Sunday, November 2, 2014

Carmen and Fort McCoy

In a weak moment, I promised Bill I would go to see "Carmen" with him yesterday.  We took our friend, Pat Jollata, along because she loves to go see opera with Bill.  It has been about three years since I last went to The Met: Live in HD with Bill.  I swore never to go again.  I really dislike opera.  But I know that "Carmen" is supposed to be one of those wonderful operas that everyone loves.  So I did say yes.  It was okay.   I certainly recognized some of the music from popular culture.  But it was opera.  To me--classical music is spoiled by the addition of operatic voices.  But as always--it is definitely fascinating to see the behind the scenes action when they are changing the sets around and hearing the interviews with the singers between sets and acts.

I had heard about the movie "Fort McCoy" a few months ago when it was getting ready to premier in theaters.  It was filmed on Fort McCoy which is near my hometown as well as in LaCrosse and Coon Valley.  Some of the filming was also done in California.  I have been interested in seeing it because of it being about a historical period in my hometown--prisoners of war being held at Camp McCoy.  My only exposure up to this point was seeing the trailer.  And I was pretty outraged that they called it "Fort McCoy" because that wasn't what it was called during WWII.  It was called Camp McCoy at that time.  I just recently heard that I could probably find it on Comcast Pay per View and so I watched it last night.

I have to admit--I was disappointed.  It was really cool seeing the buildings on Fort McCoy and the Wisconsin farmland and landscapes.  But the screenplay wasn't very well done.  The actress that played the wife was also the director and screenplay writer.  She played the role of her great grandmother in the movie.  The screenplay was written in a way that was fairly superficial.  I'm sure she wrote is as she heard the stories growing up.  She didn't know the characters so she didn't know how to develop them and what happened to them very well. 

I found a review after I watched it that pretty much summed up what Bill and I had thought about the movie.  Some of the reviews were a little more kind to the movie than this one.  But I think this was pretty spot on.  "Fort McCoy" review

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