Tag Archives: celebs

The Weekly Smile

Sharon gave me a lovely early birthday gift last Sunday: tickets to Fiddler on the Roof at the Pantages in Hollywood! This was a mommy-daughter afternoon, just the two of us, which we haven’t done since my granddaughter arrived. So much fun to spend time with my sweet girl! And what a fantastic show!

I’ve seen Fiddler on the screen a zillion times and practically have it memorized. It’s one of my favorite musicals. But the stage show is slightly different. Forex, the part of Perchik, the communist scholar, is much funnier. Actually, I thought the actor who played Tevye, Yehezkel Lazarov, made his lines funnier too. This was apparent in “Tevye’s Dream,” which was totally hysterical. The entire cast did a fabulous job. 💖🎶😀

The Pantages itself is a beautiful, comfy venue, plus it was fun to be in Hollywood. We got to walk down a portion of the star sidewalk, which was neat. When I go to Los Angeles these days, I generally visit my fam and then come right back.

Still smiling! 🎉😀 🎶

Z is for Zany [A2Z]

Zany, madcap, wacky, screwball, etc. are all great words to describe What’s Up Doc? This is a super hilarious romantic comedy from 1972, starring Barbra Streisand and Ryan O’Neal. Madeline Kahn (RIP) costars brilliantly in the same kind of role she plays in Young Frankenstein: the OCD uptight fiancée who is made to appear less desirable than the manic pixie dream girl (before we called them that).

The movie opens in San Francisco and begins with four identical plaid suitcases. One belongs to Ryan’s Dr. Howard Bannister and contains special rocks he needs for a science conference. Another is filled with top-secret documents and belongs to “Mr. Smith.” A “Mr. Jones” is chasing after these documents. The third bag is filled with expensive jewelry. The last bag belongs to Barbra’s Judy Maxwell and contains clothing. Judy chases Howard around his hotel, both to try to find her bag and to score free meals.

At the same time, two hotel employees are attempting to steal the bag they believe has the jewelry, while Jones is trying to get the document bag. Everyone ends up with the wrong bag, of course! Howard’s fiancée is having trouble understanding why Judy keeps popping up all over the place. There is a rival for a science grant who tries to take advantage of Howard’s predicament. It’s all so wild!

Since it’s a romcom, there is a happy ending for Judy and Howard, yayyy. 💖

And with that, I am finished with the alphabloggery, thank Godzilla.

T is for Train [A2Z]

While You Were Sleeping is a sweet romcom starring Sandra Bullock, one of my favorite actors. “Train” comes from the fact that Sandra plays Lucy, an employee of the CTA who works at the booth where people drop their tokens before boarding. She’s a single gal (with an adorable cat, natch) who fantasizes about one particular handsome man who passes by each morning. He’s always perfectly dressed in a suit and coat, and Lucy imagines herself to be in love with him.

On Christmas morning, the handsome man is mugged and pushed onto the train tracks. Lucy leaves her booth and runs out to help; she rolls him away from the oncoming train. He’s unconscious, and when he wakes up in the hospital, he has amnesia.

Due to a mumbling misunderstanding, the hospital staff believes Lucy is the man’s fiancée. When his family shows up, Lucy is introduced not only as his fiancée but also as the person who saved his life. She is overwhelmed with their gratitude and the mistaken identity farce rolls on.

But then the handsome man’s charming and adorable brother arrives.

Sandra is so great here. I just love her. I also loved her in Miss Congeniality, but I couldn’t use that as one of my romcoms unfortunately because although MC has the happy ending, I did watch MC2, which shows Sandra’s character and her man from MC1 breaking up. Too sad! Not that I didn’t love MC2 too, mind you. But it was one of those girl power movies, which are great in their own right. Sandra also rocks those. She’s fabulous in everything. 💖

Show & Tell

Warning: this turned into a rambling pointless bunch of jabbering. More than usual. 😂

Melanie haz questions:

1. Was the last thing you read digital or print?

I’m not counting online “news,” since that’s like reading cereal boxes. Actually, it would probably be more informative to read cereal boxes (note to self: buy some Cap’n Crunch). The last book I read on my Kindle was Not Quite Dating, which I already reviewed for the alphablog and am now done with all those posts, yay! So, that leaves Us Magazine, which hits my mailbox every Saturday. Why? I dunno! I’m certainly not paying for it. Somehow, a free subscription has been gifted to me and it shows up every week. I spend a couple minutes paging through and then toss it. Can’t remember anything much about this one except the spread of celebs in their wine colored dresses. Every issue has two pages near the front with a clothing theme. I do like themes. Oh, Kate Hudson was in this issue too. She’s 40 and happy. I’m happy she’s happy cuz I like her.

2. Are you more an extrovert or introvert?

According to the definition, I’m an introvert. My friends also call themselves introverts, but they always want to get together, which I find curious. Shouldn’t they need to spend lots of time alone, as I do? Granted, I have been more social than normal lately due to Game of Thrones, but that’s temporary. It’ll be over in a month. There is something particularly compelling about the ending to this dramatic and complex show that makes it fun to watch and discuss with others. Most of the time however I have no need for that and prefer to watch things alone. I crave alone time to think and read and write in peace and quiet. It recharges me. Too much peopling makes me literally crazy and I feel the air getting so heavy with noise and vibration and other people talking moving breathing that my body will crush and implode if I don’t get away.

3. How is your life different from what you imagined as a younger person?

When I was a teenager, I imagined myself becoming a career-focused professional, possibly a scientist. I wasn’t dreaming of marriage and children, but that is what I did. Next, I assumed I’d be married for the rest of my life; when I divorced, I thought I should find someone else. It didn’t occur to me until relatively recently that I would spend my life alone, but now that I’ve accepted it, I’m fine. It might be the ideal state for me, even.

4. Do you think about dying?   Does death scare you?  Why or why not?

I think about it a lot. It used to terrify me ~ when it first hit me that I would die and be erased, I freaked out. I was 12 and in a car with my parents coming back to NJ after visiting peeps in Ohio. I knew earlier that I would die, of course, but the impact of the erasure didn’t affect me until that moment. I mentioned I was upset and my parents dismissed my concerns. For a long time, I was angry at them over this, but I’ve come to understand they did the best they could.

I didn’t sleep for a year ~ at least, this is how I remember it. I stumbled through the days, exhausted but somehow not letting on I had this enormous burden. And I must have slept some or I would have died or become ill, but I remember all that year lying awake utterly terrified, making words out of words in my head. My schoolwork wasn’t affected, so no one knew or cared.

Eventually, I grew to live with the bleak erasure knowledge. It’s what keeps me sympathetic to religious believers. Of course you would take the comfort of an afterlife option if it were intellectually available to you! You’d have to be nuts not to grab onto that if there were any way to make sense of it. Unfortunately, I can’t make it fit into my logical brainspace. I wish I could.

Lately though, I’m not so afraid any longer. Maybe it’s because I am just so damn tired of being in pain every day. At least that will stop, which is something to look forward to, blissful non-awareness of aches and migraines. I also won’t have to think about all the things I’ve failed to accomplish, what a freaking relief. Not to mention all the mistakes I’ve made, gahhh. All erased from MY mind, since there won’t be any more “my mind.” And if others criticize or gossip, I won’t know, so I won’t care. Nice!

Plus, things are getting old as I’m getting old. Samey same same same. Sure, I still enjoy stuff, but meh. As someone I once loved said: “Do I really care about seeing the millionth issue of the New York Times?”

It’s his birthday today, btw. Happy birthday to the man who broke my heart. Still much older than I am. Still living in a big lonely house with his wife and their money. Now we’re all unhappy, great.

5. Gratitude challenge: find something you are thankful for in nature.

California mountains and beaches and sunsets and flowers, of course…

S is for Splash [A2Z]

Splash is a fun, fantasy romcom starring Tom Hanks and Daryl Hannah in the lead romantic roles, and it also has the ever-hilarious John Candy (RIP) and Eugene Levy. The movie was directed by Ron Howard. Tom Hanks has done a lot of comedy, and also many serious roles too, but I like him best as the good guy in a romcom. We’ll be seeing him again toward the end of the alphabet.

What’s interesting to me about the plot of Splash and so many of these romcoms and romance novels too is that one or both of the protagonists are absolutely sure of what they want, and don’t want, in a life partner. This is just like real life, especially now in the age of dating sites when we have our lists of must-haves and can’t-stands. We know the kind of person we’re attracted to and have a hazy picture of him or her in our mind already before we’ve even spoken to anyone. We kinda know how tall they should be, their age, their body shape, their political positions, their hobbies, what music and movies they enjoy, how much money they have, what kind of traveler they are, their feelings on kids and pets, and most importantly exactly how many miles away they live. Someone might be perfect, but we don’t want to drive more than 27 minutes to date them. God forbid.

In real life, and in fiction, we treat people like objects, to be examined for flaws and then rejected in the endless quest for a better one. But in fiction what happens is that the situations are contrived so that the protagonists are forced to spend time with each other. During this time, they realize that their preconceived ideas of what makes a perfect partner are wrong and that this other person, who seemed like “a bad match” on paper because s/he didn’t fit into the checkboxes, is actually the right one for them.

Dialogue between the brothers in Splash:

Allen: I don’t understand. All my life, I’ve been waiting for someone and when I find her, she’s… she’s a fish.

Freddie: Nobody said love’s perfect.

Allen: Oh, Freddie, I don’t expect it to be perfect! But for God’s sake, it’s usually human! Every day, people meet, they fall in love, every day! And look at what I got.

[…]

Freddie: Yeah? Well, that’s a crock. It doesn’t work that way. Look, do you at least realize how happy you were with her? That is, of course, when you weren’t driving yourself crazy. Every day? Come on. Some people will never be that happy. I’ll never be that happy!

So, this is why I like the fantasy stories with the guaranteed happy endings, unlike real life where fussy people end up alone.

O is for Overboard [A2Z]

K

Bonus O for this movie being set in Oregon. Now, I love Goldie Hawn… she’s been a fave of mine since forever. Loved her on Laugh-In, and one of the first romcoms I ever saw starred Ms. Hawn. I think it was called Butterflies Are Free. Besides that, she gave the world Kate Hudson, another fabulous actor! (I’ve reviewed two movies starring Kate in this A2Z challenge: Alex & Emma and How to Lose A Guy in 10 Days.)

In Overboard, Goldie is matched with her real-life sweetie Kurt Russell. Goldie plays a spoiled wealthy wife who is mean to hired carpenter Kurt. When she falls off her yacht and gets amnesia, her husband leaves her in the hospital so he can go party, and Kurt scoops her up to take care of his house and kids.

Hijinks ensue! Very fun movie, if a bit crazy. But aren’t they all? Mostly you have to suspend your disbelief altogether for movies, whether romances or thrillers or whatever genre. Just too many insanely ridiculous coincidences, amirite?

N is for Notting [A2Z]

Not gonna lie… I don’t enjoy many of Julia Roberts’ films. Pretty Woman? Meh. Steel Magnolias? Barf. Mystic Pizza? Nah. That one where she took swimming lessons and pretended to drown to escape an abusive monster husband? Eh.

But then we have Notting Hill. What is the difference between Notting Hill and those other movies? I’ll give you a hint and it rhymes with Clue Plant. 🤣🤣🤣

So, there you have it, peeps. Notting Hill: a reason to watch Hugh Grant do his witty, who me gosh I hadn’t realized I was quite this adorable no really would you like a spot of tea or perhaps later oh now is good well then now is good for me too.

/fans self/

M is for Married [A2Z]

Multiple bonus M’s manifest in today’s romantic comedy Married to the Mob. We have the stars Michelle Pfeiffer and Matthew Modine mixing it up with the Mob. Michelle is a Mafia wife married to a macho man who doesn’t believe in monogamy. When he is caught messing around with his boss’s mistress however, macho man is found murdered. That’s when Matthew moves in to solve the crime, and fall for mama Michelle.

It’s all fun and games until someone gets a bullet in the head. And heart.

If anyone has it in for the obnoxious Alec Baldwin, you’ll be happy to watch this flick. Even if not, Michelle P. is fun to see as a gum-snapping brunette.

L is for Lose [A2Z]

Here’s Kate Hudson again (we saw her way back in my first A2Z review for Alex & Emma), this time paired with Matthew McConaughey, in a very cute, very sweet romantic comedy: How to Lose A Guy in 10 Days.

The protagonists are at odds because Andie has committed to write an article about winning and losing a boyfriend in 10 days for the magazine where she works. When she’s out with coworkers they “randomly” choose Benjamin to be her pigeon.

But it’s not random because both are being sabotaged by other forces. Ben thinks he’s entering into a harmless bet, but little does he know…

I really enjoyed this movie. There was a lot of great acting by the side characters also, notably Kathryn Hahn and Bebe Neuwirth.

K is for Katherine [A2Z]

Katherine Heigl in 27 Dresses, that is. This is one of my favorite romantic comedies. It again costars James Marsden, as Kevin here, who we saw a couple letters ago in Enchanted, but this time he’s brilliant and witty, not a bumbling goofball. He’s also gorgeous, but for much of the movie Katherine’s Jane is somehow immune to his charms because she’s obsessed with her boss.

That’s one triangle. Another is that Jane’s sister Tess (great performance by Malin Ackerman) has fallen for Jane’s boss, under false pretenses. A third complication is that Kevin’s boss has given him an assignment of doing an exposé on Jane. There’s a lot going on! I find this film highly enjoyable no matter how many times I watch it.

For a bonus K, Katherine also turns in a cute and funny performance with Seth Rogen in the romcom Knocked Up.