Words, Music & Screen
Discussions and Reviews by Thomas Itty
Welcome to my blog!
I used to have a blog that wrote on quite regularly but when life got busier, I discontinued it. Often times after reading a book, listening to an album, or watching a movie or TV show I've felt the urge to write about it. I sometimes post on Facebook — but that feels like I'm writing only for a few people. So let me try again with the launch of this new blog. I'm still the same, busy guy I've always been so I'm not sure how frequently I will post, but I will try. No promises.
If you want, you can send your comments to me using the form.
Thanks for reading.
August 12, 2020
MOVIE REVIEW & DISCUSSION — SEPTEMBER 13, 2020
MOVIES YOU MAY HAVE MISSED...
Directed by Tom Tykwer
"The International" is a very watchable film. Clive Owen is great as an Interpol agent and Watts plays her (limited) part well. However, if you want character depth and romance in your movies, then this one isn't for you. It is, however, a well-done, intelligent thriller with a good cast, great locations, gritty action, good dialog, and one very memorable action sequence at the Guggenheim museum. Louis Salinger (Clive Owen) is an Interpol agent who is on the trail of IBBC (International Bank of Business and Credit), a bank that he suspects is more than just a financial institution...
MOVIE REVIEW & DISCUSSION — SEPTEMBER 6, 2020
MOVIES YOU MAY HAVE MISSED...
THE DRIVER: A 70s GENRE FILM
Written & Directed by Walter Hill
"The Driver," released in 1978, is a typical genre film of the neo-noir crime thriller kind. It is as "genre" and generic as it can be... including dispensing with actual names for its characters and sparing them of any real detail. Instead, they are just symbols of what they do. So, Ryan O'Neal is The Driver, Bruce Dern is The Detective, Isabelle Adjani is The Player, Ronee Blakley is The Connection, and so on... The story of the movie is firmly in the neo-noir crime genre. What really makes the movie, though, are the three amazing car chases and driving sequences in it.
BOOK REVIEW & DISCUSSION — AUGUST 31, 2020
SPIRITUALITY, RELIGION & SELF-REALIZATION
AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF A YOGI
by Padmahansa Yogananda
"Autobiography of a Yogi" is an important book, especially if you are interested in Indian philosophy, religion, spirituality and yoga. Yogananda was one of the first people to bring yoga and Indian spirituality to the West. The book conveys the passion he has for his spiritual path, his inherent goodness and they joy he feels in sharing his knowledge with others.
I think Yogananda wrote the book with some specific goals in mind:
BOOK REVIEW — AUGUST 20, 2020
THE DEEP BLUE GOODBYE:
HELLO TRAVIS McGEE!
by John D. MacDonald
“The Deep Blue Good-Bye,” is the first book in the series and a reader's introduction to Travis McGee. JDM wastes no time in getting us fully acquainted with him. The third line of the book gives us his address “Slip F-18, Bahia Mar, Lauderdale, Florida.” To many lovers of mystery fiction, it is the second most recognizable fictional address — after 221B Baker St., London, U.K. McGee lives aboard the Busted Flush, a houseboat that he won in a poker game from a millionaire.
ALBUM REVIEW — AUGUST 15, 2020
FROM BLOOD ON THE TRACKS TO ROUGH AND ROWDY WAYS
by Bob Dylan
To me, “Rough And Rowdy Ways," released in the summer of 2020 by a 79-year-old Bob Dylan, is the best-case, natural progression of the person who wrote the songs on the remarkable “Blood On The Tracks” album in 1975. He still has the same unmistakable and unique talent for creating a catchy melody and stringing clever lines together to make songs with deep meaning... songs that tap into the current zeitgeist.
BOOK REVIEW — AUGUST 12, 2020
A PRIVATE CATHEDRAL
by James Lee Burke
The latest Dave Robicheaux novel and the 23rd in the series by James Lee Burke, who I consider the best living writer of noir fiction today. Dave and Clete get caught up in the lives of feuding mafia families. A satisfying mix of crime, romance, mythology, horror, and fantasy fiction.