Marie writes: Having recently seen a stage play, I was reminded again of how much I enjoy them. And the buildings they're often performed in. Which sent me off looking for old ones and hopefully Theatres you never hear about - as then it's like stumbling upon a secret known only to a lucky few. And thus how I found "Minack Theatre Portcurno Cornwall" with a view over-looking the Cornish sea...
In a Coen Brothers movie every pause and stutter, every "um" and grammatical (mis-)construction, every repetition and idiosyncratic pronunciation, is inscribed like a note on a musical staff. The composer-conductors write the music, indicate the pitch, tempo and duration of each passage, and the select musicians -- soloists and ensemble players -- attack their assigned parts with the virtuoso flair for which they are known. As composers have often written works specifically suited to the talents of their favorite musicians, so the Coens frequently write roles tailored to the individual actors they want to work with.
"Burn After Reading" is a deft little piece, directed with a straight face and performed with a roiling comedic energy that matches brio with precision. That's what makes it funny. Emmanuel Lebezki's cinematography, Carter Burwell's score, Roderick Jaynes' editing (yes, we all know that's a pseudonym) could proudly serve any modern espionage picture. All serve a ridiculously plotted absurdist farce, which is what the best spy stories usually boil down to, whether they're comic or tragic.
HOLLYWOOD - Out in Devil's Gulch on the back lot at Warner Brothers, where Josh Logan is making "Camelot" with the whole studio hanging over his shoulders, David Hemmings sits in his dressing room and waits. It is a good time of year for waiting, not too hot, 65 or 70, the sun falling lazily on the green hills of Hollywood. Hemmings came out here four months ago to play Mordred, King Arthur's illegitimate son, and in that space of time he has worked, oh, maybe four days. The wait has given Hemmings an opportunity to feel out Los Angeles, to shape the dimensions of this strange new world, and to grow his own wispy beard to replace the makeup man's.