My screenwriting pal Lloyd Fonvielle had posted a wonderful piece (at his blog, mardecortesbaja.com) on John Ford’s Wagon Master (1950), which was released on Region 1 DVD two weeks ago and because I didn’t have time to peruse it thoroughly I bookmarked it for a later look-see. Now, when I try to bring it up I get an error message that reads: “This blog is on hold because its bandwidth has been exceeded. Please contact your blog provider.”
Okay, in the first place—I don’t know who my blog provider is. I suppose in the case of Thrilling Days of Yesteryear it would be Blogger, but I don’t know what the hell they can do about this since Lloyd uses another host for his blog (something called www.blogware.com, since I had to sign up with it one time in order to post some heady praise for something he wrote). Second, how does one put a blog “on hold”? And if they’re on hold, do they play music while you’re waiting to make a connection? (I don’t even want to get started on the phone tree.)
I mention Lloyd’s piece because I had originally planned to watch and do a write-up on the film as part of this blog’s rapidly-becoming-so-popular-it’s-now-eating-at-the-kewl-kidz-table feature, Region 2 Cinema. This idea was, of course, kicked around when the only available evidence of Wagon Master being on DVD was part of the R-K-O Collection at editions montparnasse (Le Convoi des Braves). So, now that the chore of writing an essay has been rendered moot on my end, I can check it off my “To Do” list—along with these other interesting articles:
Stacia, the classic movies doyenne who toils (and as a result, shames practically every classic film blogger in the process) at She Blogged by Night, has a nice essay on the Perry Mason film series churned out by Warner Bros. from 1934 to 1937. Again, I had planned to do something along similar lines so I’m glad she took the initiative—it’s a most worthwhile read.
“Uncle” Sam Taylor takes the WABAC machine to 1973 for a well-written look at Emperor of the North (1973; a.k.a. Emperor of the North Pole)—the Depression-era battle o’wills between King Hobo Lee Marvin and railroad conductor Ernest Borgnine. It’s one of my favorite Robert Aldrich films, and I had every intention of revisiting it when I bought it on DVD back in 2006. So a special shout-out to Samuel for doing the heavy lifting.
In breaking television news, Rick Brooks just e-mailed (via Facebook) to inform me Encore Westerns is adding a slew of vintage Westerns to the lineup beginning in January 2010 (this news was originally posted on the Classic Horror Film Board by none other than Lon Chaney expert Michael Blake). Encore is adding seasons 7-11 of Gunsmoke (the hour-long black-and-whites), plus Have Gun – Will Travel and The Virginian. The classic half-hour oater Lawman will join these shows in July, with Wagon Train to follow in January 2011 (you like how I tied this to the original Wagon Master news?) and Rawhide and