3 items from 2014
Polly Bergen: Actress on Richard Nixon's 'enemies list' (image: Polly Bergen publicity shot ca. late 1950s) (See previous article: "Polly Bergen Movies: First U.S. Woman President.") As discussed in the previous post, despite its deceptively progressive premise — the first United States woman president as a palpable reality — Kisses for My President, written by veteran Paramount screenwriter Claude Binyon (Search for Beauty, The Gilded Lily) and newcomer Robert G. Kane (whose sole other movie credit was the poorly received Arnold Schwarzenegger comedy Western Villain), was an unabashedly reactionary, "traditional family values" effort. Ironically, Polly Bergen, for her part, was a liberal-minded, politically active Democrat. At around the time Kisses for My President was released, Bergen, along with Gregory Peck, James Garner, and other Hollywood personalities, publicly came out against California's Proposition 14, a 1964 ballot initiative that would have nullified the Rumford Fair Housing Act, thus paving the way for »
- Andre Soares
Broadway’s most exhilarating rock concert burst onto the boards earlier this year when Neil Patrick Harris stepped into the silky fishnets of Hedwig and the Angry Inch, earning a Tony for the role and ushering the East German rocker into the hands of a new generation of fans. After Harris departed the show in August, The Book of Mormon veteran Andrew Rannells was tapped to fill Hedwig’s high heels. To say his turn is electric, heartbreaking, and wholly different from Harris’ would still be underselling the performance.
- Marc Snetiker
A mainstay of worst-sequels-ever-made lists, squirming alongside the likes of Batman & Robin, Speed 2 and Exorcist II: The Heretic, Grease 2 was roundly lambasted upon its 1982 release and its critical reputation has nose-dived ever since. Here's a film that cost $11.2m to make (£6.7m) - almost twice the budget of its much-loved, popular culture-bothering forerunner - and yet failed to secure the return of its two stars, John Travolta and Olivier Newton-John, or its composers, Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey.
It entered its 58-day shoot working from an unfinished script, with Didi Conn (reappearing as Frenchy, though she vanishes halfway through the movie) calling the production "rushed, frantic and unorganised". Its stars Michelle Pfeiffer and Maxwell Caulfield failed to get along, Pfeiffer later labelling her on-screen lover as "self-adoring". It turned away a young Tom Cruise for the role of T-Birds leader Johnny Nogerelli, instead plumping for the strikingly uncharismatic Adrian Zmed. »
3 items from 2014
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