Charles Portis wrote a fascinating novel True Grit, that was subsequently made into two very good films. We've shown our hand in this write up but know that you will still listen to get the details. The first film was a 1969 production starring John Wayne, Kim Darby, and Glenn Campbell. It was directed by Henry Hathawy is remains a classic example of the great American Western. We think the 2010 version by the Coen brothers and starring Jeff Bridges, Hailee Steinfeld, and Matt Damon also deserves a place in that pantheon. We are joined by our compatriot Mike Lembke, and hope that you will enjoy our spoilers and digressions.
Some science fiction books make an accurate prediction of the future, but not a whole lot of them. Make Room! Make Room! by Harry Harrison misses the mark as far as the year 2019 goes. However, the current issue of climate change may make some of the food shortages that are depicted in the book become a stark reality. It is a story of the dangers of overpopulation and the limited resources of the planet earth. You know, earth, the one we're on. The film version of the book is a classic dystopian vision of the future, with food shortages and over crowded cities, Soylent Green. The book and the film are quite different (wait for the big reveal at the end of this show). Spoiler alert....we hold nothing back.
We hope you enjoy the discussion and the digressions!
Music kindly provided by Erdenstern.
Readings by Us and Aaron Kleinschmidt
We must apologize for the muffled sound quality in the first 22:00 minutes of the episode. It does clear right up after that. In this episode we take a look at the Pierre Boulle novel Bridge Over the River Kwai and the similarly named film Bridge On the River Kwai. Roger Ebert gave the film 4 stars and said "...Although the film's two most important characters are both mad, the hero more than the villain, we're not quite certain what is intended by that final dialogue. Part of the puzzle is caused by the film's shifting points of view." Jeff loves that final line.
This is absolutely a classic WWII film that is more about personal relationships than the war. The book is also a classic of course and is a quick read that offers a slightly different perspective on the story than the film. Mike Lembke joins us for a review of both. Music provided by Erdenstern Readings by Aaron Kleinschmidt
Just to mix things up a bit we have decided to take a look at the original The Tower of the Elephant story by Robert E. Howard and two, count 'em two, comic adaptations of the same story. The first Conan comic Dave ever came to love is The Savage Sword of Conan, and it contained the beautifully illustrated Alfredo Alcala, John Buscema and Roy Thomas version that we review here. And we compare it to the Dark Horse Comics version of said Conan story by Kurt Busiek and Cary Nord. Now there is something a bit different for our show; a comic book and book comparison. We hope you enjoy the discussion and digressions!
Music kindly provided by Erdenstern.
Readings by Rick Hollander and Daryl McDaniel.
The second Conan movie, Conan the Destroyer is our topic this evening. We compare and contrast it to the original Robert E Howard stories, as well as the first DeLaurentiis / Schwarzenneger film. Roger Ebert said "The first Conan movie, "Conan the Barbarian", was a dark and gloomy
fantasy about the shadows of prehistory. This second film is sillier,
funnier, and more entertaining. It doesn't take place before the dawn of
time, but instead in that shadowy period of movie history occupied by
queens and monsters, swords and castles, warriors and fools" He shows a good understanding of the differences, although we think he was a bit kinder to the film than we are. Join Dave, Jeff and Mike as we slice into Conan the Destroyer. Lot's of laughs and barbaric appreciation.
We will do the Tower of the Elephant next time. We pushed it back a show.
As promised many shows ago we return to the Robert E. Howard's Conan Tales. We slice into The Scarlet Citadel, a tale of high adventure, (oh, that's a cliche). It's the story of Conan's capture on the battlefield, imprisonment in a Citadel (Scarlet of course) his subsequent escape and return to his kingdom. Yes, there is a whole lot packed into this short story. The second story Queen of the Black Coast follows Conan on his pirating and jungle adventures with the fascinating pirate Queen Belit. Sit back and join Dave, Jeff and Mike as we discuss said stories.
Readings by Aaron and David Kleinschmidt
Music provided with kind permission from Erdenstern.
Next up will be the film Conan the Destroyer followed by the promised Tower of the Elephant (book and comic versions)
In an attempt to be more current and contemporary we review another recent film and book. READY PLAYER ONE by Ernest Cline. The book was published in 2011 it takes place in a dystopian society where people spend a lot of time in virtual reality, in order to avoid the real run-down world. The book is Cline's first published novel. Steven Spielberg takes the material in a slightly different direction as he brings it to the big screen. We compare the two on the show today.
Up next Robt. E Howard THE TOWER OF THE ELEPHANT, QUEEN OF THE BLACK COAST, and/or THE SCARLET CITADEL......and the film CONAN THE DESTROYER.
Music provided courtesy of Erdenstern
Readings by Aaron Kleinschmidt