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MARK B. CARP& COMPANY, INC.

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Classic Movies


KEY LARGO

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Directed by John Huston and starring Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, Edward G. Robinson, Claire Trevor and Lionel Barrymore, the film Key Largo premiered on July 16th, 1948. Not a very complicated plot and somewhat reminiscent of To Have or Have Not - as a hurricane approaches southern Florida, a small hotel is terrorized by a gangster and his thugs who decide to weather out the storm at the seaside establishment. 

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ROAD TO PERDITION

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Directed by Sam Mendes and starring Tom Hanks, Paul Newman and Jude Law, the film Road To Perdition premiered on July 12th, 2002. Set during the Depression in Chicago, the movie chronicles a mob hit man, (Hanks), on a mission to avenge the murder of his wife and young son. His surviving son accompanies him on this odyssey, which gives a whole new meaning to a father-son road trip. If you haven’t seen it, Road To Perdition is dark but very good – and it’s Paul Newman’s last movie.

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THE SPY WHO LOVED ME

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Directed by Lewis Gilbert and starring Roger Moore, Barbara Bach, Curd Jurgens and Richard Kiel, the film The Spy Who Loved Me premiered on July 7th, 1977, 9, (7-7-77 – get it?). This was 10th James Bond film, the third to star Moore as 007, and bears little or no resemblance to Ian Fleming’s novel of the same name. Even though the plot is typical for a Bond flick – James has to save the world from a megalomaniac – the movie was popular with both film-goers and critics alike and was nominated for three Academy Awards – including Marvin Hamlisch’s soundtrack, (with Carly Simon singing Nobody Does It Better).

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FORREST GUMP

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Adapted from the novel by Winston Groom, directed by Robert Zemeckis and starring Tom Hanks, Robin Wright Penn, Gary Sinese, Mykelti Williamson and Sally Field, the film Forrest Gump premiered on July 6th, 1994. Even with its special effects - Forrest is seen meeting Presidents Johnson and Kennedy, running from a napalm bombing in Vietnam and the ping-pong scenes - this is still an old fashioned movie in the best sense, eliciting a multitude of emotions as one watches the movie – for the first time or the eighth. And if there was any doubt that Tom Hanks is a brilliant actor, this film dispels any concerns.  I can’t imagine anyone else in this role.

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LILIES OF THE FIELD

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Directed by Ralph Nelson and starring Sidney Poitier and Lilia Skala, the film Lilies of the Field premiered on July 5th, 1963. Homer Smith, (Poitier), ex-GI and handyman//jack-of-all-trades is looking for work.  Mother Marie, (Skala), and her merry band of nuns are looking for a new chapel... or as Mother Superior pronounces it, “Shhapple”. So when they find each other, they all believe their prayers have been answered. This is a simple story and a great film. Poitier won an Oscar for Best Actor – the first black man to do so. Lilies of the Field is overlooked, but still great movie to pull out of the “archives” – and an added bonus – the film has a rousing version of the song Amen.

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Comedy Clips of the Week

KEVIN SPACEY

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Producer, director, screenwriter and Oscar award winning actor Kevin Spacey Fowler was born on July 26, 1959 in South Orange, New Jersey. He has starred in such movies as The Usual Suspects, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, L.A. Confidential and American Beauty. One of his many talents is uncanny impersonations of famous people. The clip below is from Inside the Actors Studio as he runs through his repertoire for James Lipton. Highly entertaining and what a mind Mr. Spacey has.

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HERMAN CAIN IS A VERY FUNNY FELLOW….RIGHT!

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If nothing else Mr. Cain has a future in improvisational/sketch comedy.

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Sports

JESSE OWENS

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On August 3rd, 1936 Jesse Owens won the 100 meter sprint in the Summer Olympics held in Berlin. This was the first of his four Gold Medals, which included the Long Jump, 200 meter sprint and as a member of the 4x 100 meter relay team. A record that wasn’t equaled until Carl Lewis did it in 1984.

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JOHNNY EVERS

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Second baseman John Joseph Evers was born on July 21st, 1883.  Known as “The Crab” for his style of play in the field, Evers is also remembered as one of the smaller players to make it in the major leagues, weighing in at 100 lbs as a rookie and never topping out at more than 130 lbs during his career.

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Dates In History

GULF OF TONKIN RESOLUTION

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On August 7, 1964 Congress passed what is now known as the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, giving President Lyndon Johnson “the power to take whatever actions he deems necessary to defend Southeast Asia, including the use of armed force.”  Although not a formal declaration of war, the Resolution was used by the Johnson Administration as the legal basis for the future conduct and escalation of the war in Vietnam.

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PT-109

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On August 2nd, 1943 the Patrol Torpedo boat skippered by future President John F. Kennedy was rammed and split in half by the Japanese destroyer Amagiri. The PT-109 sank within minutes taking two of its crew with it. The remaining 11 survivors grabbed what they could and began swimming the 3.5 miles to the deserted Plum Pudding Island - in the Pacific among the Solomon Islands. Two of the crew members were badly injured, Kennedy towing one to safety by taking the injured man’s life preserver strap in his teeth while swimming. The crew was rescued six days later after a coconut with the crew’s location carved into it was passed along to a Solomon local who passed it along to the US Navy. The coconut with its SOS message was preserved and adorned the JFK Oval Office as a paperweight.

 

Music

LOUIS ARMSTRONG

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One of the founders of jazz; musician, singer, entertainer, and trumpeter extraordinaire, Louis Daniel Armstrong was born on August 4, 1901, in New Orleans, Louisiana. Much has been written and said about “Satchmo” – genius, friend to many but close to few, comical, optimistic – whatever – to appreciate the man and his legacy listen to his music. Louis Armstrong was one of a kind.

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ADAM DURITZ

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Lead singer and founding member of The Counting Crows, Adam Duritz was born on August 1st, 1964 in Baltimore, Maryland. The son of two Jewish doctors Adam admits he is “impersonating African-Jamaican”, starting with the dreadlock hair extensions. In articles I’ve read Adam described as morose, tortured, melancholy and pretentious. And maybe he is. All I know is that when he and his band mates get together and make music something happens and it’s a good thing. The Counting Crows are still one of the best bands to see live for my money.

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Political Clips

HUNTER S. THOMPSON

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Hunter S. Thompson, the father of gonzo journalism, counter-culturalist, iconoclast, and someone who seemingly took Richard Nixon’s existence on this earth personally, was born on July 18, 1937, in Louisville, Kentucky. He was a frequent contributor to Rolling Stone, it was his book Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas that combined all that made Thompson either loved or reviled – Drugs, alcohol, guns and contempt for authority – as the protagonist and his attorney make their way through Sin City. His follow up book, Fear and Loathing on the Campaign trail ‘72, tracked that year’s Presidential election and Thompson’s ever growing hatred of President Nixon.

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NOT THAT JOE WALSH …THE CRAZY ONE

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I’ve mentioned our local (Illinois) collective Congressional embarrassment before –

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Crime

WILD BILL HICKOK

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On August 2nd, 1876, James Butler “Wild Bill” Hickok was shot and killed while playing poker in a saloon in Deadwood, located in the Dakota Territory. Prior to his final stop in Deadwood, he’d been a Union soldier during the Civil War, specifically as a scout and a marksman. After the war he became a stagecoach driver and then a lawman in Nebraska and Kansas. After turning in his badge Hickcok had toured the East with Buffalo Bill and after giving an interview with Harper’s magazine was now famous as a gunslinger – Wild Bill claiming that he had killed at least 100 men. If the number seems preposterous, it should be noted no one argued with Hickok’s claim.

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PUBLIC ENEMY #1

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On the very warm Chicago evening of July 22, 1934, John Dillinger exited the Biograph Theater after watching “Manhattan Melodrama”, (a gangster movie), starring Clark Gable, William Powell and Myrna Loy. With Dillinger was his new girlfriend, Polly Hamilton, and her “landlady” Anna Sage—“The Lady in Red”—who was actually clad in orange that evening.

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