Tuesday, February 1st, 2022 at 7:17 pm
We did it folks! We survived another crazy year, that had a few high moments as well as a few not so great moments. We were back in theaters (sort of), and then Omnicron variant hit, and we are still in theaters, although perhaps with a little hesitation. With my handy A-List status at my local AMC theater, I was able to increase the number of new movies I saw in 2021 to 53 (I hit 42 in 2020). What did I learn this year? Well, I missed the theater experience, thankfully I had a great experience with one of the movies in my top ten list. Streaming continues to be a dominant force; some movies don’t necessarily need to be seen on a big screen, but still plenty new releases were enhanced by going to the theaters again. For 2020, I got a little crazy and added a +1 to my Top Ten list, because I had a hard time with picking the movie to grab that #10 spot. It did happen again this year, so I just wanted to give a quick shout-out to my honorable mention, Mortal Kombat. It finally gave us the R-rated version with all of the violence and gore, with a story that was lacking at many angles, but not all movies need to be Oscar winners. So with no further delay, let’s get to my Top Ten Movies of 2021.
Today would have been the 81st birthday of Phil Ochs, the 1960s protest/folk singer who in many ways still stands as one of the most urgent, intelligent, and political spokesman of his generation, and who probably would have gotten a lot more adoration and respect if he hadn’t lived under the shadow of his musical cohort Bob Dylan. 2021 also marks the 45th anniversary of the tragic death of Ochs, who died by hanging himself at his sister’s house in Far Rockaway, New York in April 1976. But it is Ochs’s life that is going to get the spotlight treatment here, and with overdue good measure.
Today would have been the 75th birthday of the late Doug Kenney, who was possibly the funniest American satirist of all time, most remembered as the original editor and co-founder of National Lampoon magazine and co-writer on Animal House and for doing the same zany duty plus producing the film Caddyshack, two films which remain for many people, some of the funniest comedy films of all time.
Wednesday, December 8th, 2021 at 10:13 am
Sorry for the last minute post here, folks. I know I am not giving you a lot of time prior to the holidays to grab any of these treasures, but I only have the excuse of…well, nothing. I have been forgetful of late. Therefore, please accept my apologies and I hope you find something in this list for the D&D player(s) in your life.
Here’s the 2021 Holiday Gift Guide: Dungeons & Dragons Edition.
So this is the “new normal?” Or is it a return to the “old normal?” Either way, regardless of how you spent this past year, regardless of your thoughts on the world, politics, and economics of the world, furrowing your eyebrows at this or that or embracing all the necessary and arguably unnecessary changes in the world, one needs a constant personal and universal soundtrack to keep going, to keep sane, to keep grounded and inspired. As the newest round of the holiday season gets ready to dawn upon us, music not only acts as the perfect and always obvious choices for even the most discriminating of tastes, but also something that brings much-needed relief and communion to end another challenging year and brace everyone for what lies ahead in 2022. So as always, here’s my picks for some of the sonic highlights released this year, spanning all genres and tastes.