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Mt. Holz Science Fiction Society 03/20/20 -- Vol. 38, No. 38, Whole Number 2111
Table of Contents
Mini-Reviews, Part 6 (film reviews by Mark R. Leeper):
And still more mini-reviews:
MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS: This is the somewhat fictionalized telling of the political chess game between the forces of Mary Stuart against those of Queen Elizabeth of England. Production Designer James Menifold has given us an authentic feel of the period. The film is one of cold stony people on a cold, stony landscape. There is some explicit sexual content that somehow feels a little dislocated. Americans and even some Brits are recommended to be prepared for a deluge of names and faces to keep straight. There are many groomed the same and many dressed the same. Rating: high +1 (-4 to +4) or 6/10
HARRIET: [Points of history are from the point of view presented in the film.] In the new biopic HARRIET, Tubman goes from being an uneducated slave girl to being a fighter and strategist, an action hero, a warrior, and a rhetorician. In a matter of only a few months she escapes from the plantation where she is, walks over a hundred miles of slave territory, and organizes a raid on her old plantation to free some of her family left behind in her first escape. Her raids eventually liberated in all hundreds of slaves. Her knowledge of the safest routes saved hundreds of lives. One of the more interesting aspects of the film is how church music and sermons in some cases encouraged the slaves to cooperate with their so-called masters and some sermons encouraged reaching for freedom. Rating: high +2 (-4 to +4) or 8/10
QUEEN AND SLIM: This is a Bonnie-and-Clyde story told in a modern setting. Queen and her boy friend Slim do nothing illegal but a confrontation with a Kentucky traffic cop leaves two policemen dead. They have a sort of road odyssey seeing how blacks live. They are trying to get to Cuba. And they work on their problems, personal and family, and when one starts planning, the other seems not to cooperate. Rating: +1 (-4 to +4) or 6/10
Warp Core Cafe Science Fiction Picture Game (sent by Gregory Frederick):
A friend sent this picture and asked me if I could identify most or all of the science-fiction characters in it. He said I might be bored now that I am retired and stuck at home due to this virus. You may find it interesting:
Dogs and Cats (letter of comment by Dorothy J. Heydt):
In response to the quotation at the end of the 03/13/20 issue of the MT VOID, Dorothy J. Heydt writes:
"You may have a dog that won't sit up, roll over or even cook breakfast, not because she's too stupid to learn how but because she's too smart to bother. [-Rick Horowitz]"
You have just described a cat. [-djh]
This Week's Reading (book comments by Evelyn C. Leeper):
Normally this week I would have been reporting on the Bryn Mawr book sale in Princeton, but due to the current situation, their planned five-day sale was truncated to a day and a half. The Princeton Day School was shutting down and asked/told the sale organizers that they must close by 3PM Friday. This meant only the preview day on Thursday, and a little more than a half day on Friday. (Ironically, it probably also meant that Friday would be more crowded than usual.) So this clinched it for us, and we decided not to go this year. I suspect the East Brunswick Library book sale at the end of March will also be cancelled. (It's held in a mall, which would make it worse.) I'm hoping things normalize by the time of the Old Bridge Library sale in June, especially since they did not have one last year because of the remodeling of the library.
And of course, between when I wrote that (03/12/20) and when this issue appears, a whole lot has changed. Clearly the East Brunswick sale won't happen, but here in NJ, all the restaurants, libraries, and theaters are closed as well (among other businesses). However, delivery services such as USPS, UPS, and FedEx are still running, so I decided to treat myself to an order of books on-line to replace the sales. (It certainly makes more sense than ordering a year's supply of toilet paper.)
Late(r)-breaking news: Many brick-and-mortar bookstores are closing at least temporarily. Those affecting the area where we are (NJ) include Second Time Books in Mount Laurel and the Strand Bookstore in New York.
One thought that has nothing to do with books: when someone suggested helping out elderly neighbors by shopping for them, I started to think of who I might help out--and then realize that *I* am the elderly neighbor. :-( [-ecl]
Mark Leeper email@example.com Quote of the Week: My dog is usually pleased with what I do, because she is not infected with the concept of what I "should" be doing. --Lonzo IdolswineTweet
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