WOODY ALLEN’S “TO ROME WITH LOVE”
Woody Allen is in the movie. Allen is just as clever and perky now as he has ever been. And he has not lost his directing touch. The film can get a little confusing in the four different plots. Trying to figure out who and what each plot is about, it can be a little tricky.
Alec Baldwin plays a role of a famous architect. Baldwin’s part is very strange. Half of the time it’s like he is in a group of people talking, but they don’t hear him. Is he dead? You figure it out. On the other hand he converses with some of the people in the movie and other times they don’t seem to know that he is even there. Ummm – very confusing. Strange that they don’t intersect.
Woody Allen has plenty of funny lines to throw around. And that’s why he’s in the movies. Also Roberto Benigni (remember him from the Academy Awards when he walks on the back of the Theatre chairs?)In this movie he wakes up one day and discovers that he has become a national star in Rome. Believe it or not – he became famous for saying things like: “I got up this morning.” Yep – that’s it. People want to know what he will say tomorrow – and he gives them this. “I had breakfast this morning”. His fans love it and follow him everywhere. It’s just hilarious.
There are lots of gorgeous women in the cast – Ellen Page, Alessandra Mastronardi and Penelope Cruz plays a hot looking high-class prostitute in a very tight dress that covers very little. Tsk, Tsk – what is this world coming to?
Well “To Rome with Love” will make some bucks – it will not be as “hot” as Allen’s “Midnight in Paris” – but like the Paris Movie – “Rome” is just as gorgeous. The Italian comedy is a riot. At times it even reminds of Sacha Baron. All in all this entire Movie is probably much, much better than what is playing around town. Summer time is not the best time for movies. Woody Allen gives Rome a Special Glow. It’s a tale full of love and beauty. I say – “It’s Bright and Charming!”
Now playing at Theatres everywhere
RATING: THREE BOXES OF POPCORN!!!
MY FAIR LADY – MEGA, MEGA ENTRANCING!
MY FAIR LADY (the musical) is based on George Bernard Shaw’s ‘Pygmalion’ with book and lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner and music by Frederick Loewe. The story whirls around Eliza Doolittle, a Cockney flower girl who reluctantly takes speech lessons from professor Henry Higgins, a phoneticist. He is trying to pass Eliza off as a well-born lady.
The musical’s 1956 Broadway production certainly stirred up the show as it hit the record for the longest run of any musical theatre production in history. Then it was followed by the hit London production. That was followed by the film version, and numerous revivals. And ever since – it has been called ‘the perfect musical.”
Presented on the Tiny Stage at the SF Playhouse – I was getting ready to wonder if a lavish show like this show would capture the brilliance of former fame. But, you know what? The Cast was full of energy. They gave the impact, the fullness of the story and the full glory of the music.
This “Lady” gives us another impressionable evening of watching Eliza’s blooming into a proper ‘Lady’). The magnificent songs are brilliantly performed. So real – so enticing. I love musicals and “My Fair Lady” is one of the best. The lyrics shine all the way to the races. When Eliza finally makes a break through with proper English in Act Two – Higgins, Pickering, Mrs. Pearce and the Servants jubilantly sing the rousing – “You Did it” – referring to the miracle that Eliza no longer sounds like a waif on the streets. And you know the famous song – “On the Street Where You Live” (sung by Freddy) who slowly falls in love. Whether he likes it our not.
The musical is just wonderful. It’s a ride that starts out wild on the streets, and accelerates from there – from then on it is Fun, Fun, and Fun - in this richly clever entertainment. And wait until to see the clever set.
RATING: FOUR GLASSES OF CHAMPAGNE!!!! (highest rating) –trademarked-
THE CAST IS BRILLANT. HERE THEY ARE: Johnny Moreno (Henry Higgins) – Luke Chapman (Freddy) – Charles Dean (Alfred P. Doolittle) – Richard Frederick (Colonel Pickering) – Monique Hafen (Eliza Doolittle) – Karen Hirst (Mrs Higgins) and Justin Gilman, Mandy Khohnevisan – Kenneth McPherson- Randy Nazarian – and Corinne Proctor. Thanks to this Cast – this is a musical that you will never forger. A love story --for all time! You can’t get anymore powerful acting than in this gorgeous romantic tale.
RATING: Four glasses of Champagne!!!! (highest rating) – trademarked-
NOW PLAYING AT THE SF PLAYHOUSE ON SUTTER (near Powell)
MORE GOOD NEWS: Save the Date! The Tenth Anniversary season will open at a new Venue: - @ 450 Post Street. The opening show – “Bloody, Bloody, Andrew Jackson” written by Alex Timbers. And the play will be directed by Jon Tracy. Opening night is Saturday, October 13th 2012 – 8pm. “Andy’s back and he’s ready to Rock!” The new Stage at Post Street will carry the same Theatre name – “SF Playhouse!” See you there. This will be the SF Playhouse’s permanent new residence.
SWEENEY TODD – THE DEMON BARBER
Lets start off with “The Worst Pies in London” – a catchy little tune. Here’s a sample: The Pie Maker sings – “Did you come in for a pie sir? Do forgive me if my head’s a little vague. What was that? But you’d think we had the plague – from the way that people keep avoiding! Heaven knows I try, sir!” Yes, Mrs. Lovett makes the ‘worst pies’ in London, but she does spice them up with body parts (all the neighbors cats have disappeared.) Well, I would say that the neighbors would get a little suspicious.
Look, this is a great musical. It’s outrageous – but it takes really good singers. Most of them on the stage at the Eureka Theatre are pretty good. But they would be even better if we could hear the lyrics. I suggest that they use some mikes around the stage or on their heads. Take a nod from “Les Mis” – they had a marvelous sound system. I know that would be too expensive - but there are rentable sound systems. Not a word was missed.
I really looked forward to this “Ray of Light Theatre” production. They are always so good. And there are moments on the stage that are fantastic – but all in all, it didn’t come close to other Ray of Light shows.
I would suggest that they plant some mikes around the stage. Another enhancement should be the stage. It’s too cluttered and difficult to understand what is going on. Sure, many people may know what is happening – but not everyone. Also – I would get a real barber chair that victims can lean back so that their heads fall in the slide to the basement. Sounds gory, but that’s what the musical is all about – Gore!
Now playing at the Eureka theatre.
Rating: Two Glasses of Champagne!! –trademarked-
The Photo of Lee Hartgrave Boy Reporter is by Jim Ferreira – Film Noir & Hollywood Glamour. www.lafterhall.com.
YOUR COMMENTS ARE WELCOME HERE: firstname.lastname@example.org
PRESS STUFF: email@example.com
Podcasts, blogs, vblogs: web.mac.com/buzzmixer/