Musings & Thoughts for Monday, February 27, 2023, or: Weekend Update, Part III – Sunday Night Viewing

A screengrab from “How the Nazis Lost the War.”

In case you’re wondering, I did not watch The Fabelmans or any movies that I own on Blu-ray, DVD, or digital copy. Instead, I read for a while from my copy of Paul Duncan’s The Star Wars Archives: Episodes I-III, 1999-2005, which is the second volume in Duncan’s behind-the-scenes history of how George Lucas created the first six films of the Star Wars saga.

I have both volumes, and even though I’ve browsed through them just enough to review at least one volume, I have not sat down to read them from cover to cover. I’ve gotten into a routine in which I stay at my desk pretty much all day and don’t read, listen to music, or watch TV in the same way that I used to in Miami. Thus, where once it used to take me a short time – usually one to two weeks, depending on the author, genre, or heftiness of a volume – to read a book, it now takes me longer than that.  

I did not, of course, spend most of my time yesterday reading Duncan’s book about how the Star Wars prequel trilogy was made. I wrote yesterday’s blog post, and played Regiments for about an hour – I set the Skirmish up with a 40-minute time limit, but since (unlike in real life) players can pause the simulation at any time for any reason, be it game related or to get up and grab a snack, the session ran longer than 40 minutes even though I beat the Red Force before time ran out – and ate dinner (a slice of Pizza Hut’s Big New Yorker pizza that was left over from a delivery order I made on Friday night).

Freevee is a free-to-watch streaming service offered by Amazon. (C) 2022 Freevee/Amazon

I did, eventually, watch something so I could fall asleep: an episode of How the Nazis Lost the War, a six-part documentary made for Australian TV in 2021. Amazon’s Freevee streaming service is running it as part of its ad-supported lineup, and I’m a sucker for World War II documentaries, so after another night of indecision as to what to watch (movie-wise), I settled on it, even though I deplore how badly-timed the ads are on Freevee. (It’s sort of like what happens when you watch a long video on YouTube’s basic free-to-watch site; you get ads every once in a while, but since most of the content on YouTube is not written or edited in such a way as to allow commercials to play organically like they do on broadcast or cable TV, they cut into a scene where someone is talking in midsentence and roll over the content without pausing.

This. Is. So. Annoying,

I did get through most of the documentary – I still have one episode to go with How the Nazis Lost the War – without getting so irked at Freevee’s haphazard insertion of adverts, but I much prefer to watch documentaries on PBS, cable networks where they still know how to incorporate commercial breaks properly, or on home media. Henceforth, I will avoid Freevee unless I am truly desperate to watch something on nights when I can’t pick something from my own home media library.

I was still not sleepy when I decided to save the sixth episode of How the Nazis Lost the War for another time, so I grabbed my Star Trek: The Original Motion Picture 6-Movie Collection box set from its shelf and watched some of the behind-the-scenes stuff on the Star Trek: The Motion Picture – The Director’s Cut bonus disc.

I watched the entire first featurette – A Bold New Enterprise – in which Star Trek’s rebirth after a decade of post-cancellation syndication is discussed, starting with how Paramount sought to start a fourth TV network in the late 1970s with Star Trek: Phase II as its flagship show, and ending with the studio’s decision to cash in on the post-Star Wars boom of science fiction and re-invent Star Trek as a big budget feature film.

I then started watching the featurette devoted to the making of Star Trek: The Motion Picture, but it was already past 11 and I was sleepy, so I turned off my TV set and the Blu-ray player with my remote and went to bed. This time, unlike what happened on Saturday night, I slept well and woke up – a bit more rested – a little after 7 AM.

Aside from that, I don’t have much to tell, so I’ll close for now. Until next time, Dear Reader, stay safe and healthy, and I’ll catch you on the sunny side of things.    


Published by Alex Diaz-Granados

Alex Diaz-Granados (1963- ) began writing movie reviews as a staff writer and Entertainment Editor for his high school newspaper in the early 1980s and was the Diversions editor for Miami-Dade Community College, South Campus' student newspaper for one semester. Using his experiences in those publications, Alex has been raving and ranting about the movies online since 2003 at various web sites, including Amazon, Ciao and Epinions. In addition to writing reviews, Alex has written or co-written three films ("A Simple Ad," "Clown 345," and "Ronnie and the Pursuit of the Elusive Bliss") for actor-director Juan Carlos Hernandez. You can find his reviews and essays on his blogs, A Certain Point of View and A Certain Point of View, Too.

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