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Archive for November 13th, 2017

With songwriting icon Jimmy Webb at The Cutting Room on Saturday night in Manhattan

by Sam Juliano

And now it is Thanksgiving Day that approaches as weather in the northeast is now conforming with time of year.  The Caldecott Medal series continues as part 2 of the Greatest Television Series Countdown inches closer.  The movie season has now reached what is usually the richest span of the year, and awards groups and critics are beginning to prepare their annual ‘Best of’ lists.

Songwriting icon Jimmy Webb performed a concert/review of his greatest hits at Manhattan’s The Cutting Room, and later signed copies of his new memoir “The Cake in the Rain.” Webb gloriously sang and played the piano with the able assistance of musicians. His greatest masterpiece “MacArthur Park” (my favorite pop song of the rock era), “By the Time I Get to Phoenix,” “Galveston”, “The Worst That Could Happen,” “Up, Up and Away,” “Witchita Lineman,” “All I Know,” “Didn’t I?” and a few non-Webb songs comprised the venue. This is the second time Lucille and I saw Webb over the past year.

The entire brood attended the annual ToyCom event in the PAL building in Parsippany, N.J. Melanie, Sammy, Danny, Jillian and Jeremy are seen in photo below outside by one of the classic cars previously used in movies on Sunday afternoon. Great day out for the entire family.

As a lifelong Agatha Christie buff and a passionate adherent of the BBC series “Poirot”, I went in to the new Kenneth Branagh version of “Murder on the Orient Express” more than skeptical. David Suchet after all is far and away the definitive Poirot, the one Dame Agatha envisioned and the one her family immediately recognized as the living embodiment of Poirot as written. The new film is well mounted, acted and filmed, and is intermittently riveting, but all in all somewhat uneven. Branagh, with the most extravagant mustache ever negotiated makes a decent Poirot, but this re-make is not the best version of this seminal mystery novel. Still, I’ll go with 3.5 of 5 and offer a modest recommendation. Saw the film with the entire brood last night in Ridgefield Park. (more…)

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