Binge-Watching Christmas Songs from the Stage and Screen

It’s that time of the year again. For some, it has already started. For others, it will be ushered in with Thanksgiving. It is time to play Christmas music: merrily, joyously, incessantly. Growing up in my home, we had a rule that Christmas carols could not be played until after Santa Claus arrived at the end of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Nowadays, it seems we are pelted with them like soggy snowballs from the minute Tiny Tim climbs on the school bus in September. But who am I to be such a Scrooge when we are so close to Thanksgiving, even the curmudgeonly Theatre Guy’s heart grows a few sizes and he embraces the yuletide when it comes around. With that in mind (and heart), I thought I’d put together a collage of Christmas Caroling clips of songs from movies, television and stage musicals for all of us to celebrate the countdown to December 25th.  It’s guaranteed to put you in the mood for the season.  

Mind Hunter and Mindhunters: A Review of the Netflix Series

A few weeks ago, I was wandering around Barnes and Noble looking for some true crime books to read (I’ve been on a kick with this genre lately). I picked up a book on Jack the Ripper (a mind-shattering puzzle of a case that continues to fascinate me) and went to check out. The store cashier (also a true crime fanatic), asked me if I had read the book Mind Hunter: Inside the FBI’s Elite Serial Crime Unit. I had not. He proceeded to tell me about the book, and he also informed me of the new Netflix series called Mindhunters (without the space) that is based on the book, urging me to give both a try. Barnes and Noble, as well as Netflix, owe this guy a commission, for I am sold on both.

Murder on the Orient Express: Film Review

There has been a lot of bellyaching out there over the remake of Murder on the Orient Express, based on the 1934 Agatha Christie novel and gloriously filmed in 1974 with a cast of the highest pedigree, including Albert Finney, Lauren Bacall, Anthony Perkins, Ingrid Bergman, Sean Connery, Vanessa Redgrave, Jacqueline Bisset, John Gielgud, and Michael York.  The film follows Detective Hercule Poirot as he takes a trip aboard the titular luxury train only to encounter the mysterious murder of one of the train’s passengers. With such a top-notch cast and a fascinating story for its premise, the original film was a visual feast and one of Hollywood’s finer whodunits. The remake is a surprisingly well done, elegant and sumptuous to look at, directed with the eye of a true artist, and possessing some nifty performances that could give the original cast a run for their money. 

Kiss Me, Kate: Picking Our Fred/Petruchio

Yesterday, Roundabout Theatre Company announced that it would be reviving Kiss Me, Kate in February of 2019, starring Tony winner Kelli O’Hara is the role of the shrewish Lily/Kate. Though it is still quite a long way off, I thought it would be fun to speculate on possible Freds/Petruchios who would be fun to see opposite Ms. O’Hara. Here are my thoughts and I’d love to know any ideas you may have as well.