Saturday, December 10, 2005

I shot a man in Reno just to watch him die, Charlie Brown

If you put "Walk The Line" and "Ray" next to each other, you'd probably find they are basically the same movie. Take a famous musician who has recently died, but gave his blessing for a movie to be made about him before his death. The story goes through his childhood when he had a brother die tragically. This affects him the rest of his life. Flash forward to him getting a start in the music business by having a sound no one had ever heard. The story then goes through his career that features problems with womanizing, drugs and alcohol and then recovery.

They're the same movie, but they're also two of my favorite movies of the last year. As believable as Jamie Foxx was as Ray Charles, Jocquin Phoenix was as Johnny Cash. At first, when I heard Phoenix was going to play Cash, I wasn't sure. However, he both looked and sounded like man who had a black wardrobe.

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In the spirit of "It's Christmas, Charlie Brown," from the sportsjournalists.com message board, here are names for Charlie Brown specials because sports journalists are funny and weird. None of these are mine:

Linus Likes You That Way, Charlie Brown
You Made Your Parents Drink Themselves To Death, Charlie Brown
Chlamydia Isn't A Flower, Charlie Brown
It's Gonorrea, Charlie Brown!
The DNA Test Says He's Yours, Charlie Brown
Downloading Porn Will Make You Blind and Poor, Charlie Brown
The very special episode starring Woodstock: "It's The Bird Flu, Charlie Brown"
It's A Threesome, Charlie Brown
The Little Red Haired Girl's Real Name is Albert, Charlie Brown
Who Farted, Charlie Brown?
Dr. Hal Bosley Prefers To Graft Your Back And Ass Hair On To Your Head, Charlie Brown
Pigpen Wants To Take A Bath With You, Charlie Brown

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Back to Johnny Cash, "Folsom Prison Blues" is one of the greatest songs ever recorded. "Cocaine Blues," too. And yeah, "I Walk The Line" and "Ring of Fire." They've all been stuck in my head for hours, but at least I'm not a boy named Sue.

See? I have a soft spot in my heart for country music. Just not for the junk made today. What made Cash great was that he was one of the most versatile musicians of any time period. He crossed genres. I don't think Kenny Chesney or any of these people could do what Cash could do.

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