As you may have been able to discern, WWP has been in something of a funk lately -- a bad state of mind to possess when a writer's block rears its ugly head at the same time. WWP had sworn off all blogging for the foreseeable future. But better angels have prevailed, convincing WWP to restart posting -- at least temporarily. To jump start things, we'll be posting only frivolous news for a while -- at least until the black dog circling WWP's neighborhood makes his exit. Forthwith follows the first in that series...a short movie review.
WWP and buddy Jerry took in "Hellboy II: The Golden Army" tonight, thereby getting WWP to do in one fell swoop three things he never does: go downtown, stay out late on a school night, and watch an action flick. [Can you tell, we're trying to mix things up a bit?] Hellboy 2 is a raucous visual feast fresh from the fertile imagination of Guillermo del Toro ["Pan's Labyrinth," among others]. Equal parts "Romeo & Juliet" and "King Lear," mixed with varying degrees of the original "Star Wars" and every "journey to liberty" action movie you've ever seen [think of the vast expanse from "The Wizard of Oz" to the "Rings" trilogy], this motion picture doesn't disappoint and is never dull. There's quite a bit of wit and schtick to amuse. And while the story is a conventional five-part story of setup-problem-resolution-problem-grand resolution, it all works: the attention span never flags. Basically, what might have been a conventional movie is utterly original in del Toro's hands. Oh, and the visuals! They are simply to die for [and die is what many do in this film]. Heck, this film has even got Barry Manilow! Three gin-and-tonics [on a scale of four].
Seen it? What did you think?
If you've ever dreamed of becoming a character on "The Simpsons," here's your chance. That's WWP above, by the way, the newest resident of Springfield [Oregon, thankyouverymuch], courtesy of SimpsonizeMe.com.
[The image above is based on this photo, gleaned from WWP's church directory, of all things.]
WWP's seen all the movies [but read not one of the books], so he's far from being an expert on the Harry Potter phenom that is taking place at this very moment. Still, we can't help but venture a few guesses:
No guesses about the scar. Maybe Keith Olbermann has it right. We'll find out soon.
We now return to regular programming...
"I have absolutely no regrets about my acting career. Sometimes, I have doubts, but in balance I think it was certainly worthwhile for me to have temporarily left the real world and become an actor. I'm very proud of my work, because I did the best I could possibly do at the time. I always wanted to make one movie with a good acting role for me, but I never did. When I see actors today like William Hurt or Eric Roberts, I think they're such a gift to cinema. I wish I had the chance to do what they do. I knew that I could and many people have agreed with me, but it didn't work out that way. I still have great faith in the film business. The movies seem to be getting better all the time. Whatever direction the industry takes, I wish I were still a part of it. But I'm not going to get into the satin shirts and take a pill. I've made peace with my life."
--"B" film actor Kerwin Mathews
[From a 1987 interview, via IMDb.com.]
It was in the the very early 1960s, in the darkness of the John Danz Theatre in Bellevue, Wash., that WWP first cast eyes on Kerwin Mathews: handsome, blondish, virile – the sort of "guy's guy" a guy wants to hang around with. [Keep in mind, WWP was only 7 at the time; go figure why it took so long to figure out the gay thing … but we digress].
The movie was "The 7th Voyage of Sinbad," a rather ridiculous but nevertheless engaging swashbuckler, the very kind of film the impossibly handsome Mathews would be called to act in time and time again, probably to the detriment of his career advancement. But in endless repeats at the Danz [which the young WWP watched again and again], and in the other cineplexes of the day, Kerwin Mathews persisted and became a Saturday matinee idol like no other -- occasionally great, more than often just unusually good, and nearly always better than his material.
Mathews had his start in the memorable early days of live television in the 1950s, but he staked out his acting claim by appearing afterward in those pirate movies -- long before Johnny Depp ever dared to offer an argh [or for that matter, would be born]. Of course, there were innumerable other clunkers and B-list movies along the way and especially later in his career. [Anyone remember "Jack the Giant Killer" or "Pirates of Blood River"? Thought not.] His last film appearance was in 1978 in the forgotten and forgettable "Prince of Blood."
The lack of limelight success seems not to have daunted Mathews. And from that, we take note. When pausing to wonder whether "it's all been worth it" or "have we done the right thing," we will choose hereafter to recall this rather unremarkable career, but remember more the importance, and the inspiration, of "keeping keeping on."
Kerwin Mathews died last week, at the age of 81. He is survived by his partner of 46 years, Tom Nicoll, and their two cats.
[Official Kerwin Mathews website, here.]
The faux rating scheme you see above - -wherein blogs and websites like this can be evaluated and awarded an MPAA-like endorsement -- seems to be the blog meme of the day. So what the heck, we'll take the bait. Turns out, Worldwide Pablo gets a respectable PG-13 rating [which seems about right]. We'd have been rated PG but for the fact that we've used the word "death" three times recently, "fags" twice and "gay" once. [Only once?]
Apparently they have no problem with the F-bomb we dropped here yesterday [see below]. Maybe profanity on the Internet is like violence in the cineplex?
Whatever. But don't tell these folks.
Worldwide Pablo gets news releases ... lots of news releases. Here's one from today's in box, from Ayn Rand. She may have died more than 20 years ago, but the crusade for the philosophy known as objectivism still lives on at the Ayn Rand Institute:
"MAN FOUND INNOCENT IN DEATH OF CHRIST"Talk amongst yourselves.
IRVINE, CA--When the makers of "The Passion of the Christ" tell us explicitly that the meaning of their film is that "we're all culpable in the death of Christ" we should be horrified, says Dr. Onkar Ghate, senior fellow at the Ayn Rand Institute.
"How," asks Dr. Ghate, "can anyone know, without evidence of our specific choices and actions, that you or I are guilty? How can you or I be responsible for the death of a man killed some two thousand years ago?
"The answer given by Christian doctrine is that man is innately evil. It damns man for every virtue and value that keeps him alive: from the quest for knowledge -- remember the story of Eve? -- to the discovery of new knowledge -- remember Galileo? -- to the creation of wealth -- remember that Jesus tells us it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter 'heaven'? -- to the resulting pride one feels from achieving happiness and prosperity.
"For the anti-Semite, to be Jewish is to be evil. For the devout Christian, to be human is to be evil. Only such a view of man's nature can begin to explain the accusation of universal guilt for Christ's crucifixion.
"Against so monstrous a view of man, any person of self-esteem should rebel."