Wednesday, March 31, 2010
I think I just had my first experience with Busby Berkeley... And I want more. Gold Diggers of 1933 is pure eye candy!
Still reeling from last night, I decided to turn on some movies I have saved on my DVR while working today. TCM selected Ginger Rogers as the Star of the Month for March, 2010 and therefore they have aired lots of her movies. Who knew she made so many movies that don't involve Fred Astaire? In fact the majority of her movies had nothing to do with dancing. She's FUNNY! Really, really funny. So I have loved watching some comedies she played in - like Stage Door and Bachelor Mother. So today I turned on Gold Diggers of 1933 in which she has a small part. I thought I'd have it on as background noise but it was so good I needed to pay attention and it took me about 6 hours to watch this thing! But that's okay because while I was looking for Ginger, I fell in love with so many others! Dick Powell was fabulous. So were Joan Blondell and Guy Kibbee.
Oh, and did I mention it's sexy too? I was definitely not expecting that. Some of the dresses had these super plunging necklines! And there were little touches here and there... and the fabulous use of women's silhouettes!
Pettin' in the Park was my favorite number in this film. In fact, it's definitely one of my top five musical numbers of all time. It starts off with a couple singing and it keeps growing into a series of incredible sequences. When camera would pan back, and it would keep going and going... I literally had my jaw drop open. It's too hard to explain, and just something you need to experience.
Tuesday, March 30, 2010
After winning our VIP passes last night, my friend and I headed out to enjoy the evening. The passes not only included entry to the screening of Hitchcock's North by Northwest, but special seating and a meet and greet with Eva Marie Saint and Robert Osborne prior to the show. The Music Box Theatre is in a cute area on Southport that has lots of little restaurants, shops and bars. So my friend and I met up for a light sushi dinner at Sushi Mura. We then went across the street to Blue Bayou where the meet and greet event was being held. It was convenient for me since I live and work in the city, but some of the other winners that we met came from much further away and drove for several hours to get here. A set of sisters who won (twins actually) came from southern Illinois which was about four hours away. And another guy came from Detroit! But we were all excited for the event.
Eva Marie Saint was actually the first person I met as soon as I walked in. There were only about twenty of us so it was real easy for us all to mingle and get to talk to everyone. Eva Maria looks GREAT and is super friendly. In fact, she is down right adorable. Her husband Jeffrey Hayden (a well known director in his own right) was there as well. She gracefully asked our names and wrote us each out an autographed photo. Then she posed with me, with my friend, all three of us, with us and her husband, etc. She posed for as many pictures as we wanted and patiently re-took photos and waited for people to do it with their cameras, their phones, etc. There was also a professional event photographer there so I hope we will eventually get to see the pictures somewhere. We chatted with them for about five minutes before someone else came up and I walked further into the room. It was then I heard Robert Osborne's voice.
Now don't get me wrong, I was very happy to meet Eva Marie Saint, but I was really, really looking forward to meeting Robert Osborne. He's the one I spend all my time with afterall... He's the one who is on my television each week. He's the one who gives me all the extra tidbits about the movies I watch. He's the one who interviews all the movie stars in his own special way that is both interesting and funny. So he's the one that I wanted to make sure to talk to. One of the other gals was gushing over him, telling him how she grew up watching him and how special it was for her to meet him. So I didn't want to interrupt her and was just hanging around by the sidelines. But he saw me and graciously came over and introduced himself. I helped take some pictures of them and then he posed for a few pictures with me as well.
We talked about Chicago a bit. They arrived the previous day and spent that day itself doing some exciting things. He mentioned that he spent a few winters and summers previously in Chicago and we both agreed that we prefer even the coldest winters to how awful the hot summers can be. He told me that he was meeting up with Roger Ebert the next day for some special programming they are preparing for in October. I think various film critics will be picking films. Then my time was up and I moved on to talk to some of the staff. I found out they were having dinner at Graham Elliot after the event. I was so jealous that they were going there for dinner because I really want to check out that place.
Update: Ebert tweeted about it today and here is what he said: "Taping TCM segments with Robert Osborne on "The Lady Eve" and "The Sweet Smell of Success." Two absolutely great movies."
I went back to the front and one of the girls was getting some additional pictures with Eva Marie Saint and she mentioned that she was going to send the picture out over twitter at that moment. It was SO cute how Eva Marie acted... she doesn't know alot about twitter so she was asking really cute questions about it. So we will still in the middle of discussing twitter when the staff gathered all the TCM people together for their own photos and they advised us to go across the street because the screening was going to start soon.
Some people were waiting in line outside the Music Box Theatre for two hours before they opened the doors. Seats at this theater are all general admission so people got there extra early to get a good seat. Us lucky winners however had seats saved for us! They were really great seats too... about 10th row back and right in the center of the theater. When the theater was built, talkies were new so it was built with speakers to support those types of movies, but also a pipe organ to support silent films. An organist was playing these amazing songs and it set the mood perfectly! Then Robert Osborne was announced and of course got a standing ovation. He told us all about the upcoming TCM Classic Film Festival in Hollywood and it sounds so amazing! I'm glad I got to partake in this event, but I wish I was also able to go out there for that.
While he was talking Eva Marie Saint walked down the isle. But she wasn't announced and it made a commotion. It ended up being funny too because since she mistakenly entered too early she had to walk back to the back of the theater so she could re-enter at the appropriate time. But eventually she got it right and everyone applauded when she took the stage. Robert and she had a Q&A session. He asked her several things about her career and filming North by Northwest. My favorite was when Robert Osborne asked her about her favorite part about making North by Northwest and she replied that it was jumping into bed with Cary Grant! (She's awesome.) "That story is for another time. For twitter" And of course all us twitter winners loved that! Oh, and then she mentioned that Hitchcock making her into a sexy spy lady was really great too. She commented about having to go back and re-record the "I never make love on an empty stomach" line. "Make love" was the original which got replaced by "discuss". She said something like "See how times have changed... thank God!" After a ten minute chat they took some questions from the audience. Nothing was too exciting but one lady was tacky enough to ask Robert Osborne what he needed to do to get her resume to him for a job. Are you kidding?
We were all excited when the movie started. There is something so amazing about seeing this movie on the big screen. Especially when the theater is packed with old movie buffs. Everyone cheered three times: 1) when Eva Marie Saint's name appeared in the beginning credits, 2) when Alfred Hitchcock showed up on film trying to get on a bus, and 3) when Eva Marie Saint first appeared on film. Its was great. But I saw the movie with different eyes or something. I had no idea how FUNNY it was! Of course I saw it before, but I was laughing with a theater full of people at things I missed when I watched at home alone.
Overall, an amazing night. I am so thankful to TCM for hosting an event like this and coming to Chicago. And also that they are playing with social media and twitter! It's truly a night I won't forget. AND it has me wanting to see more films on the big screen so I'll be keeping my eye open for that. I already bought tickets to a silent movie event the theater has coming up soon...
Oh, and if you are interested, you can see additional pictures I took here.
UPDATE: Here's an interview with Eva Marie Saint about this event.
Monday, March 29, 2010
And just to sprinkle a bit of randomness on the week, I won tickets to the screening of North by Northwest at the Music Box Theater. It part of the TCM Road to Hollywood Tour (which is part of their first TCM Classic Film Festival to be held in Hollywood in April.
Not only do I get to see the movie, but I get special VIP pass to meet Eva Marie Saint, who starred in North by Northwest, and Robert Osbourne, the main TCM host. So excited!
Saturday, March 27, 2010
I am fascinated with Andy Warhol's People Factory that is airing this weekend on Ovation. I saw some "American Masters" on him earlier this year and I feel compelled to keep watching things about him. It's always the same: full of eccentric people acting out at his Silver Factory. But it's also always different and I'm drawn to these people's stories. This one was three hours long but I ate up every minute! I highly recommend it for people interested in art, or specifically the pop art counter-culture.
(video below is supposed to be silent for the first twenty seconds or so...)
Thursday, March 25, 2010
We saw Billy Elliot tonight at the Oriental Theater for my birthday. I loved it! The music isn't really anything I'd want to listen to over and over, like Chicago or Cabaret, but I'd really loved to story and I've love to see it again. The preview shows are running right now, and the cast does need some more practice, but it has a 10-month run here and I highly recommend it.
The video above isn't the Chicago cast. Our "Billy" was Tommy Bachelor.
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Went with my co-workers and a few friends for birthday drinks tonight at Tilted Kilt. This place is basically a Hooters with kilts, but it would be a good place to catch a game because there are a ton of TVs and it's close to my office. When we got there we sat at table which for me sucked because I ended up not being able to visit with everyone unless I kept switching seats. But it was still a fun birthday night!
Full set of pictures are posted here.
Posted by Rachel Rubin at 11:53 PM
Friday, March 05, 2010
Wednesday, March 03, 2010
Just finished The Postmistress. I decided to read this book because Amazon did some promotion where the author of The Help, Kathryn Stockett, recommends this book and the two authors interviewed each other or somthing like that... I loved The Help and this one, taking place during the WWII era, reminded me of another recent favorite, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. And I'm happy that I took the chance on this one because I really enjoyed it.
Out of the "three very different women" the book description specifies, I found the story to focus mostly on one woman, Frankie. But maybe that is because she was my favorite. I loved following her around Europe during the years before the US joined WWII. The descriptions this author provides are so amazing it felt like I was right there with her. This book is definitely one I highly recommend to friends.