They Let Me Go (a song)

February 27, 2021

They Let Me Go (a song)

Note: this is a song I wrote literally decades ago. It’s from the point of view of a character (I write fiction, too). That’s not to say that I have no connection to the way this feels…in the last couple of days, I’ve made a couple of mistakes. Sure, everybody makes them, including me, but I am always my own toughest critic. I think my coworkers would tell you, that’s one of the hardest things about working with me (there are many good things too, of course). When I think I’ve done something wrong that I should have done better, I can get down on myself. Fortunately, as an optimist and a realist, it’s always been temporary. Hope you enjoy this!

THEY LET ME GO

I was adrift in a lifeboat
And I knew we couldn’t stay afloat
Everyone else took a vote
And the word came around
That someone must drown

Well, I never took more than my share
And I worked every day I was there
But I never made anyone care
So they let me go

Our house was surrounded by ice
It was private, but we paid the price
And I was nothing if I wasn’t nice
But the word hit the breeze, that someone must freeze

Well, I never took more than my share
And I worked every day I was there
But I never made anyone care
So they let me go

Our rocket was drifting through space
And the air had bled down to a trace
I thought all of us each had our place
But the computers decide, someone’s going outside

Well, I never took more than my share
And I worked every day I was there
But I never made anyone care
So they let me go

(slowly)

The world must come to an end
There’s a definite entropic trend
And you’ll lose everyone you call friend
And don’t look to God, ’cause he’s raising his rod

(back to tempo)

Well, I never took more than my share
And I worked every day I was there
But I never made anyone care
So they let me go

Join thousands of readers and try the free The Measured Circle magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project (AKA Enwoven)! Join the TMCGTT Timeblazers!

Bufo’s Alexa Skills

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in theThe Measured Circle blog. To support this or other organizations, begin your Amazon shopping from a link on their sites: Amazon.com (Smile.Amazon.com)

Ends in 1: geeky anniversaries in 2021

January 2, 2021

Ends in 1: geeky anniversaries in 2021

Hey, little Ten Toes! Humans (at least those using the decimal system) like to observe anniversaries by the decade. This is a brief list of some of the geeky anniversaries happening this year. It is in no way comprehensive, and we certainly may add to it (and invite you to make suggestions by commenting on the post).

We arrange them by the day of the year, rather by the length of the anniversary. While I like pointing out the number of geek-friendly movie favorites released in 1960, for example, I think it will be easier for people to be aware of an anniversary based on the day of the year. I’ll try to highlight the big ones. Let me know if you like it this way better…

Oh, and after internal debate in 2018, I decided not to list the birthdates of living celebrities. Some of them may not like having their ages highlighted in this way.

I’ll call out a few I think could get media coverage, then give you a fuller list:

  • 3 January: Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Bill Gates introduce the Xbox (2001: 20 years)
  • 9 January: 3rd Rock from the Sun (1996: 25 years)
  • 19 January: From Dusk Till Dawn opens (1996: 25 years)
  • 25 January: Lucifer series debut (1996: 5 years)
  • 10 February: Deadpool 1st appearance (1991: 30 years)
  • 12 February: Deadpool movie opens (2016: 5 years)
  • 14 February: IBM’s Watson first appears on Jeopardy (2011: 10 years)
  • 11 March: THX 1138 opens (1971: 50 years)
  • 12 March: The Andromeda Strain opens (1971: 50 years)
  • 17 March: V for Vendetta opens (2006: 15 years)
  • 17 April: Game of Thrones (2011: 10 years)
  • 4 May: “May the 4th be with you” 1st celebrated as Star Wars Day (2011: 10 years)
  • 22 May: Mission Impossible opens (1996: 25 years)
  • June: 1st Animorphs book (The Invasion) published (1996: 25 years)
  • 1 June 1961: Stranger in a Strange Land published (1961: 60 years)
  • 1 June 1961: Elric of Melnibone 1st appearance (1961: 60 years)
  • 3 June: Super Mario Bros. 2 released in Japan (1986: 35 years)
  • 5 June: Teen Wolf series debut (2011: 10 years)
  • 12 June: Raiders of the Lost Ark opens (1981: 40 years)
  • 17 June: Green Lantern opens (2011: 10 years)
  • 27 June: Dark Shadows series debut (1966: 55 years)
  • 28 June: The Nutty Professor (Eddie Murphy) opens (1996: 25 years)
  • 30 June: Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory opens (1971: 50 years)
  • July: Black Panther 1st appearance (1966: 55 years)
  • 2 July 1986: Big Trouble in Little China opens (1986: 35 years)
  • 10 July: Escape from New York opens (1981: 40 years)
  • 15 July: Stranger Things series debut: (2016: 5 years)
  • 22 July: Captain America: The First Avenger opens (2011: 10 years)
  • 5 August: Suicide Squad opens (2016: 5 years)
  • 19 August: Gene Roddenberry born (1921: 100 years)
  • 28 September: The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951: 70 years)
  • 8 September: Star Trek debuts (1966: 55 years)
  • 8 September: Blue’s Clues (1996: 25 years)
  • 9 September: The Time Tunnel (1966: 55 years)
  • 12 September: The Monkees series debut (1966: 55 years)
  • 13 September: Dragon Ball Z (1996: 25 years)
  • 19 September: The Good Place series debut (2016: 5 years)
  • 27 September: Sabrina the Teenage Witch series debut (1996: 25 years)
  • 2 October: Westworld series debut (2016: 5 years)
  • 5 October: American Horror Story series debut (2011: 10 years)
  • 15 October: The Evil Dead premieres in Detroit, MI (1981: 40 years)
  • 18 October: The Electric Company series debut (1971: 50 years)
  • 23 October: Once Upon a Time series debut (2011: 10 years)
  • 2 November: Monsters, Inc. opens (2001: 20 years)
  • 16 November: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone movie opens (2001: 10 years)
  • 26 November: Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home opens (1986: 35 years)
  • 16 December: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story opens (2016: 5 years)
  • 19 December: The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring opens  (2001: 20 years)
  • 20 December: It’s a Wonderful Life premieres (1946: 75 years)
  • 23 November: Moana opens (2016: 5 years)
  • December: Wonder Woman 1st appearance (1941: 80 years)
  • 4 December: Black Mirror series debut (2011: 10 years)

===

  • 1 January: Frankenstein (Old Time Radio serial) (1931: 90 years)
  • 3 January: Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Bill Gates introduce the Xbox (2001: 20 years)
  • 5 January: Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde published (1886: 135 years)
  • 5 January: Black Scorpion TV series debuts (2001: 20 years)
  • 9 January: 3rd Rock from the Sun (1996: 25 years)
  • 12 January: Batman series debut (1966: 25 years)
  • 19 January: From Dusk Till Dawn opens (1996: 25 years)
  • 21 January: J. Carrol Naish born (1896: 125 years)
  • 22 January: Robert E. Howard born (1906: 115 years)
  • 25 January: Lucifer series debut (1996: 5 years)
  • 28 January: Supercar (1st of Gerry Anderson’s Supermarionation series) debuts (1961: 60 years)
  • 31 January: John Agar born (1921: 100 years)
  • 1 February: Battlepug comic debuts (2011: 10 years)
  • 5 February: John Carradine born (1906: 115 years)
  • 10 February: Lon Chaney Jr. born (1906: 115 years)
  • 10 February: Deadpool 1st appearance (1991: 30 years)
  • 12 Frebruary: Deadpool movie opens (2016: 5 years)
  • 14 February: Irvin S. Yeaworth Jr. born (1926: 95 years)
  • 14 February: IBM’s Watson first appears on Jeopardy (2011: 10 years)
  • 20 February: Richard Matheson born (1926: 95 years)
  • 2 March: Spaces Cases series debut (1996: 25 years)
  • 6 March: Lou Costello born (1906: 115 years)
  • 7 March: Felix Enriquez Alcala born (1951: 70 years)
  • 11 March: THX 1138 opens (1971: 50 years)
  • 12 March: The Andromeda Strain opens (1971: 50 years)
  • 17 March: V for Vendetta opens (2006: 15 years)
  • 20 March: The Final Conflict opens (1981: 40 years)
  • 22 March: Williams Shatner born (1931: 90 years)
  • 24 March: Joseph Barbera born (1911: 110 years)
  • 25 March: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice opens (2016: 5 years)
  • 27 March: Nintendo 3DS is released in North America (2011: 10 years)
  • 11 April: Critters opens (1986: 35 years)
  • 17 April: Game of Thrones (2011: 10 years)
  • 4 May: “May the 4th be with you” 1st celebrated as Star Wars Day (2011: 10 years)
  • 7 May: Ishiro Honda born (1911: 110 years)
  • 15 May: L. Frank Baum born (1856: 165 years)
  • 17 May: The Cat Creep Opens (1946: 75 years)
  • 20 May: Gardner Fox born (1911: 110 years)
  • 22 May: Mission Impossible opens (1996: 25 years)
  • 27 May: Vincent Price born (1911: 110 years)
  • 31 May: The Arrival opens (1996: 25 years)
  • June: 1st Animorphs book (The Invasion) published (1996: 25 years)
  • 1 June: Stranger in a Strange Land published (1961: 60 years)
  • 1 June: Elric of Melnibone first appearance (1961 60 years)
  • 3 June: Super Mario Bros. 2 released in Japan (1986: 35 years)
  • 6 June: Invaders from Mars remake opens (1986: 35 years)
  • 12 June: Clash of the Titans opens (1981: 40 years)
  • 12 June: Raiders of the Lost Ark opens (1981: 40 years)
  • 15 June: Trapped by Television (1936: 85 years)
  • 15 June: Lara Croft, Tomb Raider opens (2001: 20 years)
  • 17 June: Green Lantern opens (2011: 10 years)
  • 18 June: The Food of the Gods (1976: 45 years)
  • 23 June: Logan’s Run opens (1976: 45 years)
  • 27 June: Dark Shadows series debut (1966: 55 years)
  • 28 June: The Nutty Professor (Eddie Murphy) opens (1996: 25 years)
  • 29 June: Bernard Herrmann born (1911: 110 years)
  • 30 June: Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory opens (1971: 50 years)
  • July: Black Panther 1st appearance (1966: 55 years)
  • 2 July 1986: Big Trouble in Little China opens (1986: 35 years)
  • 10 July: Escape from New York opens (1981: 40 years)
  • 15 July: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 opens (2011: 10 years)
  • 15 July: Stranger Things series debut: (2016: 5 years)
  • 17 July: Multiplicity opens (1996: 25 years)
  • 22 July: Captain America: The First Avenger opens (2011: 10 years)
  • 3 August: Tales of Tomorrow debuts (1961: 70 years)
  • 5 August: Suicide Squad opens (2016: 5 years)
  • 7 August: Heavy Metal opens (1981: 40 years)
  • 8 August: Hold That Ghost opens (1941: 80 years)
  • 10 August: The Others opens (2001: 20 years)
  • 18 August: The Return of Count Yorka premieres in Los Angeles (1971: 50 years)
  • 19 August: Gene Roddenberry born (1921: 100 years)
  • 21 August: An American Werewolf in London (1981: 40 years)
  • 23 August: The Island of Dr. Moreau (Marlon Brando) opens (1996: 25 years)
  • 24 August: The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy series debut (2001: 20 years)
  • 26 August: Otto Binder born (1911: 110 years)
  • 30 August: Child’s Play 3 opens (1991: 30 years)
  • 8 September: Blue’s Clues (1996: 25 years)
  • 9 September: The Time Tunnel (1966: 55 years)
  • 12 September: Stanislaw Lem born (1921: 100 years)
  • 12 September: The Monkees series debut (1966: 55 years)
  • 13 September: Dragon Ball Z (1996: 25 years)
  • 19 September: The Good Place series debut (2016: 5 years)
  • 22 September: ALF debuts (1986: 35 years)
  • 27 September: Sabrina the Teenage Witch series debut (1996: 25 years)
  • 28 September: The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951: 70 years)
  • 1 October: The First Men in the Moon by H.G. Wells published (1901: 120 years)
  • 2 October: Jack Finney born (1911: 110 years)
  • 2 October: Westworld series debut (2016: 5 years)
  • 5 October: American Horror Story series debut (2011: 10 years)
  • 14 October: Jack Arnold born (1916: 105 years)
  • 14 October: Michael Sloan born (1946: 75 years)
  • 15 October: James H. Schmitz born (1911: 110 years)
  • 15 October: The Evil Dead premieres in Detroit, MI (1981: 40 years)
  • 16 October: Frisky Dingo series debut (2006: 15 years)
  • 18 October: The Electric Company series debut (1971: 50 years)
  • 22 October: Lady Frankenstein (La figlia di Frankenstein) released (1971: 50 years)
  • 26 October: Donnie Darko opens (2001: 20 years)
  • 26 October: Thir13en Ghosts opens (2001: 20 years)
  • November: Baffling Mysteries comic debuts (1951: 70 years)
  • 2 November: Monsters, Inc. opens (2001: 20 years)
  • 13 November: Hermione Baddeley born (1906: 115 years)
  • 16 November: Carrie opens (1976: 45 years)
  • 17 November: Justice League series debut (2001: 20 years)
  • 18 November: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them opens (2016: 5 years)
  • 23 November: Moana opens (2016: 5 years)
  • 25 November: Poul Anderson born (1926: 95 years)
  • 26 November: Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home opens (1986: 35 years)
  • 29 November: The Fistic Mystic (Popeye) opens (1946: 75 years)
  • December: Wonder Woman 1st appearance (1941: 80 years)
  • 4 December: Black Mirror series debut (2011: 10 years)
  • 8 December: Lee J. Cobb born (1911: 110 years)
  • 11 December: Hook opens (1991: 30 years)
  • 16 December: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story opens (2016: 5 years)
  • 19 December: The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring opens  (2001: 20 years)
  • 20 December: It’s a Wonderful Life premieres (1946: 75 years)
  • 21 December: Sing (2016: 5 years)
  • 27 December: Aharon Ipale born (1941: 80 years)

Join thousands of readers and try the free The Measured Circle magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project (AKA Enwoven)! Join the TMCGTT Timeblazers!

Bufo’s Alexa Skills

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the The Measured Circle blog. To support this or other organizations, begin your Amazon shopping from a link on their sites: Amazon.com (Smile.Amazon.com)

2 unforgettable, stay-in-place friendly gifts you can get for $10 and up

December 13, 2020

2 unforgettable, shelter-in-place friendly gifts you can get for $10 and up

Looking for inexpensive (and up) stay-in-place friendly gifts? Just wanted to share two that I’ve used:

  • https://www.cameo.com/ These are customized short videos from a wide range of celebrities. I know someone who is a fan of The Walking Dead. We found an actor who was on the show (a small part, but the recipient will know who he was). For $10, he’s recording a video they’ll be able to have, where he says their name and (we don’t have it yet) what I wrote for him. Obviously, they can decline something you write. These are actors, but also athletes, musicians, influencers, and so on. There are current celebrities, but also retro favs. They start under $10 and then go way up (it seems like the prices have gone up around the holidays, understandably). Some of them also do texts, which are much less expensive. Obviously, they need to time to make them, so I wouldn’t wait much longer
  • Amazon Explore (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*) is a service with one-on-one, live, virtual experiences around the world. You can have someone show you something and it often involves training. Those start at about $20. You can have as many people in a room watching it as you want, but you can’t share the experience with people in different places. There are some really great things available here, like visiting an animal conservancy, getting a history lesson, or being taken shopping in an exotic place (of course, you’ll pay for something you actually buy if you want). I’ve suggested to Loren Coleman of the International Cryptozoology Museum that they do this: I’d pay $50 to have a virtual tour like that! I support it, but have never seen it. I think this is a great way to go for venues that can’t be open right now

Enjoy!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. 

Shop ’til you help! 

Join thousands of readers and try the free The Measured Circle magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project (AKA Enwoven)!Join the TMCGTT Timeblazers!

Bufo’s Alexa Skills

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in theThe Measured Circle blog

#EyedentityGame smashes 100 correct barrier!

December 5, 2020

EyedentityGame smashes 100 correct barrier!

I launched my #EyedentityGame Twitter activity earlier this year, and have now done literally hundreds of them.

I post a picture of the eyes of a celebrity (generally, an actor or musician, but I’ve done a scientist & others. I don’t intend to do politicians, although some people may in some ways be both). I give players roughly a day to guess who it is, then I reveal the whole picture.

I only use public domain (not under copyright protection) pictures. There are actually quite a few of those. It was common for studios to put out publicity shots without the required (depending on when it was) copyright notice. That might have been on purpose: getting wide distribution was part of the point. Government pictures can also be public domain (so someone who entertains the troops may appear that way, as one example).

I decided to tag correct guessers when I revealed the answer. That’s turned out to be a lot of work, but it feels like it’s worth it. It’s hard because scrolling back through my Twitter feed & typing the handles into a document isn’t easy. Twitter hides some tweets, and I have to notice that and expand a section. Some handles are quite complex, using zeroes for the letter O, for example, and it can be hard to tell an L from a 1 or an I. A typo can mean I can’t find the handle again. In some cases, they might also leave Twitter between the time they guess and the next morning.

However, people love the recognition: not just for themselves, but for each other!

That’s the best part. I refer to it as the #EyedentityGame community, and really it feels like one. They support each other, joke with each other. That’s important to note: this isn’t a competition with winners and losers. I think of it as a group activity with me and the players. The more who get it right, the better I like it! When a celebrity only gets a few correct answers, I feel kind of bad about that. I’m not good at guessing which ones will be easily recognized, but I want to honour these people who almost always have contributed something to my life (I’m an eclectic content consumer so I generally am familiar with the work of anybody I post).

However, I was guessing that yesterday’s was going to be well recognized…and it was!

I chose Leonard Nimoy and it was a picture of him as Spock.

Picking a subject is one of my challenges (challenges are fun for me) every day.

First, I have to think of someone. 😉

Then, I look for a public domain picture. I generally use Wikipedia. They do a good job of labeling the rights. I should mention, I say “public domain”, but in some cases, the pictures have been licensed for general use without attribution by the rightsholder. I want it without attribution just because there isn’t space on Twitter for it, and it might lead people to finding the picture too easily. I ask people not to post the source photo with their guesses (that happened a few times early on) to let other people have more of a chance to guess.

It’s possible that the celebrity that was my thought doesn’t have a picture I can use. I need a pretty good picture of the eyes. I’ve found that looking directly into the camera improves guessers’ accuracy: side eye is hard, as I think someone said.

I would have preferred a picture of Nimoy not as Spock: I like a more neutral shot, since it’s the celebrity being guessed, not a character. There was a shot of him from Mission: Impossible, but it was a group shot and his face was just too small to use.

Lots of regulars got it, but there were also many newbies, which I really appreciate!

Regulars know that I enjoy creative guesses, as long as I can tell who you mean (if I can’t, I may ask). For example, if someone said the guess was “logical” this time, even with no reference to Nimoy, I counted that. Some newbies didn’t really make a guess, just said that they thought it was obvious…I couldn’t count that without clarification.

Well, I’ve counted 118 correct! That smashes the old record of 92 held by Moe Howard since September 24th. I guess it was a battle of the bowl cuts. 😉 I’ve been wanting to get 100 right since I started tracking it regularly back on 5 June with Josephine Baker (although I had started the game months before that). The average right now is 31. I’ve been asked sometimes about percentage correct: I don’t track guesses that aren’t the picture. That would be a lot more complicated, especially if I wanted to track who every guess was, and people who know me know I’m a very positive person: I’m much more interested in the positive achievement.

Thank you to all of my players! You bring a lot of joy to my life and I look forward to it every day.

Join thousands of readers and try the free The Measured Circle magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project (AKA Enwoven)!Join the TMCGTT Timeblazers!

Bufo’s Alexa Skills

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in theThe Measured Circle blog

New to streamers 2 December 2020: Wowsers!

December 2, 2020

New to streamers 2 December 2020: Wowsers!

I tweet new movies to streamers from time to time, but right now there were so many I wanted to mention, it would have been way too unwieldy. This is truly a remarkable time for movie buffs at home. The competition between streamers, both those for which you pay a subscription fee & ones that are ad-supported is surely driving these opportunities. If you are willing to pay for your movies by watching ads, there are great choices, whether you are looking for cult/genre movies or box office draws, contemporary or vintage.

I do this using

https://www.justwatch.com/

a free app I highly recommend. I’ll be writing this from the perspective of the USA, but you can set it for other countries, too. I’m only listing some of the ones that caught my eye: there are many, many more listed there.

These are all available at no additional cost: for example, they could be included in a monthly/annual fee you pay, or as I mentioned, supported by advertisers.

These are also available on demand, so you can watch them when you want. If you are interested in just “tuning in” to whatever is on right then, I’m loving

Airy.TV

another free ad-supported app. They have some really good movies & TV shows (I’m seeing a lot of shows I haven’t seen in years), but again, you just go with the flow. Right now (presumably, during December) they have not one but two holiday channels: Holiday Specials & Holiday Cartoons.

Okay, on to movies!

Peacock TV (free tier)

  • Batman Begins, The Dark Knight
  • The Goonies
  • Tremors (and sequels)
  • Se7en
  • Beetlejuice
  • Crazy Stupid Love
  • Serenity (the Firefly movie)
  • Space Jam (Michael Jordan & Bugs Bunny)
  • Problem Child (and sequel)
  • Wet Hot American Summer
  • Seeking a Friend for the End of the World
  • The Blues Brothers 2000
  • The Road to Wellville
  • The Gambler (Kenny Rogers)

HBO Max (over 100 added recently!)

  • Final Destination (and sequels)
  • The Blind Side
  • The Shawshank Redemption
  • Gladiator
  • Sex and the City (2008 movie) (and sequel)
  • Hero (2002, Jet Li)
  • Unfaithful (Richard Gere, Diane Lane)
  • Misery
  • Robots
  • Hot Fuzz
  • Shaun of the Dead
  • Deep Blue Sea
  • The Crow
  • Snakes on a Plane
  • Mars Attacks!
  • Demolition Man
  • The Girl with All the Gifts
  • The Last Samurai
  • Striptease (Demi Moore)
  • Phantom Thread
  • Outbreak
  • Rock of Ages
  • Spawn
  • Billy Elliot
  • Soylent Green
  • Juice
  • Harry and the Hendersons
  • Risky Business
  • The Omega Man
  • Gods and Monsters
  • Westworld (the original movie)
  • Blow-Up
  • Capricorn One
  • Logan’s Run
  • Less Than Zero
  • The Shop Around the Corner (1940)
  • THX 1138
  • Love Story
  • The Champ (Jon Voight, Ricky Schroder)
  • Meet Me in St. Louis
  • Joe Versus the Volcano
  • The Bishop’s Wife
  • Gun Crazy (1950)
  • The Stunt Man
  • 3 Godfathers (and Three Godfathers)
  • It Happened on 5th Aveue
  • Young Man with a Horn
  • The Man Who Came to Dinner
  • Susan Slept Here
  • Amistad
  • No Blade of Grass

Prime Video

  • 2012
  • The Hurt Locker
  • The Pursuit of Happyness
  • Goldfinger
  • Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle
  • O Brother, Where Art Thou?
  • Spanglish
  • The King’s Speech
  • Diary of a Mad Black Woman
  • Charlotte’s Web (1973)
  • Quigley Down Under
  • Full Moon High
  • Outlaw’s Son (Dane Clark)
  • The Gate

Netflix

  • E.T.
  • Monster House
  • 50 First Dates
  • Jurassic Park (and Lost World & III)
  • The Da Vinci Code (and Angels & Demons)
  • The Happytime Murders
  • Little Nicky
  • Chef
  • You Got Served
  • Runaway Bride
  • Madea’s Big Happy Family
  • The Christmas Chronicles 2
  • Hillbilly Elegy

Pluto TV

  • Scary Movie (and 2)
  • Sleepy Hollow
  • The Ghost and the Darkness
  • Journey to the West
  • The Taking of Pelham One Two Three (1974)
  • Dracula (Gary Oldman)
  • Cujo
  • The Crazies (2010)
  • Dances with Wolves
  • The Dead Zone
  • Silver Bullet
  • El Mariachi
  • Kingpin
  • Look Who’s Talking
  • The Ides of March
  • Layer Cake
  • Robot Jox
  • Game of Death
  • Remains of the Day
  • Cat Ballou
  • Kramer vs. Kramer
  • St. Elmo’s Fire
  • Dear White People
  • And Justice for All
  • The Prince of Tides
  • I’m Gonna Git You Sucka
  • Mary Reilly
  • V/H/S
  • Europa Report

Tubi (I have to say, they seem to particularly respect their videos, trying to find good places to do ads, and knocked it out of the park with their new additions, 261 on 30 November alone)

  • Kung Fu Panda
  • A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010)
  • Anaconda
  • Pet Sematary (1989)
  • Cujo
  • Step Up
  • Daredevil
  • Blair Witch (2016)
  • The Bank Job (2008)
  • The Little Rascals (1994)
  • Jumper
  • Police Academy
  • Sin City
  • Roman J. Israel, Esq.
  • House of 1000 Corpses
  • Deuce Bigalow Male Gigolo
  • The Monuments Men
  • Reign of Fire
  • Max Payne
  • I, Frankenstein’
  • Escape from Alcatraz
  • The Wrestler (Mickey Rourke)
  • Drillbit Taylor
  • Bad Company
  • TMNT (2007)
  • Nine
  • White Men Can’t Jump
  • The Woman in the Window (1944)
  • Kate & Leopold
  • Rudy
  • Attack the Block
  • Dead Presidents
  • The Man with the Golden Arm
  • Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex* | *But We’re Afraid to Ask
  • The Most Dangerous Game (1932)
  • Saturday the 14th
  • Brenda Starr
  • The Wicked Lady

Hulu

  • Teen Wolf
  • Marie Antoinette
  • The Lord of the Rings
  • Dr. No (and other James Bond movies)
  • The Fifth Element
  • 30 Days of Night
  • Eyes Wide Shut
  • Con Air
  • Hulk
  • I Know What You Did Last Summer
  • Cliffhanger
  • The Client
  • Euphoria
  • Under the Tuscan Sun
  • Any Given Sunday (1999)
  • Sunshine
  • The Hand That Rocks the Cradle
  • The 6th Day
  • About Last Night
  • Love Potion #9
  • West Side Story
  • Black Dynamite
  • Sleeping with the Enemy
  • The Color of Money
  • Sands of Iwo Jima

The Roku Channel (recently available on Fire TV devices)

  • Sinister
  • Megamind
  • Blade Runner
  • Nacho Libre
  • The Age of Adaline
  • The Big Short
  • The Adventures of Tintin
  • The Golden Child
  • Timecop
  • Short Circuit
  • Letters from Iwo Jima
  • Quiz Show
  • Terms of Endearment
  • The Preacher’s Wife (1996)
  • Major League
  • Michael
  • Senior Trip

There…are you not entertained? 😉

Feel free to suggest others by commenting on this post or replying on Twitter.

Join thousands of readers and try the free The Measured Circle magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project (AKA Enwoven)!Join the TMCGTT Timeblazers!

Bufo’s Alexa Skills

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in theThe Measured Circle blog

What are Twitter Fleets & why I think they’ll succeed

November 18, 2020

What are Twitter Fleets & why I think they’ll succeed

Twitter was all a-flitter yesterday when a major new feature was introduced.

That doesn’t particularly surprise me.

I’m a trainer by profession, and I do process improvement. I’ve taught change management. It’s pretty simple: the majority of people don’t like change.

That doesn’t mean that everybody doesn’t like every change. Humans are both neophiliac (new loving) and neophobic (afraid or disliking the new). The most successful content tends to be things in which the brain can recognize familiar patterns (reassuring) in unfamiliar circumstances (exciting), such as a sequel or a twist on a comfortable genre (for an excellent book on this see Hit Makers ((at Amazon Smile)) by Derek Thompson).

However, it’s a rare person who likes having a routine interrupted, even if it is made better.

That’s because of something called “memory chunking”. Humans are great at memorizing a sequence…and forgetting the individual steps.

When I demonstrate this, I’ll say to someone, “Quick! Tell me the 5th number in your phone number.” I have plenty of time, typically a second or more, to stop them before they actually do that. On the other hand, if I asked them to tell me their phone number, they could have done it immediately.

The fifth digit is one “click” (people who do user interfaces love to count clicks): the whole number is 7 or 10 or 11 clicks, depending on how you think of it. Yet, one click took longer than seven clicks. Why?

The phone number has been “chunked” into a single memory unit & stored for easy retrieval. They aren’t recalling each number individually. There has been no reason to label the fifth number for easy retrieval, so it has to be extracted from the chunk, which is hard to do.

So, when Twitter made a change yesterday which broke the sequence of how people did existing things, it “brupted” them, as one of my parents likes to say. It was an offputting abrupt change.

Not only was there something new in the environment (account avatars at the top of your homescreen…on a phone, by the way, not on a computer), but things were missing.

I actively use two Twitter accounts:

They are different and I want to know which one I’m using when I’m replying to or liking a tweet. I used to be able to see my avatar (profile picture) in my top left corner, but that’s been replaced by a menu indicator (horizontal lines), so it’s not as obvious.

Sure, that was a bit troubling…no big deal, though. My feathers are hard to flap…you know, I tend to be “unflappable”. 😉

Even though I would think that relatively few people switch between multiple Twitter accounts the way I do, that change likely caught people off guard: it’s also how you get to your profile easily.

A change, and Twitter did little that I could see to manage it. There wasn’t some sort of announcement I saw first, to tell me what wasn’t changing (the most important part of change management), and to connect it to my “drivers” (things that motivate me). My first awareness was seeing that Fleets was trending…I honestly thought Star Trek’s Starfleet first.

When I started looking, the most common reaction was, “What’s a Fleet?” Several referenced Fleet enemas! 🙂

I found a Twitter blogpost first:

https://blog.twitter.com/en_us/topics/product/2020/introducing-fleets-new-way-to-join-the-conversation.html

then looked for it in their Help Center:

https://help.twitter.com/en/using-twitter#fleets

I’ll share my overview of what Twitter Fleets are, and respond to objections I saw expressed.

I’m going to assume here that you are already a Twitter user and know how to tweet.

A Fleet is a “fleeting tweet”: it disappears after 24 hours.

That’s the key differentiator, but not the only thing. The public doesn’t see likes and replies.

Fleet something (it could be text, a video, an image…even a live capture of a photo or video). It’s gone in a day and no one can endorse it or condemn it in situ.

This takes away (for the most part) the “internet is forever” problem, where you apply for a job and they find some embarrassing photo, or opinion you expressed ten years ago, and decide you won’t fit in with the team.

I say for the most part, because someone can screenshot it or use screen recording software.

This is not like Twitter generally, where, unless you delete them, your Tweets are hypothetically forever (I’ve been on Twitter for more than 10 years…my first tweets can still be seen).

It is, though, like some other services.

That’s the first big objection I saw: “Twitter isn’t Instagram or Snapchat: why would I want two places like that?”

That comes from “fluency bias”, which seems pretty common to me in technology. It’s the assumption that most people are as familiar with something as you are.

My guess is that Twitter has the highest percentage of single platform users of any major social media service. It’s been around long time. Entry is relatively easy. “Old media” stars and public figures use it. If someone joined Twitter to follow a politician, a broadcast TV show, or a store (to get offers), that doesn’t mean they also join Instagram or Snapchat.

For them, this is new!

It also means that you don’t have to go to a different app to post something ephemeral. That’s one of the hardest things when using computers (including SmartPhones): going somewhere else. I loved it when a student of mine said, “I want what I want to be where I’m looking now.” Exactly.

That doesn’t mean people will necessarily drop another service and use this instead, of course, although some might.

That’s another issue: “binary bias”. That suggests that everything is a choice between this or that. “Why would I use a Fleet instead of IG?” You can use both. Sometimes one is right. Sometimes another is right. Sometimes both. Sometimes neither.

One of my main areas of focus has been e-books. I got that all the time in the beginning and still see it. Someone will give one way that a p-book (paperbook/physical book) is better than an e-book as a reason to never use e-books. You can use both or one or the other. I can’t think of something where there isn’t another thing that is better than it in some element.

Here are the basics for how to Fleet:

  1. Be on your homescreen (the little house in your bottom left, usually) in Twitter on your phone
  2. Tap the “Add” button in your top left
  3. It will default to your gallery, where you pictures/screenshots/downloaded images are…it may have a different name or default, possibly, but that’s what I see
  4. At the bottom of the screen, you can choose to change it to Text, Capture (“live” from our camera), or video
  5. Create or select it
  6. Tap Fleet in your top right corner

While the Fleet exists, you can see how many (and who) have viewed your own Fleets by looking at it.

It hasn’t been long enough for one to disappear yet, but my guess is that I won’t have a record of it when it’s gone.

Speaking of seeing…

You can tap on an avatar at the top of your homescreen to see the Fleet. If that account has more than one active, it will show them to you sequentially. Then, it automatically moves to the next account, like a slideshow which is running.

You can also see someone’s Fleets on their Profile page, although I haven’t found that myself yet.

If you follow each other, you’ll see a place at the bottom to message the account…but it’s a private DM (Direct Message). No one else sees it. You have no awareness of the popularity or interactions with another account’s Fleets (unless popularity determines the order in which the avatars appears, not sure about that. It appears to favor my tweeps, people I follow and such.

The next question: why Fleet?

It will take a while for the community to figure out what works. The first YouTube video was “Me at the Zoo”…yes, it’s had over 100 million views by now (it’s had more than 15 years), but I don’t think they were picturing Gangnam Style or unboxing videos at that point. 😉

So far, I’ve seen mostly “Hello, world” style, or ones questioning why they were Fleeting (many first tweets are like that, too).

I have, though, seen commercial accounts Fleeting.

That’s going to be part of it.

For example, you could run a contest, maybe a book giveaway, that lasts a day. You don’t have to worry about someone stumbling on it five years later and being mad they missed it. You could promote a show running that night without confusing people a week later.

My Fleets, still visible at the time I write this, alert people to upcoming movies/TV shows on the free ad-supported streamer, Airy TV. I’m not connected with them accept as a viewer.

Airy.TV: a great free (ad-supported) streamer for TV & movies

I may do the same thing with Tubi, Pluto…other streamers.

I’ve done tweets listing “new to streamers”: that might be better in a Fleet. I have had it happen that people find something that’s quite old and tell me why it is inaccurate today, not realizing that it was right when I wrote it (in this case, it would be possible that a movie I said was on a particular streamer might not be years later).

Another big thing is going to be “reaction shots”. You might have a shocked or positive reaction to an event, but not want that out there forever. It could also just be a snapshot in time.

Oh, that brings up an obvious question: NSFW (Not Safe For Work) content. I get that sometimes in my Twitter feed. If you see a Fleet that you feel is inappropriate for everyone, you can report it, or you can mute that account (so you don’t see anything they do again) in your top right corner of the Fleet…there is a little chevron there, a dropdown. I’m sure that will happen.

I also expect, if it succeeds, that we’ll see it written into crimefighting dramas on TV. The “bad guy” posts a picture or video of the crime in progress (maybe a kidnapee), but if vanishes before they hear about it. Twitter says it may hold on to Fleets for a while, if they look…let’s go with suspicious.

Something else I expect: a game. Clues are fleeted once a day. That would get engagement. A movie studio could do the same thing: Fleet a single picture a day from an upcoming movie.

I do have a few questions and concerns:

  • Is there a record of the metrics I can see…how many people viewed it? That would make a difference for A/B analysis of what worked best
  • I’d prefer that the icons for tweet/DM/Fleet were more differentiated…maybe by color background, or putting speed lines on the Fleet. More than once on my phone, I’ve accidentally tapped Fleet when I went to share
  • Do I get a notification if someone tags me in a Fleet?
  • I don’t see a way to delete a Fleet

Speaking of that last one (deletion), that’s the other big complaint I saw on Twitter. They did this, but didn’t give us spellcheck or revising a posted Tweet? I’m always amused by that. “You can fly now!” “Yes, but am I super strong?” 😉 There is some impact of finite resources in a company, but the same people building Fleets might not be building a revision feature.

I also had someone explain to me why a revision feature would be a lot trickier than it seems. Suppose you had like a Tweet, and then the person revised it to express the opposite opinion? You would appear to be endorsing something you don’t. That’s not insurmountable (a revision could place interactions into an invisible holding state, awaiting reapproval from the reactor), but it’s complicated.

I expect we’ll still have Fleets as a feature three years from now, but we’ll see. It may become a thing like Vine was to just let the Fleets scroll by, maybe while waiting in line or for something to load. No scrolling, no interaction.

What do you think? Will you create Fleets? Will you view them? What should be changed? Feel free to let me and readers know by commenting on this post or interacting with me on Twitter…you could even Fleet, but I might not see it. 😉

Join thousands of readers and try the free The Measured Circle magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project (AKA Enwoven)!Join the TMCGTT Timeblazers!

Bufo’s Alexa Skills

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in theThe Measured Circle blog

Airy.TV: a great free (ad-supported) streamer for TV & movies

November 11, 2020

Airy.TV: a great free (ad-supported) streamer for TV & movies

I know, I know: another streamer, right? 😉 As regular readers know, we use a lot of streamers: HBO Max, Disney+, Prime Video, Netflix, Hulu, Pluto, Tubi, Peacock, YouTube…I wasn’t really looking for another one.

However, I saw Wesley Eure (@WesleyEure on Twitter) mention that he’d run across his show, Land of the Lost (he played Will), on something called Airy.TV.

I love those Sid and Marty Krofft shows, so that got me to check it out.

I’ve been enjoying it! I’ve seen shows I haven’t seen in years, including Forever Knight & Automan. They have movie channels that I can just leave running: a Godzilla channel, a musical channel…wait, before I get too much into the content, let’s get a little higher level. Here are some key points:

  • It’s free! It is ad-supported, but the ads aren’t intrusive (unlike some streamers). They don’t interrupt a movie: typically, there might be a roughly thirty second ad when you change channels, before the show starts. You don’t even need to create an account, although you can
  • The app is available for Fire TV & I also watch it on my Android phone. You can watch it on the web, and while I haven’t done it, it’s available for iOS (for iPhones and such)
  • This is strictly streaming: no on demand. That means you watch what they put on when they put it on. In that way, it’s like old-fashioned TV. There are plenty of options, though. You also can’t pause or rewind
  • Generally, the video quality is good, but I have run into some TV shows that look like VHS videotapes
  • I’m writing about this in the USA and just as a user. The website has information for people who want to advertise on the service, and for those who want to provide a stream. There is a Rewards program for viewers, but I haven’t investigated that
  • The interface is simple: you can watch full screen. You can mute or not. Shows/movies thumbnail at the top first, then you can select them to make them full screen. There are two themes (I’ve only used one). I haven’t seen any search capability. The programs don’t have descriptions, just titles. For a TV show, for example, it doesn’t tell you the episode or give you a summary
  • They have responded to me: good customer service! I spotted a typo (no big deal), mentioned it to them, and it got fixed. I don’t know, of course, that it was just me that mentioned it, but it may have been
  • One curious thing: when I select a TV show, even a few minutes after the hour/half hour, it seems to start at the beginning: not sure if that’s coincidental or clever programming
  • I haven’t seen closed captioning as an option

So, basically, I just…watch. 🙂

Now, let’s talk about content!

Note that this is just a snapshot of how it is right now, as I’m writing: even the channel availability can change. They had a couple of Halloween-related channels in October, for example.

  • Celebrity Scene TV Live (this appears to be contemporary showbiz news)
  • Newsmax
  • FightTV
  • SportsTV
  • Camera Smile TV (this seems to be Candid Camera type bits, but not sure)
  • Spydar TV (it appears to be an eclectic set of black and white older shows, but I’m not entirely sure…haven’t watched it much yet)
  • Kartoon Funtime
  • Classic Comedy
  • Cartoon Classics
  • Lone Ranger
  • Airy Westerns
  • Travel & Food TV
  • Race Central
  • 70’s Classics (Vega$ is on right now)
  • Dragnet (yes, all Dragnet, all the time! Many channels are like this)
  • The Streets of San Francisco
  • Open House
  • Rope 2 Rope (wrestling)
  • Movie Channels: right now there are five “generic” movie channels: running titles at this moment include:
    • The Lifeguard
    • Fargo
    • Gone in 60 Seconds
    • Crocodile Dundee 2
  • XTREME Movies: Warren Miller; Higher Ground
  • Classic Movies section
    • Classics: Ma and Pa Kettle at Waikiki
    • Classics 2 Happy is The Bride
    • Western Club: Joe Dakota
    • Western Club 2: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
    • Western Club 3: West of the Divide
    • Godzilla TV: Godzilla vs. Mechagodzila 2 (I can just turn this channel on any time and be happy)
    • Blaxploitation: Golemite
    • Kung Fu Movies: Warriors of the Steppe
    • Monsters, Aliens, &…: It Came from Beneath the Sea
    • Screen Sirens: Ladies of the Chorus (this is nicely curated)
    • Musicals: The for the Show (I can just have this running for my Significant Other and myself, which is not a good choice with Godzilla. 😉 I’ve seen My Sister Eileen, The Gang’s All Here (a Carmen Miranda vehicle), and more
  • Classic TV Series section (channels here have a variety of shows
    • 50’s Classics: I Married Joan
    • 50’s Classics 2: The Restless Gun
    • 60’s Classics: Petticoat Junction
    • 60’s Classics 2: The Munsters
    • 60’s Classics 3: Flipper
    • 70’s Classics: Vega$ (same as above…the top section has featured channels)
    • 70’s Classics 2: The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams
    • Horror TV: Captain Kronos Vampire Hunter
    • Sci Fi TV: Space Patrol (this is another one I can just leave on…Buck Rogers, Time Tunnel, Misfits of Science, Tomorrow People…)
  • Classic TV section (this tends to be only one series: maybe the section names should be swapped?)
    • Gimme a Break!
    • The Greatest American Hero
    • Midsommer Murders
    • Doctor Who
    • McHale’s Navy
    • Highlander (strangely, this one appears to list the episode titles)
    • Dragnet
    • The Bob Newhart Show
    • The Rifleman
    • Degrassi TV
    • Gomer Pyle
    • Hogan’s Heroes
    • Dukes of Hazzard
    • My Three Sons
    • Rockford Files
    • Highway to Heaven
    • Bonanza
    • Renegade
    • Green Acres
    • The Commish
    • Sanford and Son
    • Moonlighting
    • The Man Show
    • The Jeffersons
    • Mission:Impossible
    • The Three Stooges
    • MXC (Most Extreme)
    • 21 Jump treet
    • Barney Miller
    • Columbo
    • The Fugitive
    • My Little Margie
    • Bewitched
    • Perry Mason
    • The Streets of San Francisco
    • Are You Being Served
  • Classic Kids section
    • Classic Cartoons: Felix the Cat
    • 90s Cartoons: Doug
    • 80’s Cartoons: He-Man
    • 70’s Cartoons: Fat Albert
    • Tom and Jerry TV
  • TV Shows
    • Encore+: The Odd Couple
    • Celebri-TEA: Actually Me
    • Talk Shows: Last Week with John Oliver
    • Bob Ross
    • How It’s Made
  • Reality section
    • Kitchen Night: Kitchen Nightmares
    • Judge TV: Divorce Court
    • OMGnetwork: Real and Chance
    • Reality Pleasure: Beauty and the Geek
    • Money Makers: Barter Kings
    • Conspiracy: The Exodus Decoded
    • Hell’s Kitchen
    • Hoarders
    • Ice Road Truckers
    • The Maury Show
    • Duck Dynasty
  • Comedy
    • David Spade
    • Shade: Wild N’ Out WildStyle
    • Comedy Central: Key & Peele
    • British Comedy: The Goodies
    • Just for Laughs
  • Food & Travel section
    • Wanderlust: Cambodia
    • Bon Appetit: Sweet Potato Casserole
    • Disaster Channel: Rogue Boeing 737
    • Open House: Property Virgins
  • Documentaries section
    • World Documentary: Cash: A Thing of the Past
    • Ancient Aliens
    • Wildlife: Natural Curiosities
    • Military: Starting Strong
    • Deep Space: Death of the Earth
  • Thriller section
    • True Crime: Mugshots
    • Medicale Detectives
    • Fright Night: Nightmare on Elm Street Kill Count Vol. 1
    • Paranormal: Ghost Stories
    • Real Stories: Too Posh to Pay
    • Crime Stoppers: Dog the Bounty Hunter
    • Crime Stoppers: Woman Behind Bars
  • Espanol section
    • TV Espanola: La Reina del Sur
    • TV Espanola: La Fea Mas Bella
    • TV Espanola: El Zorro la espada y la rosa
    • Captiva TV
  • Sports section
    • Rugby
    • Table Tennis
    • Climbing
    • Ultimate Frisbee
    • Gymanstics
    • Curling
    • Golf
    • Roller Derby (looks like contemporary)
  • Music Section
    • Music Videos: Guns N’Roses
    • Top of the Pops: TOTPS 1996 (on deck is TOTPS 1980)
    • Vintage Radio

Wow, right? 🙂

Note again that this just a snapshot right now: there will be different movies & TV shows when you check, and possibly different channels.

I’m confident that I can always find something on Airy.TV to watch…accessible to me anywhere.

I don’t know how much turnover there will be…it’s possible that six months from now, I feel like I’ve seen a lot of it, but that may not be the case. Besides, there is a lot available, and I don’t mind watching something more than once (with some time between viewings).

Does this replace my other services? Nope. There are definitely times I’m going to watch a particular show. However, it definitely supplements it, being a choice when I just want to have something on that I want to watch, and when I want to be surprised. A lot of what it has isn’t available on my other streaming services.

Enjoy!

Join thousands of readers and try the free The Measured Circle magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project (AKA Enwoven)!Join the TMCGTT Timeblazers!

Bufo’s Alexa Skills

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in theThe Measured Circle blog

How was Halloween 2020? Unprecedented

November 1, 2020

How was Halloween 2020? Unprecedented

I’m truly happy that some people are saying Halloween 2020 was their best ever.

While I like to say that I have a genetic abnormality (I’m an optimist), I can’t say that for me.

That’s not to say I thought it was bad…I’m still me, even in 2020. 😉

However, this was the first year in my life that I didn’t, in person, see one other person (outside of my Significant Other) actually celebrating Halloween.

Nope, not a kid in a costume, not an adult in a costume.

As far as we could tell, no one got very near to our house. We thought we heard some people walking by one side, maybe across the street, but nothing triggered our doorcam.

Now, it’s understandable that they didn’t come up to the door: we strung signs across the walkways saying, “Sorry, no treats this year. Happy Halloween!”

However, we had decorated. We got a compliment on that ahead of time. I set up a rear projection on our front windows, which normally attracts some people.

Nothing.

It reminded me a bit of the Halloween when the Zodiac Killer was active. The previous year, we’d had hundreds of kids (we did somewhat elaborate “haunted houses”). That year? Under 50.

We normally get about 20 groups where we live now, but not this year.

So, what was fun?

We did a #Virtualloween at work, and it went really well! I was hosting and had put together the agenda. It was a video conference call, and everybody was in costume! Since it was virtual, several people also matched their backgrounds to their costumes.

We did trivia (hosted by someone else): that worked!

Then, we did virtual breakout rooms: smaller groups, where we talked about treats or costumes or decorating or books/TV/movies/music. That was more successful than I thought it was going to be! I should have allowed more time, but then it was

#Scaryoke

time!

We did Monster Mash and Ghostbusters. I was hoping people would sign up to take verses, but that didn’t happen much. That’s okay, I could take the lead (I do a good Monster Mash voice!). Others sang along, especially the choruses.

The houses were well-decorated in our neighborhood! I think more than usual. I’m also guessing that people will leave decorations up longer…it won’t surprise me if I see them a month from now…just as a distraction.

Another positive?

Great streaming options! Pretty much any type of Halloween related movie or TV show was available to me. Oh, not every title, but every type.

Summing up, I’m going to say it was the saddest Halloween for me…but there was still some good in it, and I’m already looking forward to next year!

Feel free to share how your Halloween was with me and my readers by commenting on this post or letting me know on Twitter (this will be tweeted automatically).

Join thousands of readers and try the free The Measured Circle magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project (AKA Enwoven)!Join the TMCGTT Timeblazers!

Bufo’s Alexa Skills

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in theThe Measured Circle blog

Halloween movies by mood

October 29, 2020

Halloween movies by mood

I’ve already done a post with a long list of Halloween movies on a variety of streaming services:

Screamers on streamers: Halloween gems on Netflix, Disney+, Prime, HBO Max, Peacock, and more!

However, while I have added some descriptions there, it’s much more useful for readers who are already familiar with the movie titles. It has everything from kids’ movies to R-rated fare, and only separates them by streamer and time released.

I thought some of you might appreciate a shorter list divided by “moods”…if you aren’t familiar with them, it should help you pick something to watch, including depending on your audience.

All of these are available at no additional cost, meaning that they are either free or included in what you are paying for a streamer. This list is for the USA.

Note: I hope to keep adding to this! Please feel free to ask me about specific movies or for recommendations by commenting on this post or reaching out to me on Twitter https://twitter.com/bufocalvin

Last thing: we may not agree on the categorizations! Something I might consider mild you might find objectionable…and vice versa. 🙂

Spooky

These movies may be scary, but I would consider them appropriate for kids…no explicit sexual content or gore.

  • Dracula (1931): the Lugosi original (Peacock TV free)
  • Son of Frankenstein (1939): while a later entry, you can watch it without seeing the earlier ones. Karloff plays the monster, Lugosi is Ygor (Peacock TV free)
  • Dr. Cyclops (1940): mad scientist shrinks people (Peacock TV free)

Drive-In

  • It Came from Outer Space (1953): Jack Arnold directs Richard Carlson (Peacock TV free)
  • The Blob (1958): Steve McQueen (HBOMax)
  • The Killer Shrews (1959): (Prime Video, Tubi, Shout TV)

Weird

I think it’s better to approach these without me giving you any context…

  • Spider Baby (1967) (Prime Video)
  • Matango (1963) (Prime Video, Tubi)
  • The Manster (1959) (Prime Video, Tubi, Epix, Classic)

Highbrow

  • The Incredible Shrinking Man (1957) (Peacock TV free)
  • The Shout (1978) (Prime Video, Epix)

Funny

  • Zombieland (2009): (Peacock TV free)
  • A Bucket of Blood (1959) (Prime Video)
  • The Addams Family (1991) (Prime Video)
    • Addams Family Values (Prime Video)
  • I Married a Witch (1942): Veronica Lake stars in this movie that clearly influenced Bewitched (HBOMax, Watch TCM, The Criterion Channel)
  • Bell, Book and Candle (1958): Another influence on Bewitched, starring Jimmy Stewart & Kim Novak (Pluto)

Silent

  • Nosferatu (1922) (Prime Video)
  • The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (Prime Video)
  • The Phantom of the Opera (1925): Lon Chaney (Prime Video)

Gonzo

  • The Devil’s Rain (Prime Video)
  • Killer Klowns from Outer Space (Prime Video)

Eco-Horror

  • Frogs (Prime Video)

Musical

If you think of musicals as Judy Garland and Gene Kelly, these aren’t that! They may be quite dark and/or have sexual content/violence…still, people sing along!

  • The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1974): arguably, the ultimate cult movie! When Disney+ was launched, it was clearly parts of their Fox library weren’t going to show up there…Disney said they’d put them on Hulu. That’s where this one is (Hulu)
  • The Rocky Horror Picture Show: Let’s Do the Time Warp Again (2016): Fox TV remake starring Laverne Cox (Hulu)
  • Repo! The Genetic Opera (2008): Anthony Head, Paul Sorvino, Sarah Brightman: this has a Rocky Horror appeal, released a generation later. There’s a pandemic, but this has to do with a company repossessing organs (Prime Video, Tubi)
  • Anna and the Apocalypse (2017): it’s an R-rated high school zombie musical! (Prime Video, Hulu, Epix)

Socially relevant

  • The Stepford Wives (1975): Katharine Ross…based on Ira Levin’s book about gender relations (Prime Video, Tubi)

https://measuredcircle.wordpress.com/2020/08/30/how-to-trick-or-treat-in-2020/


Join thousands of readers and try the free The Measured Circle magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project (AKA Enwoven)!Join the TMCGTT Timeblazers!

Bufo’s Alexa Skills

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in theThe Measured Circle blog

Screamers on streamers: Halloween gems on Netflix, Disney+, Prime, HBO Max, Peacock, and more!

October 9, 2020

Screamers on streamers: Halloween gems on Netflix, Disney+, Prime, HBO Max, Peacock, and more!

There’s never been a better time to watch Halloween movies at home! With all the streamers (streaming video services) competing for audience, a lot of content which would have been hard to find is just a click (or remote button…or voice command, or…) away!

This time, I’m going to keep it high level, but break it down by streaming service. We subscribe to several (some are free perks for other services for which we pay), but they also generally offer a free trial…you might do that right before Halloween.

Note that these aren’t all the offerings…or all the streamers…or even all the ones I watch! That’s how many options there are. 🙂 If you want to add more suggestions, feel free to do so by commenting on this post (or on Twitter, if you see this there first). I may also add to it myself (including descriptions): I wanted to get this out for the weekend…getting close to Halloween!

One last note before we start unreeling: these are based on USA availability. I recommend the free app JustWatch: you can set your country and streaming services there.

Want to thank me for this? Please take a look at my suggestion on how to safely keep the trick-or-treat traditions going in 2020, and if you like it, share it freely…you don’t need to ask permission or even to attribute it to me. I love Halloween & just want to help:

https://measuredcircle.wordpress.com/2020/08/30/how-to-trick-or-treat-in-2020/

Peacock (free tier, but I’ll also be including Peacock Premium here)

  • The Universal horror cycle which started in the 1930s: this is the crown jewel of Peacock for me, and possibly, of any of the streaming services 😉 . Dracula, Frankenstein, the Wolfman…here’s my article on it: Home Film Festival: Universal Classic Horror on Peacock TV July 2020. These are available on the free tier unless I note them as PREMIUM
    • Dracula (1931): starring Bela Lugosi…the classic! (also on DIRECTV, Watch TCM)
      • Dracula’s Daughter (1936): starring Gloria Holden
      • Son of Dracula (1943): Lon Chaney Jr.
    • Frankenstein (1931) PREMIUM: Boris Karloff…it’s alive!
      • The Bride of Frankenstein (1935): includes Elsa Lanchester…routinely gets listed among superior sequels
      • The Ghost of Frankenstein 1942: Lon Chaney Jr. as “the monster”
      • Son of Frankenstein (1939): Boris Karloff is back as “the monster”, Bela Lugosi plays Ygor
    • Werewolf of London (1935): Henry Hull…years before the Lon Chaney Jr. definitive establishment of The Wolfman, some elements are in place
    • The Wolf Man (1941) PREMIUM: Lon Chaney Jr….Dracula, Frankenstein, and The Invisible Man were all based on novels (although Dracula took a lot from the stage play based on the novel), while Curt Siodmak’s brilliant original script had many convinced it was based on existing folklore
    • The Invisible Man (1933): Claude Rains: directed by James Whale, it has humor, and clever writing…but still scary (also on IndieFlix)
      • The Invisible Man Returns (1940): Vincent Price is falsely accused of murder, but when he becomes invisible, he tries to clear his name
      • The Invisible Woman (1940): strictly a comedy with Virginia Bruce, John Barrymore, and Margaret Hamilton
      • The Invisible Man’s Revenge (1944): Jon Hall & John Carradine
    • Frankenstein Meets the Wolfman
    • House of Dracula
    • Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein
    • Abbott and Costello Meet The Invisible Man
    • Abbott and Costello Meet the Mummy
    • Abbott and Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
    • Phantom of the Opera (Claude Rains)
    • The Mummy PREMIUM
      • The Mummy’s Hand
      • The Mummy’s Ghost
      • The Mummy’s Curse
    • The Creature (from the Black Lagoon) Walks Among Us (the original movie had been on Peacock, but isn’t now: looks like it is on DIRECTV)
  • Here are some others (free tier & premium…if it’s premium only, I’ll note that):
    • Pre 1980
      • Island of Lost Souls PREMIUM: 1932, Charles Laughton is Doctor Moreau, Bela Lugosi is the Speaker of the Law…”Are we not men?”
      • The Incredible Shrinking Man (sci-fi horror): 1957, Grant Williams…this is a thoughtful movie, but I included it because it does have some horror to it, and it’s a great movie! Marginally Halloween, though
      • Brides of Dracula (Peter Cushing)
      • The Evil of Frankenstein (Peter Cushing)
      • The Phantom of the Opera (Herbert Lom)
      • It Came from Outer Space
      • The Curse of the Werewolf (Oliver Reed)
      • The Strange Case of Doctor Rx
      • Dr. Cyclops
      • The Raven
      • Night Monster (Bela Lugosi)
      • Psycho PREMIUM
      • The Birds PREMIUM
    • 1980-2010
      • Sleepaway Camp
      • Dead Ringers
      • Hollow Man
      • House of the Dead
      • Dawn of the Dead (2004)
      • The Grudge (2004)
      • Zombieland
      • Monster House
      • Hellboy II: Golden Army
      • Haunting in Connecticut
    • 2011-
      • It Follows
      • Jigsaw
      • Da Sweet Blood of Jesus (Spike Lee)
      • Final Girl
      • Tyler Perry’s Boo 2!
      • Bigfoot (Danny Bonaduce)
      • Zoombies
      • You Should Have Left PREMIUM
      • The Purge PREMIUM
      • R.I.P.D. PREMIUM

Prime Video

  • Pre 1980
    • Nosferatu (1922)
    • The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari
    • The Phantom of the Opera (1925: Lon Chaney)
    • Don’t Look Now
    • Spider Baby
    • Dementia 13
    • The Comedy of Terrors
    • Vampire Circus
    • The Beast Must Die
    • Season of the Witch
    • The Day of the Triffids
    • The Shout
    • The House That Dripped Blood
    • Bug
    • Squirm
    • The Creeping Flesh
    • Twins of Evil
    • Frogs
    • A Bucket of Blood
    • Night Tide
    • Trilogy of Terror
    • Beyond the Door
    • Alligator
    • Children Shouldn’t Play with Dead Things
    • The Devil’s Rain (William Shatner)
    • Frankenstein and the Monster from Hell
    • Planet of the Vampires
    • Phase IV
    • A Chinese Ghost Story
    • The Crazies (1973)
    • Captain Kronos: Vampire Hunter
    • Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)
    • Night of the Living Dead (1968)
    • Phantasm
    • Last House on the Left
    • The Stepford Wives (1975)
    • The Tenant
    • Diabolique
    • X: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes
    • Dr. Phibes Rises Again
    • Matango
    • Manos: The Hands of Fate
    • The Island of Dr. Moreau (1977)
    • Blacula
    • Lady in a Cage (Olivia de Havilland)
    • The Little Girl Who Lives Down the Lane (1976)
    • Carnival of Souls
    • The Little Shop of Horrors
    • House on Haunted Hill (1959)
    • Alice, Sweet Alice
  • 1980-2010
    • Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein
    • Night of the Demons
    • Q
    • Dead Heat (1988)
    • City of the Living Dead
    • Escape from New York
    • Humanoids from the Deep: 1996, Emma Samms, Robert Carradine…this is not a monster movie for kids, it’s an R-rated, raunchy Roger Corman produced movie
    • Labyrinth
    • Dance of the Dead
    • Mausoleum
    • Dolls
    • Waxwork (1988)
    • Lord of Illusion
    • Transylvania 6-5000
    • Witchboard
    • Bloodrayne
    • C.H.U.D.
    • Creature (1985: Klaus Kinski)
    • Dark Night of the Scarecrow (1981)
    • Phenomena (Dario Argento)
    • The Addams Family (1991)
      • Addams Family Values
    • Resident Evil (2002)
    • Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007)
    • Fright Night (1985)
    • Hellboy (2004)
    • Bride of Re-Animator
    • Poltergeist II
    • Wishmaster (1997)
    • The Gift (2000)
    • Little Monsters (1989)
    • Silent Hill (2006)
    • Monsters (2010)
    • 30 Days of Night
    • Delicatessen
    • Ju-On The Grudge
    • Children of the Corn (1984)
    • The Mothman Prophecies
    • The Haunting (1999)
    • Vampires (John Carpenter)
    • I Spit on Your Grave (2010)
    • Repo! The Genetic Opera
    • Killer Klowns from Outer Space
    • The Midnight Meat Train
    • The Stuff
    • The Relic
    • Motel Hell
    • My Bloody Valentine
    • Species
  • 2011-
    • The Lighthouse (2019): Robert Pattinson, Willem Dafoe…an 1890s R-rated horror piece set at a lighthouse
    • Midsommar (2019): Florence Pugh, running afoul of an old religion today…reminded me a bit of The Wicker Man (R)
    • The Vast of Night (2020): Sierra McCormick…a thoughtful 1950s period piece about flying saucers and a small town radio station (PG-13)
    • Willow Creek (2013)
    • Hereditary (2018): Toni Colette (R)
    • Train to Busan
    • I See You
    • Crawl
    • Zombeavers
    • The Lazarus Effect
    • The Addams Family (2019 animated)
    • The Cabin in the Woods (2012)
    • The Wailing
    • The Neon Demon
    • Child’s Play (2019)
    • Suspiria (2018)
    • Pet Sematary (2019)
    • The Love Witch (2016)
    • The Lords of Salem
    • Anna and the Apocalypse
    • Hatchet

Netflix

  • Pre 1980
    • The Car
  • 1980-2010
    • The Silence of the Lambs (1991): Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins…lauded psychological horror with Dr. Hannibal Lecter (R)
    • Pan’s Labyrinth
    • Poltergeist
    • The Witches (1990)
    • The Evil Dead (1981)
    • Underworld
    • House of 1000 Corpses
    • Bhoot
    • Anaconda
    • The Witches (1990): Nicolas Roeg directs Anjelica Huston, Mai Zetterling, and Rowan Atkinson in this version of the Roald Dahl story (there is a 2020 version, see HBO Max)
  • 2011-
    • Dark Skies
    • House at the End of the Street
    • As Above, So Below
    • The Boy
    • Death Note (2017)
    • The Bye Bye Man
    • Hubie Halloween
    • Bird Box
    • Veronica
    • In the Tall Grass
    • Apollo 18
    • Vampires vs. the Bronx
    • The Girl with All the Gifts
    • It Comes at Night

Disney+

  • Pre 1980
    • Ichabod and Mister Toad
    • Blackbeard’s Ghost
  • 1980-2010
    • Hocus Pocus: an annual watch event for many…Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, Kathy Najimy
    • The Haunted Mansion
    • The Nightmare Before Christmas
    • Return to Oz (very scary: I’d call it a horror movie)
    • Halloweentown
    • Monsters, Inc.
    • Twitches
    • Mr. Boogedy
    • Mom’s Got a Date with a Vampire
    • The Scream Team
    • The Ghosts of Buxley Hall
  • 2011-
    • Maleficent
      • Maleficent: Mistress of Evil
    • Frankenweenie
    • Girl vs. Monster
    • Coco
    • Zombies

HBOMax

  • Pre 1980
    • Jaws (1975): Roy Scheider…Spielberg’s movie that really established the summer blockbuster. I’ve always felt it was a monster movie, although I know others disagree (PG-13)
    • Vampyr (1932)
    • I Married a Witch
    • Alien (1979): Ridley Scott directs Sigourney Weaver in the original series starter…in space, no one can hear you scream (R)
    • Carnival of Souls
    • House (1977)
    • Night of the Living Dead
    • Scanners
    • Blithe Spirit
    • Day of the Dead
    • The Blob (1958)
    • Eyes Without a Face
    • The Brood
    • Piranha
    • Magic
    • Equinox
    • Kwaidan
    • The Curse of Frankenstein (1957)
    • Horror of Dracula (1958: Christopher Lee)
    • Godzilla (1954)
      • Many Godzilla and other Kaiju movies!
  • 1981-2010
    • Little Shop of Horrors (1986)
    • The Haunting (1999)
    • Vampire in Brooklyn
    • Lifeforce
    • I Was a Teenage Zombie
    • Dreamscape
    • Leprechaun
    • The Hitcher (1986)
    • The Hills Have Eyes (2006)
    • Constantine
    • Teen Witch
    • Signs
    • Death Becomes Her
    • Scooby-Doo (2002)
    • The Frighteners
    • Jeepers Creepers
    • The Ruins
    • Devil
  • 2011-
    • The Invisible Man (2020): Elizabeth Moss…Universal’s modern take focuses on a woman not being believed (also on DIRECTV)
    • Red Riding Hood (2011)
    • The Devil Inside
    • Doctor Sleep (2019): Ewan McGregor, long-awaited sequel to The Shining has a grown-up Danny (R)
    • Us (2019): Jordan Peele writes and directs Lupita Nyong’o in a movie about identity (R)
    • It Chapter II
    • Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019)
    • The Conjuring 2
    • The Curse of La Llarona
    • The Witches (2020): Robert Zemeckis directs Anne Hathaway & Octavia Spencer is this new version of he Roald Dahl story (Guillermo del Toro is a producer & co-screenwriter). The 1990 version is on Netflix

Hulu

  • Pre 1980
    • The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1974-R): cult tribute to old horror and sci-fi that is so much more, including an iconic performance by Tim Curry….they also have the 2016 version with Laverne Cox
  • 1980-2010
    • Twilight (2008): Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner…series starter based on the bestselling books about modern vampires & werewolves (PG-13) (also on The Roku Channel)
    • The Host
    • Interview with the Vampire
    • Let the Right One In
    • Hellraiser
    • Children of the Corn
    • Elvira, Mistress of the Dark
    • Double, Double, Toil and Trouble (the Olsen Twins)
  • 2011-
    • The Lodge
    • Crawl
    • The Addams Family (animated 1999)
    • Cabin in the Woods (2012)
    • The Wretched
    • Child’s Play (2019)
    • Wolfcop
    • I, Frankenstein
    • The Rocky Horror Picture Show: Let’s Do the Time Warp Again (new version with Laverne Cox in the role Tim Curry originated)

Tubi

  • Pre 1980
    • Suspiria (1977)
    • The Crazies (1973)
    • The Boys from Brazil
    • The Little Shop of Horrors (1960)
    • Attack of the Killer Tomatoes
    • Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)
    • Night of the Living Dead
    • Beyond the Door
    • War of the Colossal Beast
    • The Brain That Wouldn’t Die
    • The Gorgon
    • Dracula (Jack Palance)
    • The Angry Red Planet
    • Schlock
    • Attack of the Crab Monsters
    • The Medusa Touch (Richard Burton)
    • Dr. Terror’s House of Horrors
    • Demon Seed
    • Devil’s Rain
    • The Last Man on Earth (1964)
    • The Day of the Triffids
    • Squirm
    • Horror Express
    • Destroy All Monsters
    • The Creeping Flesh
    • Blood Feast
    • The Tingler
    • A Bucket of Blood
    • Night Tide
    • Phantasm
    • The Stepford Wives (1975)
    • Nosferatu (1922)
      • Nosferatu: The Vampire (1979)
    • The Cabinet of Caligari (1920)
    • Black Christmas
    • Carnival of Souls
    • Plan 9 from Outer Space
    • House on Haunted Hill (1959)
    • The Hills Have Eyes (1977)
    • Tales from the Crypt (1972)
    • Rabid
    • Cat O’Nine Tails
    • Black Sunday
    • Blood for Dracula
    • The House That Dripped Blood
    • Spider Baby
    • The Beast Must Die
    • Season of the Witch
    • 20 Million Miles to Earth
    • Day of the Animals
    • Dementia 13
    • Gargoyles
    • Scream Blacula Scream
    • Vampire Circus
    • Thirst
    • Eaten Alive (1976)
    • Matango
    • Manos: The Hands of Fate
    • Shock Wave
  • 1980-2010
    • The Descent
    • The Dunwich Horror
    • Let the Right One In
    • Witchtrap
    • It Waits
    • Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
    • Hellraiser
    • Mausoleum
    • Dance of the Dead
    • Hell Night
    • Vamp
    • Wishmaster
    • The Uninvited (2009)
    • Basket Case
    • Bones
    • Forbidden World
    • Death Race 2000 (1975)
    • Elvira, Mistress of the Dark
    • Little Monsters
    • Dog Soldiers
    • Stage Fright
    • Once Bitten
    • Waxwork
    • Witchboard
    • C.H.U.D.
    • Wraith
    • City of the Living Dead
    • Creature
    • Repo! The Genetic Opera
    • The Haunting (1999)
    • Bubba Ho-Tep
    • Night Breed
    • Hatchet
    • Ju-On The Grudge
    • Children of the Corn
    • Killer Klowns from OUter Space
    • Battle Royale (2000)
    • Ginger Snaps
    • Rubber
    • Troll Hunter
    • House of 1000 Corpses
    • Sleepaway Camp
    • 30 Days of Night
    • Re-Animator
    • The Return of the Living Dead
    • The Stuff
    • Chopping Mall
    • House (1985)
    • Lair of the White Worm
    • The Ninth Configuration
    • Cloverfield
    • Teeth
    • An American Werewolf in Paris
    • Day of the Dead (1985)
    • Humanoids fro the Deep
    • The Midnight Meat Train
  • 2011-
    • Train to Busan: Korean movie about martial law imposed because of an epidemic
    • The Host
    • Wolf Cop
    • Chillerama
    • Evil Dead (2013)
    • Cockneys vs Zombies
    • The Wailing
    • Tales of Halloween
    • Zombeavers
    • The Mothman of Point Pleasant
    • Da Sweet Blood of Jesus
    • The Void
    • The Last Witch Hunter

That should satisfy pretty much anybody’s Halloween movie needs! Feel free to add more by commenting on this post or replying on Twitter.

Want to thank me for this? Please take a look at my suggestion on how to safely keep the trick-or-treat traditions going in 2020, and if you like it, share it freely…you don’t need to ask permission or even to attribute it to me. I love Halloween & just want to help:

https://measuredcircle.wordpress.com/2020/08/30/how-to-trick-or-treat-in-2020/


Join thousands of readers and try the free The Measured Circle magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project (AKA Enwoven)!Join the TMCGTT Timeblazers!

Bufo’s Alexa Skills

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in theThe Measured Circle blog


%d bloggers like this: