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Greetings, my fellow port swillers!


As friends of the decanter may know, ol’ Robbo remains a devotee of Netflix’s DVD service.  I have long found it very satisfying to load up the ol’ queue, forget about what I put in it, and then be pleasantly surprised by the stream of envelopes coming through the mailbox.  I tend to do this loading in bursts of between 20 and 30 titles at a go and then letting them run out before recharging the list.

While I usually do my loading just off the cuff, today I decided to try a slightly different experiment by keeping a small notepad with me all day and jotting down films that occurred to me from time to time.  Here’s what I came up with:

The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across The 8th Dimension – Because wherever you go, there you are.

Impromptu – A, well, highly romanticized version of the meeting and falling in love of Frederic Chopin and the poetess George Sand.  It’s one of those Merchant/Ivory-inspired period pieces and really pretty good, especially as it shows what a lot of shites Franz Liszt and his pals were.

Flash Gordon – Because sometimes you just have to go for the worst.  Also because Queen did the soundtrack.

Dodgeball – Because sometimes you just have to go for teh stoopid.

The Ref – I meant to watch this around Christmas but didn’t get the chance.  Always enjoyed Dennis Leary’s brand of brutal Irish humor.

Lost In La Mancha – Documentary about the collapse of Terry Gilliam’s effort to film a Don Quixote movie (which I believe he’s still trying to do).  Fascinating behind-the-scenes look at movie-making in general and Gilliam-style movie-making in particular.

Topsy-Turvy – Gilbert and Sullivan attempting to save their partnership.  This is one of the Mothe’s favorites.

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade – I don’t know why I don’t own this.  Best of the series IMHO. “You call this archeology?”

The Freshman – Matthew Broderick and Marlon Brando, who is damned funny lampooning himself.  Plus Bert Parkes singing “Tequila”. What’s not to love?

Eric the Viking – One of the smaller Python offshoots, but it has its moments.

Jabberwocky – Ditto.

Sharknado 3: O, Hell No – See Dodgeball above.

Lost in Translation – Bill Murray really is a superb actor, all the goofball stuff aside.  You watch this movie just to see the subtle changes in his expressions.

The Dam Busters – Because Lancasters with bouncing bombs vs. Nazis, that’s why!

Casablanca – I don’t know why I don’t own this, either.

Battleship – Well, because Liam Neeson action movie, I guess.

Analyze This – Robert De Niro is even funnier lampooning himself than is Brando.  And scarier.

Star Trek: First Contact – Best of the TNG movies, as far as I’m concerned.

The Last Valley – One of those very long Omar Sharif movies from the late 60’s/70’s.  In this one, he’s a student fleeing the ravages of the 30 Years’ War and winds up running into Michael Caine and a band of soldiers in an as yet unplundered remote village.  There they bond and wind up holding the place in defense against other marauding bands.  It has a sort of Seven Samurai feel about it in this.

I also attempted to watch Ed Wood, the movie about the guy who made Plan 9 From Outer Space, but the DVD was cracked.  I sent it back, of course, but is it worth asking for a new copy?  Unlike all of the movies listed above, I’ve never seen this one.  (I’m like that, preferring to watch films over and over again and only now and again introducing a new one to the rotation.)

Between these and what I’ve already got in my queue, I reckon I’m good to go until Opening Day of baseball season at least.


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February 2016