Criticism is relative. Depending on whose mouth it comes from and the tone of what is being said, it can either be helpful or hurtful.
As an example, good criticism (otherwise known as constructive criticism) can help us grow. I’ve been a member of a writing group since 2015. The purpose of attendance is not be cruel, but to improve our writing skills. An example of bad criticism is the shit that television personality Piers Morgan has heaped on Megan Markle. After the interview with Markle and Prince Harry aired on Sunday, Morgan continued to dump on her. When he was called out for his comments on air, he took an adult temper tantrum, stormed off stage, and promptly quit his job.
“I think people forget, he’s in a position because they pay him for his opinion. He’s a royalist, and there’s nothing wrong with that. The generation he was born into, we were all taught to be royalists. We were all taught at school…You fight for your Queen and your country.”
Loyalty to one’s home country is one thing. However, when someone like Morgan ( i.e. a while male in a position of power) uses his platform to openly and constantly denounce a woman (especially a woman of color), that is a bridge too far.
I’m going to end this post with a tweet from Bette Midler, but she is awesome.
When one is President, one has many issues on their plate to deal with. In an ideal world, the President or the leader of any country is focused on their job. But in America in 2019, our President is not focused on running the country. He prefers to feud with those who disagree with him on social media.
The newest name on the list of persons of whom he is feuding with is Bette Midler. Her response to his tweet (which I will not repeat on this blog) is spot on.
“I want to thank everyone who came to my defense last night during my personal Battle of the Bulge with he who must not be named. Your wit and good nature really lifted my spirits; as a newly washed up psycho, I am very grateful for your thoughts and prayers.”
Two things bother me about this “feud”. First of all, he was in Europe to commemorate the 75th anniversary of D-Day. One would hope that maturity and respect would be the feelings of the day, to remember the men who gave their lives for our freedom. But then again, you know who is not exactly known for either being respectful or mature.
Second of all, he is President of the United States. He should be concerned about doing the job that we, the voters hired him to do. He should not be concerned with feuding with others via social media. But after two and a half years in office, I expect nothing less.
The not so honorable list of prominent men accused of sexual assaulting and/or sexually harassing their female colleagues has grown to include two more: Garrison Keillor and Geraldo Rivera.
Garrison Keillor is the founder of A Prairie Home Companion. Broadcasting since 1974, the show has become a staple of public radio. After it was discovered that Keillor crossed the line with a colleague, he was fired and A Prairie Home Companion was removed from the channel’s lineup.
Geraldo Rivera has been a journalist and talk show host for many years. Recently Bette Midler accused him of sexual misconduct in the 1970’s.
I get it that firing these men, especially at this point in time is necessary. A message needs to be sent that such actions are not ok and there will be consequences for those who do act in such a manner. But at some point, the firing is going to be counterproductive. I just feel like for now, there is no choice but to fire these men. If they are not fired, the problem will continue and it simply can’t.
Divorce is the last thing on many couple’s minds as they repeat their wedding vows. But sometimes divorce is for the best.
In the 1997 movie, That Old Feeling, Lilly (Bette Midler) and Dan (Dennis Farina) have been passionately divorced for years. Nothing makes their skin crawl more than to be around each other. Their daughter, Molly (Paula Marshall) is getting married and Lilly and Dan have to find a way at least pretend to be civil for their daughter’s sake. What once was hate turns back in lust between Dan and Lilly. Molly freaks out and hires a paparazzi (Danny Nucci) to find her parents.
This movie is interesting. The narrative goes beyond the standard romantic comedy. Still it is a little predictable, even for a genre built on predictability. Do I recommend it? Maybe.
Actors try to stay away from being type cast in certain types of characters. Bette Midler has played many female character that are brash, bossy and outspoken. That is perfectly fine with me.
In The First Wives Club (1996), she was part of a trio of middle aged women that included Goldie Hawn and Diane Keaton. They were best friends in college, but life, as it does, took them in different directions. Then a friend commits suicide when her husband left her for a younger woman. Brought together by the fact that all three of their husbands have dumped them for younger wives, they want one thing: revenge.
I am also including the video for the classic Lesley Gore song “You Don’t Own Me” because it is just so cool and is a perfect addition to this movie.
The story of the younger woman and the older man has been told time and again throughout history. But we rarely hear of the older woman who was with the man during their youth and has recently been shoved aside for a younger and prettier model. It is even rarer for that woman to become powerful in her own right and stand on her own two feet.
In Then She Found Me (2007) April Epner (Helen Hunt) is not having an easy life. Her husband (Matthew Broderick) has just left her as soon as she finds out that they are expecting. Her adopted mother Trudy (Lynn Cohen), is disappointed that April has not achieved more in life. Add in a flirtation with Frank (Colin Firth), who is the father of one of April’s students and Bernice (Bette Midler), the birth mother that suddenly returns to her life.
What I like about this movie that it feels real. The reality is that sometimes the floor falls down on us and everything comes down with the floor. April’s journey is inspiring and a case of art imitating life.
Sometimes, the best stories come out of the greatest tragedies. World War II is no exception.
In the early 1990’s, two movies exemplified this idea.
In For The Boys (1991), Dixie Leonard (Bette Midler) and Eddie Sparks (James Caan) are entertaining the boys overseas during World War II. After the war, they become America’s favorite on screen couple, until the Red Scare forces them apart.
I like this movie. World War II movies usually focus on the men fighting, they seldom focus on the entertainers who put their lives on the line to entertain the troops.
Come See the Paradise (1990) is about the dark side of America during World War II. In 1936 Jack McGurn (Dennis Quaid), takes a job in a movie theater in Los Angeles neighborhood of Little Tokyo. He falls in love with Lily (Tamlyn Tomita), who is the boss’s daughter. Lily’s father does not approve of the relationship and they must escape to Seattle. But then war breaks out and Lily and their daughter are forced into the concentration camps with the rest of the Japanese American citizens.
I also like this movie. The subject of the forced internment of the Japanese-American population during World War II seems to be over looked most of the time. This movie is absolutely beautiful and heartbreaking at the same time.
The term chick flick is associated with a certain type of film. Sometimes these films may require it’s audience to have a Kleenex nearby. This, gentle readers, is the subject of this Throwback Thursday Post.
CC Bloom (Bette Midler), an entertainer and Hilary Whitney Essex (Barbara Hershey), the daughter of a San Fransisco WASP family, meet as children in Atlantic City. Keeping in touch through letters, they reunite as adults when Hilary moves in with CC. While they have ups and downs in their relationship, including falling for the same man, their relationship endures to the very end.
This movie requires a box of Kleenex. I love that the core of this movie is the enduring friendship between CC and Hilary. It’s just one of those movies that is so life affirming and reminds it’s audience about the power of friendship.
Fate sometimes works in strange ways. Nicky Ferrante (Cary Grant) and Terry McKay (Deborah Kerr) meet on a cruise ship and start to fall for each other. The only hitch is that they are engaged to other people. They agree to reunite in six months at the top of the Empire State Building. But when Terry does not appear at the agreed upon date, Nicky is concerned that she has either married or forgotten him.
There is something about a movie from your childhood that no matter how old one gets, that movie brings you back to that point in your life.
With Halloween just around the corner, anything relating to witches is becoming popular, as it does every fall.
In 1993, Disney added to the lore of witches with Hocus Pocus.
In 1693 Salem Massachusetts, Winifred, Mary and Sarah Sanderson (Bette Midler, Kathy Najimy and Sarah Jessica Parker) are accused using dark magic and executed. The warn that they will return. Three hundred years later, Max (Omri Katz), a recent west coast transplant who is skeptical of the myth of the Sanderson sisters, is stupid enough to bring the witches back to life. Now it is up to Max, his sister Dani (Thora Birch), Max’s crush Allison (Vinessa Shaw) and an immortal cat to destroy the witches once and for all.
The child in me has fond memories of this movie. At the end of the day, it’s just an innocuous Disney movie (aren’t they all?) from the early 90’s that is fun to watch. I love the balance of the comedic and villainous elements that come out of three witches, especially Bette Midler.
With Halloween coming up quick, sometimes I don’t want to watch blood and gore. Sometimes I want to watch something that will make me laugh, without keeping me up at night.