Saturday, March 29, 2008

HC: Blah Blah Blog...

I keep waiting for something to hit me, something to grab me and drag me to the computer to put into a well-worded, important, worth-writing and, for others, worth-reading blog entry. Well, maybe that will never happen!

The biggest thing on my mind these days is Spring. Technically it's here, but where? It's sunny but cold. I'm tired of being cold. I feel like I've been cold for months and months and months. I'm hardly a sun worshipper as I prefer my skin pale and Victorian, but I do want the sun baking on my back, through my clothes, for very short periods of time. I want to see buds on the trees, and flowers blooming. I want to smell flowers as I walk outside. I want to find it difficult to work because I have spring fever and can't think straight...wait. That I do have. Spring seems to be the very short window between complaining about the cold to complaining about the heat. But it's also delightful, no matter how short.

I've been watching a lot of movies recently, very varied. Recent films such as La Vie En Rose and Atonement, old films like Love Affair and Easter Parade. Comedy favorites such as Zoolander and First Wives Club. I love watching movies. The first two I mentioned, La Vie and Atonement, were good and depressing. If even half of what happened in the film actually happened to Edith Piaf, she was one unlucky but strong woman. Disaster after disaster after disappointment after pain after heartbreak...I kept waiting for her to board the Titanic or the Hindenberg. I loved the music, but the movie was just too dark. Piaf's life made Frida Kahlo's film bio life look comfy and easy.

Atonement was slow and artsy, but righted itself for me as a whole. I ended up liking and respecting it very much. For those who know me, my one obvious complaint was Brenda Blethyn's lack of screen time. Love Affair is the movie that was remade as An Affair to Remember and the semi-recent Warren Beatty/Annette Bening Love Affair. I guess if a story works it works? But then, I'm one of maybe five people on earth who don't like An Affair to Remember. I've never been able to sit through more than 20 minutes of it. I love Cary Grant and like Deborah Kerr, but, oy, they are unbearable in that film. Contrarywise, I really liked Charles Boyer and Irene Dunne in Love Affair. They were charming, likeable, warm, funny, real, and special. For you old movie fans, Maria Ouspenskaya appears as Boyer's grandmother and, GASP, smiles a lot!! I didn't know she could. She was lovely. I recommend the film, despite the bad Netflix print, and one too many songs by Irene Dunne. I like her singing, but the combo of the bad sound and her high notes gets painful. Still, the movie is a perfect example of what Hollywood in 1939 could do really well.

Easter Parade? Eh. Oh, the talent involved on that screen, though! Fred Astaire, Judy Garland, Ann Miller, Peter Lawford. Fred's character was unlikeable, and I saw no reason given why Judy (SPOILER) would fall in love with him. I can understand, however, why anyone on earth would love Judy. She seems to burst with energy, enthusiasm, humor, talent, cuteness...just overflowing out of her pores. She has to be one of the most amazing performers ever.

Perhaps it's strange that of all the movies I mentioned I probably like Zoolander the most. What a funny, clever film, and an on-target slap in the face to modeling. It's so funny, with great little bits by Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara, and Jon Voight as Zoolander's coal-mining dad, who is unimpressed with his son's new mer-man commercial, "Moisture is the essence of wetness." I do like movies that have an important lesson in them: that "there's more to life than being really really good looking." Speaking of good looking, what a treat to see three 'older' actresses (in Hollywood, that's anyone over 25) in First Wives Club. Actually, there's more than leads Goldie Hawn, Diane Keaton, and Bette Midler, there's Maggie Smith, Eileen Heckart, Stockard Channing, Marcia Gay Harden, and youngsters Sarah Jessica Parker, Jennifer Dundas, and Elizabeth Berkley. Very different from the book, and very funny and well-done. I've read the book numerous times; I've seen the movie numerous times. Love 'em both.

What else can I ramble on about. Cell phones. I checked my bill and discovered I was being charged approximately $10 a month for something I didn't even know I had: games. One of my kids apparently signed on for some game on my phone that I didn't want (High School Shoot Out, anyone? How's about Texas Hold 'em? No thanks.) I'm not a cheap person. Just look at my theater-going expenses! But I hate wasting little bits of money on nothing. The games are gone, the kids are warned. The lesson? There's more to life than being really really, sorry. The lesson is, check over those bills before you pay them!

Tonight I will introduce my son to the original The Planet of the Apes, which I haven't seen in many years. I don't much like science fiction. I can't stand Charlton Heston. The monkey masks are less than great, but there's something about that film I find very interesting and upsetting. It scared me so much when I was a kid! I wonder how it will affect me tonight. It's fine with me if monkeys and gorillas take over. I love animals, and if it's their turn that's fair, but I seem to remember the Human Dioramas, and that really scared me. We'll see.

On Wednesday my husband and I are going to see South Pacific on broadway! I've never seen it live, and I'm very excited. It's at the Vivian Beaumont Theater in Lincoln Center, where I spent many, many, many an hour seeing The Light in the Piazza. Piazza's Kelli O'Hara is playing Nellie Forebush, although I secretly (okay, not so secretly) wish it were Piazza's Victoria Clark instead. Okay, okay, Vicki is 'too old.' I DON'T CARE. She would've been a perfect Nellie, I'm positive. But Kelli O'Hara is hardly chopped liver (I don't really know what that expression means). O'Hara is beautiful, talented, and sings like an angel, so I'm sure she'll be great. (But she's no Victoria Clark.) Oops, did I say that?

On Wednesday I'll have dinner with my sister and our best friend Susan (who is our sister, too), and my husband. A date out. I am so thankful I live so close to New York and its theater and museums. I don't much treasure anything else in NYC, but it does have the best of two things I Wendy and Susan, so that makes four things.

Time for my afternoon coffee.

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