Congress is a mess. Another mass shooting in the U.S. in of all places, Maine. Another war between Israel and Palestine once again as there’s no real winners. Yeah, humanity is doing great. It’s a shame that everyone couldn’t get along and be rational as we do live in an irrational world. It’s becoming more common place lately as I try to just make sense of everything while preferring to be home. Yet, there has been things at home that has been challenging as a major change has happened for my mother as a dry cleaner that she did alterations for that is across from the neighborhood I lived has finally closed after more than 30 years. It was abrupt as I was just doing another routine dropoff/pick-up when I saw the sign as it had more to do with finances and stuff. The boss runs two dry cleaners and it’s become too much to deal with as he made the decision to close 2 Kings Cleaners in Smyrna though the other cleaners he has in Royal Cleaners just a few minutes from my neighborhood is still there. My mother still does alterations as we’re not hurting for money but other things did happen as my sister lost her job months after she got it because the company closed.
A lot of these things happen though I’m confident that my sister will get a new job yet a lot of these changes did finally became the push of something my mother and I have been wanting to do since the end of last year. After nearly 40 years of living with a format that I’m sure many once lived through. We finally cut the cable for good. Ever since the pandemic, the cable bill had been rising and rising and with streaming becoming more affordable. I realized that we’re still latched on towards something has become a financial burden but also a format that is reaching its expiration date. It started off cutting cable channels but the cable bill was still expensive as I had films on my DVR but eventually I ended up deleting everything because I had no time and it was too much of a hassle. Eventually, we began to watch less and less channels on cable and then with what is happening with my sister and the end of 2 Kings Cleaners was the push. My brother-in-law disconnected the cable boxes and grabbed the remotes. We dropped them off at Spectrum and we got a major reduction in our cable bill.
Finally, one less thing to deal with though it was a format that was once beloved by everyone but its time had come. Still, not everything in the streaming world is perfect as there’s still a lot of films and TV shows that remain lost and need to be found. Even as there’s a lot of price hiking and all sorts of dumb shit that is making things difficult with people not able to catch up with the world of streaming but are also stuck in the world of cable that is hurting them. Netflix has been difficult in taking down password sharing as the only reason my mother and I have is because of my sister but she’s having her own issues as we still couldn’t watch Netflix (whenever we want to watch something) on our smart TVs including a new one that my mother got because the TV she had been using since the 2010s went to shit. Right now, we’re just hoping for things to get better as my mother is currently binging on some TV show on YouTube that she couldn’t stop watching as she at least has something to watch. Plus, there’s still the local channels and I have access to TNT and TBS that does allow me to watch AEW. The TCM app unfortunately is shit as I couldn’t watch anything as I deleted it. I’m trying to keep my options open and hopefully do more in the next year. Even as I’ve decided to take on a project that is in the planning stages that is going to be more important than anything I have ever done. In the month of October 2023, I saw a total of 29 films in16 first-timers and 13 re-watches with four of those first-timers being films/limited TV series directed by women as part of the 52 Films by Women pledge. An improvement from last month as there was a number of good films I saw including one of the highlights of the month in my Blind Spot film in Tetsuo: The Iron Man. Here is the top 10 first-timers that I saw for October 2023:
1. Infinity Pool 2. Saint Maud 3. Prey 4. The Damned 5. Yes, God, Yes 6. Once Upon a Studio 7. The Love Witch 8. Angelica 9. Dream Work 10. The Witches Monthly Mini-Reviews/What Else I’m Watching
Master and Apprentice: A Special Look at Ahsoka This special from Disney+ served as a preview of sorts to Ahsoka yet it is really about the idea of master and apprentice. Especially in the mentor-student relationship between George Lucas and Dave Filoni as the latter has managed to do a lot with the Star Wars franchise in creating shows and new characters that have managed to connect with an audience. Even as he would use the theme of master-apprentice into Ahsoka as it relates not just Ahsoka being a mentor for Sabine Wren but also Ahsoka being an apprentice to her master in Anakin Skywalker who was Obi-Wan Kenobi’s apprentice as his master was Qui-Gon Jin. It showcases how this mentorship would translate into the story and why it continues to be relevant in the franchise.
This short film that is written and co-starring current AEW wrestler Ryan Nemeth that also stars his older brother Nick (aka Dolph Ziggler) and Anna Lore is this strange yet absurdist comedy about a guy who introduces his girlfriend to his family. It is there she discovers something about them and the result is funny. Especially as it shows the Nemeth brothers to be natural comedy actors as it shows they can do a lot outside of the world of pro wrestling as it’s worth seeking out for fans of the brothers.
This documentary made with the support of Pink Floyd revolves around the annular solar eclipse where fans of the band are given a chance to travel to a remote area in Australia to see this event. It showcases a fan base all coming together for this event as well as sharing their love for the band and their classic album Dark Side of the Moon which turned 50 earlier this year. For anyone that likes Floyd should see this but it really appeals to those interested in science and astronomy as they should see this once-in-a-lifetime event.
Dream Work Peter Tscherkassky has become a favorite of mine whenever a short film of his appears on MUBI. He is the master of using found footage and taking footage from other films and absolutely fuck them up in the best possible way. This short is no different as it revolves around a woman having a nightmare as it relates to bad relationships. Anyone familiar with Tscherkassky’s work will know what to expect in terms of its manic editing style and deconstructing imagery.
Once Upon a Studio In celebration of Walt Disney Studios and Disney Animation Studios, Dan Abraham and Trent Correy create this short that appeared on ABC and later Disney+ as it revolves around a reunion of nearly every Disney animated character from its shorts and feature films including the upcoming film Wish. The mixture of animation and live-action at Disney Animation Studios where nearly every character appears for this photoshoot as it include some archival voice work from Robin Williams as the Genie. The short opens with an appearance from the legendary animator Burny Mattinson who talks to an intern as it marks his final appearance in film as the short is dedicated to him as it’s a must-watch for anyone that loves Disney.
Through My Window I don’t understand why I can’t get access to Netflix much of the time to see new shorts by Wes Anderson yet I somehow get access to Netflix one late night to see this Spanish film starring Clara Galle whom I know from a Sebastian Yatra music video that my mother and niece like to watch a lot on YouTube. I don’t understand why there’s certain films/shows that Netflix creates that appeals to a certain audience such as shit like those Kissing Booth movies as this is the equivalent to it but set in Spain as it revolves around a young student who falls for her new neighbor and they fall in love despite the disapproval of his parents. There’s also a lot of jealousy and some badly shot sex scenes that really don’t bring anything to anyone that would watch films for the sex scenes. It is really on the level of those 365 Days films from Netflix except not as gratuitous yet they’re both boring and awful as fuck as I am aware there’s a sequel to this film and another one that is coming.
Yes, God, Yes When it comes to watching films or shows on TUBI, I usually don’t watch anything I haven’t seen before but for some reason late one night. I ended up watching this film out of curiosity as it stars Natalia Dyer as this Catholic high school student who questions her fascination towards sex and masturbation and ponders if she is going to Hell. As a coming-of-age comedy, this film is an absolute gem to discover as it is really about a young woman just finding herself and having a crush on a counselor during a retreat with other students as the film also features a wonderful supporting performance from Timothy Simon as the school priest who also runs this retreat with a secret of his own as he is a sympathetic character. Something I wouldn’t expect from Simon who is known mainly as the asshole from Veep as this was a smart and funny film.
Ahsoka (season 1 finale) When it comes to Star Wars in its film department, it worries me as I’ve learned that they’re thinking of getting Shawn Levy to helm a film and that is going to fucking suck due to the fact that his films range from mediocre to fucking shit. Thank goodness that Disney has chosen not to interfere too much with the TV shows as Dave Filoni has become everything George Lucas wished he could be had he not involved himself with business and other creative blunders. The season finale for the series isn’t just this great finale in which a lot happens as well as a setup for what is to come for the New Republic with this old threat in Grand Admiral Thrawn. It’s also in the fact that Ezra gets to go home with Sabine finally displaying her knowledge of the Force and Ahsoka getting a great showdown with Morgan Elsbeth. It is a great finale with what I think has one of the best endings to an episode ever. I got emotional for this final shot as it plays into Ahsoka’s master who seems to finally be at peace having gone through so much of his own fear, anger, and conflict from within only to later redeem himself and now can watch with ease at his apprentice adjusting to her new situation.
Loki (season 2, episodes 1-4) Marvel has been going through a rough stage this year with the disappointing reactions to both Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania and Secret Invasion while there’s also been some major changes from within while the upcoming film in The Marvels hasn’t been getting a lot of buzz with some believing it will be a disappointment. So there was a lot to worry as it relates to the second season of this series but fortunately, that hasn’t happened. Four episodes in and already it’s gotten quite while with a cliffhanger ending for its most recent episode as there is no clue on what will happen next. Yet, there is a lot going on as it relates to the TVA crumbling as they couldn’t contain the growth of the multiverse with Loki doing what he can to help as he would mature while his friendship with Mobius has gotten strong. Ke Huy Quan’s performance as O.B. is an absolute delight as he lights up every scene he’s in while characters in Hunter B-15 and Casey are not only given more to do but also show some depth while Sylvie is going through her own existential crisis. It’s been really strong lately as I hope the next two episodes deliver with a third season coming.
Werewolf by Night in Color Having seen this short film from Marvel last year as I thought it was one of the best things they’ve done. This new version which was presented in color by Michael Giacchino is a worthy companion piece as it echoes the look of 1960s Hammer Films from Britain while it also does a lot to play into the gore and violence. While the original black-and-white version is the superior version in my opinion. I do like this version as I do hope they do something with Jack Russell/Werewolf by Night and Elsa Bloodstone in future projects.
Wrestling Match of the Month: Will Ospreay vs. “Speedball” Mike Bailey – Impact Wrestling Bound for Glory 2023 – 10/21/23
If there’s a front-runner for wrestler of the year of 2023, it’s Will Ospreay. He’s been delivering on great matches all year as he is pretty much at the top of his game as he would do matches whether in stadiums in the U.K. or at a small indie show in London the night before. Here at the annual Bound for Glory event for Impact Wrestling/TNA, a dream-match between Ospreay and one of the hottest high-flyers in “Speedball” Mike Bailey who has proven to become someone that is destined for the big leagues. Both men have put a lot into this match as Bailey looked great in defeat while it only adds a lot of where Ospreay could go next year as his contract with New Japan Pro Wrestling is set to expire making him the hottest free agent in 2024.
Top 10 Re-Watches
1. Alien 2. Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story 3. Cruella 4. It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown 5. Werewolf by Night 6. Toy Story of Terror! 7. Trick or Treat 8. Lonesome Ghosts 9. Breathless 10. The Rowdy Girls Well, that is all for October 2023. Next month, I will definitely review new releases in Priscilla and The Marvels while I maybe might do Killers of the Flower Moon as well as The Irishman. Other than some stuff on various streaming services, I’m still unsure what film to pick as the penultimate Blind Spot for November while I’m also not finished with the list for next year’s Blind Spot Series. Before everyone goes out trick or treating and eating candy, let’s express our condolences to those who have passed away this month in Matthew Perry, Richard Roundtree, Suzanne Sommers, musician Aaron Spears, Richard Moll, Steve Riley of L.A. Guns, baseball legend Tom Walker, musician Gregg Hutton, Joan Evans, Betsy Rawls, art director Osvaldo Desideri, film editor Steve Weisberg, Joanna Merlin, Piper Laurie, Lara Parker, Phyllis Coates, Mark Goddard, Brendan Malone, Henri Serre, Burt Young, filmmaker Terence Davies, Chicago Bears legend Dick Butkus, and those in recent events in Acapulco, Kazakhstan, Maine, and Israel-Gaza. Until then, this is thevoid99 signing off…
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