Social Security Scam Alert

IMG_3713WARNING do not open the email or click on link to “check your social security account.” It’s a scam. If you look closely, the link contains underscores, which would never happen with a government site not to mention the real site address is http://www.ssa.gov. I recommend you delete the email and share this warning with friends, especially those that are not on social media and/or are easily scammed.  Call your parents to let them know.

I personally received this email today. I know that the IRS issues your social security account summary by mail NOT email.

You are welcome. – BMT

Harry Connick Jr. replaces Billy Bush on NBC ‘Today’ show (shared post from counton2.com)

(CNN)- NBC “today” show looks to be setting the stage for life without billy bush. Singer and actor Harry Connick Junior announced Friday that he’ll be co-hosting the third hour o…

Source: Harry Connick Jr. replaces Billy Bush on NBC ‘Today’ show

 

Congratulations Harry!!! We at Reviews of the Arts SA (#Reviewsoftheartssa) are so excited for you!

“Deepwater Horizon” – Movie Review

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Photo of movie screen taken by me before the movie.

“Deepwater Horizon” #deepwaterhorizonmovie dramatically tells the story of the Deepwater Horizon (#deepwaterhorizon) oil spill and explosion that occurred on April 20, 2010 about 41 miles off the coast of Louisiana. Unfortunately, the technical cause of the oil well explosion is way over my head, so rather than bore you with the details and technicalities of the actual event, if you want a full background, I would direct you to the Wikipedia page – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deepwater_Horizon_oil_spill.

I am embarrassed to say that I barely remember hearing about this event. That may just be my ignorance or the fact that 2010 marked the beginning of some serious health issues for me. Perhaps I just wasn’t “tuned-in” to current events or maybe it didn’t get the news coverage it deserved due to the political nature of all things oil related??  I don’t know, but this story of the worst oil spill in U.S. History needs to be told and director, Peter Berg, and screenplay writers Matthew Michael Carnahan and Matthew Sand do a great job telling it.

The cinematography is incredible. I thought it was especially effective that the movie began with the audio of a hearing asking Transocean employee, Mike Williams, to recount the events. As he gets to the point of the explosion, it goes quiet, we can feel Mike’s hesitation as he goes back to the dark place in his memory where he really doesn’t want to go, and the opening credits begin. Of course there are many scenes with injuries, blood, fire, and explosions that add the necessary “shock value,” but this movie is more than that. This movie takes a very personal approach. The camera focuses on their individual faces. We see that the workers are ordinary people, we learn a little about their personal lives and the loved ones that they leave behind every time they go out to sea.  We see that most of them have a good rapport with each other. They kid around and seem to work well together.  The movie gives more focus to the fact that the crew of 126 that was on board the Deepwater Horizon was just performing their daily routine when suddenly they became faced with an extraordinarily catastrophic chain of events. In a matter of hours, these average oil workers became superheroes, risking their lives to save the lives of their co-workers.

The acting is phenomenal.  Mark Wahlberg plays Mike Williams, one of the heroes, who seemed to have a premonition that something would go wrong as he kissed his wife goodbye at the heliport just before he took-off to work, offshore, on the Deepwater Horizon for what was supposed to be 21 days.  Kurt Russell plays “Mr. Jimmy” Harrell, essentially the captain of the rig. Mike and Mr. Jimmy work for Transocean, the owner of the Deepwater Horizon. John Makovich plays Donald Vidrine, one of the BP Oil Company representatives that smugly made some fatally disastrous decisions. You hate him (and BP) right away and you can sense that the crew doesn’t like him either. The Transocean crew seems resentful of the way BP, who (they make a point of stressing) is just “leasing” the rig, was exerting its control over the rig operations about which they knew very little. Those decisions were cost-driven and gave no priority to safety and the “human factor.”  Bottom line, it is evident that monetary greed is what caused this disaster.

I was especially moved by a particular scene – when the injured survivors are on board the rescue ship, after role is called, they all kneel down and recite the Lord’s Prayer.  It is rare, (especially in movies) but awesome when it happens, to see victims immediately giving thanks and praise to God, instead of asking “why?”. It was also very somber at the end of the movie to see the photos of the eleven crew members that died.

I think this movie is excellent. Another “must see”.  I highly recommend you buy your tickets early.  I saw this on the day of its third or fourth screening and people were turned-away because the theater was full.  Please go see Deepwater Horizon and let me know what you think. – BMT

P.S. Country Music Fans, there’s a cameo but well-done performance by Trace Adkins, who plays the father of one of the deceased crew members.

Rest in Peace Gene Wilder

Together again, in Heaven.  Gene Wilder and Gilda Radner.

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Gene Wilder and Gilda Radner in 1986 – photo from Wikipedia.org

Gene Wilder. Born Jerome Silberman on June 11, 1933 died today – August 29, 2016 from complications due to Alzheimer’s Disease. He was 83 years old.

I probably realized it when I watched the film a few years ago, but it was interesting for me to read today at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gene_Wilder that his first movie role was in 1967, as a hostage in “Bonnie and Clyde.” There are so many awesome roles he played but one of my favorites was “Stir Crazy” with Richard Pryor and of course, “Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory.”  May he rest in peace. – BMT

What’s your favorite Gene Wilder movie? Please comment below.

Rest in Peace Garry Marshall

Somehow this sad news fell under my radar. Writer, producer, actor, Garry Marshall passed away on July 19, 2016.  He was 81 years old. As I feel it is always better late than never, I want to send my thoughts and prayers to Penny Marshall and the entire Marshall family. Garry Marshall was so incredibly talented, it would be terrible not to pay tribute to him. If you aren’t familiar with Garry’s career, just think back to your favorite TV show or movie since the 1960s and he probably had something to do with it. You name it, he’s likely written, produced, directed, and/or acted in it! Just to briefly list his accomplishments in television, he wrote for the Tonight Show Starring Jack Paar; The Danny Thomas Show, The Dick Van Dyke Show, The Lucy Show, Gomer Pyle, and The Odd Couple, just to name a few.  More notably he was the creator and executive producer of classic hits such as Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley (starring his sister, Penny), Mork & Mindy, Angie, Joanie Loves Chachi, and he was the executive consultant for the current version of The Odd Couple, with executive producer, Matthew Perry.  Over the years, Garry starred in several TV shows and movies, including Goldfinger, A League of Their Own, Murphy Brown, The Simpsons, The Majestic, Sabrina, the Teenage Witch, Louie, Two and a Half Men, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Hot in Cleveland, and The Odd Couple.  

Garry was born, Garry Kent Masciarelli on November 13, 1934 in the Bronx, New York. His father, Anthony Masciarelli, an industrial filmaker, changed the family name to Marshall in 1934. Though I am not certain why, I do know that back in those days, due to discrimination, many Italian-Americans changed their names to something they believed to be less “ethnic.” Being a New Yorker of Italian descent, I have a special place in my heart for stars like Garry. I always enjoyed listening to him give interviews. His voice, that New York accent, always took me back home. I couldn’t post about Garry without a video clip, so here’s an interview Garry did on “CBS This Morning” in 2012 to promote his book, “My Happy Days in Hollywood.”  Such a humble and down-to earth man; they just don’t make them like that anymore.

(Video obtained from YouTube)

Movies Directed by Garry Marshall:

1982 Young Doctors in Love
1984 The Flamingo Kid
1986 Nothing In Common
1987 Overboard
1988 Beaches
1990 Pretty Woman
1991 Frankie and Johnny
1994 Exit to Eden
1996 Dear God
1999 The Other Sister
1999 Runaway Bride
2001 The Princess Diaries

2004 Raising Helen
2004 The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement
2007 Georgia Rule
2010 Valentine’s Day
2011 New Year’s Eve
2016 Mother’s Day

If you are like me, you may be reading this list, thinking, “I didn’t know he did that!”  As you can see, not all of his work was comedy, but all of his work was brilliant!

In my research, I came across some of his quotes, “It’s always helpful to learn from your mistakes because then your mistakes seem worthwhile.” He also said, “Learn to work with people you wouldn’t go to lunch with.” Wise words to live by, don’t you think? The world has lost another great artistic legend. Rest in peace Garry. Eternal be his memory.

What’s your favorite Garry Marshall accomplishment? I’d love to hear about it.- BMT

Operator, Put me on Through, Garth Brooks is Coming to San Antonio!

Image from AT&T Center Advertisement

Callin’ Baton Rouge (and San Antonio!)

Garth & Trisha Yearwood are coming!

Two nights – July 22 & 23 at 7:00 p.m. – AT&T Center.

Ain’t goin down till the sun comes up!  Tickets will go on sale at 10:00 a.m. Central Time on Friday, June 3, 2016 at:

www.ticketmaster.com or ticketmaster.com/garthbrooks

or Ticketmaster Express 1-866-448-7849 or 1-800-745-3000*

*No sales at the venue box office or Ticketmaster outlets

Tickets will sell out fast!  Limit 8 tickets per person.

All seats will sell for the same price!

$61.64 plus $5.09 taxes plus $2.00 facility fee plus $6.25 service charge = $74.98.

“Life isn’t tried, it is merely survived when you’re standing outside the fire!”

Special Note: Select seats protected with paperless delivery. www.ticketmaster.com/creditcardentry

Garth, we’re “Shameless” and “Wrapped Up in You!”

#GARTHTOSA – Thank God for our answered prayers, San Antonio!

Brought to you by the American Honky Tonk Bar Association!

– Just kidding.  Show is sponsored by Ghost Tunes.

 

Rest in Peace Glenn Frey

“There’s . . .Heartache Tonight, I know.”

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What a terrible way to start the year for music fans. I was about to turn off my computer, when I came across this shocking post on the Eagles Facebook Page – https://www.facebook.com/EaglesBand/posts/1200240780005485

“There’s a Hole in the World”

https://youtu.be/WD3cnivUVXc

How I wish the news came from “Lyin’ Eyes.” Unfortunately, it is true, yet another musical legend has left us.  The Eagles founding member, guitarist, songwriter, and singer, Glenn Frey, passed away today. He was 67 years old. The post from the Eagles page said that Frey died from “complications from Rheumatoid Arthritis, Acute Ulcerative Colitis and Pneumonia.” I am saddened by this news. The Eagles are one of my favorite bands. In fact, I never met anyone that said they didn’t like them! I grew up in the 70s and 80s listening to their music and loved it all. I think it is safe to say that everyone has a favorite Eagles song.  Who hasn’t been to an event where the crowd was singing along to “Hotel California,” “Desperado,” “Take it Easy” or any number of Eagles classics?  Don Henley and Glenn Frey’s song lyrics are poetic genius; true works of art.

I got to cross something off my “bucket list”

Since they disbanded in the 80s, I never thought I’d get to see the Eagles perform live in my lifetime, but on September 8, 2008, my dream came true.  I was blessed to get tickets from one of my bosses to see them at the AT&T Center here in San Antonio. I took my,then 9 year-old, daughter with me.  There was not one song that we didn’t sing along to. We were up on our feet the entire time. (This was back when I could stand more than 10 minutes!) It was a surreal experience to be able to enjoy music from my childhood icons with my daughter. It is still one of the best concert memories we share. In fact, just last week, when we picked-up our tickets to the upcoming Pat Benatar rodeo concert (my Christmas present) we talked about how fantastic that show was. Music has always been a big part of our routine.  I’ve taken her to many concerts, but this one made a huge impression on her back then because they have so many hits, that the concert, as I recall, was over two hours long!  Also, on our way to the concert, she said she didn’t know who the Eagles were, but she recognized almost all of the songs in the set list. Each song sounded almost identical to the versions recorded some 20-30 years earlier; their voices were just as crisp. To me, it is the epitome of musical talent when artists sound just as good or even better, live in-concert, as they do on their studio recordings.

“Part of Me, Part of You”

This post seems to be more about the Eagles, than Glenn Frey, but let’s face it, as a co-founder, one of the lead singers and songwriters, Glenn Frey is a huge part of the Eagles and the Eagles are a huge part of Glenn Frey.  I imagine the band will continue to tour without him, since they were in the middle of their “History of the Eagles” tour when they took a break because of Glenn’s illness.  I think it would be an awesome tribute to him to continue, but they can never replace Glenn Frey.

Soundtrack to Our Lives

During Glenn’s solo career in the 80s, “The Heat Is On” was one of his biggest hits.  It is one of the songs on the soundtrack of “Beverly Hills Cop,” the story of a Detroit Cop (Eddie Murphy) that winds up in Beverly Hills. Coincidentally, Glenn Frey was born in Detroit on November 6, 1948. His song, “Part of Me, Part of You,” is also on the soundtrack for the movie, “Thelma & Louise.” His voice was soft yet powerful, with just the right amount of “rasp,” making his songs perfect to use in movies and really, perfect music for life’s many occasions.  Since reading the news of his passing, I’ve seen so many Twitter posts by celebrities, one that stands out, and I think most would agree with, was from Melissa Gilbert, she wrote, “Rest well Glenn Frey. So grateful for the soundtrack you gave my life. . .” I couldn’t put it better, he did give our lives a soundtrack!

David Bowie, There’s “A New Kid in Town”

Glenn joins so many great artists in Heaven tonight.  Rest in Peace Glenn, your music will live on forever.  You have the best of our love. – BMT