The Journal Gazette
Saturday, October 16, 2021 1:00 am

Coming attractions

Frank Hill

With summer over and cool temperatures signaling colder weather to come, coffee is becoming popular again. That means our treehouse coffeehouse will become busier. Of course, the competition for coffee drinkers is intense.

My partner and I have upped our game. We are offering free movies. With the average movie exceeding 90 minutes, we expect to sell a lot of coffee.

I concede that we made a mistake in choosing our first movie. To keep expenses down, we selected a remake of “True Grit,” the popular movie that starred John Wayne. The remake we selected did not star John Wayne. In his place was Mickey Rooney. You cannot remake “True Grit” with an actor too short to get on his horse. Lesson learned.

Most of our remaining movies will feature the actors who originally appeared. They are irreplaceable. No other actor could perform their respective roles as well.

Examples include Robert Preston as Harold Hill in “The Music Man.” Sean Connery in the James Bond movies. Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones. Ron Moody as Fagin in “Oliver.” Cleavon Little as Sheriff Bart in “Blazing Saddles.” Jamie Foxx as Django in “Django Unchained” and as Ray Charles in “Ray.” Dick Van Dyke as Bert and Julie Andrews as Mary Poppins in “Mary Poppins.” Christopher Plummer as Capt. Von Trapp in “The Sound of Music.”

Before going into business with my partner at the treehouse, I auditioned for the part of Capt. Von Trapp. The producers said I did not look like Christopher Plummer, did not have his accent and could not sing like him. I disagreed. They told me to wake up and smell the coffee.

My wife, pretending to be Cher in “Moonstruck,” slapped me in the face and said to me, “Snap out of it!” I assumed she slapped me because I do not look like Nicholas Cage. Regardless, I smelled the coffee and now I am trying to attract your business with free movies.

Do not assume, however, that we will not mess with the minds of our customers. For example, we are going to considerable expense to film a remake of “Gone With the Wind.” Instead of Clark Gable, the role of Rhett Butler will be performed by George Clooney, with a moustache of course. The horrible fire will make you spill your coffee and you will need to buy more. Ka-ching!

Through the magic of computers, our remake of “North by Northwest” will star Gary Cooper instead of Cary Grant. With your eyes wide open you will see Gary in Cary's role, running through Indiana cornfields, trying to escape the pursuing airplane.

We hope the excitement stimulates your appetite and causes you to order a corn muffin to eat with your coffee. Ka-ching!

When speaking of Cary Grant, you naturally think of Randolph Scott. I bet Cary always wanted to star in a western. Our computer will replace Randolph with Cary in “Ride The High Country.” Just thinking of high country and snow in the mountains will make you feel cold. You will need more coffee to warm your insides. Ka-ching!

Aw shucks, I knew you would want to see a James Stewart movie. I understand, but you have to admit either Jim Carrey or Robin Williams would make “It's a Wonderful Life” less depressing. OK, the ending of that movie was upbeat, but the movie was like someone knocking you down and then extending a hand to help you get up.

If you insist on the James Stewart version, I recommend drinking one of our Christmas coffees with peppermint or caramel and whipped cream while you watch the movie. The coffee may make the movie easier to swallow. Ka-ching!

If you want to have what I am having, how about a Billy Crystal movie? Mr. Crystal enjoys our coffee and movies so much that he complains we open only at 6 a.m. each day. He says that if you are going to spend the rest of the day watching movies, you want the rest of the day to begin as soon as possible.

Stop by the treehouse for a cup or two of java.

As Jack Palance said in City Slickers, “The day ain't over yet.”

Frank Hill is a Fort Wayne resident.

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