I am on vacation for 2 weeks and am very happy about that because ...well, I am off that's all, even though I am not going anywhere. I am seeing a friend of mine...social distancing in place and it will be nice to just relax. On a sad note, I followed a blog by Rick Watson who died suddenly last week after a short illness. He actually posted the night before saying he felt under the weather and would be going to the doctors the next day but he didn't make it. This was a shock to me because, even though I never met this man, he seemed genuine, very happy, an excellent writer and photographer, who loved his wife, Jilda, their home and dogs. I am unsure if he died of a heart attack or if he had Covid or just something else but, whatever the cause, he is no longer here and that is very sad. Sorry for being a downer but I wanted to talk just a bit about this gallant man. Now on to films and this week, Wandering Through The Shelves, chose Secret Doorways/Hidden Worlds. I, again, am skipping Alice in Wonderland because, I have not seen any others but the one with Johnny Depp and even though it is not horrid, I find there are others to talk about so, here are my 3...
1. THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA-1962
You thought I would pick the excellent 1925 version but I already spoke about that one so I decided to choose this little known remake with Herbert Lom in the leading role. We all know the Phantom lives in an underground lair in the sewers of gay Paris, right under the Paris Opera house. We know the Phantom is seen in shadows scaring the wits out of everyone and killing a few, but they probably deserved it. What you don't know is how much they humanised this Phantom making him out to be a true victim with Lord Ambrose being the real villain who stole the Phantom's work and saying it was his own. Oh and it no longer takes place in Paris but London but..a sewer is a sewer. You still have Christine with the beautiful voice and the man she falls for and vice versa but it does stray from the original. I still like this film for the variation on it and for Lom's performance.
2. HARRY POTTER AND THE SORCERER'S STONE-2001
Any Harry Potter film would do but it all started with this first film (well it started with the books but we won't go there...) and how I loved that Harry went through a brick pillar at the train station only to come to another train station in another world that the humans, Muggles, have no idea exist. Poor Harry is sent to his Aunt's home, as a baby by Dumbledore and Maggie Smith, to protect the boy from the evil that killed his parents. Here Harry grows up being abused by his aunt and uncle and their ugly son because they actually fear him although he doesn't know that. After many, many tries, Harry finally gets an invite to go to Hogwarts school in the Wizard world and he finds out that he is a wizard and is famous as the boy who stopped the evil..that is a lot of Ands! (I never said I was good in grammar). He is befriends not only by Hagrid, who brings him to school, but by Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger fellow students who are not afraid of him and join him on his quest to find out more. This was the start of the long film series that seemed to get better and better. The children are excellent and grew up to be just as good as when they were kids( well, not sure what Rupert Grint is doing). I love this series.
3. NATIONAL TREASURE-2004
Ok this does star Nicholas Cage who I just want to slap, but it is still a very entertaining film that makes you think about what might lurk under our feet. He plays a treasure hunter who grew up with the tales of a secret treasure hidden by the founding fathers and now he is trying to locate the goods before his former partner, played by hubba hubba Sean Bean, gets his fingers on them. With his trusty sidekick, he meets a curator, played by Diane Kruger, who, at first thinks he is a nut(not far from the truth when thinking about Cage) only to realize he is telling the truth. They must outwit Mr. Bean (heehee) and get to the treasure and show that it actually exists just like the M & M guys, Santa and the Easter Bunny do. There were 2 more sequels but I like the first one the best.
Which 3 would you choose?
Who wouldn't love a secret doorway, I want to create one in my home and think that would be so cool. I love secret doorways.