Hail, Caesar!

I had taken the day off from work, so I slept a bit late. I thought back on the Super Bowl and had doubts that I could make it to Houston next year. I watched some television before going out to the office to finish up some writing. I watched the last Supergirl episode and then listened to the Robert Hilburn Rock ‘n’ Roll Times program on KCSN that I had missed because I was at the Super Bowl. The songs were by people who were born in February: Johnny Cash, Axl Rose, Peter Gabriel, Carole King, and Kurt Cobain. I went grocery shopping and then went out to the bus stop to get to Emeryville. I bought the CDs of Florence + the Machine and Kendrick Lamarr that were on sale at Target, and then at Barnes and Noble I bought the Rolling Stone magazine issues about David Bowie and The Nineties. I took the bus over to the Grand Lake Theatre to see “Hail, Caesar!” It was the latest movie by the Coen brothers, and it was about Hollywood, so it made me think of “Barton Fink.” Josh Brolin was Eddie Mannix, a man who deals with the movie stars at Capitol Pictures and protects them from bad stories that might be written about them in the papers. George Clooney is Baird Whitlock, who has disappeared. Scarlett Johansson is DeAnna Moran, who has a problem involving a child. Tilda Swinton plays two different writers, Thora Thatcher and Thessaly Thatcher. Frances McDormand is a film editor who should not be wearing a scarf. Channing Tatum is Burt Gurney, an actor playing a singing and dancing sailor like Gene Kelly or Frank Sinatra. Jonah Hill is the professional person Joseph Silverman. The audience kept laughing at the little jokes in the movie, although none of them was really hilarious. I was rather surprised that I liked watching Channing Tatum dancing around in his movie. I thought that some bits were amusing. Josh Brolin’s appearance reminded me of his role in “Inherent Vice,” which was different but made me think that he was repeating himself, anyway. I thought that Scarlett Johansson didn’t do a very good job with her acting. In fact, I have to question her talent completely. She reminded me of both Esther Williams and Lina Lamont in “Singin’ in the Rain.” I don’t know why there was this political part to this story. I think I saw it covered in a better way with “Trumbo.” I don’t think the public really wanted to see a movie about old time movie stars and their problems. This movie got some positive reviews, but the general public seemed to dislike it. They probably didn’t like how the Josh Brolin character was at the center of everything, instead of George Clooney. Also, I’m not sure that they cared for a movie that was set in the 1950s, which is ancient in the eyes of young people going to the movies today. I think people didn’t like what happened with the George Clooney character. I thought the movie had good qualities, and I wouldn’t mind seeing it again on Friday, and I think I’d rather see it again than something like “No Country for Old Men.” This is the type of movie that is released in February and is forgotten quickly. I think this movie might gain a following in the years to come. As I was leaving the theatre, I realized that this was the first time in several weeks that the Star Wars movie wasn’t being shown there. I thought back to my childhood, when hit movies like “American Graffiti” would spend months in the theatres. Now you have one of the blockbusters of all time leaving the theatres after a month and a half. I took the buses back home and sat down in front of the television to watch the latest Supergirl episode. I had a melancholy feeling seeing the Super Bowl pass, along with the togetherness I felt with my friend and the other fans. I wasn’t sure I used my day off from work very well. I didn’t have the energy to watch a video, or read my book, or stay up to watch the Johnny Carson show with Charles Grodin. I heard the news that a man was struck by an Amtrak train in Berkeley. Some of the people who died on February 9 include Sophie Tucker (1966), Gabby Hayes (1969), Bill Haley (1981), David Wayne (1995), and Ian Richardson (2007). Today is a birthday for Judith Light (67), Mia Farrow (71), Alice Walker (72), Joe Pesci (73), and Carole King (74). According to the Brandon Brooks Rewind radio segment for February 9, Barry White was Number One on the singles chart with “Love’s Theme” in 1974. In 1981, Bill Haley died of a heart attack at age 55. In 1991, Tim Meadows and Adam Sandler made their first appearances on Saturday Night Live.

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