Expect the Unexpected

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Archive for the category “Film”

Patricia’s picks for the Oscars


Gravity, satrring Sandra Bullock and george Clooney is one of the Oscar nominees for Best Picture.

Gravity, starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney is one of the Oscar nominees for Best Picture.

The late film critic Gene Siskel once said he thought the Oscar for Best Picture should go to the film that “did what it set out to do.” While that might seem like a broad brush, when reviewing this year’s Academy Award contenders that’s how I ranked them. For the acting categories, I chose who I thought played the role so well I couldn’t imagine any other actor doing it better.
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10 things I learned about Bill “The Spaceman” Lee


Bill Lee and a young baseball fan at The Ridgefield Playhouse. —Patricia Gay photo all rights reserved

Bill Lee and a young baseball fan at The Ridgefield Playhouse. —Patricia Gay photo all rights reserved

Bill Lee is a character inside and out. At 67, the once-great major league baseball left-hander has never given up the game. He’s still playing, and last week finished a tournament in Florida (his team won).
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We’ll miss Philip Seymour Hoffman


Philip Seymour Hoffman as a conflicted priest in Doubt. My favorite screen performance.

Philip Seymour Hoffman as a priest in Doubt. While he had a great body of work, I think this was my favorite performance.

It wasn’t time for Philip Seymour Hoffman to leave us. But he’s gone and will be greatly missed.

He could play a rumpled loser, a gadabout author, a nasty prep student, or a religious cult leader with ease. He also had his way with Broadway in True West, Long Day’s Journey Into Night and Death of a Salesman.

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Watch Christopher Plummer’s favorite performance tonight


Christopher Plummer in Barrymore, tonight on PBS.

Christopher Plummer in Barrymore, tonight on PBS.

I know what I’m doing tonight. Forget going out to dinner or to the movies, or ::gah:: to the mall. I’m going to put some logs on the fire, make some Parmesan Crisps to go with a glass of wine, and curl up on the sofa and watch Christopher Plummer in Barrymore on Great Performances on PBS.
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The Wolf of Wall Street: Martin Scorcese needs an editor


martin19122013Watching the film The Wolf of Wall Street on New Year’s Day, I felt deceived.

During those three long hours (plus 26 minutes of coming attractions) my mind kept drifting from the plot about excessive fraud, to the excessiveness of the film’s director Martin Scorcese.

The film is based on the life of con man Jordan Belfort, adapted from his autobiographical book. After being laid off as a stock broker on Black Monday in 1987, Belfort took to pump and dump schemes — selling worthless penny stocks to investors and making millions in the process. He lived a jetsetting drug-induced lifestyle with his ill gotten gains, until he got caught and arrested by the FBI.
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Kennedy Center Honors: Carol Channing petition is on its way!


CarolCollagelrg

Hello, Carol!

To the delight of her many fans, a petition supporting performing legend Carol Channing for a Kennedy Center Honor is being hand delivered to the honors committee this week.

The petition was started by Richard Skipper, an entertainer, celebrity blogger and MAC award winner, asking the honors committee to recognize Ms. Channing for her lifetime of work and accomplishment and contributions to the performing arts. Read more…

The Third Man, the musical?


Colin Firth in the Harry Lime role created by Orson Welles? I could see it.

Colin Firth in the Harry Lime role created by Orson Welles? I could see it.

Could a story about a wartime racketeer who steals penicillin, dilutes it, and sells it on the black market injuring innocent children, be the premise of a musical?

That was a recent topic of discussion on a chat board on BroadwayWorld.com.

There’s talk that the classic 1949 film, The Third Man, written by Graham Greene and directed by Carol Reed, is being made into a musical in Vienna by an Austrian production company, Vereinigte Buehnen Wien (VBW). Read more…

Ci vediamo James Gandolfini


Mourners gather outside the Cathedral of St. John the Divine today in New York to pay their respects to the late James Gandolfini. —Getty photo

Mourners gather outside the Cathedral of St. John the Divine today in New York to pay their respects to the late James Gandolfini. —Getty photo

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Happy Eliza Doolittle Day!


Henry Higgins (Rex Harrison) entices Eliza Doolittle (Audrey Hepburn) by offering her chocolates in the film My Fair Lady.

Henry Higgins (Rex Harrison) entices Eliza Doolittle (Audrey Hepburn) by offering her chocolates in the film My Fair Lady.

May 20th is Eliza Doolittle Day, named for the beloved Cockney flower girl in the musical My Fair Lady.

This isn’t a widely celebrated holiday, not as popular or well-known as the likes of Arbor Day, but it has its special allure and fans.

I plan to celebrate the day by attending a My Fair Lady reading with professional actors.

The date for Eliza Doolittle Day came from lyrics in the song Just You Wait, in which Eliza sings:

“One day I’ll be famous, I’ll be proper and prim,
Gone to St. James so often I will call it St. Jim.
One evening the King will say, “Oh, Liza, old thing,
I want all of England your praises to sing. Read more…

Desert Island Films


LastDesert

If you were stranded forever on a desert island what 10 films would you bring with you?

You’re probably thinking, “If I’m stuck on a desert island, and I had the technology to watch movies, I’d probably get rescued.” And that’s probably true. But let’s just assume for the time being that we’re stuck on this lush island with a film projector, screen, electricity, and an everlasting pitcher of mojitos (Or in my friend Miles’ case, bourbon). Read more…

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