Thursday, January 19, 2006

Great Books - Good Movies - Cool Bands.

One good thing about quitting your job is all the free time. I have been catching up on all KINDS of good shit these days.

I recently realized that I needed to read a lot of books that it seems like everyone is supposed to have read, but I am an idiot and haven't - "Catcher in the Rye," "Catch-22," "Slaughterhouse-5," "Brave New World," "1984," etc. I know - "you haven't read those!?!??!"

Yes - I suck.

I loved 1984, Catcher in the Rye was okay and so far Catch-22 is pretty good. But the one I loved the most was "Hangover Square" by Patrick Hamilton, and all of a sudden I am a HUGE Patrick Hamilton fan. I only found out about him (I suspect like a lot of people) because of Nick Hornby - another favorite author. Nick Hornby's book "The Pollysyllabic Spree" (a collection of his book reviews) includes reviews of Hamilton's stuff and a selection from his book "The Midnight Bell"

I liked the selection and took Hornby's praise to heart. I read Hangover Square and loved it. The problem is... IT'S THE ONLY ONE OF HIS BOOKS CURRENTLY IN PRINT IN AMERICA!!!!

I had to send away to the UK to get "Twenty Thousand Streets Under the Sky." I hope I do not regret that... but I don't think I will.

I have also checked out the two movies made based on Hamilton plays - "Gaslight" (with Ingrid Bergman and Joseph Cotten - need I say more?) and Hitchock's (need I say more?) "Rope." Needless to say - I would highly recommend these to anyone who is interested in such things and hasn't already checked them out. The cool thing about the Gaslight DVD is that it also comes with th 1940 British version of the film which, if anything - is better!

One last note - Hornby only got into Hamilton because of a band, Marah, who loves his stuff and even entitled an album "20,000 Streets Under the Sky." Needless to say, I had to backtrack and check them out - what I have heard so far is pretty damn cool. Check out their web-page yourself and download a track or two. It doesn't suck. I just ordered 20,000 Streets - I'll let you know if it is worthwhile or not - if anyone cares. Not that anyone reads this crap...

11 comments:

wiggins said...

This whole post was mainly to get you off your ass and started on the book club again...

Mike said...

Actually, I have an idea for the book club - I thought this would work with our crowd: The Natural. I've seen the movie dozens of times, but the book - particularly the ending - is supposed to be significantly different.

I was going to say that you should read Catcher in the Rye. I would have thought that you would have really liked it. I read that twice in high school. Maybe I should read it again - but based on your brief review there, maybe I've outgrown it.

Mike said...

And, to be honest, I've read Catcher in the Rye and 1984. The others I was supposed to read, but I'm sure I only read the Cliff Notes (and I'm sure that I wrote stunning essays--comparing and contrasting those books with Pee Wee's Big Adventure and Dumbo--nonetheless) for the others.

Mike said...

Yeah - the guy is about that HS/young college age (if I remember correctly) and he does all kinds of stuff that you couldn't even really imagine doing. Now that stuff doesn't seem so cool.

wiggins said...

Yeah - I got the feeling that I would have liked it more as an angry young man. I didn't DIS-like it, I just didn't really see what all the fuss was about. I guess it was important at the time and would be cool at a certain age. Other than that...

Mike said...

Pee Wee's won an Oscar (best original score I believe). That truly makes it a classic.

I've been to Large Marge's restaurant in the CA desert a few times. They have those ginormous dinosaurs out front.

wiggins said...

Pee-wee's Big Adventure is CLASSIC cinema. THAT should be required viewing.

"Tell 'em Large Marge sent ya!!!"

Mike said...

Why is it putting my comments before yours? It's making it look like I'm psychic or something.

Mike said...

So, the Natural, good idea?

wiggins said...

The commenst are getting all kinds of messed up. Oh well - time to leave HB, I think.

wiggins said...

The Natural could be cool. I don't have a problem with the books you chose for the book club - I just don't generally care for social reading. I don't care for much social stuff...