Sunday, November 30, 2014

Day #22,992

Walk km 18,278-18,291: Den Dolder to Amersfoort
trail through the woods
approx km 18,288 nearing Amersfoort

Movie #2611: The Impossible Kid (1982, Eddie Nicart)

They say this is the very best Philippine midget secret agent picture (star Weng Weng made a bunch of them). I gotta admit it is rather goofy. But, maybe my tolerance for goofy is running low. A midget secret agent with a plot that must have been written by 6 year olds might be funny for a few minutes but 90 minutes of this stuff can give you a migraine.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Den Dolder

Day #22,991
Walk km 18,264-18,278: Utrecht to Den Dolder
Den Dolder sign
approx km 18,988 border of Den Dolder and Bilthoven

Movie rewatch: Mr Smith Goes To Washington (1939, Frank Capra)

One of the greats. I had forgotten that Mr Smith (like Mr Deeds) was prone to violence. Otherwise, pretty much 100% classic.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Day #22,990

Walk km 18,255-18,260: Utrecht
along the canal
approx km 18,257  Utrecht

Movie #2610: Shadows Unseen (1972, Camillo Bazzoni)

A movie on YouTube that isn't a western! Italian police procedural. Well made. Enjoyable. The Italian title was the more apropos Abuse Of Power. 

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Day #22,989

Movie #2609: Joe Dakota (1957, Richard Bartlett)

Much better plotting than your usual run-of-the-mill western. Man, there's a lot of westerns on YouTube. There must have been tens of thousands of these things made in Hollywood. No wonder the USA has such a gun culture. The whole nation was brought up watching men walk around with 6-shooters on their hip.

Day #22,987-988

Walk km 18,252-18,255: changing cities

Movie #2607: The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out The Window And Disappeared (2013,Felix Herngren)
Movie #2608: Magic In The Moonlight (2014, Woody Allen)
Two airplane movies. Neither really enjoyable given where I was when watching them. The Woody Allen is quite interesting because Woody's not getting any younger and this one is about the afterlife. Does he punk out? Watch and see. The other one is a comedy and would have been much better without all those people walking up and down the aisle and the stewardesses always bringing me stuff. Also, the teeny tiny screen (with the wrong aspect ratio) didn't help.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Day #22,985-986

Walk km 18,243-18,248: running errands
Walk km 18,248-18,250: to Denman
Walk km 18,250-18,252: to Denman

Book #518: The Dame (Donald E Westlake, 1969)
Thought I was getting a new Parker but it turns out that Westlake also wrote Grofields under the Richard Stark nom de plume. Grofield is much more sociable than Parker and he has a sense of humour as well. The trouble with this one is the whodunit part. The denouement is especially dull. But I did finish it in about 24 hours  - it musta had some good qualities. Still, we want Parker back.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Day #22,984

Walk km 18,241-18,243: to T&T

Book #517: Idiot America (2009, Charles P Pierce)
Book bemoans the lack of intelligence in the American population. The author posits that democracy will not work without an informed public but these days the public believes whomever shouts the loudest or talks at their level. Many examples are included.   

TV episode #131: Checkmate - Lady On The Brink (1960, Frank Arrigo)
TV episode #132: Mary Tyler Moore - Phyllis Whips Inflation (1975, Jay Sandrich)
TV episode #133: Zane Grey Theatre - You Only Run Once (1956, Felix Feist)
TV episode #134: Lou Grant - Physical (1978, Charles S Dubin)
Two episodes each from the MTM gang: Mary Tyler Moore, Cloris Leachman & Ed Asner. I figured it had been awhile since I'd seen the Mary Tyler Moore show - it was 39 years ago!  

Day #22,983

Walk km 18,229-18,241 (4743 to go): Stanley Park
Meetup walkers
approx km 18,236 Siwash Rock lookout

TV episode #129: Hong Kong - When Strangers Meet (1960, Boris Sagal)
TV episode #130: Have Gun Will Travel - The Uneasy Grave (1961, Andrew V McLaglen)

It's a Pippa Scott double episode. The episode of interest here is Hong Kong. Didn't know such a TV show existed. Rod Taylor plays a Hong Kong newspaperman. The plot for this one was quite complicated - maybe that's why the series didn't last long..

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Day #22,982

Walk km 18,223-18,229: to Stanley Park

Movie #2605: Sex Kittens Go To College (1960, Albert Zugsmith)
Movie #2606: The Brain Eaters (1958, Bruno VeSota)
It's a Jody Fair double bill. Unfortunately I couldn't recognize any similarity between any 2 actresses in these two movies - I guess Jody just didn't have much star quality.
Hard to say if SKGTC was any good. VIOOZ wasn't working properly so I had to watch it in 3 and 4 minute chunks over about 12 hours. 3 and 4 minute chunks may have been the best way to watch this one. This one definately had the kitsch cast of the century. Imagine a movie with Mamie Van Doren, Tuesday Weld, Vampira, John Carradine, Mijanou Bardot (Brigette Bardot's sister), Jackie Coogan (doing W C Fields), Charlie Chapin Jr, Harold Lloyd Jr and as an added special attraction.... Conway Twitty! One weird part was the strip tease part (with actual nudity). This must have been added for the European release? No way it would have been in a mainstream Hollywood picture in 1960. What made the trip tease extra weird was that only two cast members were seen in the strip tease scenes: the robot and the monkey. Both were getting pretty steamed up too - too kinky for me!
And then we had to deal with The Brain Eaters. One of my favourite plots: small town under attack by aliens from outer space. Loved the familiar music but didn't know what it was until the familiar strains of "Alexander Nevsky" by Sergei Prokofiev started. Turns out that they saved on library music but stealing from Shostakovich and Prokofiev. I guess they figured that The Brain Eaters would never be shown in the USSR so it was safe to steal the music from them. They weren't so lucky in stealing the plot. It turns out they used a Robert A Heinlein short story for that but Mr Heinlein did find out about it and threated to sue. They settled for $5000 (must have doubled the budget!). Oh yes, the movie.... I enjoyed it.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Day #22,981

Walk km 18,213-18,223: Pacific Spirit Park
Meetup walkers (photo taken by passer-by)
approx km 18,215 Pacific Spirit Park

Movie #2602: Whistling In Brooklyn (1943, S Sylvan Simon)
Movie #2603: A Stranger In Town (1943,  Roy Rowland)
Movie #2604: Viva Cisco Kid (1940, Norman Foster)
It's a Jean Rogers triple-bill. Jean shows a flair for comedy in the Red Skelton vehicle, Whistling in Brooklyn. Even as a kid, I found Red Skelton to be extremely unfunny. But, given decent material, he comes across as a talented comedian. The next two films feature Jean as just another pretty face. A Stranger In Town features Frank Morgan as a judge who uses the law to tame a lawless town (while on a hunting vacation). Viva Cisco Kid features the dashing Cesar Romero in the title role.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Day #22,980

Walk km 18,203-18,213: Pacific Spirit Park
a stump
approx km 18,208 Pacific Spirit Park

Movie #2600: Counterplot (1959, Kurt Neumann)
Movie #2601: The Strange World Of Planet X (1958, Gilbert Gunn)
It's a Forrest Tucker double feature. First off, Forrest gets to star with the most glamourous of Hollywood stars, Allison Hayes. Unfortunately Ms Hayes is the only thing to recommend this tedious programmer. This was part of an Allison Hayes film festival on TCM today. Looks like there's hope for old TCM after all.
For the 2nd feature we had to go to YouTube. This time Forrest has his hands full of giant insects instead of Ms Hayes. Most unfortunate for Mr Tucker but it does make our viewing a bit more interesting. I've always enjoyed those giant bug/animal movies.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Day #22,979

Walk km 18,193-18,203 (4777 to go): False Creek 3 speed walk

Movie #2599: Day Of The Outlaw (1959, Andre De Toth)
Title tells nothing. It's calvary officer Burl Ives who's the bad guy (sorta) and rancher Robert Ryan who's the good guy (sorta). Endless shades of gray in this telling of The Petrified Forest gone western. The whole thing is executed to perfection but I think we'll have to give the kudos to Mr De Toth (based on past performance).   

Monday, November 17, 2014

Day #22,978

Walk km 18,176-18,193: Edmonds Station to Apna Chaat House

Meetup walkers
approx km 18,190 North Delta

Movie #2598: The Ides Of March (2011, George Clooney)

There's always the odd quality movie on Netflix. Here's a game of cross and doublecross on the (U.S. presidential) campaign trail. 101 minutes seemed more like 21.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Day #22,977

Walk km 18,168-18,176: Edmonds Station to Richmond
approx km 18,170 along the BC Parkway

Movie #2596: Walk the Dark Street (1956, Wyott Ordung)
Movie #2597: First Man Into Space (1959, Robert Day)
It's a Wyott Ordung double feature. Both stories here are by Ordung. In the first, he takes care of directing as well. The plot for that one is laughable. He comes up with a good story idea but he cannot come up with a plausible plot and so the whole thing is idiotic. In the 2nd one he fares better because it's sci-fi so it doesn't need to make any sense.
A lousy print hinders "Walk The Dark Night" but YouTube has a nice print of "First Man Into Space". Neither movie is anything to write home about. Wyott Ordung strikes out.

Day #22,975-976

Walk km 18,159-18,161: to T&T
Walk km 18,161-18,168: seawall of West Vancouver

Movie #2593: Danger Route (Seth Holt, 1967)
It's imitation Bond time with Connery clone Richard Johnson. It seems that Mr Johnson was who they initialy thought of when they started casting for the part of James Bond. There is a similarity.
This one is a kind of poor man's James Bond - plenty of intrigue but non of the flashy trappings that go with a real James Bond movie.

Movie #2594: Trouble at Melody Mesa (1944, W Merle Connell)
Movie #2595: It's A Small World (1950, William Castle)
Yes, it is a small world - what we have here is a Lorraine Miller double feature. Never heard of her? Me neither.
Trouble At Melody Mesa was made in 1944 and nobody dared to release it until 1949. It's that bad. The acting is amazingly bad - everyone recites their lines in the most wooden deadpan way possible. And that includes Ms Miller. This woman can't act.
Now we skip ahead to 1950 and all of a sudden she can act! There's nothing like having a real director in charge to spuce up a performance. The movie itself is first rate. It's the life story of a midget. Ms Miller gets the plum role as the floozy who introduces our hero into the wonderful world of crime. And then breaks his heart with a "me and a midget.... don't make me laugh" routine. Looks like William Castle made some pretty good movies before his early 60s gimmick horror flix.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Day #22.972-974

Walk km 18,128-18,131: to Safeway
Walk km 18,131-18,134: running errands
Walk km 18,134-18,146: fast walk along False Creek
Walk km 18,146-18,147: to lunch
Walk km 18,147-18,159: around Stanley Park

Movie #2591: Bitter Harvest (1963, Peter Graham Scott)
I loved the execution but the plot was nothing special. Young airheaded beauty heads for the big city with dreams of becoming a jetsetter. Tragedy awaits.

Movie #2592: My Brothers Wife (1966, Doris Wishman)
Doris may be a horrible director but she does have her own style. So, after watching endless movies that all look the same, it's fun to watch a Wishman. And yes, she did forget the apostrophe.
Also kudos to non-actress June Roberts: during the big "should I kill myself" climax scene, June decides that she won't even bother trying to act. She looks like she's just waiting for the kettle to boil as she ponders the fate of her mortal soul.

Book #516: The Blonde On The Street Corner (1954, David Goodis)
I thought this would be sub-par Goodis. I'd never heard of this title before. No Black Lizard edition. But I assume that's because this is not a crime novel. Nope, this is just a novel about a bunch of bums. They stand around on the streetcorners. They smoke some. They drink some. They work some (but not much). But underneath the bum exterior there's a whole nother world going on. Read it and see for yourself. Sure, just read it. For yourself.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Day #22,971

Walk km 18,115-18,128: Braid to Poco

fisheye mirror
approx km 18,122 Riverview Hospital grounds

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Day #22,970

Walk km 18,106-18,115: Metrotown to Commercial/Broadway

Movie #2590: Lady Stay Dead (Terry Bourke, 1981)
There's a homicidal maniac on the loose downunder. Pretty decent execution with some bits of silly dialogue added just for fun. No classic but good for 90 minutes of mindless entertainment. 

Book #515: Cowboys and Indies (2014, Gareth Murphy)

Fairly interesting history of the record biz. There seems to be some genres of music (country, easy listening) that aren't covered. He sticks more to the trendy stuff. As I expected, some of the newer phenoms mentioned are people I've never heard of.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Day #22,969

Walk km 18,088-18,091: to breakfast
Walk km 18,091-18,106: Meetup walk from Poco Centre to Pitt Meadows

Meetup walkers
approx km 18,098 Citadel Landing

Friday, November 7, 2014

Day #22,967-968

Walk km 18,063-18,075: testwalk Pitt Meadows to Coquitlam
Walk km 18,075-18,088: Meetup walk Metrotown to Sappertan Station

approx km 18,064 over the Pitt River (between Pitt Meadows and Port Coquitlam)

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Day #22,965-966

Walk km 18,041-18,050: Meetup walk around Stanley Park
Walk km 18,050-18,063: Metrotown to Robert Burnaby Park
bush over the trail
approx km 18,059 Robert Burnaby Park

Movie #2587: Satan's Bed (various, 1965)
Loved it! This is supposed to be just another cheapie sexploitation/violence film but for some reason I found it almost rivetting. Because Yoko Ono (!) was the star? Don't think so. Some great forgotten director? Nope, it took 3 guys to direct this. So, why then? Dunno.
Satan (and his bed) are not in this film but Yoko does work hard at making her bed. First, when she's put in a hotel room, she removes the mattress from the bed so she can sleep on the floor. When she is kidnapped and held in a rundown firetrap of an apartment, she tries to make a bed out of old newspapers.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Day #22,964

Walk km 18,037-18,041: to Main Street Station
Movie #2586: The Gold Racket (1937, Louis J Gasnier)
Totally useless of course. The only purpose to watching these things is to get an idea of what folks where fed when they attended a cheapo double feature back in '37.
In this case, they get a a story that ain't worth the telling and music that is just plain painful to hear. Fuzzy Knight is a name you definately want to avoid.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Day #22,962-963

Walk km 18,007-18,026: Meetup walk SFU to Sapperton via Lake City Way
Walk km 18,026-18,037: Meetup walk around Bridgeport
a tree house
approx km 18,033 Burkesville (Sea Island)

Movie #2585: The Fat Man (1951, William Castle)
Pretty good effort from a young William Castle (before all the gimicks). Easy to follow plot in this comedy/crime drama as the murder victim is "Roy Clark" played by pre-star Rock Hudson.