Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Briefs and a history lesson

I'm surprised nobody noticed the other day when I posted about Reagan's birthday a day late. In my defense, I was thinking it was actually the 6th when it was actually the 7th. Life's been hectic lately, which will explain the even more erratic than normal quality of the posting and making stupid mistakes like that.

It'll also explain why I missed that Charade was on yesterday evening. I saw the film at the end of last month when TCM ran it as part of a night of Henry Mancini scores, and had wanted to blog about it when it showed up again. Somehow, I just didn't see it on the schedule. At least it's coming up again in April.

TCM's schedule page claims that All the King's Men, airing tonight at 8:00 PM, is not available on DVD from the TCM shop. Amazon lists it as being available in limited quantity, which would imply that the DVD is now out of print. They also claim it's available via instant streaming, which of course I don't do being on satellite internet. Don't mix it up with the 2006 remake.

Not being able to think of anything to blog about today, and with thankfully nobody dying to write an obituary post about, I looked through this day in history. In 1531, English King Henry VIII was recognized as the ultimate head of the Church of England. This period has been covered in a couple of movies, with the most notable being A Man For All Seasons. I think the Charles Laughton look at Henry VIII's life, The Private Life of Henry VIII, starts off just as Henry is having Anne Boleyn executed. Anne is the subject of Anne of the Thousand Days, but I haven't seen that one in a while and can't remember where in the whole religious conflict with Rome that one begins.

Our other event in history also deals with Catholicism. On February 11, 1858, Bernadette Soubirous had what she claimed was a vision of the Virgin Mary in Lourdes, France. This was given the Hollywood treatment in 1943 with The Song of Bernadette, which won Jennifer Jones a Best Actress Oscar. I'm reminded of something that happened in my high school German class. We were supposed to write in German in a journal every day for the first few minutes, and one day I was writing about something I had seen on TV the previous night that I thought was tacky. Of course, I didn't know the German word for "tacky" (apparently the word I wanted was geschmacklos which literally translates as "tasteless"). My German teacher asked me why I wanted to know, so I mentioned that I had seen a TV show the previous night about Lourdes, and how there were people selling little plastic Virgin Marys that you could unscrew the crown from and fill with holy water. My teacher thought, and finally responded, "That is tacky." She never did tell me the word for tacky.

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