Thursday, May 30, 2024


My son called a family movie night, and so we watched the Adam Sandler Netflix movie Murder Mystery. The comedy starred  Adam SandlerJennifer Aniston, and Luke Evans, and follows a married couple who are caught up in a murder investigation on a billionaire's yacht. It was released on June 14, 2019, by Netflix. It received mixed reviews from critics. A sequel was released by Netflix on March 31, 2023.

In June 2012, it was reported that Charlize Theron had signed on to star in Murder Mystery, a mystery-comedy then set to be directed by John Madden, from James Vanderbilt's screenplay. Before the announcement, the project had been set up at Walt Disney Studios with Kevin McDonald set to direct. In April 2013, it was reported that Colin Firth, Adam Sandler and Emily Blunt had joined the cast - although, representatives for Firth and Blunt denied that they were boarding the film. In September 2013, it was reported that both Theron and Madden had left the project and that Anne Fletcher was now set to direct for TWC-Dimension; Theron eventually received an executive producer credit on the film, along with her studio, Denver and Delilah Productions, listed in the film.

In March 2018, it was announced that Sandler and Jennifer Aniston had signed to star, reuniting them after Just Go with It, their 2011 film. Kyle Newacheck directed, still with Vanderbilt's script, and the film premiered on Netflix as part of Sandler's distribution deal. In June 2018, it was announced that Luke Evans, Gemma Arterton, David Walliams, Erik Griffin, John Kani, Shioli Kutsuna, Luis Gerardo Méndez, Adeel Akhtar, Ólafur Darri Ólafsson, Dany Boon and Terence Stamp had joined the cast.

Principal photography on the film began on June 14, 2018 in Montréal. In late July 2018, filming began in Italy at locations including Santa Margherita Ligure, Lake Como, and Milan (where most of the scenes set in Monaco were actually shot) also using vehicles and uniforms of the Carabinieri.

I am not a huge fan of Adam Sandler, but his usual schtick is not present in this film. His character lies a lot to his wife and family in the film so not a fan of that, but he has good chemistry with Jennifer Aniston. Aniston is good in everything she does. I would have had a harsher review if I had paid for the movie, but this was a great Netflix movie. I'm sure my son will want to watch the sequel which is also on Netflix. If you are looking for fun entertainment to escape from the world, then you will like this movie mystery...

MY RATING: 7 out of 10


A Manhattan townhouse that the iconic actress Katharine Hepburn called home for decades has hit the market.

Located within Turtle Bay Gardens, the 164-year-old property was owned by the late leading lady from 1931 until her death, at age 96, in 2003.

Hepburn’s estate sold the four-bedroom, four-bathroom abode for $3.9 million in 2004, to the current seller, who is now seeking $7.2 million.

“The owners purchased the house as a pied a terre and because they have been coming to NYC less frequently, they made the difficult decision to sell,” said Lisa Larson, of Sotheby’s International Realty, who holds the listing. “It was a tough decision as the renovation and interior design of the house was a labor of love and they have thoroughly enjoyed the house over the years.”

Built in the late 1800s, 244 E. 49th St. measures in at 4,560 square feet, not including the enormous shared garden.Spread over five stories, the 19-foot-wide residence features six fireplaces, a restored wooden staircase and Hepburn’s still-intact mirrored vanity...

Wednesday, May 29, 2024


My son is not a movie person. He is just like my wife, so when he wanted to watch a movie I jumped on it. We watched a silly comedy by the name of The Out-Laws. The Out-Laws is a 2023 American action comedy film directed by Tyler Spindel, written by Evan Turner and Ben Zazove, produced by Adam Sandler, Adam DeVine, and Allen Covert. It stars Adam DeVine, Nina Dobrev, Ellen Barkin, and Pierce Brosnan. The plot follows a bank manager on his wedding week whose bank is robbed by criminals that he very strongly suspects might be his future in-laws which gets proven right as he works with them when a crime boss that the criminals made enemies abducts his fiancé. The Out-Laws was released by Netflix on July 7, 2023.

The cast was excellent, but the two that stole the movie for me was Julie Haggerty amd Richard Kind, who played Adam DeVine's parents. Richard Kind always steals the scenes, and it is nice to see Julie Haggerty in comedies. Pierce Brosnan and Ellen Barkin were great together, and there is a cute moment when Adam Devine's character asked if he looked like James Bond. Ellen Barkin says "Yes, you look like the 5th Bond". Pierce Brosnan remarks "That was a good one". Brosnan was the 5th James Bond. I don't know if many people would notice that. 

In the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, 21 of 73 critics' reviews are positive, with an average rating of 4/10. The website's consensus reads: "With a cast this talented, The Out-Laws can't help but provide some laughs -- but they're too few and far between to make up for the movie's derivative, sitcom-worthy setup." Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned the film a score of 36 out of 100, based on 17 critics, indicating "generally unfavorable" reviews.

Like the critic, I wanted more laughs, but it was still a fun movie. Adam DeVine was really great as the bumbling leading man, and I rooted for him to come out on top. The movie is not a classic, but if you just want some laughs then check this one out!


Sunday, May 26, 2024


Television was starting to overtake movies as the favorite medium of 1952. However, movies were still popular. Here are the top stars for 1952...



Wednesday, May 22, 2024


Mickey Rooney's family at war as his last wife accuses his stepson of faking his will - then KILLING him (and in final indignity, star's body will be exhumed) Eighth wife of the star, who died ten years ago alleges her stepson changed Rooney's will then poisoned him

Janice Rooney has filed court documents making the claims - with her other son Chris backing her case

They allege Mark Aber first faked the will - or forced Rooney to sign it - and poisoned him. Mother and son claim Mark had literature about poisoning and autopsies delivered to him They are poised to have body exhumed for new autopsy in hope of proving their case - but estate only amounts to $18,000

Mickey Rooney's stepson has been accused by his own mother - the star's eighth wife - of faking his will then poisoning him. A new lawsuit filed by Jan, the actor's widow, accuses Mark Aber of killing him.  Rooney died in April 2014, after nine decades in the Hollywood spotlight. Despite being at one time cinema's highest-earning star, he left just $18,000. Now a simmering feud between his widow and her stepson, who was Rooney's carer in his final years, has exploded into a court battle. It will also see Rooney's body exhumed for a fresh autopsy, in an attempt to prove Jan Rooney's claim that he was poisoned. Relatives have not stopped fighting since the actor died at the age of 93.

But this is a new low between the two camps - Jan and Chris versus Mark and Charlene, who looked after Rooney in the final few years of his life. Mickey's natural children are also against Mark and Charlene.

As early as 2015, Rooney's daughters Kelly and Kerry claimed that their father had been poisoned and demanded that the body should be exhumed for an autopsy.

As Rooney lay in his coffin, Kelly even clipped several strands of hair from her father's corpse, believing they would be the key forensic proof that will confirm he was poisoned, but she hasn't been able to afford for it to be examined. Nor had they the cash to hire an attorney to take on the case against the will.

A family source revealed Chris Aber and mom Jan believe Rooney was poisoned by Mark, who even had literature about how to poison someone and information on autopsies delivered in the post. Claims over the will lie at the heart of the dispute...

Sunday, May 19, 2024


Here is another guest review from the late Bruce Krogan. This time around he reviews a movie thar he absoluted hated. I have to admit, I have never seen it...

David Niven's career hit rock bottom when he signed on to do The Statue. For a man whose name on the screen stood for charm and sophistication what was Niven thinking when he signed for this?

Niven plays a Nobel Prize winner whose wife Virna Lisi is a sculptress and has done a larger than life statue of him. However she's given him some enhanced privates obviously inspired elsewhere and Niven spends the whole film looking for the inspiration.

The premise is also similar to Rouben Mamoulian's 'The Song of Songs' (1933). But the scandalous sculpture in that little gem was modelled by Marlene Dietrich and that film was a work of pre-code sauciness whereas this is just another garrulous Italian sex comedy which aimlessly wanders about Europe while cameraman Piero Portalupi zooms back & forth between the cast and composer Riz Ortolani potters about on the soundtrack.

David Niven has uplifted more films than any other actor by dint of his personality. But this one is just too heavy a lift. It's got all the element of a stag film without the prurient interest that would make one watch.

God only knows what Niven was thinking. The seventies was not a good decade for comedies.Censorship had been relaxed and film makers were determined to make up for lost time.As a result a lot of distinguished actors participated in films they wouldn't ever want to watch.The only waI to describe this is puerile rubbish...


Wednesday, May 15, 2024


 There has been people throughout history who simply have lied and pretended to be someone they are not. People saying they were in the Twin Towers on September 11th. People have lied about achievements and military service. It has recently been uncovered that a man in California has been posing as a relative of Bing Crosby even!  

As a Bing Crosby fan and writer, I have come in touch with some of the wonderful people in Bing's family. I have had the pleasure to correspond with his nephew Howard Crosby (Ted's song) and his grandson Phil Crosby Jr. Off and on through the years though I have crossed paths with someone claiming to be related to Bing. His stage name is Johnny Holiday and "performs" the old standards and claims to be the great nephew of Bing Crosby, but he has not relation to Bing. Johnny Holiday (aka Scott Ables) claims to be the grandson of Bing's sister Mary. However, no one in the Crosby family has ever met him!

Howard Crosby, genuine nephew of Bing Crosby on Mary Rose, sister of Bing Crosby and supposed grandmother of Scott Ables/Johnny Holiday:

“Aunt Mary Rose had two children, cousin Carolyn who is 89 and lives in Las Vegas, and her son Bill Miller who died many years ago. Carolyn had 6 children, the Quinns, 5 of whom are still with us. I know them all...”

“This guy is NOT one of our relations, that's for sure!”

Furthermore, Johnny Holiday claims to have gotten his start on The Lawrence Welk Show, but I contacted someone I know in the Lawrence Welk organization, and they have no record of him. There are no pictures of Scott with his world-famous great uncle Bing, and when he presented a picture to the woman who woman who produced a channel spot on Cicada club (where he performs) of supposedly himself with Bing. It was actually a picture of Harry Crosby with his father Bing.

Reportedly Kathryn Crosby, the widow of Bing, has sent this Johnny Holiday letters to cease and desist using the Crosby name. There are no records of Johnny Holiday online prior to 2004. If his real name is Scott Ables there is even less online about him than Johnny Holiday.

His last posts were regarding cancer treatment. If he is suffering from cancer, godspeed and no one deserves to have that infliction, but someone close to him that wishes to remain anonymous claims that Scott/Johnny has been "suffering" from cancer for years. The source claims people feel bad for him, and think he is delusional. Whether he is delusional or just trying to make a buck, I do think the truth needs to come out. There are talented people in the Crosby family that are trying to keep the memory of Bing alive, and while Johnny Holiday is saying good things about Bing, he is also spreading lies that he is part of the Crosby family.

I have reached out to Scott Ables/Johnny Holiday for comments and/or his side of the story, but I have not heard back from him. If anyone knows the truth of how Scott Ables came to be called Johnny Holiday, please reach out to me...

Sunday, May 12, 2024


Katharine Houghton Hepburn was born on May 12, 1907, in Hartford, Connecticut, the second of six children. Her parents were Thomas Norval Hepburn (1879–1962), a urologist at Hartford Hospital, and Katharine Martha Houghton Hepburn (1878–1951), a feminist campaigner. Both parents fought for social change in the United States: Thomas Hepburn helped establish the New England Social Hygiene Association, which educated the public about venereal disease, while the elder Katharine headed the Connecticut Woman Suffrage Association and later campaigned for birth control with Margaret a child, Hepburn joined her mother on several "Votes For Women" demonstrations.The Hepburn children were raised to exercise freedom of speech and encouraged to think and debate on any topic they wished. Her parents were criticized by the community for their progressive views, which stimulated Hepburn to fight against barriers she encountered. Hepburn said she realized from a young age that she was the product of "two very remarkable parents",and credited her "enormously lucky" upbringing with providing the foundation for her success. She remained close with her family throughout her life.

The young Hepburn was a tomboy who liked to call herself Jimmy and cut her hair short. Thomas Hepburn was eager for his children to use their minds and bodies to the limit and taught them to swim, run, dive, ride, wrestle, and play golf and tennis. Golf became a passion of Hepburn's; she took daily lessons and became very adept, reaching the semi-final of the Connecticut Young Women's Golf Championship. She loved swimming in Long Island Sound, and took ice-cold baths every morning in the belief that "the bitterer the medicine, the better it was for you". Hepburn was a fan of films from a young age and went to see one every Saturday night. She would put on plays and perform for her neighbors with friends and siblings for 50 cents a ticket to raise money for the Navajo people.

In 1928, Katharine traveled to Boston to get her first job the stage. She was criticized for her shrill voice, but she kept going. She went to New York City to study with a voice tutor. She stayed in New York and made her broadway debut on November 12, 1928 in a play called These Days. In a couple years, Hepburn started to get positive reviews, and a scouting agent from Hollywood discovered her. She left for Hollywood in July of 1932, and the rest is history...

Thursday, May 9, 2024


Shelley Duvall vanished From Hollywood. She's been here the whole time. After two decades, the actress known for her roles in era defining films like “The Shining” and “Nashville” has returned to acting. But what happened to her? Shelley Duvall, who was once a fixture in Hollywood, can be found these days driving around Texas in her Toyota 4Runner.Credit.

Because of health issues, including diabetes and an injured foot that has greatly impacted her mobility (“My left one, like that Daniel Day-Lewis movie,” she joked), Ms. Duvall often stays in her 4Runner, some days driving to local nature spots, catching up with people in town and visiting drive-throughs. The driver’s seat is the only open space, as the interior is cluttered with takeout cartons and empty coffee cups. Ms. Duvall has not appeared in a movie since 2002, but she is making a comeback with a film scheduled to be released this spring.

For more than two decades, Ms. Duvall’s career was at a standstill. Her last film role had come in 2002’s “Manna From Heaven,” after which she retired for reasons that have remained a mystery from a varied and, by most counts, successful career as both an actor and producer. Among the most common questions that show up when you search her name these days: What happened to Shelley Duvall? and Why did Shelley Duvall disappear?

It intrigues Shelley Duvall as well.

“I was a star; I had leading roles,” she said, solemnly shaking her head. She had parked in the town square for a takeout lunch — chicken salad, quiche and sweetened iced coffee, finished off with a drag of a Parliament. She lowered her voice. “People think it’s just aging, but it’s not. It’s violence.”

“How would you feel if people were really nice, and then, suddenly, on a dime” — she snapped her fingers — “they turn on you? You would never believe it unless it happens to you. That’s why you get hurt, because you can’t really believe it’s true.”

“Everyone’s always interested in downfall stories,” said Mr. Gilroy, 76, her partner of more than 30 years, who helps her get in and out of her car and sometimes has to plead with her to come back into the house. His voice bore a tone of weariness in discussing the speculation and gossip that still surrounds Ms. Duvall, focusing not only on her mental health, but also her body.

“It’s all over the internet: ‘Look at her now’ and ‘You won’t believe what she looks like now.’ Every celebrity gets that treatment.”

He has reason to feel weary, of course: In 2016, Ms. Duvall was a guest on the daytime talk show “Dr. Phil,” with the rare television appearance proving to be personally disastrous. Still controversial eight years later, the episode, filmed at the local Best Western without Mr. Gilroy’s knowledge — “I found out days later from people in town that it had happened,” Mr. Gilroy said — showed Ms. Duvall in a state of distress.

“I’m very sick. I need help,” Ms. Duvall told Dr. Phil in one clip. He responded: “Well, that’s why I’m here.”

The episode was titled “A Hollywood Star’s Descent Into Mental Illness: Saving The Shining’s Shelley Duvall.” Wide-eyed, Ms. Duvall went on to utter a slew of bizarre statements, such as claiming to be receiving messages from a “shapeshifting” Robin Williams, who had died two years before, and talking about malevolent forces who were out to do her harm. While the show’s stated aim was one of empowerment and destigmatizing mental illness, many, including Stanley Kubrick’s daughter Vivian, publicly criticized the show for being exploitative and sensationalist.

Although the episode never aired in full, the damage was done. It led to questions regarding her mental state, and she withdrew further into herself.

"It did nothing for her,” said Mr. Gilroy, of the show. “It just put her on the map as an oddity.”
‘The Female Buster Keaton’

While these days it is rare for actresses to show their age on or off screen, Ms. Duvall has aged naturally. With her fine gray hair coaxed into three bright scrunchies on top of her head, and, in a faded pink tracksuit, the Ms. Duvall of today cuts a strikingly different figure to the waif who bewitched filmgoers throughout the ’70s and ’80s.

But her smile is still expressive and kind, her wispy eyebrows often arching to emphasize certain points, to make the listener laugh and win them over. She has an almost cartoonish physicality, with doleful eyes and a goofy humor. This was the woman who once dated Paul Simon and Ringo Starr and worked with some of the era’s most famous directors: Robert Altman, Terry Gilliam and Mr. Kubrick, among them. Her sharp fashion sense — miniskirts, winklepickers, spidery eyelashes — earned her the nickname “Texas Twiggy.”

What made her so captivating then (the film critic Pauline Kael called her the “female Buster Keaton”) still exists: a raw honesty, an intuitive quality and a winsome Texas drawl.

Her disappearance wasn’t, as it had been rumored, born of a protracted breakdown caused years before by her treatment on the set of “The Shining.” In fact, she continues to have only good things to say about that intense yearlong shoot in London and her admiration for Mr. Kubrick. Instead, the pause may be more accurately, though not definitively, attributed to the emotional impact of two events: the 1994 Northridge earthquake, which damaged her Los Angeles home, and the stressful toll of one of her brothers falling ill, which prompted her return to her native Texas three decades ago.

It could also equally be attributed to the curse of fame: It isn’t enough to be famous; one must continuously stoke the fire. Leave it for too long, especially if you begin to “age out” as a woman in the industry, and a career will wane.

After more than two decades, Ms. Duvall is set to make a return to movies this spring in “The Forest Hills.”

Ms. Duvall plays Mama, the mother of Rico (Chiko Mendez), a man who, according to the film’s logline, is “tormented by nightmarish visions after enduring head trauma.” The film also features Edward Furlong (“Terminator 2”), another actor who has spent a long time away from the spotlight.

Taking her restricted mobility into consideration, the crew traveled to Texas from their main location in upstate New York on three occasions, so that Ms. Duvall could perform her scenes from home. There was a lot of technical problem-solving. For instance, her wheelchair, which Ms. Duvall uses when she isn’t in the car, became part of the story. When asked how she came to be involved in the project, Ms. Duvall shrugged: “I wanted to act again. And then this guy kept calling, and so I wound up doing it.”

If the crew had any qualms working with Ms. Duvall, they were immediately soothed. “She was able to bring her acting abilities to the table and deliver her lines and bring the character of Mama to life,” the director Scott Goldberg, for whom this will be his third feature, said on a recent phone call. “She was one hundred percent a natural. It was as if time never passed.”

Ms. Duvall mused: “If you ever do a horror film, other horror films are going to come to you, no matter what you do.”

“It was great, all those years in L.A., really terrific,” said Mr. Gilroy. “And when we moved, after the earthquake, it was terrific in Texas. Things went downhill when she started becoming afraid of things, maybe didn’t want to work. It’s really hard to pin it on any one thing.”

Ms. Duvall, once praised for her great imagination, was now being haunted by it. “She became paranoid and just kind of delusional, thinking she was being attacked,” said Mr. Gilroy. “She tried to make calls to the F.B.I., and asked our neighbor to protect us.”

Pets have always been a big part of Ms. Duvall’s life and she currently has three parrots, a few cats and a geriatric mutt called Puppy. Passing by a field of thin-looking donkeys on the way home, Ms. Duvall often stops to feed them a couple of slices of sandwich bread through the wire fence. Her innate connection to the natural world lends to a sense of wonderment.

Shelly Duvall is very much alive and ready to show the world that she has a lot more magic to give...