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Black Tie International:
On The Town With Aubrey Reuben -March 15, 2014


Aubrey Reuben

On the Town With Aubrey Reuben
Where All the Stars Shine Brightly!
March 15, 2014


03-11-14 Cast members (L-R) Steven Boyer. Sarah Steele. Marc Kudisch. Geneva Carr. Michael Oberholtzer at the opening night party for "Hand to God" at 49 Grove. 49 Grove St. Monday night. 03-10-14.  photo by:  aubrey reuben

03-11-14 Cast members (L-R) Steven Boyer. Sarah Steele. Marc Kudisch. Geneva Carr. Michael Oberholtzer at the opening night party for "Hand to God" at 49 Grove. 49 Grove St. Monday night. 03-10-14

On Broadway, against all odds, a film about boxing has become an entertaining Broadway musical. Rocky, book by Thomas Meehan and Sylvester Stallone, music by Stephen Flaherty, lyrics by Lynn Ahrens, follows the film, about a down and out loser (a superb Andy Karl) who miraculously gets a chance for a championship fight with the heavyweight champion of the world (Terence Archie). It is also his love story with a shy girl (Margo Seibert), who sings magnificently in her Broadway debut. The scenic design of Christopher Barreca is spectacular in the finale, when a boxing ring materializes in the audience. You have to see it to believe it, as you witness the fight itself. Director Alex Timbers, and choreographers Steven Hoggett and Kelly Devine deliver a knockout ending to a pleasant show.

Off-Broadway, Hand of God, by Robert Askins, received rave reviews when it appeared Off-Off-Broadway, They were well deserved. Its revival at the Lucille Lortel Theatre is equally fine, with a brilliant performance by Steven Boyer as a student with a satanic puppet, who causes mayhem at a church pageant. The opening night party was held at 49 Grove with guests like Judith Light and Terrence McNally.

50 Shades! The Musical, at the Elektra Theatre at the Times Square Arts Center, is an amusing musical, based on the best selling novel of the same title. The songs are pleasant, and a large cast is talented and attractive. It is an enjoyable evening. The opening night party took place at the theatre

The New Group Annual Gala Bright Lights Off-Broadway honored Beth Henley and Geoff Rich at Tribeca Rooftop. Among the guests were Ed Harris, Amy Madigan, Bill Pullman, Holly Hunter, John Tartaglia, Tonya Pinkins and many more too numerous to mention. It was a joyous occasion.

I read Leggy Blonde, by Aviva Drescher, and I can heartily recommend it. Her memoir is fascinating and sad, with a happy ending with her fame as a cast member ofReal Housewives of New York. There was book signing party at the Angelo David Salon, 48 East 43rd St, but as I had a  theatre opening, I was forced to leave before the author arrived. It was a pity as I wanted to congratulate her and photograph her.

I attended a preview of the First Annual Asia Art Fair March 14-18 at the Bohemian National Hall, 321 East 72rd St. Twenty-seven International Asian Art Galleries participated. All art and antiques lovers will love the fair.










































Film Society at Lincoln Center and MoMA is presenting press screenings of the 43rd Annual New Directors/New Films March 19-30. Return to Homs, by Talal Derki, Syria?Germany, 2013, is a heartbreaking documentary, about the civil war in Syria with the destruction  of the city of Homs. There are horrendous scenes of people being killed, and injured victims suffering in hospitals. It is a powerful film, revealing the senseless horror of civil war.

The Strange Little Cat (Das merkwurdige katzchen), by Ramon Zurcher, Germany, 2013, is a film about a family meal in a cramped apartment in Berlin. A mother tells a silly story about going to a movie. A cousin tells a silly story about trying  to read a book on vacation. A little girl is obnoxious. A dog barks loudly. A cat pays no attention to the self indulgent nonsense of this ridiculous extended family, where two people are slapped in the face for no apparent reason. To put it mildly, they are not pleasant company.

Youth, by Tom Shoval, Israel/Germany, 2013, is a film about two unattractive brothers, whose family is having economic difficulties. To acquire money, they decide to kidnap a wealthy young girl and demand a ransom. We see the miserable treatment of the victim by these brutal men. It is depressing to watch.

The Story of My Death (Historia de la Meva Moort). by Albert Serra, Spain/France, 2013, is an overlong film. It features a disgusting Casanova, whose bowel movements we are forced to watch, and Dracula, who appears for reasons only known to the self indulgent director. There are a number of pretty actresses, who are pawed over by Casanova. I do not see the point of this film, which has many scenes filmed in darkness, which is  hard on a viewer's eyes.

Fish & Cat, by Shahram Mokri, Iran, 2013, is a continuous shot as the camera follows two creepy restaurant workers, who specialize in serving human flesh, walking through a forest, where a group of students are preparing for a kite festival. Danger lies ahead for one of them. It is an interesting, intense, but slow moving film.

Salvation Army (L'Armee du Salut), by Abdellah Taia, France/Morocco/Switzerland, 2013, is in two  parts. In Morocco, a young teenager secretly engages in homosexual sex with various older men. Ten years later we see his relationship with a Swiss professor. It is an objective look at the restricted life in a large family in Part One, and the boy's life later as an adult. The film is well acted.

Trap Street (Shuiyin Jie), by Vivian Qu, China, 2013, begins as a romantic comedy, as a young trainee as a surveyor is attracted to a mysterious young lady. Suddenly, he is arrested without knowing why, interrogated, imprisoned, and his whole life changes. It is a remarkable film by an interesting director.

The Strange Color of Your Body's Tears, by Helen Cattet and Bruno Forzani, Belgium/France/Luxembourg, 2013, is a horror story, about a businessman, who returns to his apartment, and finds that his wife has disappeared. He searches the building, and has weird encounters with the strange tenants living in the different apartments. There are many scenic effects of cruelty, that will only please sadomasochists, and add nothing to the story. It is an exhausting and unpleasant film.

She's Lost Control, by Anja Marquardt, USA, 2014, is a film about a young psych major, who works as a sex surrogate. I did not know that this profession existed. We watch her sexual encounters with a variety of mentally disturbed men. The actress Brooke Bloom gives a fearless performance, on many occasions completely naked. Voyeurs may enjoy this film.

Salvo, by Fabio Grassadonia and Antonio Piazza, Italy/France, 2013, is a film about a tough mafioso in Palermo, who searches for the rival who wants him dead. He finds the rival's blind sister and falls in love with her. There is lots of violence and shootings in this unbelievable film.

20,000 Days on Earth, by Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard, Great Britain, 2014, is for fans of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. We watch the musician talking with his psychiatrist (I thought those sessions were confidential), recording an album, performing a concert in Australia, and talking with friends like Ray Winstone and Kylie Minogue in his car as he drives his car around Brighton. If you like his voice, songs, thoughts or Brighton, you may enjoy this partial documentary.

MoMA is presenting Vienna Unveiled: A City in Cinema through April 20. Wienfilm 1896-1976, by Ernst Schmidt, Austria, 1977, is a disappointing film, which instead of scenes of the past, spends much of the time on two children (I suppose they are the director's), and a man, who wanders around, occasionally with a monkey, thinking he is amusing, and is just irritating, and strangers in the street being asked silly questions. The occasional historical footage is interesting, and the songs sung by a famous singer from the past are pleasant and amusing.

03-11-14 Honoree playwright Beth Henley (L) and Holly Hunter at the New Group Annual Gala "Bright Lights OffBroadway at Tribeca Rooftip. 2 Desbrosses St. Monday night. 03-10-14.  photo by: aubrey reuben

03-11-14 Honoree playwright Beth Henley (L) and Holly Hunter at the New Group Annual Gala "Bright Lights Off Broadway at Tribeca Rooftop. 2 Desbrosses St. Monday night. 03-10-14






joyce brooks, gerard mckeon.  photo by:  rose billings

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