There are things on Netflix that you would hardly even know were there.
One of the best ways of catching a glimpse of some of this ‘less found' stuff is to look at the recommendations at the bottom of the screen when you select something or (and this is a good one) try searching for something that you know for sure isn’t on there and see what alternatives Netflix throws up for you.
That’s how I found the film ‘Thunderbolt and Lightfoot’ the other night. God knows what I was looking for, at the time, it could have been anything. I would have never known it was there if my search had not been in vain.
Now, wait, wait a minute, come back, sit down… I’m not actually recommending ‘Thunderbolt and Lightfoot’ to you as a viewing experience. I’m saying it’s there and I’m saying I found it and I watched it… again. And, once again, no, I’m not recommending it. I don’t think I can comfortably send you over to Netlfix to watch it. I’d be afraid you might come back and start giving out to me and I can’t be doing with that just now.
So… not a recommendation. Got that? Good.
Now that we’re clear on that, I can say to you that I kind-of love ‘Thunderbolt and Lightfoot’ and I have done for the longest time. It’s one of those films from my childhood/teenage years that made a mark on me that never quite went away. And, just in case that last sentence stops you in your tracks, just in case you’re wondering how a film with a huge ‘X’ certificate on the poster can evoke childhood memories, let me explain once more about that slightly odd ‘grown up movie’ aspect of my formative years.
I blame Bruce Lee, of course. All of Bruce Lee’s films were ‘Over 18’s’ but we had to get in to see our hero so we developed resources and guile and skills and, most importantly, a ‘brass neck’ about getting in flicks that were patently too old for us to see. As a result, it became the norm to see grown up movies when we were twelve or thirteen. It didn’t do me any harm (twitch) and it definitely gave me a head start on my love of movies which, otherwise, might have faded away if my diet had been restricted to stuff like Disney and ‘Carry On’s.
‘Thunderbolt and Lightfoot’ was one such grown up movie. I remember a Friday night in the Savoy. I don’t think it was the first time it played there. It was a popular show and it came back for a couple of nights as a double feature from time to time. I loved it because it was a ‘Road Movie’ and it was funny and naughty and adult and violent and so many of the things I knew I shouldn’t really be seeing. Watching it again, the other night, I was struck by the glorious Panavision-lensed countryside and the gentle warmth of the developing relationship between the two main characters. It has a certain pedigree too, with Michael Cimino as Director and Screenwriter. (I’m still not recommending it). What starts out as quirky and funny and hugely male-centric becomes something much more gently ironic and ultimately tragic. (Maybe you should watch it.)
And, hey, this isn’t even meant to be a movie review blog post. Look back at the title. Yup, it’s meant to be about hair. I haven’t even mentioned hair yet… well, I just did but I’m nearly at the end now, for pity’s sake.
Here we go now though, hair.
I’m in lockdown, just like everybody else, and so I can’t get my hair cut. When I suggested I might take my beard trimmer to my head, some fine day, my friend, who does that with his hair, looked at me for the twat that I often am and said, “you won’t ever do that.” He’s probably right, it’s just going to grow and grow, isn’t it?
And here’s the thing. Looking at Clint Eastwood in ‘Thunderbolt and Lightfoot’ the other night, the thought popped clearly into my head. That’s what my hair is going to do, now that I can't cut it. It’s going to turn into Clint Eastwood’s hair.
I’ve always got the brushed-back ‘widow’s peak’ action that my Dad left me but usually it’s cut short enough not to matter. Not anymore, baby. I reckon I’m going to hit ‘peak’ Eastwood within a month or so and then all the wrongdoers and ne’er-do-wells of my little town had better just watch the hell out. (“Go ahead, Pat, make my day.”) I even got my old Ray-ban sunglasses out and washed them with Fairy Liquid. They're not much practical use to me, 'cos they're not prescription but, man, they look the part.
Have you spotted it yet? The basic misconception that pervades the latter half of this post.
Yup, somewhere deep in my head, I don’t just think I’m going to have Clint Eastwood hair, I actually think I’m going to become Clint Eastwood.
But, deep down, I know. I know…
I’m not going to become Clint Eastwood. I’m a middle aged paunchy not-too-statuesque dude and Clint is lean and mean and seven-and-a-half foot bloody tall. Hell, I’m not even going to have Clint Eastwood hair. It’s just going to become an unruly clusterfuck up there on the top of my head and fall down in bangs on my nose. To hell with it. Maybe I actually will beard-trim it all off after all.
(You won’t, Ken.)
You’re right, I won’t.
Maybe I’ll just go and see what else I can find down the back of Netflix. Maybe I’ll unearth a more achievable hair-aspiration something in there.
Kojak reruns, maybe…