Monday, July 14, 2008

The Long Hot Summer

Back when I was maybe ten I was sitting in front of the television set, flipping channels, when I came across a movie called “The Long Hot Summer.” Normally, I’d watch an “adult” film, i.e. one of the non-“Pink Panther” oeuvre, for about three seconds before changing the channel. But this time, I hesitated.

In fact, I ended up watching the whole movie, and loved it. I remember thinking, “Wow, I watched a whole adult movie.” I also remember thinking Paul Newman was hot. (And having just caught another glimpse of him in this movie, gratis of Netflix, I have to say I still think so.)

Recently, while digging up information on the various family-relevant locales in Louisiana, I discovered that the movie was filmed on location in Clinton, Louisiana, which happens to be where my mother owns some land she inherited from her stepfather, Jimmy. Jimmy inherited it on his mother’s side, I think. They were Lauves. And I believe they were French.

Clinton is apparently a legal center--lots of lawyers, a famous courthouse—and filmmakers like it. (More recently “The Dukes of Hazards” –retch—featured a scene shot there.) Paul and I have a fantasy about building a house on the land. But I’ve never seen it. We’ve been dying to get down and take a look. (My mother tells me I’m going to be sorely disappointed. We’ll see.)

So it was amusing to realize that A) I had seen it, though Paul Newman probably eclipsed the town’s beauty at the time and B) I can see it again, any time I feel like stoking up Netflix’s instant watch feature. (Love it.) This time, though, I may be mentally urging Paul Newman to get out of the way, so I can get a better look at the town square.

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