REVIEW | Becoming Cary Grant

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Recently, I watched a very interesting documentary film called Becoming Cary Grant that premiered on Showtime on June 9th. The film is about the life of actor Cary Grant, who is known as one of Hollywood’s leading men from the 1940-50’s working with such directors like Alfred Hitchcock.

Cary Grant was born in Bristol, England in 1904. His given name was Archibald Leach, which while he was on tour in the U.S. he mostly used the nickname “Archie” with his last name as his persona. It wasn’t until he moved on to making big budget movies that he finally changed his name and became an American citizen.

He had been married four times, and only had one child, a daughter named Jennifer with his third wife Dyan Cannon. He was a very private person, as you find out watching the film how sheltered he’d become throughout his time in Hollywood and then you also find out how he became such a bad husband to his wives as well. The documentary draws the story of his life using reenactments, sections of his unpublished biography (read by actor Jonathon Pryce) and then the home videos Cary himself captured throughout the later years of his life.

I find the film to be very interesting, I was thoroughly entertained but before I ever started watching it I kept getting him confused with Clark Gable. They’re both similar between their slick black hair and sturdy roles except for the fact that Clark always had some facial hair! If you like the stars of the 1930’s through the 1950’s, I think you could enjoy this as well!

Have you seen Becoming Cary Grant yet? If you have, what did you like about it?

REVIEW | Disgraced

Last time I reviewed a basketball themed documentary because it was still March Madness, well on the 31st, I watched another one that was similar, but instead of a happy ending this one wasn’t…

Showtime premiered Disgraced and it was about an incident that happened at Baylor University in 2003 involving the entire basketball team. A college student and basketball player Patrick Dennehy, was shot and killed by another team member who was supposedly was his best friend. Patrick and the one who shot him, Carlton Dotson were again supposedly paranoid about another teammate Harvey Thomas and his friend and cousin, Larry Johnson after having them over. The story goes that both Harvey and Larry had guns on them and were using them to scare the boys from accusing them for any wrong doing.

Later, after feeling extra paranoid of their situation, they in turn buy their own set of guns and told their other roommates that if Harvey or anybody else came looking for them to not let them in. So clearly, this raises some flags I would say! I guess though, they went to their coaches and asked if they should go to the police, their main coach Dave Bliss, said to keep things “in house” meaning don’t tell anyone as I imagined. This is where things began to get very strange because within a few days later Patrick Dennehy ends up missing and it’s within these days that people are now looking into the team and the coaches of Baylor University.

I was very much amazed by the amount of things discussed or in some cases, not talked about it within the mystery of how Patrick is dead and how Carlton, who was like a brother to him, would kill him. I mean, if they were as paranoid as they said to be, the mental statuses of Carlton kind of makes sense. You’ll learn more about what I mean when you watch the film. My thing was what the coaches did though, assistant coach Abar Rouse recorded the head coach, Dave Bliss as they began to create a cover up for the rest of their team on how much they knew about the situation of their players. Now a lot of people would think this was wrong and that he should have went to the coach and told him about his feelings about it, but like everybody said he was literally backed into a corner and Bliss even told him “I can hire and fire assistant coaches at will” now would you want to tell him after hearing that? I wouldn’t, I’d probably record him too honestly!

The film was very interesting and like my dad told me too, they’re not the first ones to have this type of scandal and sadly, I don’t think they’ll be the last either.

So did you watch Disgraced yet? What were your thoughts on the documentary?

REVIEW | Perfect In ’76

The month of March is a time for beloved basketball fans and the most dreaded time for anyone who loathes it as well. March Madness is exactly that, it is madness! I’ve sadly just realized that it’s not all about college basketball though, for high schools around the United States have their sectionals, regionals, and state championships all in this time too! I don’t know why I am just now figuring that out, but I am.

Showtime took it upon themselves to use it to feature a number of specials on the network for any basketball fans, and since I go back and forth with loving and hating it, (yes, there was a time where I’ve hated basketball!) I found a documentary that I thought would be cool to watch despite the fact that it would premiere on the weekend of my papaw’s passing. I recorded it and hoped that maybe I would leave it to the weekend after so I would (hopefully) get through it in one piece. I barely made a day!

It was called “Perfect In ’76” and was narrated by a fellow Hoosier and musician John Mellencamp and the whole thing discusses the perfect season of Indiana University’s Hoosiers in 1976, it included some of the former players on the team and announcers whether on local TV news stations or radio. It also had the infamous coach Bobby Knight talking about not only the undefeated season in ’76 but also the near-perfect season of the year before when they were beat by Kentucky in the NCAA championship.

One of the things that they first show is Indiana’s landscape of both city life with the campus in Bloomington and rural country sides that is probably the most known feature about the state. The first thing that John explains to the viewer is that “Basketball was invented in Massachusetts, but it was made for Indiana” and included that children were raised on basketball and IU was at the heart of it all. Everything about this scene was true, at least in my family.

My family is a fairly large basketball family, it ranges from IU, Butler, Purdue; my sister’s fiance is actually a fan of North Carolina, so he’s the only non-Indiana team in our family, which according to a number of my family members my papaw seemed to hate them with a passion. He was probably not happy how the 2017 NCAA championship ended. Anyways, this man would tape (well, most of the time it was my nana setting it up) almost every game on television so he could watch it whenever he was at home. We’ve had bookshelves and cabinets full of VCR tapes of basketball games around that house! I remember the late 90’s and we’d have family in the living room watching the game and all of us grandkids on the floor not exactly understanding what all the excitement was about basketball, later on majority of my family played basketball in school, I think everybody but my cousin Amy did it outside of elementary school.

Back to the documentary though, I watched it not really understanding some of the stats – I don’t know all of the correct terms and what the difference between a “forward” and “guard” but I have never had a problem with watching it! So whenever they were discussing the different players and Bobby Knight wanting a better offense when he first became the head coach of the team. I think it all went in one ear and our the other. I really liked it though, it was interesting! We all think of Bobby Knight as this angry dude who threw a chair across the court and got escorted off, but to see him like this especially in the last scene where they’re all sitting in the diner and he makes a speech to his former players and gets choked up a bit about how amazing they were and how he always appreciated them. It changes what we see in this person that has such an intimidating persona.

What I really found sort of hilarious, is that literally four days before I watched this Indiana University actually fired their current coach Tom Crean and everybody in my family about had a field day with this news because my papaw called it a long time ago! A month earlier, Bobby Knight had called into a radio and expressed his feelings against his former bosses and I couldn’t contained myself, I had to laugh at that! Gave it a few years and Tom will probably do the exact thing same and we’ll be back rolling our eyes at him.

Have you seen this documentary yet? Do you love (or hate) basketball? 

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REVIEW | Roadies

I’m back with another review, this time it’s for a TV show. And no, it’s not Game Of Thrones. I promise you’ll get something like that soon! It won’t be like a proper review like this, but it’ll be close enough!

Anyways, I am going to be talking about the series Roadies this week! It premiered on June 26th on the channel Showtime. I had plans on actually watching it that night. In case I forgot about it I was going to record it, but the more I kept looking into my timer schedule on my DVR, the more I was worried I wouldn’t be able to do anything but watch something totally different. And then I remembered about our On-Demand and so I found it in the “free” slot and decided to download the first episode just three days before it aired. So by the time, this post goes up I’ve probably already watched the second. Sorry!

Since bands and singers go on tours all over the world, they need a crew to help them conduct the production part of the concert. We, as fans, only see the ending result. Roadies are the crew behind the artist or band making sure everything comes full circle. In the first episode, they really captured the essence of what these people do on a daily basis.

I’m a bit concerned about the actual gigs, because I wonder if they’ll have a different opening with every episode? This one they had a band called The Heart And The Hand and they’re, again, a real band. It’s the main band that is mostly made up of actors, which is sort of sad honestly. However, it does shout the question, will there be a different opening in every episode? And apparently the answer to that is yes.

One of the things that I generally liked about it was the fact that had a lot of funny scenes in it. It’s not as serious as I expected it to be but it’s very realistic. I can see the tour and production managers fighting back and forth about different things. I don’t know about emailing a new financial advisor that he’s a “douche-boy asshole” is such a good idea though! I can see almost everything that happened in the first episode “Life Is A Carnival” and I am very excited to see what else goes on with this mix of characters.

I actually liked the whole story; I always think to myself if people in the entertainment industry are going to be able to tell a good and I guess telling a true story about another person or group of people and then how are they going to really show it with a bunch of actors? No, seriously I think about this all the time! They’re adding the actors to the picture, you’ve got Luke Wilson and Carla Gugino who play tour and production managers, while Imogen Poots has the role of aspiring film student, who helps set up the stage. It is a very interesting mix!

So I think I should probably be very honest in this post and say why I’m really watching this show. The reason is because Machine Gun Kelly (using his real name Colson Baker) is in this series and he’s actually acting, he’s playing a real character which I didn’t know that, but makes sense now! My second reason is my Uncle Rick was at one time a real roadie. He helped put together a Motley Crue stage set up. My mom still has the shirt he gave her! And when I saw FFDP I watched the crew set up the equipment and change up the lightning; I thought it was really cool so I figured I’d give it a shot.

Have you watched Roadies yet? If so, what do you like or dislike about it?

I’ve Finally Watched The Tudors!

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Hey guys!

Well, you’ve been following me on Twitter you know that earlier this month I started Showtime’s series The Tudors that was on air from 2007-10. It talked about King Henry VIII in dealing with difference in religious views of himself and his kingdom, plus the stories of how he came to marry six women from 1509 (with Catherine Of Aragon) to 1534 (with Catherine Parr). He fathered three living children: Mary I, Elizabeth I, and Edward VI.

I’m sort of familiar with the story, mostly while he was married to Anne Boelyn, but I realized how much of that marriage that I didn’t know either! I started watching a couple episodes here and there, between Showtime and BBC America. However neither were from the beginning so I didn’t pay too much attention to them. I finally decided to ask my mom to show me how to download them onto my DVR because I was in the mood for a little Jonathan Rhys Meyers and I ended up losing a part of myself for three weeks. I got lucky and I could watch all four seasons for free for the month of February, so I kind of went a little faster and had some all-nighters watching episode after episode! In one night, I watched four episodes! I finished the series as a whole on Valentine’s day. I’ve been going through mini withdrawals ever since!

I generally loved the show! I was surprised with myself on how much I didn’t care of the fashion and locations as much as I’m kind of known to doing whenever I watch historical specials like this. I was seriously into the stories of each character, what significant each one had to the tale of King Henry’s reign. I think Jonathan Rhys Meyers was a brilliant choice to play King Henry VIII as I was very intimidated and felt both happiness and pain throughout the whole thing. He should have won that Golden Globe!

There was one more thing I was disappointed on and that was quite a few characters/actors just kind of jumped off the face of the Earth. From season two to three, we lost Sir Anthony Knivert, Duke of Norfolk, Archbishop Cranmer, and Thomas Tallis. Either I didn’t pay that great deal of attention between these two seasons or all four really left. I was seriously confused why the actor that played Cranmer was talked about through seasons three and four, but never came back to the show!

I find it odd that I’m complaining about a show that hasn’t been on the air since 2010 but oh well!

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The Two Natalie’s.

Like I said before, I knew more about the story of Anne Boelyn, but not as much as I’d like honestly! I’ve seen The Other Boelyn Girl which focuses on the Boelyn sisters, Mary and Anne. So I’m used to Natalie Portman. When I started watching, I fought hard in my mind of how much I could remember what was included in that film and what was different. Of course, the one difference was the fact that Mary had gotten pregnant and the rumors were that he was the father of her child, but he only recognized one illegitimate son by Lady Elizabeth Blout named Henry FitzRoy in 1519

I actually liked Natalie Dormer as Anne Boelyn more than Natalie Portman. She was fierce, powerful and mysteriously wicked. As it’s been a few years since I’ve last seen the film, I do remember not exactly seeing the chemistry between Eric Bana and Natalie Portman as to Jonathan Rhys Meyers and Natalie Dormer. When you can see the deep connection between the actors, you know they’ve sold it! It all felt real to me! I found the end of the Boelyn’s very much upsetting as it did the first time. I felt Anne was tossed into this life without having a voice to say “no” because her father and brother were both at court and had the king’s ear just as much as she did! So when she and George were executed I was very sad. I had grown to love that character so much that it broke my heart. She and Jane Seymour’s deaths where the only ones I cried at the end of their episodes!

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As For Queen Jane Seymour.

Even though I was very confused during that first episode of season three, seeing a totally different actress for Jane Seymour, I ended liking her a little more than I thought I would. Annabelle Wallis was more feminine and older looking as to the first actress that was featured in the last of season three.

She got along with everybody, which after the collapse of Catholic faith and the King basically calling him God, she made things between father and daughters less chaotic! Especially for Princess Elizabeth, as Anne Boelyn was awaiting her death baby Elizabeth was considered a “bastard” to King Henry after he heard rumors of Anne’s alleged affairs and deformity of the last baby she had that died. I feel if it wasn’t for both Jane and Anne Of Cleves, she wouldn’t be allowed to court like Princess Mary and Prince Edward.

When that episode of the birth of the prince loomed, I actually got really upset again!! What is wrong with me?!?! Anyways, I’ve said that you could feel the love between him and Anne, but he looked like he genuinely loved Jane too! He must’ve really loved her because when he died, even though he was still married to Catherine Parr, he is buried with her at St. George Chapel in Windsor Castle.

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I Hated Catherine Howard.

Something that got me while Thomas Crownwell arranged the married of Anne Of Cleves, that Thomas Seymour and Charles Brandon find a young woman at an orphanage to suit this king! In a way, I was thinking in my head, have you people learned anything from Thomas’ mistakes?! 

From that first episode she was brought to court, I knew it wasn’t going to end well. And yes, I had spoiled it for myself beforehand and looked up how she died and her charges. What surprised me the most was Lady Rochford!! I think after going through her husband’s death George Boelyn and sister-in-law Anne Boelyn she’d know better! This technically didn’t seem like it was on accident. In ways, I felt as though she wanted a way out of court and life altogether and thought this was her only shot. She just ended up taking a king’s groomsmen and the Queen down with her!

I felt Catherine Howard was WAYYY too young to succeed to the throne! She wasn’t the ideal queen, as to those who came before and after her, who were proper and had grace surrounding them. There was no comparison to her and Princess Mary as far as they acted out in court. Even her ladies-in-waiting irritated me!

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Testing 1, 2, 3

I’ve always been a little hesitant because I know how big King Henry VIII got later on in his life. So I was really curious before I watched the third and fourth seasons of how big Jonathan would be willing to get for this role. Despite the fact that there are shots and shots of him eating, looking like he had absolutely no control over what he put into his body, the only noticeable changes that were made for Jonathan were his facial and voice at the end of season four. I was really mad that they couldn’t depict him better than that!but once those scenes were finished I kind of forgot about it.

Jonathan Rhys Meyers was brilliant! For like two separate nights I was in a bit of a daze, the first night I watched 3 episodes in one sitting and the other? Almost 5! That ultimately ruined my sleep pattern for a week! Anyways, I was basically stuck in my bed watching the story of his hopeless-romantic-but-if-you-didn’t-produce-a-son-he-found-himself-out-of-the-marriage kind of guy! So that right away tested my ability to watch it.

The second was while he put Catherine of Aragon out of the castle and she lived in poverty while he took up Anne Boelyn as his official mistress. Something usually happens as I watch these historical dramas like this that I didn’t even know I have trapped inside of me until later on after I’ve finished with an episode. I was feeling for every single wife he took on!

I even felt sorry for both Princess Mary and Elizabeth!! It was mostly because he didn’t seem to care about any of them at all, only his needs. Which during the last episode of the series, where in a dream sequence Catherine of Aragon played by Maria Doyle Kennady, Anne Boelyn played by Natalie Dormer, and Jane Seymour played by Annabelle Wallis all come back beyond their graves and haunt Henry for his past sins of annulment, beheading, and not caring about his son, Prince Edward. As early season three appeared Jane Seymour was this gentle, modest Queen and she came back in what felt like to me out of character, but as I thought about it, it wasn’t. He wanted a male heir to the throne, but once he he got it, it was like he lost interest with him altogether. He couldn’t bring Jane back but he could have respect her and love on not only his son but daughters a little more too!

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I Did Not Think This Through!

I did not know Henry Cavil was in this show before I started watching it. When I first saw the opening credits, I was kind of shocked but yet excited because I haven’t seen anything besides Man Of Steel, and the show is of course, before he signed up for Superman. I actually opened my mind a little bit for him as Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk. I was very impressed though. I didn’t genuine like the role until the end of season two. If he hadn’t switched sides that he would have been killed right along George Boelyn on something that he didn’t do!  It was nice to see him outside of Superman for once and into this very gentle giant that was haunted by the lost, troubled souls he helped murder for the rebellion.

When I watched the season four opening credits and seen how long his hair and beard were getting, that about did me over!!! I am my mother’s daughter!

Now that I am finished, are they any other historical fiction shows that I show check out? Don’t worry, Reign is on my list for spring! 

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