LikeTelevision Blog

Thursday, May 29, 2008

The Dukakian Tank Test

While the old standby litmus test for choosing your guy (who would you have a beer with?) is still a good one, I thought I'd add another factor in making the decision. The Dukakian Tank Test. Now I know there will be only one Democrat left once Al Gore counts the votes in Florida, but the tank test was more fun with three choices. And off we go, with Tiger Joe.

1) Barack Obama 2) John McCain and 3) Hilary Clinton.

wow - tough, tough call. I think I'm going with the Spinach Party.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Remember Those Who Sacrificed

Memorial Day is a day we remember those who sacrificed their lives for the freedoms we enjoy today. So, take some time to remember, and feels thanks. And after that, yes by all means, throw a burger on the grill and enjoy the annual Bar-B-Que. (reminds me of this trailer). There's lots of memorial day related content - from World War One or Two movies to a search for soldier to Andy Griffith to Richard Pryor.

There's also a bunch of noteworthy birthdays today, May 26. John Wayne was born May 26, 1907. Jay Silverheels, better known as Tonto was born May 26, 1912. The great Peggy Lee was born May 26, 1920. Click the Peggy Lee for a killer rendition of Why Don't You Do Right?" featuring the legendary Benny Goodman on Clarinet. Wow, does he rock! And finally, one of my favorite actors has the 100th anniversary of his birth, Robert Morley was born May 26, 1908. Check him out in Theater of Blood with Vincent Price. (And it's Uncle Vinnie's birthday tomorrow. Small world).

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

More New Downloads

Added a bunch of movie and TV download honey to the pot on Monday, tweaked & logged the info to the database on Tuesday, and on Wednesday, the servers were updated and we can tell you about. Woo Woo. Here's a short list of the new downloads. The Trial starring Anthony Perkins and directed by Orson Welles. A bizarre screen adaptation of the Frank Kafka classic novel, The Trial. It's the story of this guy named Joseph K who is accused of doing something wrong, but he has no understanding what he is guilty of.

Next up, another film based on literature, in this case, a short story by Richard Connell called The Most Dangerous Game. The movie stars Leslie Banks, Joel McCrea, and Fay Wray. A ships is detroyed on a hidden reef and the crew and passengers must go to a tiny island. Once there, they learn the owner is an acclaimed hunter, bored with animals, he now enjoys hunting people.

Finally, we also added Alfred Hitchcock's movie Secret Agent to the video download library. The 1936 B&W espionage film stars Peter Lorre and John Geilgud. Made before World War II, it offers an interesting view of the geo-political world, and the cloak and dagger activities in Europe before the outbreak of global war.

Monday, May 19, 2008

T.E. Lawrence's Motorcycle Accident

On May 19, 1935, T.E. Lawrence, an avid biker who favored Brough Superior bikes, died in a motorcycle accident near his cottage in Dorset. He was just 46 years old, and he died as he swerved to avoid hitting 2 boys on bicycles, lost control and went over the handlebars. Check out this newsreel, with some brief footage of T.E. Lawrence, better known as Lawrence of Arabia.

If you'd like to learn more about T.E. Lawrence, check out wikipedia's extensive entry, or better still, read one of his books, The Seven Pillars of Wisdom. This book was edited by his friend, George Bernard Shaw. And David Lean's movie, Lawrence of Arabia is a great film, an amazing film, one of the best but not the best source to learn about the man.

Also of note today, May 19 - a young girl named Janet Gaynor cleaned up on the first Oscar night, winning three Academy Awards in one evening, for her role in A Star is Born.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Peak Behind the Curtain

Lots of activity behind the scenes as hit the summer of 2008. We've been busy getting new video workstations installed and are very happy with the quality. Using a few striped SATA II drives, we are able to write and read video data uncompressed for standard NTSC tv size. Really looks great. We also made a few new lead-ins, that are now populated across the server farms. Check out a movie or Classic TV Show or Cartoon and look for them.

Also just updated. A few new episodes of The Office, including last night's terrific episode - Goodbye Toby. Will Jim propose to Pam? It sure looks like it. He made sure the party had fireworks.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Israel Celebrates 60th Birthday

On May 14, 1948 David Ben-Gurion proclaims the new state of Israel. Hours later, five Arab countries attacked. Check out this interesting newsreel of the historic event as Israel celebrates its 60th birthday today, May 14, 2008.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Berlin May 12, 1949

On May 12th, 1949 the blockade of Berlin finally came to an end. What blockade? In June of 1948, Soviet forces cut off every road into West Berlin, completely knocking off supplies to a city of over 2 1/2 million people. So to help, each day supplies were airlifted into Berlin to help keep the folks alive. After almost a year, the blockade finally ended on May 12, 1949. And this kind of difficulty was status quo for Berlin for several decades on end.

We thought we provide an an interesting historical insight into the great city of Berlin, and compile a listing of films and videos related to Berlin during this period on the twentieth century. We have many videos related to World War One and Germany (La Grande Illusion, here, or here), but our focus today is on Berlin. Let's begin with a classic Fritz Lang film titled M, starring Peter Lorre. Set in Berlin, the film tells a terrific and horrific story of how the criminal underworld sets out to capture a sick whacko who is killing innocent children. The film was made in 1931. Next up, check out the 1936 Berlin Olympics and watch Jesse Owens victory in the 100m dash upset the host of the Berlin games, Adolf Hitler. And on to the 1940s, where Berlin was the HQ of the Nazis during WWII. Another interesting set of short videos can be found for a search of the Berlin Wall. A good film of that era is Fritz Lang's 1000 Eyes of Dr. Mabuse, made in 1960. On the night November 9, 1989 - the Berlin Wall was finally attacked by the people and on its way down for good. Or so we hope.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Battle of the Battles

For reasons that are a mystery to me, a lot of movies are either about war, or set in a war torn environment. And war is nothing short of terrible. No argument. But what were the best war movies at you can watch at LikeTelevision? Well here the list. The Battle of the Battles.

10) The Battle of San Pietro Written, directed and narrated by John Huston, which means, yes - this is a good film.

9) The Battle of Midway This battle was the turning point for dominance on the sea in World War II. Admiral Bull Halsey, interesting fellow.

8) The Battle of Britain Starring Winston Churchill and our brave friends the Brits.

7) Forbidden Games - This is the story of some orphaned children in WWII France. Very powerful movie. also known as Jeux Interdits, the French title.

6) Battleship Potemkin - Sergei Eisenstein's landmark film set during the Russian revolution.

5) Throne of Blood Imagine a film that combines Japanese master Akira Kurosawa and Shakespeare's Macbeth. The final fight scene in the end is required viewing. The soldiers decide to kill their leader in lieu of facing the battle w/ the fast approaching enemy. About a thousand arrows are fired from everywhere to finish the job. One of the greatest pieces of film ever.

4) Samurai II Duel At Ichijoji Temple Hiroshi Inagaki 's epic trilogy of Musashi Miyamoto, Japan's greatest Samurai warrior. In part 2, everyone wants to knock him off the top, so they challenge him, and lose. The best scene is in a rice paddy field, where he defeats about 100 people who are trying to get him. And because of the difficult footing in the rice paddys, the battle is totally believable.

3) La Grande Illusion Jean Renoir's amazing film about the futility of war.

2) The Battle of Algiers I think this film is fascinating, and hard to watch. It provides a frightening insight on today's war on terror and how war is seldom an answer for fighting hate and terror.

1) Seven Samurai Akira Kurosawa 's 3 1/2 story about a group of Samurai and Ronin (Samurai who have no master or Lord) that join up with some frightened villagers to defend their turf against bandits. Lots of exciting battles, and the final battle is something you just have to experience after watching the whole movie. Totally worth your time.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Charles Dickens' David Copperfield

Check out the newest addition to the movie library at LikeTelevision™, Charles Dickens' David Copperfield. The film features a very impressive cast of British acting legends, including Laurence Olivier, Ralph Richardson, Michael Redgrave, Richard Attenborough, and Edith Evans to name a few of the biggest names.

In the film, David Copperfield goes through many triumphs and tragedies on his life's journey in a series of flashbacks and reflections of what the heck happened during the course of his eventful life. Eventually, he gains a deeper understanding that love has more to do with compassion than passion and physical beauty. And that to attain true love, it takes a great deal of courage and strength.