The Guns of Navarone

I was surprised that the sky cleared up in the afternoon.  I sat in front of the office computer and wondered if I could make a 3D printing figurine of myself.  I also thought about turning myself into a cartoon character for a short film.  In it, I innocently go out to see a movie and end up destroying the world.  I gave my lecture and headed home.  I saw a Big Bang Theory episode that involved a Planet of the Apes marathon.  I watched “The Guns of Navarone,” which was one of those impossible mission stories set in World War II.  Gregory Peck and others thought of it as an antiwar movie, although I don’t know what the audience thought.  One of the early scenes showed a German boat stopping the crew.  The encounter was something like what happened in “Apocalypse Now.”  The cliff looked impossible to climb, and I didn’t see how all the men could go up with the rope and deal with the wet surface.  Everyone except for James Darren looked too old for this task.  Well, Anthony Quayle didn’t get through that part unscathed.  It also seemed that with all the Germans in the world pursuing them, they would have been stopped rather quickly.  You’d think that the bombs and machine guns would have been deadly.  Having stars like Anthony Quinn and David Niven, along with Gregory Peck, made a difference in lifting this film above the ordinary.  The main characters make a strong impression, whereas the women and the Nazis are anonymous.  I don’t know if they should have killed that first guard, which it alerted the Germans to their presence.  They should have suspected a traitor in their midst perhaps around the time that they were spotted at the wedding.  Darren has a scene in which he sings.  As with The Magnificent Seven, some of these heroes are not going to survive.  Peck was supposed to be coldblooded in his tactics, but by today’s standards he was practically a pussycat.  There was some philosophy about the meaningless of war with everyone being used like pawns, although I would say that it wasn’t like seeing “The Thin Red Line” again.  The explosion at the end looked like it was enough to destroy the entire village, with Quayle and the married couple included.  It looked an old time special effects sequence.  I still like this movie, although I don’t know if it really deserved a Best Picture Oscar nomination.  I never saw “Force 10 From Navarone,” although I heard that it was horrible.  I think I would have liked “The Guns of Navarone” on the late show during the seventies.  The DVD edition had a second disc which had special features, none of which I saw.  The movie itself was enough for me.  Some of the people who died on March 23 include Peter Lorre (1964), Edwin O’Connor (1968), Giulietta Masina (1994), Elizabeth Taylor (2011), Joe Garagiola (2016), and Ken Howard (2016).  Today is a birthday for Keri Russell (41) and Chaka Khan (64).  According to the Brandon Brooks Rewind radio segment for March 23, “Truth or Consequences” made its debut on NBC radio in 1940.  In 1973, New York judge Ira Fieldsteel ruled that John Lennon had to leave the United States within 60 days.  In 1985, John Fogerty reached Number One on the album chart with “Centerfield.”  In 1999, Ricky Martin’s single “Livin’ la Vida Loca” was released.  In 2011, Elizabeth Taylor died of congestive heart failure at age 79 at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

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