We are approaching the holidays, and for many of us it is a time when the family gathers together in celebration. Yet in some families secrets, past hurts, jealousies and who knows what else can turn a time of celebration into a time dedicated to tip-toeing around each other while trying to maintain the spirit of the season. The Lion in Winter based on a play by James Goldman, tells of just such a gathering. Set during a family Christmas gathering in 1183 this dark comedy is about the Royal Family of England made up of King Henry II, his wife, Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine, their children, Richard, John and Geoffrey, the King’s mistress Alais, and the newly crowned King Philip, who was visiting from France. As you can imagine there is politics, innuendo and backstabbing throughout the visit. Read more about Lion in Winter
There’s a business in Logansport, Indiana known as Fiberglass Freaks. They produce my dream car. They don’t make a lot of them as each car is custom built by hand. The car is known as “The Batmobile.” Over the years in the movies and television there have been several Batmobiles, but the 1966 Batmobile is perhaps the best known and one of the most loved. It is this car this small company builds. The popularity of this car is not just because of its distinctive lines and style, but because of the popularity of a camp, comedy version of one of the most well-known crime fighters in comic book history, Batman.
The 1960’s Batman TV series was originally conceived as a drama; at some point the decision was made to turn it in to a camp comedy. I don’t know why the decision was made but the result was almost literally pure gold. Read more about BATMAN (1966 - TV Series)
The sound of a projector is heard as an old 8mm home movie is projected on to a screen. They show a young father playing with his children, making faces at the camera, laughing and enjoying his life. The camera pulls back behind an older couple watching the film from their couch. Then a close up. The older man is biting his upper lip then asks, “Who is that?” “That’s you honey” comes the reply. A pause then, “Oh, there I am.” And he laughs. Another pause, “Who’s that with me?” “That’s your daughter. Your first daughter Debbie.” And so begins this 2014 documentary on the life of Glen Campbell, now in his 70’s, struggling with Alzheimer’s and preparing to go on one last farewell tour. Read more about Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me.
I like jokes that are somewhat dry in their delivery—jokes delivered so straight they take just a couple of seconds to register. Though Support Your Local Sheriff has its share of comedy pratfalls, it’s also filled with James Garner’s brand of straight, matter-of-fact delivery. Read more about Support Your Local Sheriff
The story of Frankenstein's monster has long been one of the staples of horror. The book Frankenstein, written by Mary Shelly, wife of poet Percy Shelly is one of the modern horror stories and is also considered one of the earliest science fiction stories. The 1931 movie Frankenstein is very loosely based on Mary Shelly’s book. One of the most striking differences being that of the appearance of the monster. In the book the monster begins as an almost handsome and well-spoken man and only turns ugly as his skin begins to rot away due to poor blood circulation. For most of us however Frankenstein’s monster is best remembered as the large, groaning brute with a flat head and bolt shaped electrodes sticking out of his neck. Frankenstein stars Boris Karloff as the monster and Colin Clive as inventor Henry Frankenstein. Read more about Frankenstein – 1931
The month of October is one of the most popular months for watching films of the horror genre. It also seems a suitable time to post a tribute to the August 30th passing of director Wes Craven who did much to influence the direction of the modern horror film. His 1984 Nightmare on Elm Street introduced Freddy Krueger, one of the longest lasting and memorable horror characters since Boris Karloff’s monster in the 1931 movie Frankenstein. In 1996 he introduced us to “Ghostface” in Scream, a second horror creation destined to become almost legend. Yet it would be wrong of us to limit Wes Craven’s talent to only the horror genre. He was also known for films such as Music of the Heart starring Meryl Streep as a music teacher struggling to teach violin to inner city children and as one of twenty directors of Paris, je t’aime a collection of stories about the city of love.
This month is a perfect time to explore the legacy of films that we have been left by this notable director. The link below will create a list of DVDs owed by the Library for your enjoyment.