Weekly Ramble No. 19

I blazed through Lee Child’s One Shot in the space of a couple days. It was the book that the first Tom Cruise film Jack Reacher was loosely based on. The film was so forgettable that I can’t do a Book versus Movie comparison, but I did enjoy the book and I can understand while it was chosen as the starting point for a potential film franchise.

I then moved on to The Family Corleone – a book Hollywood bigwigs tried to stop being published. It was written by Ed Falco – uncle of Edie Falco, who played Tony Soprano’s wife in The Sopranos and is a prequel to Mario Puzo’s The Godfather. It is based on an unfilmed screenplay by Puzo, who died in 1999.

The novel is set in New York during the Great Depression and explains how Vito Corleone rises to become the most powerful Don ruling over the five families in the city after a war between Sicilians with some help from the Irish. It also features troublesome son number one in the form of Sonny and how he eventually makes a great sacrifice to come under the wing of his pop and join the organization. The other sons and daughters are too young to really feature all that much. Apart from adopted son Tom Hagen that is, who is destined in The Godfather to become the first non-Sicilian consigliere.

Man mountain and eventually Vito’s chief henchman, Luca Brasi, also features heavily and his awful back story, only hinted at in Puzo’s book, is laid out in grusome detail. It is perhaps the story of Luca Brasi, the conflict with Giuseppe Mariposa and the ultimate fumbled assassination attempt by the Irish that are the most interesting things in this book. The style is supposed to be similar to Puzo’s original, but having not read the original yet, I can’t comment. Suffice to say I really enjoyed it and it reminded me how good the films are.

This week I also got back into writing my new novel and so lots of other things I might otherwise write about didn’t happen. In terms of tunes I have been catching up with Ladytron while doing my writing and continuing to enjoy Adam Buxton’s podcast.

On the telly box I’ve been enjoying Keith and Paddy’s Picture Show on ITV. It’s film-based comedy nonsense but I can tell that they love the films they are parodying. Dr Who has also been very good so far. I was going to do an episode by episode ramble, but I’ve talked myself out of it.

One thing I have noticed though is how ‘down with the kids’ the scripts are in this series – there seems to have been a concerted effort to mention things like YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Google, Netflix etc. I’m not sure how this fits in with the BBC’s rules about advertising but it certainly helps sell the now-ness of the show. It seems like this season is building up to something very special between the Doctor, Missy and the return of the Master. Missy is the Master so I’m curious to find out quite what the dealio is there.

Just one other thing about Dr Who before I move on – and I have to credit my boss with this observation – why was the Pope talking Italian if the TARDIS translates everything into English. My flippant reply was that it only translates alien tongues, but then I realised that the Pompeii episode proves it can and does do Italian. I won’t mention my huffiness over the fact that the Doctor emails himself from inside a computer simulation which was ‘too realistic’, yeah right, whatever… and how come the blind doctor can read the blummin’ email… and.. and…

Finally, in terms of films the week was rather barren. I watched Bridget Jones’s Baby with Siggy and suspect I enjoyed it more than she did. I saw the first sequel on my birthday when it came out at the cinema because there was fuck all else to watch, and would say that this is just as good. You just have to lower your expectations and have a drink to enjoy it. Which is coincidentally what I did for Alien: Covenant.

(Image from Unsplash – Sticker Mule)

 

 

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