Monday, March 28, 2011

****new release list no.313

Dobrodošli moji Slovenski prijatelji!

Elizabeth Taylor died last Wednesday, she was just one month past her 79th birthday. Just about any film lover will have some iconic film memory of Liz. Whether it is her slinking around in a nightgown as Maggie in the screen adaptation of Tennessee William’s brilliant play CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF, or her powerful (and Academy Award-winning) performance as Martha in WHO’S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF?, she left nothing on the table as she poured her heart and soul into both her acting career and her life. She starred in 1943 in LASSIE COME HOME and then became a star as Velvet Brown in 1944’s NATIONAL VELVET.

She captured the film world's hearts as a child actor and very smoothly made the transition to movie star, even being nominated at one point for the Best Actress Academy Award four years in a row (including one of my favorite performances in SUDDENLY, LAST SUMMER with Montgomery Clift and Katherine Hepburn)! She worked steadily and effectively through the 80’s and then did a bit of work in the 90’s before finishing her career in 2001. Liz Taylor was a movie star’s movie star, the heights she reached have rarely been attained.

Yet, for all of that, for all her talent and beauty and notoriety and for all the 70 some-odd titles she worked on, what really blows me away was something that Elizabeth Taylor did off-screen. In the early 1980’s when AIDS was first being discussed (and condemned and misinformed and ignored) Liz Taylor was one of the first people to publicly speak out against this epidemic and to use her celebrity to publicize the plight of the millions of people who were suffering in the dark at that time. She organized and hosted the first ever AIDS fundraiser benefitting AIDS Project Los Angeles. She spoke out against the widespread ignorance of the establishment and to fight for rights for people dealing with what was then a supremely fatal illness. She was responsible for helping to raise over $100 million dollars to fund AIDS research, and she helped found multiple foundations that worked tirelessly for that cause. In a time where people were scrambling to disassociate themselves from people who were dying from a so-called “gay” disease, Elizabeth Taylor put herself and her reputation on the line to get the medical help needed to get control of what turned out to eventually kill millions of heterosexuals across the earth.

How cool is that? To me, that is the ultimate cool. In a world where celebrities keep their mouths shut to avoid alienating potential consumers, where Michael Jordan once famously declared “Republicans buy sneakers, too” to defend his silence on any political issue, where many wealthy celebrities just work to protect their own reputations, Elizabeth Taylor said fuck that, people are dying and I will do anything in my power to find a cure. And her power was great.

So I say thank you, Elizabeth Taylor. You were a brilliant actor, a beautiful person, you provided the news machine with many a headline, and you helped countless people survive a terrible disease. Thanks, Liz.

I just have a list of movies coming out this week, including BLACK SWAN, MAD MEN SEASON FOUR, TREME – THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON, and bunches of cool looking documentaries. I am out for a short break to see the sun shine down like a beacon of glory over Colorado. See you next weekend.

Love and Kisses,

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............//NEW RELEASES//............

ALL GOOD THINGS. - Ryan Gosling, Kirsten Dunst – looks awesome!

BLACK SWAN.****BD**** Academy Award nominated starring Natalie Portman.



FAIR GAME.****BD**** - Naomi Watts, Sean Penn…





MAD MEN: SEASON FOUR.****BD**** I think you’ve heard of this one…




SOYLENT GREEN. On****BD***, baby!


TANGLED. - This is supposed to be a good animation.


TREME: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON. - This is a highly anticipated new series from HBO about New Orleans.

WHO’S THE CABOOSE. - Sarah Silverman, among others.

THE WALKING DEAD: SEASON ONE. - I think some of you will like this zombie show.


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