Sunday Cable Round-Up
I had a tech problem last night. For some reason I couldn't extract
the audio files from the HD version of the cable shows, even though I had no
problem with the exact same shows in standard definition. I hope Deep at Sea
will have better luck, so we'll wait for his HD vids. I did include my True
Blood video below, because the audio is more or less unnecessary crap, as you can guess from
the cheesy video.
True Blood. The only nudity came from
two anonymous women in some kind of alternate dream universe to which Sookie
apparently belongs. (It's a brand new dimension in the show and the details have
not been revealed.) Here's the
Entourage. There was no nudity, but
Perrey Reeves did one very hot lingerie scene. In place of a film clip, here are
some HD captures.
Hung. Anne Heche did full frontal and
rear nudity - maybe. The scene is very, very far from the camera, so anything is
possible, from body stockings to body doubles. Here are some captures.
Catch the deluxe
version of Other Crap in real time, with all the bells and whistles,
Joely Richardson film clips.
Suzanna Hamilton film
clips. Samples below.
Scoop's notes on the
Wetherby is the name of a nondescript and middle class English town which
provides the backdrop for a mysterious whydunit. (It's a suicide, so we already
Vanessa Redgrave plays an unfulfilled middle aged schoolmarm who hosts a small
dinner party one evening. As the guests arrive, a stranger appears at the door,
says he is John Morgan, and walks in to the dinner. They set an extra place for
him. Nobody really knows whether someone else extended a kind invitation to this
lost soul, but it turns out that he has simply invited himself.
John Morgan returns to the teacher's house the next morning, makes a little
small talk, pulls a gun from his pocket, sticks it in his mouth, and calmly
And there is our whydunit premise. Why was John Morgan at that party? Why did he
commit suicide? Why did he choose the teacher's home to make his farewell
statement? The last question is especially intriguing to the police, because a
suicide among strangers is totally uncharacteristic. Typically a suicide happens
alone, or as a dramatic statement made in front of someone for a purpose, but
not among random people. The police inspector tries to assemble the pieces of
the puzzle, with only limited success, but we in the audience get a significant
amount of additional insight when we see incidents from John Morgan's past, from
the teacher's past, and from additional moments during the evening of the dinner
The solution to the puzzle is never really explicit, but the script maintains an
appropriate feeling of ubiquitous portent throughout the story by the unspoken
parts of the secret. The story thus stands apart from the type of mystery which
functions logically and deductively. It is inductive, and oblique. It offers not
solutions, but hints, suggestions, or working hypotheses. This technique is
quite an intelligent way to present the unraveling, as if Harold Pinter had
decided to take his elegant dialogue and sense of foreboding away from
psychological dramas about the rich and write instead a mystery story about the
educated middle class. On the other hand, not everyone watches movies to see
displays of intelligence, suggestion, and subtlety. If you want to see a true
mystery story, you will really not care for this much at all. You will probably
sit quietly during the closing credits and think, "Am I supposed to understand
why it happened? I'm not sure that I do, even after all that exposition."
The dialogue is smart and it is delivered by a first-rate and classically
trained cast, headed by Ian Holm, Judi Dench and Tom Wilkinson, as well as the
aforementioned Vanessa Redgrave and Vanessa's look-alike daughter, Joely, who
plays her mother's character in flashback scenes. The story had its origin on
the London stage, not in a play written by Harold Pinter but one from David
Hare, who adapted his own play into this screenplay and also directed the film,
constructing it carefully to maintain a certain portentous tone. If you enjoy
Pinter's plays, or other works which rely on the careful maintenance of tone to
evoke a calculated emotional response from the audience, you'll find this to be
a good example of the type. Roger Ebert felt it was worth four stars.
I myself don't especially enjoy watching Pinteresque plays. I don't know how
much of Pinter's (or Hare's) dialogue is meant to represent realistic
characterization and how much is stagy artifice, but I've always thought this
sort of dialogue to be merely a component of the contrivance necessary to evoke
a certain audience response. It always sounds like speechifying to me. Of
course, I may be wrong about whether these characters are realistic. The fact
that I don't know any people who talk or think like these people doesn't obviate
the possibility that these portrayals do fairly represent a certain side of
British life of which I am unaware. If that is so, I'm glad I don't have to
spend any time there. I didn't even want to spend the very little time
encompassed by this movie. I found Wetherby very tough going - tedious,
talky, and utterly devoid of warmth. Its putative subtlety could also be
described as a lack of clarity and catharsis. Roger Ebert may be correct in his
assessment that this is a superior film, but frankly the vast majority of you
would top off a viewing by questioning how anyone could possibly like this. My
own reaction to the film involved a great deal of admiration, but not one
scintilla of enjoyment.
A mixture of things.
There is one original scan, that of Victoria Principal on the back cover of her
book, The Body Principal.
Vidcaps include the familiar and the obscure. Darlanne Fluegel, the first one
presented below, probably fits in the latter but ever since I saw her in Running
Scared, playing Billy Crystal's wife, I have been a fan. Hung around quite a
while but between 1996 and 2007 she had nothing, nada, zilch. A movie in 2008
and back she went into the vault of obscurity. Too bad. She was hot.
Darlanne Fluegel in To Live and Die in L.A.
Ingrid Steeger in Blutjunge
A.J. Alexander in American Summer
Alexandra Hay in Fun and Games
Carla Nieto in Acusados
Carrick Glenn in The Burning
Christina Ricci in Black Snake Moan
Dani Dare in the Cowboy Killer
Eva Mendes in The Spirit
Kira Miro in Broken Embraces
Lizzy Caplan in True Blood, s1e9
And then there is
plus a collage of some crazy Italian infomercial starring Veronica Ciardi
wearing not up top 'cept some paint. Never met an Italian I did not like and I
suspect that I would like Veronica very much were I ever lucky enough to meet