Lisa’s Week In Review: 7/20/20 — 7/26/20


It’s difficult, isn’t it?  The constant onslaught of bad news can be hard take, especially when you know that it’s being pushed by people who have an incentive when it comes to keeping everyone depressed.  I’ve always said that one of the secrets to good mental health is to get away from social media and to go out and enjoy yourself.  Unfortunately, so many things have come together this year to take away that option for a lot of people.  When I do go out and talk to people, I discover that things aren’t as bad as you might think.  But when I stay inside and just look at twitter or the news, it’s easy to feel like the entire world is falling apart.

I was really looking forward to 2020.  This is the 10 year anniversary of this site and I had a lot planned.  Unfortunately, I’ve had to put a lot of those plans on hold.  For instance, it’s hard to do a series of reviews about the Olympics or Cannes when both of those events have been delayed.  It’s hard to review a series of political films when neither the Democratic nor the Republican convention is going to be occurring (at least not in their usual way) this year.  It’s difficult to review new films when all of the theaters are closed and all of the big films are being pushed to the side.  The same is true when it comes to reviewing TV shows.  The world’s on hold right now.  I’m not whining about it or playing the poor me game.  I’m just acknowledging the truth of the situation as far as my 2020 plans are concerned.

So, what do I do?  Do I give up, as so many others have?  Do I say, “Well, I’m just going to sit around and be miserable?”  Or do I simply put those plans on hold, secure in the knowledge that I will get a chance to do them eventually?  Me, I’m going with the latter.  As of right now, it looks like our 10 year anniversary celebrations are going to extend into 2021 because 2020 just doesn’t count.  Then again, perhaps we should make every day a celebration whether it’s an anniversary or not.

I was going to start work on a bunch of back to school reviews next month but now it looks schools might not be reopening.  So, we’ll put those reviews off until 2021.  I’ll just concentrate on getting my reviews for the October horrorthon prepared.  The important thing is to never ever give up.

Here’s what I did this week!

Films I Watched:

  1. After Midnight (2020)
  2. Arkansas (2020)
  3. Her Deadly Groom (2020)
  4. House (1985)
  5. I Was Lorena Bobbitt (2020)
  6. The Invisible Woman (2020)
  7. Mile High Escorts (2020)
  8. Murder in the Vineyard (2020)
  9. Night of Terror (1972)
  10. Psycho Yoga Instructor (2020)
  11. Shirley (2020)

Television Shows I Watched:

  1. The Alienist
  2. Children’s Hospital
  3. Degrassi
  4. Dragnet
  5. Fear City: New York vs. The Mafia
  6. House Hunters
  7. It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia
  8. The Love Boat
  9. Medical Police
  10. The Office
  11. The Powers of Matthew Star
  12. Saved By The Bell: The College Years
  13. Twilight Zone
  14. Wynonna Earrp

Books I Read:

  1. Mexican Gothic (2020) by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
  2. The Swap (2020) by Robyn Harding

Music To Which I Listened:

  1. BANKS
  2. Big Data
  3. Bob Moses
  4. Britney Spears
  5. Calvin Harris
  6. The Chemical Brothers
  7. Creed Bratton
  8. The Crystal Method
  9. Daft Punk
  10. Deadmau5
  11. Dillon Francis
  12. DJ Snake
  13. Elle King
  14. Elohim
  15. Ennio Morricone
  16. Future Islands
  17. Garth Emery
  18. HAIM
  19. Hardwell
  20. The Hunted
  21. Jakalope
  22. Lush
  23. Metric
  24. Public Service Broadcasting
  25. Rich White
  26. Saint Motel
  27. Taylor Swift
  28. UPSAHL

Our Continuing Tribute To Morricone:

  1. Theme From Frantic (Frantic)
  2. La Lucertola (Lizard In A Woman’s Skin)
  3. Spasmodicamente (Spasmo)
  4. The Theme From The Stendhal Syndrome (The Stendhal Syndrome)
  5. My Name Is Nobody (My Name Is Nobody)
  6. Piume di Cristallo (The Bird With The Crystal Plumage)
  7. For Love One Can Die (D’amore si muore)

News From Last Week:

  1. From Avatar 2 to Mulan: Delayed films and their new release dates
  2. Regis Philbin, TV’s Enduring Everyman, Dies at 88
  3. ‘Gone With the Wind’ star Olivia de Havilland dies at 104
  4. John Saxon, ‘Enter the Dragon,’ ‘Nightmare on Elm Street’ Actor, Dies at 83

Links From The Site:

  1. Erin wished everyone a Happy Moon Day and profiled artist Darrel Greene!  She also shared: Navy Romances, What A Body, Pleasure Island, No Mask For Murder, Diamond Head, Isle of Free Love, and Ah King!
  2. Jeff reviewed Cease Fire, A Cry For Help, Shell Game, Thunder Alley, Meatballs IV, Fools, and War Hunt!
  3. Ryan reviewed Five Perennial Virtues, MOAB, and Wimp Digest!
  4. I shared music videos from Public Service Broadcasting, Garth Emery, Metric, Saint Motel, Bob Moses, Creed Bratton, and Calvin Harris!  I reviewed Arkansas, After Midnight, Mile High Escorts, Murder in the Vineyard, Psycho Yoga Instructor, and I Was Lorena Bobbitt!  I shared tributes to Olivia de Havilland, John Saxon, and Stanley Kubrick!

More From Us:

  1. Ryan has a patreon!  Consider subscribing!
  2. At my music site, I shared songs from The Crystal Method, Lush, Elle King, Future Islands, Bob Moses & ZHU, The Hunted, and BANKS!
  3. At her photography site, Erin shared: Machines, Corner View, Four Ducks, That One Tree, Green, Fountains, and Made of Glass!

Want to see what I did last week?  Click here!

War Hunt (1962, directed by Denis Sanders)


In the last days of the Korean War, Pvt. Roy Loomis (Robert Redford) is assigned to an infantry unit that’s serving on the front lines.  Loomis is an idealist who believes in always doing the right thing and who believes that he’s truly fighting for the American way of life in Korea.  The company’s commander (Charles Aidman) is more cynical.  As he explains it, the job of the soldiers is not to win the war.  Their job is to stall the advance of the enemy long enough to let the politicians and the diplomats get what they want out of a peace settlement.  The soldiers are merely there to be sacrificed.

Loomis soon finds himself in conflict with Pvt. Endore (John Saxon).  Endore spends his night sneaking around behind enemy lines, killing soldiers, and gathering intelligence.  No one goes with Endore on these missions and Endore makes it clear that he doesn’t want to have anything to do with the other solders in the unit.  Because Endore usually returns with valuable intelligence, he’s allowed to do what he wants but it becomes clear that gathering intelligence is not what motivates Endore.  Endore loves war and killing.  In the United States, he would probably be on death row.  In Korea, at the height of the war, he’s a valuable asset.

Charlie (Tommy Matsuda) is an orphan boy who has been adopted as the company’s mascot.  Both Loomis and Endore have a bond with Charlie.  Loomis wants Charlie to go to an orphanage after the war so that he can hopefully be adopted and maybe brought over the United States.  Endore, however, plans to stay in Korea even after the war ends and he wants to keep Charlie with him.  He wants to turn Charlie into as efficient a killing machine as he is.

This low-budget but effective anti-war film may be best known for featuring Robert Redford in his first starring role but the film is stolen by John Saxon, who is frighteningly intense as Endore.  Endore is so in love with war that he continues to fight it even after the Armistice is declared.  Saxon plays him like a cool and calculating predator, a natural born killer.  He’s an introvert who rarely speaks to the other members of the company.  Even though he helps them by killing the enemy before the enemy can kill them, it’s clear that Endore doesn’t really care about the other members of the unit.  He just cares about killing.  He’s close to Charlie because Charlie is too young to realize just how dangerous Endore actually is.

Along with Saxon and Redford, War Hunt also features early performances from Tom Skerritt, Sydney Pollack, and Francis Ford Coppola.  (Coppola, who goes uncredited, plays an ambulance driver.)  Pollack and Redford met while they were both acting in this film and Pollack would go on to direct Redford in several more films.  One of those films, The Electric Horseman, would reunite Redford and Saxon.  Again, they would play adversaries.

Last night, when I heard John Saxon had died, I tried to pick his best performance.  I know that most people know him from his horror work and his role in Enter the Dragon.  Those are all good performances but, for me, Saxon was at his absolute best in War Hunt.

 

Song of the Day: For Love One Can Die by Ennio Morricone


Today’s song of the day comes from a 1972 Italian film called D’amore si muore.  I haven’t seen this film and I really don’t know much about it.  As far as I can tell, it appears that it might not even be available here in the U.S.  If anything, the film appears to be best-known for Ennio Morricone’s theme music.

From Morricone, here is a beautiful composition called For Love One Can Die:

Previous Entries In Our Tribute To Morricone:

  1. Deborah’s Theme (Once Upon A Time In America)
  2. Violaznioe Violenza (Hitch-Hike)
  3. Come Un Madrigale (Four Flies on Grey Velvet)
  4. Il Grande Silenzio (The Great Silence)
  5. The Strength of the Righteous (The Untouchables)
  6. So Alone (What Have You Done To Solange?)
  7. The Main Theme From The Mission (The Mission)
  8. The Return (Days of Heaven)
  9. Man With A Harmonic (Once Upon A Time In The West)
  10. The Ecstasy of Gold (The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly)
  11. The Main Theme From The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly (The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly)
  12. Regan’s Theme (The Exorcist II: The Heretic)
  13. Desolation (The Thing)
  14. The Legend of the Pianist (The Legend of 1900)
  15. Theme From Frantic (Frantic)
  16. La Lucertola (Lizard In A Woman’s Skin)
  17. Spasmodicamente (Spasmo)
  18. The Theme From The Stendhal Syndrome (The Stendhal Syndrome)
  19. My Name Is Nobody (My Name Is Nobody)
  20. Piume di Cristallo (The Bird With The Crystal Plumage)

Scene That I Love: Tom Cruise Crashes The Party in Eyes Wide Shut


Eye Wide Shut (1999, directed by Stanley Kubrick)

Stanley Kubrick would have been 92 years old today!

In honor of this visionary and his career, here is a wonderfully creepy scene from his final film, 1999’s Eyes Wide Shut.  Like so many of Kubrick’s films, it took a while for people to really appreciate Eyes Wide Shut.  It’s an odd and, at times, frustrating film but still a film touched by genius.

In this scene, Tom Cruise discovers that it’s not quite as easy to crash a super secret party as he thought it would be.

4 Shots From 4 Films: Special John Saxon Edition


4 Shots From 4 Films is just what it says it is, 4 shots from 4 of our favorite films. As opposed to the reviews and recaps that we usually post, 4 Shots From 4 Films lets the visuals do the talking!

Rest in Peace, the great and iconic John Saxon.

Here are….

4 Shots From 4 Films

Evil Eye (1963, dir by Mario Bava)

Enter the Dragon (1973, dir by Robert Clouse)

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (1987, dir by Chuck Russell)

Hellmaster (1992, dir by Douglas Schulze)

Rest In Peace, Olivia De Havilland


I woke up today to the news that Olivia De Havilland, the last of the great Golden Age stars, had died.  She was 104 years old and she spent all of those years as the epitome of a type of grace and class that we really don’t see much nowadays.  Her famous feud with her sister Joan Fontaine aside, it’s impossible to imagine an actress like Olivia de Havilland getting caught up in a silly twitter fight.

Here she is with one of her most frequent co-stars, Errol Flynn.  This short but sweet scene is from The Adventures of Robin Hood.

Olivia de Havilland, R.I.P.