Category Film

Joker (2019)

(Spoiler for one scene) As most critics have noted, Todd Phillips’s Joker is a loose reboot of Martin Scorsese’s underrated 1983 film King of Comedy. The similarities, right down to the cameo by Robert De Niro, are hard to miss. For me, however, the film’s most revealing moment evokes, not Scorsese, or other “gritty” 1970s […]

Building the Perfect AV Set-Up On a Budget Part 2: Video

Yesterday we went over my budget picks for an audiophile stereo set-up using the stuff I actually have around and use. I spent $123. Lets see if we can beat this on video! In this post I’m including video devices including TVs, DVD, Blu-Ray, VHS and file playback. FLATSCREEN TV: Olevia 40 inch I got […]

Cobra Kai (2018): The Missing Father–The Missing Son

(The first season of Cobra Kai is free until September 11) The Karate Kid, one of the iconic movies of the 1980s, is about two things, the missing father and the missing son. Daniel LaRusso, played by My Cousin Vinny’s Ralph Macchio, is a working-class Italian American from Newark, New Jersey. The son of a […]

Can a White Actor Play a Black Historical Character?

I found this old interview of James Earl Jones by Dick Cavett. Anthony Quinn (a Mexican of Irish descent) had planned to make a film about the Haitian Emperor Henry Christophe. It’s fairly clear that Jones doesn’t think Quinn should play Henry Christophe but he makes his point in a very nuanced, sophisticated way that’s […]

Slavery vs. Free Labor

This is how the ruling class actually talks about us. From the movie Queimada by Gillo Pontecorvo. It’s also a pretty good explanation of why the ultimate outcome of the United States Civil War was capitalist oligarchy.

It Can And Is Happening Here

I gave a quick talk about Occupy Wall Street to the Malta NY Rotary Club once. A man came up to me afterward. He looked like the aged Buster Keaton of The Railrodder and had made his living before he retired fixing CRT televisions. In the abstract I should have loved this guy. He came […]

This is Why The French Invented Guillotines

The Sackler family, who made their fortune off of Oxycontin, which is probably the major reason the life expectancy for middle-aged working-class white people has dramatically fallen over the past decade, are almost a perfect example of how the ruling class sees the world. As long as they get their kids into the right schools they […]

Come and See (1985)

That  German Chancellor Angela Merkel was invited to the 75th Anniversary of D-Day but not Russian President Vladimir Putin seems to have surprised more people in the American corporate media than in Russia. For many people in the west, the belated Anglo American invasion of France in the Summer of 1944 is the central event […]

Cold War (2018)

Cold War is an exquisitely filmed, critically acclaimed film by Paweł Pawlikowski about a late Stalinist era bandleader played by Tomasz Kot and his muse, a singer played by Joanna Kulig. While it lost the “Best Foreign Language” film Oscar to Alfonso Cuarón’s Roma, it did manage to pull in close to 20 million dollars […]

The Death of Stalin (2017)

It is I, Robert Mueller, and I have come to the White House to depose Trump and restore Hillary Clinton to her rightful place in the Oval Office. For an American, or any westerner, honestly confronting the legacy of the Soviet Union under Joseph Stalin can be especially difficult, or even impossible. On one hand, […]