Pages/People/Philm – Legends

I am near the end of Killing the Legends – The Lethal Danger of Celebrity – by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard. The book is excellent, there are many facts included I did know, and several new insights into the lives of all three men of which I was unaware. The book is so well-written you read along at a quick pace. The book has a few photographs, but not many; I would have enjoyed more photos.

As far as the legends are concerned, I was always fond of one, disliked the other, and was a bit ambivalent about the third. My feelings haven’t changed much after reading, and I realize I should always trust my instincts.

ELVIS was one of three films that lured me into a movie theater in 2022. The other two, Downton Abbey – A New Era, and Where the Crawdads Sing were the others. I enjoyed the latter two, but ELVIS was my favorite. Where the Crawdads Sing was a close second, and after I saw the movie, I bought and read the book.

I am reading Chicken Soup for the Soul – Best Advice I Ever Heard, now, and loving it. A few days ago, I read chapter 51 by author Laurie Davies. Her topic was advice she received from a teacher on how to overcome her fear of elementary school recess. “Walk out onto that playground like it’s yours,” the teacher told her. This is advice I sure wish I had lived by in the past when uneasy or thinking myself out of place. Maybe in my senior years I’ll manage to live by her wise words. That brings my thoughts back to Elvis. He owned the stage he performed on, but through most of his career, offstage, he was owned and controlled by others. He couldn’t escape the web they wove, and was, in the end, consumed by the prison of success.

Philm – The Nativity Story

The blessed story of Christ’s birth never grows old. I watched this again on Sunday. I can’t help crying tears of joy many times throughout this movie. I recommend this every year. It is one of the best, and rarely mentioned in the lists of Christmas movies to watch.

Even the movie trailer imparts a feeling of joy.

Philm – Risen

I watched the movie ‘Risen’ once again this week. It never fails to move me. The love of Y’shua (Jesus), for men of all races and religions, overtakes every stress and worry I have as I watch. I had to pause the movie numerous times to pray for my family, to praise the King of kings and Lord of lords, and wipe away the tears of love and joy I have for him, and through him.

The movie is violent in places and might not be suitable for younger children. It portrays in detail the brutality of occupied Jerusalem, the horror of the crucifixion, the self-promoting ambition of Pilate, the hypocrisy of the Sanhedrin, and the poverty and oppression that most of the Jewish people lived in.

Spoiler Alert: The last words in the movie, spoken by the Roman Tribune, Clavius, are what most who turn to Jesus Christ feel within their innermost spirit…

“I believe I can never be the same.”

Pages & Philm – Vanity Fair

I’ve been watching, and enjoying, an Amazon Prime Original of William Makepeace Thackeray’s Vanity Fair.

I have also found a free Librivox  recording of Vanity Fair. I’m about to start Chapter One today. I can listen on my tablet as I work at completing odds and ends around the house. Librivox is a wonderful site filled with free audiobooks of public domain works. There are many classics available for your listening pleasure on Librivox. Since I’ve never read Vanity Fair, I’m looking forward to meeting Becky Sharp through the audiobook as well as Amazon’s well-done series.

Philm – Young Messiah

In the past few years, I have not been inclined to waste money on going to movie theaters only to be dismayed at what is before me on the screen. Even the most careful selection often misses scenes and themes in films that I just do not care to see. The ‘Young Messiah’ is a movie I wish I had seen on the big screen. I watched it this past weekend and know it will be a movie I try to watch again at least once a year, perhaps more, much like the movie ‘The Nativity Story.’  Although there are some themes that are not Biblically correct, such as the timing of when Jesus began to bring about miracles; the story is a shining example of good film-making. I read a comment under a review that made me laugh and shake my head in agreement, to not see the movie because of possible inaccuracies of when Jesus began to do miracles is a perfect example of Christian nitpicking. The movie is very uplifting and available through DVD and many cable/On Demand channels at this time.

  • This movie contains several violent scenes that might be upsetting to small children.

Phun & Philm – Sleepovers, Scavenger Hunts and Dragons

This post is for all the wonderful people who create fun for the little people in their lives. My grandsons love scavenger hunts. It’s been awhile since they have slept over so I wanted to have a special movie night for them. First we’ll barbecue some shish kabob on the grill, then we’ll have a scavenger hunt all around the house. I’ve hidden quite a stash of items in various hiding spots, all with a movie night theme.


I’ll give each of them a basket, the first clue, and there will be some wild scampering around the house to find the treasures and the next clue.


I have several movies on hand for them to choose from tonight. One of those is Pete’s Dragon. We all saw it together a few months ago in the theater. It is now available on DVD, and because I loved the story as much as they did, I bought a copy for all of us to share. Disney Films, Robert Redford, Bryce Dallas Howard, the children who play the leading roles, along with Pete the Dragon, do a wonderful job in making this story magical.


Phavorites & Philm – McFarland & The Durrells in Corfu

One of my favorite films this year was McFarland. Released in 2015, the film is still available On Demand, Netflix, Amazon Prime, DVD, and other venues. Don’t miss this inspirational true story. Make sure and watch until the very last minute as the original McFarland Cross Country team makes a cameo appearance.

The Durrells in Corfu is another of my new favorites. Episode 1 of Season 1 premiered last Sunday evening at 8:00 on PBS, but you can find it online or On Demand also. I loved the ‘quirkiness’ of this sweet series and can’t wait for more episodes.

Phavorites – Two Philms and One Series

I recently viewed two movies on DVD. Both were quiet, thoughtful, and completely satisfying. Cedar Cove, a series on the Hallmark Channel, has also been a nice respite this summer.

Far From the Madding Crowd, by Thomas Hardy, is a beautiful love story. I have never read the novel, but will remedy that situation after watching the movie based on the book. The film was beautiful; the story satisfying and believable.

I loved the ‘Age of Adaline”, a story of a young woman who lives her life without aging. The premise might be way out there, but the storyline makes it all believable. It was interesting to see Harrison Ford in a non-leading man role.

Cedar Cove is a television series on the Hallmark station based on the books of Debbie Macomber. I missed the first two seasons, but was able to purchase the first through Amazon at a great price. Andie McDowell is terrific as the heroine and small town judge.

Philm & Painting – Woman In Gold

I had high hopes for this film and it did not disappoint. If you savor stories of victory over the establishment, if you feel we should all be reminded of the Holocaust to prevent the atrocities from happening again, and if you cheer for people who persevere even when all the odds are against them, you will LOVE this motion picture. “Woman in Gold” is widely available for home viewing at this time. I LOVED it.

A great article was written by the New York Times: The Woman in Gold.

Philm & Phavorites – Enchanted April and the Guttenberg Library

“To Those Who Appreciate Wisteria and Sunshine. Small mediaeval Italian Castle on the shores of the Mediterranean to be Let furnished for the month of April. Necessary servants remain. Z, Box 1000, The Times.”

This advertisement for an Italian Castle enchants me and gives me cause to dream. In a dreary, cold winter in England, two ladies, Rose and Lotty, become friends and persevere through many doubts to rent an Italian castle in April. It makes no difference that the book and movie are set in the era between the World Wars, when Lotty opens her window on the gardens of San Salvatore, I am there too.

The first time I was captivated by the story of Enchanted April was through the movie. The novel by Elizabeth Von Arnim, written in 1922, was harder to find. It is available in print again, and is also available free through the Guttenberg Library.

I’ve enjoyed browsing through the Guttenberg Library, searching out old stories and books I read as a child. If you love vintage stories, but can’t find the books you would love to read one more time, search for the title in the Guttenberg Library.

The score for Enchanted April is also beautiful, listen for a moment—

Phavorites & Philm – Three Christmas Favorites

These are three of my favorite Christmas films. Without fail, I watch them every year. “The Nativity Story” is hands down my favorite. I have it on DVD, and even watch it throughout the year.

“The Christmas Story” is also a favorite. One or another channels usually plays this all day long on Christmas. We have no problem dropping in and out on Ralphie and his family throughout the day. It doesn’t matter that we have seen it over and over again for years…we still laugh at our favorite parts. Flick licking the frozen pole never fails to make us laugh and wince at the same time.

“A Christmas Carol” starring a favorite of mine, George C. Scott, is also required viewing in our home. I think it the best version, but perhaps you have a different favorite of this timeless tale.

Phavorites & Philm – The Sound of Music

I have many favorite films, but the “Sound of Music,” is my “Go-To ” choice when I am ill, anxious, or feeling blue. I know it might sound odd, but in all truth, I am sure I have seen this favorite two dozen times plus some. What are your favorite “Pick-Me-Up ” films or books? With all the turmoil surrounding us, the chaos that seems to be erupting at a global scale, perhaps we need to take an hour or two, sit down, and immerse ourselves in what makes us sing or smile.

The Sound of Music

“When the Lord closes a door, somewhere He opens a window.”

~ Maria, The Sound of Music

Philm – Noah

While I absolutely loved yesterday’s feature “philm” of “God is not Dead,” I’m on the opposite side of the fence concerning today’s review. I’m not including the official trailer of “Noah” because I pretty much disliked this whole attempt of portraying one of the greatest of Bible stories on the big screen. I thought the movie was horribly done, and filled with imaginary content that neither added to the story, or was in any way near truth. I am only glad I did not see this in the theater, and only wasted a little over a dollar to rent it through Redbox.

Philm – Twelve Years a Slave

Twelve Years a Slave won this year’s Oscar for best picture. I recently viewed the movie “On Demand.” I found it to be a good representation of this time in the history of the United States. What struck me most was the paragraphs of explanation at the end of the movie: most free people of color who were kidnapped and sold into slavery never escaped from that bondage, Solomon Northrup was an exception to those percentages. The movie is rated “R” due to extreme violence, brief nudity and some brief sexual situations.

I have seen very few movies in the recent years, but chose to see this one because of it’s historical content. I am glad I did. It opened up my eyes to a whole new horrific facet of life as a person of color in that period of history, the possibility of being kidnapped and sold into slavery.

It’s easy to shake our head and go about our days aware of the past, but also relieved it is just that, the past. Unfortunately, slavery still exists around the globe in different forms, people are used as “property” all over the world.

Slavery in the Modern Day World

I don’t know what is to be done about modern-day slavery, but as in all things, the first step in solving a problem is to bring a sense of awareness of the issue to more people.