McCharles family, movies

My DAD in Hitchcock’s I CONFESS (1953)

Just last night Dad told us the story of how he was an extra in an Alfred Hitchcock film called I Confess.

It starred Montgomery Clift as Michael William Logan, a Catholic priest, Anne Baxter as Ruth Grandfort, and Karl Malden as Inspector Larrue.

Filming took place largely on location in Quebec City with numerous shots of the city landscape and interiors of its churches and other emblematic buildings, such as the Château Frontenac.

Dad was in the Canadian military. Ann Baxter entertained the troops as part of the gig.

Here’s the scene. He (must be) soldier #17. 😀

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

books, movies, TV

The Mosquito Coast – season 1

The Mosquito Coast is based on the novel of the same name by Paul Theroux published in 1981.

It also loosely adapted from the 1986 film which starred Harrison Ford. It premiered on Apple TV+ on April 30, 2021. 

The series stars Justin Theroux, nephew of Paul …

As with many of the Apple TV shows, it’s very well done.

I recommend it. But many find the plot unnecessarily confusing with too many twists and turns.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Season 2 will take the family to some place like where Harrison Ford ended up.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.


Spider-Man: Far From Home

Though I generally boycott superhero movies, I’d always heard that this one was worth watching for the humour and visual effects.

And it was.

Very entertaining. Also stupid. But entertaining.

This is the one with Jake Gyllenhaal.

I went back and watched Homecoming, the previous in this series. Good — but not nearly as good.

But I’ll watch more if they are this funny.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

books, movies, TV

Before the Frost by Henning Mankell

In 2002 Mankell published Before the Frost as the first in a 3-book series with Linda Wallander as the main character, rather than her father.

However Mankell abandoned the series after just one novel when the actress playing Linda in the Swedish films, Johanna Sällström, committed suicide in 2007.

Linda Wallander is bored. Just graduated from the police academy, she is waiting to start work at the Ystad police station and move into her own apartment. Meantime, she is living with her father and, like fathers and daughters everywhere, they are driving each other crazy. …

Linda’s boredom doesn’t last long. Soon she is embroiled in the case of her childhood friend Anna, who has inexplicably disappeared.  …

Like other Mankell books, this one involves a cult. A survivor of the  Jonestown massacre in Guyana 1978 returns to Sweden organizing his own death cult.

books, movies

Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

You might want to wait for the film version currently underway at Sony.

William Blake Crouch has already had several books adapted for popular culture.

Some feel this novel was constructed with the movie version in mind. He sold the film rights for $1.25m.

Jason Dessen, an atomic physicist, finds himself in a multiverse — traveling between alternative worlds in his home town Chicago.

Like time travel, it’s not easy to put together a coherent plot where characters meet themselves in other dimensions.

Crouch does a pretty good job at keeping the story interesting.

related – Dark Matter review – quantum fiction that’s delightfully unserious

Click PLAY or meet the author on YouTube.

books, movies

Nomadland – the book

I haven’t seen the film yet.

The dead tree original is not particularly well written, in my opinion.

But I still recommend the book Nomadland: Surviving America in the Twenty-First Century because of the importance of the subject.

2017 nonfiction by American journalist Jessica Bruder about the phenomenon of older Americans (mostly White) who, following the Great (George W Bush) Recession from 2007 to 2009 and onward, adopting transient lifestyles travelling around the United States in search of seasonal work.

Bruder encounters an array of appealing characters. They are portrayed with respect and admiration. Some have become friends for whom she has a deep affection. …

The best part of Jessica Bruder’s story is when she goes to work with the houseless at a sugar beet plant. Then at an Amazon warehouse. Brutal.

Reducing your possessions to just those you can carry with you is Voluntary (or involuntary) Simplicity.

My kind of people.

In fact, campground host sounds to me like not a bad gig.

#FixerUpper #VanLife

books, movies

When the Bough Breaks by Jonathan Kellerman

When the Bough Breaks is … the first novel in the Alex Delaware series.

Though published 1985 I found it smart and surprisingly contemporary.

The Psychologist’s sidekick is LAPD Lieutenant Milo Sturgis, a big, shambling Gay man. In 1985. Yet it’s not at all cliche.

Delaware appears in 32 of Kellerman’s books. I might read on.

Kellerman was a practicing psychologist in L.A. when he wrote the first 5 in the series.

Bough Breaks was made into a movie 1986 with Ted Danson as Delaware. You can watch that on YouTube.