The Gray Fox Blog: – “Facebook, a French film, and a Reemerging Box Office”

   I have not written a new installment to The Gray Fox Blog in a while, and so, I have decided to remedy that. We’ve begun our ascent into the month of April, a month I foresee flying by at the blink of an eye, but being deceptively important. Today, my morning has been grim – after having adopted a new feline friend into my life, so soon, I already bid it adieu.

   Ashen, Toph, Ninja, and Ellie are my cats, and, for any of their hang-ups, that does not sway how much I care for them. They have kept me company at times when I dearly needed it. A couple days ago, I welcome a fifth cat, a small orange cat who my wife and I named Ajax. She was calm and pretty, and felt behaved.

   She’d frequented my older brother’s neighborhood and was clearly domesticated, a cat that’d either gotten out or been ditched, wandering the street. As nighttime came, we deduced she was pregnant, a fact highlighted by her sleepy, lethargic behavior. No matter, we’d keep an eye on it. If any complications arose, we’d take her to the veterinarian. Only a short time later, her water broke. Odd. She was so small and was certainly not that likely to be that far along, and yet, we did what we could. We kept an eye on her, bought her special food, and kept her isolated from the rest of the cats. Keep in mind, this was only over the course of a few hours. Then, after midnight, she passed.

   This morning, I bury Ajax, and write to you.

Building the Brand.

   I wanted to have more to say about Dreamers Hallow this week. I have been corresponding back in forth with a writer named Bradley Walker who I think will be a major asset to the project, as well as some other activities I hope to work on. I have read a couple of his stories I intend to include in the anthology, but nothing has been set in stone yet.

   On a personal level, I have been writing a story called Parlor Tricks, a short story with elements of the slasher genre, a subgenre I have coveted but rarely dabbled in on an original level. I am about 8,000 words into it, and imagine it will land someplace in the 10 – 12,000 word threshold by the end. I am doing edits of what’s already written in tandem to the last half, and am hopeful to have it available on Amazon sometime in April or May. Time flies though.

   Likewise, Scott Moore has a short story we hope to make available on Amazon shortly as well.

   In March, I kickstarted an Ad campaign on Facebook for Readers Digested, meant as a way to dabble more in the platform. Predominantly, most of my social-networking is conducted on Twitter and Reddit respectively, and yet, most of our viewership comes from Facebook. Thus, it made sense that I might try to entertain it more often. The campaign was brief, a $40 investment, but I am happy with the result. We’re only just shy of 100 followers on Facebook, a far cry from Twitter, etc., but it is a start. I am hoping, too, that it will lead to a more active following as well.

   March was, by far, our highest viewed month, beating out the previous record holder (which was January of this year).

Movies.

   I reviewed Child’s Play since the last time I wrote on The Gray Fox Blog, a beloved film from my collection. I also reviewed a French horror film called Among the Living and an Italian film called Cannibal Holocaust. I have stayed the course on my efforts to write about foreign films as often as I can and I am happy with the outcomes of that. I may not always love the films, but I enjoy the discussion and expanding my interests and knowledge on a cultural and creative level.

   I also reviewed Godzilla vs. Kong, the blockbuster that has been making headlines allover. I did not offer it critical acclaim, which opened a can of worms, such as individuals bombarding me with hateful criticisms and attacks on my person. I’m alright with that though, don’t really care much these days. In general, if you’re willing to enter a sparring match with someone over a difference of opinion, or you’re willing to do the legwork to personally attack them for that, then you’re exactly the type of opinion that is moved to my recycle bin. I don’t mind disagreements. I like them, actually. I also don’t mind criticisms about the way I write my reviews on Readers Digested.

   Sometimes, maybe, I can come off a little “book report-y” in my approach, whereas, other times, maybe I meander or dither, it all depends and I don’t buckle when I’m called out, per se. I would like to think I’ve even improved over the years from criticisms I am given. What I wont do, however, is entertain personal attacks or vitriol hate speech because I didn’t like a certain film.

On the bright side, Godzilla vs. Kong is doing well at the box office, suggesting a light at the end of the tunnel for the setbacks cause by the Covid-19 pandemic. I believe there is a lot left to do, but I long for a time when we are able to see films released theatrically, in addition to more experimentation with the streaming distribution model. Hopefully, with Godzilla vs. Kong’s success, we’re able to see the tides turn in our favor.

The List.

   In earlier installments for “The List”, I have not really dabbled in the horror genre, directly, per se. For certain, seeing the man peek his head up in Parasite was the stuff of nightmares, but that’s, at best, horror adjacent. For today’s edition to The List., I decided I wanted to be more upfront and celebrative of the genre we all hold near and dear.

   Directed by Scott Derrickson, the supernatural horror film Sinister is one I thoroughly enjoyed when I first watched it, and one that has stayed with me, holding up each time I revisit it. There’re some aspects I would change, for certain, in-particular, I am still bothered by the awful jump scare / wink and nod moment at the end of the film, but, for the most parts, it is a film I hold in high regard. Bolstered by a strong performance from Ethan Hawke, very creepy visuals and sound work, I highly recommend it and hope the film and Mr. Boogie find more love in the years to come.

 

1.) The Departed(added on The Grey Fox #2)

2.) Parasite(added on The Grey Fox #1)

3.) Sinister

 

The End.

   I am offering myself a break, so to speak, on the expectations I have before it comes time for the next Gray Fox Blog. Per usual, I want to share my thoughts on some interest films and do as much as I can, but, other than that, I’m looking for a quieter April. Thanks for everyone that has supported the website and I’ll see you again shortly.

   Peace, love and chicken grease,

McConnaughay

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