Golden Rule, they hate the Golden Rule to the point that they think it should be outlawed. 

If you are going to live in a free society, it helps to not put down people as immoral, crazy, and stupid, simply because of religion, or any other issues where the individuals have a constitutional right to decide for themselves whether to be part of whatever the activity is. 

America has lasted almost 240 years with fundamentalists, Atheists, and Agnostics, even with the fact that we've always had fundamentalists on the Far-Right, who not only love their religious beliefs, but think they should be the law of the land and hate the concept of the Separation of Church and State. And not just Atheists, but Communists on the Far-Left, who would probably try to outlaw organized religion, if they ever came to power. 

One of the beauties of free speech and personal freedom, it allows for everyone to be themself and live and learn. Let's keep it that way. 

Monday, November 3, 2014

Bill Maher: 'Be More Cynical on Religion'

Source:Free Thinking- Real Time With Bill Maher. No, really. This is not his TV show.
Source:The Daily Press

Being cynical is probably a conservative boring way to live your life. Where you'll end up taking less risks and your not putting your heart on the line very often. Not trying to sound gushy, but being cynical has its advantages as well. You'll probably get burned and disappointed less, because you're taking less chances. You're not automatically going to take someone's word when they say something. 

For example when a member of Congress refers to someone from the other party as their friend, which happens all the time in the Senate, you're not automatically going to assume Sen. Smith is friends with Sen. Jones or John McCain is friends with George W. Bush. Just because they say that, you'll understand that they may just be saying that. 

That's how Washington works and when a member of Congress is referred to as a distinguished gentlemen or distinguished gentlelady, you know that they not be distinguished at all. Perhaps except for being a leader in Congress when it comes to fundraising, or bridges to nowhere, or "bringing home the bacon", that no one eats. Because no one lives or drives there, etc. 

If you trust someone who has a good track record with you, they have sound judgement, etc and they invite out to treat you for dinner or will pick up the check, you know to take their word they'll do those things. But when you offer them something to eat and give it to them, something they never had before and they taste it and have a horrible look on their face and they say its not good, chances are they are just being nice and don't take that seriously. Truth and flattery are different.

The only advice I would give here, is take things in life for what they are. And don't automatically assume everything you hear is the truth. Especially from people who need you for something. I would start with politicians, but anyone who needs something from you, when they do and say things that make sense and you know why they did it and understand it, great. 

But if they do or say something strange that's out of character and is something that's not a good thing, for example let's say you love playing tennis. And someone you know needs something from you. And they don't have a clue about tennis and don't even like the game and they start talking to about tennis, trying to express an interest in it, even challenging you to a match, don't automatically assume they've become tennis fans. 

They just might want you to believe that they are tennis fans instead, as a way to communicate to you. When they give you an explanation for it, unless it makes sense and adds up, don't automatically assume they are saying what happened or the whole truth. Because they might only be saying what they want you to hear.

I know I'm a political junky and I have this pattern of using political stories to communicate broader points. But this is my last political story here. Politicians are the perfect people to be cynical about. If a white collar politician comes to your state, hell let's say running for President, why not and I'm not going to use a name here, a wealthy white collar wine and cheese yuppy politician, let's say. 

This person comes to your State and let's say your state has a lot of blue collar workers there, lets say Pennsylvania or Ohio. And this politician stops by one of your local taverns or bowling allies in Pittsburgh, to speak to your people. And this person comes to show you his bowling skills, trying to convince you he has some. 

Or the white collar limo owning and riding politician  drinks beer to show you he likes beer, but generally doesn't do these things, don't automatically assume this politician is like you. But instead wants you to believe he is, to get you to vote for him. He wants your vote not to be friends. 

The more you take things as they are and not just what you want them to be, the better you'll be off if life. And I know that sounds unromantic and perhaps unreligious, but what do you expect from an Agnostic anyway. Because you'll always know or at least most of them depending on how intelligent you are, who is with you and who wants you to believe they are with you in order to get something out of you.
Source:Free Thinking

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