The Wire – Season 5

813-zd3nvtL._SL1316_ The Wire – Season 5 The final season or ‘all good things come to an end’.

Over the course of its first four seasons, The Wire turned its eye towards cops, criminals, addicts, blue-collar workers, politicians, teachers, and students.  In the show’s final season, The Wire examined itself.  Not literally, but creator David Simon used his past profession as a journalist at the Baltimore Sun to explore the tension between depicting Baltimore honestly while still creating a compelling, exquisitely crafted drama filled with interesting characters and rich conflicts.

The Sun is the new element, but it’s the first time a new element was introduced but it didn’t feature a connecting character from a previous season.  Valchek (Al Brown) and McNulty connected the docks in season two, Burrell (Frankie Faison) and Rawls (John Doman) connected the politics in season three, and Pryzbylewski (Jim True-Frost) connected the schools in season four.  The Sun operates independently until McNulty actively attempts to bring them into the investigation not as an organization that seeks the truth, but one that can be manipulated into selling the big lie.

Source: Matt Reviews THE WIRE – Season 5

OT: Ramón Bilbao Edición Limitada, 2012

Of the three wines I’ve recently tasted from this winery, this one is probably the most interesting within my parameters, i.e.: below the 10, or maximum 12 EUR price. An affordable wine of modern inspiration. See my previous pots Ramón Bilbao Crianza 2012 here; and Ramón Bilbao Reserva 2010 here.

  • 20151010_135006 Winery: Ramón Bilbao Vinos y Viñedos. Avda. Santo Domingo 34, 26220, Haro. La Rioja (España – Spain). The winery was founded in 1924; however, around 1896 Don Ramón Bilbao Muga had already sold their wines to a winery that was located on a street in Las Cuevas, Haro. In 1972, a few years after the death of the last descents of the Bilbao family, the winery was placed in the hands of the Lecanda family, founders of the legendary Vega Sicilia winery in Ribera del Duero, where they built new facilities, and thereby expanded their brand and focused on the production of crianza wines. In 1999 when the company Diego Zamora S.A., one of the most important groups of drinks in Spain, acquired Bodegas Ramón Bilbao, they began a process of modernisation and upgrading the facilities, which marked a new step and a big boost to the brand, achieving great recognition from the customers.
  • Phone: +34 941 310 295
  • Winemaker: Rodolfo Bastida
  • Website:
  • Brand: Ramón Bilbao Edición Limitada
  • DO: DOC Rioja
  • Type: Red Crianza wine made from a selection of 995 barrels from which 265,100 75-cl bottles and 13,030 150-cl magnum bottles were obtained. On the selection table in the winery, only the best bunches and the perfect grapes are chosen, that will be traditionally fermented  in wooden bats at controlled temperatures. The wine is aged for 14 months in new French and American oak barrels. The aging process is completed in the underground bottle cellar of the winery, where it is refined for another ten months before hitting the market. 
  • Vintage: 2012
  • Alcohol: 14%
  • Grape Variety: 100% Rioja Tempranillo
  • Vineyards: From 75 hectares of vineyards located in Rioja Alta, near the Ebro River.
  • Soil Type: The vineyards are planted on heterogeneous soils, shallow, well-drained, with occasional water shortages.
  • Bottle Size: 75.0 cl.
  • Price: Available at 9.89 €, at my local grocery shop.
  • My wine rating: 95/100 (A wine of distinction) NEW!
  • Film Notes: Spotlight (2015) directed by Tom McCarthy

    US – CA / 128 min / color /Anonymous Content, First Look Media, Participant Media, Rocklin/Faust Dir: Tom McCarthy Pro: Blye Pagon Faust, Steve Golin, Nicole Rocklin, and Michael Sugar Scr: Josh Singer, Tom McCarthy Cine: Masanobu Takayanagi Mus: Howard Shore  Cast: Mark Ruffalo, Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, John Slattery, Brian d’Arcy James, Stanley Tucci, Billy Crudup, Paul Guilfoyle, Jamey Sheridan, Len Cariou, Neal Huff, Michael Cyril Creighton  Summary Plot: A group of Boston Globe reporters uncovers a shocking cover-up that would rock the city and cause a crisis in one of the world’s oldest and most trusted institutions. Spotlight —which stars Michael Keaton, Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, Brian d’Arcy James and Stanley Tucci—tells the true story of the Globe’s tenacious ‘Spotlight’ team of reporters who spent a year investigating allegations of abuse within the Catholic Church, ultimately revealing decades of deception at the highest levels of Boston’s religious, legal and government establishment and touching off a wave of revelations around the world. Directed by Academy Award-nominee Tom McCarthy, Spotlight is a tense investigative drama that tells the true story behind the scandal that shook the world.  Release Date: 3 September 2015 (Venice International Film Festival); 6 November 2015 (United States); 29 January 2016 (Spain) IMDb Rating: 8.2


    ‘In Florida virtually everything is public,’ says the real Walter Robinson (Michael Keaton in the movie), implying that Marty Baron was not used to the more private way things were done up north ( Baron had the Spotlight team begin an investigation into Father John J. Geoghan, who had been allowed to keep his job after his abuse of young parishioners had been discovered and kept hushed for more than 30 years ( It turned out that Father Geoghan was just the tip of the iceberg. (Source: History Hollywood)

    Spotlight was shown in the Out of Competition section of the 72nd Venice International Film Festival. It was also shown at the Telluride Film Festival and the Special Presentations section of the 2015 Toronto International Film Festival. The film was released on November 6, 2015, by Open Road Films. It won numerous guilds and critics’ association awards, and was named one of the finest films of 2015 by various publications. Spotlight won the Academy Award for Best Picture along with Best Original Screenplay, from six nominations in total. (Source: Wikipedia)

    Very much in the ‘All the President’s Men’/ ‘Zodiac’ mold of slow-building, quietly gripping journalistic procedurals, this measured and meticulous ensemble drama sifts through a daunting pile of evidence to expose not just the Church’s horrific cycles of abuse and concealment, but also its uniquely privileged position in a society that failed its victims at myriad personal, spiritual and institutional levels. The result may be more sobering and scrupulous than it is cathartic or revelatory, but with its strong narrative drive and fine cast, Spotlight should receive more than a fair hearing with smarthouse audiences worldwide. (Source: Variety Film Review)

    Begoña and I have had the opportunity to watch Spotlight recently , a film that, without doubt,  provides some food for thought. In my view, it’s worth seeing.

    Official site

    The story behind the ‘Spotlight’ movie

    Film Review The Hollywood Reporter

    The Wire – Season 4

    71iIUHv7JwL._SY679_ The season kicks off with a bit of brilliant symbolism by having Marlo’s lieutenants Chris Partlow (Gbenga Akinnagbe) and Felicia “Snoop” Pearson (Felicia Pearson) continuing a killing spree, and hiding the bodies in the vacant buildings.  A ghost town may as well have dead residents. The lack of corpses allows Marlo to rise to power even though he only seems to have Chris and Snoop as his muscle (more on that later).  Of course, it doesn’t hurt that the Major Crimes Unit is trying to follow the money and root out political corruption, and homicide can’t investigate crimes they don’t see, and frankly, aren’t trying too hard to find.  Bunk (Wendell Pierce) believes a missing corner kid, Lex, has been murdered, but with no body, there’s no case. Despite the rising body count, life on the street is relatively quiet.  Daniels (Lance Reddick) now runs the Western District, he’s in a happy relationship with Ronnie (Deirdra Lovejoy), Herc is working protection for Mayor Royce (Glynn Turman), and Lester (Clarke Peters) and Greggs (Sonja Sohn) are happily working their case with no interference from their new commander, who’s too busy working on his summer home to care what his unit is up to.  Most surprising is a happy Jimmy McNulty (Dominic West), who has stopped being a surly drunk and now enjoys domesticated bliss with Beadie Russell (Amy Ryan).  Of course, a happy McNulty isn’t necessarily and interesting McNulty, and the show makes the bold move of marginalizing one of its most popular characters. But the heart of the new season is the new characters Duquan “Dukie” Weems (Jermaine Crawford), Randy Wagstaff (Maestro Harrell), Namond Brice (Julito McCullum), and Michael Lee (Tristan Wilds).  Source: Matt Reviews THE WIRE – Season 4

    On to watch now Season five, stay tuned.

    OT: La Planta 2014

    Another interesting wine from the Ribera del Duero DO, very attractively priced. For me it was quite a pleasant surprise. An excellent example of a job well done.

    • 20160320_145919 Winery: Bodegas Arzuaga Navarro, Ctra. N.122 Aranda-Valladolid, Km. 325 C.P. 47350 Quintanilla de Onésimo (Valladolid). Since its founding in 1993, Bodegas Arzuaga Navarro has been known for its high-quality wines (Crianzas, Reservas, and Grand Reservas), in DO Ribera del Duero. The La Planta estate is named after a 1,000-year-old Mediterranean oak tree presiding on the property. La Planta is also the name of our youngest wine, which is made from grapes grown within a large 3,458-acre natural hunting reserve that is situated in Quintanilla de Onésimo. Within this reserve grow 370 acres of vines, mostly of Tinto Fino but complemented by a small percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot.
    • Phone: +34 983 681 146  
    • Winemaker: Adolfo González
    • Website: 
    • Brand: La Planta Production: 650,000, 75cl bottles of 75 cl and 13,000, 1.5 litre Magnum.
    • DO: Ribera del Duero
    • Type: Read wine aged for 6 months in French and American oak barrels.
    • Vintage: 2014 
    • Alcohol: 14.5 %  
    • Grape Variety: Tinto Fino (aka Tempranillo) 100% 
    • Vineyards: The grapes used to produce La Planta originate from vines that are more than 20 years of age, property of the winery.
    • Soil Type: Chalky-clay, the vines are at about 900 metres above sea level.
    • Bottle Size: 75.0 cl.
    • Price: € 7,25 at my local grocery shop. 
    • My wine rating: 90/100 (A wine of very good to excellent quality) NEW!
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