Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Day #21,440

Walk km 5462-5465: running errands
Walk km 5465-5470 (15,970 to go): 58th/Adera/59th/Oster/73rd/Montcalm

street scene at twilight
aprox km 5470 Marine Drive

Monday, August 30, 2010

Day #21,439

Walk km 5451-5462 (15,977 to go): to Yaletown Station/(skytrain)/41st/Willow/42nd/Laurel/43rd/Wiltshire/57th/Angus/59th/Adera/60th/Granville/Park/63rd/Cambie/(skytrain)/Georgia/Hamilton/Dunsmuir/Keefer/Abbott/Pender

another sunny day in suburbia
aprox km 5459 63rd Ave

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Central Valley Greenway

Day #21,438
Walk km 5438-5448 (15,990 to go): from Commercial Station to Sperling Station with the Meetup group
Walk km 5448-5451: to the circus

the Meetup Walking group
aprox km 5445 on Central Valley trail

Book #310 (#31 this year): One Russia Two Chinas (2004, Douglas "George" Fetherling)
Not nearly as much fun as his name-dropping books about the 60s and 70s. However, a pleasant read about his trips to Russia & China.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Day #21,437

Walk km 5435-5438: to the library and Main Street Station.

Movie #1367 (#183 this year):
One Year Later(1933, E Mason Hopper)

Another one from the Internet Archives. This is one of the best. Its kinda like "Grand Hotel" on a train. The main story is about a convict being transported to the "big house" to get "the chair".... and his wife who he refuses to talk to... and the reporter who covered the trial but who is now dying of TB. Then there's the fellow who gets the Mann Act explained to him. The narrative also uses flashbacks/flashforwards as well. Pretty darn good for a Internet Archives freebie from a never-heard-of-him director.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Day #21,436

Walk km 5425-5435 (16,001 to go): King Edward/Crown/24th/Dunbar/King Edward/Arbutus/16th/E Blvd/17th/Cedar/Fir/Granville bridge/Howe/Smithe

statue of boy playing
aprox km 5432 Fir Street

Movie #1365 (#181 this year): We Don't Live Here Anymore(2004, John Curran)

Two couples are having marital problems. Their actions range from saint to jerk. Then there's an epiphany by the jerk. And the movie ends. So?
Always fun to see Laura Dern though - that kid can emote like crazy.

Movie #1366 (#182 this year): Slightly Honorable(1939, Tay Garnett)

Eve Arden with a fly on her nose (that's how we know that she's dead)

This was an odd find in the Internet Archives. A cast of Pat O'Brien, Broderick Crawford, Eve Arden and Edward Arnold directed by Tay Garnett. Sounds awfully close to an "A" picture to me.
This one has the problem of being a murder/comedy. Serious crime drama one minute and slapstick the next. The crime drama part was crap. There were some good jokes in the comedy half but a bad print means that I missed a fair amount of dialogue due to bad sound. Reasonably entertaining.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Day #21,435

Walk km 5423-5425: running errands

Movie #1363 (#179 this year): The World Gone Mad (1933, Christy Cabanne)

It's back to the Internet Archives to try another Christy Cabanne. It's a crime drama so there's hope. Not a bad little picture but the credit has to go to Pat O'Brien. Pat plays the wise cracking reporter in a style that makes him the George Clooney of his day.

Movie #1364 (#180 this year): Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter? (1957, Frank Tashlin)

Jayne Mansfield in CinemaScope

Like watching movie history being made. It was Frank Tashlin who developed this comedy style. It's big. It's colourful. It's brash and yet still smooth. It was the comedy style that dominated the decade to come.
Still fun to watch although I got to admit the comedy isn't really all that funny. But A+ for style.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Day #21,434

Walk km 5406-5410: Meetup group walk to Queen Elizabeth park
Walk km 5410-5423 (16,011 to go): Meetup group from Science World to Kitsilano beach & return

evening Meetup Group to Kitsilano Beach
aprox km 5415 Chestnut Street

Movie #1362 (#178 this year): Dixie Jamboree (1944, Christy Cabanne)

I dipped into the Internet Archives once too often. What we have here is a Producers Releasing Corporation (PRC) musical comedy. The music is horrid and the comedy is cornball. Yech!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Day #21,433

Walk km 5396-5406 (16,027 to go): 15th/Blanca/16th/Tolmie/4th

sunny afternoon in suburbia
aprox km 5402 12th Ave from Tolmie

Movie #1361 (#177 this year): Big Bluff(1955, W Lee Wilder)

W Lee finally gets away from space aliens and yetis and directs a good old fashioned skid row crime drama. This is more like it. The plot is silly but has a neat surprise ending just like they have in real movies. Most enjoyable.
Oh yes, if you'd like to see this movie too, it's free on the Internet Archives.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Day #21,795

Walk km 5388-5391: running errands
Walk km 5391-5396 (16,399 to go): 31st/Highbury/Broadway

trees and lawn
aprox km 5393 27th @ Highbury

Movie #1360 (#176 this year): 20h17 Rue Darling(2003, Bernard Emond)

A nice try but the script just isn't very strong. Nice hang-dog performance from lead actor Luc Picard.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Day #21,794

Walk km 5380-5388 (16,406 to go): Commercial/15th/Windsor/22nd/St Catherines/6th/Scotia/1st/Main/seawalk/Georgia/Abbott/Pender

aprox km 5383 St Catherines Street

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Day #21,793

Walk km 5372-5378 (16,415 to go): Cambie/22nd/Kingsway/22nd/Lanark/21st/Fleming/15th/Commercial
Walk km 5378-5380: to Safeway

Mercury M-100
aprox km 5377 15th Ave

Movie #1359 (#175 this year): Selon Charlie(2006, Nicole Garcia)

One of those movies with a truckload of characters whose lives all intersect eventually. Unfortunately, these don't really intersect in any kind of meaningful way. And the tennis player didn't intersect at all (unless I missed something).

Friday, August 20, 2010

Day #21,792

Walk km 5361-5363: to T&T Supermarket
Walk km 5363-5372 (16,420 to go): to Science World, then with Meetup group to Sunset Beach, then home

Movie #1358 (#174 this year): Without Love (Harold S Bucquet, 1945)

A pleasant picture. Some good dialogue delivered with precision by Tracy & Hepburn.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Day #21,791

Walk km 5359-5361: running errands

Movie # 1357 (#173 this year): The Snow Creature(1954, W Lee Wilder)

It appears they had a problem. This is a Yeti movie but all the Yeti scenes take place at night so we can't see it. I'm thinking their Yeti wasn't very convincing. All the night scenes makes this a real nooze fest.
W Lee Wilder was the brother of Hollywood hotshot Billy "Some Like It Hot" Wilder.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Day #21,790

Walk km 5351-5359 (16,431 to go): with Meetup group to Queen Elizabeth park then Main/16th/15th/Columbia/10th/Cambie

a Buick
aprox km 5357 15th Ave

Movie #1356 (#172 this year): Kaleidoscope (1966, Jack Smight)

Disposable. They appeared to be going for a kind of Avengers feel. Didn't work.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Day #21,789

Walk km 5337-5351 (16,438 to go): Marine Station to UPS (and return)

river scene with logs
aprox km 5348 Fraser River

Book #307 (#30 this year): Travels By Night(1994, Douglas Fetherling)

Here's the earlier volume to Featherling's 70s exploits that I finished just a few days ago. Although this is the earlier volume, the pages are neither yellowed nor crinkled as that book was. However, it turned out to be just as much a page turner. I guess Fetherling is a fine writer then although the yellowed and crinkled pages were missed.
The best part of this book is the description of early 60s Wheeling WV. It's a town you often hear of as important but can't quite figure out why. The majority of the book concerns Toronto which seems to have been overrun by poets in those days. I wonder if any still exist.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Day #21,788

Walk km 5335-5337: running errands

Movie #1354 (#170 this year): Great Day In The Morning (1956, Jacques Tourneur)

Decided to watch a movie on TV today. You expect a lot from Jacques Tourneur but this would be one of his lesser efforts. Colourful western with some nice touches but otherwise nothing special.

Movie #1355 (#171 this year): Continental (2007, Stephane Lafleur)

an exciting action scene from "Continental"

Finally! That was quite a streak of clunkers and so-sos. Continental is the story of four depressed people. They all lead lives of "quiet desperation". Normally, this would be a feel good movie since, in comparison, the viewer's life must be so much better. However, Stephane Lafleur does a wonderful job of making these characters real and we become depressed right along with his subjects. So, depressing yes, but my eyes were glued to the screen throughout. Can't ask for more.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Day #21,787

Walk km 5325-5327: to T&T Supermarket
Walk km 5327-5335: Vanness/Oben/Aberdeen/Euclid/Duchess/29th/Penticton/27th/Nanaino/28th/Sidney/26th/Victoria/Hull/John Hendry park/Victoria/10th

lazy Sunday afternoon
aprox km 5332 26th Ave

Movie #1353 (#169 this year): Noirs Et Blancs En Couleur (1976, Jean-Jacques Annaud)

Sorry, I didn't get it. A movie about idiocy. It seems lots of people are idiots but it's better to be smart. That's it? I'll have to check IMDB.
I checked with IMDB. Only one reviewer got the impression that being an idiot was better than being smart. I was thinking that that was were this film was going but I don't think it ever got there. Yes, the smart one started to get a swelled head and by bringing in a 100 more natives to fight could have caused a much bigger disaster than what the idiots had in mind. Except it never happened. Unless that bit about people dying because of the rain meant that the entire army was wiped out? I didn't get that impression. Maybe some scenes are missing?

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Day #21,786

Walk km 5318-5321: running errands
Walk km 5321-5325(16,461 to go): Thurlow/Dunsmuir/Hamilton/Hastings/Homer/Cordova/Howe/Canada Place Way/Thurlow

art gallery
aprox km 5322 Dunsmuir Street

Friday, August 13, 2010

Day #21,785

Walk km 5306-5318 (16,467 to go): from Science World to Kitsilano Beach (and return) with Meetup walking group then to T&T Supermarket

Meetup walking group
aprox km 5315 along False Creek

Book #306 (#29 this year): Way Down Deep In The Belly Of The Beast (1996,Douglas Fetherling)

This book was kind of confusing. I found it a great read and a real page turner. Why? Got me. It's reminiscences concerning 1970s Toronto publishing (mostly periodicals). A real yawn fest right? You would think so.
Was it the skilled writing style of Mr Fetherling? Maybe. Or maybe it was the binding. It's a paperback that's been converted to hardcover. Additionally, even though this was published in 1996, the pages are beginning to turn yellow with just the right amount of crinkle.
For now, I'll give the credit to Mr Fetherling.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Day #21,784

Walk km 5297-5299: running errands
Walk km 5299-5306 (16,478 to go): to Yaletown Station/(skytrain)/Cambie/28th/Willow/12th/Heather/10th/Willow/6th

aprox km 5304 12th @ Willow

Movie #1352 (#168 this year): I'll Take Sweden(1965, Frederick De Cordova)

This is the last of the Bob Hopes. Thank goodness. In this one, Bob plays an obnoxious jerk who goes to Sweden. The Swedes then realize the error of their ways and become obnoxious jerks too. Awful.
Oh yes, "I'll Take Sweden" by Frankie Avalon is quite possibly the worst song ever recorded. It fits this movie perfectly.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Day #21.783

Walk km 5283-5297: Commercial/11th/Semlin/Victoria/14th/Commerical/16th/Victoria/Porter/Commercial/Kingsway/Miller/Welwyn/Kingsway/King Edward/St George/24th/Main/(to Queen Elizabeth Park with Meetup group)/Main/Watson/Main

aprox km 5290 James Street

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Day #21,782

Walk 5275-5283 (16,499 to go): 28th/Boundary/27th/26th/Lillooet/25th/Boyd/Renfrew/20th/Kaslo/19th/Renfrew/18th/Winlaw/18th/Copley/17th/Kamloops

hot rod
aprox km 5282 18th Ave

Movie #1350 (#166 this year): Le Journal D'un Suicide(1973, Stanislav Stanojevic)

Delphine Seyrig looks fabulous in Le Journal D'un Suicide

Incomprehensible movie. Therefore, worthless.
It may be the greatest movie ever made (or the worst) but if nobody can understand it.... then nothing can pass between the creator and the audience thus rendering it worthless.

Movie #1351 (#167 this year): Call Me Bwana(1963, Gordon Douglas)

Hey, since we're making a jungle picture, let's have Bob Hope and Arnold Palmer do some golf scenes!

The producers who brought you James Bond now bring you the latest Bob Hope comedy. And just to be different, they're going to attempt to create a comedy without any funny bits. And they succeeded - nothing funny about this movie at all. Depressing.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Day #21,781

Walk km 5266-5268: running errands
Walk km 5268-5275: to Main Street Station/(skytrain)/Nanaimo/20th/Slocan/19th/18th/John Hendry park/Lakewood/10th/Semlin/Broadway/Victoria/10th

boardwalk to the lake
aprox km 5273 John Hendry park

Movie #1349 (#165 this year): Boy Did I Get A Wrong Number (1966, George Marshall)

Oh no! This movie is terrible........and I like it! I first saw this one at the local theatre in 1966 when I was 14. So now, I actually like this sort of crap.
To be fair, I also saw "How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying" around the same time and even then I thought it sucked. So, I guess just experiencing things as a kid won't necessarily make you like them. That means there is something about this movie that I actually like. What in the world could it be?!?!?
Maybe I found Elke Sommer sexy? Maybe I found Phyllis Diller sexy? Jeeez!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Day #21,780

Walk km 5262-5266: to Safeway via Coal Harbour

Movie #1347 (#163 this year): Bachelor In Paradise (1961, Jack Arnold)

Well, I didn't realize how popular potato peeling scenes are in the cinema. This is two in a row. And to think they're popular in both Belgian art films and Hollywood fluff.
I enjoyed watching this movie even though I know it's a load of crap. You see, when I was a kid I'd go to the movies and this is what I would see there. Now, of course, I can see how all the jokes and gags are forced and not really funny at all. Darn nostalgia: I'm against it but not immune from it.
Watch the trailer.

Movie #1348 (#164 this year): Where There's Life (1947, Sidney Lanfield)

Another bit of fluff starring Bob Hope. This one was funnier than Bachelor In Paradise with a fair amount of witty dialogue well delivered by Hope.... but no potato peeling scene.

Book #305 (#28 this year): Big Bear (2008, Rudy Wiebe)

I'm usually more interested in other people's history than my own. So for a change I read this biography in the "Extraordinary Canadians" series. Big Bear was a Cree chief in the 19th century. The Cree did not have a written language so the author is under quite a handicap here. I have no idea how accurate this is but I enjoyed the story. At least I know a little bit more about Canadian history now. Maybe I'll try a few more titles in this series.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Day #21,779

Walk km 5258-5262: running errands

Movie #1346 (#162 this year):
Jeanne Dielman 23 Quai du Commerce 1080 Bruxelles (1975, Chantal Akerman)

the exciting (really!) potato peeling scene

It's a horror movie. But unlike any you have seen before. There are no aliens from outer space. There are no giant insects. But there is boredom. Oodles of boredom.
We start out in the opening scene finding out that our leading character is a prostitute. Then we go through her daily routine. Jeanne boiling potatoes. Jeanne setting the table. Jeanne listening to the radio. All very boring but somehow voyeuristic because movies never show boring routine stuff. Then when we see that Jeanne is just going to repeat these same chores over and over, the voyeurism recedes and we become bored as well. That is, until the scene where the potatoes are ruined because one of her sessions lasts too long. This sends her into a tizzy. Her routine has been broken and she must rush out to buy another bag on potatoes. That makes dinner late.
As she peels the new potatoes she keeps pausing. It looks like she's trying to decide whether to use the peeler on the potatoes or on her wrists. Then she starts to drop things. Then she forgets to do up a button. The coffee doesn't taste right.
Something is going to happen. And it does. Of course, what would have been even more horrific would have have been if nothing happened. If the grind would have just gone back to normal again.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Day #21.778

Walk km 5249-5258: walk to Stanley Park and then with Meetup group through the park

Meetup walking group
aprox km 5252 Stanley Park

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Day #21,777

Walk km 5244-5249 (16,528 to go): Thurlow/Pacific/seawalk/Davie/Mainland/Hamilton/Georgia/Cambie/Dunsmuir/Abbott/Pender

Movie #1345 (#161 this year): Je Vous Trouve Tres Beau (2005, Isabelle Mergault)

Pleasant romantic comedy about farmer who must quickly find a new wife when his dies. Otherwise, how will the laundry get done? Michel Blanc is, as usual, a delight as the farmer with no social skills.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

False Creek

Day #21,776
Walk km 5231-5244 (16,532 to go): from Science World to Kitsilano Beach (and return) with Meetup group and then to T&T Supermarket

Meetup group walkers
aprox km 5244 seawalk along False Creek

Movie #1344 (#160 this year): Kind Lady (1951, John Sturges)

Watched the first hour of Gordon Douglas' "The Detective" only to find that the DVD was defective. A lot of time must be lost watching library DVDs that have been damaged.
Instead, I turn to TCM for an early John Sturges. Not a bad little film but no "Bad Day At Black Rock".

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Day #21,775

Walk km 5221-5223: running errands
Walk km 5223-5231 (16,544 to go): Atlin/25th/Kaslo/22nd/Cassiar/26th/Boundary/25th/Windermere/24th/Boyd/Renfrew/21st/Penticton/22nd/Nanaimo

brown-eyes susans?
aprox km 5227 25th Ave

Monday, August 2, 2010

Day #21,774

Walk km 5211-5213: to T&T Supermarket
Walk km 5213-5219 (16,555 to go): 29th/Windermere/20th/Nootka/19th/Seaforth/Worthington/15th/Slocan/Grandview
Walk km 5219-5221: to Safeway

a rusty Honda
aprox km 5217 15th Ave

Movie #1338 (#159 this year): Rendez-Vous(1985, Andre Techine)

Sorry, but I couldn't relate. These characters are not real. These characters have no motivation for their actions. There is no relationship here between what we see on the screen and what you might find in the real world.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Day #21,773

Walk km 5199-5203: running errands
Walk km 5203-5211 (16,562 to go): Nanaimo/27th/Gladstone/Garden/Grandview/Templeton/13th/Commercial/14th/Maddams/14th/Main

another walking path
aprox km 5206 John Hendry Park

Movie #1337 (#158 this year): The Alpha Incident(1978, Bill Rebane)

Ralph Meeker in an exciting scene from The Alpha Incident

Just put a bunch of people together into a closed environment and you can't go wrong. Even with a movie as crappy as this, it works. Five people are quarantined in the railroad office in Moose Point where they are waiting it die. The dialogue is pretty bad. The added scenes with the two scientists looking for an antidote are pathetic. But the premise still works - despite everything, the Moose Point scenes are actually entertaining.