Thursday, September 28, 2017

HIDDEN AWAY IN OREGON---MY ESCAPE



SOMEWHERE IN THE WOODS OF OREGON, BY A BEAUTIFUL RIVER, THERE IS A HIDE-OUT. INVITATION ONLY. THE NATURAL BEAUTY OF THE LOCATION IS IN A CLASS ALL BY ITSELF.



The hammock was very high and I am short
So peaceful





Tuesday, September 5, 2017

THANK YOU, ANDY COHEN



I HAVE A CONFESSION TO MAKE. I'M NOT ASHAMED TO SAY HOW MUCH I LIKE REALITY TV IF IT'S REAL HOUSEWIVES OR ANYTHING TO DO WITH THE BACHELOR FRANCHISE.

What does embarrass me is my mortifying obsession with a New Jersey housewife named Danielle Staub, who was "removed" from the show a few years ago because there were some "kind of" violent physical fights.

Danielle is in the center and this image is from the first season of the show.

IT TOOK SEVEN YEARS, BUT DANIELLE IS COMING BACK THIS SEASON!!!!

Even though I think I have an east coast "essence," I have lived in Los Angeles my whole life (mostly). I grew up with surfer dudes and surf bunnies, always feeling out of place. I really have no experience with New Jersey people. I am generalizing now, but if you watch this show, they come off as loud, crude, mannerless people who love their children. I truly had never seen creatures like this, and I was intrigued.





I say this with as much respect as I can possibly have---Danielle presented herself as one of the crudest, classless people I'd ever seen. I adored her immediately, so I mean it as an odd compliment. There were many scenes that showed how terrific a mother she was. But, I simply became transfixed by the character on the screen.

I'm so happy she's back.

This post probably makes no sense.  CALL MY THERAPIST.

Monday, September 4, 2017

I LOVE YOU, JOAN



I REMAIN HEARTBROKEN, YET FILLED WITH GRATITUDE

42 YEARS OF FRIENDSHIP


LAKE TAHOE

RABBI JOAN AT PASSOVER

Tuesday, August 29, 2017





KIM NOVAK THANKS YOU, TAYLOR!

Taylor Swift's new song evokes 2 iconic movies in both style and content

The lyrics video for “Look What You Made Me Do” references both Gone Girl and Vertigo.

Taylor Swift, Kim Novak in Vertigo, and Rosamund Pike in Gone Girl
Every weekend, we pick a movie you can stream that dovetails with current events. Old, new, blockbuster, arthouse: They’re all fair game. What you can count on is a weekend watch that sheds new light on the week that was. The movies of the week for August 27 through September 2 are Gone Girl (2014), which is available to digitally rent on AmazonYouTubeVuduiTunes, and Google Play; and Vertigo (1958), which is also available to digitally rent on AmazonYouTubeVuduiTunes, and Google Play.
Taylor Swift began this week by wiping her social media slate clean — deleting old posts and even profile pictures — and ended it by releasing the lyric video for her new track, “Look What You Made Me Do,” with the full music video to premiere at the VMAs on Sunday night. (It’s no accident that Katy Perry is hosting.)
People seem evenly split into two camps over “Look What You Made Me Do”: It’s either interesting or it’s deeply unpleasant. (I confess I’m not feeling it.) But no matter what camp you fall into, the song’s lyric video is worth a look:
The lettering and blocky, graphic artwork is a clear reference to the work of Saul Bass, the iconic minimalist artist whose famous movie title sequences include Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho, as well as the title sequence and poster for Hitchcock’s 1958 thriller Vertigo, the latter of which is heavily evoked in the Swift videoIn Vertigo, a husband enlists a woman in his plot to murder his own wife and make it look like suicide — and that woman becomes trapped in a toxic romance with a far more dangerous man.
The allusion to Bass and his work with Hitchcock is a terrific fit for “Look What You Made Me Do,” a song predicated on the idea that Swift has finally had enough and is striking back. She’s got a list of names and yours is in red, underlined: “I don’t like your perfect crime / how you laugh when you lie,” she sings.
Sound familiar? Yeah. In both visually evoking Bass’s work for Hitchcock and singing later in the song about how she “got smarter,” “got harder,” and “rose up from the dead,” Swift is channeling Amy Dunne, the vengeful protagonist of Gone Girl.
When David Fincher’s Gone Girl hit theaters in 2014, the comparisons to Hitchcock were natural. The story of Nick and Amy Dunne, a couple whose marriage is loaded with twisted secrets and psychological traumas that lead it spectacularly awry, seemed like something Hitch would have tackled — not to mention that Gone Girl employs a similar icy detachment in both its style of filmmaking and its female protagonist.
As Amy goes through careful stagings and impersonations to finesse her revenge against her husband, it’s also hard not to think of Vertigo. The two have very different plots, but they draw on many of the same elements for a similarly dastardly plan. In both movies there are impersonations and mistaken identities, dangerous trysts and faked deaths, and hovering over all of it is a potent sense of dread and twisted psychological suspense.
Saul Bass’s poster for Vertigo
Saul Bass’s poster for Vertigo.
In “Look What You Made Me Do” and its lyric video, Swift is evoking them all, killing off her social media profiles so she can “rise up from the dead” and exact her revenge on — well, on a lot of people, it seems: Kanye and Kim, Katy Perry, and whoever else is on her list.
The bloody, noir-like video nods to Vertigo and the lyrics hint at Gone Girl, but the song draws on a trope that’s much bigger than any of them: the formerly innocent woman who’s made herself smarter and stronger than her enemies, and is about to reemerge with a knife. (That Taylor Swift, Vertigo’s Kim Novak, and Gone Girl’s Rosamund Pike all play convincingly icy blondes is not coincidental.)
Whether this totally works is up for grabs — the very line “look what you made me do” is queasily evocative of a line that abusers are known to use on their victims in order to turn around the blame for their actions. Then again, part of the reason Amy Dunne is a controversial figure is that it’s not easy to see where the line between victim and villain runs through her persona.
So maybe “Look What You Made Me Do” is too muddled to really parse. But its references seem pretty clear: If you’re trying to figure out what Swift has up her sleeve next, these movies may provide a hint.
Watch the trailer for Vertigo:

Sunday, August 27, 2017

WHITNEY--CAN I BE ME? DOCUMENTARY


        I LOVED WHITNEY HOUSTON, 
        JUST LIKE EVERYBODY ELSE



The new documentary on Showtime all this week, was directed by the talented Nick Broomfield. It is hard to watch because once again we have to go through the tragic story and have our hearts ripped out. BUT, YOU MUST WATCH. It helped me understand her pain and made me feel better she wasn't suffering anymore.

It's brilliant, because it shows unseen footage of the "real" Whitney, a drug-user from the hood who knew how to put on a different face and conquer Hollywood. But, it was the lies---about her relationship with Robyn Crawford, the only stabilizing influence in her life; the lie of hiding her true roots; having a mother who drove her mercilessly and controlled her with an iron fist; the obligation of being the sole support of family hangers-on; and her father grabbing for money.

Bobby Brown was a horrible influence, but she was on drugs before she ever met him. What he did for her was treat her with dispect/ghetto behavior, that was familiar to her because she had low self esteem and thought that was what she deserved. It was too late, really, ut she did have the courage to leave him.

I met Whitney back stage at her first Grammys, and she was lovely. I saw a number of her concerts. Regarding her self-esteem, I once saw her at a big charity event in Hollywood, attended by lots of stars. She was the entertainment, and it was the week that "I Will Always Love You" broke big. She did her show and was incredible. They typical Hollywood charity audience was polite, but didn't really clap hard enough after the last song to warrant an encore. Whitney looked at them and said, "Don't you want to hear 'I Will Always Love You?" Of course they were enthusiastic.

The next day I receive a call from someone connected to the event telling me that Whitney's father called her because Whitney was worried and feeling bad that the audience might not have liked her. I was asked to write something fantastic about Whitney and the show in my column so her father could show it to her and make her feel good.

I was honored to do it; felt sad that Whitney was concerned; and was very happy to make her happy. That's how I experienced her insecurity first hand.



"Can I Be Me?," the title of the documentary, is a question Whitney asked many times in private or to her handlers. How sad that she had to die to achieve it. Thank God she and her similarly, tragically-doomed daughter are together in peace.


Thursday, August 17, 2017

"AVERAGE" L.A. WEEKEND..........



FRIDAY NIGHT---LESLEY ANN WARREN AT HOLLYWOOD FOREVER CEMETERY

Yes, cemetery. The LGBT Center held a fundraising screening of Lesley's movie, CLUE, outside on the lawn in the cemetery. The movie is shown on a mausoleum wall. Hollywood Forever does these screenings on a regular basis and they draw a very nice crowd of about 1000 people. Lesley Ann's appearance drew 2500 people, the largest ever for any screening, and raised $100, 000 for The Center. Congratulations!

Check out Lesley's pants. I want them.


SATURDAY DAY----HAMILTON AT THE PANTAGES





I'd had tickets for HAMILTON early on in New York, but was forced to cancel them because of terrorist threats in New York. When the police with guns hit Times Square.....I'm out!

I was skeptical of HAMILTON because people seemed to be really going over the top about it. Well, I saw it and I'm over the top, too. This production at the Pantages is fantastic. HAMILTON really has changed musical theatre forever. I sat there wide-eyed and at attention the whole time. The touring company is brilliant. Total Broadway quality.


SATURDAY NIGHT-----HAPPY BIRTHDAY, CONNIE STEVENS

Connie opened her home for a New England Lobster-Clambake. She invited her closest friends, members of the SAG board, and, of course, her family. Connie is all about family, and if you're her friend, you're "in forever." She looked absolutely beautiful.

Joely, Connie, and Tricia Leigh

Connie's backyard was so welcoming


Tricia and Lainie Kazan



And, at Connie's, there were prayers for
Joe Bologna. His wife and kids were by
his side that night. He and Renee have been
fixtures at Connie's parties for over 40 years.
He died the next day. God bless you,
Sweet, Funny Joe.






SUNDAY----BRUNCH WITH FRIENDS AND TAROT READINGS


Erika, Lynne, Merrin, Lesley, and Jill
At Merrin's suggestion, we went to Sawyer in Silverlake for brunch and it was glorious. We sat in their beautiful garden and ate fantastic food. Then, it was off to House of Intuition on Sunset where we all had readings.