The people's voice of reason

Hold onto Your Hats vs Hold in Your Puke

As I write this, today is the 8th anniversary of my father’s passing. Sad day for my super small family. My feeling matches the overcast skies here in Montgomery. Miss you, dad.

What I wanted to write about today was the Durham Report. There is so much there and I cannot believe our prisons are not filled up with lawless politicians and alleged protectors of our democratic republic. What I have seen thus far is frightening. But before I write about the report, I want to read the whole 300+ pages for myself. So, yes. There will be more to come in a later Robservation.


Anyone who knows me knows that I love going to the movies or watching movies on television. New, old, color, black and white, foreign, I love most. I hate “period pieces,” you know guys in powdered wigs and such. I am also not a real fan of most musicals. Some are okay but most are just not my style no matter what it may be.

Case in point, I hated Les Miserables. It was an excellent movie but just not my style. Sitting all the way in the back row, I remembered texting my brother (nobody could see the light on my phone) and telling him if I hear one more stupid song I was going to gouge my eyes out. Just not my style, just like I know many people out there hate the war movies I love to watch.

In the hundreds of movies I have seen in my life, I have only walked out of two. One was Little Shop of Horrors when I was stationed in Germany and the other was Noah while I was on a layover in Albuquerque. If I had been in a theater last night, it would have made movie number three. But since I was home alone with my dogs, I had to finish watching it because I knew I was going to write this Robservation and I needed to talk from a position of experience.

I am not going to make any bones about it. I love Top Gun: Maverick. Almost every time it is on television, my wife and I will watch it. That is after watching it three times in the theater. In total, I have likely watched it all the way through or in part close to 15 times now. It never gets old. From start to finish it is a “hold onto your hats” movie. The casting, the aerial scenes, the story line and their ability to tie up so many loose ends from the first Top Gun movie is admirable. If you ask me whether a mission would have been planned and flown that way, I would say not a chance. But so what. It is an excellent visual experience and you get to really feel for the characters.

My favorite scene? Well, I have two. One is when Maverick steals the F-18 an flies the practice bomb run in 2 minutes and 15 seconds. Like the female F-18 pilot “Phoenix” says, “Nice.” The next is right before Maverick takes off on the mission toward the end of the movie and his friend “Hondo” is standing outside the cockpit.

Hondo: “Hey, Mav. I don’t like that look.”

Maveric: “It’s the only look I got.” A long pregnant pause. “Thank you. Hondo.

If I never see you again, thank you.”

Hondo: Gathering himself. “It’s been an honor, Captain.”

Powerful stuff there. I think about how many hundreds of times that same conversation has happened throughout the history of air warfare. Even while flying my NATO AWACS during the Gulf War, we had similar conversations with our crew chiefs. Looking back, only once did I have to retrograde because of a potential enemy threat which turned out to be nothing. But knowing Soviet bloc doctrine, my airplane was always among the primary targets to shoot down. At the time we did not know. We were always grateful when we knew we had American F-15s flying Combat Air Patrol (CAP) to protect us.

But looking at this movie and how great it is, I wondered why in the heck it did not do better in the Academy Awards. There was a lot of discussion about it being too “American” or too military. Not “woke” enough for some. So, I decided to watch the movie that won the Academy Award this year, Everything, Everywhere, All at Once.

This is where “Hold in Your Puke” comes into play.

I can say without a sliver of a doubt that this was one of the three worst movies I have

ever seen. The term worthless comes to mind. Having the obligatory homosexual/lesbian relationship is not even an issue. I do not care about that. I have mentioned many times in previous Robservations that I have had many friends and relatives who were/are gay, so let’s not go there. But let me mention just a couple of things.

1. The Butt Plug: I cannot even believe I am mentioning this in a column of mine. There is a scene where Jamie Lee Curtiss, an IRS tax auditor is talking to the lead family. She has three trophies on her desk for auditor of the month. I looked at the trophy and immediately said, “What the . . .” Well later in the movie two men have a fight scene with lead actress Michelle Yeoh with these things, well, uh, hanging from..... You get it.

Really? Really? In no way am I any kind of prude but that is disgusting. To be honest, one guy’s “insertion” is actually a lighted cylinder with colored glitter in it, I think. Just as disgustingly stupid. If you dare:

2. That Thing: In another fight scene, a young lady beats a guy half to death with, uhhhh, how do I say it? I know the word but let’s just say beats him up with two gigantic fake male sexual organs, wielding them like Nunchakus. NO! I am not making this up.

From a nonsensical plot to an alternate universe where people have hot dogs for fingers (yes, I wish I was still making this up), this movie is horrible. Yet it won 7 Academy Awards; best movie, best actress, best supporting actress, best director, best supporting actor, best film editing and best original screenplay.

People were cheering that Michelle Yeoh was the first Asian actress to win the best actress award. I have seen her in many other movies where her performance was much worthier than this. Then I watched an interview with her gushing over that “butt plug fight scene.” Oy!!

There was a time when I would watch the Academy Awards. I used to love watching the winners and checking off my list of who I though would win. Most years I would watch all the movies nominated for best picture. Those days ended well over a decade ago.

Today, I do not even turn the Academy Awards on. I could not care less about rich people giving other rich people trophies. But when I saw Maverick last year, one of the best movies I have seen in a long time, I was really interested in seeing how the Academy would respond to this movie. Then when this crazy movie won, I finally felt compelled to watch it. Like Sun Tzu’s Art of War, you must know your enemy. For me to talk about the movie, I had to see it.

Now unfortunately, those perverse images cannot be unseen and I will never get back those two hours of wasted time.

All I can say to the Academy is, “Shame on you.” I just wonder what kind of influences were pedaled to secure this victory for such a horrible movie. As for these two movies, there is no way I can be convinced that Maverick was not the better movie.

Perhaps the $718 million vs. $69 million box office gross is something to look at.

While Maverick was number one, Everything was only number 27. That says something. The next time Maverick comes on, I will undoubtedly watch it.

That wretched Everything, Everywhere, All at Once will never again spread its ridiculous filth on my television.


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