Uncle Bardie’s Movie of the Week: The Best “Eh” Movie Ever

Once a week on Monday, Uncle Bardie shares a movie with his Readers he gives a big two thumbs up. It will simply be a short excerpt or a trailer. From time to time, a reflection on the movie will appear below the video. So pop some popcorn and give yourself a treat. This week’s movie is “Strange Brew”.

For those of you who think Canadians are not funny, I have news for you. Canadians are some of the funniest people on the planet. Guess it’s all that ice and snow and long winters. They have a lot of free time and there’s nothing else to do but knit and tell polar bear jokes.

Like: How many polar bears does it take to break the ice? Just one. Once he’s swigged down a bottle of Péché Mortel Imperial Stout, he’s the life of the party.

Just look at a few of the members of the Canada’s Comedy Establishment who have made the long, treacherous journey to the US: Dan Ackroyd, Jim Carey, Mike Meyers, Seth Rogen, Martin Short, Tommy Chong, Samantha Bee, Caroline Rhea and Ted Cruz. You’d think that there were no comedians left in Canada. But there are.

Just watch “Strange Brew” (1983). It has Canadians, of course. Those lovable mugs, Bob and Doug, the McKenzie Brothers, are just two. It has more beer than you could shake a polar bear at. You can’t get through a scene without tripping over an eh or a hoser. I’d say that is some pretty good reasons why this is a Canadian comedy.

By the way, just a footnote. “Strange Brew” is a remake of “Hamlet”. Bob and Doug are regular Rosencrantz and Guildensterns.

It’s my understanding that Bob and Doug had beer on set everyday for all the cast. So if the movie is a little hazy at times, you’ll know why.

So see it. If you can, see it with some Canadians. They can translate some of the Canadianisms for you.

The Neighborhood Lawn War

Song for this post. The Monkees: Pleasant Valley Sunday.

My neighbor one fine day slunk out of his cave,                                                           Raised his finger and made it misbehave.                                                                           He went to his mower and gave it a start,                                                                        Then leveled his grass till it was a park.                                                                               “Show off,” I said, then headed to the store.                                                                         I’d not be outdone by the man next door.                                                                                 I returned home with some seed and some sod,                                                           Ready to take on that petty little god.                                                                                    I’d show that he was a neighborhood fraud,                                                                     That I wasn’t about to be overawed.                                                                                Soon I had the finest grass on the block.                                                                            No lawn could match it. I was a big shot,                                                                     Winner of the prize for the best yard in town.                                                                      My neighbor would not take this, lying down.                                                                Before I knew it, a nursery truck                                                                                     Drove up to his front door and came to a stop.                                                                      A man in uniform tumbled him out                                                                                        Of the driver’s cab and went ’round about                                                                           To the back of the truck to its very big butt.                                                                         He pushed and he pulled from out of its gut                                                                   Fauna so green I thought it was from Oz.                                                                        They made my breath take something of a pause,                                                         Then plants so exotic and some quite erotic.                                                                          I wanted to spring over for a summertime frolic.                                                                     But a determined me held me in check.                                                                                   I gritted my teeth. My nerves were a wreck.                                                                      Out on my back lawn I gathered my troops.                                                            Whatever the trouble, whatever the loops                                                                          We had to jump through to get back our pride                                                                   We were more than ready to make that ride,                                                                      Me, my wife, my kids, my dad and my mom.                                                                     We were about to kick some butt and then some.                                                              We tore up the lawn both front and the rear.                                                                    With a gusto, we grinned from ear to ear.                                                                          We readied for battle, we had a plan                                                                                   To show this neighbor he wasn’t The Man.                                                                         We were about to show he’d made a mistake.                                                                    We grabbed our shovels, our hoes and our rakes.                                                             Toward his yard we dug one heck of a trench                                                                     To send our destroyers up one very big ditch.                                                                      In it, we planted some kudzu, ivy and weeds,                                                                     And all the damage no yard ever needs.                                                                             We aimed our destroyers well for the run                                                                          And smiled as we fired our loaded gun,                                                                                A water hose shooting across the sun.                                                                              We fired and fired till our day was done.                                                                         Soon the neighborhood war was over                                                                                    A white flag rose from his field of clover.                                                                           That neighbor knew he was down for the count,                                                                    If he carried on, there’d be a big knock out.

Friday’s Creator Corner: Daman Wayans and Homey D. Clown

Each Friday I feature a Creative Artist on Friday’s Creator Corner. Creativity is the art of making something out of nothing. I leave the post up for a week, then replace it with another post. After taking it down, I link it to Friday’s Creator Corner Artists page.

Today’s Creator’s Corner artists are Daman Wayans, “In Living Color”, and Homey D. Clown:

 

Hamlet Interval 3: What if

Song for this post. Brenda Lee: All Alone Am I.

For Hamlet’s plot till now, see Hamlet So Far.

Some rise by sin, and some by virtue fall. (Measure for Measure Act II, Scene I).

Act 1 Interlude. There were only two women at Elsinore. One Hamlet’s mom, Gertrude, and Ophelia who was verboten to date him, Hamlet just didn’t have a girlfriend. No female for some whoppee, none for hanky panky. What if there had been women in the Castle in addition to Gertrude and Ophelia? Here are some suggestions and what these women might say:

Lady Macbeth: You do your Uncle in or I will do you in.

Rosalind (from As You Like It): Let’s go have some fun. You do Tootsie and I will do Yentil.

Beatrice (from Much Ado About Nothing): I’m sorry but I will not marry you. I am not into guys who wear black. Or green. Or blue. Or orange. But you might look nice in purple.

Annie Hall: I don’t care whether you kill your uncle, but you gotta kill that spider.

Emma (from Emma by Jane Austen): Have I got the right gal for you.

Scarlett: Tomorrow is another day to kill your Uncle.

Ana (from Fifty Shades of Grey): So you have a dungeon here in Elsinore?

Martha Stewart: This castle could use some redecorating.

Mary Poppins: Can you say supercalifragilisticexpialidocious? If you can, then take a spoonful of sugar and the medicine of revenge will go down. Poof. No more Claudius.

Princess Leia from Star Wars: Use the Force to take Claudius out.

Mommy Dearest: Look, Hamlet, if you don’t do the job, I am going to have to use the coat hanger.

Hermione Granger (from Harry Potter): I’m telling you that Snape is Claudius.

Clarice Starling (from Silence of the Lambs) I will not eat Claudius’ liver with or without fava beans.

Jane Eyre: Why is everybody always saying to me, “To eeyre is Jane”?

Annie Savoy (from Bull Durham): Hamlet, I have just the thing for you. Baseball. You could be a .390 batter if you tried. You certainly have the arm for it.

Holly Golightly (from Breakfast at Tiffany’s): You don’t have any problems that cab money and a trip to Tiffany’s can’t solve, Hamlet.

Mrs. Lovett (from Sweeny Todd): Hamlet, I have the perfect thing to cheer you up. A lovely meat pie.

Alice (in Wonderland): You haven’t seen a cat, have you? We went out on a blind date, then he disappeared. He did have a nice smile.

Eliza Doolittle (from My Fair Lady): Aw garn, I never see’d a castle before.

Guinevere (from Camelot): Hamlet, do you want to join my Round Table?

Daisy Buchanan (from The Great Gatsby): Honestly, Hamlet, Tom knows everything. He may even know where Claudius put the poison. Now could you pass the tea please?

Ripley (from Alien): Your uncle has something growing inside of him, Hamlet.

Lieutenant Uhura (from Star Trek): Beam me up, Captain Hamlet.

Shakira: Just shake those hips, Hamlet.

Jenifer Lopez: You look so bootylicious, Hamlet. We make such a bootylicious couple, don’t you think?

Beyonce: I saw you in the elevator, Hamlet, with Ophelia of all people.

Taylor Swift: Just shake it off, Hamlet. Shake it off.

Mylie Cyrus: I could twerk Claudius dead. I have great aim. And I will just wham him with my wrecking ball.

Lady Gaga: Hamlet, we are going to have to do something about those clothes.

Marge Gunderson (from Fargo): Oh, geez.

Mae West: Why don’t you come up and see me sometime, Big Boy?

Unfortunately none of these were available. Only Gertrude, only Ophelia.

Which pretty much left Ophelia by herself. Gertrude had Claudius. Hamlet had Horatio. Polonius had his scheming and Laertes had Paris. Ophelia had no one. She was alone. Quite alone.

Uncle Bardie’s Movie of the Week: The pure joy of fly fishing

Once a week on Monday, Uncle Bardie shares a movie with his Readers he gives a big two thumbs up. It will simply be a short excerpt or a trailer. From time to time, a reflection on the movie will appear below the video. So pop some popcorn and give yourself a treat. This week’s movie is

Fly fishing has a grace and a poetry to it. To watch a line glide across the water, dive, then rise and finally land in the perfect place, that is a thing to behold. It is not about the fish. It’s the pure pleasure the fisherman takes in being one with the line gliding across the water.

A River Runs Through It is not only a great book about this thing called dry fly fishing. It is also a good movie. As sure as there was an Eden where four rivers met, there were great trout rivers, the Elkhorn and the Big Blackfoot in the western Montana of the early twentieth century. This was where Reverend Maclean instructed his two boys, Norman and Paul, in religion of the Presbyterian kind, and in the art of dry fly fishing.

Norman’s father told his sons that Adam was a fisherman casting his line into one of those four rivers of Eden. ‘Course Adam was not a fly fisherman. He was the kind of fisherman who’d be in the garden with a Hills Bro. coffee can, digging for angleworms. That was the way Adam was, and that was the reason he failed.

Like so many fathers since–and maybe before–Reverend Maclean used sport to teach his sons the values he cherished. But this is not the father’s story. It is the story of two brothers who took to fly fishing first to please their father, then to please themselves, knowing that the sport is not easily mastered. Paul, the younger, is the one who loves it more, enough to truly become an artist with it.

As it turned out, it was the one area of his life he could master. The rest of it was a mess. He was a gambler and a drinker and led a life that his family would not be proud of. Yet they could not do anything other than love him. And, for that, he would break their hearts.

What happened to Paul is much of the story–his stubbornness, his charm, his complete commitment to fly fishing–but there is no why to how he ended up the way he ended. We see the boy, Paul, refusing to eat the oatmeal before him at the breakfast table. We see the teenager Paul challenging the rapids of the river he loves. We see the adult Paul bring his Indian girl friend into one of the local dives and challenge all the bigots there to stop him. Somewhere along the way from a boyhood of fun to an adult, things turned sour for Paul. Something drove him onto a road to destruction.

Like so many outlaws we love, Paul is not just a rebel. He is a troubled man. His trouble taking him again and again to the card table until his luck ran out. But again and again he takes us to the rivers and the waters he loves to cast his line. To practice his art with a mastery that his older brother and his father recognize early on. That character that made him such a great fisherman is also the one that pulled him down. But man, what a fisherman he was.

If there is a Great American Novel, “The River Runs Through It” may very well be it. Read the book, then see the movie. They are well-worth it.