Federico Fellini born 1/20/20

Fellini is one of the greatest directors. Start with 8 1/2 or Amarcord.

Criterion has a great Felini box set. They also have some of his films online on the Criterion Channel.

Ronnie Spector

Ronnie Spector, lead singer of the Ronettes on many fine records in the 1960s died yesterday

Sidney Poitier’s first film was No Way Out

No Way Out (1950) is an excellent film that starred Richard Widmark and Sidney Poitier who died today. It was Poitier’s film debut. It was released on DVD in 2006 as part of the Fox Film Noir series. It’s an excellent film and not well known today.

Alex Chilton

Alex Chilton was born on December 28, 1950. He had three music careers. He was a teenage star with the Box Tops in the 1960s and a great but not popular at the time run with Big Star. He later had a solo career.

There’s a fine book about him A Man Called Destruction by Holly George-Warren. There’s a fine film about Big Star called Big Star: Nothing Can Hurt Me. The Replacements recorded a song about him.

JFK assassination – 11/22/63

I was in fifth grade when Kennedy was assassinated. It was a “9/11” or “Pearl Harbor” moment for anyone old enough to know what was going on. I recall being sent home from school. It was a lot more shocking then than it would be now when gun violence is much more frequent.

I saw Kennedy when he ran for president. I was seven so I don’t remember what he said. I do remember that his hair was a bright rust color.

Manos: The Hands of Fate

“Manos: The Hands of Fate” was released on this day in 1966. It is one of the worst films ever and was the subject of a well-known Mystery Science Theater 3000 episode. It’s available on DVD and Blu-ray.