Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Media: They tried to destroy the parade and they failed

You better watch out.  When One Million Moms for Bigotry issue marching orders they mean business and . . . no one listens to them.


It's not like the idiots of Moms For Bigotry would have known that if they hadn't read it.  Second, they were not doing Ted Talks.  Third, they were performers from Broadway plays who would be on with other members of the cast singing and dancing.

This was too much for the bigots.  They demanded a boycott -- and they didn't just want their tiny membership to watch something else, they wanted everyone in the country to watch something else.

The hate merchants power has peaked.  It only took government officials asking certain individuals about these mythical protests to send the big money hidden trash running.  They can't manipulate the stock market again and get away with it.  That was made clear to them by US officials -- it's a shame that you have financial reporters at various media outlets and they didn't figure out what was going on and it's a bigger shame that even when the government 'reminded' certain people of the law, the financial reporters still couldn't find the story.

But their power has peaked.


In part, this happens with most groups.  Eventually, the average person sounds like Mitch and Cam from MODERN FAMILY ("Patriot Games," season six, episode 22, written by Vali Chandrasekara) and state that they don't have the time to follow every issue and turn out for every protest.  It also happens when a pack of liars get exposed for what they really are: Hate merchants.  The United States, as a whole, does not support the restriction of freedoms.  It was only a matter of time before these bigots overplayed their hands.

And we're now at that moment.

Which is how Macy's got great ratings this year.

Christmas came early for NBC: The network’s annual telecast of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade delivered the biggest ratings ever.

The 97th annual parade was seen by 28.5 million viewers and earned a hefty 7.2 rating in the 18-49 age demo. Both numbers are up 6 percent from last year’s parade. It was also the highest-rated entertainment program of the year in both categories across all of broadcast and cable.

The record is particularly impressive at a time when even major live events have witnessed ratings erosion in recent years.

It is very impressive.  Good for Macy's and NBC.

It's also a lesson, a good one, that businesses need to heed.  Moms for Bigotry and A Million Hateful Moms bloviate and bellyache but they don't have the power you think they have.  Bud Light has the excuse that they were early in the cycle and didn't know better.  But, that said, there's never an excuse to attack the influencer you sought out.  It's the treatment of Dylan Mulvaney that's harmed Bud Light more than anything else.  Had they not attacked her and shamed her and disowned her, the left and those in the middle might have not only continued to purchase Bud Light but might have purchased even more because Dylan was under attack.

It happened with the Natalie Maines and the Chicks.  They were pulled off the radio but they had a hell of a week in sales then Bully Boy Bush and others piled up on them in 2003.

Idiots like Speaker of the House Mike Johnson may say that the United States is "irredeemable" due to the fact that 1/4 of high school students label themselves as LGBTQ+ but grasp that the 1/4 of students have brothers and sisters, parents and grandparents, aunts and uncles, friends and neighbors.  That's a lot of people who support them.  Who knows, if Mike's really the closet case he seems (and the one people whisper about), he might even support them privately.

The hate merchants are very vocal, they're just not very big in number.

By being vocal and by being an online 'presence,' they've intimidated a lot of people.

Good for Macy's for refusing to be intimidated.

Macy's had Cher, Beyonce, Brandy, En Vogue and others this year and that helped the ratings but reality also helped the ratings.  They were also helped by the fact that people who actually watch -- apparently the bigots never had -- know that this is a broadcast that lasts over 3 hours  and has around 20 name performers, around 13 marching bands, clowns, groups, hosts, police officers and, yes, balloons.  

Most of the threats come from idiots who never know what they're talking about or what they're threatening to boycott.


Another thing worth noting.  Considering the hate merchants who are usually extremely distasteful Republicans -- and Republicans come lately like Naomi Wolf -- it's worth pondering the way these fools interact -- especially in Congress.  

We've learned of two recent verbal fights among grown men that nearly spilled over into physical fights.  Some might use that topic to ponder impulse control.  Us?  We're just wondering why these men supposedly threatening one another, sound like so much gay porn.

Earlier this month it was Angry Bear Senator Markwayne Mullin threating Sean O'Brien (Teamsters president) in the middle of a Senate committee hearing.   His come on lines included, "You know where to find me."  Doesn't beat Mae West's "come on up and see me sometime"; however, she left it at that.  Markwayne pressed on, "If you want to run your mouth, we can be two consenting adults."  Two consenting adults, as most people know (even in Oklahoma) refers to sex.  Need the MERRIAM-WEBSTER definition?  "A person who is legally considered old enough to have sex: an adult who has consented to have sex."  Get it?  Either Markwayne struggles with the English language or he was coming on to O'Brien.  The flirty Markwayne continued, "We can finish it here.  You want to do it now?  Well, stand your butt up then."  

As Heather Duke says in HEATHERS, "Ah, young love."

Later, apparently confirming rumors that Markwayne is into S&M, he spoking longingly of being able to administer a caning.  And he spoke of being willing to bite O'Brien.  On the neck?  On the nipple?  America wants to know, Markwayne.  We all know, thanks to former US House Rep David Trott, that you're a pig, a little piggie since Trott revealed that, in 2015, you were all up in people's space:

We called up the former congressman, who told us about an AIPAC-sponsored trip to Israel in August 2015 that he remembered about 40 members attending, plus many spouses. Among those spouses was his wife, KATHLEEN “KAPPY” TROTT.

At this point, he handed the phone over to Kappy. She told us about the flight to Israel, which was hampered by layovers and delays. Though they were promised a quick shower in the hotel upon arriving, that schedule was revised on the fly: Instead, they’d immediately board buses to see an Iron Dome installation and a kibbutz.

“We were in the clothes we’d been wearing for like 24 hours,” Kappy says. “We get on this bus, and it’s a couple-hour bus ride and people were kind of leaning on their spouse’s shoulder and falling asleep. And this idiot starts walking up and down the bus with his camera and anyone who fell asleep, he would put his finger in their nose and take a picture.”

“I said [to myself, ‘If] that idiot comes near me when I fall asleep, I’m going to punch him,’” Kappy told us. “And I said to Dave: ‘This is a U.S. congressman?’”

That congressman? Markwayne Mullin.

“Some people were mad, and some people were laughing. There were a couple of women who were mad,” Kappy said. “You’re trying to fall asleep, somebody you don’t know has his finger … It was just middle school. And we were in Israel, and we’re going to go see the Iron Dome and go to a kibbutz. Just didn’t seem appropriate.”

It might be time for people to start setting personal boundaries with Sex Pig Markwayne.

Which brings us to the disgusting Ron DeSantis, alleged governor of Florida when not flitting around the country.  A meeting of his  backers played out like towel wearing boys skipping out on Bathhouse Bette Midler's "Hello In There" performance to rush straight to the baths.  Once there, you don't have to imagine because it played out right in front of Ron's eyes.

Former college football player Scott Wagner was getting on consultant Jeff Roe's nerves.  Jeff declared, "You have a stick up your ass." This lead to Scotty standing up and suggesting, "Why don't you come over here and get it?"  We like to imagine that Scotty then turned his back on Jeff and shook his ass back and forth at Jeff.  But what we do know is that two board members had to grab Scotty to get him to sit back down.

Again, the question isn't why are these GOP-ers so violent, it's why do they sound like bad gay porn when they're making 'threats'?

A note to our readers

Hey --

Tuesday  night.

Let's thank all who participated this edition which includes Dallas and the following:

The Third Estate Sunday Review's Jim, Dona, Ty, Jess and Ava,
Rebecca of Sex and Politics and Screeds and Attitude,
Betty of Thomas Friedman Is a Great Man,
C.I. of The Common Ills and The Third Estate Sunday Review,
Kat of Kat's Korner (of The Common Ills),
Mike of Mikey Likes It!,
Elaine of Like Maria Said Paz),
Cedric of Cedric's Big Mix,
Ruth of Ruth's Report,
Wally of The Daily Jot,
Trina of Trina's Kitchen, Marcia of SICKOFITRDLZ,
Stan of Oh Boy It Never Ends,
Isaiah of The World Today Just Nuts,
and Ann of Ann's Mega Dub.

And what did we come up with? 

Ava and C.I. report on the wasted efforts of Moms For Bigotry and the other hate merchants.


This took hours.  And when we thought we were done?  Ava asks, "What illustration are we going to use?"  Finally, I thought of the collage we'd done years ago.  Ava said, "Good idea but you do know we have some of the movies on the list, we have screen shots."  Oh.  That took a lot of time.  But it does look better than it did.


C.I. dictated this for Monday's snapshot but had to pull it for space and offered it to us to round out the edition.

Community coverage of 2023 deaths.



-- Jim, Dona, Ty, Jess, Ava and C.I.

The funniest movies from the last 100 years

 movie montage

This was an 'easy' piece, we just knew.  We were warned by some (Ann, Ava and C.I.) that what seemed simple would take forever.  And it did.

For each year we selected one film with a few exceptions.  Some years required two.  One year required three.  We used this sparingly, by the way.

Don't see SEX, LIES & VIDEOTAPE on the list?  A hilarious film.  But not the funniest of its years.  Some years we really didn't have to think too hard because there weren't that many funny ones. 

One film probably will stand out because it bombed.  And it was reshot and reworked to death.  But if you watch it, you can see what it should have been -- especially if you pay attention to the lead blond woman in the ensemble cast.  That year wasn't a strong one for comedy.  But we do think this film has a lot of promise onscreen even as it is currently.  Maybe instead of re-editing THE WAY WE WERE, Barbra Streisand could take a look at that 2001 film?

Some films have a single sentence after them, some have several sentences.  After we finally narrowed down every title on this list, we then broke up into small groups to write about each film.  Some people felt a single sentence sufficed.  So that's what we've got.  We hope you enjoy the list.   We encourage you to make your own.  


Mae West's 1-2 punch.


Carole Lombard and director Howard Hawks show how comedy is done.


Carole Lombard continues to demonstrate how comedy is done.


A Charlie Chaplin classic.


Marx Brothers classic.


Howard Hawks directs Katharine Hepburn and Cary Grant as hilarity ensues.



With a script co-written by Billy Wilder, even Greta Garbo could garner laughs.


Katharine Hepburn reteams with Cary Grant (their fourth teaming) and in this unforgettable comedy. 


Preston Struges directs Barbara Stanwyck and Henry Fonda in this laugh classic.  1941 was Stanwyck's year -- she reteamed with Fonda for the comedy YOU BELONG WITH ME, teamed with Gary Cooper for MEET JOHN DOE and again with Cooper for the comedy classic BALL OF FIRE (directed by Howard Hawks with a script by Billy Wilder and Charles Brackett).



Ernst Lubitsch directs Carole Lombard in her final film -- released after she had passed away.  One of the screen's great comic actors, along with TO BE OR NOT TO BE, TWENTIETH CENTURY and HANDS ACROSS THE TABLE, her other comedy classics include NOTHING SACRED, MY MAN GODFREY,  THE PRINCESS COMES ACROSS, LOVE BEFORE BREAKFAST, TRUE CONFESSION, FOOL FOR SCANDAL and Alfred Hitchcock's MR. & MRS. SMITH.



Not a strong year for comedy but this one starring Bob Hope and Dorothy Lamour stands out.


Frank Capra directs Cary Grant in this legendary comedy and PLANE DAFFY is one of the first animated comedy classics -- a short film starring Daffy Duck.



Comedy classics are hard enough but when you're trying to make a really funny Christmas film, that's even harder.  Barbara Stanwyck and company deliver.


A Bob Hope comedy classic.



The remake is cloying.  The original is equal parts cynicism and hope and pulls you in while delivering laughs.



The tenth film directed by Preston Sturges and among his classic comedies which also includes THE LADY EVE, SULLIVAN'S TRAVELS, THE PALM BEACH STORY, THE MIRACLE OF MORGAN's CREEK and HAIL THE CONQUERING HERO.


Judy Garland and Van Johnson star in this musical comedy.  


A drama, yes, also a very funny one.  Thelma Ritter and Marilyn Monroe provide many laughs but Bette Davis detonates every good line she's given.



Another short, animated film revolving around Daffy Duck.



Another Howard Hawks directed comedy classic.  The cast includes Marilyn Monroe and Ginger Rogers with Cary Grant in the lead.  He repeatedly delivered in comedic roles.  Already on the list: BRINGING UP BABY, SHE DONE HIM WRONG, THE PHILADELPHIA STORY, ARSENIC AND OLD LACE and I'M NO ANGEL. His other comedic high points include: SYLVIA SCARLET, TOPPER, THE AWFUL TRUTH, HOLIDAY, HIS GIRL FRIDAY, MY FAVORITE WIFE, I WAS A MALE WAR BRIDE, INDISCREET, THAT TOUCH OF MINK and OPERATION PETTICOAT.


Another classic comedy directed by Howard Hawks.  Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell star and musical numbers include "Diamonds Are A Girl's Best Friend" and "When Love Goes Wrong."  A huge hit comedy in 1953 and one of two for Marilyn (the other being HOW TO MARRY A MILLIONAIRE).



In the fifties, Judy Holliday carved out a comedic career with films like this.  Also see BORN YESTERDAY, ADAM'S RIB, THE MARRYING KIND, PHFFT, THE SOLID GOLD CADDILAC, FULL OF LIFE and 1960's BELLS ARE RINGING.  IT COULD HAPPEN TO YOU is directed by Judy's frequent director George Cukor (he directed four of her films).


Marilyn Monroe was nominated for a BAFTA for this film -- her comedy led to a lot of ticket sales in the US but little admiration for her acting talent.



The 15th film Martin & Lewis made together -- second to last one before Dean Martin went one way and Jerry Lewis went the other.


A blackmailer goes after Peter Sellers and others in this British comedy.  It's laugh-out-loud funny.


Kim Novak stars as a witch who falls in love (with Jimmy Stewart) much to her shock and that of her family (Jack Lemmon and Elsa Lancaster).



One of the funniest films of all time.  Billy Wilder directs Marilyn Monroe, Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis.  Marilyn won a Golden Globe for her performance. Billy and I.L. Diamond wrote one of the funniest scripts of the 20th century.



Billy Wilder directs Jack Lemmon, Shirley MacLaine and Fred McMurray in this comedy.  Billy directed many great comedies prior to this -- his finest being SOME LIKE IT HOT -- but after this?  His only film that really provides laughs is when he reteamed with Lemmon and MacLaine for IRMA LA DUCE.


This comedy has been remade, sequalized and endlessly referenced in other films and in episodes of TV shows. 


Peter Sellers is torn between two jobs and two women.


Producer Stanley Kramer made a lot of films, with this comedy classic, he also directed one.


Peter Sellers again.  Like legendary performers who came before -- Carole Lombard, Bob Hope and Marilyn Monroe -- Peter was a genius when it came to getting audiences to laugh.


Jane Fonda had done comedy before and would do it after but CAT BALLOU is where she first demonstrated her comedic timing and her willingness to go 100% all out for a laugh and Lee Marvin won the Academy Award for this film.


Zero Mostel and Phil Silvers are among the stand outs in this Richard Lester film.


Mel Brooks created his first comedy classic film in the same year as other strong comedies were released (such as BAREFOOT IN THE PARK).


Peter Ustinov,  Maggie Smith, Bob Newhart star in this heist comedy.



Great comedic actors aren't as common as studios would hope.  This film announced the emergence of one of the few: Goldie Hawn.  Brenda Vaccaro played the role on Broadway and did get laughs and applause.  She did not, however, walk away with the play.  She also was not seen as sympathetic.  You got that the man she was having an affair with was using her and you understood it because she was using him too.  Goldie Hawn brought laughs and vulnerability to the role -- a human Tweety Bird.  Goldie won the Academy Award for this performance.


1970 M*A*S*H*

Robert Altman directed this classic and if you've only seen the pale copy that was the CBS sitcom, make a point to sit through this film.



Hal Ashby's classic comedy starring Ruth Gordon and Bud Curt with a great soundtrack from Cat Stevens/Yusuf ties with Elaine May's A NEW LEAF which had Walter Matthau at his most original acting opposite May with an inspired cast including Doris Roberts and ties with Woody Allen's BANANAS which is Woody's first true comedy classic.  (TAKE THE MONEY AND RUN is funny, it's not at the level of BANANAS, however.)


Peter Bogdanovich directed Barbra Streisand in the funniest film she ever made.  First-rate work all around including performances from Madeline Kahn, Ryan O'Neal and Austin Pendleton.  It's one belly laugh after another.



This time Woody directs a new co-star: Diane Keaton.  It's an inspired pairing, they have an easy and natural chemistry.  He shares the spotlight with her and she runs with it, especially when she's impersonating Brando in A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE or when she's spouting poetry or joining Woody to do surgery on the nose of the leader.  An inspired sci-fi comedy.


When he's not doing skits but actually writing scenes, Mel Brooks is capable of so much as he demonstrates with this film and a cast that includes Gene Wilder, Cloris Leachman, Madeline Kahn, Marty Feldman, Teri Garr and Gene Hackman and cinematographer Gerald Hirschfeld deserves to be singled out for praise.




Back to Woody.  He and Diane Keaton are in Russia this go round and possibly even more hysterical as they debate philosophy and plot to kill Napoleon.  Hal Ashby also pops back on the list with SHAMPOO -- a classic seventies film about the end of the sixties.  Warren Beatty, Julie Christie and Goldie Hawn star.  Julie Christie has one of the most memorable lines at a dinner when she explains what she wants but  Hawn may walk away with the film when she asks Warren's character for the truth about his cheating.


Faye Dunaway won the Academy Award for playing the programming chief willing to do anything for ratings including giving a terrorist group their own weekly TV show or backing killing someone on live TV.  William Holden's career was running on fumes at that point and his acting reflects it (and it perfect the role he plays).


Diane Keaton and Woody continue their comedy duo streak, Diane won the Academy Award for Best Actress while Woody won Academy Awards for best script (co-writer) and Best Director.  It's a comedy classic with the school children revealing what happened to them when they became adults ("I'm into leather") and Diane's nightmare driving in NYC.


Herbert Ross directs this screen adaptation of a Neil Simon play.  The performances provide the laughter.  Jane Fonda delivers most strongly in the unsympathetic role of Hannah.  Alan Alda gives her very little to work with as her screen partner but she still detonates every one-liner Simon's provided.  Maggie Smith won an Academy Award for her portrayal of an actress nominated for an Academy Award (she won in real life but lost onscreen).  Michael Caine, Elaine May, Richard Pryor, Walter Matthau and Bill Cosby round out the cast.


Hal Ashby directs another film classic -- this time starring Peter Seller and Shirley MacLaine.


Producing for the first time, Goldie Hawn scores big with this film.  A great cast -- Goldie, Eileen Brennan, Hal Williams, Mary Kay Place, Craig T. Nelson, Armand Assante, and Albert Brooks.After her (second) husband dies on their wedding night (while they're having sex), Judy Benjamin decides to join the military.  


What if no one ever cared what you thought until you were on TV?  Would you be a Kardashian?  No, you'd be Pat Kramer -- Lily Tomlin's character in this film where out of control corporate greed shrinks us all in one way or another.  The strong cast includes Charles Grodin and Henry Gibson.  However, the person who almost steals the film from Lily's Pat Kramer is . . . Judith Beasley.  Lily brings her beloved consumer advocate to this film and she's hilarious at a neighborhood meeting confronting a woman who refuses to pick up after her dog and Judith doesn't just call the woman out, she brings the receipts.



 Sidney Pollack directed this comedy about Michael Dorsey (Dustin Hoffman) taking a job on a soap opera to prove he can get hired and to raise money to put on the play his friend Jeff  (Bill Murray) wrote.  Thing is, he had to pretend to be an actress to get hired.  Teri Garr and Jessica Lange provide laughs and Jessica actually goes so deep into her role that this is the film that announces just how powerful she is as an actress.  

1983 ZELIG

Woody Allen returns to giddy highs with this comedy about a man who can blend in anywhere but who hates his doctor's pancakes.  Playing his doctor, Mia Farrow may get her biggest laughs when Woody, under hypnosis, can't stop dragging those awful pancakes.



Woody directs himself and Mia again.  He's a personal manager for clients no one else wants, she's those women she got to know when she was married to Frank Sinatra -- a little too jaded, a little too brassy.  "The bullets go right through" -- might just be the funniest line in a very funny film.


The first masterpiece from director Tim Burton.  


Diane Keaton, Jessica Lange and Sissy Spacek play three sisters in this film adaptation of Beth Henley's Pulitzer Prize winning play.  All three leads get a chance to shine.  Sissy Spacek, as the youngest sister, was nominated for an Academy Award and won a Golden Globe.  Tess Harper should have been nominated for a best supporting Academy Award.  She's great throughout as the awful cousin who Diane Keaton eventually chases out of the house with a broom.  And Jessica Lange plays the middle sister in such a relaxed manner that you grasp how she dropped out of the family for several years.  



Goldie made many great comedies in the 80s (PRIVATE BENJAMIN, PROTOCOL, WILDCATS, SEEMS LIKE OLD TIMES, BEST FRIENDS) but it's this one that took on a life of its own that the reviewers in real time certainly did not anticipate. It's been remade in the years since; however, this one remains the best with cast members like Kurt Russell, Katherine Helmond and Roddy McDowall. "What an ugly wig," The film is filled with with funny lines and Goldie makes all of her lines shine.. 



You won't believe what a perfect comedy team Steve Martin and Michael Caine make until you see this film.




A comedy classic that was misinterpreted by the studios. Rob Reiner can't direct romantic comedies. And Billy Crystal didn't make this film a hit. America embraced and identified with Meg Ryan. And it was Nora Ephron's script and on the set exchanges with Rob that made the film so memorable. Nora would go on to direct the comedy classics SLEEPLESS IN SEATTLE and YOU'VE GOT MAIL. Meg would star in both and also the comedies JOE VERSUS THE VOLCANO, PRELUDE TO A KISS, I.Q., ADDICTED TO LOVE, HANGING UP and KATE & LEOPOLD. 



 Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks team as a couple for the first of three films. Meg plays three different roles.  Some fans of the movie will love the luggage best.  Us?  We like Angelica's poetry "Long ago, the delicate tangles of his hair covered the emptiness of my hand" and her eagerness to share it, "Would you like to hear it again?"  (Yes, there is an episode of NCIS that quotes those lines and many more from the film.)  Strong support from Lloyd Bridges, Ossie Davis, Robert Stack, Amanda Plummer and Abe Vigoda. 


A really good comedy film often goes less appreciated when it's initially released -- sometimes it's even savaged.  But films like DROP DEAD FRED, BRINGING UP BABY, OVERBOARD and JOE VERSUS THE VOLCANO are examples of films whose audience discovers them as the years pass.






If you ever doubted Goldie Hawn's versatility, check out these two comedies. In the first, she steals the film from Bruce Willis and Meryl Streep. Helen and Madeline were 'friends.' Madeline stole Helen's fiancĂ©e. Helen develops mental issues and a weight problem. When she decides to turn her life around, that includes getting back at Madeline. Meryl is Madeline or Meryl is posing as a character named Madeline. Goldie delivers a master class in acting as Helen. The same year, she did Frank Oz's HOUSESITTER after Meg Ryan walked on the role. As a last minute replacement, she could have been off her game. Instead, she created a completely different character. She lies and each lie is about the world she wanted and these lies circle her and circle her and bring her and Steve Martin together when he learns to lie (or wish) the way she does. A great film with wonderful cinematography. And that's just comedy. Goldie's one of the few actresses in the second half of the 20th century to have three films released in one year. She produced the third -- CRISSCROSS -- a drama she stars in. 



Woody Allen and Diane Keaton reteam for this comedy classic. Joining them? Angelica Huston, Alan Alda and, yes, Joy Behr (Joy is very funny). But it's the chemistry between Diane and Woody that really nails down the humor. 


1994 ED WOOD 

Tim Burton directs another comedy classic and, this time, in black and white. Johnny Depp is amazing and leads an amazing cast which includes Bill Murray, Sarah Jessica Parker and Martin Landau who won an Academy Award for his performance. 



Daisy von Scherler Mayer's classic starring Parker Posey.  "I. Don't. Know." and many other classic moments.



David O. Russell's perfect film.  While Ben Stiller plays an annoying sad sack, all around him great performances are being delivered by Lily Tomlin, Mary Tyler Moore, George Segal, Josh Brolin, Tea Leoni and Richard Jenkins.  Russell never made a film as good but he's probably okay with that since groped his niece and got away with it (she filed a complaint, he admitted to it and the police refused to charge him).  Trust the art, not the artist.



PJ Hogan directs this classic that broke every rule and should have reinvented the romantic comedy.  Julia Roberts stars and is assisted expertly by Rupert Everette, Cameron Diaz and Dermot Mulroney. 


No one examines the present like Warren Beatty.  This is a great film.  He should have stuck with contemporary time periods.  He was a co-writer, a producer and a director -- as well as a star -- on this film that provides one great moment after another and gave Halle Berry her first great film role.  Complaint?  "Bitches Are Hustlers Too (I Thought You Knew)" was featured in the film but not on the soundtrack album -- yeah, that's how perfect film is, the only complaint we can make is about the soundtrack album that got released.




Franco Zeffirelli turned in a late in life classic when he directed this film.   The film is set in Italy and starts with WWII looming.  A group of women's lives are changed.  That's interesting enough now let's note the actresses playing the women.  Maggie Smith (who won another BAFTA for this film), Lily Tomlin, Judi Dench, Joan Plowright and Cher.  All are wonderful in the film and Cher reminds you just how made for the movies she is.  



Woody Allen teams with Tracey Ullman in this story about a planned robbery that gets interrupted by cookie success.  Woody and Tracey deliver as do Elaine May and Hugh Grant.



This film needed a Woody Allen or Neil LaBute or Nora Ephron.  There were too many changes, too many rewrites, too many reshoots.  It was attacked before release.  But it's got many moments that work.  Warren Beatty and Diane Keaton reteam (REDS) and the chemistry is still there.  Goldie Hawn?  One thing that could have been done is put more of her in it.  None of her scenes are compromised.  She knew who Mona was and played the character reliably in every scene she shot.  Rewrites harmed Diane because should Ellie stay with her cheating husband Porter?  Maybe.  Maybe not.  But various writers could never figure that out or how to sell it to the audience.  The cast is there doing their job, it's a shame that there was an adult behind the camera or in the studio to say, "This is the story we're going with and we're not changing another thing."  Strong performances in the film include Nastassia Kinski, Andie McDowell and Charlton Heston.



Sandra Bullock, one of the very few actresses who  could carry a romantic comedy (the other two: Meg Ryan and Julia Roberts) teamed with one of the best actors in the genre (Hugh Grant) to make this film which veers a little to the darker side than some might expect.  Well worth watching -- something you can't say about NINE MONTHS or MICKEY BLUE EYES.  But, like NOTTING HILL, SMALL TIME CROOKS and ABOUT A BOY, TWO WEEKS NOTICE is actually funny.


Working from her own script, Nancy Meyers directed this film that glides from one laugh to another and features strong performances from Keanu Reeves, Amanda Peet, Frances McDormand and especially Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton.



Some might see it as a guilty pleasure, but if it wasn't funny, it wouldn't continue to be watched and enjoyed.  Keenen Ivory Wayans directs, Marlon and Shawn Wayans star.  And, yes, it's hilarious.









Jennifer Lopez made a lot of romantic comedies.  Pretty much all of them stunk.  We're saying they stunk, not she stunk.  She was in poorly thought out vehicles.  MONSTER-IN-LAW was the exception.  It pitted J-Lo up against a real opponent -- Jane Fonda playing Barbara Walters.  Jane's return to acting sparkled and Wanda Sykes was amazing.  

2006 SCOOP

Woody Allen teams with Scarlett Johansson and Hugh Jackman for this farce.


2007 NORBIT 

The critics hated this film. Did they watch it? This is a non-stop, hilarious comedy. "That's not science." That may be Norbit's funniest line but he has many other good ones. And Eddie's great as the title character but Rasputia (also played by Eddie) walks away with the movie. "Of course I'm wearing bottoms!" Who can forget Rasputia going down the water slide or Rasputia washing the car and singing "Don't you wish your girlfriend was hot like me, don't you wish . . ." 



Paul Rudd's a pessimist and Seann William Scott is a dufus.  Somehow, they end up role models for two boys.  And if you don't believe that hilarity ensues, let's note that the supporting cast includes Jane Lynch, Keegan-Michael Key and Elizabeth Banks.  




Anne Fletcher's to blame or to praise for Ryan Reynolds' film career. Before this film, he was a TV performer struggling to make an impression in film and really failing except for a brief spot in 1999's DICK. After garbage like BUYING THE COW, he got paired with Sandra Bullock for this film and a real film career began. He and Sandra have real chemistry onscreen and they made the romantic comedy work all over again after several years of critics insisting the genre was over. Great performances from the entire cast -- which includes Betty White. 



Family films can be funny -- see the original THAT DARN CAT, THE TROUBLE WITH ANGELS, THE STRONGEST MAN IN THE WORLD, THE COMPUTER WORE TENNIS SHOES, etc. And, sometimes, they can be the funniest of the year. Joining the original PARENT TRAP on our list of classics is TOOTH FAIRY. Dwayne Johnson (The Rock) delivers in this film as a smug jerk so self-involved that he steals a dollar from his girlfriend's daughter -- a dollar from the tooth fairy. He gets sentenced to be a tooth fairy for two weeks. In the process, he learns how to be a dependable adult. 




Was Kristen Wigg overrated? She went on to make 19 disappointing films after BRIDESMAIDS. And, yes, GHOSTBUSTERS was awful. Not because it starred women but because they played girls. Bill Murray can hook as a male Ghostbuster but all the little girls in the crap ass reboot could do was drool over their male receptionist? They infantalized the women and that's why the film sucked. WONDER WOMAN 1984 should have been a hit for her and she certainly tried but there the problem was Cheetah -- the true villain -- became an after thought and not a plot point. Still with the script of BRIDESMAIDS, she did deliver. Yes, Melissa McCarthy almost steals the film, Wendi McLendon-Covey almost steals the show, Jon Hamm owns his brief moments, Rebel Wilson and Matt Lucas are so funny you wish they'd gotten spun off into their own sequel and no one can forget Maya Rudolph dropping to the ground in the middle of the street when nature calls. However, Kristen is not just marking time in this film. She delivers over and over including the scene where she and a customer at the jewelry store go off on one another, including her being drugged on the plane and wondering what kind of a name is "Stove," including everything asked for and then some. No matter how many times you watch this film, you can't stop laughing. 


 2012  21 JUMP STREET 

Despite studios believing otherwise, TV shows don't usually make for good films. Maybe because the teen drama instead goes for laughs, it succeeds? Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill are young cops who have to go undercover and pretend to be high schoolers. Rob Riggle has become the Thelma Ritter of comedy and he constantly and consistently delivers in film after film, in TV show after TV show. Ice Cube, Brie Larson and Dave Franco also provide strong support but it's Channing and Jonah's show and they more than deliver. 2013 THE HEAT A film so funny that not even Michael Rappaport can tank it. Melissa McCartney teams up with Sandra Bullock and every note rings clear. Even a throw away about a cat ends up paying off. Except for Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin, female teams -- even when they're box office -- don't reteam and that's a real shame. (Jane and Lily teamed up for the films 9 TO 5, MOVING ON and 80 FOR BRADY and for the TV series GRACE AND FRANKIE.) 



A film so funny that not even Michael Rappaport can tank it.  Melissa McCartney teams up with Sandra Bullock and every note rings clear.  Even a throw away about a cat ends up paying off.  Except for Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin, female teams -- even when they're box office -- don't reteam and that's a real shame.  (Jane and Lily teamed up for the films 9 TO 5, MOVING ON and 80 FOR BRADY and for the TV series GRACE AND FRANKIE.)




 A summer comedy that really delivered and considering the chemistry between Damon Wayans Jr and Jake Johnson, it's a comedic shame that they haven't been teamed up again. 2015 SPY Paul Feig delivers with this one. Melissa McCarthy is a comedy champ but too often, like Eddie Murphy, she has to work overtime to make something out of a bad script. Paul directed and wrote the screenplay -- a great screenplay. Melissa's also paired with an outstanding cast: Jude Law, Miranda Hart, Allison Janney, Jason Statham and Rose Byrne. 


2015 SPY

Paul Feig delivers with this one.  Melissa McCarthy is a comedy champ but too often, like Eddie Murphy, she has to work overtime to make something out of a bad script.  Paul directed and wrote the screenplay -- a great screenplay.  Melissa's also paired with an outstanding cast: Jude Law, Miranda Hart, Allison Janney, Jason Statham and Rose Byrne.




A true gut buster with classic performances from Adam DeVine, Aubrey Plaza, Zac Efron and Anna Kendrick.  Two d-bags use a destination wedding to try to score and two hustlers pose as sweet innocents to get a trip to Hawaii.



Steven Soderbergh's heist comedy features strong performances from Channing Tatum, Daniel Craig, Hillary Swank and Katie Holmes. 



Boots Riley's dark comedy classic begs the question of why he's not directed another movie? This is funny and a twist over and over that keeps surprising you. 



This would be a good time to note that the hall of comedy legends includes not just Carole Lombard, the Marx Brothers, Marilyn Monroe, Woody Allen, Goldie Hawn, Mel Brooks and Diane Keaton, it also includes Eddie Murphy. 2020 THUNDER FORCE Melissa McCarthy and Octavia Spencer deliver much needed laughs in the heart of the pandemic. We would love a sequel of this film. 



Michelle Pfeiffer lived in Manhattan with her husband and her son.  But her husband died. As the movie starts, she's broke.  She sells everything left and she and her son move to France.  Are they starting a new life or is Michelle wrapping up a chapter in her life?  The strong cast includes Lucas Hedges as her son.  But the film is Michelle and she delivers another strong comedic performance like she did in MARRIED TO THE MOB, SWEET LIBERTY, I COULD NEVER BE YOUR WOMAN and HAIRSPRAY among other films.  This really was the perfect film and the perfect film for its year.




We had long ago given up hope on Kristen Wiig and then she showed up with this film which she co-wrote the script with co-star Annie Mumolo. This comedy finds the two women fired from their long term jobs but determined to have that planned vacation while their vacation spot is the planned site of a lethal mosquito attack. Also carrying laughs in the film are Jamie Dornan, Damon Wayans Jr, Vanessa Bayer, Fortune Feimster, Michael Hitchock and Kawme Patterson. 





2022 BROS 

Nicholas Stoller directed and co-wrote the script (with Billy Eichner). It was the best comedy of the year and the best comedy of the 21st century so far. A laugh riot that was targeted by hate merchants who would use the film to test market how they could lie and amplify a small number of people into a faux massive group. They attacked the film using multiple aliases and creating a negative impression of it. UNIVERSAL didn't do any better. Most US theaters refused to show it in heavy rotation on opening weekend. A Saturday showing of SMILE (horror film released the same weekend) would play seven times at a theater while BROS might play three but more often it was once or twice and shoved into the last two showings of the night. It was the equivalent of putting a disclaimer on the film (think what ABC did to ELLEN during its final season). Sadly, once the attacks started, they came from all over. Idiots impressed with the hideous FIRE ISLAND (the epitome of a cheap, tacky and bad TV movie) felt the need to attack BROS despite having not seen it (that was obvious by their claims that BROS didn't have diverse characters -- BROS has multi-races and had trans character, drag queen characters, non-binary characters, straight characters, gay characters, lesbian characters, bi characters . . .). And, sadly, the attacks didn't end after it left the theaters. A year later, QUEER NEWS TONIGHT chose to put the bitchy in news by attacking the film instead of showing support. This is a great movie. It is hilarious and Billy Eichner and Luke Macfarlane have real chemistry. We are glad, community wide, to have supported this film the weekend it came out and ever since. This is a comedy classic and one of America's best.



It's funny and it's got a lot of funny songs.  Josh Sharp and Aaron Jackson play twins who discover one another later in life and they decide to parent-trap their parents played by Megan Mullally and Nathan Lane.  Megan Thee Stallion and Bowen Yang are also in the movie and that really should be all you need to paint a mental picture of just how hilarious this film is. 


What the community stands for and stands against

C.I. dictated this for Monday's Iraq snapshot but the snapshot was long and she pulled it.  She's tossed it over to us with the hope that we can use it for this edition..  We can and will.

Now let's wind down on another topic.   This website is not my job.  I receive no money for it and planned to end it in 2008.  And that's when I (and my eyes) were much healthier.  The reason I bring that up is if something's causing me problems, it's just not worth it.

I don't mean a political position I take.  If someone's upset that I've called out their favorite politician or that I'm defending the Palestinians or whatever, I don't care.  I won't be intimidated.

But this nonsense of the stuff you're saying?  Honey, I don't owe you a damn thing.  

We're talking about BLACK POWER MEDIA. 

If you're late to the party go read Betty's piece.  Betty shouldn't have had to write that.  No one should have.  And you damn well better believe that garbage wouldn't have been said if Jacquie or Kim had been on the segment.  That was a homophobic segment, let's be very clear.

It's cute that they start the segment full of praise and saying that they wished their could be  a movie released every week about The Civil Rights Movement.  Which quickly turns into RUSTIN is too gay and that love story -- WTF?

Let's stop right there.  As someone in the industry, there are times when  I think people are too stupid to talk about films.  This was one of them.

The love story?  Tom and Bayard do not have a love story.  Shortly after the film begins, Bayard has moved on from Tom.  Then he's focused on the married guy.  Tom continues to carry a torch for Bayard but that feeling is not returned.  No one refers to George (Warren Beatty) and Jill (Goldie Hawn) having a love story in SHAMPOO because George, like Bayard, is a player.

Apparently, the gay lead character -- and two supporting characters -- gave the three BPM men the heebee jeebies.  And the interracial aspect of Tom and Bayard especially bothered Jared (due to his own parentage).  

RUSTIN is a very good movie.  It is not beyond criticism.  

I assumed BPM would touch on those criticisms.  Ava and I reviewed the film in "TV: Courage -- momentary and otherwise"  and we had touched on some of it.  Bayard has been covered several times at THIRD over the years.  The courage, momentary?  That's a reference to the time the film covers.  Bayard became an embarrassment.  Like too many leftists of the old guard, the 70s and 80s were about becoming conservative -- neoconservative.  He began to support the Vietnam War, he was against affirmative action, go down the list.  By the end of his life, he was often called an "Uncle Tom."

That's what I assumed the BPM segment would focus on.  I didn't know it was going to be a soap box for homophobia.

I had just gotten home when I spoke to Betty, I hadn't read what she wrote.  I told her whatever it was, that's fine.  But that I needed to go stream the segment because it was either already up or about to go up -- I usually do a string of videos at lunch, that will post throughout the afternoon and night.  It was up, by less than ten minutes.

I immediately posted something else.  I did not remove it.  I thought about removing it but I've only done that once.  A veteran had written an important piece and we'd quoted from it in the snapshot.  Some active-duty service members were quoted in what he wrote and he'd just found out that they could get in trouble for what they said.  When he let me know that, I edited it out of the already published snapshot.  That's it here.  I don't try to rewrite history, if it's up, it's up.  

So I just posted a new video less than ten minutes after the BPM had gone up.  

I don't have time for you if you're causing me problems.  

I don't have time to watch everything that goes up here.  Rosie O'Donnell will and has gone up here.  Last week's video didn't.  Why? I didn't have time to stream it.  And I don't usually have to worry about that but her sole guest was . . . an Orthodox Jew.  With the assault on Gaza, I'm not just tossing that up.  I love Tavis Smiley's slate of programs.  They haven't gone up since the assault on Gaza because I don't have time to listen to them and they don't identify what they're doing in their title. 

I think that unless the video features Jacquie or Kim, I'm done posting BPM for the near future.  I love Renee Johnston but I don't have time to go through an hour or more to be sure Jared isn't going off on something I would not condone or post in a normal situation.

I don't condone homophobia and he might have thought he and his two buddies were coming off manly but they were coming off pathetic -- in fact, as pathetic as those in real time were when they attacked Bayard for being gay.  Grasp that, it's over fifty years later and Jared was pulling the same disgusting homophobia.

This follows his on air fight with the Ear Doctor over how the Ear Doctor chooses to handle illness.  This follows his attack on Kim over the Andre 3000 album.  And when he finally realized he'd misunderstood her, that statement was all he offered.  He didn't say, "Wow, I'm so sorry I attacked you on air.  I'm so sorry that when you tried to explain, I talked over you and beat you down verbally."  This is becoming a pattern and I don't have time for it.  Someone else might, I don't.  

BURN IT DOWN WITH KIM BROWN will be posted here and I don't feel I have to vet it.  If Jacquie does a new show (SPUTNIK killed her BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY because they didn't like Jacquie's take -- that the Palestinians are an occupied people), that will go up without vetting.  If Jacquie and Kim are on THE REMIX MORNING SHOW, it will go up.  But otherwise not really interested in BPM. 

Again, I'm not paid for this, this isn't my job and I've got a lot more to do with my time.  So if you create problems for me, you're gone, it's that simple.  


2023 passings




These are the deaths community members found worth noting this year.


Lisa Presley -- Elaine noted her passing.

Christine McVie -- Kat covered her passing.


Adam Rich -- Marcia noted his passing.


Jeff Beck -- Kat noted his passing.


Lance Kerwin -- Rebecca noted his passing.

Barrett Strong -- Ruth noted his passing.


Lisa Loring -- Rebecca noted her passing.


Burt Bacharach -- Rebecca noted his passing.


Raquel Welch -- Elaine noted her passing.


Stella Stevens  -- Rebecca noted her passing.


Richard Belzer -- Ruth noted his passing.  


Kevin Alexander Gray -- C.I. notes his passing.


Pat Schroeder -- Kat noted her passing.


Lance Reddick -- Mike notes his passing.  


Darcelle XV -- Elaine notes his passing.


"Mark Russell" -- Ruth notes his passing 


"Elizabeth Hubbard" -- Trina notes her passing.


"Mary Quant and more Peabody nominations" -- Elaine notes a passing.


"Harry Belafonte" -- Kat notes a passing.

Gordon Lightfoot" -- Kat notes a passing.


"jacklyn zeman, rose schlossberg, john travolta and..." -- Rebecca notes the passing of Jacklyn Zeman.


"Iraq snapshot," "Tina Turner (1939 to 2023)," "The groundbreaker Tina Turner," "Tina Turner," "Lauren Boebert gets burned by AOC," "MAX and NETFLIX, Eva Longoria," "Tina Turner, Eric Swalwell, John Roberts," "They've ruined their reputation," "Hate merchant Tulsi Gabbard," "tina turner passed but the hideous gop lingers," "Tina " and "The wrong people are dying" -- The community notes the passing of Tina Turner.


 "Gay actor George Maharis has died" -- Stan notes the passing. 

"10 great songs that Cynthia Weil co-wrote" and "Cynthia Weil" -- Marcia and Kat note Cynthia Weil's passing.

"Hate merchant Pat Robertson has passed away" -- Kat notes the end of Pat Robertson.

"Glenda Jackson" -- Ruth notes the actress's passing.



"Iraq snapshot" -- C.I. notes the passing of Daniel Ellsberg.


"Andrea Evans" -- Kat notes the passing of a soap opera icon. 


"Tony Bennett" -- Kat notes the passing of a great singer.


"Paul Reubens," "Pee-Wee's Big Holiday" and "One more time on Pee-Wee Herman" -- Betty and Marcia note the passing of Paul Reubens.

"Robbie Robertson" -- Kat covers the passing.

 "David Jacobs" -- Kat notes the passing of a TV creator. 


"Arleen Sorkin" -- Marcia notes the passing of a voice, sitcom and daytime TV actress.


"billy miller has passed away" -- Rebecca notes a passing. 

"DiFi dies" -- Betty notes the passing of an elderly fool.

"David McCallum led a long life" -- Stan notes the passing of an actor who starred in two huge TV shows. 


"rudolph isley " -- Rebecca notes the passing of a music legend.


"Phyllis Coats -- TV's original Lois Lane" -- TV's first Lois Lane remembered by Kat.


"Piper Laurie" -- Marcia remembers the late actress.

"Suzanne Somers" -- Isaiah notes the significance of Suzanne Somers.


 "Mailbag" -- noting the passing of Mark Goddard.

 "lara parker" -- Rebecca covers the passing of Lara Parker.


"Carla Bley" -- Marcia notes the passing of a jazz pioneer.


"Gregg Sutton" -- Kat notes the passing of a musician.


 "Matthew Perrry" -- Ruth notes the passing of a sitcom star.


 "Tyler Christopher" -- Betty notes the passing of a popular soap opera actor.


 "Peter White has passed" -- Ruth notes the passing of a soap opera icon.


"rosalynn carter " -- Rebecca notes the passing of a First Lady. 


"Marty Kroft" -- Elaine notes the passing of a visual pioneer.



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