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Beat the Heat, Cinematically

Beat the Heat, Cinematically

BY DAVID NOH | The dog days of summer are already here, with wilting heat that makes escaping into an air-cooled moviehouse a highly sensible thing to do. The greatest movie dance team is being celebrated by Film Society of Lincoln Center with a complete retrospective, “Fred and Ginger.” The series kicks off on July […]

Divas and Tough Guys

Divas and Tough Guys

BY DAVID NOH | I don’t think I am alone in regretting that I was not in New York in 1962 to catch Judy Garland’s much-lauded Carnegie Hall concert. I am able to say, however, that I was at the Nederlander Theatre this past Sunday, September 24, to see Patti LuPone at the Broadway Cares/ Equity […]

The Fire This Time

The Fire This Time

BY GARY M. KRAMER | The extraordinary documentary “I Am Not Your Negro” uses text from James Baldwin’s unfinished work “Remember This House,” along with archival footage ranging from the author speaking at Cambridge University to his appearance on “The Dick Cavett Show,” as the cornerstone for examining the oppression and invisibility endured by African […]

Carol Ann Wrote the Book!  

Carol Ann Wrote the Book!  

BY DAVID NOH | One of the most highly anticipated books by many in our community has finally hit the stores. It’s “Mommie Dearest Diaries,” by my dear friend actress Rutanya Alda. In that ultimate cult film, she played Carol Ann, faithful lifelong amanuensis –– aka slave –– to Joan Crawford, embodied by that fire-breathing and […]

A Forgotten Masterful Gay Auteur 

A Forgotten Masterful Gay Auteur 

BY DAVID NOH | For all you lovers of movie musicals, imagine “Meet Me in St. Louis” without the ebullient “ Trolley Song” number, or “Summer Stock,” without Judy Garland’s iconic “Get Happy” celebration. What about “Easter Parade” without the raffishly amusing “We’re a Couple of Swells,” “Gigi” without the effervescent “The Night They Invented Champagne,” […]

Imperishable Vamps

Imperishable Vamps

BY DAVID NOH | The mesmerizing world of film noir offers the perfect dark, cool respite from summer’s heat and, starting July 18, Film Forum presents “Femmes Noir” (209 W. Houston St., through Aug. 7, filmforum.org). It’s a comprehensive run-down of titles featuring Hollywood’s most iconic actresses being alluring, mysterious, treacherous and even downright murderous. […]

Carol Ann Speaks Her Peace

Carol Ann Speaks Her Peace

BY DAVID NOH | Christina Crawford disdains it, Faye Dunaway won’t talk about it, Diana Scarwid and Mara Hobel aren’t saying anything, so what a blessing it was to encounter the delightfully outspoken Rutanya Alda, who is truly our link to the Holy Grail of gay cult movies, “Mommie Dearest.” Alda, who played Joan Crawford’s lifelong […]

Greatest American Film Actress

Greatest American Film Actress

BY DAVID NOH | Although she is not as celebrated and written about as her contemporaries Katharine Hepburn and Bette Davis, a very strong case could be made for Barbara Stanwyck (1907-1990), far more versatile than either, as the pre-eminent American film actress of the sound era. Easily supporting this assertion are her films themselves, 88 […]

Beyond Those Wire Hangers

Beyond Those Wire Hangers

BY DAVID NOH | Appropriate for Mother’s Day, Christina Crawford blew into town with her show, “Surviving Mommie Dearest” at the Snapple Theater, and it was a must for anyone obsessed with her harrowing story, her formidable adoptive superstar mom, Joan Crawford, Hollywood in its so-called Golden Age, or that infamous camp cult favorite movie with […]

Mommie Issues

Mommie Issues

BY DAVID KENNERLEY | “Surviving Mommie Dearest,” starring none other than Christina Crawford herself — that’s right, the abused adopted daughter of Hollywood megastar Joan — is billed as “an empowering and inspirational new production,” limited to only five performances Off Broadway, that includes a film documentary about her healing the wounds of a tortured childhood. […]

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