Rex Reed picks his best films of 2013: Rex Reed: The Best Films of 2013 | The New York Observer



In other important movie news, Yahoo casts the rumored Gilligan’s Island big screen reboot:

Michael Cera as Gilligan.  Hmmmm.  Maybe.  Kelsey Grammar as Thurston Howell III?  An interesting way to go.  Mila Kunis as Mary-Anne?

1No.  Just…no.

Hey, remember that episode of The Simpsons where a visit to the Duff Beer factory reveals that Duff, Duff Light and Duff Dry all originate from the same spigot and are exactly the same beer?  Well, I thought of that when I saw this “Bourbon Family Tree” –

1And read this article: Chart: The Family Tree of Bourbon Whiskey –  Okay, so while they’re not exactly the same, many are pretty damn close.

From the ever-informative gang at 5 Movies Based on True Stories (with Depressing Epilogues)

Just in time for the holidays!  17 Hilariously Tragic Holiday Baking Fails

Interesting stuff!  The 25 Must-Watch Food Videos of 2013  Anthony Bourdain’s visit to Tokyo’s Robot Restaurant makes the list!


Duptiang writes: “Oh and how goes Akemi’s viewing of the Stargate?”

Answer: So far, so good.  We just watched Time last night and are moving on to Life tonight.  This weekend, I’ll be posting her thoughts on the individual episodes in a special “Stargate: Universe 1.0 – The Japanese Girlfriend Edition” blog entry.

Glen writes: “Joseph, since Stargate series have gone off the air for over half a decade now, have you watched any of the 3 series from the first episode to the last in a marathon watching binge?”

Answer: As stated above, Akemi and I are working our way through the first season of Stargate: Universe, averaging an episode a night.  Stay tuned for her review.

The Last Penfighter writes: ”

As an aspiring science-fiction writer, I’ve been having difficulty in finding a producer who has more than just promises to offer. This is likely because it is becoming increasingly difficult to find a ‘safe’ means of presenting yourself and your ideas to working professionals when you have no means of networking with those individuals. This leaves those like me with talent and ability but no formal schooling (in the specific field of script writing) either at the mercy of pretenders or facing a lot of closed doors. How might someone in my shoes find a way to open some of those doors?”

Answer: Simply put, you need an agent, someone who can get you in those closed doors and, when necessary, offer you a little tough love criticism of your work.  Like most producers, however, many agents do not accept unsolicited submissions.  You need to do a little research, check out a publication listing agencies that DO accept unsolicited submissions, and then query them.  Tell them a bit about yourself and ask them if you can send them your script.  When you find one (or a few) that give you the go-ahead, then send them YOUR BEST SCRIPT.  Give them a few weeks to read it and then follow up with a polite email.

JeffW writes: “As for the bitterest loss, it would have to be the 1996 ALCS Orioles-Yankees series opening game. I was watching this game on video tape in England at the time (long story) and I could not believe how it ended. In the (potentially) final out of the game that would have won it for the Orioles, Orioles outfielder, Tony Tarasco, was lined up near the right field fence to make the catch off of a Derek Jeter hit when a Yankees fan leans over the fence and grabs the ball. The Umps refused to call it fan interference. The Orioles end up losing the series by one game and the Yankees go onto the World Series. It’s amazing to me how all the bad calls seemed to break for the Yankees…”

Answer: Wow.  I’m not a big baseball fan and didn’t know anything about this horrible call until I clicked on the link you provided.  Unbelievable.  And, yes, it is curious how all the big market teams – especially the Yankees – seem to have the calls go their way a lot of the time.  Super lucky, I guess.

Luis writes: “I love to read silver and golden age comics i have a vast collection that dates as far back as: Action comic #77 (1944) most of my comics are from the 50′s,60′s early 70′s.”

Answer: Impressive.  Most of my comics date back to the early 70’s, but my complete Avengers collection dates all the way back to the first issue, published in 1963.

Randomness writes: “Through no fault of his own he has to help capture loose souls that invade peoples(With an emptiness in their hearts) bodies, by basically helping them get over whats affecting them(And with help of Elsie who is a demon who captures said loose souls), and as he is utterly obsessed with visual novels he views life in such a manner, and sees people he helps as ‘conquests’. Keima isn’t a jerk or anything(Well he doesn’t intend to be), just very awkward. The show is quite awesome actually.”

Answer: Hmmm.  Intriguing.  Sounds like it could make a great live action television series.  I’ll have to check it out.

Tam Dixon writes: ““Lilyhammer” has a season 2 on Netflix! Has anyone seen the first season? Very funny show!”

Answer: Hmmm.  I’ve heard mixed reviews.  Worth watching?  I do need some viewing material for the five and a half hour flight to Montreal.

Sylvia writes: “One home had a very odd location for a Jacuzzi tub – in the Master Bedroom and not in an enclosed area but rather on one side of the room. Bed was on the other, etc. The weird thing is the “real” bathroom was a smallish room with PINK tub, PINK toilet, PINK basin and couple other pink things….looked terrible.
Then the other room with the Jacuzzi tub that looked very modern and nice…but in the bedroom.”

Answer: There’s no accounting for taste.  I remember visiting a listing in Montreal many years ago.  The owner was very excited as he took us on the tour, saving the best for last: a basement with shag-carpeted walls!

dasndanger writes: “All in all it was a good dream, though it does remind me that I desperately need to reorganize my kitchen.”

Answer: And reconsider your late-night snacking.

18 thoughts on “December 18, 2013: News of note! And a mailbag!

  1. “From the ever-informative gang at 5 Movies Based on True Stories (with Depressing Epilogues)” They forgot one – “Titanic” – the boat sank.

  2. @Tam Dixon: ““Lilyhammer” has a season 2 on Netflix! Has anyone seen the first season? Very funny show!”

    Um – isn’t that the place where they held the Olympics one year? 😉

  3. A Joey – It’s not the late night snacking. Ever since going gluten-free I am sleeping much deeper and for longer periods of time (until I gotta pee! 😛 ). As a result, I am having more – and more vivid – dreams. Before going gluten-free the only dreams I would remember were those just before I woke up in the morning, and nightmares. I don’t have nearly as many nightmares now.

    RE: Invictus and SA rugby – I thought it was obvious during the movie that the team wasn’t an easy sell on the whole unity thing. And anyone familiar with rugby in SA knows that change didn’t – and couldn’t – come overnight. Granted, I’ve watched documentaries on it before, so I know a bit more than average movie goers. The movie was never about the reformation of South African rugby, but about the reformation of the attitudes of the South African people – black and white. Mandela wisely saw that disbanding the team (a symbol of white supremacy to black South Africans) would have created more division in the country, so instead he used the team as an opportunity to bring the country together in one united goal – to win the World Cup. Winning never meant that suddenly old prejudices had miraculously disappeared – this was just one of the stepping stones to making a more unified country. Unless you grew up in South Africa you cannot understand how strong the impact was on the mentality of the country when Mandela donned the Springboks jersey – once a symbol of apartheid – in a major display of racial reconciliation. Not even I can grasp that, though I understand it was an immense, albeit silent, statement to make.

    And the rugby? Well, in the process of using rugby to bring the two sides together it opened the way for black South Africans to become part of a sport that was once nearly inaccessible to them. And though they lost the World Cup in ’99 and ’03, they did win it again in ’07, and are currently ranked 2nd in the world of rugby, just behind New Zealand.

    And Cracked needs to do some fact-checking – they’re relying on information a decade old, much of which has long been resolved. Cronje, who refused to room with a colored player, was dismissed from the team. And while Chester Williams did go through some racial rough patches, he was later considered as a candidate to be the head coach of the Springboks (but Peter de Villiers – also black – was chosen instead). From 2001-2003 he was coach of the SA Sevens team (rugby with 7 a side instead of 15), and had other coaching duties in SA rugby over the years. I wouldn’t call that a bad ending to a story.

    The team is more integrated now, and though there may be some lingering prejudices, I would think that they’re not much different than those seen in any sport, in any country, even here in the States. While the problems in SA are far from over, to suggest that Invictus had a depressing epilogue is a bit much, even for Cracked.

    Boy, you’d think I was defending Todd, or something. 😛


  4. RE: Best and Worst movies – Though I’ve only seen one (The Lone Ranger) – and liked it – I would think the list is fairly accurate. I might catch a few of the good ones down the road (Prisoners, Wolf, 12 Years), but no big rush. I will be picking up the soundtrack for Inside Llewyn Davis however, the music sounds wonderful!

    Baking fails – I lol’d – literally, out loud – over the reindeer and strawberry santas! LOL!


  5. Rebooting Gilligan’s Island? Michael Cera as Gilligan? This is not going to end well.

    How many reboots have failed recently? Lone Ranger (ruined), Superman (an also ran), Get Smart (a pale reflection), The Day the Earth Stood Still (most underwhelming dude), Land of the Lost (one long SNL skit) and 21 Jump Street (really? We needed this?).

    One very arguable exception might be Mission Impossible. But the only reason the MI reboot mostly worked is because they made it more about the method, and less about trying to exactly match the original formula (although, to tell the truth, by the last one I was getting a little tired of the whole “mole with a double/triple cross” storyline).

    They tried the same thing with Get Smart, but I think it failed with Ann Hathaway as 99. She just didn’t pull it off and seemed to have zero chemistry with Steve Carell’s Maxwell Smart.

    And now I’m just scared of what they’ll do to poor old Gilligan.

    Can’t we just have some original (to the big or little screen) storylines, like Dark Matter?

  6. Oh, and thanks for the Bourbon article. It cleared up a lot of questions.

    Taste-wise, my dad was a Jim Bean man, while I tend to like JD’s. After reading this though, I might try to hunt down a bottle of W. L. Weller.

  7. We are on the second season of Lillyhammer and have been 😆 our way through it. Of course, you have a more refined viewing habits than we do. Hope you like it.

    I’m at my mom’s now. With only one half way functioning bathroom for 5-7 people, I miss my house! My mom has internet now so that makes it possible for spoiled people (like myself) to endure such rustic conditions. 😉 We (my 18 yr old is with me) are leaving tomorrow and having Christmas at home. I’m planning on long hot showers!

    Have a great time at your Mom’s!

  8. I have the graduated star cookie cutters to make a Christmas tree, and have made a few beautiful edible trees. Pro-tip: if you put cute little candles on them, do NOT light the candles. Sugar frosting goes up in flames with a roar, very impressive effect. My Japanese neighbor’s family was horrified, and I very nearly burned their house down. Eeep, gomen.

  9. Penfighter, there are international screenwriting fellowships/grants that you can apply for. If live in the UK you can submit directly to the BBC’s Writers Room. Research screenwriting associations and sign up for their mailing list.

    Read the Screenwriters Bible; its a manual that shows you how to format a screenplay and breaks down all the terminology,

    Take a screenwriting class; it’s like jumping into a volcano, only more painful, but it’s helpful to get used to criticism and notes.

    MovieBytes’s newsletter will send you listings of upcoming screenwriting contests for free.

  10. I was curious – when you are rewatching Stargate episodes, do you use the regular retail DVD sets or do you have something better that show producers get?

  11. Oh good, we’re going to your Mom’s house! I always enjoy my (your) visits! Who’s got the babies this time?

  12. I don’t know what Avenger’s #1 goes for but i did see Avenger’s #4 graded 9.4 going for $8,000.00

  13. I have not been able to find an Avenger”s #1. Joe you say you have one HOLD IT!!!!!!

  14. It might be quite difficult to adapt, certainly because Keima likes Visual Novels/Dating sims and they’re incredibly niche outside of Japan, certainly if anyone tried they would have to remove the niche and perhaps have him showing more of an interest in books/computer games. It could be done sure but really to appeal to a wide audience you’d probably have to be brutal on what gets cut.

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