Adapt or Die


Adapting isn’t easy. Ask any movie producer (like any of us really could…) who has made a movie out of a popular novel, play, historical event or TV show. The combinations of what could go wrong, right, or just meh are endless. Clifford the Big Red Dog was an awesome collection of children’s books. The TV show was pretty good. The movie was… oh sweet hosanna would someone please think of the children! Then the oppoBuffysite happens with My Big Fat Greek Wedding. A very comical, memorable and popular movie; a very unfunny, unpopular and forgettable TV show (Even with most of the same cast!). Buffy the Vampire Slayer was just another popcorn movie. The TV show, a smash it. Star Trek established itself as an iconic powerhouse with lifelong fans for generations to come. But it’s first movie adaptation was one big snore. But then they saved themselves with a series of good to great movies to follow.

Anything can happen when adapting. And it’s not easy. How did you adapt from being a teenager to a 20-something? How about from making x-amount of dollars to y-amount of dollars per year? Or adapting to a new diet? The life as it was before is the TV show, or comic book. The life afterwards is the movie or the Broadway play. It’s a lot of work. Just ask anyone who’s gone through a dramatic change in his/her life.

Maybe it would be a whole lot easier if we approached it like a movie. You get to be your own producer, director and actor. You make it as good as you can. You’ll have many critics, but who cares? They’ve had to make their own adaptations, and chances are they’ve made some It’s Pat and Car 54 Where are You? movies themselves. But this… this change in life is yours. Make it wonderful.

Congratulations The Untouchables. This is your week.

BuffyAnd the Oscar goes to…
Best Actress: Julianne Moore as Dr. Eastman in The Fugitive.
Best Actor: Robert De Niro as Al Capone in The Untouchables. Admittedly, Sean Connery’s role is more memorable. But watch the movie again and I believe you’ll be most impressed by De Niro.
Best Quote: “I don’t care!” — Tommy Lee Jones as Deputy Marshal Samuel Gerard after Dr. Kimble shouts “I didn’t kill my wife!” I just love that scene.

Top 10 TV shows I thank God were never made into movies:

10. Three’s a Crowd It had John Ritter, but it was no Regal Beagle.
9. Bob Izumi’s Real Fishing Show  Hopefully they won’t make this movie “a possibility” (hyunh hyunh hyunh).
8. Another World — Soap operas. The second hand smoke of television. The bag-over-the-head-punch-in-the-face wet belly button lint of television. No need for movies here…
7. Danger Bay — Ah, the sweet stench of CBC television shows from the 80’s!
6. Here Comes Honey Boo Boo To quote Weird Al Yankovic in UHF (1989), “Here, I want you to take this crowbar and… just bash my head right in! Go ahead. Really. Please! Just BASH it right in!
5. Joanie Loves Chachi The disappointment could possibly be just as bad as that of the TV show itself.
4. TJ Hooker — The only reason this was ever watched was for the sake of seeing Heather Locklear. Trust me, it was neither William Shatner nor the big hair guy. The only way a movie adaptation could be enjoyed is by hate-watching.
3. Hee Haw As funny as dust balls under the couch.
2. Hee Haw Honeys Not quite as funny as Hee Haw.
1. The Jerry Springer Show No movie adaptation (thankfully), though Donald Trump’s campaign seems like the closest thing.

Movie of the Week

Oh to see the rich get grandly robbed!

00000 Italian JobWe love it. From Robin Hood to Danny Ocean’s team of 11, it’s always so interesting and fun to watch the burglars find a way to sneak in, take the money, and get away with it. And it’s all of those elements together that’s important. If it was a great sum of money that was being held by an organization helping poor people, it wouldn’t be so thrilling to watch. If the money was easily stolen, we wouldn’t be entertained. And if the burglars got caught and the movie ended, we’d be the ones feeling robbed.

Hollywood has no shortage of heist movies, and here are the greatest ones, in my humble opinion of course:

10. Heist (2001) — One of Gene Hackman’s lesser known movies. It’s a good one.

9/8. TIE: Ocean’s Twelve, Ocean’s Thirteen These ones aren’t as popular as the first one, but I still found them very entertaining.

00000 Italian Job7. Now You See Me (2013) — The burglars are magicians, which makes the heist all the more mysterious and clever.

6. Inside Man (2006) — You know how when you watch a heist movie and when you finally discover the biggest secret to how they did it and your mind is blown? I think this movie does it best.

5. The Sting (1973) — I’m sure on most lists like this, this one would come up as #1, and for good reason. It won best picture in 1974 and is a lot of fun to watch.

4. The Italian Job (2003) — I haven’t seen the original yet, but I’m guessing this one is much better. SO good.

3. Sneakers (1992) — If you liked Ocean’s 11, I think you’ll love this one. A lot of cool tech tricks and a really funny scene where a mission involves trying to get someone to say the word “passport.”

2. American Hustle (2013) —
There is so much I love about this movie. I’ll save it for another time…

1. Ocean’s Eleven (2001) — Yup, it’s my favourite one. I had no idea how things were coming together until the end. Loved every minute of it.

And my top heist movies that I haven’t seen yet, but hope to soon (let me know if you’d recommend any of these over the others):

Fast Five (2011) — Would you believe I haven’t see ANY of the Fast/Furious movies? I’ve heard this one is great.
True Romance (1993) — Quentin Tarantino is the reason I want to see this. The only reason. Hopefully it won’t disappoint.
City on Fire
(1987) — This is a Japanese movie with Chow Yun-Fat in it. Sounds good to me.
The Bank Job (2008) — Jason Statham! The dude was born to star in Heist movies.
The Town (2010) — Ben Affleck directs, so hopefully it’ll go the way of Argo (2012) for me. Jeremy Renner is also in it. I’ve heard good things.
Jackie Brown (1997) — Quentin Tarantino is the reason I want to see this. The only reason. Hopefully it won’t disappoint. Having deja vu here…
The Killing (1956) — This one keeps popping up to the surface for me. And get this: it has an 8.0 rating on IMDb and a 97% freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Impressive.
Thunderbolt and Lightfoot (1974) — A Clint Eastwood movie from the 70’s that also happens to star Jeff Bridges. I need no other reason to watch.

Congratulations The Italian Job. This is your week.

And the Oscar goes to…
00000 Italian JobBest Actress:
Other than Charlize, I’d say Christina Ricci deserves the recognition. She’s overshadowed in
Monster by Theron, but she does arguably her best work of her career in it.
Best Actor: Tom Hardy in Mad Max: Fury Road.
Best Quote:Goodnight, you princes of Maine, you kings of New England.” — Michael Caine as Dr. Larch in The Cider House Rules

I haven’t say much about Theron yet, so let me fix that and just say that she really is one of the absolute best actors out there today. Monster is disturbing, but if you can get past that you will see a performance like none other you’ve seen before. If you can’t get past that…sigh…I guess you can just take my word for it.

Thanks for the great movies Charlize. Please make more. Many more.

Listen here pilgrim

00000000clintThis week some of us witnessed a rather mild debate over who would win in a showdown between John Wayne and Clint Eastwood. And you know why that’s such a difficult one to call? Because these heroes seem to do everything right. John Wayne challenges four armed men on horses—and wins. Eastwood saves a man from a hanging by shooting the rope in two. If I had to pick a winner, I would predict it to be just like the Batman v Superman fight. A big, spectacular fight with one of them finally getting the edge, but just when you think it’s all over but the crying… they team up and face a big ugly monster.

It can be discouraging looking at these heroes. They can do no wrong. Tonight I watched The Peanuts Movie with Joy and the girls (There was a pile of kids outside playing 00000000clintbasketball. You think Luke would miss that for a computer animated movie?), and I thought about just how much I can relate to Charlie Brown. Throughout the entire movie everything he does turns to a steaming pile. And honestly, sometimes it feels like I can’t do anything right either.

  • I’ll spend hours on a project in my business that should have taken one.
  • I’ll pay off a big bill only to incur another one.
  • I’ll blame one of my kids for something their sibling did. Or, most often, something that I did.
  • I’ll decide to spend the extra money for quality, and whatever it is breaks down. Then I lose the receipt.
  • I’ll try to fix a problem and create ten more in the process.

The worst is when I let this stuff brew inside me. I think about these things over and over again for long periods of time. It just simmers. It’s only a matter of time before it’ll start boiling.

But tonight that ol’ blockhead inspired me. Not only was I cheering him on tonight like I did when I was a kid reading comics, but I was also revisited by those “Happiness is…” posters that were making their rounds in libraries, school classrooms, and kids’ bedrooms.

  • Happiness is five different crayons.
  • Happiness is a warm puppy.
  • Happiness is a stack of comic books.
  • Happiness is sharing a sandwich.
  • Happiness is coming home again.

I fail. I fail a lot. But so do you. And you—you reading this right now—if I know you, then I probably look at you as someone who is more together than I am. Better than I am. Yet you shake your head wondering how I could think that. Yes, I fail. But happiness is all around me. I’m not Clint Eastwood or John Wayne, but neither are they. They are Clinton Eastwood Jr. and Marion Mitchell Morrison, two men who I’m sure have lost a receipt at some point in their lives.

Congratulations The Good the Bad and the Ugly. This is your week.

And the Oscar goes to…

Best Actress: Natalie Wood as Debbie Edwards in The Searchers..

Best Actor: Leonardo DiCaprio as Calvin Candie in Django Unchained.

Best Quote:There are two kinds of people in the world, my friend: Those with a rope around the neck, and the people who have the job of doing the cutting.” — Eli Wallach as Tuco in The Good the Bad and the Ugly.


  • Happiness is making a stranger laugh.
  • Happiness is Mini-Wheats and coffee in bed.
  • Happiness is the first snowfall.
  • Happiness is familiar faces.
  • Happiness is writing whatever’s on your mind.

Movie of the Week

Pick your movie of the week: Westerns! (May 16-19/16)

May 13-19-16

Gotta love a good western, and I love all three of these. Which one should be our movie of the week?

The Searchers (1956)
A Civil War veteran embarks on a journey to rescue his niece from an Indian tribe.

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)
A bounty hunting scam joins two men in an uneasy alliance against a third in a race to find a fortune in gold buried in a remote cemetery.

Django Unchained (2012)
With the help of a German bounty hunter, a freed slave sets out to rescue his wife from a brutal Mississippi plantation owner.

Movie of the Week