Wednesday, February 11, 2009

A Partial Wishlist

You would think that because I review independent and mainstream movies, I wouldn't need to purchase DVDs. But there are those that either aren't readily available (and it's always because I can't find the contact information for that particular publicist), or those that I've discovered long after the initial release, as with BBC Video's "The Noel Coward Collection," pounced upon after I'd watched "Meet Me Tonight," a filmic adaptation of three of his plays. That made me curious about the Collection, which in turn sped me toward the books of his plays, his diaries, his letters. Writing is sometimes impossibly frustrating, which is why if one tries as a writer and does not simply coast along, it's crucial to look to those writers that can make one fall madly in love with words and remember the value of each word to whatever one writes. For me, that lovefest is triggered by Noel Coward, as well as Neil Simon, whose "California Suite" movie adaptation I'm watching while writing this. I'm surprised I hadn't latched onto Simon's works much earlier, considering that "The Goodbye Girl" (never the Patricia Heaton/Jeff Daniels TV movie; the original, with Richard Dreyfuss and Marsha Mason, forever and always), and "The Out-of-Towners (Only the original, with Jack Lemmon and Sandy Dennis) are prominently in my DVD collection, and I also originally owned them on videotape.

In my mind, I've tried to keep track of a wishlist I've been building, based on all these factors. I've failed, forgetting and then remembering and then forgetting, so I need to have a concrete version, as concrete as it can get on the Internet. So here it is, my wishlist for now, which I'm sure I'll add to once more titles suddenly pop up while I'm trying to get to sleep, either overnight before going to work in the morning, or on subsequent nights:

The Noel Coward Collection ( - I've also got it in my Netflix queue, only because I couldn't bear having only a week from my local library to pore over the treasures these seven discs contain. And I know that once I eventually purchase this, or convince someone else to get it for me, these discs will be in my DVD player often.

California Suite ( - The dialogue and characterizations (particularly from Maggie Smith and Michael Caine) are why I've watched this eight times so far on the family Tivo in the living room, and why, even with 10% space left on the machine, I've refused to delete it.

Back to the Future ( - In this new special edition, all the footage from "Back to the Future: The Ride" is in this set. But here is the conundrum I'm sure Universal Studios Home Entertainment is delighted for me to have: If I buy this, then I have two copies of "Back to the Future," because of the trilogy pack which came out so long ago. Now, do I also buy parts II and III just to have them separately, even though they contain the same extra features that the original trilogy pack has? Hopefully they got the aspect ratios correct on parts II and III this time because the first time, II and III were framed wrong, and Universal initiated a replacement program whereby you could get new discs for free with both movies in the correct aspect ratio. From what I've learned, they've learned as well and those new II and III discs should be from the same stock. But I want the first film so badly again, trilogy pack be damned, because of that ride footage, even without the DeLorean simulator and Omnimax screen.

Anything by Noel Coward ( - Total mental orgasm.

Anything by Neil Simon ( - Total Mental Orgasm: The Sequel

There's more DVD and book desires floating around in this head, I'm sure, but none of those have touched off any synapses yet. I'll give it time. No point in forcing what will eventually come.

Enter the Scanner

Tomorrow I'm working at my dad's school as a substitute campus supervisor, and that's advantageous for this project of scanning those item check-out receipts from the library and posting them on here. My dad has a flatbed scanner on a table across from his computer, and while I will soon also try the digital camera method suggested to me, this will make it easier for a lot of the long receipts I have that otherwise would need to be cut into manageable sections. Also have to remember to bring my flash drive with me, since I have plenty of room on there to save these images.