New Releases 8/26

Moviesall that jazz
Blended
The Walking Dead season 4
Portlandia season 4
Haven season 4
Elementary season 2
The Musketeers season 1
Revenge season 3
Earth: The Sequel
Living With Cancer: Caring for the Caregiver
Trust Me
All That Jazz
Phantom
Jackpot

MusicJunto
Moonshine in the Trunk by Brad Paisley
Promise to Love by Kem
My Everything by Ariana Grande
Manipulator by Ty Segall
Junto by Basement Jaxx
Lost in Alphaville by The Rentals

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New Releases 8/19

Moviesamazing spider man 2
Sabotage
The Amazing Spider-Man 2
Fading Gigolo
Only Lovers Left Alive
Boardwalk Empire sesason 4
NCIS: Los Angeles season 5
The Mindy Project season 2
Parks and Recreation season 6
Once Upon a Time season 3
Revolution season 2
Secrets of the Dead: The Mona Lisa Mystery
Life is Strange

Musicanchor
Blacc Hollywood by Wiz Khalifa
Definitely Now by Liam Bailey
Space Invader by Ace Frehley
You Amaze Us by Selah
The Golden Echo by Kimbra
Musik, Die Schwer Zu Twerk by Electric Wurms
Anchor by Colton Dixon
Smokey & Friends by Smokey Robinson

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New Releases 8/12

Moviesmuppets most wanted
Muppets Most Wanted
The Railway Man
Locke
Low Winter Sun season 1
The Blacklist season 1
Frankie & Alice
Filth
Love Streams
Dancing in Jaffa

MusicI'm not bossy
Stronger by Tank
I’m Not Bossy, I’m the Boss by Sinead O’Connor
Rockabilly Riot! All Original by Brian Setzer
Testify by Caleb Johnson
Amid the Noise and Haste by Soja
Get Hurt by The Gaslight Anthem

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Staff Picks

Luther
Luther
A great BBC TV show about a troubled detective that follows his own moral code.
Pushin' Against a Stone
Pushin’ Against a Stone by Valerie June
A great singer combines blues, gospel, soul, folk, and pop into a wonderful album. Partly produced by Dan Auerbach of The Black Keys.

Jessie’s PicksHail to the Thief
Hail to the Thief by Radiohead
A great album that successfully blends the styles of the guitar-based Bends album and the experimental electronica Kid A album.
Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows
A great listen! Told through letters, there is a different narrator for each letter writer. Takes place on Guernsey Island during WWII. Some of the islanders form a book group in order to meet during Nazi occupation.

Kim’s PicksThe_Quatermass_Xperiment
The Quatermass Xperiment
The  movie that put Britain’s Hammer Studios on the international map.  A rocket that leaves earth with 3 passengers returns with only 1, and he’s mute.  Director Val Guest interspersed a handheld camera and locals to create an almost semi-documentary science fiction movie that prefigures The Blob and Alien.
Empires of the Sea
Empires of the Sea: the siege of Malta, the battle of Lepanto, and the contest for the center of the world by Roger Crowley
War at sea, siege on land (in Malta and Cyprus) as the Spanish-led West combats the Ottoman Empire for control of the Mediterranean in the 16th century.  It is so exciting that you will listen to the CD and read the book.

Melissa’s Pickscure
Cure by Robin Cook
Author is a former general physician who writes about mystery diagnoses that leave the reader on the edge of their seat!
cause of death
Cause of Death by Patricia Cornwell
The author is a former pathologist and writes detailed murder mysteries.

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New Releases 8/5

Moviesoculus
Need for Speed
Divergent
Bad Words
Oculus
God’s Not Dead
Last Tango in Halifax season 2
Californication season 7
Community season 5
The Trip to Bountiful
Bicycling With Moliere
More Than the Rainbow

Music
1000HP by Godsmackforever yours
Now 51
Now That’s What I Call Party Anthems vol. 2
Forever Yours by Smokie Norful
Don’t Wait Up for George by Shooter Jennings
The Empty Hearts by The Empty Hearts
They Want My Soul by Spoon

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The Movie Poster Myth

Ralph Stephenson’s “Posters and Credits” in Film Review 1971-72 is on a short list of literature suggesting that the golden age of movies was not the golden age of movie posters: “the fact remains that for many years the average film poster was unexciting and unoriginal, and nowadays it is an unrewarding experience to thumb through a glossy volume reproducing Hollywood’s poster images of the thirties.” As Stephenson realized, the pre-TV moviegoing audience was a captive one, hardly needing lures to attend the theater weekly.   Ads featuring star portraits (very ably rendered in fine color) contained little accompanying copy. When TV menaced film hegemony at mid-century, posters became filled with scenes and over-the-top blurbs.   They became more interesting—or sublime—and possessed of a panache altogether more entertaining than their forebears. The golden age of movie posters ran from about 1950 to the mid-70s. Examples from this period:

The Lost Continent (1951): “INCREDIBLE! Atomic powered sweep to a NEW World of Thrills!”

The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms (1953): “Prehistoric Sea-Giant Rages Against City! They Couldn’t Believe Their Eyes! They Couldn’t Escape the Terror! AND NEITHER WILL YOU!” + “Cast of Thousands. Over a Year in the Making!” + “The Sea’s Master-Beast Of The Ages Raging Up From The Bottom Of Time!” + “You’ll See It Tear A City Apart!”

manchurian candidate

Macabre (1958): “Any member of the audience is insured for $1000.00 against DEATH BY FRIGHT! during the performance of this terrifying picture!”

The Manchurian Candidate (1962): “If you come in five minutes after this picture begins, you won’t know what it’s all about! When you’ve seen it all, you’ll swear there’s never been anything like it!”

Point Blank (1967): “There are two kinds of people in his up-tight world: his victims and his women. And sometimes you can’t tell them apart.”

The Detective (1968): “An Adult Look at a Police Detective” + “You Killed a man before breakfast…You helped a teenage addict…You sent the wrong man to the electric chair…and at home…your wife is making love…to another man!”

A Man Called Horse (1970): “become an Indian warrior in the most electrifying ritual ever seen!”

dirty harry

The Vampire Lovers (1970): “IF YOU DARE…taste the deadly passion of the BLOOD NYMPHS!” + “CAUTION. Not for the mentally immature!”

The Abominable Dr. Phibes (1971): “Love means never having to say you’re ugly.”

Dirty Harry (1971): “Detective Harry Callahan. You don’t assign him to murder cases. You just turn him loose.”

The Stepmother (1972): “She forced her husband’s son to commit the ultimate sin!!” + “…it’s a family affair.”

Admittedly, some classic ads contained excellent artwork and even description—for newspaper reproduction. For example, inspecting The New York Times on microfilm reveals:

Sign of the Cross (1933): “A picture which will proudly lead all the entertainments the world has ever seen. Cecil B. DeMille’s Superb Road-Show Dramatic Spectacle.” + “Cecil B. DeMille’s The Sign of the Cross is a Paramount Picture. Paramount in Spectacle! Paramount in Appeal! Paramount in its Swift Action! Paramount in Technical Skill! With FOUR STARS. Fredric March, Elissa Landi, Claudette Colbert, Charles Laughton. Assisted by 7500 others.”

The Gunga Din (1939) ads were similarly full of hoopla, as were Arizona (1940), Jesse James (1939), High Sierra (1941), and Murder, My Sweet (1944).

In summary, rather than coffee table books extolling the 1930s as a golden age of film poster art, we need a comprehensive volume covering the best that was to come.

By Kim

 

References

Speed, F. Maurice, ed. Film Review 1971-72. 1971.

Borst, Ronald V. Graven Images: The Best of Horror, Fantasy, and Science Fiction Film Art. 1992.

Vance, Malcolm. The Movie Ad Book. 1981.

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New Releases 7/29

Moviesfrench minister
Noah
The Other Woman
Finding Vivian Maier
It Felt Like Love
On My Way
The French Minister
The Amazing Catfish
Shark Week: Predator of the Deep
Secret State

Musicsong reader
Savages by Theory of a Deadman
The Breeze: An Appreciation of JJ Cale by Eric Clapton
Hypnotic Eye by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
A Life Worth Living by Marc Broussard
Beck Song Reader by various
Behind the Veil by William Close & The Earth Harp Collective

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New Audiobooks

* means it is also available on Playaway
** means it is only on Playaway at Chester County Library
Fiction
The 1st Victim by Tami Hoagburial rites
Bridge to Haven by Francine Rivers
Burial Rites: a novel by Hannah Kent *
The Cursed by Heather Graham
Death of a Nightingale by Lene Kaaberbol and Agnete Friis
The Directive: a novel by Matthew Quirk
The Dragon Business by Kevin J. Anderson
Field of Prey by John Sandford
Forget Me Not by Fern Michaels**dragon business
Ghost Ship: a novel from the NUMA files by Clive Cussler and Graham Brown
The Hidden Child by Camilla Läckberg
The House Girl by Tara Conklin
The Keeper: a novel by John Lescroart
Keep Quiet by Lisa Scottoline*
The Kill Switch by James Rollins and Grant Blackwood
The Kraken Project by Douglas Preston
The Martian: a novel by Andy Weirmillion ways to die in the west
Night Diver by Elizabeth Lowell
Raisins and Almonds: a Phyrne Fisher mystery by Kerry Greenwood
Resistant by Michael Palmer
Seth MacFarlane’s A Million Ways to Die in the West: a novel by Seth MacFarlane**
Sixth Grave on the Edge by Darynda Jones
The Skin Collector: a Lincoln Rhyme novel by Jeffery Deaver
Skin Game: a novel of the Dresden files by Jim Butcherskin game
The Son by Jo Nesbo*
The Spook Lights Affair: a Carpenter and Quincannon mystery by Marcia Muller and Bill Pronzini
Starfire by Dale Brown
Suspicion by Joseph Finder
Three Jack Reacher novellas: Deep down, Second son & High heat by Lee Child**
Unlucky 13 by James Patterson & Maxine Paetrowalking on water
Unspoken by Dee Henderson
Walking on Water by Richard Paul Evans
When We Met by Susan Mallery

Nonfiction

Ask Deepak About Meditation and Higher Consciousness by Deepak Chopra
E.E. Cummings: a life by Susan Cheevere. e. cummings
History Decoded: the ten greatest conspiracies of all time by Brad Meltzer with Keith Ferrell
American chronicles: World War I by NPR
Love Life by Rob Lowe
Talk Like TED: the 9 public-speaking secrets of the world’s top minds by Carmine Gallo
The Women of Duck Commander: surprising insights from the women behind the beards about what makes this family work by Kay Robertson et alyou must remember this
You Can Begin Again: no matter what, it’s never too late by Joyce Meyer **
You Must Remember This: life and style in Hollywood’s Golden Age by Robert J. Wagner with Scott Eyman

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New Releases 7/22

Moviesheaven is for real
The Single Moms Club
Cesar Chavez
Heaven is For Real
Transcendence
Dalziel & Pascoe season 10
Blue Ruin
Insomnia

Music
trouble in paradise
Nobody’s Smiling by Common
5 Seconds of Summer by 5 Seconds of Summer
Trouble in Paradise by La Roux
In Technicolor by Jesse McCartney

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Under the Skin (2014)

New on DVD is Jonathan Glazer’s Under the Skin, as strange and unsettling a film as you will ever see. The visuals are nothing short of astounding, even gasp-inducing. Mica Levi’s music score will give you the creeps.

The story: A seductive young woman (Scarlett Johansson) drives a vanunder the skin around Glasgow, giving lifts to men she determines won’t be immediately missed. Her intention: luring them into an old house where they are…consumed? By the end, she (it?) seems to understand something about humans, might be acquiring empathy, could be having second thoughts about her life and mission. (Is she marooned on Earth? Is she some sort of queen “handled” by the men on motorcycles?) Glazer said of his film, “The body-soul thing, that paradox—the pleasure of consciousness and life and being in a body, and also how troubling it is and mystifying—is key in the film.”

In his April review, critic Richard Roeper called Under the Skin “by far the most memorable movie of the first few months of 2014. It’s as if the script for Species* had landed on Stanley Kubrick’s desk and he had decided to transform it into a stark mood piece that drills into your psyche and will stay there forever….I need to see this film again.” The movie mixes naturalism with the surreal, or as Jonathan Romney put it, its “nightmare mode.” The Huffington Post called it “a dark nightmare of images and sound, played out with perhaps the movies’ most alluring female star.”

Like the films of David Lynch, Under the Skin was not given a wide release, playing almost exclusively in one big city “art house.” In Philadelphia it was the Ritz East. Are suburbanites considered too plebeian for such movies? Is film distribution an imperfect science? Maybe it’s the R rating—exhibitors can’t make as much money from a film teens can’t see as from Captain America or Spider-Man.

Under the Skin is certainly not for all tastes. Like 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), to which it has been likened in its style and ambiguity, it will bore and perplex some while others will be entranced. (The ticket seller at the Ritz East told my party that older people think it’s “too weird” while young audiences “love it.”) Even if the filmmakers had nothing profound to say, the film nevertheless inspires a multitude of questions about humanity and in that sense is wholly rewarding.   Slate.com was on target, concluding that “the film is bristling with ideas.”

This is only the third feature film from director Glazer. Like Under the Skin, Birth (2004), with Nicole Kidman, was not much seen . On the other hand, Sexy Beast (2000), a gangster saga with Ben Kingsley and Ray Winstone, is held in high regard.

*Parallels with Species go only so far. In that 1995 film a message from space provided DNA sequencing that allowed humanity to create an alien whose goal they soon realize is to spawn deadly offspring. Species was an action film with its own debt to Them! , Alien, The Terminator and any film with chase and combat sequences in the Los Angeles sewers.

 

By Kim

References

Jake Coyle. “Scarlett Johansson on Polarizing ‘Under the Skin’: ‘I Never Experienced Anything Like That’.” www.huffingtonpost (4/3/2014).

Dan Kois. “Maneater.” www.slate.com (6/17/2014).

Richard Roeper, Chicago Sun-Times, April 12, 2014.

Jonathan Romney, “Unearthly Stranger,” Sight & Sound (April 2014): 22-24, 26-27.

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