Battle of the Sexes & Harassment.

Today I went to see “Battle of the Sexes” and it was great. I love Emma Stone so much.

Unfortunately, although I’d bought a ticket for a seat with no one around it in a theatre that was 2/3’s empty, as the lights dimmed, a disheveled looking male slid into the row and sat next to me. I thought it was weird but whatever, I stayed in my seat. I could see out of the corner of my eye that he kept looking over at me, leaned over to the armrest accompanying my seat once or twice, said something under his breath, and even rubbed his foot up against my leg at one point. I was hugging the opposite side of my seat. Hoping he’d move, or take the hint, or leave? 

I wasn’t sure if all this was in my head or done purposely, so I decided not to take any chances and I got up and started to exit the theatre as soon as the screen went dark so I could be first out the door when the postshow text of ‘where are they now’ finished. I was walking to the back of the theatre and about 10 seconds after I got up, I sensed someone walking behind me. I turned around and it was this person. I stood at the back of the theatre and glared at him until he exited.

I was looking over my shoulder and all around as I left the theatre 5 minutes later. I’m pretty sure I saw him looking at me as he rode away on his bike when I exited, going the opposite way luckily. So, ladies – anyone – anytime you feel uncomfortable next to some dude at the movies, it’s always better to possibly offend a random stranger you’ll never see again by moving instead of subjecting yourself to that. This was especially ironic given that I was at a movie called “Battle of the Sexes.”

Male population: please stop saying you’re not entitled. Not all of you are entitled, perhaps, but you need to stand up and be a feminist when this shit happens.

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The 74th Anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising

Today, April 19th, is the anniversary of the beginning of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising during World War II. There is a fantastic museum in Warsaw dedicated to this uprising and it’s a Must See if you’re in Warsaw. I found out yesterday that there’s a memorial to this uprising in Riverside Park at 83rd Street. I’m going to go pay my respects before work. If you feel like watching The Zookeeper’s Wife or The Pianist. There’s a movie about the Jewish Uprising but I can’t remember the name (comment if you remember it! It’s the street address of the secret meeting place!) Here are a few photos from the museum.

The original mermaid that stood in the Old Town before the Germans bombed them as punishment for the uprising.

They used the sewers to get around and deliver messages and weapons. This is what you’d see under a safe exit.

The symbol of the uprising.

The flags of the uprising.

And around the city you’ll see several monuments dedicated to those who fought:

The Littler Uprising Monument – dedicated to all the children who helped sneak past guards with messages and weapons. 

The Warsaw Uprising Monument

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Groundhog Day, in Previews

And Rewind.

Last weekend I won the digital lottery for the new Broadway musical, Groundhog Day, and J and I went. He liked most of what he’d seen of the movie and I wanted him to see Andy Karl onstage since we’d watched him on Law & Order semi-recently. This is a transfer from London and they know how to make a pretty good musical, so my expectations were decent.

The music is catchy and the lyrics are feisty in a way that only Tim Minchin can be and I enjoyed the first 15 minutes. Then the day restarted and I suddenly, “Oh my god, is this the entire musical? How does it ever proceed forward from this one day? What have I gotten myself in to?!”

To be clear: I’ve never seen the movie before and I only knew vaguely what the premise was. This was my fault completely.

BUT. They do a fantastic job of rewinding the day each time and it doesn’t feel monotonous at all. The set worked perfectly (no first preview difficulties luckily) and it really keeps the show moving along. Without those turntables, the show would be 4 hours long. A couple of the songs get dark a darkly comedic way, and a couple of the songs could be completely cut (the first song of the second act, for starters).

Andy Karl plays this role perfectly. We feel his angst at his situation which eventually turns to morbid joy, which turns out to be hilarious. Barrett Doss, his costar, is lovely, too. I think Raymond Lee, as one of the town yokles at the bar, was the only other cast member to really stand out. He’s hilarious.

It was about 2 hours and 45 minutes long, which is long, but it never dragged. Like I said, they do a really good job at keeping the pace pretty consistent. We both walked out of the theatre having really enjoyed ourselves.

It was definitely not a wasted night at the theatre and I wouldn’t have been too sad to have been forced to relive it at least one more time.

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Get Out (SSS 09)

Last Friday, Justin and I went to see Get Out, the new Jordan Peele horror/thriller movie. It was AWESOME. It’s a horror movie, but really more of a thriller. There’s not a lot of gore (there’s none, really). It’s just a mindfuck from beginning to the end. 

Anyways, I won’t say much about the movie because you should see it yourself, I stumbled across this podcast from the inners of a Reddit thread that Justin sent me about a plot point in Get Out this morning and was blown away at their critique and the little nuances they noticed.

I will not lie and say that I’m good at picking up on movie nuances because I fucking suck at it. So, when I listened to this podcast, Saw Something Scary by two gentlemen from Tennessee, I was floored by all the tiny things they picked up on. I tweeted at them afterwards and the one that responded seemed super cool, so that was neat.

I listened to their podcast about Rings afterwards, which they called (and I’d 100% agree) a “hot pile of garbage” and “a dumpster fire.” It was entertaining because that movie was an unnecessary waste of time and effort. 

As we speak, I’m falling down the Get Out article rabbit hole and listening to the Nerdist podcast interview with Jordan Peele. I’ll see you in about 3 days when I pull myself out! Until then, if you haven’t seen Get Out, GO!

Get Out (SSS 09)

2016 in Numbers

I’m late in doing this but here goes. 

10 Movies: LaLa Land, Star Wars: Rogue One, Arrival, The Girl on the Train, The Purge: Election Year, Independence Day: Resurgence, Captain America: Civil War, 10 Cloverfield Lane, Macbeth, The Big Short

20 Books: The One and Only (Emily Giffin), Griftopia (Matt Taibbi), Revenge Wears Prada (Lauren Weisberger), On Writing Well (William Zinsser), American Psycho (Bret Easton Ellis), Your Brain At Work (David Rock), The Woman I Wanted to Be (Diane von Furstenberg), Wherever You Go, There You Are (Jon Kabat-Zinn), The Nest (Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney), The Girls (Emma Cline), The Universe Has Your Back (Gabrielle Bernstein), The Couple Next Door (Shari Lapena), First Comes Love (Emily Giffin), Good As Gone (Amy Gentry), Behold the Dreamers (Imbolo Mbue), The Confidence Effect (Grace Killelea), The Woman in Cabin 10 (Ruth Ware), The Joy of Less (Francine Jay), Night (Elie Wiesel), Born For This (Chris Guillebeau)

29 Shows: The Encounter (2x), The Illusionists, The Cherry Orchard, Heisenberg, Beautiful, An American in Paris, American Psycho (2x), Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Waitress, The Color Purple, Blackbird, School of Rock, Eclipsed, Our Mother’s Brief Affair, Noises Off, Snow White, Marie and Rosetta, Small Mouth Sounds, Oh Hello, She Loves Me, Avenue Q, Tuck Everlasting, The Woodsman, Vietgone, Seen By Everyone, Fiddler on the Roof, The Crucible (There are probably a couple that I’m forgetting.)

I need to see more theatre this year. 

Post-Holiday Hangover

Happy post-holiday hangover! The holidays were pretty easy this year. My parents hosted Christmas Eve so I didn’t have to move much. My mom’s side of the family (my dad’s side doesn’t come because they live in Maine and they’re Jewish, duh) is SO LOUD. I had to retreat to my room at one point to meditate and decompress because it was so goddamn loud. I had a lot of fun playing with my parent’s kitten, though. She’s so energetic! 

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Though my mom might be Catholic, we still pretty much celebrate Christmas like Jews. We have the morning presents and relaxing and then go to the movies and out to eat Chinese food. We ended up seeing La La Land which was So So Painfully Bad. Apologies to Pasek and Paul, but the music wasn’t memorable and the storyline, though not their fault, was horrifically cliche. The opening number really had nothing to do with anything and was so terribly awkward I wanted to shrink down in my seat and die.

I traveled back to the city with my mom on Monday and J and I met my friend Elliot and his girlfriend to see the [random] matinee of The Encounter, which was again a wonderful experience and all enjoyed it. Today I am getting back to yoga at my studio and trying to finish up a quick book. I’m allowing myself to eat and drink whatever I want this week, within reason, until New Year’s Day. Because… new year, new start? Then I’m reigning it in. Back to not drinking more than one day a week and cooking. 

And I’ll be entering lots of ticket lotteries this week with my partner in crime, @endotique. Who never posts on Tumblr anymore and really should, right guys? 

Here’s to a week of freedom before new beginnings. 

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Pre-Thanksgiving Fun @ The Cherry Orchard 

I couldn’t think of a more appropriate play to take in before the Thanksgiving holiday than The Cherry Orchard by Anton Chekhov. I knew it was be pretty dry, but the cast sounded too great to pass up. I showed up to the American Airlines Theatre last Wednesday around 2pm and took my seat in the last row of the orchestra. 

I read the description in the Playbill, and the breakdown of the family members, so I had some idea of what I was getting into (tl;dr: A Russian family is going broke and losing the estate that they’ve lived on for generations). Sadly, Joel Grey was out that day, but I was still really excited to see Diane Keaton, as well as Tavi Gevison and Celia Keenan-Bolger. Oh, and Chuck Cooper, too. 

The script was as dry and depressing as expected. The sets and lighting were lovely and mesmerizing. The performances were stellar. I can’t decide whether Keaton was great or overacting, because her character is a little delusional and crazy (think: a Russian Blanche duBois) so it was hard to tell. I still enjoyed watching her regardless. Keenan-Bolger and Gevinson were more compelling, though that might be because their characters were just more interesting to me. Then there was Chuck Cooper. who played a Russian businessman who knows the family. I love him in any and everything and he can do no wrong. Philip Kerr, who was on for Joel Grey, was whimsical with great comedic timing. Honestly, I can’t figure out why Grey would take a small, supporting role, but as great as he may be, I enjoyed Kerr a lot. 

Roundabout has put on a stunning production with a stellar cast of a slightly boring Chekhov play. But hey, I knew what I was getting myself into when I took my seat. If you love this kind of play, this is a great production to see. 

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Film Review: The Book Next Door (or: Broadway SpottedKristen Chenoweth Shows Up in a Pixie Cut)

The weather has been kind of shit in New York this week – meaning my favorite kind of shit because aside from my laziness after work or yoga, it’s a lovely “excuse” to stay in and do nothing. And watch shitty movies on HBOGo! Last night’s shitty movie was The Boy Next Door, another infamously shitty JLo movie. (The most epically shitty and epically-amazing-because-of-how-shitty-it-is will always be Enough.)

The film was shit – totally flawed eye-rolling film filth. There’s no reason why anyone should ever watch this. Ever. (Promise me you won’t, okay?) It’s 90 minutes of cliche lines and an unbelievable bullshit plot that would probably never in a hundred years happen. #escapism 

But who is JLo’s co-star? Kristin Chenoweth! I had absolutely no idea she was in this and I bet she wishes she hadn’t been (unless she just had to pay her mortgage, then whatever, I get it). She plays the principal of the school that JLo teachers literature and she also happens to be her bff. She also happens to have a horrendous pixie cut. Who put her in that awful wig? Spoiler alert: KChen dies and her dead body falls JLo when she arrives and starts looking for her bff. 

Sidenote: Luckily though, her adorable cat, who is really in the movie for no reason at all other than to perpetuate the theme of Unmarried Cat Lady, goes unharmed. The cat is also in the room when KChen is tied up and screaming. Give me a break. That cat, any cat, would’ve been out of there so fucking fast. This is probably the most unbelievable part of the movie.

Conclusion: Unless you want to see Kristin Chenoweth say shitty lines in a pixie cut, never watch this movie. Ever.

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An American In Paris

I had totally regretted signing on to help out, and in return watch, An American in Paris last weekend. It was a show that I still hadn’t seen and I was like OK. Then when I thought about it, I was all, “A 2.5 hour show on a Saturday afternoon? Kill me.” But I didn’t want to bail so I went. I was pleased when the exposition was set and it was a story that was semi-interesting to me. An American soldier who chooses to stay behind in Paris after world war 2? Sign me up.

I’m not the biggest fan of Gershwin music but it’s familiar and not the worst. I thought they weaved the songs together in a way that worked to move the story along and I thought a lot of the choreography was beautiful. The story didn’t have a fairytale ending which was fine with me, probably even preferable (though sad because of how we have all been conditioned to expect it). I enjoyed it as much as I could but truth be told, it was a little long. An hour and forty five minutes would’ve sufficed.

I was excited to see Max Von Essen because I grew up watching him in benefits and smaller shows and he didn’t disappoint. He was lovely. The lead, Leanne Cope, reminded me of Cristin Milioti in Once but if she could also dance. Dimitri Kleioris as the American, Jerry, was excellent, too. The rest of the cast was uniformly talented and easy to watch, and listen to.

This wouldn’t be the first, or fifth, show I’d recommend to someone but it was entertaining to say the least.

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Welcome to Earth.

This line isn’t actually in the movie, it’s from the first one. I love Independence Day, the original, more than words can express. Jeff Goldblum is the man and Bill Pullman is pretty fucking fantastic. I knew the sequel, which was totally unnecessary to make, would be lackluster but Goldblum was in it, so I had to go. J wanted to see it in 3D, so we shelled out $40 and saw it on Saturday night.

“This is the worst movie I’ve ever seen,” is what he said as we were about halfway through. Whatever, man. 

Okay, so it WAS totally ridiculous, but it was an amazing disaster movie. The mothership (the one carrying the Queen) was the size of a hemisphere, not just the size of a city. The Queen alien herself was about 10 stories tall and all of the aliens can use guns now. The aliens are over exterminating planets and they’re all about stealing molter cores from other planets to use on their own. A huge space ball comes to our space station on the moon to try to warn us, but of course, we’re afraid of anything unfamiliar, so we shoot it down. 

The destruction is 100x’s worse this time around. But aside from that, Will Smith’s character’s son is now a star fighter pilot and Gale (aka Thor’s brother aka Liam Hemsworth) is in cahoots with him (he’s also a fighter pilot), and he’s in a relationship with President Whitmore’s (Bill Pullman) daughter, Patricia, who’s now in her 20′s. 

That was all nostalgic and great. I really loved it for that aspect. I wondered though, what happened to the crazy drunk’s kids from the first movie? We’ll never know as they’re not in this movie.

i hear this is going to tank this weekend and that’s sad. But the writing is just so bad, it’s like they weren’t even trying. 

Despite that it was a 10 on the cheesiness scale, I enjoyed it. If you have nostalgia for the original, go see this one and bring your low expectations with you. Because: Jeff Goldblum.