Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Goodbye Veronica Mars

I really can't say anything more insightful than this paragraph from Jace at Televisionary:
"The ending, in which Veronica sees that Keith is being charged with tampering with evidence and then goes and votes for her dad in the voting booth (even though he's doomed to fail), was a beautiful crystallization about everything Veronica Mars has stood for: hope in the face of adversity, despite all proof that truth and justice don't necessarily exist in a noir-styled town as corrupt as Neptune. No matter how much good Keith and Veronica do in their roles as private investigators (or in Keith's case as sheriff), they'll never truly fit in in Neptune society; they're rebels, outcasts, forever removed from the '09-ers and tainted by the fact that they don't live in that posh zip code. If that's not the perfect ending to a series about class warfare, I don't know what is; it was poignant and full of promise for a fourth season at the same time. Pity then that we won't get to see (whether that's Veronica as an FBI agent or a college student) what would have come next."

Tomorrow, the World!

I watch a lot of Turner Classic Movies. I Tivo pretty much anything that falls into the following categories: classics I haven't seen; movies starring any of the cast members of The Best Years of Our Lives; movies with Joseph Cotten; movies about divorce or war marriage post-1940; screwball comedies; adaptations of my favorite childhood books; etc. Weird things catch my eye. Today was no exception.

Today I watched the oddest movie ever--1944's Tomorrow, the World! which falls into the movies starring any of the cast members of The Best Years of Our Lives. Frederic March stars as a scientist engaged to a "Jewess" who takes in his orphaned nephew. The nephew Emil, played by Skippy Homeier with the worst German accent in creation, is a former member of the Hitler Youth. I can't say this movie was entertaining in the movie sense, but it was entertaining in the sense that it pulled off WWII philosophy to a T. 1) Skippy demonstrated how fucked up he was by first showing his bad gender politics. Frederic March has a daughter Pat who calls her father by his first name, loves her cousin before she sees him, and is the only person able to handle Skippy. From the get-go, Skippy is repulsed by Pat's independence and tries to put her in her place. He later challenges a Polish kid who is doing laundry for his mom who works in a war plant. Damn those Nazis! At any rate, it's interesting to see that the current vein of villifying your enemies through their gender politics is hardly new. 2) Americans All: Skippy was more obviously a problem because he couldn't accept Frederic March's Jewish fiancee. His crimes against her included writing grafitti calling her a Jewish tramp on school grounds and plotting with Frederic March's overprotective semi-incestuous sister to break up the engagement, which succeeds. 3) Skippy is immediately drawn to the Asian kid in his class, only later realizing he's Chinese rather than Japanese. 4) Pop psychology on a global scale abounds! Skippy eventually attacks Pat with a fire poker when she catches him trying to steal scientific information. So Frederic March who had been all about reforming Skippy as a means of practice at reforming the entire country of Germany, gives up. That is until a bandaged Pat forgives him, and the Jewess helps Skippy break down realizing that the Nazis had tortured him as a young child. Now all is well! I took this image from an article by Jennifer Fay called "Germany Is a Boy in Trouble." I have not read it but it looks good . . .


Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Goodbye Gilmore Girls

I'll miss this series, but it went out perfectly. A few great episodes leading up to the end after a really really rough season. And an episode full of characters I love with appropriately weepy moments and appropriately mundane funny bits. I'll always wonder what Amy Sherman-Palladino envisioned for the last scene of the series, but I can't imagine it would be that different from what we got. I have to admit I cried the entire episode and felt 22 again and missed my parents and all the rest of that. My only objection is that there was no Paris, but thinking back we got a nice Paris send-off last week and really Paris couldn't have handled all of that weepiness anyway. Next year Tuesday nights just won't be the same for lots of people out there and that's a tribute in itself.

*picture c/o The House Next Door.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Summer movie lineup

A movie in Grant Park is perhaps my favorite thing to do in Chicago. The lineup this year looks awesome, partly because it's a little more femme-ed out than usual. Sound of Music AND Sirk? Awesome. That said, I think I'm looking forward to Double Indemnity most of all. Here it is:

Jul. 17: 8:56 p.m. "Young Frankenstein" (1974)
Jul. 24: 8:50 p.m. "Double Indemnity" (1944)
Jul. 31: 8:42 p.m. "Written on the Wind" (1956)
Aug. 7: 8:34 p.m. "The Awful Truth" (1937)
Aug. 14: 8:24 p.m. "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" (1969)
Aug. 21: 8:13 p.m. "Sweet Smell of Success" (1957)
Aug. 28: 8:01 p.m. "The Sound of Music" (1965)

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