Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The End Of The World (Disc Two)

For quite a while, my heart and Master Card belonged to Deep Discount DVD (or as I used to refer to it, My Beloved Deep Discount DVD). Then Deep Discount DVD became just plain Deep Discount and changed its website, and I dunno, some of the love vanished.

But my heart and my Master Card never go unused for long. I discovered the truly bizarre shopping pleasures of Big Lots, where you never know what DVDs you might find, but whatever you do find, it'll only cost $3 (most recently, I bought Chinatown and Terms of Endearment and Sunset Boulevard there, which is a lot of cinema history for nine bucks total).

Even more Beloved to me these days is the Warner Archives store, or WBshop.com (which I always read as WBishop.com and wonder why a Bishop would be emailing me). They make no-nonsense overpriced DVDs of the kinds of movies I love, and I've bought many classic and not so classic Warner Bros. movies of the 1940s from them.

A couple of weeks ago, I discovered that the Bishop had put together a five pack of Irwin Allen disaster movies. My heart positively palpitated from the thrill, and I would claim my Master Card jumped out of my wallet, except the Bishop can already recite its numbers by heart.

A week later, the movies arrived. I scoffed at Chinatown and Terms of Endearment and Sunset Boulevard, and promptly watched Flood! in which Martin Milner and Robert Culp save as many people as possible from the raging flood waters. The next night I watched Cave In! which was so thrilling I meant to devote an entire blog entry to it, but I forgot. The night after that I watched Hanging By A Thread! Parts One And Two. A tram got hit by lightning and dangled for over two hours and Patty Duke made things much worse by lighting a cigarette and her husband threw the match onto the floor when it landed in some spilt lighter fluid and he caught fire. How fabulous is that! No one even said to Patty Duke, "Well, what do you expect, lighting a cigarette in a closed tram that could fall thousands of feet any second now, and with a child in it too." They just put the fire out and screamed, not necessarily in that order.

So last night, I decided to watch The Night The Bridge Fell! Disc One. And hard though it is to believe, it was the best of all (well, I haven't seen Fire! yet, but I don't see how it can beat The Night The Bridge Fell! Disc One). Desi Arnez Jr. is a bitter and psychotic bank robber (what a combination), and Leslie Nielsen and Barbara Rush are embezzler/lovers who ended up on the bridge at the exact same time, in separate cars, and Leslie Nielsen has his little baby son, who I don't think has a name, in his car and the baby is sick and screams on cue (unless those are sound effects and not brilliant baby acting). Oh, and there's a guy whose daughter was hit by a car in a flashback but I think he said the daughter was going to be okay, and there's a cop and there's his former girlfriend who's decided to become a nun and is driving a nine year old blonde girl orphan to her brand new adoptive parents, and the cop and the former girlfriend soon to be nun are both on the bridge at the same time also. This is the Bridge Of Broken Coincidences. Meanwhile James MacArther has the Martin Milner role (the bridge is gonna fall; toldya so). And at the very end of Disc One, another part of the bridge falls into the river, thus giving this opus not one but two money shots, and who knows what'll happen in Disc Two.

I won't. I was so excited by all this that I promptly put Disc Two in the DVD player, and it wouldn't load. It said LOADING LOAD and then it stopped.

I tried multitudinous times. I tried putting the disc in upside down (hey, it's an Irwin Allen picture; you never know). Today I tried again, hoping for a next day miracle. Then I removed the DVD of Dallas Season One that I've been exercycling to in my bedroom and put the now infamous Disc Two in, but it didn't work there either.

I am devastated. I am desperate to know what happens next. I know the orphan and the baby will survive because no child ever died in an Irwin Allen movie (as I was watching last night, I thought to myself how cheerfully I violated that rule in the dead and the gone). But who knows who Desi Arnez Jr. might shoot next or who might end up on the wrong side of the collapsing bridge. I sure don't.

I emailed the Bishop and explained in great detail what the situation was (they asked for it, by saying they more they knew, the better they'd be able to solve the problem). I'm assuming they'll replace the DVD, ideally by sending a monsignor over right away to hand deliver it to me.

Le sigh. In the meantime, I suppose I could watch Fire! which has both Donna Mills and Vera Miles, not to mention Patty Duke, who probably starts the fire with another of her cigarettes. But I sure do want to know about that bridge and how much more of it is going to fall down in the next 97 extremely glorious, if currently unwatchable, minutes!


Anonymous said...

OMG I know your pain!!! I bought the full Gilligan's Island series a few years ago and on disk will not work! I shall never know what happens! *sigh* I can't immagine what it is like with a great disaster movie just sitting there mocking you, "Sue. Sue. Sue. Play me. Play me. I'm wonderful. Wait, I won't work. Just look at me." If that movie won't work, you should watch Deep Impact. That is a fantastic movie about a comet that crashes into the Earth. There is a love story in there. Also there is a story about a news reporter who has NO expression. It is so annoying. It's a great movie, though. Another great movie is The Core. The core stops spinning, and the scientists have to try to get it to restart itself. It's very cool except nothing can stay in shape in the molten core. The ship that was meant would save the world would have melt and everybody would have died. Lovely ending (that I would have wanted). I'm glad you defied the "no killing kids" rule. I think it is more realistic. Children don't have force fields around them that protect them from everything. I hope your DVD works, and if it doesn't the pope should take you a new one. LOL :-)

P.S. I am going to rent those movies that you mentioned in the entry.

Anonymous said...

That last entry was by me. . . Sunshine :-). When it was posted, it was chopped off. Sorry abou that one.

Mr. Cavin said...

Hey, try that disc in your computer. Many high-speed DVD-Rom drives like in the newish laptop) will play stuff stripped-down household players might choke on. If the disc is truly broken it still won't work, but if it's just screwed up a little bit it might. At least it's something to try out while you are waiting for the monsignor.

Susan Beth Pfeffer said...

Hello and thank you to Sunshine and Mr. Cavin-

Sunshine, these are truly terrible made for TV movies. I love them, but that's because I have no taste. So if you do rent them, be prepared.

And Mr.Cavin, you are a genius. I just tried playing Disc 2 in my computer, and it worked.

It's too late to watch it now (I spent the evening getting my heart broken by Dancing With The Stars), but I know what I'll be doing tomorrow night!

Susan said...

Your love of cheese disaster movies is truly awesome. :o)

I myself love the more recent cheese disaster movies, most notably The Day After Tomorrow. For whatever reason, though, I could NOT get into 2010.

-The Other Susan

Susan Beth Pfeffer said...

Hi Susan-

I know. I have perfect dreadful taste (or perfectly wonderful lack of taste).

I used to read disaster novels of that era. I still have extremely fond memories of Slide! (heck, I still have a copy). There's this mudslide in California, and a bunch of people are stuck in a convenience store...

What can I say? It was a classic!

Nina said...

I still love Twister and the Tommy Lee Jones one that takes place in LA... Volcano? Earthquake? Something like that :*) I also love the Day after Tomorrow, but it breaks my librarian's heart to watch the destruction of the NYPL! (and the burning of the books to keep warm...)

Lisa-Marie Jordan said...

Martin Milner?!? From Adam-12? OMG, LOVE him! These sound like totally awesome movies that I've never heard of but would probably enjoy! I'll have to look for them!

Anonymous said...

It's me, Sunshine :-). You do have good taste. If you didn't why would I love your books? You have great taste. I'm sure of that because if you didn't your books would be just plain. . .Blah. FYI I don't like Dancing With the Stars too.

Susan Beth Pfeffer said...

Hi to Nina and Lisa-Marie Jordan and Sunshine-

I skipped right over your intelligent comments to gnash my teeth over the continuing saga of Disc 2.

But I did read them and think about all the different disaster movies I've seen in my life. Maybe someday I'll figure out why I enjoy them so!