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They have better beds on the A ward.


San Francisco Presidio

July 9th, 2000

Director's Cut
I rented L.A. Confidential yesterday. I'd forgotten how good it is. The ending was a little sappy, but so what? Also watched Crossroad, which again, I haven't seen for a while. Ry Cooder and Sonny Terry respectively on guitar and harp. Ralph what's his name, The Karate Kid, was still Ralph what's his name, The Karate Kid, but it was still a good time. I noted this evening, watching Ebert and Whomever, that the Coen brothers have released a Blood Simple "directors cut", I assume into the theaters, but perhaps just on tape and DVD. I rented this movie many years ago finding it in a Napa video rental store having seen their second movie, Raising Arizona.

I thought of some friends in San Francisco I hadn't seen for a long time, smiling as I visualized what their reaction must have been when they (had undoubtedly) first seen it. One of the great noir films, not as slick and tight as L.A. Confidential, but in many ways better, the last scene in the dark room with the bullets punching through the wall from the lighted room opposite making my hair stand on end. The Coen brothers. A gift straight out of left field.

I've had this weird feeling occasionally that I'm losing track of what's happening on film, similar, perhaps, to what's happened to me with music. I joined a local independent video rental store located down the street on Grand near the lake, easily within walking distance, and I've been looking over the new releases. I don't recognize half of them. I'm not ready to give up on movies yet. I don't subscribe to Showtime or the other movie channels generally because I've seen most of their offerings at the theater before they reach the screen and I'm not about to start, but I think it's time to pick up a DVD player and a decent television set and track down a proper film buff's video rental store in Oakland.

The banner photograph was taken at the San Francisco Presidio. I crapped out on a second photograph. The quote under The Sole Proprietor title is by Robert Orben. No, I don't know who he is either.