Recent comments

  • Anyone have any Recommendations?   14 years 10 weeks ago

    An interesting book that touches upon the history of ideas is A History of Knowledge by Charles Van Doren. It is written for the average reader. A wonderful book about the history of science and philosophy and the effects movements in these fields have on people and each other is Science and the Modern World by Alfred North Whitehead; the book is difficult, and you may not agree with Whitehead's neo-Platonism that seeps through in parts, but you won't waste your time reading it.

    For a history of philosophy, I find it hard to beat John Passmore's sadly out-of-print Hundred Years of Philosophy. Despite its title, the book traces most ideas far enough back to provide a pretty solid understanding of Western philosophy.

    Just a few suggestions. Have you read J. M. Roberts' History of the World or the Durants' Story of Civilization? I love Story; I am halfway through Roberts' book, and so far, it is the best one-volume attempt at a complete world history I have encountered.

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • Nobel Prize Winners for Literature   14 years 10 weeks ago

    I'm not overly into poetry. It's been a long time (undergrad) since I've read any, and much longer since I read any for my own pleasure. That said, however, I will check him out. I did see that he wrote a translation of Beowulf, and I'm definitely interested in getting a copy of that.

  • Anyone have any Recommendations?   14 years 10 weeks ago

    Thanks for the recommendations, bertie. I am somewhat interested in philosophy and the history of philosophy as well. It's not quite what I had in mind when I made my original list, but I think it is something that I will definitely check out.

    Thanks!

  • Some I tried to read but haven't, yet, finished   14 years 10 weeks ago

    I think I can sympathize with your "reading rut". This has happened to me at various times during the last 10 years. For me, two things seem to work: first, just wait it out. I do other things for a while, concentrate on other hobbies and soon I feel like picking up a book again. Second, I give myself more selection. Sometimes, it's not that I don't want to read, but I don't want to read anything that is currently on my shelf.

    Lately, I've been trying to expand my reading of history, so I think of subjects I'm interested in and then find books about that subject that have gotten good reviews or good comments (I like Amazon.com for their reader comments... it is a good way, IMHO, to figure out if a book is a good read).

    I hope this helps some.

  • Science Fiction Novels waiting to be made into movies   14 years 10 weeks ago

    Haldeman's THE FOREVER WAR is a good candidate, given sfx technology, but if they string it into FOREVER PEACE and then FOREVER FREE--watch out. Talk about lousy endings: FOREVER FREE really ends as though he wrote himself into a corner. Things hum along nicely for the first 3/4 of the book, then start to fall apart, which is too bad.

    And you're right about Clarke's RWR, although that might be a bit tricky, even with sfx.

  • Jojo's Top Ten Musicals   14 years 10 weeks ago

    I've only seen Cabaret twice (once when it first came out and sometime within the last year on video - I fell asleep part way thru the video). Although I've always loved the music, there's something about the movie that just doesn't click with me and I don't know why. Maybe I need to check it out again.

  • Jojo's Funniest Movies   14 years 10 weeks ago

    I've been laughing ever since I read your comment -- the whole premise for Springtime for Hitler was so absurd, you can't help but laugh! Thanks for jogging my memory.

  • My All-Time Favorite Recording Artists   14 years 10 weeks ago

    Great list! While I probably do not dig James Taylor as much as you do (I really only love Sweet Baby James), I am thrilled to find that somebody remembered the mighty Buddy Holly! He is all too often over-looked on lists such as this one.

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • 0010. 10 Great Beatles Albums   14 years 10 weeks ago

    There, Bertie, I've posted my CC list for John Lennon. I may play with the order of some of the lesser-rated albums, but the ratings are fixed.

    I hope you enjoy!

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • Classical Music And The Movies (With Sound)   14 years 10 weeks ago

    A couple more memorable moments, at least to me:

    (of course) Beethoven's Choral Symphony (Symphony #9) in A CLOCKWORK ORANGE
    Chopin's Piano Concerto #1 in E Minor, movement #2, the Romance & Larghetto in THE TRUMAN SHOW, which is a beautiful accompanyment to Truman's budding romance.

  • movies everyone else seemed to like but I didn't...   14 years 10 weeks ago

    I'm not sure who you're talking to when you say 'everyone seemed to like' Starship Troopers. ST is so colossally bad that only by laughing at it can I justify having watched the whole thing. It's a horrible train wreck of a movie.

    The other movies on this list are geared towards a young male mentality, so if that not your things, it's easy to see how you wouldn't like them.

  • Great Opening Lines - A Challenge List - VOLUME TWO   14 years 10 weeks ago

    HINT re. #59 : Mystery fans should know this one, it's a classic of the genre.

  • CC00007: John Lennon   14 years 10 weeks ago

    I spent entirely too much time on this last night! My wife wasn't feeling well, so I spent most of the night by myself finishing up the Hitchcock (which I've been working on for at least a week) and creating this list. It helps that Lennon doesn't have so many solo albums as some artists have and that there is quite a bit of consensus on his work (unlike the Beach Boys, which felt like it took forever because of all the wildly differing opinions!).

    George Harrison shouldn't take long, but Paul's got quite a bit to sort through. That may take a bit longer.

    So, what do you think?

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • movies with good dance scenes..   14 years 10 weeks ago

    The 1948 film is about ballet and contains many wonderful sequences of ballet dance. I highly recommend it if you like ballet!

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • Classical Music And The Movies (With Sound)   14 years 10 weeks ago

    Looking at the comment logs, you and I are both scarcer than usual. I wonder which of us is busier. :) I'm looking forward to a little more Listology time for both of us.

  • Anyone have any Recommendations?   14 years 10 weeks ago

    The Durants' Story of Civilization is an 11 volume work.

    I also have been after that longer Wells' work. The used bookstore around here are littered with the shorter version, but I crave that complete outline!

    So, what did you think about Roberts? I'm guessing since you have read it twice, you must not completely despise it!

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • CC00007: John Lennon   14 years 10 weeks ago

    Wow! quick work. Maybe it isn't as much work as I imagined, or maybe you've got a lot of time on your hands. In any case, thanks muchly.

  • Movies to Avoid at All Cost   14 years 10 weeks ago

    Your rejection of the films on this list is not "by the way", it's the main street. You owe us reasons for these rejections.

    My answers to your questions are: (1) no, the two concepts seem to get along fine, and (2) no, I think it's healthy to be occasionally confronted by a film rather than be fed pablum ad nauseum.

  • Anyone have any Recommendations?   14 years 10 weeks ago

    A man after my own heart: I love one-volume histories of the world; I have several. I've read the Roberts twice (no bull). Isn't the Durants' a multi-volume, or did they do a boiled-down version too? I was sorely tempted by a re-release of Van Loon as I was browsing a bookshop the other day. Also, I'd like to get hold of H.G.Wells's OUTLINE OF HISTORY one day (he wrote two: a long and a short; I've read the short).

  • movies with good dance scenes..   14 years 10 weeks ago

    nope. What sort of movie is it?

  • movies everyone else seemed to like but I didn't...   14 years 10 weeks ago

    Austin Powers I disliked for the stupid humor. Die Hard, Aliens and Reservoir Dogs were all problems because I couldn't stomach the violence.

  • Some I tried to read but haven't, yet, finished   14 years 10 weeks ago

    I, too have been in reading ruts, and have some recommendations that have worked for me...

    1. Read the genre fiction you like. There were times i couldn't read a good novel to save my life, but a detective story-- that i could do, and pretty soon I'm up to reading literature again.

    2. If you can't read genre fiction, try short stories. sometimes, they are all I can read. They usually can be read in one sitting, but have a lot of depth. The same is true for essays. In many ways they are more interesting that longer pieces.

    3. Once, when I couldn't read, I started reading plays. they are very fast reads, and you get to use your imagination a lot. Warning, though. I then became a theatre major, thereby ruining my chances of gainful employment in my field..

    Good Luck.

  • Classical Music And The Movies (With Sound)   14 years 10 weeks ago

    Thanks for these moments. I don't have much time right now, but I'll add them to the list later.

  • Overrated Movies - the first installment   14 years 10 weeks ago

    Well-

    #1 I guess I agree with everyone-- movies are meant to be emotionally manipulative. I've directed a lot of live theatre, and one actually has to think a lot about how to get the reaction you want out of the audience. -- and I've used a lot of music to do it. BUT, the movies we seem to criticize for being emotionally manipulative are those ones where we can percieve that we're being manipulated, and that makes us feel used and like we are being intellectually underestimated

    #2 Philedelphia probably was one of the first "mainstream" gay film, but it had little to do with being gay and everything to do with being discriminated against. In that, it is to me very similar to Lillian Hellman's The Children's Hour, in which two spinster school teachers lose their livlihood and really their whole lives after being accused of being lesbians. Again, this movie is really about something other than lesbianism, it is about the power of lies. I think that a great breakthrough would have been for such a mainstream actor as Tom Hanks to play a gay love scene, but it was too soon.

    3.I think I'm the only person who enjoyed Titanic. I didn't see it in the theatre because it was so popular I felt sure it was awful. I saw it a few months ago expecting the worst, and liked it. Their are some horrible parts, but all in all I found it much better than I expected it to be. I guess if your expecting horrible, OK seems pretty good.

  • Jojo's Top Ten Musicals   14 years 10 weeks ago

    I usually believe the transition from stage to film ruins a work; however, Cabaret actually improved upon it, chopping out a few of the weakest songs and adding a few classics such as Money. Additionally, Fosse knew how to direct a musical like few could - very kinetic.

    From your wording, it sounds as if you haven't seen the film yet. Am I correct? If so, I strongly urge you to check it out. Cabaret is Fosse's best.

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs