Archive for the ‘Ways To See Film, Television, and Media’ Category

Downton Abbey: The Exhibition Photos #downtonexhibition #downtonabbey

May 15, 2018

Photos from my visit to Downton Abbey: The Exhibition on 12 May 2018.

Thomas’ suit

The table setting

A standing mirror with video built into it.


Lady Grantham’s drawing-room with video of Violet’s best lines. Constant laughter at this station.


Daisy’s section. My dog’s namesake.


Rosamund’s hat in a case with gowns in the glass’ reflection.



Downton Abbey: The Exhibition

May 14, 2018

Finally made it Downton Abbey: The Exhibition this weekend in New York City thanks to my dear friend Nina. Three glorious floors of an in-depth look at the sets, costumes, characters and history surrounding this iconic television series. Awe, laughter, goosebumps, smiles and even a few tears shed during our tour of the Crawleys’ estate. Gorgeous curation makes this a must-see for any fan of the series.

That’s me in front of a portrait of Lady Rosamund Painswick played by Samantha Bond.

Visit Downton Abbey: The Exhibition in New York City through June 30, 2018.
Read Reel Charlie’s reviews of Downton Abbey: Season 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6.

You Should Be Buying DVDs Instead Of Relying On Netflix (The Concourse)

April 29, 2018

Bravo to Concourse writer, Shawn Cooke for the courage to say what I’ve been thinking and occasionally saying here on Reel Charlie. From The Concourse,

There’s really no good reason why DVD ownership isn’t in vogue in the same way that owning records is. On a practical level, DVDs are much easier to box up and move than vinyl, and you can even get one of those big leather-bound CD cases if the boxes are too much.

The best part might be that you don’t have to scroll through endless screens of middling content for something to watch if you already own, say, 50 of your favorites. You just walk over and put your selection into your DVD or Blu-ray player. (If you don’t have one of those, they now cost like $40.)

I’m sure most will disagree with Shawn and me. The tens of thousands of streaming choices should be good enough. And if you really want to watch something that’s not included with your monthly subscriptions, platforms like Amazon give you digital rent or own access to dive deeper for better content. Personally that works most of the time, but certainly not all the time. If you look at my Director list (right-hand column of the blog), you’ll see international and independent directors not easily found on subscription platforms or digital rent/own. Filmmakers such as Derek Jarman, Eytan Fox, Ferzan Ozpetek, Glenn Gaylord, Ingrid Jungermann, John Greyson, Lisa Gornick, Ousame Sembene, Pedro Almodover, Rikki Beadle-Blair, Sarah Polley, and Ventura Pons. Which is why I own films on DVD and Blu-ray from most of these directors. It’s a delicious combination of classic, comfort food, iconic, and personal.

Read the full article on The Concourse.
A glimpse of my own modest disk collection:

‘Armistead Maupin’s Tales of the City’: Ellen Page Joins Laura Linney, Olympia Dukakis in Netflix Sequel (The Hollywood Reporter)

April 28, 2018

Outstanding news from The Hollywood Reporter,

It’s official: Netflix is reviving Armistead Maupin’s Tales of the City as a 10-episode limited series.

The streaming giant on Tuesday confirmed the 10-episode sequel to the Showtime/PBS take on the LGBT-themed novel. Laura Linney and Olympia Dukakis are confirmed to reprise their roles as Mary Ann Singleton and Anna Madrigal, respectively, from the original series. Barbara Garrick also will return as DeDe Halcyon Day. The Netflix take also has enlisted Ellen Page, who will play Shawna. Lauren Morelli (Orange Is the New Black) has joined the production and will serve as writer and showrunner.

Based on the books by Maupin, Tales of the City follows Mary Ann (Linney), who returns home to San Francisco and is reunited with her daughter (Page) and ex-husband Brian 20 years after leaving them behind to pursue her career. Fleeing the midlife crisis that her picture-perfect Connecticut life created, Mary Ann returns home to her chosen family and will quickly be drawn back into the orbit of Anna Madrigal (Dukakis) and the residents of 28 Barbary Lane.

From the description, seems to me this adaptation emerges from the book, Mary Ann in Autumn. I’m a little sad they didn’t start out with Michael Tolliver Lives, which would give them a 3-season arc to work with, but I’ll take what I can get. It will be interesting to see if the hair and make-up people femme up Page for her role as bisexual Shawna Hawkins. I think she has the potential to create an iconic character for herself, like Dukakis did with Anna Madrigal. I’m also very excited to find out who they cast as Jake, the transman gardener and who they get to play Ben, Michael’s husband. The script tease shows a scene with MaryAnn and her Darien, CT husband which makes no sense. He stayed off-stage in the books, referred to but never seen. Lots of questions for this Maupin fan.

Read the full article on The Hollywood Reporter.

Another Hulu bundle: Hulu and HBO

April 24, 2018

First Hulu announced a bundle with Spotify, the streaming music giant. Now Hulu’s teaming up with HBO. From USA Today,

The latest tempting offer dangled before cord-cutters and other streaming video lovers: Add HBO to your Hulu subscription for $4.99 monthly, a $10 savings off the regular price for six months. The deal is available to new and non-current HBO subscribers for a limited time.

Read the full offer on USA Today.

Amazon Prime Video Getting 60-Plus LGBTQ Films From Outfest (Variety)

April 23, 2018

From Variety,

Amazon’s Prime Video is now streaming 58 official-selection feature films from Outfest LGBTQ film festivals — with six more coming soon — available to Prime members at no additional cost.

The films were published to Prime Video directly by filmmakers or rights holders through Amazon’s Prime Video Direct self-publishing program, which lets content owners earn royalties based on customer viewing time.

The titles include: comedy “G.B.F.” (pictured above), the 2013 Outfest Los Angeles closing night film; “A Sinner In Mecca,” winner of the 2015 Outfest Grand Jury Award for documentary; “Open,” the first American film to win the Teddy jury prize at the Berlin Film Festival; drama “The Gymnast,” winner of 2006 Outfest Grand Jury Award for American narrative feature; comedy “Women Who Kill,” nominated for Film Independent’s 2018 best first screenplay; documentaries “Major!” and “Political Animals”; and cross-cultural/multigenerational dramedy “Baby Steps.”

“These are challenging times for many and reports of violence against LGBTQ citizens are on the rise,” said Christopher Racster, executive director of Outfest. “I still believe, though, in the power of our stories to change that narrative… It is a relationship like this with Prime Video Direct that will carry our stories across the widest network and reach the most individuals.”

Reel Charlie’s looking forward to Ingrid Jungermann’s Women Who Kill.
Read the full article on Variety.


LGBT Film & Television History (updated for 2018)

April 6, 2018

Yesterday I spoke at my friend, Dr. Sally O’Driscoll’s EN 291: Gender & Sexuality in Film & Literature class at Fairfield University. This was my second year invited to do a unit on LGBT Film & Television History. The queer film dork in me gets so excited putting together this program. I literally spent hours and hours tweaking my presentation. This year, I tried to shift the focus from a decades’ march through the 100 years of film (students eyes glazing…) to themes and conversations with the decades briefly discussed for historical purpose. I hope this presentation captured their attention and piqued their interest on the importance of diversity in film and television. I’m happy to share this information via LinkedIn and SlideShare.

Discover the presentation on SlideShare:
LGBT Film & Television History (updated for 2018).

Susan Dey Movies on YouTube

April 3, 2018

I have no idea whether any of this is legal or not, but I figure they are on YouTube to watch until they are not. Here are eight Susan Dey films from 1977 – 2002 that have been uploaded to YouTube for your viewing pleasure:

Mary Jane Harper Cried Last Night (1977)

Little Women, (1978 Part 1)

Little Women, (1978 Part 2)

Love Leads the Way (1984 with Timothy Bottoms)

I Love You Perfect (1989)

Bed of Lies (1992 with Chris Cooper)

Whose Child is This? The War for Baby Jessica (1993 with Michael Ontkean)

Beyond Betrayal (1994 with Richard Dean Anderson)

Disappearance (2002 with Harry Hamlin)

Silver Foxes and My Beautiful Laundrette series (Indiewire)

March 29, 2018

Indiewire reports that two members of the Golden Girls production team are creating a pilot for a show about gay male seniors called Silver Foxes.

And over on the other side of the pond, a television series is being created based on the 1985 film classic, My Beautiful Laundrette starring Kumail Nanjiani (The Big Sick).

Both projects sound hopeful. Fingers crossed. Read the full articles on Indiewire:
‘The Golden Girls’ and ‘Gilmore Girls’ Team to Develop Gay Senior Citizen Comedy ‘Silver Foxes’
‘My Beautiful Laundrette’ TV Show in the Works With Kumail Nanjiani to Star and Co-Write

A Simple Matter of Justice

March 25, 2018

The documentary A Simple Matter of Justice chronicles the 1993 March on Washington for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Rights. Yes I was there. Yes, it was 25 years ago. Yes, it’s now a history lesson. I found the doc on Kanopy and had it in my queue for a few months. After reading about the March for Our Lives protest yesterday, I kept remembering my first national march and how much it meant to me. I marched with friends from my hometown, friends from my Atlanta years, my boyfriend Dennis who is still my best friend, and many friends from New York City. The weekend was spectacular and one of the best in my life. I’m sure the folks who attended yesterday’s march will feel the same in years to come. It’s a rare and wonderful feeling to be a part of something that shifts the consciousness of our culture. A Simple Matter of Justice samples nearly every part of the weekend. The fashions still look a bit late 80’s and the talking heads look so young – Nancy Pelosi, Barney Frank, Melissa Etheridge, Martina Navratilova, Lea Delaria, RuPaul, Ian McKellan, and others sound a battle cry that takes us from 1993 to the present. Many things have changed for the better but the LGBTQ community continues to fight for full and equal rights. The documentary clocks in just under an hour presenting film footage by topic. The result becomes more primary source material than art documentary, but the sentiment remains. 4 out of 5 for this important chronicle of a civil rights march in Washington for LGBTQ rights.

%d bloggers like this: