February 5, 2010 |
Is it better to read "Love Story" by the late Erich Segal, who died recently, or "Hamlet," by the really late playwright William Shakespeare? The answer seems obvious to most educated people. "Hamlet" is the world's greatest tragedy; "Love Story" is trash. But they are both classics. Yes, both. If a classic stands the test of time, "Hamlet" needs no defense. And as this high school English teacher can attest, "Love Story" still resonates with teenagers 40 years after it was written.
March 30, 2006
In light of Leslie Billera's extensive experience with dates who never call her -- indeed, who disappear completely ["Where'd He Go? Don't Wanna Know," March 16] -- perhaps she is a modern-day Katherine ("Taming of the Shrew"). And unless Daddy has money, she may have to wait a long time for her Petruchio. "The lady doth protest too much, methinks." ("Hamlet") Yes, all the dating world is a stage. But I suspect she could be a better player. PATT TODD Northridge
December 9, 2000
So now another set of anonymous electors is going to tell us which movies are the winners ("AFI Jumps Into the Annual Film Awards Derby," by Robert W. Welkos, Dec. 5). As a discerning moviegoer, I feel disenfranchised. Why doesn't my vote count? Here's my list of must contenders for the Oscars and other awards: "Aimee and Jaguar," "Almost Famous," "Erin Brockovich," "The Contender," "Hamlet," "High Fidelity," "Into the Arms of Strangers," "Men of Honor," "Sunshine" and "You Can Count on Me."
January 13, 2008 |
Charles AND MARY LAMB demonstrated in the early 19th century what J.K. Rowling, Philip Pullman, Lemony Snicket and so many others know today: The children's market is profitable. The Lambs turned their affection for the Bard of Stratford-on-Avon into "Tales From Shakespeare" (Penguin: 270 pp., $12 paper), newly reissued with an introduction by critic Marina Warner. "[W]riting for children began as hackwork for survival," Warner explains, though the brother and sister soon enjoyed it and went on to write other books after the success of "Tales.
June 15, 1991 |
Bill Streib's "Headset," at the Richard Basehart Playhouse in Woodland Hills, is a dandy example of a clever idea gone amok. Conceived by Streib and director Thomas White, it purports to be about the relationship between a young man and his stepfather in a theater's sound booth, which parallels the production of "Hamlet" taking place below.
June 11, 2000 |
If Shakespeare were alive, he might well boast Michael Ovitz as his manager, a three-picture first-look deal with Miramax, or his own production company on the lot of a major motion picture studio. From a pumped-up "Romeo + Juliet" to a fascist-era take on "Richard III," new visions of the Bard keep appearing on screen. The two latest film adaptations of his plays are currently in theaters.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 30, 2000 |
So. I begin our conversation as Seamus Heaney opens his new translation of "Beowulf." Earlier versions of this Anglo-Saxon epic poem begin with the engaging command: "Listen!" "So" is a settling-in word. We have been talking of other things; now we move to this. We know some things; we admit them and now start from that base. It sounds like we are friends. The dinner dishes are cleared. We can talk. So. Perhaps my absorption with this small word reveals me as a teacher. Can't I let it go?
October 7, 1987 |
After attending a series of sodden Fringe theater events, I've got Fringe-around-the-collar. Judging from the theater programming, the Fringe was a public relations gesture rather than an artistic endeavor. Its primary purpose was to give local artists and would-be artists the impression that they were somehow part of the Los Angeles Festival. Perhaps this was therapeutic for the participants (although a few dissenters complained that Fringe status wasn't good enough).
December 29, 1992
Here's the best of what Orange County theater had to offer in 1992: PRODUCTION, DRAMA: * "Woman in Mind," by Alan Ayckbourn, (South Coast Repertory Mainstage). * "Odd Jobs," by Frank Moher, (South Coast Repertory Second Stage). PRODUCTION, COMEDY: * "The Man Who Came to Dinner," by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart, (SCR Mainstage).