Post-Weekend Open Thread…

Well, things started unpromisingly Friday night when we got the worst rain storm in Chicago’s recorded history. I live right outside O’Hare, and in less than one day we got eight inches of rain, the most since they started keeping records in the 1800s. And that understates it; we got more than six inches of that in under three hours, a simply crazy middle of the night storm. The rain was so intense it sounded like a high pressure hose against my trailer, and there was tons of lightning, which set fire to houses and apartments around the entire area.

Of course my power went out. We’ve had so many crazy storms now and power outages that I think it’s actually working to ConEd’s benefit at this point. I think most people probably feel more sorry for them than mad. On the other hand, my trailer park is on some high ground, so we never really flood, even in circumstances like this. However, some of the major streets by me, including four-lane Elmhurst road, were completely submerged the following day, and for a stretch several blocks long. I’m talking over a foot of water it; it was pretty crazy.

So obviously I didn’t do a lot Saturday. Sunday, however, Paul and Holly (leaving back for California soon) and I roused ourselves for the early showing (10:15) of Captain America. I was well pleased. The film isn’t perfect–since they had but one film to get Cap out in and out of WWII, events were a tad compressed, making the war itself seem way too short–but it was another solid triumph for Marvel.

I mean, seriously, these guys have turned out five (connected) movies in what, three-four years, and all of them have been pretty good. A streak like that shouldn’t be discounted, especially when you look at the way DC / Warners has foundered with their comic book adaptations (barring the Christopher Nolan ones). I cannot wait for the Avengers movie next year. That is going to be crazy. Anyway, I’ll probably go a little deeper into the movie later, but again, I thought it was pretty nicely done.

Went home after dinner at Red Robin’s with P&H (oddly forwent the burger in favor of fried clam strips, but was not disappointed), and watched Unknown on DVD. That was Liam Neeson’s follow-up to Taken, and it’s pretty good, although in the end it’s basically a remake of a certain well-known science fiction movie.

The film’s coda was also amusing, as the film’s nebulous Evil Forces that were attempting to gain control of the film’s McGuffin At the Expense of Humanity were all the usual suspects (Big Business! Oh noes!) What was especially funny in this instance is that the exact McGuffin here would in the real world be vigorously suppressed by Luddite progressives, as have many similar products in the real world, at the probably cost of millions of lives. However, I doubt we’ll ever see such heresy in a major motion picture from Hollywood.

Also caught some of The Thing from Another World on TCM’s Essentials Jr. It did my heart good to know that Galaxy Jane was watching the movie with her kids. What a terrific film. They announced that next week’s movie would be The Road to Utopia. And odd choice, I thought, compared to the better known Road to Morroco or Zanzibar, but maybe they thought Utopia was more kid-friendly in some way. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great movie, nearly as good as the other two I mentioned (which is saying something), but if anything it has more injokes that kids will never get.

For example, the film’s main song, ‘Put it There, Pal,’ is full of hilarious references if you are up on your old time radio and movie trivia. However, when Bob zings Bing by noting he “has a voice just right for selling cheese,” well, if you don’t know that Crosby hosted the Kraft Music Hour, I’m not sure what you’ll make of it. Still a very funny movie, though.

Anyway, what did you guys do?