Bird: the Charlie Parker story

The great thing about working from home is that it’s OK to fuck around in the time you save by not travelling. So today this was watching the second half of Madame X which we taped the other night and selections from Clint Eastwood’s Bird. One of my favourite bits of Bird is when Parker takes the red-headed jewish trumpeter Red Rodney on a tour of the deep South as part of his band under the billing of “Albino Red” (this being the days of segregation in the South) and makes him sing the blues in various juke joints. Forest Whitaker is exceptionally good as Parker.

Madame X, on the other hand, is a fifties melodrama where Lana Turner is almightily punished (the loss of husband, son, exile, alcoholism, whoring, madness and ultimately death) for playing around with Ricardo Montalban while her husband is away. I hope Montalban was a pretty good shag. Of course, Montalban’s other great film is Star Trek: Wrath of Khan.

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