Category Archives: Hollywood

2016 Oscars Red Carpet

At the 88th Academy Awards, Chris Rock diffused the diversity controversy that hung over the Dolby Theater with his raw yet dexterous brand of comedy, acknowledging a need for change within Hollywood while keeping the show on track. It’s been so long since an Oscar host was actually entertaining, I had forgotten these things used to sometimes  be funny.  Not everything was comedic gold, I still can’t figure out the point of the Girl Scout bit.  Girl Scout cookies sell themselves because they are delicious and somewhat deceptively named.  Thin Mints for example give you the false impression you can swallow sleeves of cookies whole like a boa constrictor without worrying about your waistline while Tagalongs and Do-si-dos practically sound like you’re getting some kind of calorie-cancelling exercise simply by eating them.

Amusingly, the plan to omit thank yous from the acceptance speeches and scroll pre-prepared lists of names instead didn’t pan out amongst those who take direction for a living.  Not exactly a shocker.  If I ever won an Academy Award, guidelines and music wouldn’t get me off the stage, it would probably take some kind of zoo-tranquilizer dart and even then, I wouldn’t go without a fight.

But the Oscars are so much more than a platform for social change or awarding  the best in film, they’re about attractive people wearing fabulous designer clothing.  Watching the Oscars is all about focusing on the most superficial aspects of people who are part of the most shallow industry on Earth.  It’s all about the fashion.

This year was a little more interesting than the past few years.  The best and worst weren’t quite so cut and dry with many  critics divided over who led  the pack and whose fashion failed.

These are my picks:

The Best

Cate Blanchett was ethereal perfection in seafoam Armani Prive.  In the wrong hands, this  dress could look like a glue gun disaster, but with Tiffany & Co. cascading diamond earrings, sea creature bracelet and beachy bob, Cate had that just-stepped-out-of-the-waves-like-this goddess quality.  This dress made both best and worst dressed lists.  On anyone but Cate Blanchett, I would have categorized it as the latter.  On her, it was both regal and whimsical.

cateblanchett

Another red carpet masterpiece in motion was Saoirse Ronan in Calvin Klein.  The actress chose emerald to honor her Irish heritage, however the swirling sequins of the skirt were evocative of the sky’s nocturnal undulations in Dutch post-Impressionist painter, Vincent van Gogh’s The Starry Night.  While the brightest “star” in van Gogh’s painting is actually Venus, Saoirse Ronan’s luminous beauty made her one of the brightest stars on the Oscar red carpet.
SaoirseRonan

EmeraldCalvinKlein

The black Chanel dress Julianne Moore wore was a departure from the jewel tones she normally gravitates towards, making it a noteworthy selection.  Recently, a similar version made its way down the Chanel runway on Kendall Jenner.  Julianne opted for meticulously crafted effortless glamour, wearing her hair down instead of in angry Princess Leia buns with Black Swan eye makeup shown at the Chanel Haute Couture show.

JulianneMoore

Once again Charlize Theron’s red carpet appearance reminded us that no matter how hard we try, we’ll never be Charlize Theron.  Charlize may have terrible taste in men, but her fashion sense is impeccable.  Draped in Christian Dior Couture and Harry Winston diamonds, Charlize continued her reign as the Red Carpet’s best dressed.

CharlizeTheron

Honorable Mention

Mindy Kaling’s Elizabeth Kennedy dress was a little too tight, causing it to pucker, but between its black and royal blue color scheme and cape-like tie in the  back, it reminded me of the superhero costume worn by Batman’s former sidekick, Nightwing, thus making the dress subjectively awesome.

MindyKaling

Leather and Lace

Two of the trends on the red carpet were the sartorial version of the Stevie Nicks/Don Henley duet, Leather and Lace.

Jennifer Lawrence’s black tiered Dior gown was one of the lace trend’s best examples,  a modern take on the black lace and ruffles favored by Stevie Nicks who paved the way for goth girls who want to keep their hair blonde.

jenniferlawrence

Rooney Mara also wore lace.  The cut-out sheer dress  by Givenchy Haute Couture was a cometh hither combination of demure and provocative, however the sci-fi hair and white platform sandals detracted from the dress.

rooneymara

Versace-clad Kerry Washington looked like she was wearing Xena’s prom dress: ass-kicking leather on top, glamorous femininity on the bottom.

kerrywashington

Margot Robbie glittered like a gold dust woman in a long-sleeve gold leather embellished Tom Ford gown.  In 85 degree heat.  I’m really not sure how she wasn’t glistening buckets.

MargotRobbie

The Worst

This year’s Oscars refuted my long-held belief that Kate Winslet would look gorgeous even in a garbage bag.  Making a rare sartorial misstep, Kate’s Ralph Lauren gown was evocative of a Hefty Cinch Sak.  Draw me like one of your tall kitchen bags.

katewinslet

Another fashion disappointment was Olivia Wilde who, like Kate Winslet, usually nails the red carpet.  I wanted to like Olivia Wilde’s Valentino dress, but ultimately I couldn’t shake the fact that it looked like Mature Bride’s take on Leeloo’s bandage outfit.

oliviawilde

I can’t even take Amy Poehler’s Andrew Gn dress seriously, she looks like she’s being eaten alive by Audrey Jr. flesh-eating embroidery.  A stylist supposedly did this to her on purpose, why I do not know, but humanity may need to call on Lucy Liu’s badassery.

AmyPoehler

This year Marchesa happened to Heidi Klum.  The dress looked like a failed practice assignment using canopy curtains and shoddy magic at Fairy Godmother Conjuring School.  The dress Cinderella’s rodent friends made her looked better than this Marchesa dress even after it was destroyed.  Not only is this a lock for this year’s Worst Dressed award, it’s epically hideous, likely to show up on Most Tragic Oscar Fashion lists for years to come.

heidiklum

redheart

signature copy

 

 

2015 Oscars Red Carpet

The 2015 Oscar’s Red Carpet was a veritable who’s who and what’s that of fashion.  With the recently starlet-snubbed E! Mani Cam banished officially because of “space constraints” amid sexism controversy, Oscar hopefuls and presenters seemed to take back more creative control of their fashion as well.  A marked departure from last year’s overly contrived un-styled looks masterminded by megalomaniacal stylists, the red carpet this year was fresher, more individual, fashion-forward and fabulously flawed.

There were three major trends on the Oscar’s red carpet this year: statement necklaces, ponytails and pearls.

Unfortunately, the statement Cate Blanchett chunky turquoise necklace had to make was weekend road trip to the Grand Canyon.  It’s hard to believe the necklace is Tiffany & Co.

Cate Blanchett in Margiela by John Galliano, Tiffany & Co. necklace.

Cate Blanchett in Margiela by John Galliano, Tiffany & Co. necklace.

Margot Robbie’s necklace statement was much more Oscar-worthy, she accessorized her Yves Saint Laurent dress with a vintage Van Cleef and Arpels necklace created for Wallis Simpson.

Margot Robbie in Yves Saint Laurent, vintage Van Cleef and Arpels necklace

Margot Robbie in Yves Saint Laurent, vintage Van Cleef and Arpels necklace

Dakota Johnson, smoldering in Yves Saint Laurent, whipped her hair into a playful ponytail, while Jennifer Lopez topped her nude Elie Saab with a more slicked-back look.

Dakota Johnson in Yves Saint Laurent and Jennifer Lopez in Elie Saab

Dakota Johnson in Yves Saint Laurent and Jennifer Lopez in Elie Saab

Felicity Jones wore Alexander McQueen with pearls in the center of the three dimensional embroidery on the bodice.

Felicity Jones in Alexander McQueen

Felicity Jones in Alexander McQueen

Lupita Nyong’o had the pearliest of creations, with 6,000 lustrous spheres sewn to her Calvin Klein dress.

Lupita Nyong'o in Calvin Klein

Lupita Nyong’o in Calvin Klein

The luminous Julianne Moore wore custom Chanel in lustrous white.  The column dress took 927 hours to make, but its detailing left me a bit divided on the look overall, evoking somewhat of a sea creature feel.

JulianneMooreChanel

Sadly, Marion Cotillard, who usually makes it to the top of best-dressed lists, looked like she pulled a Little Mermaid with the tablecloth from a sushi restaurant.

Marion Cotillard in Dior

Marion Cotillard in Dior

Versace dressed new mothers Zoe Saldana and Scarlett Johansson, one of the best and one of the worst looks of the evening.  Scarlett looked like a cross-dressing Jolly Green Giant in a New Orleans brothel.

Zoe Saldana and Scarlett Johansson in Versace

Zoe Saldana and Scarlett Johansson in Versace

Also in Versace was Jennifer Aniston who got slimed on the red carpet by Emma Stone’s Ectoplasma-Green Elie Saab gown.

Jennifer Aniston in Versace and Emma Stone in Elie Saab

Jennifer Aniston in Versace and Emma Stone in Elie Saab

No one told Jessica Chastain that navy blue was over, probably because she’s this hot and it’s kind of annoying.

Jessica Chastain in Givenchy

Jessica Chastain in Givenchy

Gwyneth Paltrow wore a petal pink Ralph and Russo that kind of grows on you after a while.

Gwyneth Paltrow in Ralph and Russo

Gwyneth Paltrow in Ralph and Russo

Lady Gaga one-upped Amal Clooney’s awkward Golden Globes gloves with her tribute to both dishwashing and falconry.

Lady Gaga

Lady Gaga

Nicole Kidman accessorized with red as well, although the belt on the opalescent yellow dress made her look like a magician’s assistant after the sawing in half trick went horribly wrong.

Nicole Kidman in Louis Vuitton

Nicole Kidman in Louis Vuitton

Rita Ora drew the Marchesa short straw, wearing one of the designs of Harvey Weinstein’s wife which always tend to look like they were crafted with a glue gun on a Percocet high.

Rita Ora in Marchesa

Rita Ora in Marchesa

The best and worst went to the Brits.

Naomi Watts seemed to have hit a wall while wearing Liza Minnelli’s sports bra with this Armani Prive gown.

Naomi Watts in Armani Prive

Naomi Watts in Armani Prive

Rosamund Pike was perfection in red lace Givenchy.

Rosamund Pike in Givenchy

Rosamund Pike in Givenchy

And of course, the Best Undressed went to host Neil Patrick Harris.

Neil Patrick Harris

Neil Patrick Harris

redheartsignature copy

Taylor Swift Ticks Off NYC

When I discovered Taylor Swift was the Most Charitable Celebrity of 2012 and 2013 AND named her cat Olivia Benson, I had to rethink my attitude about her being the most annoying human being on the planet.  Her altruism and self-proclaimed cat lady status moved me, so I decided to channel all former negativity I felt towards her into a dislike of jeggings.  But now that Swift has announced that she’s officially serving as New York City’s Global Welcome Ambassador, it’s seriously putting a dent in my reformed Taylor Swift attitude.

Back in March, Swift moved into her new $20 million Tribeca loft and declared herself to be in a New York state of mind at the moment, deciding she’d split her time among her various homes, the mansions in LA and Nashville and the one in Rhode Island she uses for her Fourth of July parties.

Just a few weeks before settling in to the pad she bought from Peter Jackson on Franklin Street, Swift declared Nashville would always remain her home, telling Time Magazine:

I love L.A. and New York and I spend a lot of time there promoting albums and doing photo shoots… Choosing to have my management company based in Nashville just made sense because my family is there as well as my record label. I never think about moving home bases. It’s hard to describe why you consider a town your home base, except that when people ask me “Where’s home?”, I don’t even think before I say “Nashville.”

Interesting.  So Taylor Swift considers NYC a place to sell albums and have her picture taken and yet she takes a paid gig as the official spokesperson for NYC, recording videos for nycgo.com professing herself an expert on the city she sporadically lives in and sometimes sees from the back of her chauffeured SUV?  For the record, real New Yorkers are way too broke from paying rent to have a mansion dedicated solely to our Fourth of July parties.  I have a star-shaped bowl that’s dedicated to my Fourth of July parties.  Okay, it’s my Fourth of July, New Year’s, Oscar’s bowl and sometimes I eat cereal out of it when I haven’t done my dishes in a while.  Real New Yorkers don’t have time for dishes, so suck on that Swift.

Calling yourself a New Yorker is a badge of honor, it’s earned, not bestowed on you for PR purposes, clearly Taylor Swift has never interacted with a real New Yorker if she thinks this is something we’re going to politely shrug off.  After the announcement was made, NYC Go’s Facebook page was flooded with with protest and residents started Tweeting their disdain.  As a city, we’re pretty peeved, even Canadians, our perpetually polite neighbors to the north, are chiming in with derision.

Being a New Yorker isn’t about buying couture in different neighborhoods, it’s what we’re willing to do to protect our over-priced designer goods once we get them.  I once had a rat the size of a Cocker Spaniel try to mug me on a subway platform and I stared down that mother f***ing rodent until it slinked away because I happened to like that bag.  Being a New Yorker is sitting in Yankee Stadium in April when the weather is still cold and drinking a watered-down beer and a hot dog made of some kind of meat-like substance.  It’s about going to some tiny Off Off Off Off Broadway theatre that smells like moldy upholstery and deflated hope because one of your friends has two lines in a play loosely based on nothing.  It’s constantly running into people you know in a city of 8.4 million, getting food poisoning from the falafel you bought at 3am from a sidewalk vendor, knowing with almost absolute certainty that your death will be caused by a faulty hatch door on a sidewalk, getting creeped out by A-Rod relentlessly hitting on you, having an anxiety attack every time you fight your way through Time Square, and feeling a sense of pride every time you spot Elegant Elliot jog down Second Avenue in a negligee.  It’s yelling at the same strangers you would rush to help without hesitation if they needed it, wearing black as a sign of mourning for that extra closet space you’ll never know, and going to a friend’s apartment in the middle of the night to kill a water bug that’s so huge, even her pet beast is afraid of it.  Most importantly, being a New Yorker is about loyalty to the city you love.  We don’t cheat on our city with other cities, and we certainly don’t call one city our home the same month we proclaim our adoration for another.

So Taylor Swift, you might have an enviable real estate portfolio, but you will never have the heart of a New Yorker.

redheart

 

signature copy

Renee Zellweger’s About Face

I’m worried.  Someone appears to have kidnapped Renee Zellweger, impersonated her at the Elle Women in Hollywood Awards on Monday night and no one is doing anything about it except conjecture about possible plastic surgery.

For all we know, Renee Zellweger is bound and gagged with duct-tape in the back of this woman’s car.  As a society, are we so blasé about celebrities showing up on red carpets looking nothing like their former selves that none of us pause for a moment to consider that maybe we should be forming a search party to look for the real Renee Zellweger?  Or at least admit something very strange is happening here, and I’m not talking just Single White Female kinda quirky, I’m talking, holy-crap, call Mulder, this is definitely an X-files situation?  I want men in dark suits who don’t have social security numbers or even fingerprints working on this in a secret underground government research facility in Nevada.

Renee Zellweger has dismissed Tuesday’s plastic surgery rumors as “silly” and said in a statement to People Magazine, “I’m glad folks think I look different! I’m living a different, happy, more fulfilling life, and I’m thrilled that perhaps it shows.”  She went on to explain that before she was making bad choices and credits her relationship with Doyle Bramhall for her metamorphosis, pointing out, “People don’t know me in my 40s.”

Except, we do.  This is what now 45 year-old Renee Zellweger looked like at the 2012 Met Gala, the 2013 Met Gala and the Elle Women in Hollywood Awards on Monday night (left to right):

ReneeZellweger2012,2013,2014

Uh-huh.  Sure.  My blood is probably 72% Diet Coke and every single piece of fruit I’ve eaten this month has been candied, which quite frankly is how I think fruit should grow, so as the Unofficial Spokesperson for Unhealthy Living, I don’t think so.

Which basically just leaves boyfriend Doyle Bramhall.  And not in a my-dreamy-boyfriend-made-me-breakfast-in-bed kinda way.  They’ve been dating for two years, her face changes drastically somewhere in the last year, and he goes along like everything’s normal?  I don’t know if he’s some kind of genius mad scientist plastic surgeon who performed a complete face transplant using a generic blonde Hollywood actress as the unwilling face donor or if he’s some kind of intergalactic traveler experimenting with host bodies, but something is definitely up.  You can tell by his hair, it’s clearly full of secrets.

DoyleBramhall

Despite the best efforts of plastic surgery experts interviewed in media outlets around the world, I still don’t think there’s a mix and match procedural scenario that adequately explains this phenomena.

Did the specter of the doomed Mark Darcyless Bridget Jones Diary 3 film that may never be steal Renee’s face in an elaborate heist where Julia Roberts played someone playing Julia Roberts?  Does Doyle Bramhall secretly have a spaceship stashed in his hair?  Is the real Renee Zellweger being used by an evil Richard Gere Terminator from the future to reenact the ventriloquist scenes from Chicago because even evil Terminators enjoy good musicals?

The truth is out there.

redheart

signature copy

 

Lindsay Lohan’s Latest…

Every now and then I Google Lindsay Lohan’s name just to make sure she’s still alive because I figure someone should and I saw a story where she claims to the Telegraph that she rolled Whitney Houston’s body bag while she was doing part of her community service at the LA County Morgue.  According to Lindsay, she was called upon because the others “…can’t handle it.  Lohan can.”

Unfortunately for Lindsay Lohan, the coroner called BS on this one, stating Whitney Houston was never even in a body bag and no one from the probation program came into contact with her body.

Whoopsie.  Now, Lindsay has a long-established history of truth-telling impairment but to falsely brag about her courageous corpse-handling skills is weird even for her.

Sometimes I wonder if the Loch Ness monster hears stories about Lindsay Lohan but doesn’t believe she is real.  Like at best, Nessie thinks Lindsay Lohan is a floating trash bag or a twisted tree branch.

Lindsay stars in Speed the Plow starting September 24th at The Playhouse in London.  Assuming of course she isn’t abducted by aliens or Muppet Babies or a jar of Cheez Whiz.

redheart

signature copy

Joan Rivers

Joan Rivers would have hated her death.  The 81 year-old comedienne who passed away yesterday in her private room at Mount Sinai Hospital after getting to spend time with her dogs, daughter and grandson, once said, “I hate people who die of natural causes; they just don’t understand the moment.  It’s the grand finale, act three, the eleven o’clock number – make it count!… If you’re going to die, die interesting!  Is there anything worse than a boring death?  (Other than a Charlie Rose Marathon on PBS?).  I think not.  When my time comes I’m going to go out in high style.  I have no intention of being sick or lingering or dragging on and on and boring everyone I know, I have no intention of coughing and wheezing for months on end.  One morning you’ll wake up and read a headline: Joan Rivers Found Dead… On George Clooney’s Face, Clooney Was So Bereft All He Could Say Was, “XJFHFYRNEM.”

It would have killed Joan that her death was caused by throat procedure complications at Yorkville Endoscopy a week ago and not under sexier or more scandalous circumstances.  She would have complained that her five day medically induced coma was so unbearably dull, Kristen Stewart tried to date it and Gwyneth Paltrow Gooped about feeding it to her kids, but it would have been a small price to pay if it helped Melissa meet a nice single Jewish doctor.

Joan often joked she loved the dating prospects created by funerals which she likened to “a red carpet show for dead people” but hated eulogizing.  To the platitude of “he’s in a better place” she admitted wanting to shout, “No he’s not.  He had a house in the Hamptons.  What’s wrong with you?”

Joan spoke about wanting her funeral to be “a huge showbiz affair”, with paparazzi, publicists and Craft services, noting, “I want Meryl Streep crying, in five different accents.  I don’t want a eulogy; I want Bobby Vinton to pick up my head and sing “Mr. Lonely.”  I want to look gorgeous, better dead than I do alive.  I want to be buried in a Valentino gown and I want Harry Winston to make me a toe tag.  And I want a wind machine so that even in the casket my hair is blowing just like Beyonce’s.”

Joan was the Queen of Snark and while the kingdom is less outrageously funny without her leadership, she wouldn’t want us to mourn her passing, she would want us to celebrate life with laughter and accessorize with bee pins.  We must remember Joan how she would have wanted us to, as George Clooney’s face cushion.  But if George Clooney doesn’t release the statement, “XJFHFYRNEM”, I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to forgive him.

redheart

 

signature copy

Emmys 2014 Red Carpet

At the 2014 Emmy Awards, fashion took a wrong turn down a dark alley and then raided the dumpsters.

Worst red carpet ever.  Hollywood flew over the cuckoo’s nest and Nurse Ratched gave a fashion lobotomy to the stragglers.

The Emmy’s Red Carpet had way too much tulle and taffeta for grown adults.  Sarah Paulson, Lena Dunham, Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting and Melissa McCarthy (left to right or rather left to wrong) all channeled their inner fairy princesses and proved why you should never take anything Lindsay Lohan gives you, even if she swears it’s just a mint.

FairyPrincessFails

Sarah Paulson, Lena Dunham, Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting and Melissa McCarthy in Fairy Princess Fails

The only one who successfully pulled off the ballerina princess look was Sarah Hyland in Christian Siriano.

SarahHylandinChristianSiriano

Sarah Hyland in Christian Siriano

Sadly, this is the best Melissa McCarthy has ever looked, but she seems unable to escape the bead-defecating Chico’s pigeon that usually dumps some sort of cheaply fabricated design element on her, this time the offending sparkle landed around the waist of her Marchesa skirt.  Somehow she still hasn’t explored jewelry as a shiny alternative.

MelissaMcCarthycloseup

Marchesa (and I’m assuming heroin) did this to Christina Hendricks.

ChristinaHendricksMarchesa

Christina Hendricks in Marchesa

Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig should sit in the corner and think about what they did to one of the most beautiful women in Hollywood.

Mayim Bialik from Big Bang Theory said she wanted to look “hot and holy” at the Emmys this year.  Mayim is an Orthodox Jew and while I respect her wanting to be covered up for religious reasons, when I first saw this, I thought, “Holy crap, that’s one steaming pile of hideous electric blue lace.”

MayimBialik

Mayim Bialik in Oliver Tolentino

Co-star Melissa Rauch showed how to pull off brilliant blue that isn’t flaming fashion poo in her Pamella Roland gown:

MelissaRauch

Melissa Rauch in Pamella Roland

Also in blue, Christine Baranski went for a deeper hue in this elegant caped Zac Posen dress:

Christine Baranski in ZacPosen

Christine Baranski in Zac Posen

Unfortunately Zac Posen was also responsible for Heidi Klum’s coral column creation.  Perhaps he didn’t want to be her date after all because you have to be trying to make Heidi Klum look this matronly.

Heidi Klum in Zac Posen

Heidi Klum in Zac Posen

Laura Prepon’s confusing Gustavo Cadile seemed like premeditated fashion assault, channeling one of Kim Basinger’s worst red carpet looks:

lauraprepon

While Kerry Washington looked like a Pinterest DIY Disaster in this ill-fitting Prada dress with sequin slip detail:

Kerry Washington in Prada

Kerry Washington in Prada

Kate Mara’s J. Mendal dress looked like a desperate tourniquet attempt to stop the crystal detailing from spreading:

Kate Mara in J. Mendal

Kate Mara in J. Mendal

The best of the embellished had to be Julia Roberts in Elie Saab.

Julia Roberts in Elie Saab

Julia Roberts in Elie Saab

Even though up close, the dress sort of looked like a negligee with Disco Viagra glued to it.

Julia Roberts Elie Saab Dress Detail

Julia Roberts Elie Saab Dress Detail

Sadly not everyone who suffered a fashion lobotomy fate even made it out of the straight jacket:

Michelle Monaghan in Giambattista Valli Couture

Michelle Monaghan in Giambattista Valli Couture

Although some of those who did just went with messy hair and apathy as their boldest accessories:

Kristen Wiig in Vera Wang

Kristen Wiig in Vera Wang

Picking the worst of the worst is not an easy feat in this year’s Suckfest of Fashion, but the break-away was probably Breaking Bad’s Betsy Brandt.  Her custom Alice and Olivia dress looked like an old Laura Ashley tablecloth with splattered Easter Egg dye and the styling was so clumsy, it was almost criminal.

Betsy Brandt in Alice and Olivia

Betsy Brandt in Alice and Olivia

Best dressed would have to go to Lizzy Caplan, totally fetch in a black Donna Karan Atelier gown with a halter top, on-trend cut-out sides and white train.  That’s right, I just made “fetch” happen.  And later I’m going to bake a cake filled with rainbows and smiles.

LizzyCaplaninDonnaKaran

All in all, not a good year for Emmys fashion, though.

redheart

 

signature copy

Robin Williams

“You’re only given a little spark of madness. You mustn’t lose it.”    -Robin Williams

On Monday night, comedian, actor, producer, writer, father, husband and philanthropist, Robin Williams took his own life.  His legendary career as an entertainer began with a guest stint on “Happy Days”, as an alien named Mork, a role he played for four years on the hit spin-off “Mork and Mindy”.  His award-winning stand-up comedy spanned four decades while his film work showcased his versatility as an actor.  Williams was nominated for Academy Awards for his roles in “Good Morning, Vietnam”, “The Fisher King” and “Dead Poets Society”, finally winning a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for “Good Will Hunting”.

The man who brought laughter to so many struggled throughout his life with addiction and depression.  He was devoted to philanthropic endeavors through his Windfall Foundation, “Comic Relief” and other charitable fund-raising efforts while every day he strove to brighten the lives of others by using his tremendous comedic gift.

At rest, Robin Williams was quiet, gentle, unassuming and introspective.  When he had an audience, whether seated in a theater or simply by virtue of close physical proximity, his blue eyes would spark with the awakening of the great entertainer within, ripping through his 5’7” frame like a quick-witted Hulk on Prozac and Red Bull.

While Williams never tried to hide his inner demons up in the attic when company came over, it’s so difficult imaging him giving up.  After getting over the initial shock, I thought to myself, if Robin Williams couldn’t find happiness, if his talents, loving family, and the respect of so many just weren’t enough, what hope is there for any of us?

Last week a dear friend visited me, we’ve known each other for a very long time, he is one of the most important people in the world to me.  As we sat outside in my backyard on a perfect summer’s afternoon, I asked him, “Do you think it’s possible that some people just don’t get to be happy?”  He replied no, equated love and happiness, and asked what would make me happy.  I admitted I didn’t know.  He continued, “You want to get married, don’t you?”  I thought for a second and finally conceded without bothering to elaborate on marriage being a lovely idea but not a driving force for me.  He seemed delighted by the idea of finding me a husband, I told him no, and I didn’t want him to set me up with anyone, nor did I want to discuss the topic of marriage with him.  I then explained I don’t believe love and happiness are the same thing, love is an eternal binding force with divine origin whereas happiness is a temporary human emotion.  Shortly thereafter, my friend eluded to the “the forbidden topic”, I reminded him I didn’t want to discuss it.  As he left, he said he was going to work on that thing that I didn’t want to talk about.  I waited until he was out the front door of the building before I burst into tears.

My first question for you is the original question I posed to him: do you think it is possible that some people just don’t get to be happy?  Robin Williams was someone who brought joy to so many but struggled to find even slivers of it for himself.  Is it possible some people just get fleeting moments of happiness while others get things like cool life experiences or special talents as part of a deal they never made?  Or does life just suck for everyone, except some people like Robin Williams just feel the pain more acutely?  The second question is why it upset me so deeply that my friend thinks the key to my happiness involves him finding me a husband?  Am I just hurt he didn’t respect my wishes to drop the subject, was I wounded because it felt like he was brushing me off with a quick-fix all-purpose remedy I knew wouldn’t work, or did he touch an embedded nerve, maybe deep down I fear I’ll never find anyone I could love even half as much as my first love?  There are no right or wrong answers, just therapy I don’t have to pay for.

redheart

 

signature copy

Happy Birthday, Marilyn Monroe!

MarilynMonroe

If Marilyn Monroe were alive today, she would be eighty-eight years old.  The same age as Queen Elizabeth II and grandmothers everywhere in sensible shoes who still call salons beauty parlors.  It’s hard to imagine the blonde bombshell pulling a hankie from the ever-present purse filled with swiped restaurant sugar packets and hard candies.  Tragically, Marilyn’s life ended at the age of thirty-six, her dream of family never realized, she suffered two miscarriages and an ectopic pregnancy and famously taped a handwritten note to her stomach pleading with her surgical team, “Please, I want to have children.”  A rekindled romance with her second husband, Joe DiMaggio was a love-story left incomplete, but never forgotten by the baseball legend who had flowers delivered to her grave three times a week to honor a promise he had made on their wedding day.  His dying words were, “I’ll finally get to see Marilyn.”

Marilyn Monroe’s death remains shrouded in mystery, officially ruled a “probable suicide”, the suspicious circumstances still debated.  An empty pill bottle found next to her body, a conveniently reappearing glass, and a 4:30am load of laundry that remains one of the few undisputed facts on the timeline of her death.  Her body disappeared for six hours on the way to the coroner who changed Marilyn’s time of death from 9:30-11:30pm on August 4, 1962 to 3:50am on August 5, 1962 to match the revised witness statements.  The cause was an overdose of chloral hydrate and Nembutal of which there was no trace in her stomach or intestines, indicating they had not been taken orally, nor were there any injection marks on her body.  When the pathologist ordered tests of her other organs to determine how the drugs were introduced into her system, they had already been destroyed.

The theories on her death reveal a complicated and tortured life, it’s possible her death was at her own hands, a medical accident, or murder, potentially at the hands of the mob, a doctor, an angry wife, a scorned lover or a Kennedy, more than one had an interest in seeing her silenced.  It’s likely we’ll never know what happened, despite the discovery in 1972 during renovations of Marilyn’s home by the new owner that every single wall had been bugged with hi-tech surveillance equipment known to be used by the FBI.

The little girl born Norma Jeane Mortenson on June 1, 1926 in Los Angeles, California and baptized Norma Jeane Baker spent her childhood moving around between foster homes and orphanages suffered from depression, agoraphobia and social anxiety disorder, issues that both plagued and compelled her.  She went from teased tomboy to the film siren known as Marilyn Monroe, her ambition rooted in her desire to be loved and adored.  Marilyn is temporally frozen in the gleaming amber of Hollywood’s Golden Age, devoured by the life she was driven to create.  She remains forever young with the vulnerability of a child, the bursting voluptuous of a sex symbol and the savvy of a business woman who knew the smartest thing she ever did was play dumb.  Marilyn was a contradiction, a mystery even to herself.

The actress was able to turn being Marilyn Monroe on and off like a light switch.  She was able to walk down the street unrecognized but sometimes would decide on whim she’d like to be Marilyn mid-stroll.  Friends marveled at how she could transform from pretty blonde to international celebrity swarmed by fans without losing a step.

Marilyn believed in being very dressed up, very dressed down or not dressed at all.  When she wasn’t in skin-tight evening gowns, she wore jeans, complaining that Parisian designers didn’t make clothing for her hourglass body shape.  At home, she preferred to wear a robe, a bikini or nothing at all.

Marilyn worked closely with make-up artist Whitey Snyder to create the iconic Marilyn looked and became an expert in applying make-up in her own right.  The process sometimes took Marilyn hours because every single product had to applied perfectly, if it wasn’t she would take it all off and start again.  She was notoriously reticent about sharing her beauty secrets, but over the years revealed some while others have been disclosed by friends, industry professionals, unsealed medical records and her first ex-husband James Dougherty.

In celebration of the life many consider to have been the sexiest woman of all time, below is a glimpse into the crafting of the cinematic icon.

redheartbulletpoint Born a blonde, Marlyn’s hair became a mousy light brown in her early teens.  She was advised to dye her hair because blondes were more in demand in Hollywood, so over the years she experimented with twelve different shades on the road to her iconic platinum blonde shade.

redheartbulletpoint In 1950, the “Chinless Wonder” as she was referred to in Hollywood had rhinoplasty on the tip of her nose and a sponge chin implant.

redheartbulletpoint For filming, Marilyn wore hormone cream, Nivea and Vaseline under her foundation.  A side-effect of the hormone cream was peach fuzz growth on her face which she refused to get rid of because of the glow it created on film.

redheartbulletpoint Marilyn Monroe was so concerned about blemishes and any dark marks on her skin from the daily grind, she washed her face fifteen times a day, rinsing her face fifteen times with each cleansing which also probably had to do with OCD as much as it did with beauty.

redheartbulletpoint When she wasn’t wearing make-up, she slathered olive oil on her face to protect her face, from what I don’t know.  Dirt ninjas?  Airborne vinegar?

redheartbulletpoint Her famous wiggle walk was created by shaving down one of her heels a half inch.

redheartbulletpoint While her dress size is often debated, Marilyn’s dressmaker revealed that Marilyn was 5’5 ½”, her fluctuating weight stayed within a range of 118lbs and 140lbs and her measurements were: Bust 35″-37″, Waist: 22″-23″
 and Hips: 35″-36″.  Her bra size was 36D.

redheartbulletpoint Marilyn created her trademark red pout with lip liner, five blended shades of lipstick, lip gloss and a highlighting cream in the center to make them look plumper.

redheartbulletpoint When talking with others, she would often fix her gaze on their forehead because it gave the illusion that her eyes were bigger.  The conversational habit was said to infuriate a number of her peers.

redheartbulletpoint She used an eyebrow pencil to give a natural beauty mark more definition, creating an iconic feature.

redheartbulletpoint She knew the appeal of intelligence and was always reading to expand her mind.  She had a personal library of over four hundred books which contained titles like Metaphysics by Aristotle and The Life and Works of Sigmund Freud.

redheartbulletpointMarilyn rarely took a bad photo because she studied herself in the mirror so thoroughly, she knew what she looked like at any angle.

For anyone wishing to create Marilyn’s iconic make-up, there’s a YouTube tutorial I found that’s the most authentic out of all the tutorials I have ever seen:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RAneUTr8mog

redheart

signature copy

 

 

 

 

Memorial Day Kardashian/Cambridge Mashup

If Kim Kardashian and Kanye West are the #worldsmosttalkedaboutcouple, then the world has come down with a case of laryngitis.  Crowds of teens gathered outside the wedding venue weren’t there to catch a glimpse of the bride and groom, they were holding up Justin Bieber signs in the hope that the singer would show up as a wedding guest.  The bride and groom haven’t been trending on Yahoo, but among those who have been are Lisa Niemi, Patrick Swayze’s widow who married jeweler Albert DePrisco, Harry Potter who is fictional and actress Juliette Binoche who is at Cannes.  In fact, the closest thing I saw to Kimye in the Trending Top Ten is Finnish race car driver Kimi Raikkonen.

Kim’s third trip down the aisle was decidedly less star-studded than the wedding her last groom declared was all a sham.  Beyonce and Jay Z opted to not be part of Cirque de so Overplayed.  Vogue editor Anna Wintour was unable to attend because of a family obligation.  Brother Brody Jenner offered the excuse that he was going to be DJing in Chicago at the time.  And brother Rob Kardashian flew to Paris only to turn around and come home after the bride-to-be reportedly chastised him for not losing weight for her wedding, thus making Rob Kardashian the only member of his family who appears to have any self respect.

While America has answered this self-hyping couple with the sound of crickets, I think we need to go one step further and lock up the US while the Kardashian clan is still in Europe, chains, padlocks, whatever it takes.  Rob Kardashian can stay since he appears to only be an asymptomatic carrier of Kardashian Famewhoreitis although he will need to be quarantined if he’s responsible for any Typhoid Mary-type Twitter Selfie Outbreaks.

Kim Kardashian’s Givenchy wedding dress was a “sexy” version of the Kate Middleton wedding dress, proving that even boring can be turned trashy in the skilled hands of a former sex tape star.  Rebecca Potzner posted a pic of the wedding dress on Instagram, I took a screen grab of it to show Kim Kardashian’s Kate Middleton-inspired wedding dress and veil.  Still not a fan of the cocoon effect the veil has, especially since we know what’s going to hatch from it.

kimkardashianweddingdress

In case you missed the starpulse.com article about Kate Middleton and Prince William, it’s a must-read account of the growing animosity both inside and outside palace gates towards the Duke and Duchess of Doolittle’s disregard for duty.  The article a well-articulated overview of mounting tension within the family that also highlights how Kate lies to get out of events, claiming the Queen told her not to worry about duties and just enjoy her family.  Lazy Kate has been spinning a yarn to get out of work even before she was duchess, the paparazzi, deceased mother-in-law, Prince William, pregnancy and Prince George have all been her offered excuses.  Now Kate’s pinning her lazy ways on someone who no one would dare question, the Queen.  No wonder Kate never wears pants, the liar liar would perpetually find them on fire.

Kate’s love of full skirts in windy conditions has sparked a new privacy debate about a photo being auctioned of Kate’s bare bum which was exposed at the Blue Mountains event.  Kim Kardashian isn’t the only one with a famous ass, the backside of Kate, Duchess of Kambridge can get some attention, too.  Here’s a look behind the bum scandal scenes, Wills does not look happy: http://lookagiraffe.tumblr.com.

This isn’t the first time Kate has flashed her bare bum, and I’m not talking about the bottomless bikini balcony pics from France or her exposed backside at Calgary or all of the so-called wardrobe malfunctions.  Kate was a serial mooner in her younger days, earning her the nickname Kate Middlebum in Marlborough College for her frequently dropping trou to expose her bare behind to boys to improve her popularity.

Kate already had one wardrobe malfunction on the New Zealand/Australia Royal Vacation Tour, she’s aware of both underwear and the extra-windy conditions related to air travel, she might be dim-witted but she’s certainly not headless.  Given that in her younger days, she exposed herself to make boys like her, it seems not much has really changed, except she’s not a teenager anymore, she’s a duchess, wife and mother with a history of using exhibitionism to help fuel her feelings of self-worth.

What’s interesting about this reported photo auction is that there is one at all.  Usually the public hears about Kate’s “Marilyn Moments” and thinks the duchess flashed a bit of thigh when in reality, she showed much more at these events.  As much as the paparazzi is reviled, there is an ethical code most adhere to when it comes to embarrassing wardrobe malfunction photos of First Ladies, Royals and other respected female public figures.  Photographers might show a copy to a family member or friend but the embarrassing images of respected public figures are never sold, e-mailed or posted on the internet, they remain in the possession of the photographers who took them.  Despite Queen Elizabeth’s use of hem weights and careful clothing selections, there have been a couple of slight wardrobe malfunction photos taken during her sixty-two year reign that will never ever see the light of day out of respect to the monarch.  Kate never earned that same kind of respect because of her pre-Duchess days as Waity Katie and The Mattress.

For those who don’t know the history of The Mattress moniker, Prince William’s security detail is credited for coming up with it because of how poorly Prince William treated Kate while they were dating.  No matter how cruelly or coldly Prince William was to her, she would always run to answer his late-night booty calls so she could have the perceived honor of sexually pleasuring the Petulant Prince she called Big Willie.  Kate was his sex doormat.

It’s hard to respect someone who doesn’t respect herself and few really believed Prince William would actually marry The Limpet, as Prince Harry referred to Kate.  When Prince William did say I do, Kate benefited from a reserve cache of respect she got through marriage, the press kept the more embarrassing wardrobe malfunction photos out of the mainstream media and photographers would e-mail them to friends or anonymously post them online.

This Blue Mountains photo auction would suggest Kate’s used up the last of the press protection she received through marriage.  If Buckingham Palace does manage some legal maneuver to get the sale squashed or attempts to procure it using other means, I suspect some of the more embarrassing Kate photos from the past will surface as a gentle reminder to the Palace that they have been benefiting from photographer restraint.  In addition to Kate’s potential pre-Duchess indiscretions and official engagement wardrobe malfunctions, it’s been strongly hinted that far more intimate photos from the French balcony series exist, one set is rumored to show Kate kneeling before her prince en plein air.

The Lazy Duo’s reputation as a couple isn’t helped by Prince William deciding he wants to take another transitional year as an air ambulance helicopter pilot.  With only a few months to go on his transitional year between RAF pilot and full-time royal, Prince William wants to further stall the inevitable full-time duties of his birthright.  He’s thirty-one, a father, a husband and… what’s that other thing… ah, yes a Prince, it’s a little late in the game to be scrambling to think of other things he’d rather be.  If his birthright is so loathsome, he should remove himself and his son from succession instead of engaging in never-ending attempts to have the perks of royalty without any of the responsibilities.

Of course, the real appeal of the new pilot job might be the regular hours he will be spending away from Kate.  The new gig means Kate will receive her favorite gift of all, more possible excuses not to work, like taking care of Prince George all by her lonesome, with only a nanny, a housekeeper who serves as back-up nanny, a personal assistant and a whole support team of staff to help out when Prince William is away.

Prince George is revealing that he’s kind of a badass as far as babies go.  He rocks a bit of a punk mohawk, dives right into baby mosh pits, swiped a little girl’s doll and made her cry, his teething style is pure Ozzy Osbourne, and he drools and craps in his pants just like Hugh Hefner.

Prince George racked up a ton of cool stuff while on the New Zealand/Australia Royal Vacation Tour like a surfboard and skateboard, but he didn’t have to budge an inch to score the latest gift, an aviator jacket that was given to Prince Charles on his Canada tour.  So now Prince George is like Top Gun cool.

PrinceGeorgeAviatorJacket

The latest on Prince George’s antics reveals that when met his second cousin, Mia, who is the daughter of Zara Phillips and Mike Tindall, he started a food fight, described by Mia’s Dad as “carnage”.

Prince George can’t even talk yet and the tiny terror already has far more personality than both of his parents combined.

redheart

signature copy