What Happened to the Sex and the City Girls?


Sex and the City

Let’s start with my favorite character:  Samantha

Who can forget her dirty quips and hilarious take on sex?  Samantha had so much fun with her sexuality and wasn’t the typical woman with relationships.  In my opinion, she made the show.  Unfortunately, Kim Cattrall recently confirmed that she doesn’t want to play Samantha in the future.  Many fans (including me) were very disappointed about this.  But I can’t blame her for wanting to move on.  Currently, she is filming a show called Tell Me A Story, and from what I read about it, it seems like it’s going to be awesome!  It takes the beloved fairytales The Three Little Pigs, Little Red Riding Hood, and Jack and the Beanstalk and gives them a dark and murderous twist.  According to her Instagram, the filming for this show started July 16, 2018.  A release date hasn’t been set yet, but I’m definitely going to check it out when it’s released.  Good luck on the show Kim!

And check out her Instagram:  @kimcattrall

Samantha

Miranda (played by Cynthia Nixon) was the tough-love type in Sex and the City.  She was a lover and a fighter.  Her relationship with Steve gave us hope that even when things aren’t working out the greatest in a relationship, love defeats all.  Now, Cynthia Nixon is running for governor of New York.  Her democratic platform involves lessening racism and homophobia.  Even though we have come so far in making things equal for all, there is still so much more progress that needs to occur.  I watch a lot of her speeches, and she seems like she would really help the state out.

And check out her Instagram:  @cynthiaenixon

cynthia

Carrie (played by Sarah Jessica Parker) knew her true love was Mr. Big.  He sure wasn’t easy to get to, though.  He broke her heart so many times in the show, but she kept trying because she couldn’t imagine her life with anyone else.  Now Sarah Jessica is in a show called Divorce.  It’s (obviously) about a couple who have gotten divorced and all the obstacles they encounter in the process.  To me, she’ll always be Carrie Bradshaw.  But that’s good that she keeps on trucking with her acting career.

And check out her Instagram:  @sarahjessicaparker

Divorce show

And last but not least Charlotte (played by Kristin Davis):  Charlotte was the hopeless romantic in the show.  She was the polar opposite of Samantha.  Her first husband, Trey, was a total disappointment unfortunately.  Her second husband, Harry, treated her like the princess she was.  Now Kristin is doing a wonderful deed by trying to prevent the poaching of the endangered species the elephant.  She’s a huge animal rights activist, and is taking a break from acting to pursue her love of animals.

And check out her Instagram:  @iamkristindavis

elephant

Thoughts on Alex Winter’s Deep Web (2015)


“Deep Web” is a documentary from 2015 created and directed by Alex Winter. The documentary debuted on March 15, 2015 at SXSW and was featured on the EPIX cable network. The film goes into great detail and tells the unbiased story of the Silk Road, and the trial of its alleged creator and admin, Ross Ulbricht AKA Dread Pirate Roberts (DPR). Winter’s goal with the film was not to take sides, but to explain what the Silk Road was – a political community and movement of like-minded individuals. He also felt that law enforcement created a completely untruthful narrative of the entire case, and it needed some explaining. I discovered this documentary after Alex Winter was featured on the Joe Rogan Experience podcast, and was immediately fascinated by the story he was trying to tell. Here’s the trailer.

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We’re All Just Flying Monkeys in Space

Winter featured in a few famous films from the late 80s and early 90s, such as Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure (1989), BT’s Bogus Journey (1991), The Lost Boys (1987), and Freaked (1993). He’s been interested in the internet and tech world for his whole life. He created another internet-related documentary, Downloaded, released at SXSW in 2012He also gave a very interesting TED talk on how the Dark Net is key to our privacyAnd here he is talking about Ross.

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Alex Winter

Deep Web is the impartial, unbiased account of the Silk Road deep web marketplace, and the trial of its alleged creator, Ross Ulbricht or DPR. For what its worth, the case of Ross is an account of the government having it’s head in the sand and trying to shove our heads in also. The Silk Road was created in 2011 by a group of like-minded individuals with various libertarian and anarchist political beliefs. It combined the use of TOR (anonymous browser) and bitcoin (anonymous currency) to create a completely anonymous black market. Any goods can be exchanged on the site, but it was mainly used to exchange drugs.  Counterfeit currency, stolen goods, and other things that would hurt people were not allowed to be listed for sale on the site. The overall philosophy behind the site was to create a new relationship between the government and the people, where the government can’t control what the people buy and sell. Another minor philosophy the group shared was putting an end to the drug war.

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Screenshot

DPR was the screen name of the main admin and creator of the site. For those not familiar with this name, it’s from “The Princess Bride” novel and film. It’s a character whose name – Dread Pirate Roberts – is passed down to a new person periodically. This little tidbit is important to the names as it applies to The Silk Road. For example, DPR did an interview with Andy Greenberg. In the interview, DPR says that he did not create the Silk Road, his predecessor did, and he took over the screen name at some point.

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DPR in The Princess Bride

Almost immediately after the site was launched, it was infiltrated by undercover law enforcement who participated in the drug deals. Law enforcement also had informants working for them on the site. The investigation caught speed with an undercover officer named “nob”. Nob started contacting DPR regarding large-scale drug deals, and if he could be connected with a buyer of weight. DPR connected nob with a user named “chronic pain” who bought from nob, the federal agent, and gave his home address as the shipping address.

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Needless to say, chronicpain was arrested, which freaked out DPR. Then DPR told nob they needed to have chronicpain beaten up, which eventually changed to he should be executed. A photo of chronicpain’s bloody was sent to DPR as proof the deed was done. This was one of six total alleged murder for hire schemes. Of note is that two of the victims’ names in these schemes were found to be fictitious.

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Good Old Fashioned Molly

Christopher Tarbell of the FBI eventually located the Silk Road’s server in data centers in Iceland and Germany. It’s still a mystery how Tarbell located these servers legally. At 51:40 in the film, a summary of the explanation given by Tarbell on how he accessed the server is given. This expert calls Tarbell’s story “a heaping pile of bovine excrement”. This explanation is actually contradictory to what was given by the FBI. Regardless, both Tarbell’s and the FBI’s explanations don’t make sense. Therefore, it was most likely an illegal hack. Which, if true, means Ross’ 4th amendment rights were violated.

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Eventually, in October 2013, Ross Ulbricht was arrested in San Francisco at the Glen Park library. He was actually logged in to the DPR account on the Silk Road and was unable to encrypt his laptop before he was arrested. They found a journal documenting Ross’ activities in creating the Silk Road, as well as millions (around 3.6 million worth) in bitcoin. Recall three paragraphs above, the Andy Greenberg interview. There was at least two people who have used the DPR screen name. Even though we know about this interview, to the casual observer, it would appear Ross was caught with his pants down. Since this arrest, Ross has been held in prison, he was not allowed bail due to the violent nature of his murder-for-hire charges. Even with Ross in jail, a new “Silk Road 2.0” popped up, ran by a new DPR.

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At 59:55 we get a powerful opinion from ex Baltimore cop Neill Franklin, current director of the organization Law Enforcement Against Prohibition. Franklin discusses his memories of violence against families due to drugs, specifically recalling the murder of an entire family of seven by one drug dealer. He says, “If Baltimore moved from street corners to online services, do you know how many fewer shootings we would have every year, which equates to fewer homicides?” He goes further by pointing out that, by using the internet, buyers are removed from the dangerous situations that arises from being around drug dealers. Another interesting fact he brought up is the multi-billion dollar drug testing industry.

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I also found the interview with Amir Taaki to be very interesting. Taaki was involved with the creation of Bitcoin. He states that the next step is to make decentralized drug markets, a la torrenting. This way, the government can never bring down the whole thing. The weak point of the Silk Road was there was a central server, and there was a main admin and creator.

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Amir Taaki

By the time of Ross’ trial, all the violent charges were dropped from his indictment. Regardless, the public and jury were still tainted. The simple fact that there were violent charges against him at one point was a smear against Ross’ image. It’s hard to believe someone with a quote on their LinkedIn profile such as:

“Now, my goals have shifted. I want to use economic theory as a means to abolish the use of coercion and aggression amongst mankind…To that end, I am creating and economic simulation to give people a first-hand experience of what it would be like to live in a world without the systemic use of force.”

could have a violent bone in his body. He had his trial in early 2015. It was a sham to say the least. Considering the very technical nature of the case, expert witnesses were not allowed to be called by the defense. The judge said the case did not require expert knowledge. Also, remember “nob”, the undercover drug seller who contacted DPR about selling weight? He was found to be stealing millions in bitcoins from people on the Silk Road. This little tidbit, that the law enforcement officer responsible for the original break in the case was now being investigated for corruption, was also not admitted into the trial. He was sentenced to life without parole. He essentially wasn’t able to defend himself, and is appealing.

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Ross Ulbricht

Luckily, as of the time of this documentary in March 2015, Ross has avoided violence while in prison. This recent update on his appeal shows his defense is focusing on corrupt law enforcement officers. The case of Ross Ulbricht might be a textbook example of obstruction of justice on the part of law enforcement. Please do what you can to support Ross in his fight against false charges.

“I’ll never give up hope of being free again.” – Ross Ulbricht

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Free Ross

That’s all I have for today. Thanks for reading. Check out Deep Web by Alex Winter. And FREE ROSS ULBRICHT!

‘A Fistful of Dollars’ (1964) Top 5 Scenes


*SPOILERS*

In the past 5 years, I’ve become a relatively big fan of the comedian Joey Diaz. At least once a month, he talks about “A Fistful of Dollars” (AFD) and the “Dollars” trilogy. AFD is the first installment of this trilogy which also included “For a Few Dollars More” and “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”. He has nothing but good words to say about the film. It’s clearly one of the greatest films ever created, in his opinion. So I finally decided to bite the bullet and watch it for myself. I was definitely not let down by the experience. In fact, I found the film very inspiring.

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Here’s Who You Have To Thank For This Post

On that note, today I’m going to recap what I thought were the top 5 scenes of AFD. AFD was released in 1964 in Italy and in 1967 in the States. Yes – even at over 50 years old (52 to be exact), it still holds up today. It even has one of the highest scores on Rotten Tomatoes, 98%. It was Clint Eastwood’s first leading role as “Joe”, or more famously, “the Man with No Name”.

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No Name Required

The film was directed by Sergio Leone, the famous director of 60’s era Spaghetti Western films. As a matter of fact, Leone is considered the “creator” of the entire Spaghetti Western genre. I think the genre is called “SPAGHETTI” Western because they were made in Italy, and that’s from where the world got spaghetti. Furthermore, AFD is treated as the film that established the genre. It is set in San Miguel, Mexico in the late 19th century.

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No One Fucks With the Leone

Sergio Leone also happens to be Quentin Tarantino’s favorite director. In addition, Tarantino’s favorite film is “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”, also directed by Leone, and the final member of the “Dollars” trilogy. You can definitely see the Spaghetti Western influence in pretty much all of Tarantino’s films. However, the influence is most apparent in “Django Unchained” (2012) and “The Hateful Eight” (2015). But I digress; let’s start out by looking at the #5 scene from AFD, as decided by me, Jules Didlio.

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The Spaghetti Western Starter Pack

5). At 5:30 “Joe” (Clint Eastwood) rides into town (San Miguel). One of the first things he passes is a noose hanging from a tree. Next, a man crosses paths with Joe. Joe turns around to see there’s a sign on the man’s back that says “adios amigo”. This scene sets the tone for the rest of the movie. He definitely isn’t riding into small town, suburban, peaceful America. He’s entering the violent, lawless, ruthless Mexico of the 19th century.

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Welcome to San Miguel. Population: Declining

#4). At 58:05 Joe is shown shooting the groin of a suit of armor, I found some humor in this scene. My first thought upon watching this was the multiple mentions throughout the film of aiming for people’s hearts when shooting. And also the literal shooting of people’s hearts throughout the film.

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Someone Get The Man A Black And Mild

Before I could even finish my thought, as Joe is walking towards the armor, Ramón Rojo shoots the heart-area of the armor. The man actually forms a heart with his bullets in the armor. This scene contains my favorite verbal exchange of the whole film:

Ramón declares, “When you want to kill a man, you must shoot for his heart, and the Winchester is the best weapon”. Joe replies, “That’s very nice, but I’ll stick with my .45.”. Ramón answers, “When a man with a .45 meets a man with a rifle, the man with the pistol will be a dead man.” **Spoiler alert**, this is a HUGE foreshadowing of the end of the movie.

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Say Hello To My Little Winchester

#3). At 25:42 Joe is watching from a safe distance as a massacre of the Mexican Army is occurring. Ramón of the Rojo family is doing the killing. This is just a cool, action packed scene. Reminds me of the “Say Hello To My Little Friend” scene from Scarface. This is exactly what comes to mind when I think of what should happen in western movies. This scene is significant to the storyline for a couple of reasons. One is it shows that, even though San Miguel is in the country of Mexico, the Mexican government has very little control over the people of this particular town, and the 2 sparring families are the real authority in the area. It also shows that Joe doesn’t have to answer to anyone, because the “legitimate” government has no authority.

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The Real Say Hello To My Little Friend

#2). At 1:02:08 Joe is shown shooting up a room full of men. He walks in and says “Hello!” This way they can look the man in the eye who has come to take their souls. They’re all gone in less than 5 seconds. After shooting, Joe starts ransacking the room, and while he’s not paying attention, one of the men starts to move. Marisol warns him of the movement. He quickly throws the machete into the man’s chest and solves that small issue.

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Beauty!

#1). Our winner! At 42:00 Joe is shown shooting at a man’s feet who is guarding a door, “the bullet dance”. Immediately I thought of the scene in Goodfellas with Spider (Michael Imperioli) doing the bullet dance while Tommy (Joe Pesci) is shooting at his feet – eventually shooting one of those feet. Which is also alluded to in The Sopranos when Christopher (Imperioli, again) shoots at the feet of a bakery worker, causing him to do the “bullet dance”, eventually shooting one of his feet. Is it a coincidence that the “bullet dance” was featured in Italian Spaghetti Westerns, and also mob movies and shows that came after it? All I can do is point out that this type of scene appears in both genres.

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Xplosive!

And that’s all folks. Remember this list is MY opinion. And I’m not a film expert. So I’m sure there will be some people out there who disagree with me. I had a handful (or Fistful) of runners-up and stressed out mucho over this list. So please give me your opinions and also your opinions about my opinions.

And check out my Go Fund Me and please consider contributing or sharing the page!

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He Was Sore The Next Day