Happy Holiday


This is a real headline from the Orlando Ledger: "Man Arrested After Crotch of Pants Explodes"
David Letterman disrupts the Today Show
(Many years ago)

Report from the Venice Film Festival: Mexican director Alfonso Cuaron leaves Harry Potter behind him with his new film 'Children of Men,' a bleak tale of an apocalyptic world in which humans can no longer have babies.

Ryan Howard hits three more dingers, raising him to 52 for the year.
  • And he hit all three off Tim Hudson!
  • The big guy has 133 RBI in 136 games.
  • If Thome hadn't been injured last year, the Phils would probably still have the kid in the minors, where he spent 5 years. He was the FSL MVP in 2003 and the Eastern League MVP in 2004, although he played only 102 games! And he certainly would have been the IL MVP in 2005, given 16 homers in 210 at bats and a .371 batting average when the Phils finally called him up for good (the second time that year), at which point he became the NL rookie of the year in half a season!

A-Rod hits two more homers as the Yanks crush the Twins
  • I guess the slump is over, eh?
  • Do you think Yankees fans are spoiled enough? They have arguably the best player in the league, maybe the best shortstop of all time. He agrees to play out of position without a word of complaint. He continues to play at a tremendous level. The team is kicking ass and leaving the Sox in the dust. So when Alex goes into a slump, they boo him! WTF? Do they think he's trying to slump? Do they think the booing will help the situation? Craziness!

Pujols goes yard thrice.
  • Has the Cards' big fella finally found his mysteriously absent power stroke? Before his June injury, he had 25 homers in 175 at bats (a rate of 86 per season of 600 at bats), a pace that would make Bonds and Ruth envious. Since returning from the DL, he started the day with "only" 14 homers in 247 at bats (about 34 per 600). Hitting homers at the rate of 34 per season is still impressive for a normal human being, but is far, far from his previous rate.

The Jackson Five sing 123 on Ed Sullivan in 1970

Jefferson Airplane sings Crown of Creation on Ed Sullivan in September of 1968

Seven new clips from The Science of Sleep (2006), the new film from the director of Eternal Sunshine. I guess Gondry is working on a reputation as the new Terry Gilliam (which is not such a bad thing to be).

Two trailers and seven clips from Stormbreaker
  • Based on the best selling young adult adventure series of books by Anthony Horowitz, this story concerns Alex Rider (Alex Pettyfer), a 14-year-old orphan who has been unwittingly trained all his life by his uncle with the skills to become a secret agent - scuba diving, mountaineering, martial arts and so on. When his uncle (Ewan McGregor), an MI6 agent, is killed, Rider learns the truth and finds himself forced against his will to take on a dangerous mission for the British secret service. Using the tools and gadgets of the trade, in the vein of 007, Alex must infiltrate the lair of billionaire and possibly evil mastermind Darrius Sayle (Mickey Rourke) in order to stop him from releasing a biological weapon upon all of England via his brand new, high tech Stormbreaker computers.
  • The new SAT tests now include this question: Which word does not belong: "Mickey," "Rourke," "Mastermind."

The trailer from Feast
  • "Feast" is the highly anticipated horror movie whose inception and production was made possible and documented by the third season of the hit show "Project Greenlight" on the Bravo network. The film will hit theatres nationwide for special late night showings around the country on September 22 and 23, 2006. The special showings will be followed by the DVD launch of "Feast" on October 17, 2006. Directed by Project Greenlight winner and first time filmmaker John Gulager, "Feast" is the terrifying tale of a motley crew of strangers who find themselves trapped in an isolated tavern and must band together in a battle for survival against a family of flesh-hungry creatures.

The trailer for Killshot
  • A Quentin Tarantino presentation. From Academy Award nominated director John Madden ("Shakespeare in Love") comes Hossein Amini's wry adaptation of Elmore Leonard's best-selling crime novel. The beautiful Carmen Colson (Diane Lane) and her husband Wayne (Thomas Jane) become entangled in a scam with a bumbling, small time con artist (Joseph Gordon Levitt) and his over-the-hill hitman partner the Blackbird (Mickey Rourke). Ultimately, it all comes down to one wife, one husband, two killers...and one lethal killshot.

Box Office Mojo - All Time Box Office - Adjusted into 2006 Dollars
  • I don't know if anything will ever unseat Gone With the Wind's records. You see, Box Office Mojo's chart adjusts for ticket prices, but does not adjust for the population of the United States, which was about 130 million in 1939. Gone With the Wind has sold 200 million paid tickets -fifteen tickets per ten people, or about one and a half tickets for every man, woman and baby in the country when it was released! In order to produce an equivalent result, a film today would have to sell more than 450 million tickets, or a box office gross of about $3 billion.
  • The second place finisher, Star Wars, has sold an impressive 178 million tickets, but was released in a year when the US population had climbed to 220 million, thus has sold "only" about eight tickets for every ten people in the 1977 population.
  • There is another way to look at it that makes Star Wars seem to be the champion. GWTW has sold 202 million tickets, but there were 2.3 BILLION tickets sold in 1939, in the heyday of cinema, pre-television. Star Wars has sold 178 million tickets, but was released in a year when only 1.1 billion were sold. In other words, GWTW's record is not just a factor of the individual film's popularity, but of the industry in general. Its ticket sales account for 9% of 1939's sales, while Star Wars accounts for 16% of 1977's. (NOTE: Neither stat is literally a correct market share, since not all of Star Wars' tickets were sold in 1977, nor GWTW's in 1939. Nonetheless, they are useful guides to the comparative popularity of the two films.)
  • The truly amazing thing about 1939's ticket sales is that they occurred in the Great Depression. By 1946, US ticket sales had soared to 4.8 BILLION units, about 34 for every person then living in the country. In comparison, the number of tickets sold in a current year is around a third of that number, despite the fact that the population has more than doubled. Today's Americans buy about five movie tickets per capita, same as they did in 1964.
  • The massive decline in ticket sales occurred from 1946 to 1964, when television gradually lured away more and more of cinema's business and, because of the oppressive Hays Code, cinema was powerless to respond with more sensational sex and violence.

Astro Pic o' the Day: Pluto in True Color. It's brown!

(Click on photo to read the article.)



Movie Reviews:

Yellow asterisk: funny (maybe). White asterisk: expanded format. Blue asterisk: not mine. No asterisk: it probably sucks.


Bittere Ernte (1986)

Bittere Ernte, or Angry Harvest, was nominated for best foreign language Oscar, and was the hardest-hitting Holocaust film up to that point. The story takes place in Poland, and centers on a farmer, basically a good man who had studied for the priesthood, and actually had pangs of conscience that he was bettering his position during the war, while others were losing everything. One morning, a woman in a fur coat (Rosa played by Elisabeth Trissenaar) steals his breakfast in the woods. It turns out she is Jewish, and escaped a transport train with her husband and daughter, but lost them in the excitement. Our hero Leon Wolny (Armin Mueller-Stahl) brings her home and hides her in his basement.

This is courageous, and could cost him everything, but his motives are not entirely altruistic, as he has been feeling the need of a woman, or at least sex with one, and doesn't much understand them. The film chronicles their relationship, and also gives a portrait of life in Poland during WW II. It would be hard not to sympathize with the Elisabeth Trissenaar character, but Hr. Wolny, despite his faults, is also a sympathetic character.

The one IMDb comment, despite a couple of factual errors, is worth repeating.

"A lonely German farmer (Armin Mueller-Stahl) hides a lovely, upper-class, Jewish lady from the Nazis. He falls in love with her and avoids helping her to escape; he would rather keep her with him. He hides the signal, that the lady's husband had left to show that he is still alive; the farmer would prefer that the husband be dead. This fascinating and subtle character study, by director Agnieszka Holland, depicts a man, torn between his conscience and his love, in a situation that he is unable to cope with adequately. Mueller-Stahl's performance is superb and very touching."

The full frame transfer is not especially good, but is watchable. It is in German with English subtitles

  • IMDb readers say 8.1, but with only 99 votes, not enough to qualify it for the top 10%. Women have it at 9.1, and men at 8.0. Even with so few votes, these are very good marks.
  • Ebert was unimpressed, saying that it didn't seem to him like a war was on. While Roger is one of my favorite reviewers, sometimes his take comes out of left field.
  • This is a VERY high C+. If you are sick to death of Holocaust films and despise reading subtitles, this one won't win you over, but if you are open to the subject and can cope with subtitles, it is a very good film.


Elisabeth Trissenaar shows breasts in a sex scene.
 Isa Haller shows partial breasts and buns in a sex scene.






Dann reports on Ask the Dust:

Well, if you're looking for a great quality version of the ocean scene, you won't see it here, I'm afraid. Let's just say that this 2006 Depression Era romance is a LOT better than the quality of the caps from this very dark and hard-to-cap scene.

Taken from John Fante's novel, it follows first-generation Italian Auturo Bandini, who is struggling to be a successful writer, and longing to find a blue-eyed blonde to share it with.

Instead, Bandini collides with a beautiful Mexican woman who is both passionate and unimpressed with Bandini's bluster. Eventually, romance blooms, but not without complications.

This is an excellent period piece that not only provides a good romance, but also a stark picture of very hard times in America. I just wish I did half as well with the caps as they did with the movie.

Salma Hayek Idina Menzel




The Longest Yard

No nudity in The Longest Yard (2005) but there is some sensational cleavage by Courteney Cox

(Zipped .avi - divx)

... and an extra is filling out a bikini very nicely.


Bitter Suite

Another lovely bikini filler is Kelli Garner in Bitter Suite (2000).


Max Havoc - Curse of the Dragon

Some more bikini fillers in Max Havoc - Curse of the Dragon (2004), this time by Tawney Sablan

and Joanna Krupa.

Nikki Ziering shows some cleavage.


An American Werewolf in Paris

The French actress Julie Delpy shows a lovely pair of breasts in An American Werewolf in Paris (1997).

(Zipped .avi - divx)


Deathlands - Homeward Bound

No nudity in the average sci-fi Deathlands - Homeward Bound (2003) but plenty of cleavage by Traci Lords (who only seems to ever display two facial expressions)

and some nice caps of Heather Bertram

and Jenya Lano.

Not the best quality, which goes with the movie.


Round Trip to Heaven

Plenty of topless women in Round Trip to Heaven (1992), three of whom are identifiable as Amy Rochelle,

Denise Zakovich

and Rowanne Brewer.


There are nice caps of Kristine Rose,

Julie McCullough

and Brioni Farrell.




Silver Strand

Nicollette Sheridan was a bit shy in Silver Strand (1995) but we see a bit of her backside.


The Wedding Date

We see a topless Debra Messing from behind in The Wedding Date (2005) 

(Zipped .avi - divx)

and there are some lovely pokies by Amy Adams

and Sarah Parish.



No real nudity in Tempo (2003).

Melanie Griffith, who is showing signs of too much plastic surgery, gives a very brief nipple flash

(Zipped .avi - divx)


and Rachael Leigh Cook spends a bit of time showing her underwear.







As promised, Alabama Jones and the Busty Crusade

Today's babes:

Cheyenne Silver and Nikki Nova

Nikki Nova alone

 Cheyenne Silver alone


... to be continued



Paola Senatore in Story of a Cloistered Nun