Saturday, March 04, 2006

Block Parties, One Woman Wonders, and Jack Nasty

One of my friends wrote me yesterday to ask me why two movies named Aquamarine and Ultraviolet were opening on the same day. I have no explanation for this releasing decision, although you kinda gotta hope that those tween girls don't get confused and stumble into a violent video game when they really wanted to see Splash Jr..

But the pick of this week's litter is definitely Dave Chappelle's Block Party which has great music and an unusually generous spirit to it. Chappelle is hilarious (no surprise). Mos Def is totally charming. Like the rainbow titles above, Mos is pulling double duty at theaters since 16 Blocks just opened too.

Theater NYC
Last weekend at Joe's Pub Lisa Howard sang and knocked my socks off. If you're in NYC and need some great genre-hopping vocals for a reasonable price, you should be at her Ars Nova concert on Tuesday, March 7th.

Or if you're in a more touristy mode, The Pajama Game, is lots of fun. Kelli O'Hara, the female lead, deserves her applause and Harry Connick Jr shamelessly goes bare-chested for the finale (to screams from the balcony). The real highlight though is an unknown, Megan Lawrence. She plays the drunk secretary Gladys. I attended with ModFab and as the show's best number "Hernando's Hideaway" started he whispered "sell it. sell it!" Lawrence must have heard him because she took off and never came back down again. If tickets weren't $100+ I'd tell you that her number is worth the price of admission alone. Crossing my fingers for a TONY nomination for Ms. Lawrence.

Internet Goodies
If you can't get enough Brokeback, you can now display your love. T-Shirts are on sale with proceeds donated to the Matthew Shepard Foundation. I love the red shirt with "Jack Twist?" on the front and "Jack Nasty!" on the back.

And here's an interesting article about payscales for this year's nominated Oscar Characters. [source: popontherocks]



i'm so jealous of you that you've actually been able to hold one.


adam k. said...

Love the new picture, Nathaniel. The scruffiness suits you (really).

I'd buy a Brokeback T-shirt, but I am poor right now.

non-metaphysical stephen said...

I see on your Best Actress page that you see this year as "almost universally regarded as a "weak year" for a particular category." What do you think of Stephanie Zacharek's comment to the contrary, that this is actually a very strong year for women's performances? Is the problem the roles, or just which roles are getting nominated?


the problem is the roles that are looked at.

my feeling is this: there are ALWAYS in any category, 5 worthy performances. But the Oscar vision is much narrower than just film in general so they miss a lot.

non-metaphysical stephen said...

ah, I see what you're saying -- sounds kinda like Slate's recent article about the yearly travesty in the Costume Design category : for some reason, the designers themselves don't find contemporary design as worthy of consideration as period work....

adam k. said...

It also doesn't help that people like Collette and Weisz were put in supporting, when they would've made fine lead contenders.

Really, I think if they'd just ditched Theron for Allen, the lineup woulda been perfectly respectable (I haven't seen Huffman so I'm not begrudging her as she definitely has her fans... and Knightley, Dench, and Witherspoon were all deserving enough).

The Follow Spot said...

I grew up doing shows with Megan Lawrence from Pajama Game and she is amazing - I hope she gets a nod as well. She was so great in Urinetown as Little Becky, Les Miz as Eponine and she can be seen from time to time on One Life To live. So damn funny and such a voice on her too - Pajama Game didn;t even begin to show her voice - its crazy good