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Johnny LaRue's Crane Shot
Thursday, April 13, 2006
You Knew Somebody Was Going To Do It Eventually
Finally, the trailer for BROKEBACK TREK starring William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy as lovers. I'm sure you're as tired of mock BROKEBACK trailers as I am, but I had to give this one a look, and it's actually pretty good. It's only about two minutes long, so give it a looksee.

I haven't mentioned in awhile what I've been reading. At the moment, I'm about 1/3 of the way through THE BLACK SHRIKE by Alistair MacLean. It's interesting so far, about a British agent who assigned to investigate the recent disappearance of some of the world's most preeminent scientists. All were traveling to Australia, but none arrived at their destination. So the hero and a female agent go undercover as husband and wife and are, presumably, waylaid by the same baddies responsible for the other kidnappings. At this point, the couple have escaped from their cell aboard a dank steamer ship and leapt into a stormy ocean, where they floated all night until miraculously washing adrift on a coral reef, which turned out, when the sun came up, to be near an island inhabited by an old British dude who, I'm betting, is involved with the original conspirators somehow.

I just finished MacLean's FEAR IS THE KEY, which I picked up before, but watched after, seeing the 1972 film adaptation. The movie, directed by Michael Tuchner and starring Barry Newman, John Vernon, Suzy Kendall, Dolph Sweet and Ben Kingsley, is surprisingly faithful to the novel with just a few relatively minor changes.

Before that, I read Brett Halliday's ARMED...DANGEROUS..., in which Miami private dick Michael Shayne goes undercover as a New York bank robber to bust a police corruption scheme, and DC Comics' SHOWCASE PRESENTS JONAH HEX, which is a 500-pages-and-more black-and-white collection of the first couple of dozen Jonah Hex comic book stories from the 1970's, all of which came from ALL-STAR WESTERN. Jonah Hex may be the most popular western character ever created specifically for comic books. As written by co-creator John Albano and later Michael Fleisher, who gave Hex a bit more depth, Jonah is a ruthless bounty hunter scarred physically and emotionally from his experiences fighting for the Confederates in the Civil War. Most of the stories are drawn by DC's stable of Filipino artists, including co-creator Tony DeZuniga, who give the character an appropriately bleak atmosphere. I hope DC releases more Jonah Hex in the SHOWCASE format, which is a thick book that sells for about $17--an excellent bargain.

What are you reading these days?

Posted by Marty at 11:31 PM CDT
Post Comment | View Comments (3) | Permalink

Friday, April 14, 2006 - 10:03 AM CDT

Name: RockGoddess

Well marty,

I am finally finishing A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius. Mostly I read scholarly articles and books. Grad school limits my pleasure reading. I keep thinking if I make it a plan to read each night before bed I could read a new book. But I don't think it will be what you are reading. Just a hunch. :)

Saturday, April 15, 2006 - 9:07 AM CDT

Name: ld

I read MacLean's Golden Gate in high school. I didn't have to, I just found it in the school library and my curiousity paid off. I'm surprised that with the success of terrorist fighting shows like 24 and the Unit, nobody has thought to make a movie of it yet. Or have they?

Currently I'm a little past the halfway point in Imperial Grunts by Robert Kaplan. Kaplan, a reporter, visited U.S. special forces around the globe to see how a modern empire operates. The book is a real eye opener and Kaplan's writing is vivid without being verbose. He doesn't just talk about the "grunts" but spends a lot of time describing the history (often ancient history), culture and current political climates of their areas of operation. And while it's clear Kaplan has a deep admiration for the guys he's met, the book is in no way pro-Bush. It's not really pro- or anti- anything. It's just a very objective look at the only empire of the 21st century.

Laurie just finished Reefer Madness by Eric Schlosser. It's a close look the U.S. black markets of pot, porn and illegal immigration. She says it wasn't as good as Fast Food Nation, but still enlightening.

Saturday, April 15, 2006 - 9:51 AM CDT

Name: Marty McKee

Yes! GOLDEN GATE kicks ass! I wrote about that sometime ago, maybe on a different forum. And what I wrote is that I'm surprised nobody has made a movie out of it yet because it's a great premise for one. Apparently Joss Whedon, who made SERENITY, has written a screenplay that isn't officially based on GOLDEN GATE, but has an extremely similar plot.

Nobody has made any MacLean movies in a long time. Not only are there still some good novels waiting to be adapted, it wouldn't hurt for some of the earlier films to be remade. ICE STATION ZEBRA and THE SATAN BUG, for instance.

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