In The Line of Duty: Siege at Marion (1992, directed by Charles Haid)


After bombing several Mormon centers in Utah, religious extremist and polygamist Adam Swapp (Kyle Secord) has barricaded himself inside of a farm house with his wives and supporters. The FBI, led by Bob Bryant (Dennis Franz), have the house surrounded and are trying to convince Swapp to peacefully surrender. Swapp, however, has no intention of going down without a fight.

In the 1990s, NBC did a whole series of made-for-TV miniseries about real-life law enforcement operations that inevitably led to the death of at least one of the officers involved. They made so many of them and they churned them out so quickly that NBC even aired a movie about the Branch Davidian stand-off while it was still going on. Siege at Marion, the fourth of the In The Line of Duty films, feels like a precursor to what was eventually happen in Waco. Just as happened in Waco and with the attempts to arrest Randy Weaver at Ruby Ridge, critics claimed that the government came on too strong while the government claimed that they were merely enforcing the law.

Siege at Marion is the least interesting of all of the In The Line of Duty movies, mostly because the Marion siege was neither as mismanaged as what happened in Waco or as egregiously heavy-handed and disturbing as what happened in Ruby Ridge. Though based on a true story, Siege at Marion is a standard stand-off film with the only suspense coming from the film’s distasteful attempts to build up suspense as to whether it’ll be Dennis Franz, William H. Macy, or Ed Begley, Jr. who is killed in the line of duty. Since only one of them is given a backstory and a family, it’s easy to guess which one it will be.

The best thing about Siege of Marion is the cast. Dennis Franz was born to play cops and it’s interesting to see a pre-Fargo William H. Macy playing a non-nervous character. Kyle Secor is convincingly fanatical and unhinged as the messianic Adam Swapp. Secor would go on to star as Tim Bayliss on the much-missed Baltimore-set cop show, Homicide: Life on the Street. Speaking of classic cop shows, Siege at Marion was also directed by Charles Haid, who played Andy Renko on Hill Street Blues. As for the In The Line of Duty films, the last one was made in 1994 but they all live on in syndication.

Lisa Marie’s Oscar Predictions for January


Well, here we are. Another awards season is wrapping up. Almost all of the regional critic groups have announced their picks for the best of 2021. The Guilds have spoken. The front runners have emerged. Both Don’t Look Up and Being the Ricardos have weathered bad reviews and become probable Oscar nominees. If nothing else, I’ll have something to complain about for the next three or four months. At the same time, Power of the Dog has emerged as the critical favorite. Belfast seems to be the populist favorite. West Side Story is the big production that has to be nominated, even though no one seems to feel particularly strongly about it one way or the other. Dune is the blockbuster that the Academy is hoping will cause people to tune into the ceremony, especially now that it appears that the Spider-Man Oscar campaign has fizzled. Don’t Look Up is the “Let’s piss off the cons” nominee. Being the Ricardos is this year’s “Wow, our industry really is the best” nominee. Personally, I’m going to view tick, tick….Boom! as being the most likely dark horse to pull off an upset.

So, with all that in mind, here’s my last set of 2021 Oscar predictions.

Looking at the list below, I have to say that we certainly have a good race this year. It’s interesting that, this year, only films that were released between March and the end of December were eligible for the Oscars. 2021 was a very good year for movies! Not only do we have the nominees below but we also had films like The Father and Judas and the Black Messiah, both of which are 2021 films as far as I’m concerned.

(Consider this. If the Oscars had kept the eligibility window the same last year instead of extending it to accommodate films delayed by the pandemic, Anthony Hopkins would probably be the Best Actor front runner right now and the Academy probably would have given Chadwick Boseman a posthumous Best Actor award last April. I also imagine that Jesse Plemons would have a better chance of picking up a supporting actor nomination if the members of the Academy were currently screening both The Power of the Dog and Judas and the Black Messiah at the same time.)

To see how my thinking has evolved,  check out my predictions for March and April and May and June and July and August and September and October and November and December!

The Oscar nominations will be announced on February 8th. Below are my predictions!

Best Picture

Being The Ricardos
Belfast
CODA
Don’t Look Up
Dune
King Richard
Licorice Pizza
The Power Of The Dog
Tick, Tick….Boom!
West Side Story

Best Director

Jane Campion for The Power of the Dog

Adam McKay for Don’t Look Up

Lin-Manuel Miranda for tick, tick …. Boom!

Steven Spielberg for West Side Story

Denis Villeneuve for Dune

Best Actor

Nicolas Cage in Pig

Benedict Cumberbatch in The Power of the Dog

Andrew Garfield in tick, tick….Boom!

Will Smith in King Richard

Denzel Washington in The Tragedy of Macbeth

Best Actress

Jessica Chastain in The Eyes of Tammy Faye

Olivia Colman in The Lost Daughter

Jennifer Hudson in Respect

Nicole Kidman in Being the Riacardos

Kristen Stewart in Spencer

Best Supporting Actor

Bradley Cooper in Licorice Pizzia

Ciaran Hinds in Belfast

Troy Kostur in CODA

Jared Leto in House of Gucci

Kodi Smit-McPhee in The Power of the Dog

Best Supporting Actress

Caitriona Balfe in Belfast

Ariana DeBose in West Side Story

Kirsten Dunst in The Power of the Dog

Aunjanue Ellis in King Richard

Ruth Negga in Passing

Music Video of the Day: Tinoretto, It’s For You by Destroyer (2022, dir by ????)


Today’s music video of the day is the atmospheric video from Destroyer!  This video has a kind of You’ve-Been-Up-For-3-Days-On-Dexedrine feel to it.  I used to very much enjoy wandering around in the middle of the night so this video brought back some memories for me.

Enjoy!