The first edition of Complete Idiot's Guide to Bridge
by H. Anthony Medley was the fastest
selling beginning bridge book, going through more than 10 printings.
Second Edition includes some modern advanced bidding systems and
conventions, like Two over One, a system used by many modern
tournament players, Roman Key Card Blackwood, New Minor
Forcing, Reverse Drury, Forcing No Trump, and others.
Also included is a detailed Guide to
Bidsand Responses, along with the most detailed, 12-page
Glossary ever published, as well as examples to make learning the game
even easier. Click book to order.
Crazy Heart (10/10)
by Tony Medley
Run time 111 minutes.
Not for children.
This is a film that almost didn’t get distributed.
Fox Searchlight picked it up and took a chance and we should all be
thankful that they did because it is without any doubt one of the best
films of the year.
Written and directed by Scott Cooper (in his debut)
from a novel by Thomas Cobb, 57-year-old Bad Blake (Jeff Bridges) still
lives his life out on the road, playing long-ago #1 hits in third-rate
beer joints and bowling alleys to aging crowds as drunk as he is, while
his fleeting fame slides into obscurity.
One gig blurs into the next until one night in
Santa Fe when Bad meets local journalist Jean
Craddock (Maggie Gyllenhaal), a single mom, and falls for her. They
continue winding up in each other’s arms, a result I didn’t buy for one
second. She’s young and beautiful; he’s old, smelly, dirty, and dirt
poor. He’s got nothing that would attract an attractive young woman with
Finally he gets a break, to open a big concert for
his young protégé, Tommy Sweet (an uncredited Colin Farrell), who
learned everything he knows from Bad. But Tommy, unlike Bad, managed to
become rich and famous from it.
Although Jean’s feelings for Bad didn’t pass the
smell test, I could overlook that because the acting, music, and
cinematography mesmerized me. All the time I was watching Bad, I never
thought I was watching Jeff Bridges. I actually kept thinking of Kris
Kristofferson, whom Bridges seemed to be channeling. Bridges gives a
performance for the ages here. In fact, the story is basically
irrelevant to the pleasure of this movie. This is a film to just sit
back and enjoy the music and outstanding acting.
The original music by Stephen Bruton, who passed
away on May 11, 2009, and T-Bone
Burnett (who also has a producing credit) is sensational. Bridges does
all his own singing and, for my money, he could go on tour. Unlike the
faux singing that appears in director Rob Marshall’s “musicals”
(“Chicago” and “Nine,” in which Marshall creates what looks like music
with quick cuts from non-musicians faking it; most actors can sing one
or two bars and hit all the notes, given enough takes, as exemplified by
Joaquin Phoenix in 2005’s “Walk the Line”), Bridges sings songs all the
way through; he’s the real thing.
Farrell sings one song and one duet with Bridges.
Farrell’s voice and singing talent live up to the quality of his acting,
which is generally good, even when he takes a terrible role like he did
in one of Oliver Stone’s many dogs “Alexander” (2004).
Unlike “Alexander” and Stone, however, “Crazy
Heart,” is one terrific movie, and, if this movie is any indication,
Scott Cooper is a talented director.