Sunday, August 26, 2007

walking and remembering

These days I have been trying to learn how to use my new Canon XT camera, my first "real" camera. So yesterday I decided to take a walk by Santurce and take photos. While stopping at the Calle del Parque, I decided to take some shots of the old movie theaters there. One of them (Music Hall) has been repaired and looks great, the other (Radio City) is abandoned and to add insult to injury, there are pigeon cages where the marquee used to stand.

I loved these two theaters. At the Music Hall, I used to see all the Walt Disney movies when I was a kid. They specialized in that kind of movie. They also used to show MGM festivals in which they would re-release old movies such as "The Time Machine" and "The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm". I recall that my favorite place to sit there was in the second floor balcony. Wonder if its still there after the remodeling.

The Radio City was a huge 1960's type theater. It had a huge screen and huge curtains that would open up slowly before the main feature began. It gave even the worst movies an aura of greatness. Many of the great blockbusters used to play there. The lines for movies like "Jaws" were enormous. Between blockbusters they used to show horror moves such as my personal favorite "The Abominable Dr. Phibes".

Anyway, it was an interesting walk. I may take it again next week, just looking around and taking photos.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

in praise of weird women

Yes, the slightly disturbed woman. There's something about her. About her unpredictability, her strange moods. We find a strange sort of fascination in her. And filmmakers know that. They realize that loopy women make for great thrillers. And I saw one of them last night. It's "The Bridesmaid", a movie by acclaimed French director Claude Chabrol, the so called "French Hitchcock". It's a slow moving, but griping story about a man who falls in love with a woman who at first seems to be slightly eccentric, but turns out to be much more. It's a movie about love, jealousy and obsesion. But mostly about how love can blind us from seeing the obvious. And it has some nifty suspense scenes.

Monday, August 13, 2007


It's official. Showtime is now cooler and edgier than HBO. Watch this show tonight and see why.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

"The Page Turner"- cool movie

Melanie is a potential piano child prodigy. But her big rehearsal is ruined by the action of a female jury member. As a full grown woman, she ends up working for the woman. Ans she plots her revenge. But not a revenge typical of Hollywood movies, she doesn't turn into a "Single White Female" weirdo. And her revenge does not involve killing pets and things like that. But she does get a revenge. A very intelligent and French one. This is such a cool movie. A real thriller. A realistic one. I loved it.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Saturday at 4pm

Do you have a favorite time of the week? I do. And it's not Friday at 6pm as most people would choose. It's Saturday at 4pm. And it's been that way ever since I remember. There is something about that time that brings out a certain element of calmness. Maybe I relate it to my childhood days when I used to go to Saturday afternoon movies with my friends and we would leave the theater around 4pm feeling great. Maybe not. Maybe it's just that Saturday at 4pm is just a calm moment for me. A moment to stop thinking. A time to listen to some music. A moment whe weekend has not yet reached it's middle point and one can close the eyes and wonder what it will still bring.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Puerto Rican Disney World zombies

This is my second blog entry about it. But there's a reason for it.It just happened that the other day before a work presentation, the 12 people there, all of them educated professionals started talking about vacation trips. And somebody mentioned she was going to Disney World. And then everyone started talking about the place, about the rides, about the fact that they go there every year. "Don't miss the blabla mountain", "no, now the blabla ride is even better".After 15 minutes of this I had to leave the room. It was like the "Invasion of the Body Snatchers", only people were turning into Disney zombies.

Why are people here so obsessed with Disney World? Fuck. There's a whole world out there of amazing, beautiful, life changing places and they are stuck in EPCOT?

As for taking the kids, ok. Take them there once. But let the see the world too.Let them see New York City,let them watch the sea lions in San Francisco bay, take them to the Grand Canyon. There are REAL places out there, goddammit.

Monday, August 06, 2007

I am stuck in the 70's....

I read somewhere that we always love more movies one sees when one is a kid. One feels a particular fondness for them. And I'm finding this to be true these days. I am constantly watching movies from the 1970's.Maybe because it was the most fascinating period in American cinema. And it was the most experimental, interesting decadein cinema (until George Lucas dumbed everything down.) And maybe it's because those movies remind me of a time when my life was simpler and angst-free.

I saw "Blue Water, White Death" at the old Metropolitan theater in Santurce. I remember being blown away by it for several reasons. Well, two of them, really. A scene in which divers leave their shark cage and swim among sharks. I couldn't believe how crazy that was. And the scene when they finally find the Great White Shark and the shark basically tries to tear apart the shark cages. And almost succeeds. Watching the movie again, 35 years later, I am still amazed at it.

So I had my nostalgic moment. And further proof of how great movies were way back then.