Friday, May 16, 2008

Small Town Talk


Well, blahg, I finally finished the LZ gig, and I’m here to report that it’s not always glitz and glam in Hollywood. For instance, there was one day when I was sent to pick up a lunch in Santa Monica, from a personal chef, and drive it to a restaurant in Beverly Hills. That’s right. And another time, I was in trouble for not keeping the office fridge stocked with the appropriate sized water bottles. All of this for someone who does not even know my name.

When I relay such anecdotes to friends and family, nobody believes it. But these acts no longer faze me, as I’ve come to realize that the people who run the film industry are a different species altogether. It’s fascinating that someone who can connect to the masses with a politician’s ease, with major Blockbuster pictures, doesn’t necessarily know how to relate to the low-lifes on an individual or day-to-day basis. Somewhere along the road to success, luxury becomes a necessity, and people here accept it. But I’m putting in my dues and the beat goes on.

Monday, May 05, 2008

The Waterline

Gawd I love this state. I honestly believe that it’s an uninformed decision to live anywhere besides California. Most recently, I took a lovely little jaunt to Santa Barbara, which although only two hours away, feels like a whole other planet. Or no, not really, more like a less stodgy Hamptons. Driving through the countryside of Santa Ynez Valley, on the way to the wineries, though, is kinda how I expect Tuscany to be for those on a tighter budget.

And even if I am usually hard pressed to discern between a bottle of two buck chuck and a 1982 Lafite-Roshschild Bordeaux, once you have a taste of the real stuff, the contrast is harshly apparent. And the pairing, now that’s a real luxury. The only problem is, when you leave the realm of fine dining, you expect everything to be paired for you. When stopping at a roadside diner on the way home, for example, I was a little more than disappointed when the 16-year-old cash register attendant did not know if I should have lemonade or soda with my tuna melt.

Friday, May 02, 2008


Had the good luck of happening upon a focus group screening for the new Rian Johnson film, The Brothers Bloom. And I have to say, hands down, that it is already my favorite movie of 2008. The premise – a pair of con men brothers orchestrate a high jinks heist that sends them on an international escapade – is beatific in its old school approach to story writing. It also helps that I’m a sucker for anything that’s even remotely stylized, so every single luxuriant set piece and costume really hit the spot.

I must admit, as well, that I’m a sap for Adrian Brody and Mark Ruffalo, aka the Brothers Bloom. Even Rachel Weisz is much more loaded with humor than I thought, perfectly highlighted in one particular scene where she demonstrates her multitude of shut-in hobbies. And Bang Bang (pictured above) is the most bad-ass female character to walk the screen since Beatrix Kiddo. So the film is kinda how it’d be if the Coen Bros and Wes Anderson teamed up to make The Sting or Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. But the rest of you have to wait until the fall to see this piece of brilliance, solly cholly.