Wednesday, February 11, 2015
hi, again......

I've been away from my blog for quite a while now.....
Between 'Health Issues', which have kind of worn me out, and other stressful things that have been happening, 
I just don't have the energy or desire to try and write a post.....
During this last 7 or 8 weeks, I got to watch a lot of films....I'm so very grateful to have been able to see almost all of the films up for Awards and winning many Awards already.
There are some very very good films this year, each of them hoping to pick up that 
Golden Fellow known as OSCAR!

What to go and see or rent?

Here's a suggestion:

If you haven't already seen it,
give yourself the gift of---

This is a funny, endearing, delightful and beautifully filmed and edited picture that is pure joy!

There is a wonderful performance by Ralph Fiennes---brilliant, really....

Fiennes is handsome and charming and utter perfection as the Greatest Concierge of any Hotel, ever, ever---anywhere in the entire world!
He can make you laugh out loud, and a second later.....bring you to tears!

There are lots of fun 'name' actors in this film--some in very small parts----but, all, important!
It is a brilliant ensemble, and
it's a truly 'Original', (in every way) Screenplay by Wes Anderson, who also directed it.
It is gorgeous to look at---the production design and the sets and the costumes---plus the fantastic editing all add up to a feast for the eyes, and a truly special film experience.
This is a 'feel good' movie that is a welcome change from many of the so called serious and somewhat depressing films available right now.

There are nine inspiring films vying for the Best Picture Award.....

All worthy......
All worth seeing.....

"The Grand Budapest Hotel" stands alone in it's 100% entertainment quotient!

Top notch in every way.
Will it win Best Picture?
Probably not.
Should it win Best Picture?
(in my humble opinion)
It absolutely should!!
Oh, do try to see this, if you haven't already, before Sunday February 22nd.....

More To Come........

Note: I thank all of you dear sweet wonderful people for your concern and encouragement and your heartfelt caring....These are hard days, but knowing you are out there sending all of these sweet messages, means everything!
I thank each and every one of you with all of my heart.....!
Not sure how soon I will be posting again----time will tell....
And I promise to visit you, when I can....
Sending big hugs to you all.......

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Wednesday, December 24, 2014
happy happy holidays

A Very Very Merry Christmas To You All!
May 2015 be a Healthy, Happy, Joyous Year
For Each And Everyone Of You,
For All Those You Love And Hold Dear!

Sorry I have been MIA, but life has been difficult these days......
I'm looking forward to visiting you all again, and writing more again, in this approaching New Year of 2015!

Loving You All And Wishing You All 
The Very Best Of Everything!

More To Come........

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Friday, November 21, 2014
mike nichols

After I read the news of Mike Nichols death, early yesterday morning....All I could think about was what a great and special man he was----so talented in every way----writer, director, exceptional human being in every way----the loss to his dear dear wife and family----the loss to all of us-----especially those of my generation.

I remember Nichols and May.....what a team they were----How truly side-splitingly funny they were---how we all bought their recordings, wanting to savor forever their on-the-nose-humor where human foibles were concerned---that GREAT sketch where they were mother and son-----it was truthful and painful and hysterically funny, all at the same time.
And his incredible gifts as a Director-----winning 9 Tony's.  NINE!
A Grammy, a couple of Oscars and a couple of Emmy's, too......He was in that rarefied small group known as 'EGOTS'----people who had won the big four Awards given to those few people who have proven their talents in all the 'Arts'---Theatre, Movies, Music or Spoken Word and Television.....
I did not know Mike Nichols, though I spoke to him once, on the telephone---a funny story too long to go into here.....
But.....I felt like I knew him and more than that, that he knew me. 
His work---his choices of plays and films touched me deeply.

"Angels In America"; and epic life-changing work,  brought to the small screen by HBO....His love and attention and understanding of Tony Kushner's play spoke volumes to the heart and the head.
"Birdcage", a funny treasure of a film based on the French film, 'La Cage Aux Folles'....The casting was superb----Robin Williams and Nathan Lane and Gene Hackman and Diane Wiest among many other wonderful actors----
"Who'd Afraid Of Virginia Woolf", starring Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor----getting performances from them that were unforgettably memorable.....
He discovered Whoopi Goldberg doing stand-up in a small theatre in New York in 1984 and brought her to Broadway---making her "career".
The list goes on and on......films like "The Graduate", "Silkwood", "Catch-22" and on and on....He directed Robert Redford and Elizabeth Ashley on Broadway in "Barefoot In The Park", by Neil Simon.....and, again, Simon's "The Odd Couple" for Broadway, with Walter Mathau and Art Carney.....And another Neil Simon play, "The Prisoner Of 2nd Avenue", with my dear long-time friend, Lee Grant----I was at the Opening of that one, and on and on and on, gathering those 9 Tony's.....
It was Mike Nichols who brought "Death Of A Salesman" back to Broadway a few years ago, in a revival with Philip Seymour Hoffman......

When The American Film Institute honored Nichols with it's Life Achievement Award a few years ago, it was one of the most joyous evenings I have ever witnessed.  The love in that room for this true genius, and 'mensch' of a man, was palpable.....

I've watched all of those evenings since they began televising them-----this one was unique. The true feelings of love and respect and yes, awe, were undeniably real.
He was all those things

Why do I feel such a loss?
He was such an enormous presence in my world of 'show business' for over 55 years.
We were all so lucky to have had him in this world in our lifetime.
Someone you thought would go on, forever.
His death is another reminder of the fragility of life, especially as I grow older.
Another person who touched my life in such a deep way.

And of course, for those who really did know him and loved him---his beloved wife and children and grandchildren----and those incredibly lucky people who worked with him....

Well.....I cannot even imagine their loss.

RIP, dear dear Mike Nichols. 
I thank you for touching my heart and my soul and for giving me so many wonderful and exciting experiences with your exceptional razor-like understanding and your unique talent, and for giving me unforgettable spectacular memories that have and will stay with me, forever.

More To Come..........


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Sunday, November 02, 2014
public opinion debate

How come this is acceptable
I am not a prude by any means, but it seems to me the outfit that Miley Cyrus is wearing at this AMFAR Fund raiser is incredibly inappropriate and pretty close to cheesy porn......
(And Miley is not alone in this fashion statement)
Rihanna came in a close second in the cheesy department?
Is this how we, as women, want to be defined?
I thought we had moved on from all this......
Boy, was I

On the other hand.....
A mother breast feeding her baby is a very beautiful and natural thing to see in my humble opinion......

Is my "age" showing?

I think we are now in 'The Hand Basket', just about ready to take off for Hell!

What are your thoughts about all this?

More To Come........

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Wednesday, October 15, 2014
flowers - 1979

Here are some more incredible flowers from my dear old friend Ron Rifkin's English Garden. He had planted all these seeds in the yard of his Hollywood Hills Home......

And when they all bloomed I thought they were magnificent......Beautiful, in every way. So I asked him if I could come over and take a bunch of pictures of these incredibly gorgeous flowers It was fine with him. beautiful sunny afternoon I went over and took a huge amount of pictures----maybe 200 or more......
I don't know the names of any of these flowers----I'm sure Judy will know----But I just thought they were all incredibly stunning!
These pictures were all taken in 1979---I cannot believe that was 35 years ago.
As many of you know from having read my blog for a long long time, I love to get in close on plants and flowers.
Back then, I was using a Pentax SLR with a close up lens and with extension tubes as well, some of the time.......
I love seeing things in extreme close-up.  Like the picture above---where you can see all the little fuzzy hairs one would never notice or see, unless you can take it all in, in a very very close way---what they now call Macro.....
Back then.....I just wanted to get in as close as I could.
I love seeing these flowers in the 'abstract', so to speak.....the colors in the picture above just knock me out! I have said it so very many times-----you cannot beat nature and the colors that nature produces.......
The simplicity and yet, the's all magical, isn't it?
These are all slides for which I finally got a fantastic piece of equipment that allowed me to download them onto my about magical......

I met Ron and Iva back in the 1960's here in Los Angeles, so here is another lovely long long friendship that means a great deal to me......
Below, a photo I took of Ron in Hawaii, in 1974......What a special time that was.......
  He and his sweet dear wife Iva, eventually left Los Angeles and went back to live in Manhattan----Ron is a Wonderful actor and works on the stage as well as in film and television, and New York was the place for them to be, though he continued to work out here, too.....
Below, a picture of Ronnnie's beautiful wife, Iva, at a dinner party in New York that Lee Grant and her dear husband Joey Feury gave for me in May, of 2001.
Ron was working in Los Angeles so he couldn't be there.
Starting from left to right, that's Lee and Joey and Iva......That was the last time I was in New York. 

It's funny how that works sometimes----people move back to New York, and then they get a series, which shoots here in L.A.!

That's Show Business!

And below....Iva and Ron at my 75th Birthday in 2006......

That was the last time I saw them.....but we do talk on the phone......I love the phone! There is nothing like hearing a dear loved ones voice on the phone.....

And just one more picture of Ron's truly Beautiful 1979 English Garden...........

More To Come.........

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Name: OldOldLady Of The Hills
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