Tuesday TV Watching

I'm watching the Biggest Loser live finale tonight. I hope Michelle wins. The first hour of the show will recap the season in case you didn't watch. All the contestants show up and you get to see how much they've changed. Update: No spoilers please, we're all on different time zones and I want to be surprised.

If I weren't watching Biggest Loser, I'd watch the 1978 movie FM (trailer here)which is replaying on VH1. I've seen it many times, and I've liked Michael Brandon since the 70's when he was in Lovers and Other Strangers and did a tv movie with Kim Novak called "Third Girl From the Left", a Maggie May type story where Novak plays an aging chorus girl who falls for Brandon who delivers her groceries. (Here's a great photo of him from back then.)It's never been released on VHS or DVD that I know of. Brandon was briefly married to Bionic Woman Lindsay Wagner and moved to England years ago when he married his co-star in Dempsey and Makepeace. A few years ago he starred in the London play "Jerry Springer the Opera."

What are you watching tonight?

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    hmm, whichever L&O and/or CSI (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 08:20:49 PM EST
    is on if and when I decide to turn on the TV.

    Not a darn thing (5.00 / 2) (#4)
    by scribe on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 08:23:34 PM EST
    I let the cable be turned off last week.

    So, I'm watching the snow fall and the computer screen.

    I'm watching basketball but I want to come (none / 0) (#18)
    by Teresa on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 09:02:55 PM EST
    and watch the snow with you.

    A Cary Grant movie I TiVo'd (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by ruffian on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 08:46:46 PM EST
    "People Will Talk" where he plays an unconventional doctor who marries Jeanne Crain so she won't become an unwed mother. And he's probably in love with her, but he likes to save people so much that it's hard to tell for sure. It's good, but a little over the top - never thought I'd find Cary Grant too flawless!! In the final scene he is conducting the med school orchestra, after winning out over the jealous doctor (Hume Cronyn)  who has brought him up on ethics charges.  I didn't recognize the classical piece - maybe it was something Cary's character dashed off in his spare time.

    Ha. Sounds like a combo of Dr. (none / 0) (#19)
    by oculus on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 09:06:00 PM EST
    Kildare and Opus One.

    Boston Legal reruns on ION TV. (5.00 / 2) (#29)
    by oldpro on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 10:59:12 PM EST

    Has anyone tried over-the-air... (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by EL seattle on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 11:30:59 PM EST
    ... digital TV reception yet?  (With a newer TV set or converter box.)  I think that might be a great alternative to cable for folks who get sick and tired of huge fees every month.  It's just like the old rabbit ear reception, but a muchy clearer signal, at least in the cities, I think.  

    And it's free!

    Tonight I watched "Charlie Brown Christmas" on ABC for the second time this month.  That is a perfect program.  The animation, the design, the music, the voice casting and direction.  It probably looks better now than it did in 1965.

    I got the box (none / 0) (#34)
    by BarnBabe on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 11:41:13 PM EST
    just for a small TV I keep in my bedroom which I use one or twice a year when the cable goes out. I have HD and I could have the cable run up through the attic, etc., etc. I got 2 boxes and the other one is for my emergency TV for when the electricity goes out. I can run it off a battery backup.It is the country and people and lightening hit poles. But to answer your question, I hooked it up to the small TV and without even the rabbit ears I got 6 stations in color. I use to only be able to get one in B & W and I was pleasantly surprised at the reception. Not perfect but viewable.

    I love how no TV is gonna get by you... (none / 0) (#37)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 12:03:42 AM EST
    I'm all for that!

    Ha, I am on the PC more (none / 0) (#44)
    by BarnBabe on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 08:21:45 AM EST
    I do have some favorite shows, but no longer watch the MSM for political coverage. And on Friday and Sat nights, when there is little worth watching, I rarely turn it on unless there is a good movie. But, when the electric goes off, and usually it is like 5 hours or so and I do not have an emergency generator, having the battery TV as company is a pleasure. For some reason, the electric rarely goes off in the day time when I can read a book or get things done. It tends to go off between 7-midnight. Nice. I grew up on I Love Lucy, Gunsmoke, Captain Midnight, Fury and Perry Mason and thus, you are correct, I do have my TV's covered. Heh.

    Sounds much like my modus operandi, enjoy! (none / 0) (#46)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 01:12:05 PM EST

    I haven't tried that but I (none / 0) (#38)
    by Jeralyn on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 12:17:14 AM EST
    do love my blue-ray player....and the instant streaming of Netflix movies. It works great, has a beautiful picture and you don't have to order dvds and return them. You just click and watch.

    Part of the reason I blogged so little over the weekend was I couldn't stop watching movies.

    Only problem is the blue ray doesn't record, so I can't use the same tv it's hooked up to when I want to record tv to dvds.  My dvd recorder is now hooked up my only non-HD TV because I haven't can't figure out how to connect it to the HD tv without it taking over the comcast box which has On Demand. So much equipment, so little time. (I could call the manufacture but it's like stopping to ask directions when you're lost-- I never do, I keep thinking I'll figure it out.)


    Michael Brandon (none / 0) (#1)
    by addy on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 08:15:59 PM EST
    was the definitive 70's hunk. Sensitive, longish hair, rebellious but well dressed. I'm aging myself here.....

    I'm so glad someone else (none / 0) (#6)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 08:31:32 PM EST
    remembers him that way. I thought I was the only one.

    Nope, you're not alone (none / 0) (#13)
    by addy on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 08:43:21 PM EST
    I still gotta thing for sparkly brown eyes.

    check out this photo (none / 0) (#15)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 08:46:39 PM EST
    here -- it's exactly how I remember him.

    nice! (none / 0) (#20)
    by addy on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 09:12:26 PM EST
    I remember him like this.


    and the ultra sensitive mensch:


    But why am I remembering him in a polyester, pointy lapel suit? I can't find any images from FM that match that.


    I am going to be all over that movie (none / 0) (#36)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 12:00:42 AM EST
    like a cheap suit: "The Third Girl From the Left" (1973). Forgive me, but Kim Novak is the be all and end all. During the summer of 2003, I did 3 months of "research" which involved watching every fictional movie from the 1970s that I hadn't seen up to that point. Didn't think of looking for things originally made for TV, since that wasn't such a big thing in the 70s. Pre-HBO and all.

    I absolutely loved her in (5.00 / 1) (#39)
    by Amiss on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 12:18:24 AM EST
    Bell, book and candle.

    I love that movie (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by addy on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 08:42:33 AM EST
    Bell Book and Candle is one of my favorites. What a cast! And Novak really is good.

    ahhhhhhhhhhh (none / 0) (#5)
    by CoralGables on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 08:27:36 PM EST
    Jamie Sommers from Ojai..one of my early TV crushes

    Wasn't that "Jerry Springer, (none / 0) (#7)
    by oculus on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 08:33:47 PM EST
    the Opera"?

    P.S.  Friday night I saw "Three Decembers" by Jake Heggie at Zellerbach in Berkeley.  Frederica von Stade was, maybe, 15 feet from me as she sang the role of an aging star of stage musicals.  Such a treat.  

    yes (none / 0) (#9)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 08:37:56 PM EST
    Jerry Springer the Opera, I just updated to make that clear. Thanks.

    Lucky you. (none / 0) (#11)
    by scribe on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 08:39:27 PM EST
    I have the misfortune of not understanding Italian and consequently of dozing off during operas.  I wish I didn't, but there it is.

    This opera was in English with (none / 0) (#12)
    by oculus on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 08:42:08 PM EST
    English text projected just below the top of the stage.  Actually, von Stade's sung English diction was quite understandable.

    I've dozed off at operas in English, too. (none / 0) (#17)
    by scribe on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 08:51:28 PM EST
    I think it's me, not the language.

    heh (none / 0) (#21)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 09:17:44 PM EST
    Oculus and I went through this a few weeks ago. Of course, I take the position that the problem is with the operas, not me.

    Now you've done it. Here is (none / 0) (#23)
    by oculus on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 09:34:29 PM EST
    what I am listening to:  Berlioz' L'enfance du Christ.  Beautiful.  

    Watched (none / 0) (#8)
    by cal1942 on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 08:34:32 PM EST
    Nova and watched old sitcoms earlier. Nothing else of interest on.  TV isn't what it once was.

    Tomorrow morning on HBO2: Charlie Wilson's War.

    Charlie Wilson's War (none / 0) (#10)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 08:39:03 PM EST
    started last week on HBO, I saw it and thought it was just okay. Watch the HD version on HBO if you have HD.

    Charlie Wilson's War, did you think it (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 09:26:38 PM EST
    it was just OK as a movie? Or was it just OK in a factual sense?

    Imo, it was well-cast, well-acted, and presented factual information in an entertaining way.

    I'd recommend it highly, especially since the US is about to embark on an Afghanistan "surge". It would be instructive, and timely, to see how Reagan-era backing of the Afghan Mujahideen facilitated the rise of various militant, fundamentalist groups like the Taliban.


    just as a movie (none / 0) (#24)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 09:44:43 PM EST
    I couldn't get into the characters.

    Fair enough...I'm compiling a list of dramatized (none / 0) (#25)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 10:07:01 PM EST
    non-fiction, fact-based, political movies for a film studies thing I'm working on. Anybody have any favorites?

    parallax view (5.00 / 1) (#26)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 10:14:34 PM EST
    with Warren Beatty.

    Fictional but fabulous! (none / 0) (#27)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 10:23:42 PM EST
    You (5.00 / 3) (#28)
    by cal1942 on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 10:34:43 PM EST
    probably have this on your list, but I've always liked All The President's Men.  Republicans in trouble. Always a winner with me. I've watched it more times than I care to admit.

    The Front (5.00 / 1) (#30)
    by addy on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 11:01:55 PM EST
    yes, fictional, but great.

    A+: they don't make 'em like that anymore... (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 11:25:51 PM EST
    It's interesting to me how much the pacing of movies has changed over the years. i.e. by today's standards,"All the President's Men" would seem slow and ponderous to many viewers; as would most other films of the 70s. I mean, take a look at "Nashville". Don't get me wrong, I still love every minute of it. I'm a big fan of 1970s road movies and, paradoxically, it doesn't get any slower than that.

    "Charlie Wilson's War" impressed me in part because, to my mind, it managed to be fast-paced without sacrificing many details of content. That's a tricky feat in the current market. Gawd, I'm shilling for that flick.  


    How about (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by oldpro on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 11:32:14 PM EST
    "Frost/Nixon?"  "Dick?"
    "The Best Years of Our Lives"
    "The War Room"
    "Primary Colors"
    "Citizen Kane"
    "Schindler's List"

    Will look for "Best Years..." (none / 0) (#35)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Tue Dec 16, 2008 at 11:44:05 PM EST
    Haven't yet seen "Frost/Nixon", or "W" for that matter.

    The others on your list are must-sees. "Primary Colors" is quite amusing. It has an affectionate take on Bill Clinton's Presidential campaign that is especially sympathetic toward Hillary, imo. I understand the book was quite harsh toward both of them, although I've not read it.


    Forgot my all-time favorite... (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by oldpro on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 01:19:27 AM EST
    "The Winslow Boy" (1950 original) -- terrific!

    "The Last Hurrah" (about a Boston Mayor)
    "A Civil Action"
    "Erin Brockovich"
    "Hotel Rwanda"
    "Bowling For Columbine"
    "Hiroshima" & "Hiroshima - Out of the Ashes"
    "Elizabeth" and "Elizabeth R"
    "Henry V"
    etc. etc.!


    Again, some that are new to me... (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 01:26:45 PM EST
    Imo, in addition to the casting of Julia Roberts, "Erin Brockovich" shared other qualities with "Charlie Wilson's War". A visual lushness, a nice balance of gravity and levity, complex fallible  characters, along with dramatic and suspenseful recounting of detailed factual information. Albert Finney was superb as Ed.

    He's in one of my all time favorite 1970s films, with Glenda Jackson, "Sunday, Bloody Sunday" (fiction).

    Within the fact-based political drama genre, "Judgment at Nuremberg" is riveting.  


    Yikes! How could I forget (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by oldpro on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 02:10:03 PM EST
    "Judgment at Nuremberg?"  One of my all-time favorites...which reminds me of another which should be on your list:

    "Inherit The Wind."  Fact-based, political and TIMELY!  Not to mention a grrrreat cast.


    Inherit the Wind (5.00 / 2) (#49)
    by addy on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 02:20:17 PM EST
    Was one of my very favorite movies in my formative years. Watching Spencer Tracey taking Fredrick March apart in the courtroom was stunning to me. I became a lifelong admirer of Clarence Darrow because of it.

    Ditto! (none / 0) (#51)
    by oldpro on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 02:36:14 PM EST
    Don't miss "The Winslow Boy" if you haven't seen it.  I saw it again recently on IFC...still as good as ever...the original British version.  Rent it!

    I will certainly check The Winslow Boy out (5.00 / 1) (#52)
    by addy on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 03:38:02 PM EST
    American Films Only? (5.00 / 1) (#50)
    by CST on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 02:24:11 PM EST
    There are some great foreign films on the subject.  I know of a couple of German films that might interest you -

    -Europa, Europa - basaed on a true story of Jewish boy who joins the Nazi youth to avoid concentration camp.

    -Das Boot - I don't know if this falls under fiction or not, it's sorta fiction, sorta not.


    Foreign is equally good... (none / 0) (#53)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 04:07:38 PM EST
    "Das Boot" was a phenomenal film. The sense of claustrophobia from the single setting gave viewers an uncommon sense of what it must have been like to be trapped in that submarine. What a challenge to hold audience attention without multiple locations and all the other distractions that are typically used to sustain interest.

    Haven't seen "Europa, Europa", but now I intend to.


    "Milk" (none / 0) (#54)
    by oldpro on Thu Dec 18, 2008 at 01:27:24 AM EST
    looks promising in the new releases...about Harvey Milk, gay poltical activist who was assassinated.

    Something that starts soon and looks good (none / 0) (#42)
    by cymro on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 02:00:06 AM EST
    For readers who don't recognize every line from Jackie Brown, that's a line by bail bondsman Max Cherry.

    Tonight we watched two movies that started soon and looked good: Whale Rider and Birdman of Alcatraz.

    Both ere execellent in my view (none / 0) (#43)
    by Jeralyn on Wed Dec 17, 2008 at 02:35:06 AM EST