Monday, January 07, 2019


What have I heard, seen, done during the past week or so that had some musical connection? On New Year's Eve we watched two separate chunks of films on TCM channel, "That's Entertainment # I", and "That's Entertainment # III" - book-ending our other movie viewing that evening, until it was time to raise a glass to 2019. Those shows are such good value - patchworks of old musical movies of the MGM variety. Lots of dancing and spectacle rather than any concentration on purely vocal numbers. The dancing was, of course, perfection. Personally, though, when it comes to movie musicals I prefer the Rogers and Hammerstein types: Oklahoma - of course, Carousel, Show Boat, Kismet, The Student Prince - those kinds of musicals.

We watched a couple of movies with a musical heart during the week: The Jazz Ambassadors, and Lifted, available on Netflix or Amazon Prime - memory fails as to which. The Jazz Ambassadors is an interesting documentary; also been shown on PBS at some point in the past.
The Cold War and Civil Rights collide in this remarkable story of music, diplomacy and race. Beginning in 1955, when America asked its greatest jazz artists to travel the world as cultural ambassadors, Louis Armstrong, Dizzy Gillespie, Duke Ellington and their mixed-race band members, faced a painful dilemma: how could they represent a country that still practiced Jim Crow segregation?
[From IMDb]

Lifted is a movie from 2011, and not our usual fare - it has a blend of 'flag-waver' and Christian-themed story-line. Anyway, we'd started so decided to finish! I didn't hate it, didn't love it. It's the story of a young boy who entered a singing competition hoping to win some money to help with family finances; his father, a reservist, had been called to service in Afghanistan. The boy's mother was a drug addict. Acting was okay, singing was okay, and the story did take a surprisingly odd turn.


Wisewebwoman said...

I hear the Green Book is a movie not to be missed. Must track it down here, hopefully, they come and go so fast. I'm a fan of some of the old musicals. Today has not been kind to a lot of them :( (thinking of South Pacific)


Twilight said...

Wisewebwoman ~ Yes, I've been reading about "The Green Book" this morning and intend to look out for a chance to see it. We did actually see the movie that won a Golden Globe last evening: "Bohemian Rhapsody" - enjoyed it too. That's the first time, I think, that we've ever actually seen the movie that won, before the award ceremony. :)

Agree re South Pacific due to ham-handed casting of a leading character! Much as I love the old Rogers and Hammerstein-type movies, I'm not sure they could ever be successfully re-made -at least not as full-blown movies with big name stars; for the stage though, yes, that does seems to work.