Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Houseboat - Cary Grant, Sophia Loren (1958)

To ease my soul--and my allergies--I downed a grilled cheese sandwich and settled in to watch one of my all-time favorite classics, Houseboat starring Cary Grant and Sophia Loren.
Lihsa's Reviews - Houseboat - Cary Grant, Sophia Loren (1958)

The back story on this is almost as good as the story itself: Cary Grant was deeply in love with Sophia Loren, having ended his marriage to the movie's uncredited screenwriter, Betsy Drake, to be with her. Then, before filming even began, Sophia ended it all to marry Carlo Ponti (he latered produced Dr. Zhivago).

And everyone thinks that Angelina Jolie was the original bad girl.

The movie, Houseboat, tries to sell itself as a frivolous romantic romp. But it is actually quite touching, addressing morality, parenting and family.

Newly widowed Tom Winters (Cary Grant) decides to take custody of his children, despite offers from his former wife's parents and sister. Abandoning the offer to stay in the country guest house, Tom returns to Washington DC with his 3 children, David (Paul Peterson), Elizabeth (Mimi Gibson) and Robert (Charles Herbert). 

Crammed into his a tiny bed-sleep in downtown DC, he is hard pressed to bring the youngest, Robert, around, who ends up running away. 

Meanwhile, Cinzia (Sophia Loren) is traveling with her father, who is guest conducting through the US. Tired of being trapped with him, she ducks out the window and just happens to find a stow-away, the young Robert. 

Cinzia and Robert strike up a friendship and as a result, little Robert insists that Cinzia becomes their housekeeper.

SPOILER: Sophia Loren's wedding dress is simply gorgeous!



Tuesday, April 7, 2015

INSTAGRAM STAR: @DavePollotArt - Star Wars, Super Mario, Vintage art mash-up

A photo posted by Dave Pollot Art (@davepollotart) on

I started following this guy a few months ago--and this is the post that got me going--I loved the juxtaposition of "trite and true" vintage art alongside current cultural references.

He inserts characters, images and references from Star Wars, Super Mario, Ghostbusters and more.

If you're a nerd, a geek, junker and art lover, this 'Grammer's for you!

Monday, April 6, 2015

Walken with the dead: Undertaking Betty - Alfred Molina, Brenda Blethyn (2002)

Lihsa's Reviews - Undertaking Betty
This farcical romance, Undertaking Betty, pairs dueling  mortuaries and philandering politicians to create a one-of-a-kind Welsh comedy.

Undertaking Betty has an all-star cast including Alfred Molina (Spiderman 2), Brenda Biethyn (Vera, Atonement), Christopher Walken (Hairspray, Pulp Fiction) and Naomi Watts (Mulholland Dr., The Ring).

Boris Plots (Molina) has been harbouring a 30-year crush on Betty (Biethyn), dashed when she chose to dance with Hugh (Pugh).

Thirty years later, Hugh is married to the blissfully unaware Betty but is catting around with his secretary (Watts).

And instead of Boris following his dreams to become a ballroom dancer, he ends up taking over his father's mortuary.

So begins this silly film. It is worth a couple of hours to see Christopher Walken in one of his sillier performances. His hair alone could be a character.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Stuck in your head kind of tunes, courtesy of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt


Apparently, I'm not the only one with the theme song of "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" stuck in my head. The LA Times wrote an entire article about the show's catchy tunes.

If you want to banish it, try listening to the show's Madonna-esque "Peenot Noir".

But it may just be a matter of jumping from the the frying pan into the fire.