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31  Other/Miscellaneous / Off-Topic Discussion / Re: Phantom Thread (2017) on: March 01, 2018, 07:31:02 PM
I really expected the film to be boring, especially given the lack of enthusiasm of the PTA lovers. It wasn't at all. I even found it pretty easy to watch, which isn't something I expect from a PTA film these days. I mean I totally get how some (terrible) people can find The Master, Inherent Vice or There Will Be Blood "excruciating", but Phantom Thread? What kind of shit do you find entertaining?

There Will Be Blood is a very good movie
32  Other/Miscellaneous / Off-Topic Discussion / Re: Phantom Thread (2017) on: March 01, 2018, 02:33:36 PM
shit shit shit

fanboys fanboys fanboys

force yourself to like an excruciating piece of crap  Grin
33  Other/Miscellaneous / Off-Topic Discussion / Re: THE OLYMPICS THREAD! on: February 27, 2018, 04:41:13 PM
Don’t act like you cared:I now know what you’re really interested at the Olympic, and it isn’t the medals...

now I know why you are not interested in the Olympics.

France doesn't have an Olympian half as hot as Lyndsey Vonn  Tongue
34  Other/Miscellaneous / Off-Topic Discussion / Re: THE OLYMPICS THREAD! on: February 26, 2018, 06:46:23 AM
US finished fourth in golds (9, one below its all-time high from 2010) and fourth in overall medals (23). Some heads have to roll ...

But hey, there were some great moments (gold in snowboarding slopestyle amd halfpipe, gold in women’s hockey over Canada!!!)

Just 2 1/2 years to the Summer Games in Tokyo 2020!  Smiley Smiley Smiley
35  Other/Miscellaneous / Off-Topic Discussion / Re: Rate The Last Movie You Saw on: February 23, 2018, 12:23:37 PM
Crossfire (1947) 8/10 (TCM; third viewing)
36  Other/Miscellaneous / Off-Topic Discussion / Re: THE OLYMPICS THREAD! on: February 23, 2018, 12:09:48 AM
It’s been a somewhat disappointing Olympics for the USA ...
37  Other/Miscellaneous / Off-Topic Discussion / Re: Film-Noir Discussion/DVD Review Thread on: February 20, 2018, 04:33:55 PM
TCM Noir Alley will now air (the same movie) twice each weekend: midnight Saturday night ET, in addition to the existing 10 AM ET Sunday time slot. (No difference for me because I use DVR anyway)
38  Other/Miscellaneous / Off-Topic Discussion / Re: Farewell, My Lovely (1975) on: February 19, 2018, 05:39:35 PM

Disappointing to hear. I still have not even purchased the DVD. I have this as a digital download on my iTunes (so I can only watch it on my computer screen, not my TV screen). 

Question is if I should get one of these subpar discs, or wait until such time as a truly good disc may be released ....
39  Other/Miscellaneous / Off-Topic Discussion / Re: DJ and D&D Go to the Symphony on: February 19, 2018, 05:30:51 PM
Good review (and great snarky commentary on ES!). I like the little Dessner music I've heard (as it happens, I was just listening to the CD he appears on with J. Greenwood before reading your post), so I probably would have enjoyed that part of the program more than you. The Emperor Concerto at speed sounds like an interesting approach. Anyway, I'm glad you enjoyed the show. I think the acoustics at Carnegie Hall are the best in the world. Better than at Lincoln Center (which are very good).
Regarding acoustics: maybe I am just used to heavy-metal concerts, which are booming. I like all music loud - including classical. But I really know almost nothing about classical music, so any criticisms I ever make should be taken with a grain of salt.

I would not say that the entire concerto was especially fast – I only noticed it particularly in the opening.

40  Other/Miscellaneous / Off-Topic Discussion / Re: DJ and D&D Go to the Symphony on: February 18, 2018, 12:25:32 AM
I was at Carnegie Hall Thursday night (first time).

Program page here

Mozart's 40th Symphony
A new musical piece composed by Bryce Dessner, for orchestra and mezzo soprano
And Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 5 "Emperor"

Featuring the New York-based Orchestra of St. Lukes, conducted by Robert Spano

Standing outside the hall before the show, who did I see but Elliot Spitzer! Yes, the man who was attorney general of New York state, then elected governor, then had to resign in disgrace after being busted for hiring whores in the Mayflower Hotel in Washington. Particularly notorious because the whores reportedly said that during sex he wore his high black socks!  Evil He tried a political comeback a few years ago, running for New York City Comptroller, but lost in the Democratic primary. Recently, stories have emerged in the tabloids, he has been involved with some Russian call girl working in New York City, she accused him of attacking her, she went to a hospital, he showed up there in some costume thinking people wouldn't recognize him, she was then busted for trying to extort him, etc. etc. etc. Bottom line is that he has become a national punchline. And he was standing on the corner of 57th Street and 7th Avenue in Manhattan Thursday evening just before 8 pm, looking down at his phone, presumably waiting for his ... company? ... to show up. I was going to shout "fucking steamroller!" but my friend who I was with politely asked me not to, so for her sake, I didn't.

Our seats were on the floor, 17 rows back, just to the left of center – i.e., perfectly aligned with the pianist's hands. More on that later.

First up was Mozart's 40th Symphony. Everyone is familiar with the opening bars of this symphony it's a popular cellphone ringtone. This is one of Mozart's most famous symphonies. And in my opinion, it sucks. Opening movement is ok, maybe there is a bit of good in the second movement; third and fourth are shit. In short, it sucks. Happily, it is less than half an hour long. I had no interest in this piece.

Next up was a new piece of music composed by Bryce Dessner
The piece, called "Voy a dormir," is from four poems by the late Argentine poet Alfonsina Storni

Each of this piece's four movements is one poem by Storni. Each of the four poems is sung by a mezzo-soprano, with orchestral backing. The mezzo-soprano is Kelly O'Connor – the piece was composed by Dessner specifically for her, and she helped select the four Storni poems that would comprise the piece. The title "Voy a dormir," ("I'm going to sleep") comes from her last poem. Storni had a very difficult life, and had breast cancer. In October 1938, she mailed the poem "Voy a dormir" to a newspaper, and shortly thereafter, her body was found washed up on the beach; she is believed to have drowned herself.

This was the world premiere of the song "Voy a dormir," and for the sake of music, I hope this is the last time it is ever performed. It is shit. The poem sung mournfully with orchestral backing. Absolute shit. I also couldn't hear O'Connor as loudly as I'd have liked, ditto with the symphony throughout; not terribly low, but not as loud as I'd have liked. Maybe I'm deaf or maybe it's just that Carnegie Hall has crappy acoustics.

I refused to cheer after this song.

So we go to intermission. You must think I'm having a miserable time. And you'd be WRONG. I came to this show almost entirely for one reason: the Emperor Concerto. If you're unfamiliar with it, here is great a version from last year at Lincoln Center )

At Carnegie Hall, the pianist was Jeremy Denk

The performance was great!

Opening of first movement was played a bit faster than what I'm used to ("what I'm used to")is this performance I linked to above, and a an audio recording, i think from the 70's, by Arthur Rubinstein, conducted by Daniel Barenboim), but I guess that just displayed the pianist's talents even more?  Wink It was a terrific experience. As I mentioned, I lined up my tickets to have seats directly in line with the pianist's hands. Too far to the right, and you can only see his face. Too far to the left, and you can perhaps see his hands, but also his back. My seat was literally on a direct line with Denk's bench, so I could see both the speed in which he moved his hands, and also his facial expressions. And Denk is quite expressive! Often, while he is playing, he is not looking down at his hands, but to his right, out at the crowd, smiling, sort of interacting with the audience! And during the times he is not playing and it's just the symphony, his hands are often moving in the air, along with the conductor's. (Note: During this piano concerto, I could not see Spano, the conductor, at all, because he was blocked by the piano. But that was totally ok.  Smiley )

The Emperor Concerto is one of my favorite pieces of music in the world, and any night on which you can see it performed live is a great night!

The ovations for the orchestra, Spano and Denk, were long, loud, and well-deserved. As we were leaving, I noticed that Dessner had been sitting just a few seats over from me. I was in too good a mood to tell him that he had composed a piece of shit.  Evil
41  Other/Miscellaneous / Ennio Morricone / Edda Dell'Orso 2014 interview on: February 16, 2018, 10:46:49 AM
42  Other/Miscellaneous / Ennio Morricone / Re: Danish National Symphony on: February 16, 2018, 10:42:25 AM
more from the Danish National Symphony Orchestra




43  Other/Miscellaneous / Off-Topic Discussion / Re: THE OLYMPICS THREAD! on: February 14, 2018, 08:36:06 AM
No probably about it, speed skating is the only sport we dominate in  Grin Ireen Wüst has now won a gold medal at 4 consecutive Winter Olympics, incredible...

IMO, short-track is much more interesting than speedskating  Wink
44  Other/Miscellaneous / Off-Topic Discussion / Re: Rate The Last Movie You Saw on: February 14, 2018, 12:56:44 AM
Zorba the Greek (1964) 7.5/10

Great performance by Anthony Quinn; the two women were pretty good, too. Great cinematography.
45  Other/Miscellaneous / Off-Topic Discussion / Re: THE OLYMPICS THREAD! on: February 14, 2018, 12:20:19 AM
U.S. dominating snowboarding, winning gold in men's and women's slopestyle and halfpipe (and bronze in the women's halfpipe).

The men's halfpipe was amazing: Shaun White got an incredible 94.25 (out of a possible 100) on his first run to go to #1. On the second run, a Japanese guy got 95.25 and White washed out. So it'd all come down to the third run (each competitor has three runs, and only the best score counts).
Remember, White had won gold in 2006 and 2010, but finished a disappointing fourth in 2014.
So now, back to 2018,  it all comes down to the final run. White was in second place, guaranteed at least a silver, but needed to beat the amazing score of 95.25 for gold. White was the last competitor to run .......... and he BOOMED a 97.75!!! Incredible. You can watch the video here (you can skip the first 90 seconds)


As usual, the Dutch are dominating speedskating (and probably not much else?  Huh )


You can follow the up-to-the-minute medal count at
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