May 2014 Archives

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The latest collaboration of the late Mickey Spillane and the still living (whew!) Max Allan Collins,  King of the Weeds, the "penultimate" Mike Hammer novel,  is out now. 

 
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Here's some great news my colleague WG sent: 

(WASHINGTON-AFP) - U.S. regulators on Friday approved for market a new kind of prosthetic arm that allows a person to flex certain muscles in order to perform complex tasks.

The development of the DEKA Arm System -- nicknamed the "Luke" arm after Luke Skywalker in Star Wars -- was funded by the Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

To read more, click here.

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After a one month hiatus, Greenwich Library Cult Films returns Thursday May 15th (details here) with a showing of director Tim Burton's 1994 classic Ed Wood.  This black and white homage to the so called "worst director of all time" , Edward D. Wood Jr. (1924-1978), may play fast and loose with the facts, but it's a genuinely affectionate -and funny!- look at the man and some of his better known productions.

The film takes place during the mid 1950s when Wood (Johnny Depp, who's good but seems to be channeling Jon Lovitz), an unemployed screenwriter and failed playwright, attempts to secure financial backing and major studio recognition for his films.  Along the way, he befriends a variety of bizarre,  eccentric Hollywood types, including Bunny Breckinridge (a droll, camped-up Bill Murray), TV horror movie hostess Vampira (Lisa Marie), the fake medium (and popular television personality) Criswell (Jeffrey Jones), and down-at-his-luck faded film star Bela Lugosi (Martin Landau, whose sincere and sometimes amusing  performance in this film  won him the 1994 Best Supporting Actor Oscar).  Meanwhile Wood  also struggles with keeping his secret desire to wear women's clothing from girlfriend Dolores Fuller (Sarah Jessica Parker).

Director Burton, working from both the screenplay by Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski, and Rudolpf Grey's  book on Wood, Nightmare of Ecstasy, guides the film along in a leisurely manner.  Burton touches on the various mishaps and situations Wood and his friends endured while making three of his best known films, Glen or Glenda, Bride of the Monster, and the immortal Plan 9 From Outer Space.  Solid  support from the cast, plus nice supporting bits by Patricia Arquette, Stanley DeSantis, Mike Starr, and a dubbed Vincent D'Onofrio (as Orson Welles!), make Ed Wood the movie an entertaining pleasure  from start to finish. (It's also probably the last Burton film to have a coherent storyline, I think.)

Ed Wood will be shown in the second floor Meeting Room on Thursday May 15th beginning at 6:00 pm.  It's 127 minutes long, is rated R (mostly for language), and was filmed in black and white.  Yours truly will  start the program with a brief discussion of the film and it's main subject.  If you're into unappreciated little gems, like Ed Wood, this is for you.

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taintthemeat.pngWith Free Comic Book Day occurring this Saturday, I took a look at our graphic library  collection (which is all over the place; fiction, humor, young adult, etc.) and remembered this recent collection of great horror comic stories by the terrific artist Jack Davis. 

'Tain't The Meat...It's The Humanity And Other Stories Illustrated By Jack Davis is a collection of several  stories the artist illustrated for EC Comics' Tales From The Crypt magazine between 1951-55.

 

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