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The Rifleman: The Vision
Episode 26, Season 2

Chcik Flic Episode Was Big Disappointment Back Then
I happen to remember this episode very well...But not for reasons that it was so "beautiful" and all that crap, but for the reason it was so out there and lame as to be compared to any other episode of this great series..Back in the late 50s the TV western was king of the airwaves, and nobody loved them more than my Dad and I...Every night after dinner we used to settle in and watch the great westerns that for a while there were on every night...There were many favorites with my Dad and I, but The Rifleman was always #1...We looked forward to it every week and hardly ever missed it. The reason why this episode sticks out in my head so much is because of my father's reaction when it was over...He watched the whole thing without a word, but when it was over he got up and said..."Well, that stunk" I never heard him say that about any other episode...This one just disappointed him so much being unconventional that he just had to say it...Though many westerns indeed had so called "chic flic" episodes, (Like Bonanza, Gunsmoke, Wagon Train,etc.,) The Rifleman hardly ever went in that direction. Most of the time it was all about Lucas taking down bad guys, trying to avoid it most of the time, and in the end always trying to do the right thing as to setting a good example for raising his son right on the American frontier..This thing with the ghostly mother and Mark encountering her just didn't sit well with either my Dad nor I...I can even remember when we were watching it years later in reruns we would always refer to it as "that crappy one" Its certainly not inferior as to its acting and even some drama at the beginning, but make no mistake about it, for the true Rifleman fan this is chic flic shmultz...Just my opinion, but there you have...Only episode of the series that I think sucked...:)


Remembering When.....
Yes........Remembering when there was a time that television at least was making an attempt at being adventurous and exciting. Even if it was on a hokey family level. Now we have been reduced to seeing prime time become infested with the dreadful likes of the reality show revolution. Watching fat people work out and whine about how much being a porker has ruined their lives. Or, licking our chops at seeing the back stabbing behind the back two timing that is the very life breath of shows like "Survivor". Not even the situation comedy seems likely to survive the venomous infection that is realty TV. What chance does an old fashioned family drama have. If its all the same to you, I will catch a rerun of Kodiak. If there ever is one....

In Old California

Good Old Time Western
I really enjoyed this early western. Most of the oaters that came out of the 40s, even the ones honored to have John Wayne in them were not ones to be remembered in years to come as classics. This one is definitely a cut above the cookie cutter variety of that era. John Wayne plays a Boston bred pharmacist who is dapper and very sure of himself when it comes to either being strong and forceful, or brimming with confidence in regards to the ladies. Although there is some of the usual fisticuffs and shootouts, this is not a typical western with multiple gunfights and saloon brawls. Its just a bit more on the civilized side for that early era. Whether your an old time John Wayne fan, or just a wannabe cowpoke like me that longs for the good old days of television when the western was king, I think this is one definitely worth your time to sit a spell for...

In the Land of Women

"Land of Women" is the quintessential example of how so many of todays movies can be full of plastic characters, inane dialogue, and hopelessly under developed plots and still manage to get some poor slob to think its a good movie. The main character is a kid that runs off to live with his grandmother and for some reason, morphs immediately into the old man on the mountain as far as teaching life's secrets and dispensing endless wisdom. Mind you this stupid punk doesn't utter even a line that qualifies as indiscernible common sense in the entire movie. Never mind anything that is going to make a women swoon with his charm and charisma. Except of course the family of broads that live across the street from his grandmother that collectively seem to have never managed a life 'till the "wise" young punk moves to the neighborhood. The empty, plastic subplots and dialogue in this movie are far too numerous to give attention to in individual detail. Suffice it to say that the hapless viewer is supposed to accept that a righteous babe like Meg Ryan, who doesn't seem to have any job and has nothing better to do all day than to stroll the neighborhood with her dog, has never up until the stupid kids arrival met up with anyone that wants to listen to her, walk with her, or grow close to her and gain enough of her confidence to have her confessing about her husbands infidelity. She seems to have no friends or family that are available to listen to her whining, so she latches on to the "duh" looking punk that wanders the front lawn next door. Allow me to confess that I find it inconceivable that a looker like Meg Ryan with so much time on her hands and exposure seems to have up until the kids arrival, never been able to locate a sympathetic ear. (Trust me, if Meg Ryan was to be in my neighborhood all the time alone and walking a dog, she would find herself being infested with sympathetic ears.) She seems to hang on his every word and thought as if he is the true coming in her life of some living bastion of all things wise and wonderful. Yet when she gets around to confessing to him that her husband is having an affair after a mere couple of outings together, his response is " I have no concept of what that feels like". Would anyone out there reading this honestly surmise that someone you just confessed something heartfelt and hurtful to, who's first response is that they have no idea of what it is you are feeling, come to conclude that that person is someone who's opinion you will eagerly seek out and listen to at a very difficult time in your life? Why should he have any concept of what she is feeling. He is in reality shallow, immature, and stupid. But for some reason none of the women in this family seem to grasp the obvious. When the kid later on tells Meg Ryan that he thinks her husband must be out of his mind to be cheating on her, (although he doesn't even really know her at all and is just turned on by this hot milf who seems to love for some reason being around him) she tilts her head all puppy dog style and basks in the glow of the compliment. Like Hello??, you don't have a clue that this kid just has the hots for you and has never even met your husband that he has just judged. Oh and there is more. Meg Ryan talks her underage daughter, (who she is distant from, but the reason why is never explained), into going on an outing with the kid so he can get to know some of her friends and all, and is then shocked and concerned when she up and falls for him. Did anyone else see that scene coming? Obviously Mom of the year Meg Ryan didn't. Then of course there is the youngest daughter, the so called "genius" that seems to have no problem getting a handle on things like quantum physics, but has never heard of cancer. She of course falls in love with the dork and asks him to marry her when she grows up. Although among the trilogy of dumb broads in this family, it is the little one he has the least amount of interaction with. But of course it all makes sense in this ridiculous movie for he is the embodiment of all things grand and gregarious. This entire movie is in fact all things stupid, and that of garbage.

This movie hopelessly fails at even the bare minimum standards of a chick flick. If the chick in your life ever suggests it, do yourself a favor. Go screaming into the night.....

The Legend of Bagger Vance

...Just Lose Yourself In It
For some time now I have come to expect three things from any Robert Redford movie. Great stars, home spun story line, and something immensely beautiful in both cinematography and musical score. Bagger Vance does not disappoint anyone in all three respects. Like his epic "River Runs Through It", the story is narrated by an older man looking back on the story of his life. Or in the case of Bagger Vance, a moment or event that changed his life forever, and never to be forgotten. Bagger Vance is a movie of which you just sit back and enjoy after a long hard day, or late in the evening when all is quiet and you desperately need an escape. It is moving, often funny, exquisitely photographed, and has a soft luxurious musical score similar to "Field of Dreams". It is also the very last appearance of the legendary Jack Lemon in a movie, who is also the narrator the tale. I have read a few other scathing reviews of this beautifully told story by others that do not possess a sentimental bone in their bodies, as well as golfers. Who for some reason see it fit to proclaim that they hated the movie and make sure you understand " by the way, I'm a golfer". Like knowing that is supposed to mean their opinion should carry some sort of premium to it. Personally, I have always felt there is something a little strange about any man that enjoys spending so many weekends shelling out decent bucks in chasing a little ball around a big green field rather than with his family. But,.. that's another matter. Let me confess that I am neither a golfer, a baseball player, basketball star, or football hero. But I happen to love "Field of Dreams", "Hoosiers", and "Rudy". And I loved this movie. I did take one star off on the meter for the story is not quite up to par at times with "River Runs Through It". It can be a little slow at times. But trust me, you will find this movie staying with you long after its final scene. Take a chance. You won't be sorry...


.....In Praise Of Being Uncool
If you have been one of the unfortunates to have actually seen Juno, and hated it, (and come here sometimes as I do to relish in the negative reviews), you have probably read and heard just about every negative comment there is to offer by now concerning this horrendous movie. Rather than repeat the obvious flaws that so many others before me have picked up on, I thought I would offer a few new and original observations that seemed to have gone unnoticed, or unmentioned about this dreadful movie.

1. Many have taken offense at the blatant bad taste in making a seemingly jovial comedy about teen pregnancy. But I have failed to see anyone anywhere take notice of the small, but clearly defined subplot of Juno's best friend and her penchant for "doing it" with teachers. In case anyone hasn't been reading any headlines lately, teachers, coaches, aides and other folks we trust to educate and set a good example for our children "poo tanging" with underage students is at an all time high. Not exactly something to poke fun at. Yet it has seemed to go unnoticed in Juno's wealth of wretchedness.

2. We are supposed to find Juno funny, snappy, hip, and of course grow close and affectionate of her as the movie progresses. However, can anyone reading this actually feel they would sympathize, or care about a young woman that when first seeing her baby in the ultra sound says:....."I can't believe there are saps that actually cry at this moment". Oh God......(sniff), did that ever come to getting the old eyes welling here for a girl so sweet. (Enter: Extreme sarcasm).

3. I noticed that even some of the most critical of reviewers here couldn't help but praise the performance of Jason Bateman and Jennifer Garner as the idiot adoptive parents. Try as I might to find something to like about this movie, I cannot give any credit at all to Bateman and Garner. Someone please tell me what they did to get any recognition. I just cannot see it.

4. Oh and speaking of Jason Bateman, why is it that when he up and tells Juno that he is leaving his wife, not a word is mentioned in criticism of why he went and took out a full blown ad, met with Juno, and set up the whole adoption if he was all that wishy washy and unhappy to begin with? Oh......Juno gets mad at him all right and throws a tantrum. But she never once says....."Why did you set this whole thing up and promise me a set of parents if you weren't even happy?" "You stupid bastard." Not a word is mentioned about that. Did anyone else besides me even notice that as rather strange? Pea brained Bateman later in the scene tells Vanessa that he never said" he would be a good father". Yet earlier in the interview scene Juno asks Mark if he is ready to be a father and he says he "looks forward to coaching soccer and helping build volcano's for science projects". Maybe it's me but that sounds to me like someone who is saying he will be a good father. I guess the director and everybody else involved in this rotten movie forgot to proofread the whole script.

5. To carry on with Jason Bateman and his running out on Jennifer Garner at the 11th hour, what about "Vanessa's" reaction to it all. She neither cried, screamed, carried on, slapped him, or did anything else emotionally substantial for a woman that just found out a month before a new baby is to enter her life that she is being divorced, and all at once an instant single mother. Please tell me ladies, is there any woman out there who's biggest reaction to such an event would be sitting down on their stairs and sighing?, as was Vanessa's reaction? She acted more like he had just informed her the sewer is backing up. In real life, or even in a real movie, Jason would have been awakened by a well aimed two by four across the head and dumped on the curb.

In conclusion, Juno is the latest, and by far the worst example of just how far one will reach to avoid not being called cool. The real irony here however is that this garbage of a movie that has become the poster child for cool, is in essence the most totally plastic movie I have ever seen. People love Juno for they can call themselves cool. They laugh at Juno to be cool, are brought to tears at the end of Juno to be cool, and tell everyone else who hates it that they do so for they are NOT cool. Being cool simply has to be the one common denominator in all favorable reviews of this movie for Juno can be literally eviscerated with flaws. The same caliber of Academy members that honored movies like "Schindler's List", and "A Beautiful Mind" cannot possibly consider Juno to be worth even showing up at the awards. But nowadays heaven forbid they, or anyone else be accused of being "soooooo out of it". Alas, I remember a happy time when the Academy of arts and sciences were proud, card carrying members of the ultimate institute of snobbery. They thrived in snubbing the cutesy pie, record setting ticket sale movies for whatever theatrical release they considered totally dashing, and debonair. I can actually remember hating them for that back in my early days of youth. Now I can only hope we see a return of it. Let me be the very first, the "Norma Rae" if you will of those that are willing to hold their head high and proclaim they are so very...... uncool. Ladies and Gentleman..... Juno sucked.

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