New York (AP) Mike Nichols, one of America’s most celebrated directors, died on Wednesday from cardiac arrest. He was married to ABC’s news anchor Diane Sawyer. The family will hold a private service this week; a memorial will be held at a later date.
Dryly urbane, Mr. Nichols had a gift for communicating with actors and a keen comic timing, which he honed early in his career as half of the popular sketch comedy team Nichols and May. In films like “The Graduate,” “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” and “Carnal Knowledge” and in comedies and dramas on stage, he accomplished what Orson Welles and Elia Kazan but few if any other directors have: achieving popular and artistic success in both film and theater. He was among the most decorated people in the history of show business, one of only a dozen or so to have won an Oscar, a Tony, an Emmy and a Grammy.
What’s not to love about this film? Starring Robin Williams and Nathan Lane the pairing is perfect and the performances are brilliant!
Here’s the plot:
Meet Armand, Albert and their son Val who’s engaged to Barbara Keeley and the rip-roaring evening when their families meet.
Val’s father, Armand, owns The Birdcage, a drag club in South Beach. His domestic partner is Albert, who appears regularly as “Starina”, the show’s star drag queen. Barbara’s father is ultraconservative Republican Senator Kevin Keeley of Stow, Ohio. He is up for reelection and is also co-founder of the “Coalition for Moral Order”.
Fearing the Keeleys reaction if they learn the truth about Val’s parents, Barbara tells her parents that Armand is a cultural attaché to Greece, that Albert is a housewife, and that they divide their time between Greece and Florida; she also changes the family’s last name from Goldman to Coleman to hide their Jewish background.
What could go wrong?
Based on the 1973 stage play by Jean Poiret and the 1978 French-Italian film la Cage aux Folles co-written and directed by Édouard Molinaro; it starred Ugo Tognazzi and Michel Serrault. In Italian, it is known as Il vizietto. An excellent flick definitely worth checking out.
Love the scene with Renaldo teaching Albin to act “straight.” La Cage vs. Birdcage. What do you think?
(Sorry, no subtitles for the trailer but they are available on the DVD)
The Birdcage pays homage but definitely brings its own attitude and flair.
And Hank Azaria as Agador Spartacus is too hilarious!!!!
Prince’s landmark soundtrack and film – Purple Rain turned 30 this week. Prince marked the occasion with a surprise concert at his Paisley Park compound in Minneapolis. For me, it brought back memories of the energy and excitement in the theater on opening day. The movie had all the buzz of a true concert experience. It so rocked I brought my husband back for the midnight showing!
Purple Rain 1984
“Let’s Go Crazy, Let’s Get Nuts, look for the purple banana ’til they put us in the truck.” Let’s Go!!
Okay, you got me, I’m in!
My weekly movie matinee ritual was turned on his head as Prince and the Revolution along with Morris Day and the Time deconstructed and reconstructed the movie musical genre. From the very first cord we were plugged into a musical score that would impact the direction of Pop music.
Prince went on to win the Oscar for Best Music, Original Song Score. And also walked away with a Grammy for Best Album of Instrumental Score written for a Motion Picture.
I’ve gotta talk about Morris Day and the Time. I love Morris Day! Both cool and hilarious. And I can’t leave out my man Jerome (Jerome Benton) ever ready with the car door or a jumbo size mirror. Here’s Morris Day and Jerome’s take on the classic routine “Whose on First?”made famous by the 40’s comedy duo Abbott and Costello.
I wish I could have been at Prince’s Paisley Park for the June 29th celebration! Being a die-hard Prince fan and having attended all his concert tours, I’m sure it was an amazing evening. Also, his very special guest turned out to be his Purple Rain co-star, Apollonia Kotero. (would’ve loved to be a fly on the wall for that reunion:)
Prince graciously posted this audio from his late-night surprise concert with 3rdEye Girl:
Screen, stage legend Ruby Dee’s grace, talent and determination epitomized the significance of art and politics in the progress of our society.
Probably best known for her co-starring role in the film A Raisin in the Sun (1961) she was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for American Gangster (2007) and the recipient of Grammy, Emmy, Obie, Drama Desk, Screen Actors Guild Award and Screen Actors Guild Lifetime Achievement Award. She also received the National Medal of Arts and the Kennedy Center Honors. She was married to actor Ossie Davis until his death in 2005.
Lorraine Hansberry – Playwright “A Raisin in the Sun” which highlights the lives of an African American family in racially segregated Chicago.