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Showing posts from June, 2012


Wise Words from Jane Fonda

I happened to catch last night's entertaining episode of Kathy, and the veteran actress-activist slipped in this nugget of a quote while sitting on the guest couch with Lisa Ling and Sharon Osbourne. Needless to say, it stuck with me.


'Adventures in Babysitting': 25 Years Later

That running Playboy gag. The one-handed tow truck driver. The L train standoff with the Lords of Hell. And Thor...

25 years ago this summer, a high school senior named Chris Parker (the girlfriend everyone wanted to have, Elisabeth Shue) loaded up her mom's station wagon with a trio of youngsters and headed into downtown Chicago to rescue her BFF Brenda from the big, bad, and scary riffraff of the inner city. Adventures in Babysitting opened in theaters during the 4th of July weekend of 1987, going up against heavyhitters like Spaceballs, Innerspace, and Beverly Hills Cop II.

I wasn't introduced to the film until one day in 1990 when my mom and I made our monthly excursion to Blockbuster Video (*Kids, that was a store people drove to in order to rent VHS cassette tapes of movies -- when you were done with them, you had "be kind and rewind" the tapes and drive back to the store to return them) I watched the movie repeatedly while we had it in our possession. When m…


A Perfect 10

On June 27, 2002, yours truly landed at LAX with two giant suitcases, a Jansport backpack, a pair of wide eyes, and a curious case of naive ambition.

From a lowly production assistant who had to rely on a Thomas Guide map to maneuver himself through the boulevards of a new city...to a coffeeshop-hopping, funemployed freelancer who's always on the lookout for the next creative gig, I have become somewhat jaded after wearing several different hats over the past decade (In my best Ed Asner voice: Back in my day, we e-mailed AND faxed resumes. There was none of that social networking business). But one thing that hasn't changed is the ambition I carried with me when I departed New York's LaGuardia Airport on that fateful summer day. I proudly chose to live in a city where ambition is embedded in people's DNA. It's their oxygen. I also chose to live in a city where genuine talent is usually sideswiped by shallow trends and distracting gloss, making it all the more diff…


Fifty Shades of 'Magic Mike'

Random Thought of the Week:

If Fifty Shades of Grey is inspiring women to spice things up in the bedroom, could men pick up a few tips from Magic Mike this weekend?

Note to boyfriends and husbands: you may want to invest in some tear-away pants.


My First Cover Story

Bello's Summer Fashion Issue hits the App Newsstand on iTunes this Tuesday, and it just so happens that my interview piece with Brandon Routh (you can catch the former Superman in the CBS comedy, Partners, this fall) made it to the cover.

And while you're at it, please check out my interview with Ryan Guzman. The Step Up Revolution actor covers the entertainment section, where you'll also find other goodies of mine ("Melrose Place Turns 20," "10 Fashionable Film Favorites," etc).

Danke.

H.P.M.


My Two Cents on HBO's 'Girls'

Updated: 1/14/13

Those who have ignorantly labeled or dismissed Lena Dunham's polarizing comedy about twentysomething white chicks living in New York City as a GenY Sex and the City should be pitied for their lack of open-mindedness and the huge sticks they have up their asses. Because they apparently haven't scraped away the surface to see that underneath the woe-is-me sensibility is an acutely observed (and uncomfortable) portrait of post-collegiate life, packed with embarrassing mistakes and complaints we've all been guilty of making but never wanted to admit...or remember.

Many comedies and dramas have attempted to paint the Twentysomething Experience with no real resonance, accuracy, or success. What this show has that others didn't is a creator at its helm who's actually living it in real time (note: writer-director-star Dunham is 25) as well as a female lead who actually looks like she's torn through an occasional pint of Ben & Jerry's.

Now put t…


My Interview With Woody Allen

I recently attended a press conference at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel for the iconic director's latest film, To Rome With Love (honestly, it's not quite as magical as last year's Midnight in Paris, but it's a charming travelogue). 
And what he had to say was quite astonishing...and revelatory (hint: Annie Hall is a huge disappointment for him). What I also found out: Penelope Cruz is stunning in person, and Alison Pill is a hoot (she had me at "pet pig")...
Check it out over at Hotter in Hollywood.


Hey, If They Can Bring 'Dallas' Back...

And yes, there may be some wishing thinking on my part in terms of casting.


9 Reasons Why 2012 Feels Like 1997

(*Updated 8/12/12) I'm all for pop culture going retro every now and again, and since we're halfway through 2012, I'm quite amused by how everything is starting to feel very...15 years ago:

1. No Doubt is scheduled to release their new album, Push and Shove, on September 25. The first single, "Settle Down" drops July 16.

2. Matchbox Twenty is also releasing new music. "She's So Mean," the lead single from their forthcoming album, has already leaked across the interwebs.


3. There's a movie currently in theaters starring Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones about secret government agents who capture evil extraterrestrials. They're called the Men in Black. Ever hear of 'em?
4. Ricki Lake is returning to TV this fall with a brand new talk show (I should start practicing my "Go Ricki" chant):


5. John Travolta is making headlines.

6. Fiona Apple just debuted a music video everyone is talking about.

7.Titanic made a splash at the box office (in …

'Melrose Place' Turns 20

On July 8, 1992 a young woman named Natalie ran out of a West Hollywood apartment complex in the middle of the night -- suitcase in hand -- leaving behind roommate Alison Parker without enough money for rent...

And so began the convoluted chronicles of several twentysomethings who resided at a Los Angeles address that would soon become one of the most popular destinations in primetime television.

During that summer, I was a 12-year-old bookworm who had nothing else better to do than stick my nose in paperback novels and rent movies from Blockbuster Video. All I knew was that MP was a sexier spin-off of the hugely successful Beverly Hills, 90210 (remember when Kelly hooked up with older handyman Jake before her mom's wedding?) and featured older characters, which I preferred. (I wasn’t your average pre-teen; while my peers obsessed over the latter, I found entertainment in more adult fare like Knots Landing and Picket Fences.)

Melrose was unlike most dramas in terms of its producti…


Summerlover: The 2012 Summer Playlist - Vol. 2

You know how Aliens is arguably better than Alien, and T2 totally kicks the original Terminator's ass? Well, that's how I'm feeling about Volume 2 of my little Best Summer Ever series. Who knew the music gods would bestow us with so much music for swimsuit season? The following playlist is just bursting at the seams with enough melodies, beats, and rhythms to make you feel like a schoolboy (or girl) ready for summer vacation all over again...
1. "Cuckoo" by Adam Lambert
2. "Give Your Heart a Break" by Demi Lovato -- Can we please retire "Call Me Maybe" and finally start obsessing over this? I know I have. See and hear for yourself:



3. "Take It All Away" by Owl City -- Five words I thought I'd never write: Easy, breezy, beautiful Owl City.

4. "Sovereign Light Cafe" by Keane -- The boys continue to impress with their latest album. This time, they're firing up the nostalgia machine and going back to their roots with …


Dear Generation Y...

That is all.

H.P.M.


Theme Song of the Month: June 2012

Upon discovering Madeon (real name: Hugo Pierre Leclerecq) over the Memorial Day weekend, I found myself blaring "Icarus" in the car with the windows rolled down (the Radio Edit, that is). It is just one of the many jams I'm sure I'll associate with barbecues, poolside cocktails, and sunscreen.

If this is the first time you're hearing about this French electronica artist-DJ, then by all means, check out the below teaser. And then proceed to his YouTube page to experience the kickass remixes he's done for bands like Alphabeat and Pendulum. And did I mention the dude just turned 18?

Clearly under the influence of greats like Daft Punk and Justice, Madeon is quickly carving out a place for himself in the dance world. As a matter of fact, a music video director friend of mine, Justin Purser (check out his work with Eva Simons here), recently reported to me that the electronic wunderkind spun in Vegas over the holiday weekend (when he was still considered underag…