Gunslinging Dentist?

Doc Holliday, gunslinger, deputy marshal, gambler and forever connected, through his friendship with Wyatt Earp, to the famous gunfight at the O.K. Corral.

Before I go on…if you are looking for historical accuracy, you won’t find it here. Just a look at Doc Holliday in Tombstone (1993). So, where was I?

Oh yes. So…having watched him in Tombstone played by Val Kilmer, you probably know that he was suffering from tuberculosis. You’ll also know that he was an avid gambler (which I believe was a respectable profession back in the day). Doc Holliday, born John Henry Holliday, continues gambling and drinking despite his illness.

oie_yqU5SVcKigzSWhat never fails to amaze me (and, I really admire him for it), is that, no matter how ill he is, he is there for his friend Wyatt. As for Val Kilmer, to me he is the star in this movie portraying the sickly, and later dying, Doc so convincingly. What a fabulous character both externally and internally. A man, who claims he wasn’t as ill as he looked so he could face Johnny Ringo rather than have Wyatt take the risk. Or, who got out there to ride posse and did what needed doing despite feeling dreadful. “I’m in my prime” he proudly announces when Johnny Ringo questions if he has also retired from the law despite his obvious suffering.

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“I’m in my prime”

What I appreciate is that he doesn’t rely on the excuse that he is sick and therefore has no need to put himself out there…quite the contrary, I think he knows his days are numbered and therefore makes sure he puts himself out there. What does he have to lose, after all? I think his last scene emphasises this in that he asks Wyatt to leave before he dies – the Doc Holliday doesn’t want to be seen as vulnerable.

But, can you imagine him treating your pearly whites? Didn’t think so. Yes, he was also a dentist, having been admitted to the degree at the Pennsylvania College of Dental Surgery. He even worked in a dental practice before heading to a warmer climate because of his tuberculosis. While Tombstone doesn’t mention this directly, there is reference to the fact that he is an educated man in the wonderful bar-scene “duel” with him and Johnny Ringo (Michael Biehn, also fantastic in this role) showing off their Latin and gun-spinning talents.

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Quite an interesting character this Doc Holliday. Isn’t he? And perfect for this Medicine in the Movies Blogathon as he is both a patient and doctor.

As for Tombstone, if you haven’t watched this one, it’s high time you do. A wonderful movie narrated by Robert Mitchum and starring a host of well known actors including Kurt Russell, Sam Elliot, Bill Paxton, Powers Booth and many, many more.

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The Lake House (2 Reel Quirky Cats (P)reviews No 2)

(A Random Trailer (P)review)

My guilty pleasure selection for our 2 Reel Quirky Cats collaboration is The Lake House (2006). With so many choices, it was realweegiemidget‘s guilty pleasure Point Break (1991) that reminded me of Keanu Reeves and voila! my selection:

The Lake House has Sandra Bullock and Keanu Reeves both living in a lake house 2 years apart yet at the same time (if that makes sense). They discover a method of communicating by means of letters left in the postbox. Gradually they fall in love despite the time gap.

Tagline: What if you found the one you were meant for… but you lived 2 years apart?

I’d originally found out about this one from my mother who out of the blue (and to my surprise) had a conversation with me along the lines of “There’s a movie coming out I want to watch. Will you come along?”, “Oh, ok? Which one? You don’t normally know what is showing”, “Keanu Reeves is in it. I like him”…well, I never…

Despite having watched this movie a number of times, this is the first time I’ve actually seen the trailer. It has been cut together really beautifully and gives a good idea as to what the story is about but, thank goodness, without giving away anything (or too much). What it does do, is give me the shivers (the good ones) because I love watching the snippets showing the communication between the two and their relationship forming. And all in an “unrushed” pace, taking its time. Who wouldn’t be curious as to how a love with a time gap could feel more real than one experienced in the same time sphere? How will this all turn out? When you finally get to watching it in full, it will be just as lovely.

In fact, when I’ve finished writing up this post, I’m going to pull out the DVD for a watch. I’ve been tempted 😉 Perfect winter watching (yes, it is just about winter here) with a cup of hot chocolate.

Despite the many criticisms and potential plot holes (which I don’t look out for), I love this movie purely for the tale. Not being a fan of time-travel movies, this one was different. Enjoyable. Sandra Bullock and Keanu Reeves once again work well together and I almost enjoy them more here than in Speed. I’ve just read that the dog Jack was named after Keanu‘s character in Speed in honour of the two leads. How true this is, I don’t know. But hey…sounds fun. Oh, and the music is courtesy of Rachel Portman who always gives us wonderful soundtracks.

realweegiemidget has her thoughts on this one here. If you’re up to adding your few tweets’ worth then head over to @2ReelQuirkyCats on Twitter.

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The Search for Screwball…

So, it is only thanks to this wonderful world of blogging (more specifically, a certain blogger) that I’ve come to understand the term “Screwball Comedy”. Ok, so, maybe not understand, but rather encounter the term. For me, romantic comedies were just romantic comedies. Yes, I’ve seen many of those which are classified as screwball but didn’t think much of the definition. Only when this Addicted to Screwball Blogathon came up, did I decide to look a bit deeper into this sub-genre…a search for screwball.

What is a screwball comedy and which one of the “modern” or “new-ish” movies I enjoy can be placed into this genre? Let’s have a look:

Obviously, it is a comedy (and strictly speaking, I think, comes from the 1930s and 40s) but the emphasis is funny/farce/slapstick which results in a bit of a goofy courtship, so, sorry but no prince charming approach. And, definitely some agony and pain involved but not the emotional, romantic type, no, the less theatrical more physical not-to-be-taken-too-seriously type. I’ve also read that often, the poor guy in the relationship has not an inkling that he is even in this warped courtship. The leading lady, wacky and offbeat, drives the relationship and often encounters a rival for affection for the poor bloke in question. There tend to be exaggerated situations coming from bantering battles between the “leads”. Oh dear, screwball life really is oddball, isn’t it?

Now that I think I know what Screwball Comedy is, time to find some movies that might fit the bill. Being a techie, out comes Excel and a list of the recent-ish movies I’ve seen that are “comedy” or “romantic comedy” is made. Zero in on wacky leading ladies, followed by a battle of the genders/comic courtship. Finally, gut-feel to discard what doesn’t feel right. Here are a few that I came up with…apologies if I’m way off the mark but I tried:

The Truth About Cats and Dogs

Addicted to Love

Mr. and Mrs. Smith

I’m with Lucy

New in Town

Watching the Detectives

One Fine Day

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Once again, apologies if I’m totally off the mark or left any out. Not such an easy thing to classify, I’ve discovered.

References:
Gehring, Wes D, “Romantic vs. Screwball Comedy: Charting the Difference”, 16 Oct 2002, Scarecrow Press

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The Lost Boys (1987) – Decades Blogathon

We’re onto Day 3 of the Decades Blogathon – ‘7’ edition – hosted by myself and Tom from the brilliant blog Thomas J. The blogathon focuses on movies that were released in the seventh year of the decade. Tom and I are running a different entry each day (we’ll also reblog the other’s post) and […]

via Decades Blogathon – The Lost Boys (1987) — three rows back

Or read it here: (more…)

Point Break (2 Reel Quirky Cats (P)reviews No 1)

(A Random Trailer (P)review)

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Finally I can reveal realweegiemidget‘s guilty pleasure: Point Break (1991). If you haven’t seen it yet (like me), then here’s the trailer:

From what I’ve seen and read, an FBI agent goes undercover amongst a group of surfers he thinks are behind a number of bank robberies.

I’ve been meaning to watch this one for years because I enjoy watching Keanu Reeves. Having said this, the strange thing is that I’d never watched the trailer until now. It comes across as a great fun 90s movie with all the action, romance, drama and sport rolled into one.

Rookie agent Johnny Utah (Reeves) and his senior/mentor/partner Angelo Pappas (Gary Busey) appear to make a fine team with some comic moments. Bodhi (Patrick Swayze) heads up the suspect gang (well, I think it is the suspect gang). From the look of things, our two leads form a friendship that ultimately has Johnny Utah questioning his loyalties. Might be a bit of the cliché situation but hey…looks fun regardless.

The trailer breaks up sections nicely…there’s the whole action/police type setup which then totally changes pace to all the mushy romantic bits and ends with all the extreme sports shots. Going to be interesting to find out how these all tie up.

I’m off to give it a watch…in the meantime, why don’t you head over to @2ReelQuirkyCats for your thoughts on this guilty pleasure? I’ll pop in there too. Have fun!

Or, click on the image below to head over to realweegiemidget and her thoughts (she’s seen the movie after all)

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My Five (Classic) Stars…

“The Five Stars Blogathon invites bloggers to list their five favorite movie stars and explain why you love them. It’s that simple. (And, they need to be from the silents to the 70s).”

So, here goes….(apologies if some of these actors still made a few movies after the 70s  but I’m taking the liberty of including them, as to me, they were stars during the classic times and thats I how I got to “know” them). In no particular order:

John Wayne

My childhood hero. Need I say more as to why I love him? Well, “love” may be a bit strong, but more, “admire”. He was the first movie star on my radar. While friends at school didn’t know who he was (they were all into Johnny Depp and Brad Pitt), that didn’t stop me thinking that nobody, but nobody, can leap onto a horse quite like John Wayne. The Duke was (and still is) special to me.

Jane Powell

Not so much Jane Powell, but “Milly” (Seven Brides for Seven Brothers). Oh did I dream of her. Her dresses, her mascara, her will to stand up for herself amongst those 7 brothers. In a way, I still dream a little of that greyish-blue dress she wears while singing “Wonderful, Wonderful Day”. *Sigh* She’s one of the reasons I fell in love with the magic of film.

Gregory Peck

Swoon… 😉

There’s something about Gregory Peck that takes up a whole lot of screen space. Probably, it comes down to the role I was introduced to him by: Duel in the Sun. He’s the bad boy (like you have never seen a bad boy) yet in a deranged way, he’s likeable (well, his likeability comes and goes) but boy oh boy is he something. He pulls this role off perfectly. And then there’s him as “Stretch” in Yellow Sky. One of my favourite movies. But, it comes down to the fact that I simply enjoy watching the younger Gregory Peck. Be it The Big Country or Roman Holiday or any one of his other roles.

Yul Brynner

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Yul Brynner is fantastic in his portrayal of such a variety of characters. Most notably, the contradictory roles of Chris (The Magnificent Seven) where he has such high morals to the Gunslinger (Westworld) where he totally creeped me out. And then again the King of Siam. For me, he’ll forever be the cowboy clad in black saving a village, a role that nobody else can pull off like he did. Smooth, sexy and simply swoon-worthy.

Paul Newman

Paul Newman (always the young one in my mind as those are the movies I’ve seen). Another childhood hero. For me, he’s Andrew Craig, Luke, Butch Cassidy, Henry Gondorff and all those classic roles. With his striking blue eyes and his screen presence , he’s always a pleasure to watch.

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