Note: Here are six fabulous screen caps from the 1918 film ‘Cupid in Quarantine’, which were sent on to me on Tuesday from Marilyn Ferdinand. The silent, is the subject of this year’s Film Preservation Blogathon, being run at Ferdy-on-Films, This Island Rod and Wonders in the Dark on May 17-17th. The theme of the blogathon is ‘science-fiction.’ hence all those planning to participate are urged to prepare their review son a chosen sci-fi film imminently as the time ticks down to the 13th.
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Rutgers University’s principal saxophonist Eric Lampmann
by Sam Juliano
The lovely spring weather that has graced the Metropolitan area for the last two weeks seems to have finally marked its turf, with winter vanquished after a long and arduous haul. On a personal note this couldn’t be more timely what with the three-day 8th Grade Washington D.C. slated for this coming Wednesday through Friday. I will once again be on that venture, as will me daughter Jillian, whose year this is. With the prohibitive walking involved, I have scheduled a cortisone shot for later today to enable me to proceed in view of my left knee torn miniscus. I will have arthroscopic surgery for that later this month. But I know the drill, as I had it done on the other knee nine years ago. The worst part is actually the one month (three days a week) one-hour therapy sessions.
As we inch closer to two major events here at Wonders in the Dark, I want to offer up reminders to all. The first -as advertised on the side-bar- in the Film Preservation Blogothon, being hosted by Marilyn Ferdinand and Roderick Heath at Ferdy on Films and This Island Rod respectively. For the first time ever, WitD will be joining in as an honored guest with one day serving as the home base, during this honored May 13 through 17 endeavor. All are urged to write a review on a science-fiction film and/or make a modest contribution to the cause. When the blogothon concludes we will then focus our passions on the Best Films About Childhood Countdown, which will commence with ballot submissions by all participants, starting at May 18th. The actual countdown (Top 60) will begin on June 1st, after the ballots are received and tabulated by Angelo A. D’Arminio Jr. during that two week window.
Lucille and I had a lively week for sure, taking in two marvelous musical venues on the college and high school level, and then following that up with a viewing of a new release and two unseen Tribeca films, which rolled over to the nearby up-and-coming Montclair Film Festival, where we will be tonight and tomorrow night as well. At Rutgers University in New Brunswick on Saturday night we listened to the gifted young Eric Lampmann (Lucille’s sister’s youngest son) dazzle his audience with a saxophone and viola (piano accompaniment) recital that covered some famed classical composers including Bach. This young man has quite a musical career ahead of him, this much is certain. Meanwhile, earlier in the week on Thursday we attended the Paramus High School ‘Spring Concert’ to witness another young man with talent–the son of Lucille’s graduate school buddy Frank LaRose (Joshua) exercise his vocal talent with a splendid rendition of “La Donna e Mobile” from Verdi’s Rigoletto. Some other high school seniors did a fine job, as did the jazz ensemble. To boot on Sunday afternoon we attended a rousing First Holy Communion gala for my brother’s daughter Gianna at the Fiesta Restaurant in Wood-Ridge, New Jersey. Continue Reading »
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by Sam Juliano
Eleven days of glorious Tribeca madness, and the 2015 installment of this exceedingly popular Big Apple venue has concluded. Lucille and I did have a whale of a time, even though our stamina took a major hit. We watched a total of thirty-six (36) feature length films with this final weekend of five-six-five proving the most frantic sequence of all. But in reality the festival is not quite over, when you consider that four or five of the Tribeca films I had wanted to see but couldn’t quite work them into an already wall to wall schedule engineered around my full time teaching position, are now playing at the nearby Montclair Film Festival that is set to launch this coming Friday. I have every intention of seeing the likes of Jackrabbit, Slow West, Dream/Killer, (T) error, and perhaps The Armour of Light and Kurt Cobain: the Montage of Heck over the first several days of the festival. I will then be able to complete my “Best Films of Tribeca” post by next Monday. With a doctor’s confirmation that I have a torn miniscus in my left knee, I know now the source of all my discomfort and pain over the last few months. This issue will require orthroscopic surgery, but not until sometime in mid-May,m as I have a three-day Washington D.C. trip with the school set to go on May 6th. I will resquire a shot of cortisone for the trip.
The Tribeca Festival included many highlights, but none more thrilling than meeting and shaking hands with Monty Python icon John Cleese and the rest of the troupe after a screening of The Life of Brian and before the presentation of the splendid documentary Monty Python: The Meaning of Live. To futher the celebrity glee, we sat on the next table to the troupe at a Chealsea Restaurant. This year’s Festival was a most impressive one artistically, and the star ratings and subsequent ‘Best Of’ post will reflect this happy re-cap.
The Festival for the most part was staged in three places: the sprawling Regal Cinemas near the World Trade Center, the Bow-Tie Cinemas on 23rd Street, and the SVA Theatre down the block from the Bow-Tie. For a number of reasons the 23rd Street location were vastly preferred, but still we took in several vital films at the Regal, which does boast excellent screens and seating. Continue Reading »
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