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Celil Parker "Jerry Parker" (région de l'Abitibi, QC)

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Elgar Violin Concerto - Serenade for Strings
Elgar Violin Concerto - Serenade for Strings
Price: CDN$ 22.05
16 used & new from CDN$ 16.58

5.0 out of 5 stars James Ehnes, One of the Violin Greats of These Times, Has Made Two Recordings of the Elgar Violin Concerto!, July 22 2014
James Ehnes, a distinguished Manitoban and one of the great violinists of these times internationally as well as in his homeland, the Dominion of Canada, has wide musical affinities, including much music from the Romantic era. Thus it may be less than surprising that there are TWO recordings of Ehnes playing Elgar's great violin concerto. One is the CD of Amazon's entry, which Sir Andrew Davis (well known for his devotion to Elgar's music) conducts. There is a considerably less well-known recording recently made available of the work in which Ehnes' playing is paired with the British Broadcasting Corporation's B.B.C. National Orchestra of Wales (B.B.C. Music BBCM-372-DDD), which couples the concerto with another of Elgar's works, in this case "The Spirit of England".

Those who have a subscription to the excellent music magazine, "B.B.C. Music Magazine" (or who buy it on the newsstand) and who have retained vol. 22, no. 10 (for July 2014), or at least the free CD that it has come with, will have this recording already. If they do, reluctance to obtain the Onyx recording also would be understandable. On the other hand, someone who has neither recording can search for the July 2014 issue of "B.B.C. Music Magazine" in a library and there play the CD of the Ehnes/Atherton recording to judge for himself whether s/he wishes at all to obtain a recording with Ehnes as the soloist in this particular work.

Happy listening to either (or both) of Ehnes' recordings of Elgar's Violin Concerto!

Fred: The Movie
Fred: The Movie
Price: CDN$ 10.93
8 used & new from CDN$ 6.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Weird and Frantic All at Once: Are You Ready for Freddie the Wailing, Flailing Freak-Out?, April 2 2014
This review is from: Fred: The Movie (DVD)
Lucas Cruickshank, the eponymous protagonist of "Fred, the Movie" as a teenager is a boy of irresistibly epicene beauty. It is not often, however, in this madcap movie, that there is much of any real opportunity to appreciate suchlike of his pleasing physical assets, except for the rarest moments of smiling calm. That is because the character Fred is in a state of hyper-active, utter mania almost all of the time, grimacing, bounding about, and screeching seemingly uncontrollably. I can understand how many viewers who have commented on this film detest the entire thing as rubbish. However, if one takes the film on its own farcical terms, it is quite endearing. Lucas Cruikshank, if his voice is anything in reality as it is in the movie in which he plays this crazed fifteen-years-old junior high school boy, has yet, so far as his voice is concerned, to complete puberty, though he looks decidedly adolescent enough. More likely, the youthful actor's voice has undergone sonic manipulation. The kid certainly knows how to do frolic acrobatically, leaping and dancing to unbelievably energetic effect!

I watched this oddity in a state of attempted disbelief, having to turn down the volume when Fred/Lucas' screeching became too ear-splitting. Elsewhere there are accounts of the zanily exaggerated antics through which the movie's plot (such as it is) puts Fred, so I won't bother here to do the same. It is not a film that I would want to view often, maybe once or twice more during the length of life left to me. Despite that, this movie has a maniacally energetic, hysterical charm all of its own. Anyway, there are few motion pictures of its kind, beyond those of the likes starring, variously, Abbott and Costello, Jerry Lewis, and the Keystone Cops, or maybe occasionally early Eddie Cantor or Marx Brothers, in the company of some of whom, however, it probably is improper to place Cruikshank; maybe he is no more than a screaming human equivalent of the advertising world's animated "Energizer Bunny". I suspect that "Fred, the Movie" will endure as a "party film" and a delightful kiddies' treat, or simply in a niche for the cinematically bizarre.

Pianese Nunzio - 14 Anni A Maggio
Pianese Nunzio - 14 Anni A Maggio
DVD ~ Fabrizio Bentivoglio
Offered by Vecosell
Price: CDN$ 15.59
5 used & new from CDN$ 15.59

4.0 out of 5 stars An Handsome Teenage Boy's Singing and Good Looks Alike Provoke Love and Ensuing Trouble for a Crime-Fighting Italian Priest, Feb. 1 2014
I first saw this film, "Nunzio Pianese, 14 anni a maggio" (to put the eponymous boy's first and last names back into normal sequence within the title, which reverses them, as the officialdom portrayed prefers), marketed in English as titled "Sacred Silence", when it came out or close to that, at an international gay film festival ("Images + Nations") which takes place yearly in Montréal. The memory of this film, so broodingly intimate and mysteriously full of tension between the homey and spacious interior of the presbytery (priest's residence) and the forebodingly looming worlds, outside, of crime, of corrupted law and politics, of sacred and secular singing, and of the Italian pop music industry, is very striking. It is very gratifying to be able to see the film as frequently as I desire by means of the particular DVD edition (Picture This! Home Video PTHV-5091, bearing the ISBN 1-893410-22-6, in Italian with English subtitles) which I chose to obtain. Having visited Naples twice in the early 1960s, while in the U.S. Navy, it also is for me a pleasure, as it will be for other viewers, to see in this movie so many images of the city's rather seedy but colourful, crowded, and lively street life.

There is constant suspense about what finally begins to transpire by the long-anticipated ending of the film, when disaster is about to befall the brave priest (compromisingly tainted by his ephebophile sexual proclivity) and the boy, Nunzio Pianese, whose whole situation will change as the film progresses. During all this, Nunzio has been attaining pop music star status as a skilled celebrity "boy singer" (going by the show-business name of "Nino Pinis"), his pleasing adolescent beauty enhancing his public appeal, much as it has provoked the priest's illicit love for him.

The boy, who, essentially, is developing heterosexually despite his abnormal situation, accedes to the priest's sexual desires from respect and friendship for the adult man rather than from youthful passion or from any incipient homosexual or bisexual orientation on young Nunzio's own part. The city's corrupt criminal forces, and the local government authorities who facilitate in their undertakings, ensnare the priest, having learned of his scandalous sexual activites, in order to end the cleric's reforming efforts against their joint municipal turpitude, and also entrap the boy, whom they manoeuvre into betraying the priest who loves him and who has taken such an interest in furthering his musical attainments.

The film ends as the forces against the priest are closing in on him unawares. While some have found the slow development of the motion picture's action tiresome, my perception is that this gradual working out of the plight of the priest and of Nunzio, and of the depiction of the violence and corruption that surrounds them, make the hovering menace of the film's conclusion all the more effective.

The Nicolas Cage Collection (Bilingual)
The Nicolas Cage Collection (Bilingual)
DVD ~ Nicolas Cage
Offered by Now Showing DVD's
Price: CDN$ 15.70
10 used & new from CDN$ 15.35

3.0 out of 5 stars Why This Choice from among Cage's Films?, Jan. 13 2014
I like some of Nicolas Cage's work. That is because he can be quite a fine comedian. For the heavier roles, though, especially those in "action films" which entirely comprise the kind on this collection, Cage has many rivals among actors who fare better with such parts. Admittedly, I am not a big fan of action films except for certain, undeniably good ones (starring the likes of Al Pacino, for example, or even Colin Farrell). As for including on this DVD the potboiler, "World Trade Center", even when that film was made, it seemed to be merely, obviously and odiously, a 9-11 propaganda piece; many people even at the point at which that motion picture was made already were aware of more likely accounts of what really happened at, and to, those Twin Towers.

The three films that I would have selected would be "Raising Arizona", a very endearing comedy, indeed, as well as "Valley Girl" and "Trapped in Paradise". They are from early, or relatively so, in Cage's career, when he was both inclined to do comedy and was, quite convincingly, a ruggedly macho young lover; Cage should have remained on the path of hilarity! For a DVD collection of Cage's films, however, which does exist, there is a good compilation, also titled "Nicolas Gage Collection", which appears on a 4-disc DVD set on the M.G.M. label and an alternative from M.G.M. gets three of those four films, excluding "Valley Girl", onto a single DVD. That 4-discs includes, mostly, some cherishable comic films starring Cage, namely, besides "Valley Girl" (already mentioned), also "Honeymoon in Vegas", "Leaving Las Vegas", and "Moonstruck". Many others, though, won't agree with me and truly will savour, above all, Nicholas Cage's action films, more than I ever would do so. The set under review is the one for them.

NEW Exils (DVD)
NEW Exils (DVD)
5 used & new from CDN$ 32.46

5.0 out of 5 stars Two Raffish Franco-Arabs, Ardently Lovers, Take a Waywardly Winding Trip, Mostly Hiking, to Their Ancestral Algeria, Dec 25 2013
This review is from: NEW Exils (DVD) (DVD)
This is a lovely film. It is a "road movie" (mostly afoot) about a twenty-something Arab couple seeking their roots in their parents' Algeria, where they were born but barely can recall from childhood memories, very idealised ones, of that nation. On the way there is an interesting traipse through Morocco, and, before that, some sensuous and picturesque adventures and scenery crossing Spain.

Romain Duris outdoes himself in every way. His acting as the intensely fervent, possessive lover is all that one can desire. His body is, all of it, just what many viewers may desire, too. In fact, the film starts showing him at a window in Paris, sweltering in heat and humidity, as the camera shows first a sweaty patch of his skin, then gradually pulls back to reveal more and more of the full dorsal nakedness, then, when Duris turns to face the viewer, the utterly full frontal nudity of his splendidly fit (muscularly sinewy rather than bulky), nicely hirsute body. The camera truly makes love to Duris! The viewer, female or gay male, may wish to do the same. This is one of the most celebrated of Roman Duris' many nude scenes in his movies, films as sensuous as they are artistic, which, on both counts, certainly is the case for "Exils".

Exils
Exils
DVD ~ DVD
Price: CDN$ 28.32
9 used & new from CDN$ 9.99

5.0 out of 5 stars This Film Truly Fascinates with All the Variety of Culture, Religion & Terrain That One Could Want, Plus Duris' Virile Nudity---, Dec 25 2013
This review is from: Exils (DVD)
This is a lovely film. It is a "road movie" (mostly afoot) about a twenty-something Arab couple seeking their roots in their parents' Algeria, where they were born but barely can recall from childhood memories, very idealised ones, of that nation. On the way there is an interesting traipse through Morocco, and, before that, some sensuous and picturesque adventures and scenery crossing Spain.

Romain Duris outdoes himself in every way. His acting as the intensely fervent, possessive lover is all that one can desire. His body is, all of it, just what many viewers may desire, too. In fact, the film starts showing him at a window in Paris, sweltering in heat and humidity, as the camera shows first a sweaty patch of his skin, then gradually pulls back to reveal more and more of the full dorsal nakedness, then, when Duris turns to face the viewer, the utterly full frontal nudity of his splendidly fit (muscularly sinewy rather than bulky), nicely hirsute body. The camera truly makes love to Duris! The viewer, female or gay male, may wish to do the same. This is one of the most celebrated of Roman Duris' many nude scenes in his movies, films as sensuous as they are artistic, which, on both counts, certainly is the case for "Exils".

Der Entkleidete Hollander. the Undressed Dutchman
Der Entkleidete Hollander. the Undressed Dutchman
by Jan (Photographer) Swinkels
Edition: Paperback
2 used & new from CDN$ 84.40

5.0 out of 5 stars This Is One of the Most Exceptional Books Celebrating the Beauty of the Male Nude That One Ever Could Hope to Acquire, Aug. 6 2013
Photographer Jan Swinkels' "Der Entkleidete Holländer" ("The Undressed Dutchman"), an exquisite photo-book beautifully produced and printed, ought to be a published collection of b&w photos of male nudes much better known than it seems to be. It has become somewhat scarce, at least here in North America, since its publication, in the series, "Borderline" (Verlag N. Kosmowski, Berlin, ISBN 3-926184-13-2, quite large format paperback), in 1988. Luckily, I found my replacement copy (for the one with which I so foolishly had parted many years before), at a good price, but it is worth several times what I paid the "second time 'round".

The cover photo and other views within the volume of the same model, i.e., sweetly athletic-looking John Hartman (very Mediterranean in appearance, belying his name), had been burnt indelibly into my memory, and so eventually, after numerous efforts seeking affordably the book, I found and purchased it, having such an ardent desire once more to have the photos of Hartman and of some of the other models in the book's pages. Swinkels names his non-professional models, all from among the readership of a Dutch magazine, "The Gay Krant", a publishing venture in the south of Holland, located near the farm where Swinkels lives. The photographer is best known for his camera work in theatre and the entertainment industry, but a gay sensibility, whether his own or only cannily gauged for those who consume such art done for "The Gay Krant", comes across with great virtuosity. Those readers, obviously just from some of their names, are not all ethnic Netherlanders, although most of them, with Dutch/Flemish names, indeed are just that.

There is a pleasing variety of "physical types" among the models. None of them are the tiresome, overly built-up muscle-men ("gym bunnies") so popular in the U. S. of A. and in the Dominions of Australia and Canada and who appear so frequently in the numerous gay-oriented magasines (e.g., Australia's "D.N.A.") that are published in those nations. Swinkels' models have naturally good physiques, whether slim and dapper, more hardily robust, or whatever, rather than the cultivated brawniness of weight-lifting "gay clones" (a book by Mark Simpson rather hilariously labelling such men, gay or straight, as "male impersonators"). These young men (who all appear to be, variously, in their 20s or 30s) range from boyish (several of them, each very individually so, including smoothly epicene Michel Verbeek), to lean-and lanky (moderately hirsute Erik Rollenberg and, especially delectably winsome, smooth Leo van Domburg, both of exquisitely chiselled but rangy, compact musculature) to more ruggedly friendly, extrovertedly sporty looks (e.g., Sep van Kampen and, especially, Flavio Basileo). In that regard, the book reminds me a bit of the wider-ranging, multi-faceted types of bodily appeal in modelling and gay photography of the 1960s and 1970s, when stereotyping of limited ideals of masculine beauty was less in evidence in gay popular culture than has been the case since those years. For me, the book would be worth its cost if only for the sake of the photos of Hartman and Domburg, but every gay man (or straight woman) is almost sure to have his own favourites somewhere within the book's 71 pages, at least assuming that he (or she) is not hopelessly and exclusively addicted to the body hair free, bulging gym-bunnies already alluded to.

Swinkels often has his nudes pose in the romantically evocative, emotion-maximising or narratively suggestive postures (though much less explicitly story-telling) so typical of such a great nude model, and extraordinary male beauty, of decades long past, as Tony Sansone. The photos, however, are erotically more evocative and "out there" (an expression which gay men know so well) than those of Sansone's peak years (the 1920s and 1930s). These young men tend to pose, usually buck-naked or, sometimes, scantily clad, their genitals (sometimes flaccid, other times at various degrees of incipient semi-tumescence), most often being distinctly, buck-nakedly forward (even when facing at an angle) to the camera in these pictures. Even when there is some clothing at hip-level downwards over the male's cherished "copulatory pendants", the shape and heft of a male's genitals usually are easily discernible as they cling closely and protrudingly to any fabric, wet or dry, that may happen to be between the model's body and the cloth concealing that part of him. The only model partially clad who lacks other photo(s) of him entirely nude, as well, in the book is Robert Jan Rutgers, who keeps on his knickers (boxer shorts) in each of his photos; in Rutgers' case, however, those underwear press so tightly upon his groin that his massive, "raging" (and truly impressive) penile erection, and tightly engorged testicles, are seen so clearly through the cloth (and his is the only erection of utterly full-tilt tumescence in the entire book) that he almost might as well be posing bare-naked at the loins, too! (Maybe this constitutes a little private joke on Swinkels' part!) The men's facial expressions and "body language" as the camera seizes these, project a wide range of emotions, from sexual desire, to longing, to slyly inviting flirtation or good-natured friendliness, to joyous or ecstatic exuberance, to reflective moodiness, to curiosity, and so much more.

Photography and printing quality of such a level of excellence in books of this kind have become more common in the mid- to late-1980s and since then. However, this work, of Swinkels the photographer and from Kosmowski the publisher, and others of like superiority, are always documents to treasure, however many or few other publications of such excellence there may be on the market at any time.

Tormented [Import]
Tormented [Import]
DVD ~ Alex Pettyfer
Price: CDN$ 27.73
13 used & new from CDN$ 16.42

4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Film, at Least the One Which I Myself Watched! Beauteous Youths, Good Acting, Lots of Gore!, July 7 2013
This review is from: Tormented [Import] (DVD)
Ms. Barbara M. Muirhead's own review, for Amazon-Canada, is a nice enough one, for whatever the film that she saw may have been, but surely she saw another movie of the same title ("Tormented", a moniker that several films have borne)! The one with Alex Pettyfer et alia, which this entry on Amazon lists and describes, is quite good, so I hope that the film of this title which Ms. Muirhead saw also was at least as good as this one.

The lover-boys who are among the high school's male students in this film are very good-looking, indeed, and not just Alex Pettyford, who himself is in fine fettle in this gory thriller. The first of the two sex scenes is really "hot", for the young guy, Dimitri Leonidas playing Alexis, is sensuously and sweetly cute, youthfully svelt, and romantic, and the girl whom he beds, Tuppence Middleton as Justine, is demurely pretty. Alex Pettyfer's shorter erotic scene, in the role of Bradley, a fatal one for him as well as for his girlfriend, Natasha (played by April Pearson), in which they have sex on a car seat, is shorter and the camera reveals less of Pettyfer's famously fine, sinewy lad-flesh.

The zombie or apparition, of Darren (acted by Calvin Dean) who is the suicided student, back from the dead, whom the other kids had bullied in life, really is a nemish-type, grossly overweight and ungainly, looking rather like a young James Levine; the famous conductor, who, however, in contrast to poor Darren, seems to have been popular in his own real life when so young, because of his great musical talents, widely admired early in life. Darren, for his part, in this gory saga had been one of the film's two ultimate targets of bullying by the movie's viciously tormenting schoolmates.

One of the few things about the film that disconcerts inconveniently is how hard it is to make sense of so much of the action, which is complex, with a bewilderingly large cast of characters, of whose names it can be difficult to keep track. The plot summary on "Wikipedia" helps considerably. Although the entire film at present (mid-2013) can be viewed on YouTube, there are no subtitles there, which, present on at least some of the DVD editions, also can help viewers quite considerably, especially those who are unaccustomed to the sound of British English or who are hard of hearing.

Happy (and fright-filled) viewing!

Bible: Knox, R.A.(Tr.)
Bible: Knox, R.A.(Tr.)
by Ronald Arbuthnott Knox
Edition: Hardcover

4.0 out of 5 stars Lovely Rendering of the Bible into English from the Latin Clementine Vulgate, Sept. 22 2012
This review is from: Bible: Knox, R.A.(Tr.) (Hardcover)
Msgr. Ronald Knox` rendition of the Clementine Latin Vulgate into English is a Bible for the ages. I have had the Knox Version of the Bible for many, many years, indeed, for most of my life, for fifty of almost seventy years of life so far. I read it cover-to-cover, too. Its greatest strength is its literary beauty, not surprising for those who know Ronald Knox` literary and religious works. Mgr. Knox was a celebrated Latinist, indeed, a prize-winning one, of a calibre little known nowadays. Knox` style in his own original poetry and prose writings in Latin is at least as elegant as his beautiful and expressive prose in English. Knox` rendering of the Holy Bible is a paraphrase, though, and a very beautiful one at that, which, alas, despite that kind of excellence, thus limits its use for analytical and exegetical study purposes. In fact, for all of the beauty of Knox` style, it is troubling how approxmately Knox renders so many passages.

It having been the the Clementine Latin Vulgate that Knox paraphrased, with secondary reference to Hebrew and Greek sources, rhis should have been a greater strength than the result turned out to be. This is because the Clementine Vulgate`s Latin text is superior to the so-called, all too corrupt "Critical Text" choices of readings in Greek for the N.T. that the majority of translators of most modern versions have opted to render (either, variously, by translating or by paraphrasing the Holy Scriptures). if Knox had translated the Clementine Vulgate more strictly his work would have had everlasting glory. As it is, the venerable Confraternity Version (as completed at last in 1969), especially in its New Testament (first published separately in 1941), is the best modern version that translates more faithfully the Clementine Latin Vulgate N.T. (with, as Knox did, consultion of decent Greek texts), and it has excellent English style, too.

For all of Mgr. Knox` own contempt for the literary style of the Douay-Rheims-Challoner Version, Bp. Richard Challoner`s version still appeals for its beauty, likewise for its faithfulness in translation. Knox was a fussy aesthete, which could make him lose sight of how successfully and ruggedly, as well as beautifully in its simplicity, Challoner`s translation so well has served Catholic readers across the centuries.

Anyway, as a monument of the work of a great Catholic scholar, apologist, and churchman, the Knox Version deserves respect, but it really needs to be used in conjunction with a full-equivalency translation of a good Greek text or of one that is from the Clementine (not the newer) Vulgate.

No Title Available

4.0 out of 5 stars One of the Great Bibles in English for Literary Style, but Too Paraphrastic for Study Use, Sept. 18 2012
Msgr. Ronald Knox` rendition of the Clementine Latin Vulgate into English is a Bible for the ages. I have had the Knox Version of the Bible for many, many years, indeed, for most of my life, for fifty of almost seventy years of life so far. I read it cover-to-cover, too. Its greatest strength is its literary beauty, not surprising for those who know Ronald Knox` literary and religious works. Knox` style in his own original poetry and prose writings in Latin is at least as elegant as his beautiful and expressive prose in English. His rendering of the Holy Bible is a paraphrase, though, and a very beautiful one, which, alas, thus limits its use for analytical and exegetical study purposes. In fact, for all of the beauty of Knox` style, it is troubling how approxmately Knox renders so many passages.

It having been the the Clementine Latin Vulgate that Knox paraphrased, with secondary reference to Hebrew and Greek sources, rhis should have been a greater strength than the result turned out to be. This is because the Clementine Vulgate`s Latin text is superior to the so-called, all too corrupt "Critical Text" choices of readings in Greek for the N.T. that the majority of translators of most modern versions have opted to render (either, variously, by translating or by paraphrasing the Holy Scriptures). if Knox had translated the Clementine Vulgate more strictly his work would have had everlasting glory. As it is, the venerable Confraternity Version (as completed at last in 1969), especially in its New Testament (first published separately in 1941), is the best modern version that translates more faithfully the Clementine Latin Vulgate N.T. (with, as Knox did, consultion of decent Greek texts), and it has excellent English style, too.

For all of Mgr. Knox` own contempt for the literary style of the Douay-Rheims-Challoner Version, Bp. Richard Challoner`s version still appeals for its beauty, likewise for its faithfulness in translation. Knox was a fussy aesthete, which could make him lose sight of how successfully and ruggedly, as well as beautifully in its simplicity, Challoner`s translation so well has served Catholic readers across the centuries.

Anyway, as a monument of the work of a great Catholic scholar, apologist, and churchman, the Knox Version deserves respect, but it really needs to be used in conjunction with a full-equivalency translation of a good Greek text or of one that is from the Clementine (not newer) Vulgate.

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