Sunday, January 31, 2021

Salem's Lot (1979)

Salem's Lot is a 2-part miniseries adaptation of the Stephen King novel. It features vampires and an old house with an evil reputation. David Soul stars. Also you get James Mason and Elisha Cook, Jr.

Part 1:



part 2:



Saturday, January 30, 2021

Bao (2018)

Bao is a 2018 animated short film. (on Vimeo)

Friday, January 29, 2021

The Uninvited (2009)

The Uninvited is the 2009 American remake of the 2003 South Korean horror film A Tale of Two Sisters. I watched it at Tubi, but it's not there now. It's on CBS All Access, which is a premium service we subscribe to for Star Trek: Discovery.

trailer:


Grave Reviews calls it, "an engaging psychological thriller that would engage viewers." Roger Ebert says, "When a movie like this is done well, it's uncommon. "The Uninvited" is done well."

Thursday, January 28, 2021

Duet (2014)

Duet is a 2014 animated short film from former Disney animator Glen Keane.

Wednesday, January 27, 2021

The Nanny (1965)

The Nanny is a 1965 suspense film starring Bette Davis. I am not a Bette Davis fan but watched this because it appears on so many lists of recommended movies. You can watch it online at this link.

trailer:


The BBC calls it "easily one of the best British psycho-thrillers committed to celluloid". TCM has an overview. Rotten Tomatoes has a consensus critics score of 85%.

Unity

"Biden made his whole thing about bipartisanship and unity and Republicans are going to join him in precisely none of it then blame him for being unable to fulfill his promise and say that in fact he actually divided things worse. That about cover the next four years?" -Luke O'Neil. O'Neil has a Twitter account here.
And there it is. McConnell won't even allow the normal transfer of committee chairmanships to the majority party, but Trump cultists are complaining that Biden carrying forward in presenting plans towards accomplishing what we all knew his agenda was is a sign that he's not trying to unify us? Biden's overt willingness to compromise and work with Republicans isn't good enough because he won't just do what the right-wing Republicans wanted before they lost the presidency and both houses?
"Unity and healing must begin with understanding and truth." -President Joe Biden (link)
Reaching out requires someone reach back to accomplish anything. "Unity" has never meant everybody is going to agree on everything. "Unity" means we're agreeing to work together towards the common cause of making things better. Some Republicans seem to think it means, "We lost, but you said "unity" so you should do what we want anyway". To them I'd like to say, "F***k your feelings" and "You lost, get over it, move on" and "Elections have consequences" -you know, like they told me...

but I won't.

No, in the spirit of Biden's longing for unity I'll say, "Can we at least talk about our differences and try to work towards an understanding?" Give up the baseless conspiracy theories and the "We were robbed" plaint and the threats of secession and work with us, for Heaven's sake.

Or not. But don't then complain that Biden divided us.



P.S. This post is in no way intended as a response to anything said by any of my blogging buddies. If it had been I'd've just come right out and said so and quoted y'all and linked to your posts, like I've done in the past. 

No, this post is in response to statements I'm seeing from politicians. I'll include a few examples below, just so you can see what I'm seeing if you've quit tracking news reports.

Rand Paul said this of Biden's inauguration speech
"If you read his speech and listen to it carefully, much of it is thinly-veiled innuendo calling us white supremacists, calling us racists, calling us every name in the book."
Josh Hawley (insurrectionist cheerleader) said,
"Democrats in DC say they want unity. They don’t want unity. They want total control. Control of what we say, what we think, and who we support."
Marco Rubio tweeted:
"A radical leftist agenda in a divided country will not help unify our country..."
In the midst of these lies and insults, the ongoing inflammatory rhetoric, Republican refusal to reach back and take Biden's hand, and continuing reluctance of elected Republicans to admit the truth that Biden won a free and fair election, you can't say Biden's the one at fault for continuing division. Well, you can, but that'd be another lie.

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Leaning Woman with Dog and Still Life

Leaning Woman with Dog and Still Life (1917)


by Pierre Bonnard, who died on January 23, 1947, at 79 years of age. You can see more of his work at WikiArt at this link.

Please join me in sharing a drink-related post and joining me at the T Stands for Tuesday blogger gathering.

Monday, January 25, 2021

The Safety Net



The Safety Net by Andrea Camilleri is the 25th book in the Inspector Montalbano mystery series. I enjoy the characters, the plots, the food desctiptions... I always look forward to reading the next one.

from the back of the book:
Vigata is bustling as the new filming location for a Swedish television series set in 1950. In the production frenzy, the director asks the locals to track down movies and vintage photos to faithfully re-create the town's atmosphere at that time. While rummaging in the attic of his house, Ernesto Sabatello finds a collection of films shot by his father from 1958 to 1963, always on the same day, March 27, and always the same shot: the outside wall of a country house.

Montalbano hears the story and, intrigued, begins to investigate its meaning. Meanwhile, a middle school is threatened by a group of armed men, and a closer look at the situation finds Montalbano considering the students as suspects, forcing him to delve into the online world of social media for answers.
Publishers Weekly has a positive review. Kirkus Reviews concludes, "Both darker and more absurd than previous romps, the latest Montalbano is a bracing cautionary tale."

Sunday, January 24, 2021

Nosferatu the Vampyre

Nosferatu the Vampyre is a 1979 West German remake of the 1922 Nosferatu film. Directed by Werner Herzog and starring Klaus Kinski, how can you resist?

I watched it on TubiTV. Here's a trailer:


The British Film Institute closes an appreciative article with this:
Eerily beautiful and remarkable in many respects (not least for the acting – notably the expressionist performances of Kinski and Isabelle Adjani, but also that of Bruno Ganz), Nosferatu the Vampyre is at once a tribute to Murnau’s original and the golden age of German filmmaking and a musing on the vampire myth and the gothic tradition. In its various divergences from its hallowed predecessor, it is also – perhaps inevitably, I’d say, given that this is a Herzog film – a wry, haunting meditation on the human condition. Death, as Dracula reminds us, is not the worst thing that can befall us.
The Guardian gives it a full 5 stars and says, "Klaus Kinski is genuinely scary as the bloodthirsty Count in Werner Herzog's homage to the 1922 FW Murnau movie". Roger Ebert considered it a Great Movie. Rotten Tomatoes has a critics consensus score of 95%.

Saturday, January 23, 2021

Tombstone (1993)

Tombstone is a 1993 Western film starring Kurt Russell and Val Kilmer, with Sam Elliott, Bill Paxton, Powers Boothe, Michael Biehn, Charlton Heston, Billy Bob Thornton, and Dana Delany in supporting roles, as well as narration by Robert Mitchum. It's a traditional western, well told and well acted. And that cast! I watched it on Amazon Prime, free with ads. Or Daily Motion has it.

trailer:


Friday, January 22, 2021

Mr Hublot

Mr Hublot is a 2014 award-winning animated short film.

Thursday, January 21, 2021

Just Walkin' in the Rain

Just Walkin' in the Rain (Sun Records in Memphis):


a 1952 popular song written when The Prisonaires were, well, in prison in Nashville, TN. Lead singer Johnny Bragg had his sentence commuted in 1956, but in 1960 he was arrested for "parole violation" for being found in the back of an automobile with a white women. It was his wife. He was returned to jail for six and a half years.

And you wonder why they protest. #BlackLivesMatter

Wednesday, January 20, 2021

A Single Life

A Single Life is a 2014 animated short film. And I do mean short.

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Think About Your Troubles

Think About Your Troubles:



by Harry Nilsson. He was born with heart problems and died on 1/19/1994 of heart failure at the age of 52.

lyrics excerpt:
Sit beside the breakfast table
Think about your troubles
Pour yourself a cup of tea
Then think about the bubbles
You can take your teardrops
And drop them in a teacup
Take them down to the riverside
And throw them over the side
******* 

Please join me at the T Stand for Tuesday blogger gathering. Post a drink and share a link.

Monday, January 18, 2021

There's a Noose Waiting for You, Trinity!

There's a Noose Waiting for You, Trinity! (aka The Return of Clint the Stranger) is a 1972 spaghetti western starring Klaus Kinski (one of our favorites) and George Martin. The music is by the ever-masterful Ennio Morricone. You can watch it on Amazon Prime. Or via Youtube:


 
*******

Spaghetti-Western.net says,
The use of Trinity in the title may have created some false expectations: this is most certainly not a comedy. In spite of the traditional storyline it's a rather dark movie. Martin is still the archetypical western hero of the peaceful man who's forced to take up his gun again, but he's also a psychologically tormented, unstable person who is haunted by his violent past in a series of red-tinted flashbacks. The action scenes are rather sudden; they're well-handled...

Sunday, January 17, 2021

Paranormal Activity

Paranormal Activity is a 2007 supernatural found-footage horror movie. I had never seen this one before and watched it on Netflix.

trailer:


The Guardian begins with this: "Both hair-raising and chilling, this suburban drama skips genre cliches, to come up with a claustrophobic classic". Empire Online closes by saying, "An Amityville for the YouTube age: potent, primal and genuinely frightening."

Roger Ebert opens a positive review with this: ""Paranormal Activity" is an ingenious little horror film, so well made it's truly scary...". Rotten Tomatoes has a critics consensus score of 83%.

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Into the Forest

Into the Forest is a 2015 post-apocalyptic film. The apocalypse is undefined but takes place in the near future. I watched it on Netflix.

trailer:



The Hollywood Reporter says, "Beautiful and sensitive to character but gripping when it needs to be, the pic is too grounded to be lumped into the apocalyptic genre bin". Roger Ebert's site closes by saying, "find a way to see "Into the Forest," for it is the kind of film that will not only stick with you, it will even make you think."

Friday, January 15, 2021

The Kumars at No. 42


The Kumars at No. 42 isn't a series I've watched, but the name makes me want to. The image at the top of the post is from Amazon.com, where they offer this show for $8.90.

I look for 42s as I go through my daily life.

Thursday, January 14, 2021

God of War

God of War is a 2017 film based on general Qi Jiguang's suppression of the Japanese wokou pirates during the Ming dynasty. I enjoyed this one. The Younger Son had the DVD, so that's how I saw it. I don't see it free online.

trailer:

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Second Variety

photo of Philip K. Dick from Wikipedia


Second Variety is a 1953 science fiction short story by Philip K. Dick. You can read it online here. There's a link to an audio edition at the bottom of this post. The story begins,
The claws were bad enough in the first place -nasty, crawling little death-robots. But when they began to imitate their creators, it was time for the human race to make peace -if it could!

The Russian soldier made his way nervously up the ragged side of the hill, holding his gun ready. He glanced around him, licking his dry lips, his face set. From time to time he reached up a gloved hand and wiped perspiration from his neck, pushing down his coat collar.

Eric turned to Corporal Leone. “Want him? Or can I have him?” He adjusted the view sight so the Russian’s features squarely filled the glass, the lines cutting across his hard, somber features.

Leone considered. The Russian was close, moving rapidly, almost running. “Don’t fire. Wait.” Leone tensed. “I don’t think we’re needed.”

The Russian increased his pace, kicking ash and piles of debris out of his way. He reached the top of the hill and stopped, panting, staring around him. The sky was overcast, drifting clouds of gray particles. Bare trunks of trees jutted up occasionally; the ground was level and bare, rubble-strewn, with the ruins of buildings standing out here and there like yellowing skulls.

The Russian was uneasy. He knew something was wrong. He started down the hill. Now he was only a few paces from the bunker. Eric was getting fidgety. He played with his pistol, glancing at Leone.

“Don’t worry,” Leone said. “He won’t get here. They’ll take care of him.”

“Are you sure? He’s got damn far.”

“They hang around close to the bunker. He’s getting into the bad part. Get set!”

The Russian began to hurry, sliding down the hill, his boots sinking into the heaps of gray ash, trying to keep his gun up. He stopped for a moment, lifting his fieldglasses to his face.

“He’s looking right at us,” Eric said.

The Russian came on. They could see his eyes, like two blue stones. His mouth was open a little. He needed a shave; his chin was stubbled. On one bony cheek was a square of tape, showing blue at the edge. A fungoid spot. His coat was muddy and torn. One glove was missing. As he ran his belt counter bounced up and down against him.

Leone touched Eric’s arm. “Here one comes.”

Across the ground something small and metallic came, flashing in the dull sunlight of mid-day. A metal sphere. It raced up the hill after the Russian, its treads flying. It was small, one of the baby ones. Its claws were out, two razor projections spinning in a blur of white steel. The Russian heard it. He turned instantly, firing. The sphere dissolved into particles. But already a second had emerged and was following the first. The Russian fired again.

A third sphere leaped up the Russian’s leg, clicking and whirring. It jumped to the shoulder. The spinning blades disappeared into the Russian’s throat.

Eric relaxed. “Well, that’s that. God, those damn things give me the creeps. Sometimes I think we were better off before.”

“If we hadn’t invented them, they would have.” Leone lit a cigarette shakily. “I wonder why a Russian would come all this way alone. I didn’t see anyone covering him.”

Lt. Scott came slipping up the tunnel, into the bunker. “What happened? Something entered the screen.”

“An Ivan.”

“Just one?”

Eric brought the view screen around. Scott peered into it. Now there were numerous metal spheres crawling over the prostrate body, dull metal globes clicking and whirring, sawing up the Russian into small parts to be carried away.

“What a lot of claws,” Scott murmured.

“They come like flies. Not much game for them any more.”

Scott pushed the sight away, disgusted. “Like flies. I wonder why he was out there. They know we have claws all around.”

A larger robot had joined the smaller spheres. It was directing operations, a long blunt tube with projecting eyepieces. There was not much left of the soldier. What remained was being brought down the hillside by the host of claws.

“Sir,” Leone said. “If it’s all right, I’d like to go out there and take a look at him.”

“Why?”

“Maybe he came with something.”

Scott considered. He shrugged. “All right. But be careful.”

“I have my tab.” Leone patted the metal band at his wrist. “I’ll be out of bounds.”

He picked up his rifle and stepped carefully up to the mouth of the bunker, making his way between blocks of concrete and steel prongs, twisted and bent. The air was cold at the top. He crossed over the ground toward the remains of the soldier, striding across the soft ash. A wind blew around him, swirling gray particles up in his face. He squinted and pushed on.

The claws retreated as he came close, some of them stiffening into immobility. He touched his tab. The Ivan would have given something for that! Short hard radiation emitted from the tab neutralized the claws, put them out of commission. Even the big robot with its two waving eyestalks retreated respectfully as he approached.

He bent down over the remains of the soldier. The gloved hand was closed tightly. There was something in it. Leone pried the fingers apart. A sealed container, aluminum. Still shiny.

He put it in his pocket and made his way back to the bunker. Behind him the claws came back to life, moving into operation again. The procession resumed, metal spheres moving through the gray ash with their loads. He could hear their treads scrabbling against the ground. He shuddered.

Scott watched intently as he brought the shiny tube out of his pocket. “He had that?”

“In his hand.” Leone unscrewed the top. “Maybe you should look at it, sir.”

Scott took it. He emptied the contents out in the palm of his hand. A small piece of silk paper, carefully folded. He sat down by the light and unfolded it.

“What’s it say, sir?” Eric said. Several officers came up the tunnel. Major Hendricks appeared.

“Major,” Scott said. “Look at this.”

Hendricks read the slip. “This just come?”

“A single runner. Just now.”

“Where is he?” Hendricks asked sharply.

“The claws got him.”

Major Hendricks grunted. “Here.” He passed it to his companions. “I think this is what we’ve been waiting for. They certainly took their time about it.”

“So they want to talk terms,” Scott said. “Are we going along with them?”

“That’s not for us to decide.” Hendricks sat down. “Where’s the communications officer? I want the Moon Base.”

Leone pondered as the communications officer raised the outside antenna cautiously, scanning the sky above the bunker for any sign of a watching Russian ship.

“Sir,” Scott said to Hendricks. “It’s sure strange they suddenly came around. We’ve been using the claws for almost a year. Now all of a sudden they start to fold.”

“Maybe claws have been getting down in their bunkers.”

“One of the big ones, the kind with stalks, got into an Ivan bunker last week,” Eric said. “It got a whole platoon of them before they got their lid shut.”

“How do you know?”

“A buddy told me. The thing came back with—with remains.”

“Moon Base, sir,” the communications officer said.

On the screen the face of the lunar monitor appeared. His crisp uniform contrasted to the uniforms in the bunker. And he was clean shaven. “Moon Base.”

“This is forward command L-Whistle. On Terra. Let me have General Thompson.”

The monitor faded. Presently General Thompson’s heavy features came into focus. “What is it, Major?”

“Our claws got a single Russian runner with a message. We don’t know whether to act on it—there have been tricks like this in the past.”

“What’s the message?”

“The Russians want us to send a single officer on policy level over to their lines. For a conference. They don’t state the nature of the conference. They say that matters of—” He consulted the slip. “—Matters of grave urgency make it advisable that discussion be opened between a representative of the UN forces and themselves.”

He held the message up to the screen for the general to scan. Thompson’s eyes moved.

“What should we do?” Hendricks said.

“Send a man out.”

“You don’t think it’s a trap?”

“It might be. But the location they give for their forward command is correct. It’s worth a try, at any rate.”
Listen to the Librivox recording here.

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

The Winter's Tale (1910)

The Winter's Tale is one of Shakespeare's plays. I much prefer seeing than reading plays, but you can read it online, if you like.

This adaptation is from 1910 and is only 12 minutes long. The surviving print is missing the final scene, so it might be helpful to check out the Wikipedia entry for a plot review before watching. I enjoy seeing these earliest of films:

The Winter's Tale (1910) from Ned Thanhouser on Vimeo.



I'm taking my coffee cup and visiting with the T Stands for Tuesday bloggers.



Join us?

Monday, January 11, 2021

Long Shot for Rosinante

Long Shot for Rosinante is a 1981 science fiction novel by Alexis Gilliland. The book focuses on the political issues behind the conflict. It's amazing how topical some of this feels. from the back of the book:
AND THEN THERE WAS ONE... 

Between Mars and Jupiter a pair of asteroids orbited. In better times three self-contained space colonies were planned to accompany them: Sancho Panza, Don Quixote, and Rosinante.

But, after the crash of 2039, Project Sancho Panza was cancelled, and Mundito Don Quixote was trashed by unpaid union workers left holding a grudge. Then, just when it seemed Mundito Rosinante would survive a few years at least, someone launched an unstoppable missile t it from near-Earth orbit!

This was the third hostile act aimed at Rosinante. To save his home and his people, Charles Cantrell -governor of the newly independent colony- would hve to discover whose hit list they were on. And why.

Sunday, January 10, 2021

Errementari: The Blacksmith and the Devil

Errementari: The Blacksmith and the Devil is a 2017 internationally co-produced Basque-language period dark fantasy horror film. I watched it dubbed in English on Netflix.

from the Netflix site:
A brutal blacksmith tortures a demon he blames for his misery, unaware a trespassing orphan is about to change everything. Based on Basque folklore.
from Wikipedia:
It tells the story of a blacksmith who holds a demon in captivity, and as a revenge for his troubles is torturing it. Later, an orphan girl releases the demon from its enclosure.
trailer:


New Horror Express calls it "a thoroughly entertaining fantasy-horror tale told with real brio and complete with visual imagination and a trio of enjoyable performances". Heaven of Horror says, "It’s a fantasy horror told from a child’s point of view. And it probably isn’t for everyone. Still, if you like fantasy, you should give it a shot!"

Horror Freak News says, "Whatever double feature you plan with your friends – make Errementari: The Blacksmith and the Devil one of the choices" and concludes with this: "put on some comfy pajamas and light up the microwave with a bag of popcorn… and prepare yourself for this delightful cinematic treat."

Saturday, January 09, 2021

An Uncertain Place

An Uncertain Place is the 8th book in the Commissaire Adamsberg Mystery series by Fred Vargas. Back in the olden days when I could spend hours browsing used book store shelves I came across a couple of these books and have enjoyed them. The team he works with is not what I'm used to, and it's always fun to find a detective who surprises.

from the back of the book:
When Commissaire Jean-Baptiste Adamsberg, the chief of police in Paris's seventh arrondissement, is called to the scene of a ghastley and highly unusual murder, he thinks it can't have anything to do with the nine pairs of shoes and severed feet discovered outside of London's Highgate Cemetery just a few days earlier. With the help of the murdered man's gifted physician, Adamsberg delves into the victim's psyche and unexpectedly finds himself on a path that takes him deep into the haunted past of Eastern Europe, where a centuries-old horror has come to life. This is an investigation unlike any that Adamsberg has undertaken before - and one that someone on the inside is ready to stop at any cost.
I've also read: #7 This Night's Foul Work

Friday, January 08, 2021

Dead Aim

Dead Aim is a 1975 spaghetti western about a traveling gravedigger who makes his own business opportunities. It has the oddest sound track of any spaghetti western I've seen.



Thursday, January 07, 2021

The Attempted Coup



The attempted coup failed, for which we can be grateful.

The horrifying beliefs and attitudes that led to it are still with us. The people who somehow believe we Democrats stole the election from Trump but left Mitch McConnell in place, the people who never met a conspiracy theory they didn't adopt wholesale, the people who have been convinced that the election was stolen and that there was massive fraud despite there being no evidence at all to support their nonsense...

These people are pitiable perhaps, having been gullible enough to fall for the grift, but they are also dangerous. They won't talk to you. No, they rant and then don't allow comments, they spout their baseless conspiracy theories and offer absolutely no evidence to support them, they accuse us of blind allegiance to our candidate (I mean have they watched the Democratic party? It's not like we are reluctant to find fault with our own, right?) while worshiping Trump and refusing to believe a bad word about him. Their practice is always Whataboutism. Their practice is always to attack us, and never to take responsibility for the actions of their own in-group. Their practice is always to accuse without providing the slightest bit of evidence while refusing to accept the evidence offered that their beloved Trump is wrong. This is, after all, the group that coined the term #AlternativeFacts.

I know life-long Republicans who do not support Trump and never have. I know conservative Independents who don't support Trump and never have. This isn't about party. This isn't about patriotism or love of country. This is about a cult. 

I welcome comments. I'll reply here.

Carl Perkins' Cadillac

Carl Perkins' Cadillac:



by Drive-By Truckers

lyrics excerpt:
Life ain't nothing but a blending up of all the ups and downs
Dammit Elvis, don't you know
You made your Mama so proud
Before you ever made that record, before there ever was a Sun
Before you ever lost that Cadillac that Carl Perkins won
*******

This post was scheduled before the stunning news of the attempted coup incited by our current president. from Wikipedia:
"The riots and storming of the Capitol have been described as insurrection, sedition, and domestic terrorism. Some sources have labeled it as an attempted coup d'├ętat. The incident was the first time the Capitol had been overrun since the 1814 burning of Washington by the British during the War of 1812."
My heart hurts. I'm in shock. If I can gather my thoughts I may post again later today.

*******

Wednesday, January 06, 2021

Three Young Kings

Three Young Kings is a 1956 episode of the DuPont Theater television series. from IMDb:
Three young boys are given the responsibility of carrying Christmas gifts to the mission church in the costumes of the Three Wise Men. When they ride through the poorest section of the village, the boys decide to give the presents to the ragged children instead, causing a crisis in conscience in the community.





Happy Epiphany!

Tuesday, January 05, 2021

A Cup of Water

A Cup of Water:



a short film by Jaden Chen. There's a Youtube channel at this link.

Water is always my drink of choice, but I do have one cup of coffee each morning. I'll be having that while I visit with the participants in the Tea Stands for Tuesday blogger gathering.

Monday, January 04, 2021

Star in the Night

Star in the Night (1945) is an Oscar-winning short film that retells the story of the Wise Men in a modern setting. This is nicely done, well worth watching.

Sunday, January 03, 2021

An American Christmas Carol

An American Christmas Carol is a 1979 adaptation of the Dickens story. This one stars Henry Winkler as the Scrooge character. I watched it online on TubiTV.

Saturday, January 02, 2021

Will Penny

Will Penny is a 1968 Western starring Charlton Heston and Donald Pleasance. Slim Pickens, Lee Majors, Bruce Dern, and William Schallert are here, too.  Part of it takes place during the Christmas season.


Roger Ebert calls it "the best cowboy movie since "Hud"" and concludes,
The admirable thing about the movie is its devotion to real life. These are the kind of people, we feel, who must really have inhabited the West: common, direct, painfully shy in social situations and very honest. "Shane" was a cowboy movie of this type. So was "Hud," although in a modern setting. And Kirk Douglas' unrecognized masterpiece, "Lonely Are the Brave," was in the same class.
Rotten Tomatoes has a critics consensus rating of 85%.

Friday, January 01, 2021

A Star Shall Rise

A Star Shall Rise is a 1952 television production of Family Theatre. Raymond Burr stars as a skeptical Wise Man who accompanies his fellow scholars who follow the star heralding the birth of the newborn king. I love how Mary is featured here as an active agent, leading people to the child and not just passive background in the scene.



Happy 8th Day of Christmas; the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God; and the Feast of the Circumcision of Christ.