“Hey You Guys!” New Wave at 5o, 80s at 25

August 11, 2010 at 7:32 pm (Uncategorized)

2010 marks high- low-, and midbrow film classic anniversaries; French New Wave films reach 5o, the Goonies hit 25, and John Hughes teen classics hover in the quarter century range.  Reviewing films you loved as a child can be tricky territory like getting back together with an ex–you start to wonder why you loved it so much the first time around, question your past memories, and you often chalk it up to youthful digressions.  But, all films, and exes, are not created equal.  I wanted to test my favorite classics at 30 to see if they held up.  To be safe, I thought it was best to start celebrating this year’s film anniversaries with a 1960 classic I had never seen.
In honor of the 50th anniversary of Jean-Luc Godard’s Breathless (“À Bout de Souffle”), a restored version of the film with new subtitles screened for one week only in the DC area at the AFI, Sivler Spring (the best cinema in “DC” located in Maryland). There were only seven people at the Monday night showing, but the weirdness and coolness of mid-century French New Wave was present.  It was my first time seeing the film, but I had read about the play on Hollywood cliché: the brooding, handsome, lead French actor with his cigarette and fedora, the attractive American blonde wearing his pinstripe, white collared shirt post-orgasm.  Actually, the Mad Men (hooray for the return of Season 4!) craze makes watching the 60s aesthetic seem fresh, hip, and very now.  Check out the old trailer for the film here.  All in all, I was thrilled to have the chance to see this film on the big screen.
Meanwhile, rewatching The Goonies as an adult was a bit disappointing.  I couldn’t believe how cheesy it was.  This kid classic that is imprinted in the brains of all 80s babies was so, well, Spielberg cheese.  I’m sorry to say that the Goonies, as much as I loved it as a kid, did not hold up the test of time.  The saving grace of rewatching the cult flick?  This scene made me LOL after all these years.
the goonies
John Hughes films have weathered a bit better.  Pretty in Pink, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast Club, etc. are also reposted to the big screen this month at AFI, Silver Spring.
After the aged Brat Pack-led tribute to the late director at the Oscars, AFI honors the best of 80s teen cinema by screening all of Hughes’ classic works.  I mean this amazing scene from Pretty in Pink still makes me smile.  I’d take “a little tenderness” form Duckie– then and now!  There are numerous websites and tributes to John Hughes’ films, and while many of us where on the young side when these movies were released they have survived well proving that there is still a little bit of a red-head, insecure, teenage girl inside us all.

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The Wedding Industrial Complex

August 3, 2010 at 6:09 pm (Uncategorized)

Chelsea Clinton, Chelsea clinton wedding, vera wang, vera wang wedding, wedding dress

This past Saturday, I was a bridesmaid in a wedding in New York.  And while it was not the wedding in New York, it was a beautiful wedding with two very talented and in love friends.  In the midst of the exorbitant costs of hosting a wedding party today in the New York tri-state area, many forget that the best weddings are usually the ones where the personalities of the couple shine through the TV shows/Bride Magazines/hype industrial complex.

At Chelsea Clinton’s wedding, the following poem was read:

“The Life That I Have” by the late British poet Leo Marks

The life that I have
Is all that I have
And the life that I have
Is yours

The love that I have
Of the life that I have
Is yours and yours and yours.

A sleep I shall have
A rest I shall have
Yet death will be but a pause

For the peace of my years
In the long green grass
Will be yours and yours
And yours

Apparently, the author was a cryptographer in World War II and used his poetry to hide messages for the British forces.  This love poem had nothing to do with the War, but I loved the idea of complexities and layers of meaning even in a simple line. The author wrote the poem for a deceased girlfriend and in his memoir noted, “I transmitted a message to her which I’d failed to deliver when I’d had the chance.”

The Wedding Industrial Complex has nothing on a free well-versed expression of love.  The wedding last Saturday turned this well-seasoned bridesmaid into a hopeful…at least for the weekend.

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Advice from LeBron James

August 2, 2010 at 5:51 pm (Uncategorized)

In Cleveland, fans considered James’ departure a betrayal that ranks second to Art Modell‘s efforts to relocate the Cleveland Browns to Baltimore.[107] Cleveland Cavaliers (Cavs) majority owner Dan Gilbert almost immediately published an open letter to fans, denouncing James’ decision as a “selfish”, “heartless”, “callous”, and “cowardly betrayal”, while guaranteeing that the Cavs would win an NBA title before the “self-declared former King.”[108] Gilbert’s sports-memorabilia company Fathead also lowered the price of wall graphics depicting James from $99.99 to $17.41, the birth year of Benedict Arnold.[109] William Rhoden of The New York Times defended James by stating that Gilbert’s “venomous, face-saving personal attack”, along with the ensuing “wrath of jersey-burning fans”, only validated James’ decision to leave Cleveland.[110] J. A. Adande of ESPN said, however, that James chose to promote the drama of his decision in an hour-long television special instead of showing “common courtesy” to notify Cleveland and other teams of his plans.[111] On July 12, 2010, NBA Commissioner David Stern fined Gilbert $100,000 for the letter’s contents, while also criticizing the way James handled free agency.[112]

I empathize with LeBron.

LeBron James and I have a lot in common these days.  He is a 6 foot 8 inch, 250 pound man– I am 5 foot 3.5 inch woman sometimes with an appetite of a 250 pound man.  He was the first overall pick in the 2003 NBA draft–I was awarded for the highest Spirit and Merit award in 8th grade in 1993.  LeBron won Olympic medals–I went to the Olympics Closing Ceremonies in 1996.  We are practically twins.  So, I understand his decision to leave his hometown Cleveland Cavs.  Sometimes you just got to do whats best for your career.  Haven’t the Cavs fans been watching Celebrity Apprentice?  It’s not personal; it’s business.

And maybe LeBron was just tired of Ohio.  Perhaps all that “lake effect” had gotten to his head–he wasn’t sleeping properly and needed some sunshine and good Cuban sandwiches.  Basically, LeBron got a better offer and he’s sorry that he had to burn some bridges in the process.

Taking advice from LeBron, I recently backed out of a job two days prior to the official start date.  I didn’t want to break up with them over the phone and on email, but I was out-of-town and they were out of the country.  I’m burning a bridge, but luckily no one is burning jerseys with my name.  I’ve dealt with guilt and cranky HR professionals though.  I wish I could have given more notice, that the order of things could have been different, but this is how the timing worked–it was out of my control.  The Miami Heat came to me with a better offer and I want to wear a NBA championship ring one day.   What would you do?  WWJD?  LeBron and I stand strong.

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