Letters to Calendar: Writers on the storm in Santa Monica
Regarding “‘Killer’ Show at Forum” [April 22]: I saw the Doors at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium at about the same time. Jerry Lee Lewis opened for them on that night also. Similarly, he was booed off stage. His parting words to the audience that night were “Y’all can have a heart attack!” Jerry didn’t deserve that kind of treatment. He was doing what he was good at.
I don’t know if Jerry Lee did more than one set with the Doors, but I was there that night and it went down a little different than described. The crowd did not want to hear him, see him, and the clamor got louder. I am sure the response shortened his set.
When he left, I recall he said, “I hope you all have heart attacks.” Morrison defended him, his importance, but I don’t think most of the crowd, the overwhelming majority of the crowd, cared.
I was at that concert and 16 years old. Not only was I at the concert but I watched Jerry Lee Lewis perform his set from in a Forum tunnel with Jim Morrison standing about 5 feet away. What I remember most about that night was that Morrison was totally into Jerry Lee Lewis. He clapped and whistled the whole time. What is interesting to me looking back was Morrison’s appreciation of another great talent.
Remember the movies of 1968
I enjoyed Kenneth Turan’s overview of the films of 1968 [“So Much to Watch,” April 22]. In some ways it was the last full year of the “old Hollywood” as it had existed for 45 years to that point. 1968 was the turning point. And that it would go out with such progressive studio-backed projects as Kubrick’s “2001: A Space Odyssey”; the Beatles’ “Yellow Submarine”; John Cassevetes’ “Faces”; and even Bob Rafelson’s directorial debut “Head” (the now cult-classic Monkees movie co-written by Jack Nicholson), shows what a remarkable time it was — and how much things have changed.
Playing taps for R. Lee Ermey
In the R. Lee Ermey obituary [April 20], how could you maggots have failed to mention his role in “Saving Silverman,” in which he ably mixed it up with some of the best young comic actors in Hollywood? Now, drop and give me 20!
More drama at movie academy
Regarding “Fissures in Film” [April 21: Bill Mechanic’s complaints about the motion picture academy are shared by many but not me. I would respectfully disagree with him on many fronts, the most salient being the following: First, independent films are not small except in budget, which is no measure of quality. Second, in the same vein, popularity is no measure of quality and thus should not come into play when nominating a film and/or its creators. Third, at its very basis, the Oscars’ telecast is a trade show, of interest to the public because of the ubiquity of its product and the cult of celebrity. The viewership numbers should not be a concern or play a large role in nominee selection. Fourth, so-called big films have been rewarded in the past. For the most part, today most big-budget films are aimed at male adolescents both in years and mentality.
I would remind Mr. Mechanic that awards are given for quality. And that quality is usually assessed by professionals within a certain field because those professionals know it when they see it. Anything other than that would devalue the award.
Teens, don’t try this at home
Regarding “My Daughter Wants to Do What?” [April 6]: Is it just me or does the movie “Blockers” hit bottom both figuratively and literally? A scene where the character played by John Cena gets an alcohol enema to accelerate his drunkenness is, in my opinion, just about as low and nasty as a movie maker can get. That method of “ingestion” has the potential to be far more deadly (and quicker) than drinking. If teenagers view this bomb of a movie and experiment with that “technique” — maybe die — will anyone in Hollywood feel remorse? Why were critics so kind?
Support L.A. dance troupes
As it tours widely, the Los Angeles Dance Project represents the city internationally. And yet this company’s recent brilliant performances at the Wallis Annenberg theater were not deemed worthy of review space in The Times. Even critical, reviews can raise the profile of Los Angeles dance and dancers. Local dance groups, however, now receive far less in the way of reviews or profiles than does local theater or music.
As one of the only fully professional dance companies in the area, the Los Angeles Dance Project surely deserves the kind of attention often lavished on visitors. Let’s keep the LADP here and give more recognition as well to the many worthy L.A.-based dance companies.
Paul and Irene Oppenheim
I am a subscriber and supporter of the Glorya Kaufman Dance at the Music Center and a subscriber of The Times since relocating from Brooklyn to Los Angeles in 1960. The Times rarely runs a review of any of the six ballets that comprise the six-season series. And to add insult to your neglect, the most fabulous and unusual performance presented by the Complexions Contemporary in six performances last weekend was completely ignored. But you managed to have a review of the Dance Theater of Harlem, explaining how the company was able to come back financially and had a wonderful performance last Friday night.
This does not excuse the complete neglect of the three performances by the Complexions company last weekend. If you weren’t there to see it for yourself, you really missed something spectacular. And if you were there and couldn’t find the time over the weekend to extol its virtues — you should be ashamed!
Let’s hope you can do a better job when our own treasured company, the ABT, performs “La Bayadere” in July.
Sticking up for Amy Schumer
I did not like some of your prejudiced statements about Amy Schumer in your review of her movie “I Feel Pretty” [“Beauty School,” April 20].
I think Ms. Schumer worked hard to get to where she is today, despite being heavy and despite being a woman in the comedy world that is dominated by men.
Rancho Palos Verdes
A shout-out for Johnny Flynn
Regarding “Banderas Puts His Heart Into Portraying Picasso,” [April 23]: Susan King was a bit understated with her references to last season’s “Genius.” My wife and I found the performance of Johnny Flynn as the young Albert Einstein to be the cementing anchor of the season. Geoffrey Rush is a fine actor and deserves his due, but young Mr. Flynn is the one who captured us and kept us watching.
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