by Sam Juliano
Christmas Day is practically upon us, and one must wonder how the time has flown by to bring it up so quickly. With the holiday comes a well-earned break for many, and for others the chance to catch up on lost-delayed projects. Right. We’ll be right where we were before the break when the off time expires. That’s the way it always was and that’s the way it always will be. In any case it is always an ideal time to spend in theaters, concert halls, museums or libraries, and of course to put together your own year-end lists
In any event, par for the course December for me always involves some kind of nagging malady. No sooner did the ear infection subside, than my issues with gastritis, hiatal hernia and gerd emerge again. This is a condition that affects just about every adult member of my family in force, so I will have to again get some doctor’s attention this week.
I want to extend the heartiest congratulations to our good friend Paul Bartell (John Grant) for the publication of his new short story collection “Tell No Lies” on Alchemy Press:
Happy Holidays are extended to all our good friends and readers. Let’s toast to the best year ever in 2015.
This past week Lucille and I saw three films in theaters:
Wild **** (Sunday night) Starplex
Inherent Vice * (Friday night) Angelika
The Hobbit 3 **** (Saturday) **** Starplex
THE HOBBIT: THE BATTLE OF THE FIVE ARMIES provides a satisfactory conclusion to Middle Earth adventure, with some rousing combat sequences and a potent emotional underpinning. May well be the best of the three installments, though not on the level of the “Lord of the Rings” Trilogy.
WILD features Reese Witherspoon in the best performance of her career in a harrowing personal adventure dram about a long hike along the Pacific coast that brings about healing through trial and tribulation.
Paul Thomas Anderson’s INHERENT VICE is the worst film of his directorial career. Maddeningly incoherent
(deliberately, but who cares?), lame and overlong, it all adds up to nothing, and in the end is tragic because it burned up two and a half hours of your time during the holiday season. Ugh.