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Saturday, October 31, 2009

One year Ago: When "Sarkozy" Punk'd Palin

Knights of the Living Dead: A Bush-Cheney-Rove Halloween

Oh, Welles: Halloween Gone Wrong

In this little clip, Orson Welles, obviously distressed, defends his Halloween broadcast of "War of the Worlds" in 1938 that caused panic.

The Greatest 'Ghost' for Halloween

One of Beethoven's all-time greats: the Piano Trio No. 5, or "Ghost." Here's the first part of movement 2 from the legendary Jackie DuPre, Daniel Barenboim, Pinchas Zukerman trio....

Fun Flick for Halloween

While still in film school three years ago, my son Andy Mitchell directed a "zombie" short that won a competition, co-starring Casey Predovic. But what's Turtle doing handing out the prize? Enjoy.

Halloween Dylan

Bob in makeup during Rolling Thunder Review (I was there for first show in, aptly, Plymouth, MA). That's Mick Ronson on gittar -- from his Bowie days he knew about makeup and fright nights.

Norton! His New Obama Film

Preview of campaign flick coming up next week on HBO. Feature piece on it tomorrow in NYT arts & Leisure.

For Halloween: My Photo of the Day

To get you into the "spirits" of Halloween: cemetery with Revolutionary War and militia vets, near my home.

One Year: McCain on 'SNL' -- With Fey/Palin

We knew it was over when he resorted to this...

Friday, October 30, 2009

Walt Whitman: Real or Hoax?

It's said to be the actual Walt Whitman in early recording reading his own poetics in this Levi's ad. Mindblowing -- but many dispute it. I wanna believe.

UPDATE Snakes on the Plame: As New Cheney Docs Released, Previews of Hollywood Version

Big news tonight is release of those Cheney interview notes--well, the parts not redacted--and what they show about his involvement in Plamegate. Earlier this week, by coincidence, I wrote a major take on upcoming Doug Liman film based on Valerie Plame's book, starring Naomi Watts as Val and Sean Penn as Joe W. Not coming out for a few months and very little has emerged about it so far, but I report on a review by someone who attended a test screening--and more importantly, word from Liman himself at his blog. It seems he knows Cheney was behind it all but unlike Ollie Stone, he doesn't want to show that clearly without the full facts. Here is Huff Post version, it's also at E&P. Fun read.

The Scariest Halloween Ever

You've read about it, you've heard snippets, but have you actually ever heard the entire original Orson Welles' created broadcast of "War of the Worlds" that drove the country crazy? The people behind the upcoming Richard Linklater flick, Me and Orson Welles, are airing it tonight on the 71st anniversary. Find it here. Note: the new film is based on a book by my friend Robert Kapilow. I caught a screening at the recent Woodstock Film Festival and it's very good.

Still One of My Favorite Anti-War Songs...

I've posted this recent Richard Thompson classic, "Dad's Gonna Kill Me," before but this is a new live version. The "Dad," of course, is short for "Baghdad." As he says, "we're still winning on the Fox evening news."

Coming from 'NYT' Magazine on Sunday: Obama=JFK?

Matt Bai in a piece in this Sunday’s NYT Magazine called “Escalations” suggests “Afghanistan might be Vietnam” and “Obama the real Kennedy.” What does THAT mean? It gets a scary because he notes early on that JFK was killed eight days after saying that he really didn’t want to big a lot of troops in Vietnam. But he is not suggesting that Obama’s life is in danger.

Instead, and in sharp contrast to David Brooks’ column today, he shows respect for Obama’s decision to assess and go slow “even when allies and critics are pounding on the door.” But in the end, he predicts, Obama will stick to “the center lane of American politics.” Much like JFK, who despite the hype, might well have ventured deeper into Vietnam In other words, boomers who, Bai writes, have “pined” for the idealism of JFK, which didn’t much exist, really may get the true JFK — the moderate realist.

My Photo of the Day: Farewell to Autumn?

This ought to just about do it for fall colors in the Northeast. This shot, of an old inn in Cold Spring on the Hudson, taken by yours truly just last week. Here's my main page at Flickr with various portfolios, from Venice to Taos.

David Brooks: Why Can't Obama Be More Like...Bush?

Glenn Greenwald with good take on David Brooks' NYT column today in which he claims to do "good journalism" but calling experts on Afghanistan--who all agree with his own position. Also note insistence that Obama take firm stand and show backbone despite the "complexity" -- like Bush blundering into Iraq? Also note that Brooks never cites "the surge" as Bush wisdom -- maybe because Brooks himself opposed it at the start.

Jon Stewart Classic: On Fox News Bias and White House

Back in peak form last night...and a hit on Valerie Jarrett wanting to speak "truth to power" -- when the White House needs to remember that IT is the power and needs to speak to Fox's un-truths.
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My Son's Hot New Web Series -- Episode 1

It's truly "MacAwesome" and grew out of Andy Mitchell's senior film school film -- which has just been selected for the Asheville Film Festival. It's featured at the Koldcast TV site and is already one of the most popular online series out there (it's also at Funny or Die, Bing, and more). The Koldcast site has all episodes, music video, trailers and more. Here's the first episode, as seen at YouTube, with links there to episodes 2 and 3:

The Music Video

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Ethics Probe Leaked!

Wash Post has details on ethic probes of leading congress people, involved in the usual military/lobbyist dirty biz. Mainly Dems, including John Murtha, with GOPers too, of course.

The Sonny Side of Leonard Cohen

Two radically different giants -- poet Leonard Cohen and jazz hero Sonny Rollins -- teemed up awhile back for Leonard's classic "Who By Fire." Once in a lifetime.

Snowe Job in Any Language

NYT had piece earlier today on the Japanese creating a new verb, "obamu" -- to charge ahead with optimism. I got a strong reaction by suggesting in a tweet that in the U.S. the verb is "snobamu" -- to charge ahead if Sen. Olympia Snowe approves.

I'm Back to Blogging!

And happy to return! This used to a popular blog, until my attention was diverted by a new Editor & Publisher blog, writing and promoting two books, and then this past March, Twitter. So it's been used as a place to send people to read or order those two books (see book covers at left and hype down the page). Now I'll be blogging here while still doing the E&P and Tweet thing, with plenty of serious and fun stuff, music and video and original photos. Leave a welcome back comment, if you wish!

The Purity and Essence of "Dr. Strangelove"

People who know me know that "Strangelove" has been one of my fave films since I saw it on my birthday, as an early teen, when it came out. Here's a treat if you haven't seen it: the original trailer for the movie, too "radical" in cinema terms back then and so never screened.

Hey, Joe, Where Ya Goin' With That Dumb In Your Hand?

If you missed Jon Stewart hitting media on public option coverage last night -- and reviving his famous hangdog Joe Lieberman impression, go here for video.

New Swell Season CD Is...Swell

The 2nd CD by the terrific "Once" couple (on screen and off, for awhile) just out this week and it's a treat. You might also check out albums by Glen's popular Irish rock group The Frames -- and who can forget his co-starring role in "The Commitments" oh so many years ago. Here's the opening tune from the new CD:

Frank Account from PBS

Sounds like terrific PBS film coming next Monday on the lynching of Leo Frank -- with spotlight on how newspaper coverage helped inspired the mob. NYT preview here.

"The Office" Web Series: "Subtle Sexuality"