Yet Another Journal

Nostalgia, DVDs, old movies, television, OTR, fandom, good news and bad, picks, pans,
cute budgie stories, cute terrier stories, and anything else I can think of.

 Contact me at theyoungfamily (at) earthlink (dot) net

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» Monday, February 19, 2007
Coupons and B-Movie Matinee
Was out for a few hours today using the two Michael's 50 percent off coupons. James had bought me a largish cutting plier for Christmas, but it didn't cut well at the tips, which is what I wanted it for. So I picked a new one up at Michael's with one coupon and used the other on a new black/white Painty marker. Found a deal on a big frame for a couple of airplane prints James has—60 percent off!—so got one.

Also stopped by Border's to get the February issue of the British Country Living and by MicroCenter to buy a new mouse. While I was there I perused their bin of cheap DVDs. For $2, I got four old B-movies, including two Mr. Wongs (with Boris Karloff in the title role), Mr. Moto's Last Warning and "The Shadow" film International Crime.

International Crime is a B-movie in every sense of the word. It has little to do with The Shadow radio series except the main character is named Lamont Cranston and there is a Commissioner Weston and a "Shrevy" the cab driver, who is called "Moe" in this outing. "Margo Lane" is now "Phoebe Lane," the daughter of the publisher of the newspaper at which Lamont Cranston works who's tired of "sob stories" and wants to report some "romance and adventure," so the editor saddles Lamont, who does a crime gossip column for the newspaper's radio station, with her. The rest is a typical 30s crime plot with Cranston (who doesn't "cloud men's minds") trying to outwit the police commissioner and find out who blew up a safe. Phoebe, unlike the savvy but always stalked Margo, is basically comic relief.

Mr. Moto's Last Warning is an interesting entry in the Moto series. Although today people blanch at a non-Asian playing an Asian, Peter Lorre doesn't insult the race as black actors were forced to do with their roles. Moto is clever and resourceful and knows martial arts. George Sanders, of course, is one of the bad guys, working with a ventriloquist whose act covers up that they are planning to set off mines as the French fleet comes through the Suez canal and then blame it on the British, thereby starting a war. Moto is helped near the end by the very epitome of an upper-class British twit by the name of Rollo, who looks a lot like a young Edward Herrmann, but he can't save the British spy—played by John Carradine in a really poor fake beard!—who dies, having been discovered, in a diving bell with no oxygen (this was pretty grim for a 1939 film and made all my claustrophobic alarms go off).

I also finished and put up the sign for the door on the "Christmas closet." This has various holiday symbols at the top and at the bottom shows a little sailboat heading for shore where there is a lighthouse and cabin. I named it after my holiday blog, "Holiday Harbor," which seems appropriate for all the things berthed there, including the Valentine decorations, which I took down today. Will enjoy the winter things while it lasts...which isn't long because it's supposed to be in the 60s this week.

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