Monthly Archives: June 2016

Reading the Landscape: 45

The Sears Roebuck store at the foot of the Watchung Hills near Plainfield, NJ has one of the most interesting murals I’ve ever seen in a nondescript chain store. Beneath the painting is a plaque. The type is too small for a blog sized photo, but I’ll cut and paste the words from the town […]

Eddie and the Cruisers (1983)

Martin Davidson’s film about the disappearance of a fictional New Jersey rock singer initially flopped at the box office. It later became a “cult favorite” on cable television. Many film critics blame it on a two month holdup in its theatrical release. Instead of August, they contend, the film hit the multiplexes in October, long […]

The Wind Rises (2013)

Originally posted on Writers Without Money:
The Wind Rises may well end up being the greatest film of this decade. It’s certainly the front-runner so far. Much has been made of Miyazaki’s announcement this would be his final film, but it has the markers all over it; it’s what the French call a “testament film”.…

Dragonslayer (1981)

Dragonslayer is the child of Jaws and Star Wars, the long-lost uncle of The Hunger Games, and in some ways better than all three. While it has gotten some publicity recently – Guillermo del Toro has praised the special effects and called for a blue ray release– it is still far too obscure. If only […]

Reading the Landcape: 44

Scenes of great personal significance, meaningless to others.

Blue Collar (1978)

If you’re ever tempted to feel nostalgic for the days before NAFTA, Paul Schrader’s directorial debut might provide some cold satisfaction. Those “good jobs” Democratic politicians are always talking about never really existed. Factory work was a trap, a poorly paid, debt-ridden hell caught between corrupt, mobbed up unions, and a spiteful, authoritarian management. Harvey […]

Diary of a Dishwasher: 5

As a child, I used to wonder why my grandmother never ate butter. Not only would she carefully check all her meals for any trace of the offending diary product, she would refuse, even to have it in the house. One Christmas she explained why. Decades before, when she was a little girl, her own […]

Reading the Landscape: 43

I will on occasion think about the unrealistic expectations society inflicts on women.

Diary of a Dishwasher: 4

Some things are constant, death, taxes, Clintons and Bushes in the White House, and bad classic rock at work. The music they play in the kitchen of the establishment that employs me as a dishwasher is almost the exactly same music they used to play at the school supply warehouse where I had my very […]

Reading the Landscape: 41

Waiting for the resurrection.