The Nine for April 2022

  1. TCM–April’s “Star of the Month” on TCM was Errol Flynn, so this month’s newsletter is mostly going to be fangirling pretty hard! If you don’t know this about me, Errol Flynn has been one of my favorite actors since I saw The Adventures of Robin Hood when I was 9. I’ve mostly been watching some of the lesser known films from his filmography, but if you are unfamiliar allow me to recommend a top five… 
  • The Adventures of Robin Hood is the best Errol Flynn movie and the best Robin Hood movie. Periodt.
  • Captain Blood is an early Flynn role, and one of the best pirate movies. Excellent sword fight with his frequent foil, Basil Rathbone.
  • Dodge CityIt can be hard to find westerns from this period that aren’t overtly racist, and this one isn’t. Guys with big hats, broad shoulders and skinny hips fighting over…cows. Hells yeah.
  • Never Say Goodbye is a relatively new discovery for me, and demonstrates that young Errol Flynn should have made more romantic, screwball comedies. He’s charming and willing to take a joke at his expense and has good comic timing. 
  • Gentleman Jim was new to me, and isn’t my favorite, but I’m putting it here because it is reputedly Flynn’s favorite of his films, which makes it worth seeing. 

2. Don’t Bet on BlondesThis movie is longer than a short, but shorter than a feature. It doesn’t star Errol Flynn, but he should be arrested for stealing the two scenes he’s in. 

3. Dive BomberThe tagline of this movie should be “Make science sexy again!” Flynn is a research physician trying to prevent altitude sickness and blackout for pilots. I’m sure the actual science is hokey, but we have Errol Flynn in a white t-shirt, white dinner jacket, Navy dress white uniform, and white button down with the sleeves rolled up, so it’s worth checking out.

4. Against All FlagsGive us more Maureen O’Hara as a pirate enforcing her boundaries and teaching about consent at the point of a tiny pistol! This is definitely her movie, but Flynn is good in it. 

5. Mara Maru–If you want to know what Flynn should have been doing in that later part of his career (which I know you do), this movie is the answer. Rather than trying to resurrect the swashbucklers that defined his early career and required an energy he no longer possessed, he should have made film noirs. If there’s anyone who looks jaded, cynical and done with life as befitting a noir protagonist, it’s Errol Flynn in the 50’s.

6. Podcast– I’m a low-key sustainable energy nerd–I love my solar panels! So I was interested in a podcast called So Watt from an Australian energy company about sustainable energy. It’s hosted by an Australian comedian, so you have to take the information with a dose of dad jokes, but there is some good information especially if you are new to the topic.

7. Podcast– I listened to season three of Gangster Capitalism, about Liberty University, and, wow, I was in a state of seething rage through most of it. I’ve known for a while that LU is a bastion of Christian Nationalism and misogynistic legalism, but I didn’t know how bad it was, or how much money and greed were at the heart of it.

8. BookSelf-Reg is a thorough exploration of helping children develop the skills to self-regulate, which is the foundation for healthy adulthood. It’s not the first parenting book I would give someone as it is long and academic, though not unreadable.

9. Book–Unvarnished Jesus was my Lenten devotional for this year and it was absolutely what I needed to read. Brian Zahnd is one of my favorite Christian writers and thinkers, and I recommend this and his other works wholeheartedly.

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Stay charming, my friends

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