The Cotton Club (1984) / Z-View

The Cotton Club (1984)

Director:  Francis Ford Coppola

Screenplay: William Kennedy & Francis Ford Coppola

Stars:  Richard Gere, Gregory Hines, Diane Lane, Bob Hoskins, James Remar, Nicholas Cage, Fred Gwynne, Lawrence Fishburne, John P. Ryan, Tom Waits, Jennifer Grey, Ed O’Ross, Woody Strode and James Russo.

The Pitch: “Let’s make an event movie based on famous gangsters with dancing!”

Tagline: “Welcome to The Cotton Club. Where Crime Lords rub elbows with the rich and famous. Where deals are made, lives are traded. And the legends of jazz light up the night.”

 

The Overview:  Beware of Spoilers…

It is still hard for me to believe I don’t like this movie better than I do.  Look at the director (Coppola!), the cast (too many to list) and the subject matter.  How can this not rate higher?  Perhaps the narrative is too all over the place…

There’s the young musician [Gere] who inadvertently saves a gangster [Remar] and ends up in a romantic triangle with the gangster’s girl [Lane].

There’s the African-American brothers who want to make it as a dance team but end up feuding and split up.

There’s the two gangs which are almost ready to go to war.

There’s the Cotton Club – the place owned by whites, but the talent is black and where a lot of the action happens.

There’s the… well, I could go on, but I think you get the idea.  The music is fine.  The dance numbers [especially by the Hines brothers] are fun.  It’s also a kick to identify the real historical figures portrayed in the film.  Still, the movie itself falls short.

Rating:

Twilight Zone: “A Kind of Stopwatch” [Season 5, Episode 4] / Z-View

Twilight Zone: “A Kind of Stopwatch[Season 5, Episode 4]
Original Air Date: October 18, 1963

Director: John Rich
Writer: Rod Serling from a story by Michael D. Rosenthal

Starring: Richard Erdman, Herbie Faye and Leon Belasco.

The Overview: Beware of Spoilers…

A man gets a stopwatch that freezes time and everyone and everything in the world around him.  He decides to rob a bank by stopping time and just walking away with the money.  What could go wrong?

Twilight Zone: “Printer’s Devil” [Season 4, Episode 9] / Z-View

Twilight Zone: “Printer’s Devil[Season 4, Episode 9]
Original Air Date: February 28, 1963

Director: Ralph Senensky
Writer: Charles Beaumont

Starring: Robert Sterling, Pat Crowley and Burgess Meredith

The Overview: Beware of Spoilers…

Douglas Winter sells his soul to the devil in order to save his dying business only to find that he may have lost much more than his soul…

Twilight Zone: “The Last Rites of Jeff Myrtlebank” [Season 3, Episode 23] / Z-View

Twilight Zone: “The Last Rites of Jeff Myrtlebank[Season 3, Episode 23]
Original Air Date: February 23, 1962

Director: Montgomery Pittman

Writer: Montgomery Pittman

Starring: James Best, Sherry Jackson, Edgar Buchanan and Dub Taylor.


The Overview: Beware of Spoilers…

When Jeff Myrtlebank rises from his coffin the town folk are at first frightened but fear turns to joy at having Jeff back… that is until they notice that he is not quite the same…

Give Thanks and Say, “You’re Welcome!”

Today is Thanksgiving and many of us will come together with family and friends to pause and give thanks for what we have and perhaps what we’ve been sparedCharles Dickens may have said it best…

  • “Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every man has many–not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.”

Of course not everyone gives thanks.  The Sexy Pilgrim doesn’t. Instead he says, “You’re welcome.”

I hope that you and yours have one of the best Thanksgiving Days ever. Count your blessings, eat too much turkey, ignore that family member who irritates you, make big plans, eat too much pie, doze in front of the tube, have a bit more turkey, and remember to watch a bit of the parade and some football!

15 Fun Facts About “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”

Roger Cormier and Mental_Floss present 15 Fun Facts About Ferris Bueller’s Day Off Here are three of my favorites…

1. ANTHONY MICHAEL HALL BELIEVES THAT JOHN HUGHES WANTED HIM TO PLAY FERRIS.

Hall told Vanity Fair that his relationship with the director ended rather abruptly following their work together on Weird Science, and after Hall had begun working with other directors. But he believed that Hughes wrote the roles of Duckie in Pretty in Pink and Ferris Bueller for him. For his part, Hughes said Broderick was the actor he had in mind when writing the screenplay. Casting directors Janet Hirshenson and Jane Jenkins only seriously considered one other actor for the part: John Cusack.

6. LOVE WAS IN THE AIR.

Matthew Broderick and Jennifer Grey (who played Jeanie, Ferris’ sister) met and got engaged just before the movie’s release. Cindy Pickett and Lyman Ward, who played Ferris’ parents, met on the set of the movie and eventually got married and had two children.

7. BEN STEIN WAS INITIALLY SUPPOSED TO DO HIS LECTURE OFF-CAMERA.

The student extras laughed so hard that Hughes decided to put Stein in front of the camera for his speech on supply-side economics. Stein himself picked the topic after Hughes asked him to speak about something he knew a lot about. Before he became a familiar movie and television presence, Stein—who is also a lawyer—was a speechwriter for Presidents Nixon and Ford.

17 Action-Packed Facts About “Crimson Tide”


Roger Cormier 
and Mental_Floss present 17 Action-Packed Facts About Crimson Tide Here are three are my favorites…

2. QUENTIN TARANTINO WAS AN UNCREDITED WRITER.

Though Michael Schiffer earned the film’s sole screenplay credit (based on a story by Schiffer and Richard P. Henrick), Tarantino contributed some words to the script as well. He wrote the scene in which members of the crew talked about their favorite submarine movies. Tarantino and Tony Scott had worked together two years earlier, when Scott directed Tarantino’s script for True Romance.

3. DENZEL WASHINGTON CONFRONTED TARANTINO ON THE SET.

Washington was very open with his anger about Tarantino’s use of racial slurs. The Pulp Fiction writer-director’s request that they have their argument privately was reportedly denied by Denzel. In a 2012 interview with GQ, Washington said that he has since apologized to Tarantino, and pointed out that his own daughter had just acted in Tarantino’s Django Unchained.

14. HACKMAN ACCIDENTALLY PUNCHED WASHINGTON.

Though Hackman insisted to Larry King that it was an accident, he said it made things tense.

The Mercenary Sea #8 by Symons and Reynolds

The Mercenary Sea is an on-going series created by Kel Symons & Matthew Reynolds published by Image.

Writer: Kel Symons

Art and Colors: Matthew Reynolds

Letterer: Pat Brosseau

“ON TREASURE ISLAND” The second of a two-part story: On the hunt for Koji Ra, Jack and the crew of the Venture explore ancient ruins on a deserted island and run into an old adversary. This issue also includes a bonus short story just in time for Christmas.

*** Beware – spoilers may be found below *** The Good

  • Matthew Reynolds kicks things off with another impressive cover.
  • Kel Symons sets the table with a race against time [an unstable volcano about to blow] and an old adversary hunting for the same treasure.
  • Regular readers will be surprised by this one: I like the blur effect on page 6, panel 3.
  • The splash on page 11.
  • “Can we go again?”
  • The bonus Christmas story!

The Bad:

  • “The room is flooding!”
  • “There’s too much water pressure.”
  • “No good, Skipper.  No way out up here.”

The Ugly:

  • The centipede’s path.

The Mercenary Sea #8 should appeal to all who old time action and adventure.

Rating: 4 out of 5

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