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Like Tucker ever had a chance with any of the M&M’s. Dude would have to pay for it from Necco Wafers.
— Shine Bright (@BeachPineapple1) January 22, 2022
Swear to Murphy the Trickster God, if I didn’t know he was a paid chaos agent (for Murdoch, the GOP, Putin — are those still separate entities?), I’d think that Tucker Carlson was sliding into my personal ‘Don’t post about genuinely crazy people’ zone. But he’s clearly tapped a rich vein of GOP self-parody!
I’d have thought I could say that I like candy as much as the next fella but apparently not if the next fella is Tucker.
— Jonathan Selbin (@JonathanSelbin) January 22, 2022
ext: Your Republican neighbor's lawn, July 2022
W E B E L I E V E
Green M&M wears FM Pumps
MISTER PotatoHead has a Dick & Balls
Lola Bunny Loves Her Big Naturals
Ray Stantz Got a Ghost Hummer
RULE 34 IS LIFEhttps://t.co/UwEBt2bmrR
— zeddy (@Zeddary) January 22, 2022
Rule 34: If it exists, there is porn of it. (Google at your own risk!)
The post Late Saturday Night Open Thread: Kink-Shaming the Professional Death Cultists appeared first on Balloon Juice.
I have no idea why he is in this position.
Got my covid test today, and I will know the results in 2-5 days. I don’t think I have it, but I am just exhausted and coughing up shit and feel crappy. And if I did have it, there’s not much I would do different since my oxygen levels are at like 98% and I never go anywhere anyway.
It just sucks that I started to feel like shit on Wednesday, the DAY after I went to Kroger, so now I have to worry I caught it. Ehh, whatever.
In other news, as I was getting ready to shower, I slipped on a pee pad (Lily has been having accidents- it’s hard for her to go up and down the stairs as easily) and she uses the pee pads, so it’s not like it is an issue. Fortunately it was a clean pee pad, but in order to not fall down the stairs or fall in such a way that I would injure my shoulder, I landed SQUARE on my left knee with all my weight. I just crumpled and sat there for a couple minutes and though about life choices and evaluated whether or not I had broken anything or if moving would make it worse, decided I was ok, and got up and showered and iced it before heading out for my test.
It’s swollen a bit and tender, but I can still hobble around and nothing is broken, and honestly it’s probably safer this way because I have to pay attention to what the fuck I am doing when I walk. Thinking positively, I dodged a bullet and will not have “Slipped on a pee pad” as the cause of death in my autopsy.
So there’s that.
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A statue of Theodore Roosevelt was removed overnight from its spot outside the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. The statue depicts Roosevelt riding a horse, as two nameless African and Native American men flank him on foot. https://t.co/KqLwUHcY6n
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) January 20, 2022
The usual suspects, of course, are outraged. Especially the ones who only knew about the American Museum of Natural History — and, possibly, Teddy Roosevelt — because of those terrible ‘Night at the Museum’ movies. But the AMNH was one of the lodestones of my childhood, and I can assure you: That statue was considered an embarrassment even fifty years ago. It will *not* be missed in NYC. And it’s found a much more culturally appropriate home elsewhere:
… The towering bronze statue depicts Roosevelt riding a horse, as two nameless African and Native American men flank him on foot.
It has provoked strong debate in the city, as many criticized the apparent subservience of the pair to the White man in the center — calling the scene a symbol of racism and colonialism.
“The statue was meant to celebrate Theodore Roosevelt … as a devoted naturalist and author of works on natural history,” the museum website has said about the removal. “At the same time, the statue itself communicates a racial hierarchy that the Museum and members of the public have long found disturbing.”…
The Roosevelt statue will be on long-term loan to the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library due to open in 2026, in North Dakota, where Roosevelt spent time in the Badlands. The presidential library was termed “a fitting new home” by New York City officials when the decision was made last year, noting it could be “appropriately contextualized” there.
Library trustees agreed the statue was “problematic in its composition” and said in a statement they would be establishing an advisory council comprising representatives from Indigenous and Black communities, historians, scholars, and artists to determine next steps…
For the moment, white supremacist ‘history enthusiasts’ can combine a trip to check up on ol’ Teedy with their pilgrimage to Kristi Noem’s Mount Rushmore. And once the country has recovered from the current political extinction burst, the TR Library can quietly relocate the statue, possibly as a marker to the restrooms.
The post Saturday Night Open Thread: Another Excellent Relocation appeared first on Balloon Juice.
I thought I might dust off my VHS collection (yes, I’ve hung on to a few), put on a skinny tie and curate an 80s sleeper festival for you this evening. Several of my selections remain criminally unavailable on DVD or Blu-ray (are you listening, boutique reissue studios?). Anyway, here are 10 gems from that decade that I think deserve a little more love…
Dreamchild – This unique 1985 film from director Gavin Millar blends speculative biography with fantasy to delve into the psychology behind writer Lewis Carroll’s classic children’s book Alice in Wonderland. Scripted by Dennis Potter, the story is set in 1932 New York City.
Carroll’s muse, the now 80-year-old Alice Liddell Hargreaves (Coral Brown) has traveled from her native England with her young assistant (Nicola Cowper) to participate in a celebration of Reverend Charles L. Dodgson’s (aka Lewis Carroll’s) centenary. Prim and proper Mrs. Hargreaves is perplexed by the fuss the Americans are making over her visit. As she gathers her thoughts for a speech she is to give in Dodgson’s honor, she takes stock of her childhood association with the Reverend (Ian Holm), which leads to a bittersweet epiphany.
Anyone familiar with Dennis Potter’s work will not be surprised to learn that there are some dark subtexts; yet there is also sweetness and poignancy. Amelia Shankley gives a nuanced performance that belies her age as young Alice, and the late Jim Henson works his magic with the creature creations for the fantasy sequences.
Heartbreakers (VHS only)– In this 1984 drama, writer-director Bobby Roth delivers an absorbing character study about a pair of 30-something pals going through transitions in their personal and professional lives. Peter Coyote is excellent as petulant man-child Blue, a starving artist who specializes in fetishistic female portraiture (his character is based in part on artist Robert Blue).
Blue is nurturing a broken heart; his long-time girlfriend (Kathryn Harrold), tired of waiting for him to grow up, has dumped him. Blue’s friend Eli (Nick Mancuso) is a quintessential Yuppie who lives in a dream bachelor pad boasting a lofty view of the L.A. Basin. Despite being financially secure, Eli is also emotionally unfulfilled. With his male model looks and shiny toys, he has no problem with hookups; he just can’t find The One (yes, I know…how many nights of empty sex with an endless parade of beautiful women can one guy stand?).
Just when the commiserating duo’s love lives are looking hopeless, they both meet The One. Unfortunately, she is the same One (Carole Laure). The plot thickens, and the friendship is about to be tested. Formulaic as it sounds, Roth’s film is a keenly observed look at modern love (and sex) in the Big City. Max Gail (best known for his role on the sitcom Barney Miller) is great here, as is Carol Wayne (sadly, this is her last film).
Light of Day (VHS only)– From off the streets of Cleveland comes…that rare Paul Schrader film that doesn’t culminate in a blood-spattered catharsis. Rather, this 1987-character study (scripted by the director) concerns a pair of blue-collar siblings (Michael J. Fox and Joan Jett) struggling to make a name for themselves in the music biz.
Jett, naturally, does her own singing and playing; but Fox and the other actors portraying “The Barbusters” do so as well. That fact, coupled with the no-nonsense performances, adds up to one of the most realistic narrative films I’ve seen about what it’s really like to eke out a living in the rock ’n’ roll trenches; i.e., these guys actually look and sound like a bar band. Gena Rowlands is a standout as Jett and Fox’s mother (she is the most “Schrader-esque” character). Bruce Springsteen penned the title song (“Born in the USA” was originally slated, but nixed).
Liquid Sky – Downtown 81 meets Invasion of the Body Snatchers in this deeply weird 1982 art-house sci-fi film. A diminutive, parasitic alien with a particular delectation for NYC club kids, models and performance artists lands on an East Village rooftop and starts mainlining off the limbic systems of junkies and sex addicts…right at the moment that they, you know…reach the maximum peak of pleasure center stimulation (the alien is a dopamine junkie?). Just don’t think about the science too hard.
The main attraction here is the inventive photography and the fascinatingly bizarre performance (or non-performance) by (co-screen writer) Anne Carlisle, who tackles two roles-a female fashion model who becomes the alien’s primary host, and a male model. Writer-director Slava Zsukerman also co-wrote the electronic music score.
One Night Stand (VHS only) – An early effort from filmmaker John Duigan (Winter of Our Dreams, The Year My Voice Broke, Flirting, Sirens), this 1984 sleeper got lost in the flurry of nuclear paranoia movies that proliferated during the Reagan era.
Four young people (three Australians and an American sailor who has jumped ship) get holed up in an empty Sydney Opera House on the eve of escalating nuclear tension between the superpowers in Eastern Europe. In an effort to quell their anxiety over increasingly ominous news bulletins droning from a portable radio, the quartet find creative ways to keep up their spirits.
Uneven, but for the most part Duigan (who scripted) deftly juggles romantic comedy, apocalyptic thriller and anti-war statement. There are several striking set pieces; particularly an affecting scene where the group watches Fritz Langs’s Metropolis as the Easybeats “Friday on My Mind” is juxtaposed over its orchestral score. Midnight Oil performs in a scene where the two young women attend a concert. The bittersweet denouement (in an underground tube station) is quite powerful.
Sammie and Rosie Get Laid (VHS only)– What I adore most about this 1987 dramedy from director Stephen Frears (My Beautiful Launderette, Prick up Your Ears, Dangerous Liaisons, The Grifters, High Fidelity) is that it is everything wingnuts dread: Pro-feminist, gay-positive, anti-fascist, pro-multiculturalism, anti-colonialist and Marxist-friendly (they don’t make ‘em like this anymore).
At first glance, Sammy (Ayub Khan-Din) and Rosie (Frances Barber) are just your average middle-class London couple. However, their lifestyle is unconventional. They have taken a libertine approach to their marriage; giving each other an unlimited pass to take lovers on the side (the in-joke here is that Sammy and Rosie seemingly “get laid” with everyone but each other).
In the meantime, the couple’s neighborhood is turning into a war zone; ethnic and political unrest has led to nightly riots (this is unmistakably Thatcher’s England; Frears bookends his film with ironic excerpts from her speeches). When Sammy’s estranged father (Shashi Kapoor), a former Indian government official haunted by ghosts from his political past, returns to London after a long absence, everything goes topsy-turvy for the couple.
Fine performances abound in a cast that includes Claire Bloom and Fine Young Cannibals lead singer Roland Gift, buoyed by Frears’ direction and Hanif Kureishi’s literate script.
Stormy Monday – Sean Bean stars as a restless young drifter who blows into Newcastle and falls in with a local jazz club owner (Sting). About the same time, a shady American businessman with mob ties (Tommy Lee Jones) arrives to muscle in on a land development deal, accompanied by his ex-mistress/current P.A. (Melanie Griffith). As romantic sparks fly between Bean and Griffith, the mobster puts the thumbscrews to the club owner, who stands in the way of the development scheme by refusing to sell. Things get complicated. Writer-director Mike Figgis’ tightly scripted 1988 neo-noir (his feature debut) delivers the goods on every front. Gorgeously photographed by Roger Deakins.
Tokyo Pop (VHS only)– This 1988 film is a likable entry in the vein of other 80s films like Starstruck, Breaking Glass, Desperately Seeking Susan, Smithereens and The Fabulous Stains. The fluffy premise is buoyed by star Carrie Hamilton’s winning screen presence.
Hamilton (who does her own singing) plays a struggling wannabe rock star who buys a one-way ticket to Tokyo at the invitation of a girlfriend. Unfortunately, her flaky friend has flown the coop, and our heroine is stranded in a strange land. “Fish out of water” misadventures ensue, including cross-cultural romance with all the usual complications.
For music fans, it’s a fun time capsule of the late 80s Japanese music scene, and the colorful cinematography nicely captures the neon-lit energy of Tokyo nightlife. Director Fran Rubel Kuzui (who co-wrote the screenplay with Lynn Grossman) later directed the 1992 feature film Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and went on to serve as executive producer for the eponymous TV series. Sadly, Hamilton (Carol Burnett’s daughter) died of cancer at age 38 in 2002.
Wish You Were Here – David Leland’s 1987 comedy-drama centers on a headstrong 16-year-old girl coming of age in post WW 2 England. The story is loosely based on the real-life exploits of British madam Cynthia Payne (Leland also collaborated as screenwriter with director Terry Jones on the film Personal Services, which starred Julie Walters and was based on Payne’s later exploits).
Vivacious teenager Emily Lloyd makes an astounding debut as pretty, potty-mouthed “Linda”, whose exhibitionist tendencies and sexual antics cause her reserved widower father and younger sister to walk around in a perpetual state of public embarrassment.
Bolstered by a taut script and precise performances, the film breezes along on a deft blend of belly-laugh hilarity and bittersweet emotion. Excellent supporting cast, especially Thom Bell, who injects humanity into an otherwise vile character. Sadly, the talented Lloyd never broke big; she went on to do a few relatively unremarkable projects, and then dropped off the radar.
Word, Sound, and Power – This 1980 documentary by Jeremiah Stein clocks in at just over an hour but is the best film I’ve seen about roots reggae music and Rastafarian culture. Barely screened upon its original theatrical run and long coveted by music geeks as a Holy Grail until its belated DVD release in 2008 (when I was finally able to loosen my death grip on the sacred, fuzzy VHS copy that I had taped off of USA’s Night Flight back in the early 80s), it’s a wonderful time capsule of a particularly fertile period for the Kingston music scene.
Stein interviews key members of The Soul Syndicate Band, a group of studio players who were the Jamaican version of The Wrecking Crew; they backed reggae superstars like Jimmy Cliff, Bob Marley, Burning Spear, and Toots Hibbert (to name but a few). Beautifully photographed and edited, with outstanding live performances by the Syndicate. Musical highlights include “Mariwana”, “None Shall Escape the Judgment”, and a spirited acoustic version of “Harvest Uptown”.
Previous posts with related themes:
More reviews at Den of Cinema
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It’s not because of their ideology it’s because there are only so many Trump loving nutballs to go around and they are all watching Fox. How do these wingnuts like capitalism now?
Before One America News Network host Dan Ball finished an interview with guest Jim Jordan this past week, he asked the Ohio Republican congressman for a favor.
“Please put some pressure on AT&T and DirecTV for us,” said Ball, whose nightly program “Real America” airs nightly on the right-wing cable channel. “OAN would love to continue broadcasting on that platform and we know for a fact it is all political behind the scenes on why they’re doing that to us.”
Earlier in the week, Ball solicited viewers to send him “dirt” on William Kannard, chairman of of the board for DirecTV parent AT&T, including any evidence of marital infidelity. OAN’s 80-year-old founder, tech entrepreneur Robert Herring, also went on camera to plea with viewers to ask other cable and satellite providers in their areas to add the channel to their lineups.
The desperate calls for help — which would be considered unseemly on a traditional cable news outlet — follow DirecTV’s Jan. 15 announcement that it will drop the San Diego-based OAN from its service in April. DirecTV, which AT&T spun off last summer, accounts for nearly half of the 35 million homes that can receive OAN on cable or satellite TV. The channel is not broadly distributed enough to be measured by Nielsen.
The loss of DirecTV will deprive the channel of its major source of revenue and cast doubt on the future of the operation, where President Biden’s administration is called a “regime” and concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic are described as hysteria. OAN correspondents have promoted efforts to audit the vote counts in the 2020 election.
OAN is not be the only conservative outlet losing distribution. Newsmax, the Boca Raton, Fla.-based channel that is the TV home of former President Trump’s first press secretary, Sean Spicer, was dropped from four cable systems in January after it failed to reach new carriage agreements with those companies.
The two channels gained notoriety in recent years by seeking out conservative viewers who believe right-leaning Fox News, the dominant ratings leader in cable news, did not show enough unwavering fealty to Trump. Both believe it’s now open season on conservative outlets.
“We count 11 liberal news and information channels in a typical cable package, with Fox News Channel and Newsmax as the only alternatives,” Newsmax Chief Executive Chris Ruddy said in a statement to The Times. “All Americans are harmed when any voice, liberal or conservative, is closed down. We believe that society as a whole benefits from more discussion and political views being represented, not less.”[…]
OAN, Newsmax and Fox News, are all being sued for defamation by voting technology companies Smartmatic and Dominion. Both firms allege their reputations were damaged by false statements presented by anchors and guests who echoed Trump’s claims that the 2020 election was rigged against him.
The lawsuits could create significant liabilities and a heap of bad publicity for the networks, complicating their relationship with distributors. The networks have said they were within their 1st Amendment rights to report on election fraud allegations made by well-known public figures, including Trump his advisors and members of Congress. (Fox News has a motion to dismiss the Smartmatic suit.)
The pay TV providers who dropped OAN and Newsmax make the case that it’s not politics that drove their decisions, but the upended economics of their business.
Cable and satellite companies are coping with subscriber loss as the emergence of streaming services, such as Netflix, disrupts TV habits. The number of pay TV homes declined by nearly 9% through the first nine months of 2021, according to research firm MoffettNathanson. DirecTV has seen significant subscriber losses as well.
The cost of a cable package is a major factor in the consumers’ decision to cut the cord, which means service providers are under pressure not to raise rates. Cable bills creep up when the cost to carry programming is passed along to consumers.
DirecTV did not comment on OAN beyond its initial statement saying the decision to drop it came “after a routine internal review.” The company’s chief executive Bill Morrow did offer an explanation in a memo to employees obtained by The Times.
Morrow said carriage decisions on channels are based on “industry trends such as secular decline, programming price increases, competitive offerings with lower price points, our competitors’ offers, and consumers’ desire to have more narrow bundles.”
Breezeline, the Quincy, Mass.-based cable company formerly known as Atlantic Broadband, took a similar stance in its comment on its decision to part with Newsmax.
“While we worked in good faith to negotiate a fair agreement, Newsmax insisted on terms and conditions that we could not accept,” said Andrew Walton, a spokesperson for Breezeline. “The decision was not related in any way to the content on the network.”
Hey, if you can’t deliver an audience …
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