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July 18, 2020:


Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, I must write these here notes in a hurry, for she of the Evil Eye will be here all too soon.  So, let me just jump right in, let me just dive right in, let me not just stick my big toe in the water we call notes, let us stick the whole damn foot in and be done with it.  Let us not waste time in frivolity or be frolicsome, let’s just get on with it, shall we, and yet, here I am going on and on and on that I should not waste time and doing nothing but.  Well, as our favorites, Babs and Donna once said, “Enough is Enough.

Yesterday was a busy day.  I got up at eleven-thirty after seven hours of sleep.  Once up, I did a few things, went and did an errand, came home, did some work on the computer, and got ready for the Zoom sessions.  The first one was a three o’clock with just a single performer.  We went through everything we needed to and that was a good meeting.  Then at three-thirty we had the second Zoom session, this one with our ensemble of singers.  We went over all the details for the two numbers they’re involved in, and we got everything straight.

After that, I got two good ideas on how to make the ensemble job easier and we also realized that the track we’d sent wasn’t matching up with the sheet music – so we checked and the track had a glitch in it, so that got fixed and I resent the track to everyone.  So, that’s all done now.

Then I had a Chinese chicken salad from Stanley’s – excellent as always and always excellent.  I hadn’t eaten anything at all prior to that.  Then I had the 7:00 Zoom session, went over the song in question, and that’s all good now. After all that, I sat on my couch like so much fish.

Last night, I watched another De Palma movie, and a movie that is, for me, one of the nadirs of his career and he’s had more than a few – Body Double.  I actually think it’s one of the worst movies ever made, but two interesting things are in it so I’ll point those out in a moment.  The plot is absurd, the Hitchcock “homages” are so blatant and ridiculous it almost plays like a parody.  But that’s not all of it – what it really is is De Palma ripping off Hitchcock and De Palma ripping off himself ripping off Hitchcock, since we get a little Dressed to Kill and a little Blow Out along the way.  The 10-star “reviews” on the imdb are hilarious in their stupidity.  For these people, De Palma can do no wrong – even his worst is, for these people, a masterpiece.  They talk about the surprises and twists and turns.  Anyone who doesn’t know exactly what’s going on within the first fifteen minutes of this film should have their movie fan card revoked.  Part of that is because the brilliant Mr. De Palma is very ham-fisted in the sequences where he’s trying to be deceptive.  It’s just ludicrous.  Craig Wasson is simply terrible in this movie, but that’s as much De Palma’s fault (co-writer and all).  If you read his pre-filming comments, De Palma is so cocky and to then deliver this utter tripe would be a comeuppance for any other director, but his retort is simply, “they either love me or hate me.”  Look, bad is bad, that’s the bottom line.  Even Hitchcock came a cropper occasionally.

The Vertigo and Rear Window stuff is so blatant and so irritating.  There’s an endless scene at a shopping center on Rodeo Drive that is as silly as anything you’ll ever see.  But that’s where the first surprise of the evening happened.  At one point, the claustrophobic Mr. Wasson gets in an elevator, just him and the girl he’s been following who, for some reason, has bought a new pair of underpants and has worn them out of the store while tossing the pair she was wearing in the trash (where Mr. Wasson retrieves them and puts them in his pocket – no, I’m not making any of this up).  Suddenly, about ten other people crowd into the elevator.  Mr. Wasson, the claustrophobe doesn’t care for this.  As I watched the scene, which I’ve seen several times before, I took note of a gentleman near the elevator doors talking to whatever gal he was with.  And I thought, if my eyes don’t deceive me, that is Mr. Robert Yacko.  So, I stopped the movie and e-mailed him, and hot damn if I wasn’t right.  His first film job, basically an extra, but my eyesight is still pretty good, I’d say.

Then, later, in the Melanie Griffith section (she plays a porn star), we have scenes in porn world.  And guess what line they rip-off?  Not a line from Hitchcock, although the line does involve the last four letters in Hitchcock.  That’s right – clearly Mr. De Palma has seen The First Nudie Musical and has borrowed one of its most famous lines, just as the South Park boys did in their film, Orgazmo.  Just once it would be nice to receive credit for these borrowing.  But we were there first, Brian, oh, yes, we were there first.  And then we have to sit through more scenes even though anyone with a brain in their head has already figured out every single “twist.”  But on it goes, almost two hours of it.  Thirty minutes less would have at least helped.  The Twilight Time Blu-ray is first rate, but the film is the film.

After that, I had a couple of pieces of toast, and then I relaxed and listened to music.

Today, I’ll be up by eight-thirty, I’ll answer e-mails, and then I have to leave until noon.  Not sure how I’ll fill those hours, really, but we shall see.  I do have to pick up stuff from the mail place, so I’ll do that.  And if I can get into Gelson’s, I might see if they have anything I might like for the meal o’ the day.  Once back home, then I’ll do whatever needs doing, I’ll read over the commentary and do any finessing I need to, then I’ll watch, listen, and relax.

Tomorrow will be a ME day, and then next week will be all Kritzerland show stuff, including the Zoom sessions for all the singers.  So, a busy week.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, be up by eight-thirty, answer e-mails, do stuff including picking up packages, be home at noon, eat, do whatever needs doing, finesse the commentary, and then watch, listen, and relax.  Today’s topic of discussion: What are your all-time favorite thrillers?  Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, happy to have put my whole damn foot in the water, notes-wise.

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