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April 10, 2019:

BROADENING ONE’S HORIZONS

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, I am sitting here like so much fish, listening to the interesting symphonies of Mr. Benjamin Frankel, a film composer I’ve always been very fond of.  These are not tuneful works, but I’m enjoying some of them nonetheless.  It’s occasionally fun to hear atonal music as long as it’s got form and purpose and isn’t too far out there.  It took me a while to appreciate the symphonies of Humphrey Searle, another film composer who writes atonal classical music, but once you kind of get with it it can have its pleasures, and many of the Searle and Frankel symphonies do sound like film music in certain ways.  In any case, it’s always good to broaden one’s horizons.  Broad horizons, that’s the ticket.

Yesterday was a day in which I broadened my horizons, and yet not.  I did manage to get eight lovely hours of sleep, so that was nice.  Once up, I answered e-mails, had telephonic conversations, but I think the head-knocking incident was a little worse that I thought it was.  I had quite a lovely gash there, even though I saw no blood when it happened.  And I had a residual headache lurking for most of the day.  I did some work on the computer, and then it was time to mosey on over to my lunch meeting.

The meeting went very well, we got issues ironed out and I believe everyone is on the same page now, specifically page 110.  I had a yummilicious pulled pork sandwich and a little salad with balsamic dressing.  After the meeting, which lasted about an hour, I went to the mail place and picked up a couple of packages, then came home.

Once home, I did more work on the computer, had more telephonic calls, listened to music, and then finally sat on my couch like so much fish.

Last night, I finished watching The Quiller Memorandum, starring George Segal, Max Von Sydow, and Alec Guiness.  It’s a really peculiar movie.  The writer of the novel wasn’t thrilled with Harold Pinter’s adaptation and one can see why – changing Quiller from a Brit to an American gives the whole film a weird vibe, and then there are the classic Pinter pauses, and it doesn’t really add up to much in the end.  But it did hold my interest and the transfer is quite nice and unlike the UK Blu-ray, this one has accurate color, while the UK disc’s color is faded and brown.

After that, I watched another motion picture on Blu-ray entitled Rider on the Rain, a weird French movie starring Charles Bronson, Marlene Jobert, and others.  I’ve always had a soft spot for this film, silly as it is, and boy is it silly at times. There are two completely different transfers on this Blu-ray and they are fascinating.  The French version is very nice, sharp, and obviously a new transfer. The color seems fine and is mostly fine, although I kept thinking the contrast was too light and the skin tones a bit too brown.  There is a red flight bag that plays an important role in the film – it keeps changing colors in this transfer – from RED to orange to RED and back again.  The most interesting thing is that while Bronson is dubbed (Wikipedia says it’s his own voice, but I don’t think so at all), he clearly learned all his lines phonetically in French so that he’s actually speaking the French dialogue, then dubbed by another in French.  Jill Ireland, too.  So all dialogue scenes were shot twice.  I enjoyed seeing it again.  I owned a 16mm LPP print (perfect color – no fade stock) and watched it quite often.  Then I sampled the English version.  There, everyone is mouthing English dialogue, so all the French actors are dubbed – unfortunately, Ms. Jobert’s dubber is quite irritating in terms of the sound of her voice.  But you get Bronson in this version and Jill Ireland, too.  Now, I’d seen the DVD Beaver’s “review” and caps – his caps are the WORST and he has an agenda, too, so that because the color scheme is very different than the French transfer – “green” he says – he only chooses a frame that will bolster that argument.  Well, you can pull a frame of anything to bolster an argument but it doesn’t mean it’s accurate, nor are his caps EVER accurate.  So, even though the French is clearly a newer and sharper transfer, the color of the English actually matches the color that was on my 16mm print.  Yes, it does have more green, which renders the skin tones perfect, the red bag is at all times RED, and the blues are much deeper and better. I won’t be convincing anyone that that’s correct, but it is.  But, I’d simply watch both because both are fun in their own specific ways.

After that, I had another telephonic conversation, listened to Frankel and broadened my horizons, and also got the new master for the Incidental Music from Three Plays, which I’ll listen to as soon as these here notes are up.

Today, I have to finish reading a play, I have to choose songs, I have to eat, I have to hopefully pick up some packages, and I have to, at some point, relax.

The rest of the week is more of the same, and I have a lunch meeting on Friday, the final workshop at the Group Rep on Saturday (and maybe seeing the matinee of their upstairs show), and other stuff.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, finish reading a play, choose songs, eat, hopefully pick up packages, and relax.  Today’s topic of discussion: It’s Ask BK Day, the day in which you get to ask me or any dear reader any old question you like and we get to give any old answer we like. So, let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, having broadened my horizons.

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