Archive for August 2022

STREAMING REVIEWS AUGUST 2022 PART 7   Leave a comment


1) “Dominick Dunne: After The Party”–Prime–Documentary–1 hour & 25 minutes–for a man who has seen, done, witnessed and lived through a lot he is a dull man–sadly his daughter was murdered which affected his life and writing–not worth watching.

2) “The Rehearsal”–HBO Max–comedy series–season 1–6 episodes–3 hours & 14 minutes–Synopsis: the lengths one man will go through to reduce the uncertainties of every day life–I’ve done this method over 50 years using, “If I do this what is the worst that can happen?”–the show is getting raves (even from people I admire) and I can’t figure out why.

3) “Nightmare Alley”–HBO Max–Movie–2 hours & 30 minutes–Synopsis: a manipulative carnie and a devious shrink join forces–excellent performances by Toni Collette, Cate Blanchett and Bradley Cooper–a remake of a 1940s film with Tyrone Power–movie runs 40 minutes longer than the original and is good but was a remake really necessary?

4) “Father of the Bride”–HBO Max–Movie–1 hour & 58 minutes–Synopsis: you are invited to the love, food, music and the fun of a modern rom/com update of the timeless classic that shows the surprising ways the heart can adapt in the name of love from a Latin point of view–every generation needs a “Father of the Bride”–this has Andy Garcia as the father and Adria Arjona as the bride–Garcia (is this sacrilege?) is better than Spencer Tracy was in the original while Liz Taylor is ‘more’ everything than Arjona–Taylor was absolutely gorgeous in this–not a ‘must see’ but enjoyable.

5) “Purple Hearts”–Netflix–movie–2 hours & 2 minutes–Synopsis: an inspiring actress/ musician agrees to a marriage of convenience with a soon to be deployed Marine but a tragedy soon turns their fake romance all too real–if you don’t know how this movie plays out and will end after the first 15 minutes you haven’t seen enough movies–major problem is the soundtrack is ‘off’ and lips and words don’t match–it’s a Hollywood soap opera, tearjerker and romance all in one–a love story full and cliche and trashy plus there isn’t that major chemistry between the leads BUT I loved it–hey, I’m a sucker for romance!!

Posted August 29, 2022 by greatmartin in ENTERTAINMENT, Streaming

SUMMER IN FORT LAUDERDALE AUGUST 2022   Leave a comment

It is summertime in Fort Lauderdale–one of the ways to tell is just look at Bette Davis, our weather forecaster(#2), pointing to the next 7 days–actually it is a little cooler as our highs for the past 4 weeks has been close to 93 degrees making the ‘feel like’ temps near or above 100 degrees

One of the guys (3) who have their boat docked at Gateway enjoying his day on the water!

All my pepper plants are showing the green and red peppers–I am getting a good crop this year!

Okay, get used to it–the calendar tells it all and you will be hearing the preparations as I go along–right now it looks like I may hold the party at Big Louie’s because 1) I never had a birthday party there 2) it is one of my favorite restaurants and 3) Sergio can put out a new buffet spread plus pizzas and their great garlic rolls. Nothing definite yet as I have a few other restaurants to try out plus new ones open every day!

LIFE IS GOOD!

Posted August 26, 2022 by greatmartin in Uncategorized

STREAMING REVIEWS AUGUST 2022 PART 6   Leave a comment


(Hate to admit it but the best new show I saw this week was on a network channel The CW–“Leonardo”–yes based on the life of Leonardo da Vinci!)

1) “13 Lives”–Prime–movie based on a true story–2 hours & 22 minutes–still being fresh in the mind and knowing how it ends really takes most of the suspense of the film about the young soccer players and their 25 year-old coach trapped in a cave underwater–director Ron Howard makes the stories of the boys and the divers who save them a good movie.

2) “The Sandman”–Netflix–series–season 1–10 episodes–6 hours & 4 minutes–the King of Dreams controls the dreams of everyone on earth and turns into a battle between the King and The Corinthian who uses nightmares to kill people–a lot of special effects but I was bored with the story and quit after the 5th episode!

3) “I Am Michael”–Prime–film based on a true story–1 hour & 41 minutes–Synopsis: Michael Glatze a ‘former’ gay magazine editor became a Christian pastor with a girlfriend–the acting by James Franco in the lead  and the direction and screenplay by Justin Kelly are all flat and makes the story very unconvincing.

4) “I Just Killed My Dad”–Netflix–documentary–limited series–3 episodes–2 hours & 5 minutes–Synopsis: is Anthony Templet a murderer or a victim? That depends on who you ask and in the case of a teen who shot his own father there are no easy answers–found guilty or not what kind of life will he have?–there aren’t many frills added to his story but really too much of a one note feel–one line remains with me–a test juror asks, “Guilty or not? But he did kill someone!”

5) “Trainwreck: Woodstock ’99”–Netflix–documentary–3 episodes–2 hours & 23 minutes–Synopsis: an attempt to revisit the ‘peace and love’ of the original festival in 1969–the title says it all in that the documentary is like watching a train wreck and is a mess!

Posted August 24, 2022 by greatmartin in ENTERTAINMENT, Streaming

BIRDS, TREES, FLOWERS, LIZARDS AND MOTHER NATURE   Leave a comment


I can’t afford to go to the touring Broadway shows, there are very few movies playing on the big screen for me to go and see them and eating is a pleasure that right now the scale says I can’t afford to indulge in so I have one of the greatest pleasures available to me and that is Mother Nature. She puts on a new show every day and I love just walking around and see what she is offering this day!

For instance right outside my living room window is what I call the “Wilma” tree because when hurricane Wilma in 2005 the tree was completely stripped of every branch and leaf. Why the owners of Gateway didn’t cut away what remained I don’t know but I am glad they didn’t! The tree (first picture upper left corner) has not only grown back but is even bigger and better than it was before it now being close to 4 stories tall and spread out between 3 buildings and so far the current owners haven’t trimmed it back in time for the new hurricane season. Looking out my window I saw two new pods (see arrows) have grown on this side.

Talking about hurricanes is spite of the fact this is hurricane AND rainy seasons we haven’t seen much rain yet though there are 3 more months to go. The only reason I know it has rained is seeing the white herons (#2 pictures) strolling around picking at insects and they only visit us after a rainfall which means it is raining late nights, early mornings and by the time I wake up all is dry.

I love walking around the grounds and coming across a scene that lets my imagination roam like when I came across these 3 lizards (#3 pictures)  made up a tale in my head that they just came out of their hiding place and are roaming around for lunch. I have no idea how to tell a male from a female lizard but, hey, it could be a family who have made Gateway Terrace their home because they know no one will bother them!

Walking down to the mailbox I looked up at the tree (#4) in front of building N and thought I saw a green parrot but it really was just a green branch in the center to the right. We used to have wild parrots fly into the trees every day about 5 PM but they haven’t visited for some time now.

With all that there is outside I have the reliable plants right by my computer table off to the right (#5s) and every day they are in bloom! There are the pink Geraniums and the yellow Cuban plant and thought you can’t see it in the middle is the pepper plant and right now it has blooms plus 5 peppers at all stages of growth.

How can anyone be bored when Mother Nature is always putting on a show?!?!?!?

Posted August 22, 2022 by greatmartin in MOTHER NATURE

STREAMING REVIEWS 5 WINNERS AUGUST 2022 PART 5   1 comment


1) “13 the Musical”–Netflix–Movie–1 hour & 34 minutes–from the opening with various scenes of New York to the last musical number this movie about 13 years olds grabbed me–the Bar Mitzvah scene had me in tears though I don’t remember mine–it’s not great–not the best musical ever but the kids were great whether singing and/or dancing–the songs fit in–I never saw or heard about this Broadway musical and I don’t know who the audience this was made for–maybe it was made for an old man who is still a kid but I thoroughly enjoyed it up to and including the last number which is joyful and fun.

2) “Inside the Mind of a Cat”–Netflix–Documentary–1 hour & 7 minutes–the title alone will sell it to the millions of cat lovers but even dog lovers will enjoy how inquisitive, intelligent, social and teachable cats are–does a cat play favorites? Know their name as silly as it may be? Do they love us? There has to be a part 2, if not a lot more chapters, to this fascinating look into our feline friends.

3) “Look Both Ways”–Netflix–Movie–1 hour & 50 minutes–we follow a woman (played by Lili Reinhart) as she follows 2 different paths in life–one as a single mother who is trying to find out how her life works while the other path is about a young artist trying to break into an industry that is very much closed–switching between both lives is done effortlessly and you never get ‘lost’–Lili Reinhart  does a remarkable job playing the same woman living 2 different lives–I found this to be a good and surprising film–highly recommend it.

4) “Belfast”–HBO Max–Northern Ireland Movie–1 hour & 37 minutes–Judi Dench makes a bad film good and a good movie better as she does in this film by Kenneth Branagh looking back at his childhood in Ireland during the Protestants and Catholics ‘wars’–the interaction between Dench and Ciaran Hinds as husband and wife is delightful–they are grandparents everyone wants–Jude Hill as their grandson and for a young lad almost steals the picture from the professional and veteran actors–though it is in black & white (except for some Hollywood film excerpts in color) I wish it had been made in color to show Belfast but then it was a black and white time–an excellent too brief film!

AN ASIDE: I TOOK A MONTH TRIAL OF HBO MAX AND JUST WATCHING “BELFAST” AND “THE LAST MOVIE STARS” MADE IT MORE THAN WORTHWHILE.

5) “The Last Movie Stars”–HBO Max–Documentary–6 episodes–6 hours & 6 minutes–the first time I met Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward was when they were starring in “Baby Wants A Kiss” and I was working at the Ham ‘n Eggs coffee shop–I think it was 1964–yes, his eyes were THAT blue and she was more beautiful in person than on screen and he was a good tipper!–we look at the famous, the beautiful people and we really don’t know them–in this series we get to see a little behind the scenes these two people who we have preconceived ideas about–Paul Newman was better known than Joanne but that is mainly due to the fact she chose to stay home and take care of their kids at a time she should have been making movies–her answer to this gives you great insight to this woman–that plus seeing her reaction to Newman’s line “Why buy hamburger when you have Filet Mignon at home?” is worth seeing this series alone but there is so much more to learn about them–it is sad to hear and see about his dying but watching Woodward in one of her last movies playing  woman with Alzheimer’s knowing that she has been dealing with that illness since 2007 but watching them individually, or as a couple, shows fascinating human beings who brought a lot and did a lot for the public–definitely worth seeing and making you want to watch all their movies!

Posted August 20, 2022 by greatmartin in ENTERTAINMENT, Streaming

“BEAST”–MOVIE THEATRE REVIEW   1 comment


This is a must see movie and a reason to go to a movie theatre to see certain picures. Oh the screenplay, director, actors all do their job and occasionally there is a jump out of your seat scene if you are that kind of moviegoer and some of the African scenery is breathtaking BUT the computer generated animation is breathtaking from scenes of the pride among themselves or two of the lions being affectionate to a man and, yes, a lion attacking a car to get at the humans inside.

The human side of the story–the mother of two daughters have died and the father takes them to the birthplace of their mother and they encounter this lion that wants to kill every human who allowed poachers to kill his pride–is no where as interesting as watching what the lion can do and the human eye can no way see how it is done. Well at least this human’s eye who has 20/20 eyesight couldn’t see how it was done.

As my computer guru always says I googled it but that didn’t help. There is a reason I got a 0 in  technical understanding in my NYU vocational exam 60 years ago and that’s so movies like the “Beast” can have me sit in awe as I watch the effects on a 65 foot wide and and 35 foot high screen.

As addicted as I have become to streaming of TV movies I highly suggest going to see Idris Elba, the other actors and, mostly, the lions on the big screen!

Posted August 19, 2022 by greatmartin in ENTERTAINMENT, FILM REVIEWS

STREAMING REVIEWS AUGUST 2022 PART 4   Leave a comment


1)”Virgin River”–Netflix–Season 4–12 episodes–11 hours & 6 minutes–a nighttime soap opera–this has been a winner since the first episode of season 1–season 4 continues the saga of the leads and those around them–a lot of soap opera but it keeps moving!

2) “End of Sentence”–Prime–Movie–1 hour & 36 minutes–takes place in Ireland–a father and son who have a long broken relationship go on a road trip after the wife/mother dies of cancer–everything is there including good acting, a good story, beautiful Ireland scenery–all that is missing is the big ‘reveal’–it ends on a soft note which made me shrug my shoulders and ask, “What’s that about?”

3) “Any Day Now”–Prime–Movie–1 hour & 38 minutes–based on a true story about a gay couple fighting prejudice when they want to adopt a Down Syndrome teenager–when a mother abandons her teenage son Marco who is a Down Syndrome child. The men are forced to fight a biased legal system to save the life of the child they have come to love as their own. There are two drag numbers done by Alan Cumming that add nothing to the powerful hold this film could exert except maybe the fact that he does drag could be used against him in the legal fight but even worse is the over the title credits song he sings at the end so badly it ruins whatever tenderness and/or prejudice shown is ruined–too much filler to make this a feature film and ruins the story.

4) “King of Stonks”–Netflix–series–6 episodes–German drama/comedy–4 Hours & 37 minutes–Synopsis: Desperate for startup stardom an overly ambitious finance mastermind lies, cheats and schemes his less than authentic company up the ladder to success–I gave up after the second episode which is very rare for me!

5) “This Is Me”–Prime–Documentary–season 1–5 episodes–28 minutes–short segments, 5-6 minutes each, of trans people talking about their experiences as children and adults doing every day things and how they are treated and how people react accepting them or not–definitely a subject I need to learn more about and this adds to my knowledge while being entertaining.

Posted August 16, 2022 by greatmartin in ENTERTAINMENT, Streaming

WHO IS OLD???? NOT ME!!!   1 comment

I keep on hearing 1) Age is only a number and 2) You are only as old as you feel–well, I hate to disagree but here I am going on 22 (Thursday, February 29, 2024) and I feel 86!!

1) It all started getting a biopsy for melanoma and a week later it started bleeding–well, more like spurting blood—for 3 hours until I finally gave up and went to the ER and got 3 stitches. (By the way the biopsies proved to be benign.)

2) This week I got a new light weight computer chair and picked it up on Wednesday to fix a lever and it hit my leg–guess what? It spurted blood!! It is now Sunday and it still hasn’t stopped bleeding though no longer spurting blood. I have it wrapped tightly and it is starting to develop a scab which is a good sign.

#s 3 & 5) I have psoriasis on my head and in my ears plus itch all over the place and when I scratch I sometimes bleed but more often just get black and blue like on the shoulder where I scratched yesterday. The reason for that is I take two blood thinners and also a multi-vitamin which has vitamin E/fish oil. My dermatologist has given me 4 oils & creams to ‘play’ with!

4) Last, but certainly not least, gave me a button to press if I fall so I will get immediate help but that won’t work for me. Last December I ‘fell’ off my recliner (still don’t know how/when) and woke up an hour and a half later with blood all over! I need the button that will alert the people at the other end that I am falling before I fall so now I have to start pricing them.

The next time someone says “Age is mind over matter” or “Live your life, forget your age” remind me to slap them—and this is only halfway through August!

Posted August 14, 2022 by greatmartin in ENTERTAINMENT, Streaming

STREAMING REVIEWS AUGUST 2008 PART 3   Leave a comment


An advanced preview–DON’T MISS “13 THE MUSICAL” ON NETFLIX–I LOVED IT–FUN

1) “As I Am”–Prime–movie–1 hour & 1 minute–synopsis: young man running from the truth of his childhood returns to correct his past–the lead needs acting lessons as do much of the cast–sadly a very poor production.

2) “In The Dark”–Netflix–series–season 1–13 episodes–8 hours–Synopsis: a drinking, sex addicted blind lady, tries to find out who murdered her friend–it was very interesting as was the leading lady but it tried to cover too many angles in playing to everyone–was 2 hours too long and she was too much the victim who was anything but–I enjoyed the first season still I wouldn’t watch anymore seasons/episodes.

3) “Gully”–Prime–movie–1 hour & 24 minutes–Synopsis: 3 boyhood friends surviving Los Angeles’s roughest streets find retribution after one night of partying–I knew in the first 30 minutes this wasn’t for me but I kept on watching hoping it would get better–I expected so much more from the character of Greg, played by Jonathan Majors, to deliver more but the screenplay didn’t give him the material to work with–I must admit the last 10 minutes got to me but not enough to erase the hour and 4 minutes before.

4) “Shania Twain’s Not Just A Girl”–Netflix–documentary–1 hour & 28 minutes–Synopsis: from Nashville newcomer to international icon singer Shania Twain transcends genres across borders amid triumphs and setbacks–when it comes to ‘country’ I am all Dolly with a little Patsy Cline and maybe 1 or 2 others but Shania Twain never meant anything to me and hearing her songs in this documentary didn’t really ring a bell–she is beautiful and radiates stardom, is very talented yet I won’t be listening to her or seeking out her records.

5) “The Most Hated Man On The Internet”–Netflix–documentary–3 parts–2 hours& 42 minutes–Synopsis: a mother, Charlotte Law, goes after a man, Hunter Moore, who started a web site using hacked pictures of innocent people who made these pictures in privacy–he then went further and gloated he was pure evil–it took  years for the mother to get justice for her daughter and others–it was, unnecessarily, 1 hour too long–very repetitious and not all that interesting–left a dirty taste–skip it!

Posted August 13, 2022 by greatmartin in ENTERTAINMENT, Streaming

THE OLD RIVER HOUSE BECOMES THE NEW RIVER HOUSE!   Leave a comment

                                            (Left to right–Michael, Me, Chuck)

Sometime in the 1990s (Chuck doesn’t remember and I am too lazy to go through the diaries of the 1990s) the three of us went to dinner at the Historic Bryan Homes Restaurant–obviously I didn’t have a cell phone or digital camera as there are no food pictures!–and I still have that picture taken that evening—it is on my dresser draw–and I see it every day and smile.

The restaurant has been closed for a few years, which always surprised me, as it is on a beautiful spot along the river so I was glad they are opening again and I hope this time it lasts at least until Chuck gets down here again so we can enjoy it.

Mmmmm–just thought that it might be a great place to celebrate my 22 birthday on Thursday, February 29, 2024

Very surprising that this is the  one of the few old places—over 100 years old that hasn’t been torn down and made into condos!

For the whole story of the River House and the new restaurant:

https://www.sun-sentinel.com/entertainment/restaurants-and-bars/fl-et-new-restaurants-fort-lauderdale-river-house-on-the-river-20220624-hrnutnpa4rd27jb6rr7pfodjq4-story.html

Another version:

https://www.sun-sentinel.com/entertainment/restaurants-and-bars/fl-et-old-riverhouse-jonny-nobones-restaurant-20200821-basd6j5navggddjmodde6dopam-story.html

Posted August 12, 2022 by greatmartin in RESTAURANTS

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