John Waters celebrates Johnny Mathis

Film · Language & ideas · Music
Sixties singer Johnny Mathis‘s name has popped up in surprising ways recently. DJ Josh Kun spun the velvet-voiced crooner’s version of “Kol Nidre” at “Get Down, Moses,” Kun’s Jewish/African-American “listening party.” Then, John Waters, the witty, loquacious, and dapper film director, cited Mathis as one of his key “role models.” It happened at an ALOUD ...

John Waters & Carrie Fisher dish at ALOUD 1

Film · Language & ideas
This just in from Louise Steinman, curator-turned-impresario of the Library Foundation’s ALOUD book talk series. Louise has nailed down what promises to be a wild and wonderful evening of conversation Filmmaker John Waters communes with his interlocutor, Carrie Fisher. Two of show business’s sharpest minds (and fastest tongues!) meet to discuss their role models! John ...

Robert Ryan fan club 2

Film
arts·meme, when she is not kvelling on symphony or ballet, is a fan girl. She has favorite movie actors. The male contingent includes Ralph Fiennes, early Peter Saarsgard, early Tim Roth, and the red-headed Briton, Damien Lewis. But why oh why was the great b-movie guy, Robert Ryan, heavily featured in LACMA’s recent series on the cinematography ...

Pina Bausch films at Dance Camera West

Dance · Film
Kudos to hardworking impresario Lynette Kessler on the launch of the ninth annual installment of Dance Camera West, the month-long series celebrating the best-of-the-best of the filmed dance experience. Here is Dance Camera's West's full schedule. I'm particularly drawn to Lynette's June 12 symposium on German choreographer Pina Bausch, a great force in dance who died ...

Norman Lloyd remembers

Film · Theater
“Music to my ears,” cooed veteran stage and film actor Norman Lloyd in response to the fervent applause that greeted his appearance at Hollywood Heritage’s wonderful “Night at the Barn” lecture series held at the DeMille-Lasky barn. The 95-year-old Lloyd credits his lifelong love of tennis with helping him outlive his former collaborators Orson Welles, ...

Even in 1924 Peter Pan wouldn’t grow up 2

Film
 So come with me, where dreams are born, and time is never planned. Just think of happy things, and your heart will fly on wings, forever, in Never Never Land! — J.M. Barrie I’m very excited to see PETER PAN (1924), the delicious silent film offering of the Los Angeles Conservancy’s annual summer film fest, ...

And the mini Oscar goes to LACMA film

Film
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced today a $12,500 grant in support of LACMA’s film program for 2010-11 season. While this check will hardly float the program, it bears significance and good will on a symbolic level. The Academy is Hollywood, Inc. And so I would like to humbly thank the Academy ...

Go ahead, Clint, make our day

Film
The subject is the long-term funding of LACMA’s film program, which is still not secured. In a February 17 curtain talk with Richard Schickel held in tandem with the museum’s respectful retrospective of his oeuvre, Clint Eastwood said: “I want to thank everyone for coming out here and supporting LACMA. I must confess I wasn’t as familiar ...

Musuraca put the noir into film noir 4

Film
LACMA film curator Ian Birnie has some great stuff coming up this month – a retrospective of the films of Italy-born, New York-raised cameraman Nicholas Musuraca, known for his atmospheric noir cinematography at RKO studios in the 1940s. Says Ian: “Musuraca is the third in my unofficial survey of noir cinematographers; the first was Stanley ...

1927 was a very good year 1

Film
Fritz Lang’s METROPOLIS with 25 minutes of lost footage restored and live accompaniment by Alloy Orchestra: a huge event for cinephiles. It was the penultimate closing-night event of TCM Classic Film Festival. Everyone loved it. Everyone except arts•meme … I found it overwhelming and incomprehensible. What tickled me, however, was watching the acknowledged German masterpiece dating ...