Yeah, so I know I still owe you the whole Sunday (p)review thing, but that's going to take me a while, and it just so happens I'm on jury duty right now. Well, not right now. Today, I'm at work. But that's what's making it more difficult. Because you see, yesterday I was at jury duty, and I just read (and slept) all day. But today, I didn't have to go back to jury duty -- I just have to call and check-in this afternoon. Which means I had to come in to work. Which means I have a ton of crap from yesterday and today to take care of. Plus, I've spent a lot of time at New York Film Festival screenings, and I definitely have something to say about the five films I've seen so far. But for now, here are just a few things I wanted to throw out there:
Have I mentioned that you need to register to vote? I haven't? My bad. Well, overkill or not, register your ass to vote. The New York deadline is THIS FRIDAY. Other states may be sooner (or already past?), and you may have to mail something in even if you can start the process online. So don't keep saying, "I'm gonna do it." Do it now. You can Rock-the-Vote if you like, but just make sure you Declare Yourself because Your Vote Matters!
Speaking of politics, if you've never heard of Tanner '88, you missed out on one of the great mockumentaries of our time. Robert Altman and Garry Trudeau created a fake presidential campaign back in 1988; 11 half-hour episodes following democratic presidential candidate Jack Tanner (Michael Murphy) and company -- including campaign manager T.J. Cavanaugh (Pamela Reed) and his college age daughter (a pre-Sex and the City and tabloid fodder Cynthia Nixon) -- on the campaign trail right up until the democratic convention aired on HBO in relative "real time" 1988. The show mixed fictional events and characters with real politicians much better than K Street ever did. Sundance Channel has been reairing the entire series, and the last two episodes will be repeated tonight at 8 and 8:30 leading up to the brand new Tanner on Tanner. Altman and Trudeau have brought back the entire cast for a new four-episode series, this time focusing on Alex Tanner's (Nixon) attempt to make a documentary film about failed presidential contenders, including her father. The fact that the real Alexandra Kerry (who appears in a Tanner on Tanner episode) and fictional Alexandra Tanner are both aspiring documentary filmmakers is, I'm sure, purely coincidental. Let's just hope Kerry is never making such a doc about her father.
Baseball is over. Yes it is. Shut up. I don't care about no stinking playoffs. My team decided they didn't want to play past Oct. 3, so for the past two weeks, they had obviously chosen to give away games. Like leading 3-0 against their most bitter rivals and then losing in the bottom of the 9th due to the utter lack of a bullpen. My team (I really can't even speak the name) didn't get beat; they beat themselves with bad relief pitching and horrible fielding errors, and that just pisses me off. So, while I know this will make me some enemies among friends (HA! like any of my friends read this blog!), go Red Sox and Cardinals. St. Louis, you better sweep the floor with those evil SoCal smurfs. And Boston, I just want to hear you stop whining already. I've got me some near Buckner moments too, and while 1918 is a long time ago, it's been 50 years since my team has one (third longest to you and the Cubs), and since none of us are that old anyway, we're all in the same boat. Do your business and stop bitching.
Not like you could forget because it's on every single channel (except for Fox with baseball (natch) and The WB: woo hoo One Tree Hill -- the Veeps will be more entertaining although, hard as it is to believe, less realistic), but the Vice Presidential debate is on tonight, and here's hoping Mr. Edwards can help get Mr. Cheney's approval numbers down below 10%. Obviously, the Veep-chats don't have too much of an effect on the election, otherwise nobody would have ever uttered the words "Vice President Quayle," but every bit counts.
After you're done with the Veeps, check out Channel 13 (PBS) at midnight tonight. They're replaying last night's episode of American Experience focusing on the person who many people consider the greatest would-be President who never had the chance, Robert Kennedy.
Val Kilmer is such a great Moses that a few negative reviews have caused the producers to cancel some performances of the new musical The Ten Commandments in an attempt to "retool" the show. This is always a good sign, and should insure a long and prosperous run in LA and on Broadway, for decades ... oh to hell with it. I can't do it with a straight face. Like anyone is shocked that this show is a turd.
Turner Classic Movies begins its celebration of movie musicals tonight with its month long series "Mad About Musicals" airing every Tuesday and Wednesday night in October. The definite pick-of-the-night for me would be the ultimate "backstage musical," 42nd Street. While much of it seems quaint and dated, this 1933 film is still enormously entertaining, as well as being fascinating to watch and compare to all the movie and stage musicals which have come in its wake. Of course, the stage revival is still playing on Broadway through the end of the year, but this film is the original. Give it a try, tonight at 9:45 PM. You also might want to check out Flying Down to Rio right after 42nd Street which features the first pairing (although they're not the film's stars) of the great Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers.
Fox's The Next Great Champ has, thankfully, been knocked out of major network primetime competition. (Sorry, couldn't resist.) The network has cancelled this awful reality show and will move the remaining episodes to the regional channels of Fox Sports Net, which is where it belongs.
And finally, did I remind you to register to vote? No? Are you sure? Well why haven't you don it yet. I'll wait.
OK, so not "really" brief. Whatever.