Friday, November 27, 2015

Donald Trump: Raging Id

Donald Trump Free of Hairspray
We have reached the point where Donald Trump is no longer a joke, but a threat to civilized discourse and the political process. He has become the raging id of the American public like the invisible monster in Forbidden Planet which is really Walter Pidgeon's subconscious. No matter what outrageous, childish thing he says, his supporters still favor him. Many pundits are saying none of the traditional rules of politics or even civility apply to Trump and the media lets him get away with all kinds of incredible lies, distortions, evasions, and exaggerations. (Where in New Jersey did he personally see thousands of people cheering for the Twin Towers falling? He said he personally saw this, not film of it on TV.)

I've concluded that a certain percentage of US voters wants to be like Trump. They want their racist, sexist, entitled white male identity to go unchecked and unchallenged. Like schoolyard bullies, they want to be able to make fun of disabled people, foreigners, women, gays, anyone with a difference or expressing an opposing viewpoint, without being called on it by the teacher and made to stand in the corner. They want say Merry Christmas instead of Happy Holidays and not feel guilty about it--and they want to force everyone else to say Merry Christmas. (Trump said at a rally-"When I'm president, everyone will say Merry Christmas" How is he going to accomplish that? With a Christmas micro-chip implanted in our brains and we get a shock if we say Happy Holidays?)

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Roundabout to Present 'Holiday Inn' and 'Cherry Orchard'; Streaming Stars at the Drama Desk Jubilee

Holiday Inn with Bing Crosby, Marjorie Reynolds,
Fred Astaire, and Virginia Dale, will serve
as the basis of a new Broadway musical.
Roundabout Theater Company will present a new stage version of the 1942 movie musical Holiday Inn. The score features such Irving Berlin classics as "Cheek to Cheek," "Easter Parade," and "Shakin' the Blues Away." Previews begin Sept. 1, 2016 for an Oct. 13 opening. Press materials indicate the plot will follow the original film relatively closely. The story focuses on crooner Jim who wants to quit the show-biz rat race and settle down on a Connecticut farm and only do shows during the holidays from New Year's to July 4 to Christmas. He falls in love with singer Linda (Marjorie Reynolds) but fears she will be stolen away to big bad Hollywood by his former partner Ted (Fred Astaire). How will they handle the minstrel show sequence for Abraham Lincoln's birthday? In the original film, Crosby as Jim wears blackface and forces Linda to don it also so that Ted will not recognize her (Ted showed up on New Year's Eve and danced with her but was so drunk he didn't find out her name, but he would remember her face). This leads to a whole production number with Crosby, Marjorie Reynolds and the entire white chorus in blackface singing the praises of Lincoln while offstage the housekeeper Louise Beavers joins in. It's pretty offensive and indicative of the casual racism of the era. When they would show the movie on TV when I was growing up, the local Phila. station would usually cut the offending number. They'll probably cut the whole thing. This production premiered at Goodspeed in 2014.