Beginning late in the 2011 season defenses began selling out to limit our big plays in the passing game. This prompted the Packers to draft Lacy & Franklin & make a commitment to improve our run game. For the most part this was a success last season. Today Cobb said that the Lions played their safeties wide and covered man-to-man underneath, devoting just six players to stop the run. The coverage often rolled toward Nelson in a Cover-3 look once the ball was snapped. I know AR did not look his best, but when the defense only has 6 in the box we must be able to run the ball. Oline & Lacy could not win one-on-one battles.
Welcome to another edition of Fedya's "Movies to Tivo" thread, for the week of September 22-28, 2014. Last week, I mentioned that the Brewers' season was spilralling out of control, and that disaster is nearly complete. So why not deal with the loss by sitting back and watching some good movies instead? We've got more of the Jewish experience on film on Tuesday night; more pre-Code movies on Friday, and some interesting stuff on other channels as well. As always, all times are in Eastern, unless otherwise mentioned.
TCM is putting the spotlight on gorgeous Brigitte Bardot on Monday night in honor of her upcoming 80th birthday which will be on Sunday. (Beef would still hit her.) The night kicks off at 8:00 PM with And God Created Woman, the movie that made her a household name. Bardot playe Juliete, a young woman living with foster parents in St. Tropez on the French Riviera. Wealthy and much older Eric (Curt Jurgens) wants her, but she wants young Antoine (Christian Marquand), but he only wants a one-night stand. Since Juliete already has a reputation for that, her foster parents are about to send her back to the orphanage, ut Antoine's younger brother Michel (Jean-Louis Trintignant, whom you might recall from Z) takes pity on her and marries her, trying to make a respectable woman out of her. And then Antoine and Eric's parents, who own a small shipyard, sell the shipyard to Eric, and his return causes problems. Of course, the reason to watch this is for erotic Brigitte Bardot.
In among the Bardot movies is the short Crashing the Water Barrier, at about 1:18 AM Tuesday (or following Plucking the Daisy). This short focuses on Scotsman Donald Campbell, son of a prominent speedboat racer who himself would go into racing speedboats and trying to set speed records in them. In particular, the short looks at one of those attempts, on Lake Mead, and all the difficult preparations that go into trying to set a speedboat record. It's quite difficult as you need extremely calm water and no wind, and you have to be able to do the measured mile in both directions to set the record. The short is also in color, which is nice. What the filmmakers couldn't know is that about a decade after making this, Campbell would die in a speedboat accident.
FXM is also running a Bardo movie this week, although the movie isn't really about her: Dear Brigitte, at 1:00 PM Tuesday. The star is James Stewart, playing a college professor of English who doesn't care for the hard sciences. This turns out ot be a bit of a problem when it's discovered that his young son Erasmus (Billy Mumy) is excellent at math. Our Professor is kind of nonplussed by this, but Erasmus' sister has a boyfriend (50s singer Fabian) who needs help with his homework, Erasmus can help. Meanwhile, a couple of other guys realize that the kid's math skills can be used to play the ponies and make good money betting on them. Erasmus, for his part, simply wants to meet Brigitte Bardot (who wouldn't), and he and dad finally get to in the final scene. She really has little to do with the plot, but the movie is named for her because it's the one form of publicity Bardot didn't think to disallow the moviemakers from using her.
Tuesday night on TCM brings the fourth of five nights of the "Projected Image" series of the Jewish experience on film. Anti-semitism is the overriding theme of this night, starting at 8:00 PM with The House of Rothschild. You may recognize the name Rothschild as a family of international bankers, and thsi films dramatizes how the family got that reptuation. George Arliss has a double role as Mayer, the patriarch of the family who started the dynasty in what is now Germany at the end of the 18th century, and as Mayer's eldest son Nathan, who goes off to London, since Dad just before he died told his sons to go to the various European capitals to create a network, which the Rothschild siblings then use to finance the people allied against Napoleon when they face Napoleon at Waterloo. George Arliss' real-life wife Florence plays the wife of George's Nathan, while there's a romantic subplot involving Robert and Loretta Young. There's a finale that was filmed in Technicolor, but I think the last time the movie showed up on TCM, that finale was only in black-and-white.
This Wednesday is the last Wednesday of the month so it's the last night of Melvyn Douglas' turn as TCM's Star of the Month. Once again, the movies continue into Thursday morning, with films like One Is a Lonely Number (also known as Two Is a Happy Number at 7:15 AM. Douglas isn't the star any longer; by now he was doing the supporting roles that would bring him his two Oscars -- indeed Hud, which brought the first Oscar, is on at 9:45 PM Wednesday. The star here is Trish Van Devere, playing a married woman who finds one day that her husband is just up and leaving her, packing his bags and going. So our newly unmarried woman has to get a good job (she winds up working as a lifeguard!?) and try to find love again, all while going through the divorce and figuring out whether to take her ex-husband for everything she can get, or just get the divorce over with. Douglas plays the part of a good friend in the local produce store owner.
In the 1950s, it wasn't uncommon for UK studios to bring in an American actor to star in a movie they were making, so that it would make distributing the movie in the US an easier proposition. An example of this is the film Lady of Vengeance, Thursday at 12:15 PM on TCM. The star here is Dennis O'Keefe, playing Marshall, an American living in London who owns a chain of newspapers. He's got a ward in the form of pretty young Melissa (Eileen Elton), but she throws herself in front of a train at the start of the pictiure! But she's left a final request for her guardian Marshall: find the guy who was responsible for her suicide and make the guy suffer. So Marshall investigates, treating everybody around him like dirt, until he finds somebody who looks like he could be the guy but probably isn't, and then finds anotherm an who probably is the guy.
On Thursday night, TCM is spending a night with the films of George C. Scott, starting with the one that won Scott an Academy Award: Patton, at 8:00 PM. Scott plays George S. Patton, who was one of the leading generals of hte US Army in Europe in World War II. The movie portrays Patton first fighting in North Africa, and then in Europe, leading up to his untimely death in a jeep accident in December 1945. Patton was a man who was practically born to be a soldier, and when he had to fight a war, he could be a mercilessly good soldier -- and also merciless to anybody who didn't see the virtue of fighting a war the way he saw it. The result is that although he had a bunch of brilliant successes, he also made a lot of enemies amongst the other generals. Chief among those other generals is Omar Bradley, played here by Karl Malden.
A movie that's back on FXM after a long absence is Prince of Players, at 9:15 AM Friday and 6:00 AM Saturday. Junius Brutus Booth (Raymond Massey) was an itinerant actor in the mid 19th century and father to Edwin (Richard Burton) who would go on after his father's death to become one of the most prominent American Shakespearean actors of the second half of the 19th century.. However, there's only one problem. Edwin had a brother named John (John Derek) who was much an inferior actor and a hothead to boot. When the Civil War came up, John sympathized with the south, and when the north won the war, John responded by shooting up Abraham Lincoln, which obviously led to some difficulties for Edwin. This movie focuses mostly on Edwin's point of view, how he had to keep working to pay off debts, how he had a tragic first marriage, and how having a notorious criminal for a brother affected him.
Friday on TCM means another full day of pre-Codes, including one for [catts]: Loose Ankles, at 10:45 AM. (Well, I don't know how thick any of the ankles are.) Loretta Young, who was about 17 when she made this one, plays the daughter in a wealthy family where the grandmother has just died. The family, and especially Loretta, stand to inherit a lot of money, but there's a catch: Loretta has to marry somebody who's suitably scandal-free to be acceptable to a committe selected by Grandma before she died. The rest of the familiy is greedy in wanting their money now, so Loretta says the hell with it, and puts a personal ad in the paper looking for a nice young man who will help scandalize her. And boy do those nice young men come ready to scandalize the family name! Geting the lead among those is Douglas Fairbanks Jr., although there are quite a few others setting up severl mildly racy scenes.
This week sees a blaxploitation film in the TCM Underground slot: Sweet Jesus, Preacherman, at 4:15 AM Sunday. Roger E. Mosley, whom you may recall from the TV series Magnum, PI, stars as a hitman in Los Angeles working for mob boss William Smith, who gets sent to South Central LA to figure out who's screwing with the racket in that district. To maintain a disguise, our hitman is sent there as the new preacher that a local church is expecting. Mosley eventually figures out that both his boss and the bigwigs in the government (a state senator played by Michael Pataki) are double crosing him, so he decides to take revenge. Watch for future Jeffersons star Marla Gibbs as one of the church officials. Not as good as the Pam Grier movies, but there's extensive location shooting in South Central as it was in 1973.
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