Friday, December 26, 2008

Cheapest Wii Downloads

I really have to give my grandson most of the credit for helping me create this blog post. One day, while we were out mountain biking, the subject of how much his father was spending buying all of the games that I noticed in his house. I could'nt believe it! I decided to search the Internet to find the least expensive [cheap], high quality Wii download site there was out there. I looked at three such sites and decided on one!
You really should ask yourself if you are Tired of Paying Too Much for Your Wii Games? Do you wish you could Download all your favorite Wii Games and Media right from your computer and save hundreds or even thousands per year? Want to Turn your Wii into a Media Center?
If you answered YES to any of these questions, then we have found a solution for you that will change your Wii experience FOREVER! It's called My Wii Downloads which was establish in 2008 to help meet the incredible demand for downloads for the universally popular Nintendo Wii. Today, tens of thousands of users later, My Wii Downloads is the ultimate source for downloadable games, movies, TV shows, software, music, and much more.
Their mission is to help every gamer and movie enthusiast get the ultimate Wii experience.Wii Downloads are rapidly becoming a must, as gamers and movie lovers look for the perfect way to utilize the full potential of their Wii system .

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The Worlds Most Popular Pianist

Born Philippe Pagès on December 28th, 1953, he encountered the piano early in his life. His father, a piano teacher, laid the foundation for his son's later success and began teaching him how to play at a very young age. It is said that, at the age of six, Richard Clayderman could read music more adeptly than his native French.

At the age of twelve, he was accepted at the Conservatoire of Music where, at sixteen, he won first prize of the piano. He was predicted a promising career as a classical pianist. Shortly after this, he cast aside his classical training and turned to contemporary music, because at that time his father was ill and unable to financially support his son. So, in order to earn a living, he found work as an accompanist and session musician.

In 1976 he was invited by Olivier Toussaint a French record producer and his partner Paul de Senneville to record a gentle piano ballad. Paul de Senneville had composed this ballad as a tribute to his new born daughter “Adeline”. The 23 year old Philippe Pagès was auditioned along with 20 other pianists. They liked his special and soft touch on the keyboards combined with his good looks and fine personality, and finally he got the job.
Philippe Pagès' name was changed to Richard Clayderman (he adopted his great-grandmother's last name to avoid mispronunciation of his real name outside France), and the single took off, selling an astonishing 22 million copies in 38 countries. It was called Ballade pour Adeline.

With his lush, sophisticated, instrumental, approach to pop music, Richard Clayderman is, according to -The Guinness Book of World Records, "the most successful pianist in the world." Clayderman's albums routinely sell millions of copies and his concerts are quickly sold out. In a review of his 1985 Carnegie Hall concert, ~Variety wrote, "(Clayderman's) main appeal lies in his youth and boyish good looks...coupled with his gentlemanly charm and his thick French accent, they promise to rope in the romantically inclined middle-aged Yank ladies who cotton to this ilk of soothing entertainment

Clayderman's shift from classical to popular music not only allowed for his remarkably successful career but moved him into an area of music which he feels more closely reflectshis personality. Although he still plays classical music on stage, for his United States concerts he focuses on romantic interpretations of popular American melodies. "I think there is a need for this kind of romantic music, " he told the Christian Science Monitor, "because we live in a world [where] terrible things are happening, and people need music to feel a bit cool and relaxed. I think a proportion of my audience also listens to other styles. For example, I'm sure the young people like rock 'n roll music. But through my playing they discover a new kind of music--classical, because sometimes I play that on stage."

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Entertaining Andre Ruie

A versatile violinist and spirited conductor, Andre Rieu capitalized on his classical music training and natural charisma to successfully recreate the uplifting atmosphere of the nineteenth-century Viennese dance halls for twentieth-century audiences worldwide. Rieu's unique classical style evolved around the notion that the audience must be involved in order to appreciate the music.

Although the inspiration for his innovative musical presentations reached back over 100 years, his style was frequently categorized as "crossover" music because it combined the revered scores of the classical composers with a more informal performance atmosphere characteristic of popular music.Rieu was born in 1950 in Maastricht, Holland. His father conducted the Limburg Symphony Orchestra of Holland and the Leipzig Opera. Classical music permeated the Rieu household, and the Rieu children were well versed in the works of the great composers. Rieu and his numerous siblings were heavily involved in musical training. Each displayed some talent and learned to play an instrument. Rieu himself developed into an accomplished violinist.
As his understanding and appreciation of music grew, he developed a special fondness for the rhythms of the great Viennese waltzes. The waltzes, he maintained, stirred his emotions and created euphoria, so it was natural that he would devote his career to that style of music.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Romancing The Stone Film Review

Romancing the Stone is an American 1984 action-adventure film. Directed by Robert Zemeckis, it stars Michael Douglas, Kathleen Turner and Danny DeVito. This film was one of the best adventure/humor movies of the eighties. Not only did it boost the star rating of Michael Douglas, it helped launch Kathleen Turner into stardom. It also was Robert Zemeckis's first box office hit as a director.

The plot of the movie revolves around romance writer Joan Wilder, played by KathleenTurner, who travels to Colombia to find her kidnapped sister. In time she falls in love with a soldier of fortune [Michael Douglas] and the two become romanticallyinvolved as they search for a precious stone which the kidnappers want.

The beginning of the film shows Joan receiving a package from her dead brother- in-law. Soon after the package arrives she gets a frantic call from her sisterElaine[Mary Ann Trainor] informing her that she has been kidnapped and needs the map from the package as ransom. Joan flies down to Columbia but she gets lost on the way to her destination. But eventually she runs into Jack T. Colton[Douglas] and offers him some money if he would help her find her way to Cartagena. He helps her to elude a few unsavory characters who seem to be following her. Oneof these villains just happens to be the leader of the secret police who is responsiblefor her brother-in-laws death. The other two zany characters are Ralph [Danny DeVito]and Ira [Zack Norman].

Jack uncovers the map that Joan is carrying and after some convincing she agrees to go after the treasure. They agree that after finding the treasure they can then give the worthless map to the kidnappers. After some unbelievable escapes, they eventually find the treasure which turns out to be an enormous emerald called the malevolent. Zolo and Ralph steal it from them but then the Colombian police show up. After getting the stone back from Ralph, Joan and Jack get separated but agree to meet at Joan's hotel in Cartagena, but when Jack doesn't show up, Joan starts to get worried.

She then meets her sister's captors[Ralph and Ira] and turns over the map. They are interrupted by Zolo who knows that the map is worthless. Zolo's men are holding Jack who refuses to disclose the location of the emerald. Zolo uses Joan as bait and tells Jack that if he refuses to disclose the emeralds location he will be forced to feed Joan to the crocodiles. Jack relents and gives up the gem and tosses it towards the crocodiles. Zolo catches the stone but his hand, along with the gem, ends up in one of the crocodiles stomach. A gunfight ensues between Zolo's men and Ira's men. This allows Joan, Elaine and Jack to escape. After a prolonged fight with Zolo's men, Ira and his men escape, but Ralph is left behind.

Zolo catches Joan and Elaine. Joan tries to kill Zolo with his own switchblade, but Zolo blocks the thrown knife with a piece of wood. After Elaine faints from the sight, Joan pleads for Jack's help. He must decide whether to save her or hold onto the croc which has ingested El Corazon. He decides to try to save Joan by scaling a rock wall to reach her. However, he arrives moments after Zolo falls into a pit full of crocodiles. Seeing that the women are safe, Jack leaves to pursue El Corazon once more.

Joan then returners home to New York where she is confronted with lonely feelingtowards Jack. She writes a hit novel based on her recent adventures. But one day,as she is returning home she is confronted by Jack,who is wearing crocodile skinboots, waiting for her in a sailboat that is parked on the main street in front of her apartment. It seems that Jack managed to catch the croc who had swallowed the gem. The croc had suffered a fatal case of indigestion from swallowing the gem. The ending is a not so typical love story showing Joan and Jack kissing on the deck of the Angelina, which was named for Joan's fictional heroine, as the trailer that the boat rests on drives off into the streets of N.Y. City.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Alfred Hitchcock's Finest Work

Vertigo is another one of Alfred Hitchcock's best produced movies that was released in July1958. It's a Hitchcock thriller that you have to see from the very beginning. The film features James Stewart, Kim Novak and Barbara Bel Geddes and tells the story of a retired policeman who falls in love with a mysterious woman he has been hired to follow.Although it had mixed reviews on its first release, it has since gained in esteem and is frequently listed among the greatest films ever made.

San Francisco detective John "Scottie" Ferguson (James Stewart) develops acrophobia after a fellow police officer (Fred Graham) falls to his death while trying to save him during a rooftop chase. His acrophobia causes vertigo. He is forced to retire from policework, and is unable even to stand on a step-stool in the apartment of his friend MarjorieWood (Barbara Bel Geddes) without being paralyzed by fear and dizziness.

He is eventually hired as a private detective by one of his old friends who wantshis own wife Madeleine,who is played by Kim Novak, followed. He informs Scottie that he thinks that his wife is suffering from some sort of mental illness or demonic possession. Scottie follows Madeleine to a cemetery where she is seen visiting the grave of a woman named Carlotta Valdes who had killed herself one hundred years earlier.Madeleine wanders around as if she is in some sort of a trance.

Scottie is strongly attracted to Madeleine. He follows her to Fort Point at the foot of the Golden Gate Bridge where he observes her jumping into the San FranciscoBay in what appears to be a suicide attempt. She is saved by Scottie and returns with him to his apartment. They end up taking a trip to see the coastal redwoods at Big Basin Redwoods State Park. She confines in Scottie that she has dreamed of Mission San Juan Bautista and he takes her there in an effort to conquer her dreams, but she suddenly runs into the bell tower, climbs the stairs, and appears to commit suicide by jumping off the tower to her death.

Scottie suffers a nervous breakdown and runs away. At the inquest that was looking into Madeleine's death, Scottie is accused of negligence but is cleared of prosecution. Elsteris is seen reassuring him when he tells Scottie "we both know who really killed Madeleine,"referring to the fact that she was possessed by Carlotta's spirit. Scottie eventually ends up in a mental hospital where he sufferers from terrifying nightmares. His friend Midge tries her best to comfort him but soon realizes that he is still in love with Madeleine.After leaving the hospital Scottie continues to visit the places where he and Madeleine used to visit together. Then one day he notices a women [Judy Barton] who has an uncanny resemblance to Madeleine. However she is quite different in her mannerisms than Madeleine.
Scottie follows her to her hotel room where he finds out that she is a single working women who is from a little town in Kansas. She tells Scottie that she moved to San Franciscoto start a new life after a series of failed relationships. But after Scottie leaves she writes a letter confessing that she was in fact Madeleine. Elster had hired her to act as a mentally unstable false Madeleine. The women who fell from the tower was in fact Elster's real wife who was actually dead before her husband had thrown her form the tower. Elster had hired Scottie knowing full well about his Vertigo. He knew that Scottie would never be able to climb the stares of the tower. He used him to corroborate his claims of his wife's suicidal tendencies. But Judy then tears up the letter almost as soon as she had written it. She has come to the realization that she has fallen in love with Scottie.

Scottie becomes obsessed with Judy and insists that Judy even dress like Madeleine. At first she protests, but eventually gives in to the man she loves. Scotties eventuallybecomes suspicious of Judy when he notices a red jeweled pendant that he remembers thatMadeleine used to wear. Judy insists that she had inherited it. He then forces her to go the Mission Juan Bautista and forces her to climb the stairs up to the tower again.He wants her to re-enact the scene in which he failed to save Madeleine. He demands that she tell him the truth and Scottie discovers that the emotional experience has conquered his acrophobia, as he has now climbed to the top of the tower. Judy pleads with him and tells him that she is in love with him. Then suddenly a shadowy figure appears at the top of the stairs. Judy backs away from the shadow and steps off of the tower edge and plunges to her death. The shadow turns out to be a nun. Scottie who is still in shock, stares down at Judy and realizes that the emotional shock has cured him of his vertigo ,but was the cost worth it.

This is one of the few films that I had watched more than once, It may have been the combination of the plot, along with the superb acting abilities of the stares, but Iwould rate this as the best Alfred Hitchcock film that I had ever watched. It's a film that holds you in suspense from the beginning to the end.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

The Best Gentlemen Actor That I Have Ever Known

Jimmy Stewart may have passed away more than a decade ago but in my mind he will always be one of my favorite actors, always fresh in
my thoughts. His demeanor as one of the good guys is forever embellished in my mind.He was the best gentlemen actor that Ihave ever known

Over the course of his career, he starred in many films widely considered classics and was nominated for five Oscars, winning one in competition and one life achievement. He also had a remarkable military career, rising to the rank of Brigadier General in theUnited States Air Force.

He was born in Indiana Pa. on May 20th 1908.He was first attracted to Architecture but was eventually drawn into the theater at Princeton University. He made his way into Hollywood in 1935 where he would team up Director Frank Capra where he would be nominated for an Academy Award in one of his great classic films "Mr. Smith Goes To Washington". Stewart also starred opposite Katharine Hepburn and Cary Grant in George Cukor's classic The Philadelphia Story (1940). His performance as an intrusive, fast-talking reporter earned him his only Academy Award in a competitive category (Best Actor, 1941), and he beat out his good friend Henry Fonda.

Before entering military service Stewart went on to appear in a series of screwball comedies with varying levels of success. He followed the mediocre No Time for Comedy (1940) andCome Live with Me (1941) with the Judy Garland musical Ziegfeld Girl and the GeorgeMarshall romantic comedy Pot o' Gold. Stewart was drafted in late 1940. Stewart chose to become a military flyer. He became the first major American movie star to wear a military uniform in World War II. Stewart was initially held back from combat duty. Although he enlisted as a private, he earned a commission as a Second Lieutenant and completed pilot training. He was subsequently stationed in Albuquerque, NM, becoming an instructor pilot for the B-17 Flying Fortress. In August 1943 he was finally assigned to the 445th BombardmentGroup in Sioux City, Iowa, first as Operations Officer of the 703rd Bombardment Squadronand then its commander. In December, the 445th Bombardment Group flew its B-24 Liberator bombers to RAF Tibenham, England and immediately began combat operations. While flying missions over Germany, Stewart was promoted to Major. In March 1944, he was transferred as group operations officer to the 453rd Bombardment Group, a new B-24 unit that had been experiencing difficulties. As a means to inspire his new group, Stewart flew as command pilot in the lead B-24 on numerous missions deep into Nazi-occupied Europe. In 1944, he twice received the Distinguished Flying Cross for actions in combat and was awarded theCroix de Guerre. He also received the Air Medal with three oak leaf clusters. In July1944, after flying 20 combat missions, Stewart was made chief of staff of the 2nd Combat Bombardment Wing of the Eighth Air Force. Before the war ended, he was promoted to colonel, one of only a few Americans to rise from private to colonel in four years. Stewart continued to play an active role in the United States Air Force Reserve after the war, achieving the rank of Brigadier General on 23 July 1959. A little know fact was that in 1966,Brigadier General James Stewart flew as a non duty observer in a B-52 on a bombing mission during the Vietnam conflict. Stewart retired from the Air Force on 31 May 1968.

Upon Stewart's return to Hollywood in fall 1945, he decided not to renew his MGM contract.He signed with an MCA talent agency. For the remainder of his career, Stewart was able to work without limits to director and studio availability. During the 1950s, he took on more challenging roles and expanded into the western and suspense genres, thanks largely to collaborations with directors Anthony Mann and Alfred Hitchcock. James Stewart's collaborations with director Anthony Mann expanded Stewart's popularity and expanded his career into the realm of the western. Stewart's first appearance in a film directed by Mann came with the 1950 western classic, Winchester '73. The film set the pattern for their future collaborations.

In 1960, James Stewart was awarded the New York Film Critics Circle Award for BestActor and received his fifth and final Academy Award for Best Actor nomination, for his role in the 1959 Otto Preminger film Anatomy of a Murder. He also took the leading roles in three of John Ford films.As an aviator, Stewart was particularly interested in aviation films and had pushed to appear in several in the 1950s. He continued in this vein in the 1960s, most notably in a role as a hard-bitten pilot in Flight of the Phoenix (1965). He would later transfer his talents from movies to television and would appear periodically on the Johnny Carson late night show where he would share his poems that he had written throughout his life. They would later be complied into a collection titled Jimmy Stewart and His Poems. I will always remember the poem that he had dedicated to his dog called "Beau" that brought tears to many peoples eyes. He would later return to films with a major role in the Shootist, John Wayne's final film.

Stewart was offered the role of the father in On Golden Pond which went instead to Henry Fonda and earning Stewart’s friend his first Best Actor Oscar, just before his death. Long-time friend Grace Kelly, his favorite female co-star, died shortly afterwords. A few months later, Stewart starred with Bette Davis in Right of Way, which had the distinction of being the first made-for-cable movie. After filming several television movies in the 1980s, including Mr. Krueger's Christmas. James Stewart retired from acting to spend time with his family.Stewart died at the age of 89 on 2 July 1997, at his home in Beverly Hills, of cardiac arrest and a pulmonary embolism following a long illness from respiratory problems. His death came just one day after fellow screen legend and The Big Sleep co-star Robert Mitchum had died of lung cancer and emphysema. Stewart is interred in Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery in Glendale, California.
There are many names that could describe Jimmy Stewart,but I think that the one word that pops into my head the most is Gentleman. I have written countless articles about"Jimmy" because I feel he, above everyone else, deserves them. For he was truly the best Gentleman Actor that I had ever known.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Jimmy Stewart's First Great Movie

Mr. Smith goes to Washington is another one of Jimmy Stewart's great films. The theme of this movie tells us about a naive man who is appointed to fill a vacancy in the U.S. Senate. Even with the best of intentions his plans quickly collide with political corruption but he stands his ground. The release date of this classic movie was 19 Oct. 1939.It was directed by the famous Frank Capra with the help of writers Lewis R. Foster andSidney Buchman. This is the film the made Jimmy Stewart a major movie star. It was written by Lewis R. Foster and Sidney Buchman, based on Foster's novel, The Gentleman from Montana.

Jefferson Smith (James Stewart) is appointed from an unnamed state after one of its Senators dies. He is appointed because the political fat cats need someone who will not seem like a crony, but who will not stand in the way of a graft scheme for a pork barrel dam that will make big wig Jim Taylor (Edward Arnold) millions. When the wide eyed Smith gets to Washington, he discovers the corrupt bill because the dam will stand in the way of his own proposed bill for a children's camp. When he tries to stop the project, Taylor's political machine frames him to make it seem like he is the one taking graft. This leads to the dramatic confrontation in the Senate, where Smith filibusters in an attempt to getthe truth out.

Smith is taken under the wing of the publicly esteemed, but secretly crooked, Senator JosephPaine (Claude Rains), whom he admires because he was his late father's oldest and best friend. He develops an immediate attraction to the Senator's daughter Susan Paine (Astrid Allwyn) The press in Washington quickly labels Smith as being a bumpkin, having no business inWashington. Paine, to keep Smith busy, suggests he propose a bill. Smith proposes a bill that would authorize the government to loan money to buy some land for a national boy'scamp. But the piece of land that Smith wants is part of a grand scheme by Taylor and supported by Senator Paine to build the Willet Creek Dam.

Smith is accused of trying to profit from his bill, but when Smith tries to defend himself he is betrayed by Paine and runs away. But by then his secretary Clarissa Saundrers[JeanArthur] talks him into launching a filibuster on the Senate floor before the vote to expel him could take place. But he soon finds out that the opposition is too strong. Then the Senators begin to pay attention. Paine tries to introduce letters from people in Smiths own state calling for his expulsion, but Smith is befriended by the President of the Senate [Harry Carey]. He vows to press on, but he faints and collapses. SenatorPaine leaves and overcome by guilt, tries to kill himself. He goes back to the Senate chamber and confesses to the whole scheme and proclaims Smith's innocence.

Taking into consideration the year that this film is made there is no major profanity that one would expect in such a situation. This is definitely an example of what a difference one's individual actions can make. Whenever you combine Frank Capra and Jimmy Stewart in any film you can expect nothing less than a classic movie in the making. At the ripe old age of 31 Jimmy Stewart had already become a major star with the release of this movie.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

The Shining--Understanding Jack Nicholson

One of the best horror films ever made was released on may 23rd 1980Directed by Stanly Kubrick, "The Shining" is a film about a family that heads to an isolated hotel for the winter. Once there the father is overcome by some sort of evil presence which turns him into an evil violent psychopath. It is a spell binding movie with a lot of graphic scenes of blood letting. A masterpiece of modern horror! This movie will keep you glued to your seats. I would not recommend it for children unless you plan on staying up all night with them.

The lead actor, Jack Nicholson, plays such a convincing role that at times it seems he is not acting--a true sign of a great performance. His wife,played by Shelly Duvall, and his son,played by Danny Lloyd also gave really believable performances. To understand the attraction of this movie, I believe that you have to know some history about the leading character. John Joseph Nicholson was born April 22, 1937 is a three time Academy Award-winning American actor internationally renowned for his often dark-themed portrayals of neurotic characters.

Jack Nicholson has been nominated for an Academy Award 12 times and has won three times (twice for Best Actor and once as Best Supporting Actor). He is tied with Walter Brennan for most acting wins by a male actor and second to Katharine Hepburn for most acting wins overall He is also one of only two actors nominated for an Academy Award for acting in every decade since the 1960. He has won seven Golden Globe Awards, and received a Kennedy Center Honor in 2001. In 1994, he became one of the youngest actors to be awarded the American Film Institutes Life Achievement Award. He is best known for his films Chinatown, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Stanley Kubrick's The Shining, As Good as It Gets, Tim Burton's Batman, and Martin Scorsese's "The Departed".

To understand Nicholson one must first examine his early childhood.Nicholson was brought up believing his grandparents, John J. Nicholson and Ethel May Rhoads were his parents. Nicholson only discovered that his parents were actually his grandparents,and his sister was in fact his mother in 1974 Nicholson started his career as an actor, writer, and producer, working for and with Roger Corman, among others. His first real taste of writing success was the LSD-fueled screenplay for 1967's The Trip, which starred Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper. However, after a spot opened up in Fonda and Hopper's Easy Rider, it led to his first big acting break.

A Best Actor nomination came the following year for his role in Five Easy Pieces. He also appeared in "On a Clear Day You Can See Forever". Nicholson earned his first Best Actor Oscar for portraying Randle P. McMurphy in the movie One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. His first movie as a director was a 1971 movie called "Drive, He Said" It was in 1980 that he made "The Shining" Although he did not receive any Oscar nominations in this movie, it was one of his best performances.

During the eighties he stared in many more roles and it was the blockbuster movie "BATMAN" that earned him as estimated $60 million. In the 1992 movie 'A Few Good men" he played a marine Colonel. He was nominated for another Razzie Awards.One of his best roles came in 1996 in which he played a Boston Irish mob boss in "The Departed"

But through out all the years,"The Shining" still remains one of the best performances by Nicholson. A really true masterpiece of modern horror! And understanding Jack Nicholson is the key to his great acting abilities.

Monday, February 4, 2008

The Best Way To Learn How To Play An Acoustic Guitar

This article explains a few things about Guitars, and if you're interested, then this is worth reading, because you can never tell what you don't know. Is everything making sense so far? If not, I'm sure that with just a little more reading, all the facts will fall into place.

Why do YOU want to learn how to play acoustic guitar? Do you want to play for personal pleasure? Would you like to be sexier? Play in a Club? Perhaps you want to become a great artist! How about a free 6 part Acoustic Guitar e-course to start you on your way? No matter what your reasons are, if you want to learn how to play the acoustic guitar why not learn from the best!

Ben Edwards is the former lead guitarist for the popular down-under band "DegreesK" He is also a highly respected guitar teacher. Before joining the band Ben received a Bachelor of Education. His passion for teaching others, especially guitar, sparked him to develop Jamorama The Ultimate Guitar Learning Kit and now the Jamorama Acoustic Guitar Learning Kit.Ben Edwardshas put together an incredible learning kit that can get you results really fast. It includes 153 powerful video lesions, 26 Acoustic Jam tracks and 1,000's of lines of tabulature. Ben has also recorded 26 Acoustic Jam tracks for you to play along with.

After reviewing countless of websites to be included in his system,this is the BEST site that he could find. You will even learn how to read music, how to recognize chord shapes and how to transcribe songs from the radio and CD's. And remember,there are countless numbers of useless e-books on the Internet telling you how easy it is to learn to play musical instruments. I often think that learning to play an instrument is like learning a foreign language. The more you listen and practice,the better you'll get. But you have to make sure that the person that you are learning from is a professional instead of just someone throwing together a bunch of useless material, renaming it and trying to sell it.

Learning from Ben Edwards is not only going to save you money and time, you will avoid all the aggravation you have been experiencing by making the same mistakes over and over again. Just for starters, there are 10 ways of fast-tracking your way to becoming a fantastic guitarist.

And as you probably already know learning to play the acoustic guitar is not as easy as you thought it might be. And if you keep on trying to learn to play using the same old time wasting strategies,drills and same old boring exercises, you might end up being worse off. It's like a bad habit--and you know how hard they are to break!

You can't predict when knowing something extra about Guitars will come in handy. If you learned anything new about guitars in this article, you should file the article where you can find

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

The Best New Musical Talent Of 2007

He looked like an unlikely star when he took to the stage in front of Simon Cowell, Amanda Holden and Piers Morgan. But as Paul Potts began Nessun Dorma for the judges of the Britain's Got Talent show the power of his astonishing performance left few in doubt that this was no ordinary singer. He received a standing ovation from the 2000 people in the audience and left Amanda Holden with tears of joy rolling down her face. Even Simon Coswell and Piers Morgan were pleasantly surprised. He had established himself as the best new music talent of 2007.

He went on to win the talent show and received the chance to perform in front of the Queen at the Royal Variety Performance 2007. Paul also received a record deal from Simon Coswell. His first C.D. is called "One Chance"

Paul was born in 1971 in Bristol from Port Talbot in south Whales. He had appeared in four amateur opera productions and in a concert for the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and had plans for a summer tour with the Orchestra.

Potts is said to have first sung Opera in 1999 in a karaoke competition,[when he was 28 years old] dressed as Pavarotti, although he had said during the show that his voice had always been a source of solace in the past when bullied, so he would have sung from a younger age. That same year he appeared in the Michael Barrymore talent show "My Kind of Music". Although he did not win the competition, he won £8,000, which helped to pay for singing lessons in Italy.

For the Bath UK based amateur company Bath Opera, he has performed on four occasions in the roles of Don Basilio {Marriage of Figaro), Don Ottavio (Don Giovanni) and the title role in Verdi's Don Carlos, and Turandot as Prince of Persia and Herald. He also sang for the Royal Philharmonic in front of an audience of 15,000 and toured Northern Italy as a soloist.

However, after spending £20,000 on his career hopes, including a masterclass in which he sang for Luciano Pavarotti, doctors discovered a benign tumor during treatment for appendicitis in 2003. Then, shortly after his recovery, he broke his collar bone in a bike accident
Instead of thinking about singing, he was lying on the sofa in agony. Now when he goes on stage his wife of 4 years Julie doesn't want people to say "break a leg" because Paul probably would. For a time he worked as a shelf-stacker in Tesco and ended up as the manager at Bridgend's Carphone Warehouse,

After winning Britain's Got Talent, Paul has been busy circling the globe on promotion tours. It is amazing how fast his life has changed since the show. He is one of those rare individuals that has found out what can only be described as an "Over Night Success" His videos on the Internet have already received over 10 million views. He is a person who has been blessed with a great talent and deserves as much recognition as he is receiving. I do believe that there is a little Paul Potts in every one of us.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The Saddest Movie That I Ever Watched

Maybe it the sign of the times that I would pick Flight 93 as the saddest movie that I had ever seen.Usually I like movies were I do not know the ending but after reading about how the passengers on this ill-fated flight took such heroic actions I knew that I had to go see this movie.

Flight 93 was released in January of 2006 and it was directed by Peter Marbkle. It tellsus about how four terrorists wanted to turn flight 93 into a weapon of mass destructionbut forty brave and heroic passengers and crew stopped it from reaching its final target.Flight 93 was a scheduled flight from Newark International Airport (now Newark LibertyInternational Airport) in Newark, New Jersey, to San Francisco International Airport, then continuing on to Narita International Airport near Tokyo, Japan, on a different aircraft.It was one of four aircraft's that were hijacked that fateful day of September 11,2001. They crashed near Shanksville, Pennsylvania when passengers foiled the terrorist plot. It premiered January 30, 2006 on the A&E Network and was re-broadcast several timesthroughout 2006 and 2007.

It had 182 seats but was carrying only 37 passengers (including the four hijackers) andseven crew members: two pilots, the captain Jason M. Dahl and his first officer, LeRoyHomer Jr.; and five flight attendants. Because one passenger had booked two seats, some early accounts said there were 38 passengers on board. The four hijackers were seated in first class.
I thought that this film came off rather well despite the fact that it had a small budget.I remember thinking that these were only actors portraying real people but I lost that thought soon after this film started. It made me realize that this could probably happen again despite all of the security measures that have been put in place. It brings back that fateful day as if it were yesterday. Even though I knew the outcome I found myself glued to my seat and in my mind I kept on saying "Come on guys, keep on pushing"None of it is easy to watch. But flight 93 family members worked closely with thefilmmakers, while others who lost loved ones on 9/11 worry if it will be handled sensitively.

It had to be one of the most challenging movies that I had ever watched. That neverto be forgotten phrase "lets roll"later became a battle cry for those fighting Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan. Even President George Bush has been heard using it. Watching this filmmore than once still brings back emotions, and even though this film had to be the saddest movie that I ever watched, I believe that it is an important movie for it reminds us to never forget what happened on that fateful day not that long ago.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

A Most Delightful Classic Movie

Harvey is a 1950 film based on Mary Chase's Pulitzer Prize-winning play of the same name, directed by Henry Koster, and starring James Stewart and Josephine Hull. After watching it on Wednesday night, I must admit it was the most delightful classic movie that I had seen in a long time. It seems that all of us, at one time or another, just need a break from reality so that we can just relax and enjoy life. This excellent lighthearted film was adapted from the Pulitzer Prize winning hit play written by Mary Chase.
Elwood's attraction for us is perhaps what attracted him so much to James Stewart. Elwood is happy with himself and his life and even more importantly, he makes others happy with their lives. That is the great magic of Elwood and Harvey: they make others happy and they bring peace and a measure of contentment to almost everyone who know them.

Elwood P. Dowd tries, all through the movie,to introduce Harvey to everyone he meets but the only one who eventually sees him is Dr. Chumley,[Cecil Kellaway]the psychiatrist. Dowd's sister Veta[Josephine Hull] sometimes acknowledges the existence of Harvey but only when she's under extreme stress.

The story is about a man whose best friend is a "pooka" named Harvey—in the form of a six-foot, three and one half-inch-tall rabbit. Stewart plays Elwood P. Dowd, a middle-aged,individual whose best friend is an invisible six-foot, three-and-a-half-inch tall rabbit named Harvey. During the opening scenes Elwood has been driving his sister and niece Myrtle Mae Simmions [Victoria Horne]to distraction by introducing everyone he meets to his friend, Harvey. His sister, Veta tries to have Elwood committed to a Sanatorium. She admits to the attending psychiatristDr Lyman Sanderson [Charles Drake]that, after so many years of putting up with it, she sees Harvey every once in a while. This causes Dr. Sanderson to let Elwood out and lock Veta up. Dr.Chumley decides that he doesn't want to get sued, and to save the reputation of the Sanatorium, he must bring Elwood back. He then fires Dr. Sanderson.

After going through several ordeals Elwood is finally tracked down but he is unaware of his sisters plan to have him committed with the help of Judge Gaffney [William Lynn]and Dr. Chumley.Dr. Sanderson, nurse Miss Kelly [Peggy Dow] and assistant Duane Wilson [Jesse White] track downElwood in Charlie's Bar. Elwood tells the story of how he came to meet Harvey and then he is taken back to the Sanatorium where he explains his philosophy of life to Dr. Chumley, who by this time has admitted to Elwood that he has also met Harvey.He rehires Dr.Sanderson. Dr.Sanderson convinces Elwood to come into his office where he will give him a serum that will stop him from seeing Harvey.But in the meantime Elwood's sister is told by the cab driver about all of the other people he had driven home after they had been given the same serum. He tells her that they were transformed into "normal human being" and you know what stinkers they are. Veta then decides to stop the injection of the serum.The final scene involves Harvey remaining with Dr. Chumleyor continuing his life with Elwood. He gets to the gates and decides to stay with Elwood. This is such a delightful movie that at the very end of it, I was actually cheering for Harvey's decision to stay with Elwood.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Flags Of Our Fathers Movie Review

DreamWorks, Warner Bros. and Paramount present a film directed by Clint Eastwood and written by William Broyles Jr. and Paul Haggis, based on the book by James Bradley with Ron Powers.It's the life stories of the six men who raised the flag at the battle of Iwo Jima which was a turning point on World War Two.

The film opens with interlocking scenes from past and present, showing the battle under way and being remembered, with voice-overs from survivors. All the major themes are being introduced, although we will discover that only later. Then, after a tense prelude at sea,it focuses on the initial American landing, which was just too quiet; no Japanese fire was encountered and the troops advanced inland easily. Suddenly the troops were being ambushed by concealed enemy positions. There were over 2,000 dead on the first day and the majorityof them were Americans.

There were five Marines and one Navy Corpsman photographed raising the U.S. flag on Mt. Suribachi by Joe Rosenthal on February 23, 1945. "Flags of Our Fathers" is the story of three of the six surviving servicemen, John "Doc" Bradley (Ryan Phillippe), Pvt. ReneGagnon (Jesse Bradford), and Pvt. Ira Hayes (Adam Beach), who fought in the battle totake Iwo Jima. It was one of the most bloody battles of the war and the picture became one of the most famous pictures of the entire war . I[t took another month to take this island].Three of the marines were killed in action and the other three serviceman were taken out of the battle and flown home. These men were used to help sell war bonds. It also shows the effect that the memories of war would have on these veterans for the rest of their lives.

Most Americans thought that the flag raising tool place at the end of the battle when infact the picture was taken on the fifth day of a 35 day battle. Iwo Jima was one of the most strategic islands of the whole war. It was an airbase for the Japanese and it was also a radio station that served an an advanced warning station whenever American bombers from the south were approaching. The Americans needed this base so that they could use it as a staging area for their bombers whenever they could afford to invade the Japanese mainland. It was actually the first battle of World War Two that took place on Japanese soil.

With no chance for victory the Japanese just wanted to inflict the most amount of casualtiesthat they could.They were well dug in with a system of interlocking tunnels and their big gun positions were shielded by steel doors that swung shut after every firing.

The battle resulted in 29 Medals of Honor winners, but at what a terrible price. The marines lost one third of their of their whole WWII combat deaths during this battle and almost all of the 22,000 Japanese died, some by their own hands.The film depicts what the true motive wasi n bringing the three remaining servicemen home. The Government was in dire straits because they had run out of lenders for the war effort and their funds were drying up rather quickly.The Rosenthal picture that was taken on Iwo Jima sparked the public opinion of the war effort and the money that those men raised turned the financial tide.

Of the three servicemen who returned home to a hero's welcome only one,Doc, seemed to havea happy life and ended up being a successful undertaker. Gagnon ended up with a lot of deadend jobs and ended up being bitter for the rest of his life. And Haynes returned to his old reservation where he would end up literally drinking himself to death.

The film made the top ten list of the National Board of Review. Eastwood also earned a GoldenGlobe nomination for Directing. The film was nominated for two Academy Awards - for Best Soundand Sound Editing. I thought that it was a story that had to be told and Eastwood did a good job of putting this story on film. It seems to me that the older he gets, the better he gets.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

The Guns of Navarone

The guns of Navarone was a 1961 movie about a British Commando team that is sent on almost impossible mission of destroying a massive German gun emplacement after crossing occupied Greek territory. This film was directed by J. Lee Thompson and had some of the biggest stares of the day were in it. This movie was based on a well known 1957 novel about World War Twoby Scottish writer Alistair MacLean.The sweeping landscape photography and several cultural touches truly captured the beauty and flavor of Greece and its proud people. Even today, the people of Greece, hold this film in high praise.

It starred Gregory Peck, David Niven and Anthony Quinn. The plot tells of an Allied commando team to destroy a seemingly impregnable German fortress that threatens Allied naval ships in the Aegean Sea, and prevents 2,000 isolated British troops from being rescued.

The film opens with an aerial view of the Greek Islands, and a narrator setting the sceneThe year is 1943, and 2000 British soldiers are holed up on the island of Kheros in the Aegean near Turkey. Rescue by the Royal Navy is impossible because of massive guns on the nearby island of Navarone. Time is short, because the Germans are expected to launch an assault on the British forces, to draw Turkey into the war on the Axis' side.

Using airstrikes in trying to dislodge these guns prove fruitless, so a team of commandos has been assembled to try and go in and destroy these monster emplacements. Lead by Major RoyFranklin (Anthony Quayle), they are Capt. Keith Mallory (Gregory Peck), Andrea Stavros(Anthony Quinn), a Colonel in the defeated Greek army, Corporal Miller (David Niven),an explosives expert, Greek-American street tough Spyros Pappadimos (James Darren) and"Butcher" Brown (Stanley Baker), an engineer and expert knife fighter.

They sail across the Aegean Sea disguised as Greek fisherman. After blowing up a German patrol boat Malloy confides in Miller that Stavros blames Miller for the death of his wife and children and intends to kill him after the war. After the ship that they are on capsizes during a violent storm Franklin is badly injured and later the injuries lead to gangrene after they had to climb a steep cliff. One of the central points of this film is to carry Franklin to safety despite the apparent problem that

Franklin's injuries will slow them down. Malloy lies to Franklin about the mission. Soon afterwords they are attacked by German soldiers and Andrea is left behind with his snippier rifle to help in their escape. They then end up meeting with the local resistance fighters,Spyros's sister Mania [Irene Papas] and her fiend Anna [Gia Scala].

But throughout the next couple of days their mission is always delayed by the onslaught of German soldiers who always seem to know where they are at. They are finally capturedand escape, but it was necessary to leave Franklin behind so that he could get medical attention. They then discover that their explosives, that they had saved from the shipwreak, had been sabotaged. Miller figures out that Anna is the saboteur and Marie shoots her as a price that she has to pay for being disloyal. It's a touching scene that almost leaves you feeling sorry for Anna because of the reason that she betrayed them.

The final scenes have the team spilitting up to achieve their objective. All of them escape to a waiting boat except for Pappadimos and Brown who had given their lives creating adistraction.The guns and fortifications are destroyed in a spectacular explosion.Stavros,who has fallen in love with Maria, decides to return to Navarone with her and shakes hands with Mallory, seemingly having given up his plan to kill him.

The fans of Gregory Peck were not disappointed when this film was released. There is plenty of action and the ways that the characters, as diverse as they were, seemed to fit together made this one of the most enjoyable war films that were ever produced. Even most of the Germans portrayed were more realistic of everyday human being instead of the usual sub human beast that are often seen in other movies.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

The Maltese Falcon --One Of Humphrey Bogart's Greatest Films

Sam Spade, a private detective, gets involved in a murderous hunt for a valuable statuette. The release date for this film was October 18, 1941 just a few short weeks before the beginning of World War Two. It was directed by first timer John Houston and adapted from Dashiell Hammeff's novel of 1930. The Maltese Falcon is now known as one of the best classic's of all times.

Private eye Sam Spade [Humphrey Bogart] and his partner Miles Archer [Jerome Cowan] are hired by Bridget O'Shaughnessy [Mary Astor] to follow a man named Floyd Thursby, who supposedly ran off with her younger sister. After accepting the case Spade has a gut feeling that tells him that this women may end up getting him in trouble. Less than 24 hours later Spade is informed by the police that his partner, Miles Archer was killed tailing Thursby. Soon Spade is informed that he is the main suspect in the killing of Thursby who they assume killed Archer.
That following morning Spade is visited by Archer's widow with whom he had been having an affair. She thinks that Spade had killed her husband so that they could spend more time together. He tells her to leave and then informs his sectary to remove any trace of Archer belongings out of the office. Later that same day Spade is visited by a man named Joel Cairo[Peter Lorre] who offers him $5,000 if he could retrieve a figurine of a black bird. And he then is again contacted by O'Shaughnessy, but Spade senses somewhat of a connection between her and Cairo. After Spade drops a hint of his meeting with Cairo, she informs Spade that she must meet with Cairo and asks Spade for his assistance in arranging a meeting.

It seems that Spade's gut instinct is right because Cairo has offered O'Shaughnessy money for the black bird figurine, but O'Shaughnessy insists she does not have it at that moment.The subject of a mysterious man comes up and both Cairo and O'Shaughnessey seemed to be scared by him. After a verbal argument ensues the police show up at Spade's office and inform him that they knew about the affair that he had been having with Archer's wife. After they hear the screaming coming from his apartment the police intervene and take Cairo into custody for some questing.

The next day Spade meets Cairo but notices that some one is following him. He discovers that this man works for the mysterious mister "G" who turns out to be a man named Casper Gutman who tells Spade that he will pay very handsomely for the black bird. He tells Spade that the bird is very valuable and that he has been looking for it for the past seventeen years. Spade then appears to be getting dizzy, but he did not realize that Gutman had drugged him until it was too late.

When Spade awakens he returns to his office and tells his sectary Effie the story about the Maltese Falcon, the black bird. A little while later a person named Captain Jacobe shows up at his office injured. He is carrying a package that drops to the floor as he then dies of the gunshot wounds that he sustained earlier. Inside the package was the figurine falcon. Spade stores the item at the bus station lost luggage. He returns home and finds some guests waiting for him. One of them, Gutman, hands Spade $10,000 cash in exchange for the bird. It is in this final meeting that Spade learns the truth about who was behind some of the murders that had taken place. Spade finally gives the figurine to Gutman for the $10,000 but upon examination it turns out to be a fake.

Afterwords Spade calls the police and informs them of what has taken place and then he finds out who killed his partner and the reason why. He turns her over to the police and the movie ends when Archer's widow shows up again at his office.

Actually this was the third filming of the Maltese Falcon but it is the one that is best remembered and the only one that turned out to be a classic. This film is one of those "rare must see pictures" of all times. Writing about it does not do it justice.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

The Best Female Police Duo

One of the most compelling and convincing TV drama's ever to hit the airways was a sitcom about two New York City female detectives. The release date for this show was 25 March 1982.It's ironic that one of best shows on T.V. was actually canceled after the 82/83 season, but after viewers wrote into CBS protesting the cancellation, "Cagney and Lacey" was reborn again in March of 1984 and would run until 1988. Cagney and Lacey was directed by Ted Post with writers Barbara Avedon and Barbara Corday.

It is considered to be one of the first American television's serious
drama series with two female leads. The show starred Sharon Gless and veteran television actress Tyne Daly as N.Y.City police detectives who led very different lives. Gless played the part of Christine Cagney who was a single, career and goal seeking woman while Daly,who played Mary Beth Lacey, was a married women who was also a mother. Al Waxman starred as their supervisor, Lt.Bert Samuels. Dick O'Neilplayed the part of Cagney's alcoholic father and Dan Shor played the part of Detective Jonah Newman from 1985 to 1986.

During the years that Cagney and Lacey were on their would be some episodes that were considered groundbreaking by some and taboo by others. The bombing of an abortion clinic that some affiliate stations refused to air. The birth of Lacey's third child and probably the most controversial episode 'The City is Burning' that was based on the 1986 racial incident in Queens Howard Beach. The use of racial slurs such as the word "nigger" that are taboo in prime-time. Another episode that brought cries of indifference dealt with the subject of Aids in the school system which is still a touchy subject in some districts even today.

Before Cagney and Lacey there was a stereotyped conception of what a police woman was. She was often seen as a person who would only escort prisoners or who would be passing out some parking tickets. The idea that a woman could reach a high rank in the department was almost impossible. What is really extraordinary is the way their differences were so clearly established, and yet we know without question that they could rely on each other completely.

This show helped change the conception of what women could do in police work. Cagney and Lacey were two women who were treated as real people.They experienced most of the situations that only two people, who work so closely together day after day, would encounter. That is why Cagney And Lacey were the first and best female police duo on T.V.

Monday, January 14, 2008

One Of The Best Cop Based Films Ever

The American Gangster is a movie about how a detective,Richard Crowe staring as Det. Richie Roberts,works to bring down the drug empire of Frank Lucas, played by Denzel Washington, who was a heroin kingpin from Manhattan. Det. Richie has a bad reputation in the police department because he turns in $1 million dollars in drug money that he found. Any officer who would not share such a find with his fellow officers is considered not very trustworthy.

Frank Lucas' career would be an ideal case study for a business school. Inheriting a crime empire from his famous boss Bumpy Johnson, he cornered the New York drug trade with successful capitalist strategies. He personally flew to Southeast Asia to buy his product directly from the suppliers, used a clever importing scheme to get it into the United States, and sold it at higher purity and lower cost than anyone else was able to. He smuggled the drugs into the country in the coffins of dead Americans soldiers coming home from Viet-Nam. At one point he was making upwards of one million dollars a day.At the end, he was worth more than $150 million, and got a reduced sentence by cutting a deal to expose three-quarters of the NYPD narcotics officers as corrupt.

In this film Frank does not play the part of the typical stereotyped drug lord. He does not wear any fancy rings on his fingers or any gold around his neck. He is married to a loving wife and even takes his mother to church on Sunday. The authorities take almost forever to even identify him and even then they were still hesitant because they did not believe that the Mafia drug trade in Harlem could be taken over by such a person. But Frank did not only take over the drug trade, he actually lived to talk about it.

On the other hand, Detective Richie,is running into his own roadblocks by the police themselves. It seems that he is on a one man crusade and he will not bend. His own colleague [Josh Brolin] threatens him, but Det. Richie is determined to bring Lucas down.

Ridley Scott does a superb job as the director of this film which is in fact a true story.Both Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe are perfect in the criminal and cop relationship. This film is actually about a successful business enterprise that just happens to be illegal, not unlike some of the recent scandals involving some American corporations. I would classify this film as one of the best cop based films ever.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

No Country for Old Men Movie Review

Miramax Films presents a film written and directed by Ethan Coen and Joel Coen. It is a critically acclaimed 2007 film adaptation of the novel of the same name by Cormac McCarthy. The film features Tommy Lee Jones, Josh Brolin, and Javier Bardem.

If you like the kind of film that surprises you and takes away your breath at the same time,this is it. It tells the story of a drug deal gone very wrong and the ensuing cat-and-mouse drama as three men crisscross each others paths in the desert landscape of 1980 West Texas. Violence and mayhem ensue after a hunter stumbles upon some dead bodies, a stash of heroin and more than $2 million in cash near the Rio Grande.

The local sheriff, Ed Tom Bell (Tommy Lee Jones), tells of the changing times as the region becomes increasingly violent. The key character of Anton Chigurh (Javier Bardem) and his weapon of choice — cattle gun — are introduced as he escapes police custody and steals a car by using the cattle gun to kill the car's driver. But at the same time a hunter hunting pronghorn come across a collection of corpses and one Mexican near death which was the result of a drug deal gone bad. The hunter Llewwlyn Moss [Josh Brolin] also finds two million dollars in a suitcase and decides that he will keep the money and leave the Mexican to die, but has a change of heart and returns with some water for the man.

But this good deed sets off a cat and mouse game in which the hunter and the hunted switch roles as a gang of Mexicans,Chigurh,Moss and Bell chase each other and the two million dollars across the Texas and Mexican landscape. But unbeknown to Moss, Chigurh, who was hired to retrieve the money , has a transponder hidden in it. And Chigurh, who is a professional hit man, will kill anyone who gets in his way.

In the meantime Moss, not knowing anything about the transponder, sends his wife Carla Jean [Kelly MacDonald] out of town and jumps from motel to motel trying to elude not only Chigurh but also the Mexicans. While all of this is happening, Bell main concern is to try and protect Moss after he finds him. Chigurh is closing in on Moss because of the tracking device.

Chigurh ends up killing some of the Mexicans and a rival hit-man named Carson Wells who is played by Woody Harrelson. Moss arranges a meeting with Carla Jean in El Pasco to give her the money and tries to get her out of danger. All of the action now takes place at the motel when all of the main characters converge there, but not at the same time. Moss is killed by the Mexicans in a bloody shootout. Sheriff Bell shows up and enters a room to discover that the vent covers have been removed and knows that the money had been removed and then leaves, not knowing that Chigurh is hiding in that same motel.

Bell finally gets the opportunity to visit his uncle Ellis [Barry Corbin] and informs him that he is going to retire because he is getting leery of the changing times, but Ellis accuses him of just being vain.
Some time later Chiguth confronts the widowed Carla Jean and offers her the same "coin flip"opportunity that he had offered the gas station owner, Carla Jean refuses and in the next scene it shows Chigurh examining the soles of his boots, as if to indicate that he had committed another murder. He ends up in a car accident but he manages to elude the police and escapes again.
At the very end of this story Bell is reflecting on the many choices he had in his life. He tells his wife[Tess Harper] about the two dreams that he has had while he is experiencing an uneasy retirement at home.
Highly praised by critics, the film received several Golden Globe Award nominations. Roger Ebert called it "as good a film as the Coen brothers... have ever made and gave it a four star review and it appeared on many of critics top 10 list of 2007.It took Best Picture at 2008 Critics’ Choice Awards.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

The Ultimate Love Story

Away From Her is an English-Canadian film which debuted at the 2006 Toronto International Film Festival and also played in the Premier category at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival. The feature-length directorial debut of English-Canadian actress Sarah Polley, the film is based on Alice Munro's short story "The Bear Came Over the Mountain."

It was executive produced by Atom Egoyan and distributed by Lionsgate Films.The cast also includes Olympia Dukakis, Michael Murphy, Wendy Crewson, Alberta Watson, and Kristen Thomson.

The film stars Gordon Pinsent and Julie Christie as a couple whose marriage is tested when Christie's character begins to suffer from Alzheimer's and moves into a nursing home, where she transfers her affections,after loosing all memory of her husband, to another man, Aubrey, a wheel chair-bound mute who also is a patient at the nursing home.

This film starts out as we are observing Fiona [Julie Christie] and her retired husband Grant [Gorden Pinsent] have just returned home from a cross country skiing vacation and they are doing one of the many necessary everyday tasks of washing dishes. Grant hands his wife a frying pan and Fiona puts it away, right into the freezer. She is slowly slipping away into the beginning stages of Alzheimer's disease. After she gets lost near her own home she makes the decision that she will check herself into an institution.

To Grant's dismay Fiona is not allowed any visitors for the first 30 days. Unbearable as it is, Grant drops her off at the institution and then he returns 30 days later. At first everything seems to be okay with her until he discovers that his wife actually doesn't recognizes him.

This film is a generous and a deceptively simple portrait brought to life. During the first few months of her confinement she keeps on slipping further and further away, and you can see that distant look in her eyes. Then one day when Grant is visiting her he notices that she is wearing a garish sweater, something that he knew she would never wear. At that point, Grant knows that his wife is gone forever. Not physically but still gone.

This was Sarah Polley first directorial debut and she did a amazing job with such a delicate subject matter. And I say Bravo to the cast and crew for turning in such a superb performance. This film was a true ode to the realities of true love.

The film received vastly favorable reviews from critics and earned Julie Christie the 2007 Critics Choice Award as well and a best actress nomination for the 65th Golden Globe awards. This was in so many ways a true love story.

Friday, January 11, 2008

One Of The Best Sitcoms Ever Produced

Who could ever forget one of the best T.V. shows of all times. Taxi was a sitcom that dealt with the crew of a New York City taxicab company that go about there job while they dream of greater things in life. The show ran from 1978 until 1983. It was one of the best comedy series ever produced for television. The show was produced by the John Charles Walters Company and funded by Paramount.

Taxi Judd Hirsch's Alex Reiger was a main character, but his importance seemed secondary to the centrality of the ensemble and the Sunshine Cab Company itself. He was the one that everyone turned to for advice. The shows success was due to its excellent writing and award-winning directing using his innovative four-camera technique, and its largely unknown but talented cast Danny DeVito's Louie DePalma soon became one of the most despised men on T.V.,possibly the most unredeemable and worthless louse of a character ever to reside on the small screen. Nothing seems beneath him. He lives with his mother and TV guide ranked De Palma first on the list of the 50 greatest TV characters of all time.

The show launched successful careers for for Danny DeVito and Christopher Lloyd who played Reverand Jim Ignatowski, the zany and unpredictable 60's burned out character. He was once a hard-working, serious student at Harvard University, but one bite of a drug laden brownie was enough to get him hooked and send him into a downward spiral. He occasionally exhibits unexpected talents, such as the time he and Elaine were at a party and Jim sits down and plays the piano masterfully. As he stands up after his recital, and with the perplexed look on his face, he turns to Elaine and states "I must have taken music lesions someplace" The man is definitely in his own world and that's what makes his character so lovable.TV Guide placed the character of Ignatowski 32nd on its list of the 50 greatest TV characters of all times.

It also helped the careers of Tony Danza who played Tony Banta and Marilu Henneras the sexy Elaine O'Connor-Nardo. One character, Andy Kaufman who played Latka Graves died of cancer in 1984. Another character Bobby Wheeler, the conceited actor, played by Jeff Conway, has appeared in various shows throughout the years. He has had some problems with drug addition and we all wish him the best of luck in his personal and professional life.

Taxi is one of the most lauded television shows in American history. During its run, the sitcom was nominated for 31 Emmy Awards and won 18, including three for Outstanding Comedy Series. It was also nominated for 25 Golden Globes, with four wins (three for best TV Series -Musical/Comedy). In 1979, it received the Humanities Prize in the 30 minute category. Despite winning fourteen Emmy Awards in only five seasons on TV, the program's ratings were rock-bottom for its final seasons. It thrives in syndication and is still well loved by many viewers and I personally think that Taxi was one of the best sitcoms ever produced.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Who Is The Highest Paid Hollywood Actresses

Reese Witherspoon is actually a descendant of John Witherspoon who just happened to be one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. Do you think that her somewhat of a free spirit attitude is inherited?

Laura Jeanne Reese Witherspoon was born on March 22, 1976 at Southern Baptist Hospital (now Memorial Medical Center) in New Orleans, Louisiana. She was the second child born to Dr. John Witherspoon and Betty Reese. Her father was a military surgeon specializing in the ear, nose and throat. Her mother was a Registered Nurse who later became a Ph.D in pediatric nursing. Reese spent the first four years of her life in
Wiesbaden, Germany where her father served as a lieutenant colonel in the US Army reserves. Shortly after, John moved the family back to the States, settling in Nashville, Tennessee.

Witherspoon broke into modeling and lands an acting gig at age 7, shooting a TV commercial for a florist. She continued doing local T.V.
commercials and takes first place in a Ten-State Talent Fair at age 11. Then at the tender age 14, Witherspoon debuts in the coming-of-age drama The Man in the Moon, giving her first onscreen kiss to costar Jason London. She makes her television premiere the same year in the Diane Keaton directed drama Wildflower. In 1996, Witherspoon's performance in Freeway established her as a up and coming rising star and led to roles in three major 1998 movies: Overnight Delivery, Pleasantville, and Twilight. In the following year Witherspoon appeared in the critically acclaimed Election, which garnered her a Golden Globe nomination and saw her breakout role as Elle Woods in the box office hit, that I thoroughly enjoyed, Legally Blonde. In 2002 she starred in Sweet Home Alabama, which became her biggest commercial film success to date. 2003 saw her
return as lead actress and executive producer of Legally Blonde 2. In 2005, Witherspoon received worldwide attention and praise for her portrayal of June Carter Cash in Walk the Line, a role that earned her an Academy Award, a Golden Globe Award and a Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Actress. And all of this just before her 30th birthday.

She married actor Ryan Phillippe in 1999 and they have two beautiful children Ava and Deacon. But after only a few years together they got divorced in 2007.[The couple first met at Witherspoon's 21st birthday party.]

In 2004, Witherspoon starred in Vanity Fair, adapted from the 19th-century classic novel Vanity Fair and directed by Mira Nair and early-2005,Shestarred alongside Mark Ruffalo in the romantic comedy Just Like Heaven where she played Elizabeth Masterson, a dedicated San Francisco doctor who is involved in a car accident and becomes a spirit, her spirit, returns to her old apartment and she later finds true love there. And in 2006 she stared in the political thriller Rendention and it was her first appearance in two years and in 2007 she started filming for the comedy Four Christmasses.

In 2007, she was selected by People and the entertainment news program Access Hollywood as one of the best dressed female stars of the year.[86][87] That same year, Witherspoon established herself as the highest-paid actress in the American film industry, earning US$15 to US$20 million per film. What an amazing feat to accomplish considering the fact that Witherspoon is still so very young.Of course the competetion for this covited award seems to changing every few months. What a great race to be in. Names like Julie Roberts, Nicole Kidman, Nicole Kidman, Drew Barrymore, Renee Zellweger, Angelina Jolie and Cameron Diaz, just to name a few.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

The Best Black And White Film Ever Made

When one thinks of black and white movies,they associate some of the films featured on Turner's Classic Movies but there was actually a film made on purpose in 1993 that showed that color is not always the best choice. Schindler's list was a film directed Steven Spielberg and stared Liam Neeson as Oskar Schindler ,who was a factory owner in Poland in World War 11. It was based on the book "Schindler's Ark" by Thomas Keneally, Schindler actually used Jews to start his own factory but once he witnesses the horror that was being bestowed upon the Jews by the Nazi's, hedecides to start saving them. There were also unforgettabel performances by Ralph Fiennes as the SS Officer and Ben Kingsley as Schindler's accountant Itshak Stern.

The film starts off to reveal a womanizing, Nazi business man who profited off of slave labor. The Nazi business man is of course Oskar Schindler. Oskar who was an unsuccessful businessman who arrived from Czechoslovakia to take advantage of cheap labor. He has a love for good wine, beautiful women, and pursues happiness through the success of his business. But while he is on his journey to a successful business, millions of Jews were being killed during a time which is labeled as one of the darkest periods of World War 11. As Oskar made money, untold numbers of people were being murdered. That's when the self-centered, often money hungry Oskar decides to step and gives up his goal of having a successful business to save the lives of over 1,000 Jews.

Schindler pleases the Nazis and enjoys his new-found wealth and status as "Herr Direktor," while Stern handles all administration. Stern even suggests that Schindler hire Jews instead of Poles because they cost less because the Jews themselves get nothing and their wages are paid to the Reich.In the meantime, Stern forges a number of documents that protect the Jews from being sent to the concentration camps.

When SS Officer Amon Goth arrives he is ordered to clear out the Krsakow ghetto by any means possible. Schindler befriends him [after watching a massacre] and convinces him, through bribery, to spare the lives of his workers so that they could move into a sub camp. But as fate would have it,Goth receives orders from Berlin to destroy every thing and ship the remaining Jews to Auschwitz. Schindler convinces Goth that he needs his workers in his old home of Zwittau-Brinnlitz. Goth sees an opportunity to make more money and agrees.

Schindler has to intervene once again at Auschwitz, because of a misdirected train, where the women are now being gassed. He bribes the camp commander to spare the women. Once they arrive in Zwittau-Brinnlitz Schindler takes firm control through the use of bribing even more Nazi officials.But the end of the war is coming and he must now flee the oncoming Soviet Red Army. He leaves in the middle of the night with his wife. We learn that the survivors and descendants of the 1,100 Jews saved by Schindler now number over 6,000.

This film has to be one of the most important films of the 20th century. It wasdone almost entirely in black and white with one of the few exceptions, a little girl wearing a red coat. This film won 7 Oscars and The American Film Institute voted it #9 on their AFI's 100 Years... 100 Movies series, and in 2007 was voted in at #8 for the tenth anniversary list. In addition, the American Film Institute voted Liam Neeson's Schindler as the 13th greatest movie hero of all time, while Ralph Fiennes' Göth was voted the 15th greatest villain in the AFI's 100 Years, 100 Heroes and Villains series. In 2006 it was selected as the 3rd most inspiring movie of all time by AFI's 100 Years.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

A Tribute To Eddie Murphy

Since I just read that Eddie Murphy was just married, I figured that it was about time that I paidtribute to one of the best and most talented comics that has entertained us throughout the years.

Eddie Murphy was born in Brooklyn,New York on the 3rd of April 1961 . His father died when Eddiewas quite young and he,his brother and step brother were raised by his mother who was a telephone company employee along with his stepfather who worked as a foreman at a Breyer's Ice cream plant. Even as a young person his comic talents were evident and by the ripe old age of 15 he was writingand performing at youth centers and local bars. When he made it to the Manhattan Comic Strip his talents were recognized by the club's co-owners [Robert Wachs and Richard Tienken] and they agreed to help Eddie and manage his career. The got Eddie an audition for Saturday Night Live in 1975. He was eventually cast as a featured member and became a full fledged star by the end of his first season.

His first big movie success came in 1982 when he, along with Nick Nolte, stared in 48 hours.Then in1984 he stared in Beverly Hills Cop, the movie that would put Eddie into the superstar status.This film would would earn him his third Golden Globe nomination and prove to be one of the biggest domestic money makers in motion picture history. His portrayal as a Detroit cop in pursuit of his friends murderers earned him his signature character that would stick with him for decades.And one of my favorite movies had him paired with John Landis in the 1988 film 'Coming To America"

But after a few major hits and a few lackluster films his career seemed to be at a standstill.Harlem Nights [1989] and Another 48 hrs [1990] and his almost forgotten performance in Boomerang[1992] did very little to resuscitate his career. But a man of such comic genus could not bekept down for long and his remake of Jerry Lewis's "The Nutty Professor" brought Eddie's drawing power back into swing. His performance in Doctor Dolittle [1998] Mulan and Bowfinger proved that he could also perform in family oriented humor. IN 2001 he stared in the animated smash Shrek.
In 2007, he won the Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of fictitious soul singer James "Thunder" Early in Dreamgirls[1], and received a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for the same role.Murphy's work as a voice actor includes Thurgood Stubbs in The PJs, Donkey in the Shrek series and the dragon Mushu in Disney's Mulan. In some of his films, he plays multiple roles in addition to his main character, including Coming to America, the Nutty Professor films.

Eddie Murphy had thrilled and entertained movie audiences for decades and will continue to contribute his many talents for years to come. This multi talented actor deserves as much recognition for his comic performances that he has supplied throughout the years. A tribute to Eddie Murphy!

Eddie Murphy celebrated New Year's Day [2008] by tying the knot with film producer Tracey Edmonds.The pair exchanged vows Tuesday on a private island off Bora Bora in French Polynesia in front of a small group of family and friends, their representatives told People magazine.

Murphy and Edmonds began dating last fall and were engaged in July.Murphy, 46, has five children from his marriage to Nicole Mitchell Murphy, who filed for divorce in 2005. He also has a daughter with Spice Girls singer Melanie Brown. Edmonds, 40, has two sons from her 13-year marriage to singer Kenneth "Baby face" Edmonds. As head of Edmonds Entertainment Group Inc., she has produced the film and television series "Soul Food."