Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Colbert destroys Trump over his superhero fantasy

Yep. Conservative President Trump openly fantasized in public. Yesterday in front of state governors, Trump said he would have run in to face a school shooter without a gun. We need Stephen Colbert to have some fun with this. Check out the video below.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Lawrence O' Donnell demolishes conservative Trump's fantasy of arming school teachers

It sounds like a clever idea to protect our kids from school shooters. Arm school teachers. It's an idea that comes from conservative Republicans. Yesterday, conservative President Trump proposed it. Well, when you think about it, we realize this is fantasy. Lawrence O' Donnell destroys this fantasy in this MSNBC video. He tells you a couple of problems. Crossfire. Taking down a shooter armed with an assault weapon with a handgun. Conservatives, I can agree that a very smart robot could defend our kids. But since that technology is science fiction and probably a couple hundred years away, arming teachers is dangerous.

Black Panther review

"With great power comes great responsibility" has been a theme from Stan Lee's Marvel Comics since Spider-Man. It is also one of the themes in Marvel Studio's film, Black Panther.

The film starts off with a couple of flashbacks. We're introduced to the fictional African nation of Wakanda. It has been secretly thriving due to the inhabitants use of a meteor that fell in its territory. It contained a raw material which is a power source called vibranium. The people were able to use the vibranium to power their high technology  society.   The movie then flashes to the early nineties where Wakanda King T'Chaka is investigating a theft of vibranium in an Oakland neighborhood. It's here where we get our introduction to the antagonist N' Jadaka who will later be played as an adult by Michael B. Jordan. I'm not going to go into the details regarding him since that's  a spoiler.

The movie then moves forward to the events right after Captan America: Civil War (2016). And no, you don't have to watch that film to get the plot but it would help. Anyway, T"Chaka (John Dani) is assassinated. This causes his son, T'Challa (Chadwick Boseman) to inherit the throne. He's protected by a couple of bad ass female warriors, Nakia (Lupita Nyong'o) and Okoye (Danai Gurira). And his sister Shuri (Letitia Wright) assists the new king as a "Q" type scientist. In the movie she's lovable and steals the show.

Director Ryan Coogler and Joe Robert Cole have created an epic, legendary script.  However, Director  Coogler's direction is way too busy.  He relies a lot on fast cutting which along with the branching battles at the end of the movie create confusion.  And I do appreciate the use of real African languages, that gave the film a realistic feel.   At times though it added to the confusion as it could be difficult to track the fictional names of the characters.   I suppose its being raised as an English speaking American so that could be my fault. 

That being said, this film is much like The Post.  (2017)  The last half of the movie is where it really shines.   That's because Coogler and Cole add more to their story than just a good guy fights a bad guy.  At first, the oppression of African Americans comes off heavy handed but the writers deftly turn that into one of the motivations for N' Jadaka.  He wants to use Wakanda's might to establish his form of justice on the world.  There's more to N' Jadaka's motivation which makes this antagonist, more three dimensional than most movie villains.  T' Challa is faced with governing as a compassionate man while trying to address the conflict of his country being isolationist versus helping mankind.  Yes, that's the "With great power comes great responsibility." 

Black Panther is an interesting and exciting type of cinematic fusion of comic book action, and Shakespearean drama.   It's King Arthur on the African continent.  The grade is A minus. 

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Historian Max Boot says conservative President Trump is ignoring the worst attack on America since 9/11

Author and historian Max Boot has written in the Washington Post that conservative President Donald Trump is ignoring the Russian meddling of the 2016 election. (Washington Post) After Special Counsel Robert Mueller filed an indictment against Russian nationals on Friday, Trump has been busy in a Tweet storm of comments, But conservative President Trump said nothing bad about his best buddy, Russian President Vladimir Putin.

i agree with Boot. Conservative Trump's inaction to do anything to protect America from future Russian action is about three things. One, he's so narcissistic that Trump believes Russian meddling taints his shocking victory in 2016. The second one which is deeply disturbing but has support is that Trump is trying to hide his criminal behavior. I'm talking that his campaign colluded with the Russians. And folks, there is evidence of this. We know from Trump Jr. that the Trump company has received significant investment from the Russians. We know that the Trump campaign weakened the GOP's platform about assisting Ukraine in its struggle against Russia. Only Putin would care about that. Not your average American. Third, there was the June 2016 Trump tower meeting between Trump campaign officials, Paul Manafort, Trump Jr., and son-in-law Jared Kushner and Russians. The email setting it up expressly said it was about Russian government assistance to help the Trump campaign. Plus, there is much more that Muller knows than what has been reported in the news. Third, conservative Trump wants the Russians to interfere in future American elections to help his fellow conservatives win.

Wake up America. Keep a free United States. Vote liberal Democrat if you want to live.

Boot was on MSNBC's Morning Joe. Check out the video.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

How to get a safer America from gun violence


So, I just listened to Conservative Republican President Donald Trump address the nation over the Florida school gun shooting. As expected, he was all talk and no action. Yes, he "expressed" condolences, i.e. he read his speech without heart. But as I listened I wondered if Trump was going to propose any legislative action to try to correct the plague of gun violence. All he did was propose a meeting with law enforcement and governors. Talk is cheap.

Yesterday, former Republican congressman David Jolly said if you want gun control you should vote the Republicans out of Congress. (CNN video below.) Amen. Conservative Republicans' allegiance is to the National Rifle Association.

Let me go further. Want clean air and water? VOTE LIBERAL DEMOCRAT IF YOU WANT TO LIVE. Want a cooler world where humanity is not threatened by global warming? VOTE LIBERAL DEMOCRAT IF YOU WANT TO LIVE. Want a free and just America? VOTE LIBERAL DEMOCRAT IF YOU WANT TO LIVE.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Conservative President Trump protects Russians from American sanctions

Rachel Maddow of MSNBC details how conservative Republican President Trump is sabotaging sanctions against Russia. Her story is factually correct, conservatives. Check out the story below. Trump's administration also has virtually no plan to prevent the Russians from interfering in our future elections like they did in 2016.

Wake up America. It's clear that the Russians have something over Trump. Did he receive financing for his businesses? After all, Donald Trump Jr. once boasted of substantial Russian investment in the Trump companies. (Washington Post: Trump's business ties to Russia) The Pee Tape? Quid pro quo for Russian assistance in the 2016 election? Remember that the Trump campaign had the GOP platform position on lethal assistance to Ukraine against the Russians watered down. Oh , and don't forget about the infamous Trump Tower meeting between Russians and Trump Jr. son-in-law Jared Kushner where Jr. was told that the Russian government had dirt on opponent Hillary Clinton.

Our country is under attack. This fall, vote liberal Democrat if you want to live. Then impeach.

Happy Valentine's Day , Lindsey Vonn

So, Lindsey Vonn is tweeting from the Winter Olympics and inviting people to be her Valentine.

Yes, Lindsey I want to be your Valentine. Sorry, I am not on Twitter. I just have some simple wishes for you. One. Good luck at the Olympics. And HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!

How about some beautiful romantic jazz? Here's Eliane Elias with the sweet samba "So Nice."

My favorite John Williams Olympic theme

It's time for the Olympics, the Winter Olympics that is. And you will hear from NBC multiple themes previously written by famous film composer John Williams. He would write for four Olympic games. 1984, 1988, 1996 and 2002. (Variety) My favorite is the one for 1988 games called "The Olympic Spirit." Strong melody. Heroic. It's inspiring. Check it out below.

Friday, February 9, 2018

Colbert on Trump's desire for a military parade

Conservative Republican President Trump wants a military parade just like the North Koreans, China and Russia have. Okay, he was inspired by the Bastille Day parade which was about the peasants with pitch forks revolting against the rich. Um. Somebody should educate the orange skin, blonde hair moron about the French Revolution. Anyway, we need satirist Stephen Colbert to comment about it. And he also gives you a history lesson about the Founding Fathers concerns about even having a standing military. Memo to Trump. They were concerned about totalitarian leaders. Ahem. Like you. But I digress. Funny commentary from Colbert below.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

The Shape of Water review

While I get the sexual tension of the monster and the female lead in The Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954), I did not want to see them get it on. And I certainly would have never imagined the two in a forties Hollywood musical number. Yet, director-writer Guillermo del Toro thought these might be good ideas for The Shape of Water. He also mashes three artistic genres that I love. Science Fiction. Film noir. Romantic jazz. That makes this cinematic fusion hard for me to be objective.

The Shape of Water takes place circa 1962. It's the height of the Cold War. Elisa (Sally Hawkins) is a mute who has a lonely existence. We know this because the movie shows one of her routines which is when she bathes, she um... does more than use soap. Okay, it's masturbation. Look, we're going to have a movie about fishman and woman sex, okay? And it ain't going to be rated G. But I digress. Elisa has a couple of friends. One of them is Giles (Richard Jenkins) an apartment neighbor and a closeted gay man who pines for the waiter at a local diner. They live above a movie theater. Yet, Elisa and Giles spend a lot of their time watching old movies with some of them being musicals on TV.

Elisa's other friend is Zelda. (Octavia Spencer) They both work at a top secret America government research lab as janitors. Zelda understands Eliza through sign language and interprets for her. One day, government official Strickland (Michael Shannon) brings in a biological specimen that looks like a cross between man and fish. The Fishman. (Doug Jones) And if you don't know this by now, Elisa befriends the captive Fishman and they have a relationship that is more than platonic.

The film has a wonderful cast. There's one major theme about the Elisa, Giles and Zelda. They're all lonely people. Richard Jenkins as Giles is a down on his luck advertising artist. He's also depressed by his middle age and his closeted gay life. In the sixties, society won't accept him. Octavia Spencer is a woman who doesn't have a perfect home life and the only one she can talk to is Elisa. In her role as Elisa, Sally Hawkins reveals the truth in her emotions. You see she doesn't utter a word. In her face, and body movements we see and feel her feelings. Loneliness. Compassion. Rage. Love. Joy. She's astounding and should receive the Oscar for Best Actress.

Composer Alexandre Desplat's score definitely lets you know he's French. It's romantic, impressionistic and lush. Like the film, he also fuses different styles. Impressionism. Romanticism. Jazz. It even features what sounds like an accordion. Yeah, just the thing to make me think of a romantic French cafe. The score is a perfect companion to del Toro's dream like visuals.

And what photography! Cinematographer Dan Laustsen and del Toro have decided to flavor their movie with film noir. It's brilliant. This is the Cold War. There's a darkness hanging over mankind that comes from the possibility of nuclear annihilation. That's exhibited in the movie's use of shadow and in simple things like Elisa looking through the rain drops on a bus window. Yet, there are rich and deep colors juxtaposed in the darkness. It feels like a dream and to me feels optimistic.

Whereas del Toro's Pacific Rim (2013) was a mash-up of giant robots, monsters and Godzilla movies, The Shape of Water is bolder by a tidal wave. Sorry for that. Del Toro with the help of screenwriter Vanessa Taylor are fusing sexual love between species, Cold War intrigue, film noir and romance. And the film works wonderfully on every level. The movie can be forgiven for heavy handed messages about racism, homophobia and the lack of logic in one scene where Elisa creates an life size aquarium in her apartment. It's more fantasy than science fiction or realistic drama. It's the type of fantasy that makes one think about prejudices and also makes you feel the joy of love.

There are other movies that this film may have been inspired by. Remember the mermaid meets boy in Splash (1984) ? Cinema Paradiso. And of course, del Toro acknowledges the science fiction classic, The Creature from the Black Lagoon. (1954) But The Shape of Water is a beautiful and warm original. The grade is A.

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Trump accuses Democrats of treason for not applauding him

Yesterday, conservative President Trump accused Democrats of treason because they didn't applaud him during his State of the Union speech. (Washington Post Commentary)

“Somebody said ‘treasonous.’ I mean, yeah, I guess, why not? Shall we call that treason? Why not? I mean, they certainly didn’t seem to love our country very much.”

Treason is defined by the Constitution in Article 3. It's giving aid and comfort to the enemy in a time of war. It is not lawful dissent. Trump has now labeled his critics as traitors. This is about as un-American as one can get. In this country, the United States, we have free speech. That's what makes us so great. From the marketplace of ideas, truth can spring out. Only totalitarian governments endorse allegiance to a dictator who demands total loyalty.

It's so serious that I need a laugh to ease the fear that I have for America. In the 1974 Mel Brooks comedy, Blazing Saddles, the totally inept Governor Lepetomane (Mel Brooks) lectures a state congressman for not "harrumphing" enough. Check out the funny clip below.

Friday, February 2, 2018

The Memo is a pretext to fire Rosenstein

So now we know conservative President Trump's next strategic move to throttle the Mueller investigation on whether there was any collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians. It's from the "fire Comey" move. Remember how Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosentein drafted a memo the was critical of FBI Director James Comey? Yeah, he was fired right after its publication by Trump. So today Trump and conservative Republican Cong. Devin Nunes (R-Ca.) release another bogus memo, this time critical of the FBI and the Justice Department. And voila. A reporter asked Trump if he had confidence in Rosenstien. His angry retort. "You figure that one out." CNN. It's the Saturday Night Massacre in slow motion.

Oh and by the way, don't take my word that that "the Memo" was bogus. It's cries about wiretaps on Putin apologist, Trump adviser and goofy Carter Page. It whines about the use of the infamous Steele dossier that it alleges was the basis of FISA warrants. Right away, you know and it's obvious that the Memo cherry picks classified information. There was more information to get those warrants than the Steele dossier.
Huffington Post

Vote liberal Democrat if you want to live.

Here's Rachel Maddow's excellant piece on Carter Page. Yeah, the Russians wanted to recruit him and that was back in 2013. See at 4:00.