Saturday, July 26, 2008

STARK’S PARKER GETS GRAPHIC NOVEL TREATMENT!

STARK’S PARKER GETS GRAPHIC NOVEL TREATMENT!

"When a fresh-faced guy in a Chevy offered him a lift, Parker told him to go to hell." --The Hunter, Richard Stark opening lineFrom
PW Comics Week on July 26, 2008:

Eisner Award-winning artist Darwyn Cooke will adapt the first four Parker novels by Richard Stark (aka Donald Westlake, a Grand Master of the Mystery Writers of America) as graphic novels, IDW announced today. The adaptations will be released at a rate of one every two years, starting in 2009 with The Hunter.

Richard Stark's antihero stories influenced an entire generation of crime writers and filmmakers including Elmore Leonard, Joe R. Lansdale, Richard Price, Brian Bendis, David Laptham, Dennis Lehane, Quentin Tarantino, and Martin Scorsese.

Stark fans often refer to the Parker adventures as the crack of crime fiction. After reading one book, you're hooked and before you know it you've devoured, like so many boxes of Milanos, some twenty books. The junkie you've become begins to sweat and shiver waiting for the next hit!

The perfect artistic choice for these adaptations, Cooke should offer the perfect methadone to tide you over until the latest Stark stuff hits the streets.

A tip of the fedora to:
http://darkforces.powbangzap.com/blog/default.htm

THE CHILDREN OF HUANG SHI!

THE CHILDREN OF HUANG SHI!

A little-known true story sensitively brought to the screen, The Children of Huang Shi is a sweeping but intimate story set against war-torn China in the 1930’s. The film centers on a young English journalist George Hogg (Jonathan Rhys Meyers), an American nurse Lee Pearson (Radha Mitchell), and the leader of a Chinese partisan group "Jack" Chen (Chow Yun Fat) who meet in desperate and unexpected circumstances.


Together they rescue 60 orphaned children, leading them on an extraordinary journey across hundreds of miles of treacherous terrain, through snow-covered mountains and an unforgiving desert. Along the way they discover the true meaning of love, responsibility and courage.

Hogg arrives in Shanghai from England in 1938 just as the Japanese are taking control and enlists as a war correspondent. In occupied Nanjing he witnesses the massacre of 200 Chinese and is about to be executed himself when guerrillas led by Chen come to the rescue.

Wounded, George ends up recuperating in a rundown children's orphanage in rural Huang Shi, where the boys are slow to warm to him. Inevitably, he becomes their champion. He has an occasional accomplice in nurse Lee Pearson, who was once Jack's lover. With the Japanese poised to advance and Chinese nationals on the prowl for young recruits, George decides to trek the entire brood to a safe village in the faraway Gobi desert.

This may sound like the kind of implicitly condescending Great White Father saga in which Hollywood specializes. But the story is true, and English director Roger Spottiswoode never depicts the Chinese as anything less than George's equals.

While the movie provides a heavy dose of inspiration, it never preaches. We don't need to be told these events actually took place because everything in it makes human sense. The message here is that it is only through such people that great humanitarian change is accomplished. You can argue with this thesis, but at least we're not talking about DC or Marvel Comics superheroes here. George, Jack, and Lee are real superheroes.

For some reason, the critics have not been kind to this film. I found it a welcome relief from the comic bloodbaths of Summer blockbusters. Spottiswoode stages the war atrocities depicted in The Children of Huang Shi on a realistic scale, giving them a chilling impact. The viewer feels the pain because it is real – unlike the numbing carnage graphically displayed in the likes of Wanted or The Dark Knight.

The Children of Huang Shi is an uplifting, beautifully photographed, historical epic with a human face. When the credits role under the faces and translated voices of some of the orphans who are still alive today, you will be riveted to your seat.


ROLAND SHAW ORCHESTRA DOES JAMES BOND!

ROLAND SHAW ORCHESTRA DOES JAMES BOND!

The Crime Lounge (
www.thecrimelounge.blogspot.com) has posted a fantastic rip of a ‘70s album by top arranger/composer Roland Shaw and his Big Bombastic Orchestra playing some of the best Bond traks every grooved into vinyl.

This is a double LP set from the 70's entitled The Return of James Bond in Diamonds are Forever and Other Secret Agent Themes (do these albums have long titles or what?) and must surely rank as one of the best collections of its kind.

As well as the usual Bond stuff, which appeared on various other Shaw collections, there are some great versions of TV themes played the way only Shaw can. Fantastic covers of The Avengers, The Ipcress File, Mission Impossible & Our Man Flint amongst others.

To link to the download click:

http://thecrimelounge.blogspot.com/2007/09/more-roland-shaw.html



RANDY PAUSCH, “LAST LECTURE” PROFESSOR – R.I.P.

RANDY PAUSCH, “LAST LECTURE” PROFESSOR – R.I.P.

When something really powerful comes along, even if it has already had massive exposure, it’s important to still acknowledge it.

When Carnegie Mellon University professor Randy Pausch learned he only had months to live, he turned his last lecture in September 2007 into a lesson on life.

The lecture, titled Really Achieving Your Childhood Dream, became an Internet sensation. It was viewed over 3.4 million times on YouTube.

Randy Pausch died of pancreatic cancer yesterday. He was 47.

To acknowlege the powerful message of his ‘Last Lecture,’ in which he spoke eloquently about life lessons he learned and gave advice to students on how to overcome obstacles and achieve their own goals, the YouTube video is presented below:



MICHAEL FEINSTEIN PAYS HOMAGE TO SINATRA!

MICHAEL FEINSTEIN PAYS HOMAGE TO SINATRA!

Four time Grammy-award nominee, singer/pianist Michael Feinstein is set to release his 24th album, The Sinatra Project. The album is set for release on September 2nd. The new album is a tribute to "The Chairman of the Board" himself, Frank Sinatra and is Feinstein's first recorded tribute to another performer.

With the help of producer-arranger Bill Elliot, Feinstein realized they wanted to record an album of great romantic songs that had been sung by "Ol' Blue Eyes."

"For years I've had the desire to celebrate Sinatra's musical sensibilities, but I have no desire to copy the classic songs that he rendered better than anyone else. I wanted to create an album that would explore his style of singing and his style of music" comments Feinstein.

To that end, the dynamic duo decided to record the album as they would have fifty years ago, in the famous last surviving recording studio from the days of stereo, Capital Studio A in Hollywood.
"We set up the recording sessions the way they were done back in the day, with the entire band in one room, drums next to the trumpets and saxes, using only a handful of microphones to capture the warmth and depth of the music" added Elliot.

The album is comprised of classics such as "Fools Rush In," "I've Got a Crush on You," "At Last Love," "Exactly Like you," and many more. Feinstein not only pays homage to Sinatra, but to many of his contemporaries, Ella Fitzgerald, Nat "King" Cole, Rosemary Clooney and other great singers of the post-war, pre-rock years. They even called upon Sinatra's favorite songwriting Alan and Marilyn Bergman to consult as Feinstein recorded "The Same, Hello, the Same Goodbye" originally written for Sinatra.

Dubbed "Ambassador of the Great American Songbook", Feinstein has played all around the world from Buckingham Palace to the White House. He will kick off the release of his new album with 6 special performances at his notable venue Feinstein's at Loews Regency in New York City, September 2nd – September 6th.

For more information on Feinstein, visit his website:
michaelfeinstein.com.

Source:
www.SmoothJazzNetwork.com


A tip of my fedora to my little sister Nubian Vixen!

Friday, July 25, 2008

ELVIS WEEK 2008!

ELVIS WEEK 2008!

Mephis is hosting it’s annual Elvis Week August 9-17. There will be a wide variety of activities ranging from film festivals, contests, fan club meetings, a gospel breakfast, concerts and much more.

Tickets are selling fast so book now if you want to celebrate The King's legacy. Many of the activities take place right on the premises of Graceland.

For more,
click here

A tip of the fedora to www.cinemaretro.com

QUANTUM OF SOLACE @ COMIC CON!

QUANTUM OF SOLACE @ COMIC CON!

Every year,
www.comingSoon.net tries to give readers an early look at the San Diego Comic-Con International floor before the doors even open. This year, they got in a day early and got a sneak peal at some of the items that were being set up.

The upcoming James Bond film "Quantum of Solace" was spotted amonst the build-out, with a banner of the new teaser poster and an Aston Martin DBS.

Read the report on the Bond website
www.mi6.co.uk

CONNIE FRANCIS HOSPITALIZED!

CONNIE FRANCIS HOSPITALIZED!

This just in from our blog buddy a www.hemingwayslounge.blogspot.com.

Singer Connie Francis hospitalized, misses N.Y. performance.

GARDEN CITY, N.Y. - Singer Connie Francis, who recorded '50s and '60s pop hits including "Who's Sorry Now?" and "Lipstick on Your Collar," remains in a Long Island hospital after falling ill earlier this week.

Her agent, Mike Church, says Francis, a Newark native, had been scheduled to perform Wednesday night with Neil Sedaka at The Capital One Bank Theatre at Westbury. Instead, she was taken to Long Island Jewish Medical Center with dangerously high blood pressure.

The singer, who is 69, had been expected to leave the coronary care unit on Friday. Church says "she's doing well," but doctors decided she should remain there for at least another day for observation.

MORE LIFE ON MARS!

MORE LIFE ON MARS!

www.zap2it.com tells us the reworked "Life on Mars" has landed a highly recognizable face for one of its central roles: Harvey Keitel

The "Reservoir Dogs" star and "Bugsy" Oscar nominee has signed on to ABC's version of the British hit about present-day cop Sam Tyler (Jason O'Mara), who's transported back to 1973 after being hit by a car. Keitel will play Detective Gene Hunt, Sam's boss in the 1970s version of the NYPD, according to several news reports.

"Life on Mars" will be the first regular TV role in Keitel's decades-long career. His last TV appearance came in the controversial ABC telefilm "The Path to 9/11" in 2006.

Keitel is replacing Colm Meaney, who played the part in the original pilot (Philip Glenister played Hunt in the BBC series). Aside from O'Mara, very little from the first pilot, which was written by David E. Kelley, is remaining. Showrunners Andre Nemec and Josh Appelbaum have moved the show's setting from Los Angeles to New York (filming will also take place in the Big Apple), and most of the parts are being recast too.

Former "Sopranos" star Michael Imperioli will also be part of the show, playing another of Sam's new colleagues.

Keitel's credits also include "Pulp Fiction," "Bad Lieutenant," "National Treasure" and "The Piano."

NEW PRISONERS!

NEW PRISONERS!

www.zap2it.com has the news that former "Jericho" star, English actor, Lennie James is taking up residence in a new village.

James, who played Robert Hawkins on CBS' cult series, has signed on to AMC's remake of the classic 1960s show "The Prisoner." He'll play Number 147, a resident of the mysterious Village where a former secret agent, now known as Number 6 ( Jim Caviezel), finds himself imprisoned.

Three other actors have also joined the series, AMC says. Ruth Wilson, a Golden Globe nominee this year for a "Masterpiece Theatre" production of "Jane Eyre," Hayley Atwell ("Mansfield Park," " Brideshead Revisited") and Jamie Campbell-Bower ("Sweeney Todd") will play other residents of the Village.

Ian McKellen ("The Lord of the Rings," "Gods and Monsters") was previously cast as Number 2, the apparent head of the Village and Number 6's primary antagonist.

AMC is producing "The Prisoner" with British broadcaster ITV and Granada International, with Bill Gallagher attached to write. The six-hour miniseries is scheduled to air sometime next year.

In addition to "Jericho," James' credits include "The State Within," "Snatch" and "24 Hour Party People."

62 YEARS AGO TODAY!

62 YEARS AGO TODAY!

Our blog buddy at http://coolnessistimeless.blogspot.com/ reminds us today was a day that comedy history was made. It was the debut of Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis as a a comedy duo.


These two rocked the house at a joint in Atlantic City on this date in 1946. They would go on to rule the box office, television, stage, and radio for the next decade. Dino and Jerry are true comedy legends. Their partnership still today brings much joy and laughter to people. I raise a toast to both of them. Cheers!reminds us Dean Martin & Jerry Lewis made their debut 62 Years ago today and comedy history was made.

The debut of Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis as a a comedy duo rocked the house at a joint in Atlantic City on this date in 1946. They would go on to rule the box office, television, stage, and radio for the next decade.


Dino and Jerry are true comedy legends. Their partnership still today brings much joy and laughter to people.

We raise a toast to both of them. Cheers!

DAVE DAMIANI @ CATALINA JAZZ!

DAVE DAMIANI W/ THE BLUE NOTE SWING ORCHESTRA @ CATALINA JAZZ!

Dave and the Blue Note Swing Orchestra will be digging it at their upcoming Catalina Jazz Club date. If you haven’t caught this act yet, you owe it to yourself to swing by!

Friday Aug 01, 2008
8:00 PM
CATALINA JAZZ CLUB
6725 W. SUNSET BLVD
HOLLYWOOD, 90028

DAVE WILL BE DOING CLASSIC SINATRA CHARTS WITH ONE OF THE MOST SWINGIN' BANDS IN LA!


CHARITY AUCTION: DATE WITH BOND GIRL!

CHARITY AUCTION: DATE WITH BOND GIRL!

The charity auction site Buy Once Give Twice is offering a unique opportunity for big time (and wealthy) James Bond fans.

This is a fabulous chance for an exclusive lunch or dinner date with the famous Bond girl, Britt Ekland. One lucky bidder will join the star for a meal of up to £150 in value at the magnificent Scott's Restaurant in London.
The beautiful Swedish actress, best known for her role as Bond girl Mary Goodnight in the 007 movie ‘Man With The Golden Gun', is celebrated as one of the world's most talked about, glamorous and photographed Hollywood stars. This is a once in a lifetime chance to meet the lady herself and enjoy her company over a fantastic meal.

This has kindly been donated by Caprice Holdings Ltd and can be taken any time in 2008 according to Britt Ekland's availability.

To bid click:

http://www.buyoncegivetwice.co.uk/lots/britt_ekland


The auction ends Tuesday August 26th.


40TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION OF CASINO ROYALE!

40TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION OF CASINO ROYALE!

Dubed “the spoof to end all spoofs”, I didn’t get this James Bond anomally the first time around. But with the distance of 40 years, I’ve moved from hating it to being mildly amused – it is definitely ‘of its time.’

After being delayed for various unfathomable reasons, the 40th anniversary edition of Casino Royale will be released in October.

The pakaging hype follows:

Welcome to Casino Royale, the ultimate psychedelic secret agent satire! Packed with girls, guns and gags galore, this “very funny picture” delivers “laughs all the way!”

Starring Peter Sellers, Ursula Andress, David Niven, Joanna Pettet, Orson Welles, Daliah Lavi, Woody Allen, Deborah Kerr, William Holden and others, and with an original score from Oscar winner Burt Bacharach, this groovy spy movie is "even farther out" than all other spoofs combined!

British Intelligence is waning in every possible way! When the diabolical SMERSH begins killing off Her Majesty's Secret Service, super-agent James Bond (Niven) recruits six more "James Bonds" to confuse and conquer their enemies. But it won't be easy. They'll have to face an army of irresistibly sexy female operatives, exploding robotic fowl, parachuting Indians and a germ that makes all women beautiful, but kills all men over 4'6!

Special features:

Commentary with James Bond Historians Steven Jay Rubin and John Cork
The Making of Casino Royale
Bond James Bond
A 3 Ring Circus
More Directors, More Stars
The Big Climax
It's a Wrap!
Theatrical Trailer

MYSTERY READERS JOURNAL SUMMER ISSUE!

MYSTERY READERS JOURNAL SUMMER ISSUE!

The summer issue of the always entertaining Mystery Readers Journal focusing on Irish mysteries is currently available.

There are several articles available online for non-subscribers including a nice pioece by Andrew Greely on his Nuala Anne McGrail mysteris, which I have long enjoyed.

MYSTERY READERS JOURNAL

Irish Mysteries

Volume 24, No. 2, Summer 2008
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Ordinary Decent Criminals: Irish Noir Fiction in the 21st Century by Glenn Harper
Is Sister Fidelma a Credible Historical Character? by Gail Egbers
The Brighter Side of Irish Crime Writing by Dick Adler
Guardians of the Peace by Jim Doherty
AUTHOR! AUTHOR!
Shadows of Guilt: Ireland in the 1950s by John Banville, aka Benjamin Black
Distance Lends Perspective by Colin Bateman
Billy Boyle Goes to Ireland by James R. Benn
An Irish Heroine by Rhys Bowen
Crime Pays—On the Page by Declan Burke
No, Not the Blarney Stone by Ken Bruen
An Irishman's Lot by Doug M. Cummings
The Importance of Being Irish by David Dickinson
When Irish Writing Roots Are Showing... by Carole Nelson Douglas
Where Fact Meets Fiction by Garbhan Downey
Killing the Peace Process by Ruth Dudley Edwards
The Roots of Murder by Tana French
Rachel O'Reilly's Murder by Jenny Friel
Josephine Tey and Nuala Anne McGrail by Father Andrew M. Greeley
Finding Mythic Ireland by Lyn Hamilton
Foxes, Cabbages & the Ancient Laws of Ireland by Cora Harrison
Stumbling on a Body in the Bog by Erin Hart
How the Irish Created My Civilization by Jeremiah Healy
I Owe My Life to an Irish Criminal by Eoin Hennigan
Irish Soul by Tobsha Learner
A Literary Tour of One Dublin Author by Stephen Leather
The Irish in P.I. Frank Johnson's Debut Outing by Ed Lynskey
Casting a Cold Eye on the Gloss of Modern Ireland by K.T. McCaffrey
Irish Connection by John McEvoy
Patrolling the Border by Brian McGilloway
The Absence of Death by Cormac Millar
Writing and Ireland by Pat Mullan
The Elusive Irishman by Teagan Oliver
An Arresting Tale by Ralph Robb
The Irish in Me by Les Roberts
Balancing the Book by Zoë Sharp
Lark and the Quaker Connection by Sheila Simonson
Interwoven Irish by Therese Szymanski
Irish Crime Writing: Truth Sells Better Than Fiction by Neville Thompson
Sister Fidelma, 7th-Century Supersleuth by Peter Tremayne
COLUMNS
In Short: Murder Most Irish by Marvin Lachman
Just The Facts: Mole To Manhunter by Jim Doherty
Children's Hour: Irish Mysteries by Gay Toltl Kinman
An Irish Author in the Golden Age: Freeman Wills Crofts by Philip Scowcroft
MRI MAYHEM by Janet A. Rudolph
Letters to the Editor
From the Editor's Desk by Janet A. Rudolph

Thursday, July 24, 2008

MORE HAIRSPRAY!

MORE HAIRSPRAY!

Nothing helps a studio look its best like a new coat of 'Hairspray.'According to Variety, New Line has asked John Waters to write a treatment for a sequel to the 2007 hit musical based on the hit Broadway show based on his 1988 film.Got that straight?

The trade paper says that most of the behind-the-scenes creative team on the Golden Globe nominated musical is expected to return. That would include director-choreographer Adam Shankman, producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron and Tony-winning songwriters Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman.

The 2007 film, which has taken in more than $200 million worldwide, was set in 1962 Baltimore and starred John Travolta, Christopher Walken, Nikki Blonsky, Zac Efron, Queen Latifah, Michelle Pfeiffer, James Marsden, Amanda Bynes, Elijah Kelley and Allison Janney.

None of those stars had sequel options in their contracts. Variety says, though, that New Line hopes to get the original cast back together and bring the new "Hairspray" to theaters by July 2010.

WILL THE REAL MATT HELM PLEASE STAND UP!

WILL THE REAL MATT HELM PLEASE STAND UP!

J. Kingston Pierce, editor of The Rap Sheet, has a nice piece on Don Hamilton’s revered secret agent/assassin character Matt Helm.


“If readers have trouble nowadays trying to put their finger on exactly who Matt Helm was, it’s not without good reason. After all, the character has gone through three significant and contradictory incarnations, including a television resurrection that tried to meld his original and movie-modified personalities. Were Helm still alive and active, he might be no less confused than the rest of us.”


To read the complete article click:

www.therapsheet.blogspot.com/2008/07/best-tv-crime-drama-openers-23.html

NEW VEGAS TALE: THE SEVEN SINS

NEW VEGAS TALE: THE SEVEN SINS

Blog buddy
www.hemingwayslounge.blogspot.com tips us to a Hollywood reporter article stating producers Moritz Borman and Peter Graves have licensed film rights to Jon Land's current action thriller novel The Seven Sins: The Tyrant Ascending.

The story centers on a Sin City casino owner, Michael "The Tyrant" Tiranno, the adopted son of an Italian crime lord who is called upon to defend the gambling mecca from terrorist attacks.

Allegedly, the character is loosely inspired by Las Vegas entrepreneur Fabrizio Boccardi's life story and the film will be designed as the first of a series of James Bond-like adventure tales.

JAMES BOND – MISSION ARSENAL GAGETS!

JAMES BOND – MISSION ARSENAL GAGETS!

If you are a James Bond fan with an affinity for the gadgets and toys produced to coincide with each movie you better hope your checkbook has deep pockets.

www.commanderbond.net informs us some of Corgi’s planned James Bond Mission Arsenal gadgets are available for preorder with an October 2008 delivery date.

Corgi, who was recently purchased by Hornby, revealed it’s line of 007 Mission Arsenal gagets at the 2008 UK ToyFair.

Scheduled for release on 29 October in order to capitilize on the Bond mania created by the theatrical debut of Quantum of Solace, the line-up includes:

Nano Surveillance Camera (view)
Pen with UV Ink Revealer (
view)
Crypto Decoder Device (
view)
MP3 Comlink Set (
view)
GPS Hideout Tracker (
view)
Secret Sender Cell Phones (
view)

So far, two of the Bond gadgets have appeared on Amazon:

James Bond ‘Mission Arsenal’ - Pen with UV Ink Revealer
Retail price: $14.99
New James Bond technology
Cool for older kids
Attractive to younger kids
Includes pen with invisible ink Cartridge and message revealer with backpack clip
Nothing is what it seems, in the world of Bond products
Order the Corgi Pen with UV Ink Revealer from Amazon.com

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

James Bond ‘Mission Arsenal’ - Crypto Decoder Device
Retail price: $19.99
New James Bond technology
Create secret text messages, with one touch message encoding using real-world PDA styling
LCD display and cell phone keyboard, multiple decoder keys create agent specific messages
Insert decoder key, type message, encode, remove key and pass to agent for future decoding
Includes message encoding, decoding devise and 3 accessory decoder keys

BEKA COOPER - TERRIER!

BEKA COOPER – TERRIER!

This heroic fantasy novel by the wonderful author Tamora Pierce was my pick for best novel of 2006. I’ve just listened to it again on CD and thoroughly enjoyed it as much the second time around. Pierce is impressively blessed with the gifts of the storyteller and I can't recommend this book highly enough.

In the midieval city of Tortall, the Provost’s Guards – known as Dogs – patrol the slums with a fierce intensity. Orphaned Beka Cooper, 16, is a trainee – a Puppy - in the Provost's Guard.

Beka tells her own story in a journal she keeps from her very first day as a
puppy. In its pages she writes of her days with her training Dogs, the pair who are to teach her what they know of survival on the streets in the city's toughest slum. Both are veterans. Tunstall is an easygoing, funny man who can be a little crazy in a fight. Goodwin is a small, tough woman who is opposed to Beka's presence at the beginning, a hard Dog and a smart one. They take charge when Beka brings them word of two vicious sets of crimes. Like everyone else in Beka's life, her partners find out that once Beka gets a case in her teeth, she hangs onto it like a terrier until it's been solved.

Having spent the first half of her life in Tortall's slums, she is driven by the need to do what is right and see justice done. Paired with Tunstall and Goodwin and aided by her own gifts of magic, Beka learns her job, makes friends with two mages and a thief, and uncovers two serial killers who prey on the poor and unnoticed.

This is the first book in a planned trilogy. I, for one, can’t wait for the second book in the series, Bloodhound, to hit the shelves.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

THE WISEGUYS ON MARTINIINTHEMORNING.COM!

THE WISEGUYS ON MARTINIINTHEMORNING.COM!

Hey!


Our great pals, The Wiseguys, are going to be doing a live interview with host Brad "Martini" Chambers on the Internet radio station "Martini In The Morning" tomorrow, Thursday morning, at 9:00 am PSTSo tune in to www. martiniinthemorning.com and click on Listen Live to hear host Brad Chambers and our pals The Wiseguys as they spin their debut CD and talk about life, music

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, RAYMOND CHANDLER!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, RAYMOND CHANDLER!

Our blog buddies at
www.billcrider.blogspot.com and www.therapsheet.blogspot.com help us celebrated Raymond Chandler’s 120 birthday (though he died in 1959), with his favorite Chandler lines, taken from a fine little book called Philip Marlowe’s Guide to Life (2005), edited by Martin Asher.

There was a sad fellow over on a bar stool talking to the bartender, who was polishing a glass and listening with that plastic smile people wear when they are trying not to scream.
(The Long Goodbye)

It was a nice face, a face you get to like. Pretty, but not so pretty that you would have to wear brass knuckles every time you took it out.
(Farewell, My Lovely)

“The first divorce is the only tough one. After that it’s merely a problem of mathematics.”
(The Long Goodbye)

“Los Angeles was just a big dry sunny place with ugly homes and no style, but goodhearted and peaceful. It had the climate they just yap about now. People used to sleep out on porches. Little groups who thought they were intellectual used to call it the Athens of America. It wasn’t that either, but it wasn’t a neon-lighted slum either.”
(The Little Sister)

I needed a drink, I needed a lot of life insurance, I needed a vacation, I needed a home in the country. What I had was a coat, a hat and a gun.
(Farewell, My Lovely)

The minutes went by on tiptoe, with their fingers to their lips.
(The Lady in the Lake)

And, of course, the best and perhaps most often quoted line Chandler ever got down on paper:

It was a blonde. A blonde to make a bishop kick a hole in a stained glass window.
(Farewell, My Lovely)


It’s sentences like these that make this author’s books worth reading over and over again.

ROLLEIFLEX MINI DIGITAL CAMERA!

ROLLEIFLEX MINI DIGITAL CAMERA!

This was just too cool to pass up. I remember these types of cameras as collector’s items, now, the Rollei has been updated (and miniaturized) into this: a 5-megapixel Rolleiflex Mini Digital Camera.

The Rolleiflex Mini Digital Camera proudly continues the Rollei Twin Lens Reflex tradition, pushing the famed camera into beautifully tiny territory! First developed in Germany in the 1920's, the Rollei 6x6cm Twin Lens Reflex Camera has always been a preferred tool for serious photography, especially portraits. And because it's as pretty as the pictures it takes, the Rollei has became a classic of 20th century camera design. Now, many of the original's unique features (and all of its charm) can be yours in a retro-miniature package too awesome to believe! A 5 Mega Pixel camera with autofocus technology, the Rollei Mini allows you to shoot from a distance of 4 inches to infinity, saving each image to a Mini SD Card. Still the undisputed choice for portraits, the camera features an up-facing 1.1" square display for waist level shooting, which encourages your subjects to go on looking and acting naturally instead of posing for the camera. Crank lever 'film advance"; JPEG image format; 4.9mm F2.8 Lens; 1/15-1/2500s Shutter Speed; Automatic While Balance and Exposure Control; Auto power-off. Imported. Wipe clean.

A tip of the fedora to www.neatorama.com

ITC SOUNDTRACKS!

ITC SOUNDTRACKS!

Tanner at
www.doubleosection.blogspot.com has tipped us several times to The british entertainment company Network TV and their collections of ‘60s and ‘70s British TV crime/spy series on DVD (mostly from the vaults of the ITC channel). Tanner has also covered Network’s fantastic CD collections of sountracks from some of the same series.

In the past Network has successfully released soundtrack collections for The Prisoner, Randall & Hopkirk, Deceased, and Man In A Suitcase (the seminal, gritty spy series of the ‘60s and a forrunner to today’s top spy show, Burn Notice). The latter collection consists of 5 CD and over 300 pieces of music.

Now, Tanner tips us to Network’s latest classic ITC soundtrack. This time the wonderful Department S (the first Jason King series – not extremely well know in the US) gets the Network treatment.

According to
Network's website:

Never previously released and compiled from the original master tapes, this three-CD set comprises Edwin Astley’s celebrated music for Department S, containing over 180 pieces which were specially commissioned for the series. Including extensive liner notes from archive television historian Andrew Pixley, this set is an essential purchase for all ITC aficionados.

Right now, it's available exclusively from Network's website, but absolutely worth checking out. These collections are awesome and must haves for true soundtrack fans. as this is here's hoping that Network's next project is Ken Thorne's Persuaders scores!

Future releases scheduled from Network include The Saint and The Champions – and Tanner is hoping for a definitive music collection from The Pursuaders.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

VIVIAN SCOTSON @ THE TWISTED WHEEL!

VIVIAN SCOTSON @ THE TWISTED WHEEL!

SARA GAZAREK @ LACMA!

SARA GAZAREK @ LACMA!

Everyone is invite to a special performance by Sara and her band this Friday! They will be performing a FREE show at everyone's favorite Los Angeles Museum, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art!

Here is all of the information:

The Sara Gazarek Band:
Sara Gazarek, voice and glockenspiel
Josh Nelson, piano and keyboards
Sam Minaie, bassZach Harmon, drums and toys
Friday, July 25th, 2008
6pm-8pm
LA Times Central Court
5905 Wilshire Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90036

Sara and the band have a lot of new music planned and will be playing old favorites as well!

Hope to see you there!

For more information, please visit http://www.saragazarek.com/

SAM SPADE IN SAN FRANCISCO!

SAM SPADE IN SAN FRANCISCO!

Owen Smith pays tribute to the classic San Francisco hard-boiled detective novel, Dashiell Hammett's The Maltese Falcon, with a series of colorful and expressive characters showcased in posters commissioned by the San Francisco Arts Commission’s Art on Market Street 2008 Program.


The posters will be installed from Monday, June 16th, to Thursday, September 18th, on the pedestrian side of kiosks on Market Street between Van Ness and the Embarcadero.

And to kick off the project, Don Herron and Smith will lead one of
Herron's popular Dashiell Hammett Tours beginning at the southeast corner of Market and Third Streets on Saturday, June 28th, at 1 PM, absolutely free of charge. You'll get to scope out Spade and Archer’s office and other Falcon landmarks, as well as check out Smith’s posters and hear how he came up with each one.

LAS VEGAS: SEASON FIVE!

LAS VEGAS: SEASON FIVE!

I was never a big fan of the more soap opera storylines from this series, but the casting of Tom Selleck as the new Casino owner for season five makes viewing worthwhile.

Text from the back cover: "Las Vegas is hotter than ever as new players come to town for a sizzling Season 5 of TV’s sharpest and sexiest drama! As recently installed Montecito Casino owner A.J. Cooper, Primetime Emmy® Award and Golden Globe® winner Tom Selleck ups the stakes for his elite Las Vegas surveillance team in 17 episodes plus two double length episodes filled with smokin’- hot bodies and intense new scandals! Special guest appearances by Cheryl Ladd (Charlie’s Angels), Geoffrey Owens (The Cosby Show), Rachel Boston (American Dreams) in the show TV Guide calls “TV’s sure bet for a fun time.”

Tom Selleck, Josh Duhamel, Molly Sims. Four-disc set with 17 episodes, $59.98. Extras: Gag reel, VFX featurette, "Hot Stuff" featurette, Webcasts. (Universal).

21!

21!

New out this week on DVD is one of last year’s lower key, yet enjoyable films, 21. Text from the back cover tells us the film was "inspired by the true story of MIT students who mastered the art of card counting and took Vegas casinos for millions in winnings. Looking for a way to pay for tuition, Ben Campbell (Jim Sturgess) finds himself quietly recruited by MIT's most gifted students in a daring plot to break Vegas. With the help of a brilliant statistics professor (Kevin Spacey) and armed with fake IDs, intelligence and a complicated system of counting cards, Ben and his friends succeed in breaking the impenetrable casinos. Now, his challenge is keeping the numbers straight and staying one step ahead of the casinos before it all spirals out of control."

Kevin Spacey, Laurence Fishburne, Kate Bosworth, Liza Lapira, Josh Gad, Jim Sturgess, Masi Oka, Sam Golzari. Extras: Commentary, making-of documentary, a featurette on blackjack and card counting. Also available on Blu-ray Disc. (Sony).

Monday, July 21, 2008

FROM MILITARY DRAMA TO HEROIC FANTASY!

FROM MILITARY DRAMA TO HEROIC FANTASY!

Sci Fi has greenlit a miniseries, Mirablis, starring David James Elliott. The former JAG star will portray a character named John Serrogoth and Natassia Malthe (Elektra) will portray Perfidia.

The Sci Fi original will be a four-hour fantasy adventure minseries set in a magical, distant land fueled by the all-powerful sorcery-grade metal known as bloodsteel. As the substance starts to dwindle, the evil warlord Dragon Eye wreaks havoc to control all resources, but is faced by opposition in the form of four ordinary citizens brought here by an ancient prophecy. In order to foil Dragon Eye, their quest is to seek the Crucible, the fabled source of all bloodsteel, before the dark forces destroy Mirabilis.


HAPPY BIRTHDAY -- DIANA RIGG!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY - DIANA RIGG!

The grand dame of The Avengers and Her Majesty's Secret Service (the most underrated of the Bond films) may be 70 today, but she hasn't aged a day in my mind from when she was in her prime.
She may look back at The Avengers and the catsuit everyone remembers with amused distain - and she is certainly much more complex and talented than the icon she portrayed - but being remembered as Emma Peel and one of the sexiest women in Britain can't be all bad.