Not the 365 ~ movies, cats, stuff.

Another catch up post, as it’s been a couple of weeks or so since the last one. First let me tell you about the movies we’ve watched of late.

On Netflix ~Black Hawk Down (2001) Ridley Scott has to be my favourite director and it’s easy to see why in this movie. Based on the real life event of the US Army raid on Mogadishu in 1993, it stars Josh Hartnett, Ewan McGregor, Eric Bana, Sam Shepard, Tom Hardy and Tom Sizemore. Delta Force, the 75th Rangers and the 160th SAOR (Night Stalkers) get into terrible trouble when one of their helicopters is brought down in the middle of Mogadishu. It’s ‘on the edge of your seat’ stuff and a part of history I knew nothing about.

Fraggle rating~ bloody brilliant. )Also Josh Hartnett, he’s so cool 😍).

Next up and also on Netflix is the fantastic Ed Harris in Kodachrome (2017) directed by Mark Raso and also starring Jason Sudeikis and Elizabeth Olson showing her acting chops when breaking away from the Marvel franchise. It’s a road trip sort of movie and deals with the failed Father/son relationship. Ed Harris is the irrascible Father dying of cancer, and he asks his son Ben (Sudeikis) to drive him to Dwayne’s Photo lab in Kansas as it’s the last shop able to develop rolls of Kodachrome, and Dad has 4 old rolls he has to get developed before the shop stops doing it. Olson plays his put-upon nurse. It’s all a bit predictable, I’d guessed what was on the rolls of film 5 minutes into the movie, though you don’t find out why they’re so important until the end, but Ed Harris, I’d watch him act the telephone book and he is SO good in this. Nice cameo performances from Bruce Greenwood and Wendy Crewson as Dad’s brother and wife who brought Ben up.

Fraggle rating: Excellent for Ed Harris fans, good enough for anyone else who wants a nice looking American road trip movie with smiles and pathos, good acting and a well cool car.

Phil dug out his old DVD of Stigmata (1999) directed by Rupert Wainright and starring Gabriel Byrne, Patricia Arquette and Jonathon Price. It’s a supernatural horror film about an atheist hairdresser (Arquette) who gets given a Rosary once owned by a dead Italian priest who was afflicted with stigmata. Somehow the Rosary has the same effect on Arquette and we get to see her beaten and bloodied by something invisible, all stigmata marks. She also has flashbacks of Jesus getting the same wounds she receives. Bryne plays a Catholic priest & scientist who investigates miracles and the like, and is sent to see her. At first sceptical he comes to see that it’s all happening for real and has to find out how to stop it before Arquette dies. It’s all to do with a lost gospel written by Jesus himself, that the Catholic church don’t want people to know about, as Jesus writes there’s no need for church buildings and preachy priests etc as God is within you and everywhere. Some nifty special effects in this without CGI so kudos to them for that. Byrne and Arquette have a good chemistry but the plot really is a bit daft. (Says she who loves Marvel movies πŸ™„ ) I should imagine it naffed off a lot of Catholics but it did really well at the box office, not so much with critics.

Fraggle Rating: Not so good for Catholics. Not so good for horror afficionado’s as it’s probably a bit tame by today’s gory standards. Good for horror-lightweights like me though.

Last and possibly least, Wild Horses (2015) written by, directed by and starring Robert Duvall. I found this when looking for Josh Hartnett movies and he is in it too, as is James Franco. I think this must have been a vanity project for Duvall. It’s a Western Crime movie and also stars his wife Luciana Duvall as a Texan Ranger investigating the 15 year old disappearance of a young man who was found by Duvall in bed with his youngest son (Franco). Hartnett plays his older brother, and Devon Abner as the eldest brother. Duvall’s character is the main suspect for offing the missing young lad, as he hates gay people. The gay issue is actually well addressed, and Franco makes his gay character just a normal guy, no camping it up.

Fraggle Rating: Apart from those wishing to ogle Mr.Hartnett, I can see no reason to recommend this one for anyone really, the script is hokey and the acting wooden in places, perhaps because he gave some parts to actual real people not actors. You need subtitles to understand Mr.Duvall’s mutterings, and the plot has more holes in it than a packet of Polo’s. There are a few scenes with the brothers and Duvall, collectively and individually where it’s really good to watch them play off each other, but they can’t save this from being a dud.

OK onto Books I have read.

I’ve just finished reading for the second time Child of The Morning by Pauline Gedge. Never mind your Cleopatra/Anthony/Caesar romp, this is about Hatshepsut, one of the first female Pharaoh’s and lived 3,500 years ago. Her life is equally fascinating as that of Cleopatra (who’s been done to death) if not more so, and deserves a great movie, but so far no-one has picked this up. Gedge’s writing is just beautiful, lyrical yet straightforward, and reading the book is like stepping back in time. The characters come to life in your head as you read it, and you can feel the breeze from the Nile. It’s impeccably researched and I highly recommended this for anyone who loves tales of ancient Egypt.

A short story from blogger Mae Clare called In Search of MacDoogal about a chap who sells his girlfrends favourite painting, and then has to retrieve it. This took me an hour to read, and I smiled or laughed all the way through it as he and his friend encounter much upheaval along the way. A fun read on a rainy afternoon.

Work and life go on much as normal. We’ve managed to visit Shelley and the kids last weekend and sat in the garden in a cold wind with a flask of coffee. It was nice to see them though, it had been quite a while.

Livvy egging it.

We still have Sophies cats, and still don’t know when Sophie will get back. They’ve been indoor cats up to now, but Winnie has been trying to escape, and has managed a couple of times. We’ve got her vaccinated now and so are allowing them out. We thought Vinnie wouldn’t be so bothered as he never seemed to be interested,but boy were we wrong! He loves it! He has a little patrol he does around the back garden, then down the side of the house to the front where he sniffs every plant and bush, then he comes in for a snack or a kip and then does it all again, all day long. Winnie is beside herself, climbing fences, on top of my shed, on top of next doors fence and shed, but she runs in every 30 minutes to make sure we are still here, and then goes out again. Everyone happy, and we can now have our doors and windows open when the weather gets warmer!


Most of you who visit here also know my 365 is going on over at the Universe Blog and have seen the Blossom tree doing it’s thing and Lucy the visiting Hedgehog, so I’ll skip those but it has had me off on walks for photographs and Phil and I trotted over to the Nature reserve, and I went one day to the secret lake, so here are a few from our wanderings.

The Blackthorne blossom was in full bloom when I went over to the secret lake, lovely to walk through.

A procession of Blackthorn

Some of the route is lined with gorse bushes.


Mr.Lonely at the secret lake, hope he finds a mate.


Phil has had to take time off work as he is having great problems with his eyes, possibly a flare up of his glaucoma, so we went out for a walk to the nature reserve to get him out for some excercise.

The male ducks were all chasing the lady ducks at the pond, and this lady was not in the mood. Well maybe she was but playing hard to get! 😊

the chase

Two swans live on the reserve and have swanlets every year, I think Mr. Lonely must be last years offspring. Lady Swan was hidden in her nest, could only just see her, but Lord Swan was patrolling the perimeter and keeping an eye on her.

On Patrol

When we got home my little 500 looked so cute next to the Happy Eater tree.

Minty and tree

and lastly, this little long tail tit is a daily visitor the the H.E.Tree


So that’s my catch up for now. I’ll be back at some point .

Stay frosty people! 😊

31 thoughts on “Not the 365 ~ movies, cats, stuff.

  1. Wow, you sure live in some lovely countryside – the lakes, the paths, the bushes. Beautiful scenery. Can just imagine, driving down the long winding roads in good old Minty, wind in the hair… Living your best life, Fraggle.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s nice to have the nature reserve nearby but I actually live on an estate on the outskirts of Gateshead, more urban than country. I think there were plans to build more houses on it but so far it’s been left alone. Cheers Otsy.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That is very true. I just starts to get ridiculous when you’ve got World Cups in Qatar, talks of a European Super League and corrupt governments hiding behind clubs to cover up their human rights abuses. It doesn’t make it easy for people to watch when all it’s about is the money.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Black Hawk Down is so full-on. I have seen it a few times now, and always enjoy it. I really like Stigmata, and have a special edition DVD with a choice of alternative endings. I will look out for the Ed Harris film, as I can also watch him doing anything.
    I have been to The temple of Hatshepsut, near Luxor. It is very impressive. I pased out with heatstroke just outside it in fact!
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. It wasn’t that hot, just that the sun is directly overhead, and I was careless with not wearing a cap, or drinking enough water. I think it was about 75F that day. (I went in December) It’s cool at night in Egypt though, especially close to The Nile. I found it a very safe place, and enjoyed the trip. But that was in 1989.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. It wasn’t just catholics who weren’t big fans of Stigmata. Anyone who took their Christianity seriously was going to be opposed to the message in the film. But considering that Hollywood keeps banging that drum, no one is surprised any more :-/

    what does “egging it” mean? I can’t figure out the context from the picture. I’m guessing eating? but not sure…

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh my gosh, “Black Hawk Down” is an absolute stunner. I could call it “intense” but it doesn’t do it justice. Love it so much. And the performances throughout are phenomenal including the late, great Sam Shepard. I don’t remember a ton about “Kodachrome” but Harris’ prickly performance has stuck with me. You’re right, hes so good.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Whew! That is quite a ride you have taken us on! Sounds like life is returning to normal in some ways on your side of the pond; here, the library opens 4 hours a day, 3 days a week, as a toe-in-the-water. That is good news. I hope Phil’s eyes improve and Mr. Lonely finds his love . . . πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

  6. it was pretty advanced of the Egyptians to have female pharaohs. Like everyone else of my age, the only pharaoh I know anything about is Tuthenkhamen, simply because of all the fuss about the exhibition at the BM 50 years ago. Hatshepsut sounds interesting.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I tend to think they both were very canny lasses. Cleo spoke 7 languages and ran the country well, she was good at manipulation too. I like to believe they were both formidable in the brain department.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. So jealous of your tits!….(haha Im such a child) Great round up. I really appreciate how regularly you post (and April too) should inspire me to do the same….it will…I think its a great way just to review where the head is at…and a lovely glimpse for us into your life. Love your photos as always and hearing about the cats…anyway keep it up!

    Liked by 1 person

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