Tag Archives: Biography

Shirley is not Jesting in this Biopic

10 Jun

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Available on VOD
Spoiler Alert

Literary enthusiasts are encouraged to seek out Josephine Decker’s cinematic look into the mirror darkly of Shirley Jackson’s life. This mystery novelist is best known for her horror fiction, namely The Haunting of Hill House. In an amusing twist, this movie is an adaptation of Susan Scarf Merrell‘s novel which examines the life of this author. To have two degrees of separation in this examination of Jackson’s life is reality bending.

In the biopic simply titled Shirley, everything we learn is through the eyes of a fictional couple who stayed with her. Newlyweds Fred (Logan Lerman) and Rose (Odessa Young) witness the turnabout of a happy 50s Americana. They are the perfect foil when comparing them to Jackson and Hyman. By their invitation, they moved in with the author and professor only to witness a teardown of life. As young and glossimer eyed as they are, Fred and Rose want to stay together.

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URBANGARDE unguarded with Authorized Biography!

13 Apr

URBANGARDE Book CoverPolkadot Autobiography – URBANGARDE Chronicle will arrive at the end of the month to uncover the the early years of the band’s formation by band leader/vocalist Temma Matsunaga and vocalist Yoko Hamasaki. Ever since their debut in 2008, they have released over 20 albums, singles, DVDs and books. Their loyal following is to be noted. They are known for their outrageous visual performances. In this book, they reveal stories behind the band’s most outrageous and controversial songs and music videos, behind-the-scenes friction between the members, and private photos from URBANGARDE’s 12-year career. This authorized look is set to release April 27th!

This collection will also feature a new biography of keyboardist Kei Ohkubo and extensive notes about this band’s connection to Japanese subculture and national issues, including earthquakes, nuclear power, mental health, lolita culture, and pop idols.

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Mark Twain’s Niagara, the Graphic Novel & Book Two Plans

30 Jan

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Mark Twain is a man of the world. To say history is alive in Niagara is an understatement and this adaptation into a graphic novel form by AH Comics has many accolades. It was published two years ago and I didn’t get a chance to discover this book until now. I am amused how book one finishes–almost as if though teasing about his future and appearance in Star Trek: The Next Generation, “Time’s Arrow.”

Honestly, I feel that’s more of an influence of the artist having seen the episode. Chapter 10, Into the Unknown, sees Samuel L. Clemens witnessing Niagara Falls getting illuminated on September 14, 1860. The beauty he conveys with watercolour on canvas of a star field is a fine way to close off book one.

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The Pulps, Russell Mulcahy and In Like Flynn on VOD

22 May

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Available on Amazon PRIME
Released by Blue Fox Entertainment

Amongst Gen Xers, Russell Mulcahy is a very recognizable name. He’s the directorial talent who brought Highlander (1985) and The Shadow (1994) to life. With works like Tale of the Mummy (1998), Mysterious Island (2005) and The Scorpion King: Rise of a Warrior (2008), fans can surmise he has a love for the pulps. The visual narrative he offers in this genre makes him the ideal choice to direct In Like Flynn, a biopic about the life of Errol Flynn before he went to Hollywood and became world famous. When he got the call, he was on a jet to Australia faster than this miscreant can down a shot of old whiskey.

Although many actors played Robin Hood over the years, the big question is which actor was the most memorable? Everyone agrees it’s Erroll, hands down. His life story made him perfect for not only this role–like Robert Downey Jr did with Iron Man–but also as Captain Blood. According to Mulcahy, he came to define more than one generation of the action hero status quo; he stuck to playing swashbuckling roles for most of the early part of his career. Also, Warner Brothers gave him no choice when he expressed interest in other kinds of roles later in life.

In what this director did not know about the man, the team of writers–Corey Large, Marc Furmie, Steve M. Albert and Luke Flynn (grandson)–helped explain. While this movie does not reveal everything you want to know but was afraid to ask, thankfully this actor has his memoirs (namely My Wicked, Wicked Ways) to sate those salacious appetites. To find the right person to play Errol wasn’t too hard.

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