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Posts Tagged ‘Merv Griffin’

Jack Lemmon
This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on WordPress

Jack Lemmon to me at least and I bet a lot of other people who knew him and are familiar with him would say was that he was a professional comedian who didn’t do standup. At least on a regular basis, but his sense of humor, timing and spontaneity when it came to humor and his improvisation was great and gave him comedic abilities. That are about as good as we’ve ever seen in Hollywood. The man deserves to be in Comedy Hall of Fame if there is such a thing. And you see a lot of that in this interview without a script. Merv Griffin giving him questions that aren’t even intended to have humorous responses. And Jack answering the questions seriously, but using humor to make his points.

I covered China Syndrome last night, but they really did a great movie and made a great movie about a subject that by 1978 and early 1979 I’m not sure a lot of Americans were thinking about and were worried about. Which was nuclear power and what could happen when nuclear power plants aren’t managed well enough and where profits are put ahead of safety. Which is about as progressive or socialist even as you’ll ever hear me talk. But this was movie that had to be done and let people know about this issue. And again Three Mile Island happens just a month after this interview was conducted in early 79.

China Syndrome wasn’t saying that nuclear power was bad or that corporations were bad. What they were talking about was the dangers of nuclear when it is not managed properly and the potential consequences that can come when it is not managed properly. And in an area like Los Angeles with roughly fifteen-million people with four-million of the city and eight-millions in LA County that is a lot of people who could potentially be seriously injured with injuries that they’ll never recover from. If not killed if you have a major nuclear power accident. And that is what this movie was talking about.

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Easy Rider

Easy Rider


This post was originally posted at The New Democrat Plus

There is such a thing as being ahead of your time, but I don’t think that applies to Dennis Hopper. Who I consider to be a baby boomer born in the mid-1930s, I believe 1936. He is obviously not a boomer, but he fits into that generation so well, especially the Hippie Culture, the Counter Culture of the 1960s. And a lot if not most of his movies from the 1960s and 70s, had something to do with the current culture of that era and a lot of them were about Hippie Culture. So if he had a movie that didn’t do very well in that era and it was about Hippies, it probably wasn’t because Dennis was ahead of his time. That argument could’ve been made about someone making a counter-culture movie in 1955 or so. But you make a movie like that in the late 1960s and early 1970s, you’re in the perfect time frame for that movie.

So Dennis’s problem with The Last Movie, perhaps was the title, but anyway it might just have been that the movie wasn’t very good. And I’m saying this as someone who is a big Hopper fan and have liked a lot of his movies. As far as this interview, classic Dennis Hopper I believe, at least from that era. I mean he just did Easy Rider in 1969 and he walks onto the stage as a Hippie drifter. Which is essentially what he played in Easy Rider. He is a man for his times, as he was back then and is still today. So whether he doesn’t do as well as he wants to, it just might be because the movie or his performance wasn’t as good as it needed to be for him to do as well as expected to do. It is easy to put it on the audience, or people you work with, but harder to look at yourself to see where you came up short.

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Jane Fonda
Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

I would be lying if I said I had any idea who the hell Roger Vadim is other than what I got out of this video. And I only like to lie when I’m in trouble. You know being questioned by police, on the stand being cross-examined. And if you are wondering how I get away with that. I cross my fingers when I’m put under oath and say “I do”. But Jane Fonda is very well-known and for good reasons. A beautiful baby-face adorable actress with a very quick wit and sense of humor. As well as intelligence that allows for her to play all sorts of characters that her career indicates that she has.

Merv Griffin Show: Jane Fonda & Roger Vadim in 1967

 

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MLK
Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

One of the things I respect most about Dr. Martin L. King is that even though he must have had a lot of at least inside anger because of all the racism and racial discrimination that he and the African-American community endured in this period, that because he had so much class, intelligence and was such a peaceful man, that he generally did not show it. And instead used his intelligence based on the facts to bring so many people of multiple races behind his cause. Instead of using his anger and dividing the country even further. Dr. King was a true leader and used whatever anger he must felt in a positive sense as a motivator to stay on course and move his movement in the right direction. And get the people behind him to accomplish his goals. And this was from people of multiple races and not just of African and European descent. But people of all races behind him.
Merv Griffin Show: Martin Luther King in 1967

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Source: Merv Griffin Show

Source: Merv Griffin Show: U.S. Senator Robert F. Kennedy Interview- Civil Unrest, Vietnam in 1967

Bobby Kennedy who wasn’t a Baby Boomer, more of a depression baby, doing a good job speaking for the Baby Boom generation. Not the whole generation, but certainly the New Left that came of age in the 1960s and early 1970s. Whose parents were from the Silent Generation and World War II, who saw America except for the Counter-Culture Movement as just fine the way it was and were happy with the status quo. Because that is what they grew up with and all they knew. Now seeing their kids as people who came of age during the Vietnam War and the civil rights movement. And seeing all sorts of poverty in America and thinking they could get involved in these things and change America for the good. Who saw the status quo in American life as not worth conserving. And wanted to create a new America for themselves.

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