Apart from a few select future films in "Previews, Previews, Previews" (by John Horn, Jan. 13), I've never seen such a list of glut and pretensions, bull and brew ha hacq that is being planned for the escapees of the realities of earthly existence.
Overkill and numb us, please! STUART MILLER Los Angeles It must have been an oversight, but John Horn forgot to mention the release of "The Snotty Little Creeps From Canoga Park High," starring the late Zero Mostel as an aging high school senior who is constantly harassed by fellow classmates. (Morion Classics) DAN BULLA Canoga Park When listing nearly 250 up-and-coming movies, Horn somehow overlooked:
"Charles II"--Sequel to the epic fall of the monarch (Rudy Overgard), portraying his descent from king of Spain to California media-hype figure. Co-stars Cyndi Lauper as a fun-loving Valley wench, and Mel Blanc as the voice of the Calendar Letters Page editor. David Lean directs. (Jay Ward) (May be retitled "Voyage of the Rock Aliens," if title becomes available before release date.) ROBERT BOYLE Sherman Oaks SCATHING KEYES Evelyn Keyes' all-too-infrequent contributions to Calendar are jewels of wit among the witless observations of rockers, starlets and tinsel peddlers ("Keyes to the Town," Jan. 13).
Once in my life, I met the scathing, scintillating Keyes among the tanned and glistening litter of a Hollywood pool party. She invited me to join "the adults" at her table--and, were it possible, I'd still be at her feet today. JAMES H. HANSEN Los Angeles SHAMMY AWARD We, being of sound mind and body, do hereby bequeath all future Grammy and perhaps Oscar nominations to one Pia Zadora.
It's bad enough she "won" a Golden Globe in the past--now we have a Grammy nomination?
Has anyone heard this smash hit single? Er . . . does she even sing? Gee . . . perhaps if we were married to millionaires, we could be just like Pia. . . . On second thought, who would want it? DIANA EGAN, DONNA EGAN NANCY ANNE LARA Burbank A NEW DEGENERATION With reference to acid and punk rock, I believe that it would be appropriate to classify such intellectual vomit as the funeral music of a brain-dead generation.
The raucous decibels generated by the cretinous producers of this degenerate noise serve only to fry whatever remains of their primitive brains and to destroy any remaining vestiges they may possess of humanity, sensitivity, decency and talent.
The full consequences of this tragically coarsening impact on our society can be seen very clearly in the attitudes manifested by many of our youth towards our traditional values respecting family, home and country.
Unfortunately, it has now reached the point where, quite literally, many parents are afraid of their own children. Obviously, there are other factors to be considered, but this activity by its very nature and popularity must rank as a major obstacle to the further development of a humane and responsible society. ROBERT S. COUGHLIN Rancho Palos Verdes WEAPONS OF 'DUNE' David Fox, in his contribution to "Outtakes" (Jan. 13), includes the "Dune" ad in a grouping of movie ads that he feels "prominently feature weapons or the suggestion of them."
I take exception.
Clearly, the ad more suggests a boy shouldering a large beach umbrella. There he stands, looking for just the right spot to plant the thing. In his other hand he holds what can only be a shovel. Not having seen the film, I can only assume he is going to bury that lovely girl next to him up to her neck in the sand.
It all sounds perfectly wonderful, and, from what I hear, a much more enjoyable way of spending the afternoon then sitting in a darkened theater watching "Dune."
PATRICK K. BROGAN San Diego MEAN CATS Dan Sullivan's review of "Cats" disgusted me (" 'Cats' Approaches Purrfection," Jan. 14). The barbs he flung at Kim Criswell were merciless, and judging from the audience's emotionally positive response to her performance, quite inappropriate.
In a magnificent theatrical experience such as "Cats," where there are no "lead" parts, and every performer has an equal role, spearing Criswell, I feel, shows the crippling, negative side of Dan Sullivan, critic.
It is tragic that our society permits media persons such as Sullivan the power to inflict such abuse on brilliant creative efforts.
ALICE McINTOSH Pasadena SYLLABIC MAGIC Do the music critics of The Times aspire to be read aloud rather than merely read?
How else account for the memorable phrase of another year when Daniel Cariaga wrote of a conductor's performance that it was "a well-reasoned and rousing reading"?
Now Martin Bernheimer has dubbed the Takemitsu Piano Concerto "effectively reflective" ("Rattle in Takemitsu, Mahler," Jan. 12).
Oxymoronic overtones aside, these syllabic seductions require utterance if their charm is to be truly felt.
Reflecting on this, it occurs to me that the gaze that Bernheimer casts upon the L.A. musical scene could be often characterized as "cheerily leery."
But who would write or want to say a thing like that? HOWARD WEISEL Los Angeles BAD ENDING Oh, for God's sake, Sheila, you gave away the ending of a movie again ("Risk, Love on 'A Sunday in Country,' " by Sheila Benson, Jan. 11).
Because I was foolish enough to read one of your reviews again, I must now add "A Sunday in the Country" to the list of movies I've already "seen."
Why can't you keep your trap shut and leave something for the viewer to discover? VALERIE MARK Playa del Rey ANTI-THESPIANISM Only your myopic critics could support the tangential insanity of modern painting, the lyrical haminess of the swaggering peacocks of theah -tuh, the strutting and shouting of the banana-peddlers-draped-in-satin of Italian opera.
Dan Sullivan was understandingly nervous ("A Theaterphile Answers a Theaterphobe," Jan. 13) as he scrambled to defend his turf--the forced and overwrought phoniness of the theah -tuh--against David Denby's refreshingly blunt Atlantic Monthly piece of Theaterphobia.
I suspect that there is a silent majority out there who have had enough of all those high-school-level "actors" shouting at each other as if they were standing in some noisy streetcar, heaving their diaphragms up and down while they "project" their put-on diction and mannered hand-wringing to the gulled ticket buyers sitting in the last row of the balcony.
Bon jour hypocrisy. Farewell to the "symbolic" horse of the stage "Equus." I'll take the "real" horses of film, plus holography, three-dimensional video, the computer revolution and the coming age of science and enlightenment. Why else those stacks of equations and Einstein discovering relatives and stuff?
Better to face it, Mr. Sullivan.
JACK CATRAN Sepulveda Sullivan ruminates on theaterphilia on Page 37. UNFAIR SHAKE During the last year, the Los Angeles Times has seemed to find new purpose and direction: a nefarious and widespread campaign to discredit the English author Mr. William Shakespeare.
Under the direction of a shadowy figure known only as "Charles Champlin," the Times has attacked Mr. Shakespeare on every front: spreading rumors about his personal life, belittling his talent and accusing him of plagiarism and theft.
Mr. Champlin has used every imaginable ploy in his plot to blacken Mr. Shakespeare's name, and no man has dared to stand against him, no vice has cried for truth and justice.
However, in Dan Sullivan's article ". . . And to All a Bah Humbug!" (Jan. 6), a brief note on "crackpots" shows the first sign of dissent in the monolithic front presented by The Times. Could this be the "light at the end of the tunnel," or will Sullivan soon be reassigned to cover the shipping schedules at the Port of L.A.?
This reader eagerly awaits further developments. RICHARD SPIRTES Santa Monica ANOTHER CALENDAR SONG (to the tune of "Beat It")
The Sunday paper's full of famines and crimes
But Calendar is fun, and it eases your mind
So read it!
Read it! Read it!
Take it out each week and read it!
Calendar's got it, theater and art
Letters that rip Bob Hilburn apart
Heed it! Heed it!
Read the film advice and heed it!
Save yourself trouble, save yourself dough
Read Sheila Benson, than skip the show
You need it! Need it!
If you're into gossip, you need it!
Who's gonna be the next Meryl Streep?
Who does King Charles look like this week?
Wanna be current? Wanna be chic?
You need it . . . need it . . . need it . . . need it
So read it! Read it!
Nothing at the news rack can beat it!
Calendar's got it, dance, rock and jazz
You can spend hours just reading the ads
So read it!
HOWARD SERBIN Santa Ana