Tuesday, December 13, 2005

The Hot Club

Flash! Josh Miller is running. For some kind of office. In Cranston. Steve Laffey is getting nervous.

The Wise Man admitted he's paying $700 a month for his oldest daughter to go to a gym. I asked him "Is that a Jim like me?"

When I arrived at the Hot Club, Bags and his buddy Sue were there, the Warden and his Wardenness Kim and the Wise Man. No sooner than I arrived and they all left. Fear of ink?

The Hot Club employees had a joint Christmas Party and baby shower for Erica last Sunday. It was held at Mike's Lili Marlene. Some of the aftermath ended up at the HC.Our congratulations and wishes for a safe and healthy delivery to Erica.

Another Erika is back in the area doing a radio show in New Bedford. Erika Kay is at Fun 107.1 FM on your dial on Saturdays from 3-8. Our best wishes to eKay.

Mr. Contraire told Ondine "We were talking about you." I said, "No, we weren't, but if we were, we'd say only good things." Contraire added, "I'd say bad things."

Sarah came in wearing a Red Sox Santa hat. Contraire called her "Sarah Claus". Sarah Claus said, "Give me the money!" She meant, "Show me the money!"

Brendan accidentally sat in Contraire's seat. Contraire came back and said, "Sitting in my seat. Maybe he'll learn something. Getting smarter by the minute."

In this weather, says Brendan, his raisin shrinks. I told him it sounded like a Seinfeld episode, the one in which George is seen naked by his girlfriend after coming out of the water. He complains that when she saw him, he had shrinkage from the cold water.

Congratulations to Mr. D. who was this week's winner of D-Train's NFL pool.



One of my favorite Psychotronic directors, Stuart Gordon, had highly praised this Japanese import, so I was anxious to see it. The Takashi Miike movie is filmed well, beautifully at times. There is a shot of Asami on a balcony framed by the door of the room that is gorgeous.

The film itself deals with a widower seeking to meet a potential new wife thru an audition. The movie takes its time going wire to wire but holds your interest with its characters and dialogue.

Along the way, there are some pithy observations about place and people: "The whole of Japan is lonely." "A lack of confidence brings unhappiness." "Living is another way of reaching death." "Men can't maintain without female support." "Happy people can't act well." And "Words create lies. Pain can be trusted."

Mr. Aoyama finds his dream girl who is 'beautiful, classy and obedient." But Aoyama's choice for "Tomorrow's Heroine" has a different role in mind. Their relationship gets "deeper, deeper". Can't tell you more without giving up the meat and bones of the film.

The movie is subtitled, something that has never bothered me. There are some translation gaffs/typos like 'Oaky' for 'Okay' and a reference to a 'heavy woman' (I think they mean deep). But the dialogue as I showed above is a cut above the rest.

Hollywood will probably do a cover of this soon much like they did with Ring.

8 MM

It's been a while since I first saw this movie. It came out in 1999. But I've wanted to re-visit it for a while. The film takes you places you've never been.

For the faint of heart, this is not your cup of tea. More like gruel. But to those that like edgy descents into Hades, this is for you. Not sure which circle of Hell Dante would place this, but the viewer, like Nick Cage's character Tom Welles, will remember the trip.

Cage/Welles is a private sleuth who is hired for a job that takes him into the seamy, seedy and sick side of our existence. And like him, we become voyeurs along the way. The movie is R-rated for strong perverse sexuality. It is well deserved.

We meet some memorable characters on our descent. Max California (Joaquin Phoenix), Eddie Poole (James Gandolfini), Dino Velvet (Peter Stormare) and especially the unforgettable 'Machine'.

The movie is directed by Joel Schumacher who has done St. Elmo's Fire, Batman Forever and The Lost Boys to name a few. The script is by Andrew Kevin Walker who was the writer for Se7en.

And just remember when you're watching - it's only a film.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

The Hot Club

Last week I wrote about the HC's stall doors being painted purple. Adam of the HC said that the club got the wrong paint and started doing the outside only to find out it was 'a gay kind of purple'. He kidded that the club was converting over to a gay club. Well that's what Mr. D. calls the HC in winter - a gay men's club. Women tend to stay home during the bad winter weather.

The Dom was saying how he thought one HC regular looked a lot like another regular. The Warden said to Dom: "Have you seen an eye doctor lately?"

We were talking about the new Providence Polo Club. Foot Joy was telling Frequent Flyer and me that they hope to use the Station Lawn for the polo matches but Amtrak is claiming ownership of the land. They hope to resolve the issue. Polo would be on Sundays from 4-8.

Frequent Flyer told Foot Joy, "You can invite Prince Charles to play polo." Foot Joy said, "Only if he rides Camilla. She looks like a horse."

Chuck D Computer stopped by between visits to Baltimore. Says he's leasing a condo in the Fells Point section of Baltimore (where Diner was filmed). Chuck says the streets have cobblestones which he can grab onto on the way home to his condo.

The Hot Club's Sandy is a woman of many talents since she is also a nurse. Recently husband Mike got the flu. She says she didn't nurse him. She told him to stay away. She couldn't afford to get sick.

Sandy was making Cosmopolitans, a kind of martini. She said, "Knock your socks off."
Last week I played Link Wray's Rumble on the HC jukebox. It was in Wray's honor since Link passed away Nov. 5 in Copenhagen. Mike Curtis and I used to listen to Link's self-titled album (he's on the cover in a headband). Rumble (1957) opens with a D chord and Wray is credited with introducing the power chord to electric guitar. Get some Link Wray. Fire and Brimstone.

Hot Club Flash! Hooks went to the Dominican Republic and actually tipped. Hooks said he left good tips and they filled his glass to the top. He said the waiters called him Johnny Walker.I asked if he drank red or black. They only had red he said. Mr. D. advised, "You have to ask what you're getting in an 'all-inclusive'." Like top shelf liquor or bar liquor.

Good news from the Warden who tells me that Mike K's tests came back and he is now cancer-free. We are thrilled to hear the good news and wish Mike continued good health.


My 16-year old daughter Cara recommended this movie to me. So I bought it sight unseen. Nice touch with the cover, too, which is a pouch filled with fake blood and a saw blade that moves around.

The beginning reminded me of the start of Cube which also has characters finding themselves in a place but unsure how they got there. Much different after that.

The two characters chained in the men's room are played by Carey Elwes and Leigh Whannell (Adam). Whannell wrote the screenplay. James Wan directed. Elwes's character is named Lawrence Gordon, a possible tribute to actor/director/producer Larry Gordon.

After the intro the movie uses different devices to advance the plot (flashback, even omniscient viewpoint). The film delivers the shudders as you try to figure out along with Dr. Gordon and Adam what the hell is going on. It becomes a taut, tense thriller as well as a horror story.

I'm still not sold on the ending since it requires a large suspension of disbelief. But it can be overlooked as the movie works well otherwise.
In fact this is the best movie I've seen of this type since the remake of Texas Chainsaw Massacre.
Cara was a little down on the acting, especially Elwes. But if you've seen as much horror as I have, you aren't expecting Sir Lawrence Olivier.
Cara has already seen Saw II and liked it just as much.