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Showing posts from March, 2021

Cagney & Lacey: Breaking the "Gless" Ceiling

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At the start of Women’s history month, we celebrated the shattering of the glass ceiling with TheArchive ’s Decoy - the first television series to feature a policewoman as its syndicated star. Beverly Garland solidified her place in history as a cinematic trailblazer - offering women of the '50s an empowered and respected female hero of the silver screen; a role model whose story was worth telling week after week! Garland made way for many other female “TV cops” but it took over 16 years! While Angie Dickinson did arrest our hearts in the late 70’s in Police Woman , that did not necessarily open the flood gates overnight. It took years until we had the likes of Helen Mirren in Prime Suspect , S. Epatha Merkerson and Mariska Hargitay in Law and Order , and most recently Regina King in Watchmen .  While there have been other greats, we thought it would be interesting to focus on a truly untapped space, the female buddy cop TV drama. It wasn’t until 1982 that we finally saw the famil

David Mamet Couldn’t Pass Over a New York Times Review of When Do We Eat?

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As Passover motion pictures go, When Do We Eat? is definitely a memorable one that could also rub some people the wrong way. With the tagline, “My big fat Jewish Seder” no doubt the viewer has a sense of what’s on the table. And it’s hard to dispute Jmerica.com whose review of the movie exalts it as, “History’s most hilarious Passover comedy.” That is only if Shalom Sesame: It's Passover, Grover! Is not as funny as it potentially sounds. That being said, Salvador Litvak's  When Do We Eat?  is well worth the watch if only to get a better sense of the “mishegas” (Yiddish for crazy) that can transpire when family gets together to celebrate the holidays; in this particular case, the antics around the Passover dinner table. In fact, David Mamet, in an open letter lambasting a New York Times critic who clearly didn’t get the film, actually found it “raucously funny.” And if the writer of The Untouchables feels that way, then critics be warned: if you pull a knife, you know what Mame

Post-Princess Power Play: Princess in Love

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The power of the British Crown is undeniable and has been for centuries.  Its influence on pop culture is no exception. And now with the parallels being drawn between Princess Diana and Meghan Markle, history certainly repeats, but this time the Crown may be the one influenced. It’s certainly on its heels in terms of public perception.  As such, we decided to revisit a movie from TheArchive , a sudden timely piece of nostalgia, Princess in Love , and anyone who loves multiple award-winning The Crown on Netflix, will undoubtedly get a kick out of this movie which aired on CBS 25 years ago.  It aired only one year before Princess Di’s untimely death. Recounting the true-life story of the rollercoaster love affair between Captain James Hewitt and Lady Diana Spencer, Princess in Love suggests that this relationship “destroyed a royal marriage and stunned the British monarchy.” Today we know that the Royals, still an obsessive figment of media attention and global fandom, and no less a tou

Decoy: A Misplaced Milestone in History

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Uncover the lost hero of ’50s television — Patricia “Casey” Jones. DECOY: A Misplaced Milestone in History • Audrey L. Hamm •  In 1957, Beverly Garland pioneered the starring role of ‘Casey’ in the short-lived television series, DECOY (1957-1958). Producing only 39 episodes, Decoy was the first-of-its-kind to feature a policewoman as its syndicated star. Garland solidified her place in history as a cinematic first for women, yet remains largely unknown by American audiences.  Casey Jones offered women of the '50s an empowered and respected, female hero of the silver screen; a role model, whose story was worth telling week after week! Why has it been so decidedly forgotten?  Perhaps a lack of interest in women’s rights, at the time, made it difficult to sustain meaningful longevity in the hearts of America. The discussion and celebration of women is finally making its way out of the shadows and with it, our understanding of history can evolve as well. It is ess

Pelé and A Sports Movie Rarity

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Rick King wrote and directed a fair number of films including The Killing Time starring Beau Bridges and Kiefer Sutherland . None of them were hits per se, though he did win a CableAce Award for his work as director on miniseries Vietnam War Story .  King was also just a writer on certain projects including Point Break which did go on to be a significant hit and spawned a remake just a few years ago.  He explored some similar territory throughout his work, most notably, the “unlikely buddy” dynamic.  In Point Break for example, Keanu Reeves (who plays Utah) gets seemingly bromanced but also blackmailed into a friendship with criminal Bodhi, played by Patrick Swayze. As they were both athletes, therein developed a certain level of camaraderie and respect, despite the two being on very different sides of the law. In another notable Rick King sports film Hotshot , the legendary Brazilian football (soccer) great and erstwhile thespian Pelé, plays a forgotten champion. He has turned h