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PCR #456 (Vol. 9, No. 51) This edition is for the week of December 15--21, 2008.
Mike's RantMike's Bust
Hello gang! Hopefully things go better this week. Shall we begin?

The Tampa Film Review or December áby Nolan Canova
"Yes Man" áby Mike Smith
Christmas Matinees -ľ Forgotten Holiday Turkeys! áby ED Tucker
R.I.P. Bettie "Queen of Curves" Page, 1923-2008 áby Lisa Ciurro
March of the Wooden Soldiers áby Chris Woods
Whatever Happened To Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer? áby Paul Guzzo
Last Week .... So What He Really Wants To Do Is Direct? .... Movie Notes .... Music Notes .... Passing On .... The Year That Was: Part One .... .... .... And The Oscar Should Have Gone To... áby Mike Smith
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Readers of last week's PCR may have seen the childish, abbreviated Rant I put up due to a computer glitch. To do the readers justice I usually put several hours of research, etc. into the Rant before I sit down to type. As you saw, it was a hell of a week for those passing on and I tried to do each one of them justice, only to have my work vanish like a bag of chips after an evening of sitting in Mark Goshen's garage in high school. Fingers are crossed for this issue.

This week the Director's Guild of America announced that Pulitzer Prize winning critic Roger Ebert will be made an honorary life member at the group's annual awards ceremony on January 31. Ebert's only behind the camera credits are the screenplays for "Beyond the Valley of the Dolls," "Up" and "Beneath the Valley of the Ultra Vixens."

Though it was reported in several British tabloids, Eddie Murphy has denied that he will play the Riddler in the next Batman film. Also mentioned as having netted the role: Shia LaBeouf.

After netting a whopping $17 million during it's entire run I can't imagine why Hollywood waited 12 years to announce a new "Phantom" film. Someone wake Billy Zane and give him the news.

The American Film Institute picked its top 10 films of the year. They are, in no particular order:

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, The Dark Knight, Frost/Nixon, Frozen River, Gran Torino, Iron Man, Milk, WALL-E, Wendy and Lucy and The Wrestler.

JAWS fans take notice! For the next 4 days you can bid on Ebay for a master tape of unreleased recordings from Bob Dylan's "Nashville Skyline" album. The tape is one of 2000 that a fan bought for $50 at a warehouse sale in 1990. Today's trivia: the song being played on the beach at the beginning of JAWS is "Nashville Skyline."

Majel Barrett-Roddenberry, actress and widow of "Star Trek" creator Gene Roddenberry, passed away after a long battle with leukemia. She was 76. A part of the "Star Trek" universe from the very beginning (only she and Leonard Nimoy appeared in the show's pilot and the series), she played nurse Christine Chapel in the original series as well as providing the voice of the Enterprise computer. She is the only actress to have appeared in all (5) of "Star Trek's" television incarnations. She will also be heard as the voice of the Enterprise in J.J. Abrams upcoming "Star Trek" film.

Mark Felt, who after more then 30 years announced himself as the infamous Watergate informer "Deep Throat," died in his sleep this week. He was 95. In 1972, as associate director of the F.B.I., Felt aggreed to meet with Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, providing much inside information about the Nixon White House.

It seems like only yesterday that we were all celebrating 2008. Here are some of the events that took place between January and June 2008.


PASSED ON: Vampira, Brad Renfro, Allan Melvin, Susanne Pleshette, John Stewart, Heath Ledger, Bobby Fischer..


Roger Clemens jeapordized his Hall of Fame career by testifying before Congress regarding his use of performance enhancing drugs. Congress (and most of America) don't believe him.

"No Country For Old Men" wins the Best Picture Academy Award.

After losing the Oscar last year Eddie Murphy wins a record 3 Golden Raspberry Awards signifying the worse in film.

Turns out Barack Obama has a tendancy to borrow other peopls words when giving speeches. Also, anyone who dare uses his middle name, Hussein is branded a radical and/or a racist.

On February 10 Roy Scheider loses a long and brave battle with cancer.


Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Barry Morse, Steve Gerber, Buddy Miles, William F. Buckley, Mike Smith.


Ironically, several people faint at the same time during speeches given by Barack Obama

Heather Mills fucks Paul McCartney one more time, getting $ 48.6 MILLION from Sir Paul in their divorce.

I officially declare Obama's campaign dead after it is revealed that his pastor of 20 years, his spiritual adviser, the man who married him and his wife and baptized his children, Reverend Jeremiah Wright, had made racially inflamatory statetments about the United States, including that "9/11 was America's chickens coming home to roost", that a prayer should read"not God bless America but GOD DAMN America" and that America is "the U S of KKK.". After much discussion Obama cuts his ties with Wright and insists that, EVEN THOUGH HE SAT IN WRIGHT'S CHURCH FOR 20 YEARS he had NEVER heard Wright say these things.


Jeff Healey, Anthony Minghella, Ivan Dixon, Paul Scofield, Neil Aspinall, Abby Mann, Robin Moore, Richard Widmark.


My son and nephew's alma matter, The University of Kansas, wins the NCAA Men's Basketball title.

On April 26 the final piece of my lifes' puzzle is added as Juanita says "I do." To me!


Charlton Heston, Dith Pran, Danny Federicci, Paul Davis, Joe Feeney.


Five year anniversary of President Bush standing in front of a MISSION ACCOMPLISHED banner. Close.

Baseball's greatest hitting catcher, Mike Piazza, retires.

Insisting the presidential primary race is not yet over, Hillary Clinton reminds reporters that "Bobby Kennedy wasn't shot until June."


Eddie Arnold, Sydney Pollack, Dick Martin, Earle Hagen, Alexander Courage.


In an interview, Barack Obama assures reporters he is aware of the 57 states in the union. Close.

Trying to drum up publicity for his overlong and not very good World War II film, Spike Lee criticizes Clint Eastwood for not featuring black soldiers in his recent World War II films. Eastwood opines that Lee needs to study history more and "shut his mouth".

President Bush is mystified that gas has approached $4.00 a gallon.

In two personal notes, I am named Vice-President of the Kansas City Film Critics Circle. I also gain some street cred with PCR readers when I'm photographed with rapper Tech 9.


Tim Russert, Jim McKay, George Carlin.


Well, that's all for now. Have a great week and a safe and happy holiday. See ya!

"Mike's Rant" is ©2008 by Michael A. Smith.  Webpage design and all graphics herein are creations of Nolan B. Canova. All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2008 by Nolan B. Canova.