<%@LANGUAGE="JAVASCRIPT" CODEPAGE="65001"%> Picks 10/1/14


Film: ‘The Alamo’

This 2004 film of the same name and topic as the 1960 big screen epic should not be thought of as a remake of the first because they are very different beasts indeed. And while the new one perhaps lacks the grand dramatic strokes of the first and is less studded with marquee name stars, I found it quite preferable. For starters both in the setting depicted as well as the historical record it is far more accurate, and it fills in the context and follows what happened there through to its logical triumph of the rebellious Texans later defeating Santa Ana and his Mexican Army. Hence it’s still worth seeing even if it doesn’t crackle, and in the end it would have been far preferable if it has been made as a cable mini-series and not a film.

Book: ‘Labyrinth’ by Taylor Branch and Eugene M. Propper

The tipoff that this is a book worth reading no matter what it is about is the name Taylor Branch, whose three book series on the life of Martin Luther King, Jr. and the civil rights movement are among the greatest works of biography and history of our times. His ability to make long, involved and complex matters come to life in a compelling fashion is essential to this book’s story of the investigation into the 1976 bombing murder of Chilean diplomat and politician Orlando Letelier in the heart of our nation’s capital. His co-author Propper, the federal prosecutor on the case, traveled long through a maze and house of mirrors of international intrigue, intelligence and terrorism, and in as fascinating as well as dismaying its accounts of how the FBI, CIA and the governments of our South American allies actually operate is well worth the near 600 paperback pages, the surprise ending when the case gets solved is a doozy that tops the sundae.

TV show: ‘Billy Connolly’s Route 66’

This four-part series that follows the Scottish comedian westward along the legendary highway that is today more a byway is an utter delight. Connolly, whose humor tends towards the cutting, shows both his deep heart and love for America and its people as he recounts what was and discovers important and too often overlooked aspects of our nation and its citizens that are touching, revelatory and fun.

From The Progressive Populist, October 1, 2014


Blog | Current Issue | Back Issues | Essays | Links

About the Progressive Populist | How to Subscribe | How to Contact Us

Copyright © 2014 The Progressive Populist
PO Box 819, Manchaca TX 78652