An early snow on one Dorchester street

Romsey Street with fake snow

Seems Marky Mark is back in his old hood, doing a movie in which he really stretches his dramatic wings and plays a gritty gun-toting tough guy with a Boston accent. One of the scenes in the Netflix-sponsored version of a "Spenser: For Hire" story (of course) called for snow. Kaw3589 reports the recreation of winter on Jones Hill this morning was "pretty damn spot on" - look at those space savers and the half-assed shoveling job for that half inch of snow.

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It's actually the

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It's actually the intersection of Pleasant St, Savin Hill Ave and Sawyer Ave... also Jones Hill not Savin Hill.

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They forgot

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to remove the leaves from the trees

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Huh?

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TV and the movies taught me that there's palm trees and a majestic view of the Sierra Nevada or San Bernardino mountains in the background of just about every scene set in winter on the East Coast.

I've been looking for them ever since. I've been to every state on the East Coast in my quest. I've even been to Los Angeles a few times so as to get a good look for myself...for to better identify them when I do found them back here.

Once, on the Virginia/West Virginia border, I thought I had it. There were beautiful mountains, folks with thick Appalachian accents (just like in the movies, but not quite like in the movies) and a big radio telescope just like in the movies (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Arrival_(1996_film)). But alas...it was the Appalachians, not the Sierras, and the telescope was Green Bank, which the internet informs me is, in fact, located in West Virginia.

My search continues.

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Little House On The Prairie

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DO NOT JUDGE

I bought the blueray box set of Little House a few months ago so I watch it from time to time. The cinematography really was amazing for that show. Even more amazing, restored and in HD.

I always laff because its suppose to be set on a prairie.. you know flat and maybe some hills. But in movie magic, LOTP was shot at Big Sky Ranch in the Simi Valley (outside LA). Not to sure the prairie had snow capped mountains during the summer :-) And of course, I won't talk about the "blizzard" episodes where I've seen better snow squals here in April than on that show.

But alas.. Movie magic. The cinematography just takes over with some beautiful shots.

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It is funny

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The older you get and the more "life experience" you have, the more critical you get of what's presented to you on the screen because as you live more, the chances go up that you've actually seen or done the thing being pawned off on you in real life and you're more likely to see the flaws and the inconsistencies in the artifice.

At the same time, you're more likely to appreciate the amount of hard work that went into getting details right, or even the work that went into papering over the details that you have to get wrong because you're shooting a movie with real people in a real place with real constraints on time, budget, location access, safety, weather, and all the rest.

A while ago, the wife and I rented Captain Phillips. That's the one where Tom Hanks plays the grizzled old sea captain kidnapped by Somali pirates. The movie was OK, the cinematography was good, his accent was terrible, but that's not what I remember about the film.

In the opening scene, Tom Hanks is being driven to the airport by his wife. The airport is supposed to be Logan or Hanscom Field or something that doesn't look like any airport I've been to around here, but what I keyed in on was the background scenes while they're driving. I remember them "driving" under and overpass and I yelled out: "I'd recognize those rusted bridges and potholes everywhere!" They'd filmed Route 128 in the Burlington/Lexington stretch some time in 2011 or 2012 (the film came out in 2013 I think) before the Route 2 overpass was replaced and before the highway was resurfaced after having deteriorated so badly that the paint around the lane markings caused the asphalt to corrode away. It was pretty bad for a full year or two and I drove that road almost every day, and someone actually went out and filmed it for an effects shot background in a scene that lasted less than a minute.

That was something.

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yes

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This exactly.

with LOTP, i'm just amazed at the sets and period clothes they wear. Sure the men had 1970s perm'd hair. But long, uncut hair was in style for country folks as shakes and haircuts were not done often. But Michael Landon's hair is clearly a 1970s perm untouched.

But the sets are amazing, so period. The extras on the DVDs state that the props department should have won awards for it set design and placement. (along with how Michael Landon required having "the best" production crew)

And yeah there are irregularities in the show outside of sets and location shots. Some historical information is incorrect.. such as usage of the telephone in Walnut Grove in 1884 (wide use of the telephone in the west didn't happen until the 1890s) or the episode where someone has a record player. That style of record player (a disc player) didn't appear for another few years after the episode was set in.

Still.. excellent cinematography and Emmy winning acting. Dog the show all you want for its campiness, sugary sweet ... it was an excellent show that was very well written and produced, with a star studded cast.

And it shows.. 35 years later after it went off the air, it's still being aired on TV, and still has a very loyal fan base.

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Just sayin'

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Good posts (but I am starting to judge, just a little.)

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don't worry

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Coworkers already give me a lot of crap when I say

"Well last night I watched yet another gripping episode of Little House On The Prairie..."

:-) I've just been a fan since I was a kid. I've read all the original books, the adult versions of the books, the Pioneer Book that came out. I own all three sets of DVDs (there were three versions came out).

I also read a ton about the show and I've met so many cast members (Alison Arngrim aka "Nellie" is a riot in person.. go see her show when it's around)

And some day I have a dream to rent a Winnebago and drive to all the historic sites along US 16 - Laura Ingalls Wilder Highway.. from Big Woods to Walnut Grove to DeSmet, SD.

What can I say, I'm a fan.

(also don't ever ask me about this stuff... I can go on and on about her and the show)

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all the historic sites along

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all the historic sites along US 16 - Laura Ingalls Wilder Highway.. from Big Woods to Walnut Grove to DeSmet, SD.

No! You simply must do ALL sites in actual order or it doesn't count!!! 8-)

Wisconsin --> Kansas -> Wisconsin -> Minnesota -> Iowa -> Minnesota -> South Dakota -> Florida -> South Dakota -> Missouri

...and NY for his childhood.

Loved the books.
The TV show, while wholesome in theme, was drivel. Couldn't stand it as a kid - too many episodes were sitcom tropes of "protagonist kid does something stupid", to the extent that they also employed the "bring in young doppelgangers when the original child stars age out of little/stupid/cute" trope.
My final write-off moment before the "dynamite" finale was some late-in-the-run episode where Laura and Almanzo have been having some huge fight, resolve the fight in front of the house after coming home some dark stormy evening, and (roll credits) head inside for some wilder making-up - leaving the horses out front, tied to the hitching post, in a thunderstorm!!!

I was never really bothered by the terrain of the TV location, though it wasn't quite convincing "prairie". After all, the TV Walnut Grove had to be a composite of the real Walnut Grove & DeSmet (and even a little bit of Kansas).
The canyons of Riverside, Iowa in the JJ Abrams Star Trek reboot were much more egregious.

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For the ultimate LIW deep dive...

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Read either Prarie Fires by Caroline Fraser or the Annotated Pioneer Girl manuscript edited by Pamela Hill. Fascinating background about LIW. I'm a huge Little House fan, and Parairie Fires was really interesting. (Michael Landon gets a few paragraphs that are pretty funny, and not at all flattering!!)

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Liberties With Locations

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What kills me is how movies take liberties with locations. In "The Departed" it was particularly obvious. For example, they would show Jack Nicholson standing and talking in front of the Moakley Courthouse. But when they show the scene from behind Jack Nicholson so you see what he is facing, it is not anything that is actually across from the courthouse. It's Dorchester or someplace. This is very disorienting to a native Bostonian like me. When did they move Dorchester to the Moakley Courthouse?

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I get nitpicky on effects shots

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Not so much the actual locations. Like when Martin Sheen was getting on the Red Line before his character was killed off, the fact that they photoshopped him onto the platform was what was disorienting to me.

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Stonados

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I highly recommend the brilliantly awful movie "Stonados" which features the University of Boston stadium (Go, Lions!) which is right on Boston Harbor. And much of the movie was shot in British Columbiam so the street scenes are so neat and clean.

Really...you should watch it. Great fun.

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The what?

The University of Boston? You mean BU, but on the harbor? That's where UMass Boston is. Or is that the Boston Harbor that's in British Columbiam?

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nope

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It's the Univeristy of Boston. The movie is ridiculous, I assure you :)

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Movie magic.....

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I was at Universal Studio shortly after Apollo 13 was filmed. They had a billboard on a hill that was nothing but blue sky and clouds. They mentioned they dropped a small model capsule with parachutes to film the splashdown at the end. If the camera zoomed out the LA skyline would be in the background. I've seen it 100 times and it still looks pretty real to me.

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Leverage

AAAAAARRRRRRGGGGGGHHHHHHH!

Liberally switching off between Boston and Portland, it drove me up a tree!

Oh look - they just drove past Pioneer Courthouse Square ... now Faneuil Hall and ... the view from the old hospital in Stoneham where my son is born? But they exit the hospital area via the giant twinkie?

MAKE IT STOP!!!

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It ain't a naweastuh, ked

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Just a lousy early winter snow stawm in a year without a perfect stawm!

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They didn't forget the leaves.

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The trees won't be in the shot. They'll only be shooting the dressed (snowy) areas.

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This is Sawyer Ave at

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This is Sawyer Ave at Pleasant St on Jones Hill.

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Please don't tell me

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that Mahky Mahk is playing Spenser.

Now, if he just has a part in the movie, there are plenty of goons in Parker's books that he could do.

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Ugh.

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Vinnie Morris, I could see. But Spenser??

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Isn't that,,,

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Isn't that right near where Mr. Mark assaulted that guy and put out his eye?

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its ok, he asked god for

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its ok, he asked god for forgiveness during one of his early morning prayer sessions, so we can forget that he is a racist troll.

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He didn't put his eye out

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Victim is on record saying he had already lost the eye. I think in the Vietnam war.

Marky Mark did plenty of scummy shit as a kid. ( And as an adult trying to get special treatment and expungement for convictions.)

But let's be sure we don't hang anything he didn't actually do on him. Fair's fair.

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Oh, I see

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So he attacked a guy with one eye for racist reasons.

So very brave.

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Can't believe I have to clarify this

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Wahlburg was a scumbag back in the day. Did a lot of scummy things lacking any bravery or decency.

This incident is one of them. He attacked the guy. He didn't put his eye out. Let's call him out on the attack and not the maiming, since he did't maim him, OK?

From the record:

WAHLBURG COWARD AND SCUMBAG BACK IN THE DAY. NOT BRAVE. HE ATTACKED AND BUT DID NOT MAIM VICTIM.

I'M NOT DEFENDING HIM IN ANY WAY

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Everyone has a past

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I don't think there's anyone out there who would want to be judged by their actions as a teenager...especially if you grew up in the city.

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Maybe. But he is a changed

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Maybe. But he is a changed person. People do change. I understand the envy however, not everyone comes from Dot to go on to be a Hollywood powerhouse and make 60 mil a year. Doing something stupid as a teen shouldn't mark a person as bad their whole life should it? Otherwise, all the teen murderers up for parole right now should just stay locked up. Amirite?

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Doing something stupid as a teen

I would say that stealing a car, or crashing one while drunk without casualties is "doing something stupid as a teen".

Assaulting a bunch of black school kids, getting probation, and then violently attempting to murder a person BECAUSE OF HIS RACE in a way that made it difficult for him to function? Then doing short time and NEVER paying a cent of restitution?

THAT IS NOT "DOING SOMETHING STUPID AS A TEEN"!

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Depends where you grew up

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When did he attempt to murder someone because of their race?

Dude already said he lost his eye years before the incident.

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Marky Mark? No

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Is MM playing Spenser? If you've read the books, he's the *last* actor to fit that role. What a disappointment.

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They Did A Good Job

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It took about 15 seconds for it to click why there were 5 guys with walkie-talkies looking at a snow bank. (Oh yeah - It's October!) You can't see it in the pic, but the triple deckers on the right had light patches of 'snow' stuck to the siding like it had been a recent storm.

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The corner of Sawyer Ave,

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The corner of Sawyer Ave, about to cross Pleasant St, where Sawyer Ave becomes Savin Hill Ave. The brick buildings 1st floor is Pleasant Market known to locals as Deb And George's.
My house was in the top left corner of the picture, just out of the shot at 10 Savin Hill Ave.
So, I guess my old house will be in the movie...

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The film crew trucks for this

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The film crew trucks for this Spenser project have been on Stoughton St all week.

Why couldn't we have Avery Brooks play Spenser?

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I'd watch that movie

Unlike the one being made. The only times I watch anything with Wahlburg in it is if he's buried with multiple talented actors.

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Brooks is too old now

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Loved him on the show back in the day though. Don't have high hopes for this version but I doubt it would be made with out Walhberg and his team attached.

At least it's employing people in Boston.

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This is Sawyer Ave which

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This is Sawyer Ave which Peverell Street runs into--street that Mark Wahlberg lived on back in his punk days.

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'Punk' as in 'Douchebag'

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Don't slime the proud history of Boston punk by associating it in any way with Mark Wahlberg.

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God Bless "Michael Landon" born Eugene Maurice Orowitz

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I enjoyed Eugene Maurice Orowitz as an actor on Little House on the Prairie, working under stage name "Michael Landon." Many people believed that was his name.

Locally two great ch. 5 men, "Chet Curtis" born Chester Kukiewicz and "Harvey Leonard" born Harvey Leibowitz felt the need to adopt stage names. Glad to see public figures can now use their real name.

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doing a movie in which he

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doing a movie in which he really stretches his dramatic wings and plays a gritty gun-toting tough guy with a Boston accent.

Damn, now marky mark's going to come for you.

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