Category Archives: Movies

The Estate of Charles Manson

Issues of confidentiality, centering on the amount of the bribe and who received it, prevent me from revealing how I get into the Bakersfield morgue and in front of a long metallic drawer containing Charles Manson whom I pull out and address, “I know you’ve got a right to privacy, but I have some important […]

Also posted in Charles Manson, Drugs, Guns N' Roses, LSD, Murder, Music, Roman Polanski, Sharon Tate

Manila Bulletin Posts “Inside Harvey Weinstein”

Jose Abeta Zaide, former Philippine Ambassador to Germany and current columnist for the Manila Bulletin, has again reprinted on of my columns, this one titled “Inside Harvey Weinstein.” “Inside Harvey Weinstein” in the Manila Bulletin “In Other Hands” by George Thomas Clark

Also posted in Harvey Weinstein, Jose Abeto Zaide, Sex

Inside Harvey Weinstein

I love these parties celebrating my movies that have generated more than three hundred Oscar nominations. I’m the guy everyone wants to talk to. I confess it wasn’t like that in high school or college or when I started in show business as a concert promoter. I saw those looks a million times: hey, you’re […]

Also posted in Harvey Weinstein, Hollywood, Los Angeles, Sex

Hemingway v. Fitzgerald

As a young screenwriter who helped but a little on the script of a recent movie featuring Frederic March, I’m stunned the star invites me to his lavish Beverly Hills home to watch a screening of the documentary The Spanish Earth written and narrated by Ernest Hemingway, who Frederic says will be there along with […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Frederic March, Mental Health, Spain, Writers

Heath Ledger to Tiger Woods

Dear Tiger, I’m not going to preach, from a faraway place, but I’m damn well going to tell you about prescription drug abuse. You may know I’ve been gone more than nine years now, and like you mixed drugs that taken together dramatically increase their effects and stop many young, strong hearts. Choose any statistics […]

Also posted in Drugs, Elvis Presley, Golf, Heath Ledger, Mental Health, Tiger Woods

Loving Lana Turner

I’m just Judy Turner being followed by boys down the halls of Hollywood High and that’s pretty good but not nearly as exciting as when a reporter spots me cutting class in a cafe and sends me to an agent. Right away MGM signs me and says I’m one of the most beautiful women in […]

Also posted in Artie Shaw, Divorce, Infidelity, Lana Turner, Los Angeles, Marriage, Sex

Vivien Leigh in the Hotel

I work at a great Manhattan hotel whose name I better not mention. I’m just a bellhop but only twenty-two and know I’m going to have a great job someday. Today, I’m rolling a cart with the luggage of a special guest: she’s Vivien Leigh, Scarlett O’Hara in the flesh, and almost as beautiful now […]

Also posted in Laurence Olivier, Mental Health, Vivien Leigh

Dating Louise Brooks

People have been telling me. That’s her. Louise Brooks is selling clothes at Saks Fifth Avenue. I probably would’ve recognized her, though she no longer wears the luminous black helmet hairdo she had when I loved her in the late twenties. I would’ve married her on the first date, if I could’ve gotten one, when […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Louise Brooks, Sex

Gable on the Links

On a hot summer afternoon in the early sixties I’m standing on the green of a Sacramento public golf course and preparing to line up my putt when I glance right of the green at the maintenance man carrying a long sprinkler head. He’s sweating and looks tired and gray like Clark Gable did before […]

Also posted in Clark Gable, Golf, Sacramento

Bogey Greets the Prince

“Mike, where’s my invitation to meet the prince?” “Sorry, Bogey, but only my most cultured clients will be there,” said Beverly Hills restaurateur Mike Romanoff. “I’ve never met a real European prince and damn well want to.” “You’d embarrass me.” “The prince would be impressed to meet a movie star.” “There’ll be a lot of […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Hubert Humphrey, Tobacco

Walter Challenges Margaret Keane

All right. You’ve read them. You should have. There are plenty of interviews when Margaret Keane admits she wouldn’t have had a career in art unless I’d virtually swept her off the streets and romanced and married her while teaching her to paint and permitting her to accompany me to exhibitions and benefit from the […]

Also posted in El Greco, Jerry Lewis, Margaret Keane, Painters, Tim Burton

Streep Invades Trump Tower

I sense tweeting and TV blasting won’t be sufficient so in a radical Hollywood jet I fly to New York and ride in a five-limousine caravan to Trump Tower where I exit and announce, “Meryl Streep to see President-elect Trump.” “You aren’t really Meryl Streep, are you?” says a secret service agent. “Indeed I am.” […]

Also posted in Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, Immigration, Jeff Sessions, Meryl Streep, Mexico

Madonna v. Jennifer Lopez

Eager to impress fair Kayla, I jack up big green on the secondary market to acquire two VIP seats for Madonna’s concert at Madison Square Garden. I wear my best and only suit, and Kayla styles herself in a long sleek dress sophisticated New York fans will admire. “Look,” she whispers, slightly moving her head […]

Also posted in Boxing, Dance, Jennifer Lopez, Madison Square Garden, Madonna, Music, New York City

Introduction on a Train

This story is now in the collection “Tales of Romance”

Also posted in Bing Crosby, Divorce, Los Angeles, Marriage, Romance, San Francisco

Cary Grant and His Brides

This story is now in the collection “Tales of Romance”

Also posted in Barbara Hutton, Cary Grant, Divorce, Dyan Cannon, Sophia Loren

The Battling Bogarts

“Give us two more.” “Sure, Bogey” I say. “Make em triples,” says Mayo Methot. “I told you, go easy.” “You drink faster.” I look at Bogey. He nods. I return and put the drinks on their table. They blow smoke at each other. “Maybe you should go back to work.” Mayo swigs half her drink […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, Mayo Methot, Tobacco

Alfred Hitchcock v. Tippi Hedren

I don’t like birds but was quite young and wanted to become a director and one of Alfred Hitchcock’s assistants hired me to work on the set of The Birds and care for his snake-eyed creatures. “As we shall begin filming the climactic scene tomorrow, make sure you don’t give nourishment of any kind to […]

Also posted in Alfred Hitchcock, Birds, Boxing, Tippi Hedren

Melina on Sunday

This story appears in the collection “In Other Hands”

Also posted in Greece, Jules Dassom, Melina Mercouri, Pablo Picasso, Painters, Pimps, Prostitution, Sex, Slavery

Trump Documentary Thrills Voters

This story is from the rousing campaign book “King Donald”

Also posted in Campaign 2016, Donald Trump, Johnny Depp, New York City, Ron Howard

Chapo Guzman Returns to Prison

“I’m in charge of Altiplano prison, Chapo, and didn’t come here because you asked. Or did you think you ordered me? Remember, the director who preceded me, and helped you escape, is locked in a nearby cell and will doubtless be incarcerated the rest of his life, as will you.” “Of course, comandante. I’m honored […]

Also posted in Chapo Guzman, Drugs, Mexico, Murder, Prisons

Johnny Goes Vegas

This story is in the collection “Basketball and Football”

Also posted in Alcohol, Cleveland, Concussions, Football, Johnny Manziel, Las Vegas

Errol Flynn v. John Huston

I don’t know how much I’d had to drink but always drank too much at Hollywood parties because I feared the beautiful and talented actresses there were a bit more wonderful than I, and that I’d only be a walk-on as long as I lasted and that wouldn’t be long, and then I’d have to […]

Also posted in Bette Davis, Bob Fitzsimmons, Boxing, Errol Flynn, Jim Corbett, John Huston, Los Angeles, Warner Brothers

Bogie in Brief

Dad’s a great guy and doctor until investments plunge and morphine soars. Mother paints pretty children far from her nerves. One sister dies young the other’s not right. I escape to Broadway where some call me next Valentino. After plays I caress ladies smoking and drinking till dawn. First time in Hollywood executives ignore me […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Cancer, Frank Sinatra, Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, Music, Smoking, Tobacco

The Las Vegas Lakers

Have to admit, I don’t sit courtside when I go to Lakers games in Staples Center. I suppose I could once a year, if I find two tickets, but it would lighten me a month’s salary, so I sit up about twenty rows and that isn’t cheap either but is doable a few times a […]

Also posted in Basketball, D'Angelo Russell, Jack Nicholson, James Worthy, Jordan Clarkson, Julius Randle, Kareem Abdul Jabbar, Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles, Los Angeles Lakers

Klimt Paints Gold

“Herr Klimt, you certainly prepare most thoroughly.” “Always, and especially for you, Frau Bloch-Bauer.” “How much longer will it take?” “Much of that depends on you, Madame. I believe I’ll need two hundred sketches and dozens of sittings. You don’t find your time with me unpleasant, I hope.” “On the contrary, I very much look […]

Also posted in Adele Bloch-Bauer, Austria, Gustav Klimt, Helen Mirren, Painters, Vienna, World War II

Carmel Winter

This story appears in the collection “In Other Hands”

Also posted in Boston, Caribbean, Del Mar, Economics, Housing, Ingmar Bergman, Philippines, Russia, San Diego, Weather

Chris Kyle Reloads

I’d like to thank Clint Eastwood for making a movie about me and being so nice to my wife and kids, but I want to correct the impression he gives in his column, as well as in American Sniper, that I was a weak man tortured because I killed so many people. That ain’t so. […]

Also posted in American Sniper, Chris Kyle, Clint Eastwood, George W. Bush, Iraq, PTSD, Saddam Hussein

Eastwood Battles American Snipers

I usually don’t spend much time arguing with critics of my movies and I’m not going to today. I’ll just refute those who accuse me of glorifying war or, at minimum, celebrating a man they scream online was a “psychopathic killer.” Listen, I’m not trying to transform Chris Kyle, the American Sniper who killed more […]

Also posted in American Sniper, Chris Kyle, Clint Eastwood, George W. Bush, Iraq, PTSD, Saddam Hussein

James Garner Mellows Out

I know people think I’m confident and easygoing and maybe I am, now, as an adult but as a kid in Norman, Oklahoma I was scared a lot especially after my mother died and my dad married a horrible woman who beat hell out of my two brothers and me and sometimes made me wear […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Cocaine, Games Garner, John Belushi, Marijuana, Television

Wallace Beery v. The Bellhop

A couple of weeks earlier I’d gotten this great job as a bellhop at one of the finest hotels in Pasadena. I loved coming to work in a clean uniform and not having to work outside getting hot and dirty with a bunch of grubby men. In the hotel all the guests looked important, and […]

Also posted in Boxing, Gloria Swanson, Pasadena, Rape, Wallace Beery

Lupe Velez v. Dolores del Rio

I’m a lover and hate people who say in Mexico City my mother rented my teenage body. That’s a lie. I was always a good singer and comedienne and first appeared in Hollywood films before turning twenty. I’ve loved many leading men and others and still do and for a few years adored Gary Cooper […]

Also posted in Boxing, Depression, Dolores del Rio, Gary Cooper, Johnny Weismuller, Lupe Velez, Mental Health, Orson Welles, Suicide

Sophia Loren v. Jayne Mansfield

By delightful coincidence I was dining in elegant Romanoff’s restaurant in Beverly Hills that 1957 night when young and ravishing Sophia Loren entered, accompanied by several movie executives who, once seated, gazed across satin tablecloth and widened omnipresent smiles, laughing at her every utterance. I understand their behavior for I was equally captivated by the […]

Also posted in Boxing, Cary Grant, Frank Sinatra, Jayne Mansfield, Los Angeles, Mike Romanoff, Sophia Loren

Philip Seymour Hoffman

don’t want whole beer only half enough to fall

Also posted in Alcohol, Drugs, Heroin, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Poetry - GTC, Truman Capote, Writers

Flight of Insanity

During my recent trip to Spain film director Pedro Almodóvar calls and invites me to join him on a short flight from Madrid to Marbella. Since I’ve never flown first class or met movie celebrities, I accept, figuring I’ll learn much about filmmaking. What a horrific misconception. First, I can’t find Pedro, and the flight […]

Also posted in Homosexuals, Mental Health, Pedro Almodovar, Planes

Las Vegas Hell Motel

Fritz and Ida go to bed early, arise refreshed, eat good breakfast, and then grit teeth before driving east to enter Mojave Desert where dry death and hot existence always depress, but they can’t afford flight to Las Vegas for NBA summer league. Thankfully, they’ve reserved good motel, for three nights at fifty bucks per, […]

Also posted in Alfred Hitchcock, Basketball, Las Vegas, Mojave Desert, Motels, Psycho

Tickle

This story is now in the collection “Tales of Romance”

Also posted in Short Pieces - GTC

Castro District

Al wanted to be close to Jewish Film Festival. He didn’t want to worry about parking in San Francisco. He wanted to walk to Castro Theater. He got Spartan hotel room three windy blocks away. He needed good dinner before first of three movies that night. Around corner from theater he entered restaurant. Hello, love, […]

Also posted in Homosexuals, Jewish Film Festival, San Francisco, Short Pieces - GTC

Joan Bennett Allure

This story is now in the collection “Tales of Romance”

Also posted in Joan Bennett, Marriage, Short Pieces - GTC

Young Stuff

This story appears in the collection “In Other Hands”

Also posted in Cambodia, Child Molestation, Children, Prostitution, Sex, Slavery, Southeast Asia

John Wilkes Booth Today

We mustn’t permit deed of John Wilkes Booth to stand and therefore shall remove from time and place and raise today in theatrical family thriving in Manhattan and nod when Hollywood beckons splendid Booth who becomes movie star in early twenties making millions while he drinks and snorts and occasionally crashes cars but fires only […]

Also posted in Abraham Lincoln, Assassinations, Civil War - American, Edwin Booth, John Wilkes Booth, Los Angeles, New York City, Racism, Short Pieces - GTC, Slavery, Theater

Alarmed by “2016 Obama’s America”

This story is from the collection “Obama on Edge”

Also posted in Africa, Argentina, Barack Obama, Campaign 2012, Communism, Conservatives, Dinesh D'Souza, Economics, Europe, Jeremiah Wright, Kenya, Malaysia, Middle East, Nuclear Weapons, Palestine, Republicans, Ronald Reagan, Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin, Sean Hannity, Singapore, Socialism, South Africa

Distress in Polanco

This story is part of the collection “Paint it Blue” is try to find a bullfight.”

Also posted in Art, David Alfaro Siqueiros, Mexico, Mexico City, Murals, Painters, Polanco

Bakersfield at the Movies

Legions of teenagers and adults march into theater carrying troughs of buttered popcorn and sodas large enough for elephants, and guffaw during previews of teddy bear wrestling man, creamed pants jokes, president slicing face open to reveal he’s bullet-dodging, axe-wielding “Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter.” Amid chomping and slurping, I wonder how many here have watched […]

Also posted in Abraham Lincoln, Bakersfield, Food, Los Angeles, Short Pieces - GTC

General Aladeen Assails Sacha Baron Cohen and “The Dictator”

Obscene, self-righteous, and unfunny Sacha Baron Cohen has earned a few hundred million dollars, in movies “Borat” and “Bruno,” by insulting rubes in Kazakhstan and the United States, and then either deflecting or burying their lawsuits. Now you can be assured that I, General Aladeen, supreme leader of Wadiya, will by all necessary means forever […]

Also posted in Borat, Middle East, Oil, Sacha Baron Cohen, Terrorism

Bullies on Screen

Millions are bullied at school every year. Documentary film Bully studies several. Let’s focus on two. Bespectacled Alex is skinny, awkward, and nervous. He likes learning but says has trouble making friends, and when tries on school bus, bigger boy says, we’re not friends, I’ll shove broomstick up ass. Alex’s father lectures nobody respects punching […]

Also posted in Bullying, Education, Mental Health, Short Pieces - GTC, Suicide

At Movies

This story is now in the collection “Tales of Romance”

Also posted in Marriage, Short Pieces - GTC

Supermarket Bulletins – Part 2

in supermarket checkout line headlines and color photos pronounce this star’s fatter than you that one’s more wrinkled both had botched plastic surgery another’s anorexic he’s drunk they’re addicted she’s in treatment he’s in jail she’s spendthrift he’s abusive she’s vain he’s unfaithful so’s she wonder what rag publishers are like

Also posted in Poetry - GTC, Publications

Joan Bennett Allure

This story is now in the collection “Tales of Romance”

Also posted in Joan Bennett, Marriage, Poetry - GTC, Sex

John Wilkes Booth Today

mustn’t permit deed of john wilkes booth to stand instead remove from that time and place and raise today in theatrical family thriving in manhattan and nod when hollywood beckons splendid booth becomes movie star in his early twenties making millions while drinks snorts and occasionally crashes cars but fires only slurred words To see […]

Also posted in Abraham Lincoln, Assassinations, Civil War - American, Edwin Booth, John Wilkes Booth, Los Angeles, New York City, Poetry - GTC, Racism, Slavery, Theater

Sherlock Holmes Needs Straightjacket

new sherlock holmes movie maniacal high tech farce detective robert downey relentlessly overbearing bakersfield patrons quite pleased

Also posted in Bakersfield, Poetry - GTC, Robert Downey

Fallen Star

Producers and directors often exhorted Martin Stevens to beat or at least be like Errol Flynn, and that seemed attainable. In terms of facial structure, Martin looked as if Flynn had fathered him. Hell, maybe he did. So the sequence was logical enough. Martin was outfitted in tights in his first starring film role and […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Arnella Flynn, Beverly Aadland, Drugs, Errol Flynn, Homeless, Humphrey Bogart, Jack Warner, Lili Damita, Mental Health, Short Stories - GTC, The Bold Investor, Warner Brothers

Flowers for Errol Flynn

on sunny forest lawn fresh pink flowers lie across errol flynn caressed by lady lost in distant dreams To read “Fallen Star,” a story about a disturbed actor who looks like Errol Flynn, please click here To read “Arnella Flynn, Too Much Like Errol,” please click here

Also posted in Alcohol, Errol Flynn, Fallen Star, Los Angeles, Poetry - GTC

Getting to Madrid

My journey to Madrid began on a Sunday morning as I drove from blistering Bakersfield down Highway 99 toward Los Angeles and punched sports talk radio but heard an ESPN guy strain to be funny and cool but sounding lame: most jockeys lack comedic skills and can’t sustain the purported subject matter of their shows. […]

Also posted in Bakersfield, Barack Obama, Dennis Miller, George Thomas Clark, George W. Bush, Los Angeles, Madrid, Madrid Vacation, Mexico, Michelle Williams, Pornography, Radio, Ryan Gossling, Spain, Travel

Hemingway Fifty Years Dead

Early morning on a July second Ernest Hemingway, battered by decades of alcoholism, assailed by a brain injured in one car and two plane crashes, haunted by a lifelong fear of inherited mental illness and certain that it and rapid aging had forever rendered him paranoid and defeated, quietly arose from a bedroom separate from […]

Also posted in Art, Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, France, Julian Barnes, Pablo Picasso, Paris, Woody Allen, Writers

Inside Job

This story appears in the collection “In Other Hands”

Also posted in Alan Greenspan, Barack Obama, Ben Bernanke, Debt, Economics, Federal Reserve, John Glenn, John McCain, Lawrence Summers, Matt Damon, Ronald Reagan

Arnold Schwarzenegger Must be President

I know many of you believe I failed as Governor of California and am now indisputably a cur since I fathered a child, now age thirteen, with a member of my domestic household staff. You sympathize with my wife, Maria Shriver, because she long endured my infidelities and didn’t learn of this one until recently, […]

Also posted in Arnold Schwarzenegger, Barack Obama, Bodybuilding, California, Debt, Economics, George W. Bush, Maria Shriver, Marriage, Real Estate

Refuting Andre Dubus

An acquaintance who’s a stripper in the hardscrabble Merrimack River valley north of Boston recently invited me to her club to meet a man called Devin Wallace in the memoir “Townie” by Andre Dubus III, son of the esteemed short story writer, now deceased, and himself an author of three novels and a collection of […]

Also posted in Andre Dubus, Boston, Housing, Marriage, Massachusetts, Neighborhoods, Writers

Son of John Gotti

I hereby celebrate avoiding every commercial during the Super Bowl between the wildcard Green Bay Packers and the hardscrabble Pittsburgh Steelers. I didn’t have to dodge any pitches during the first third of the game since I overslept as I battled sinusitis. Joining the showdown with the Pack leading fourteen to three, I thereafter held […]

Also posted in 60 Minutes, Advertisements, Commercials, Crime, John Gotti, John Travolta, Kidnapping, Media, Murder, New York City, Organized Crime, Television

The Flowers of Seraphine Louis

This story is part of the collection “Paint it Blue”

Also posted in Art, France, Germany, Mental Health, Museums, Painters, Paris, Seraphine Louis

My So-Called Enemy

You’re invited. Tune in to “My So-Called Enemy” in the summer of 2002 at a retreat in gentrified New Jersey where for ten days teenage girls from Israel and Palestine are gathered to discuss their lives, seek common ground, and learn conflict resolution skills. The latter two goals are challenging. It’s the second year of […]

Also posted in Ariel Sharon, Bay Area, Documentaries, Israel, Jewish Film Festival, Jews, Middle East, Palestine, Women's Rights, Yasser Arafat

Budrus 2099

I’m tired of my parents telling me how lucky I am to live in a country with the highest per capita income in the world. I’m bored with reminders that life is infinitely easier for me than it was for my great grandparents. Too often I must endure the same stories about how they risked […]

Also posted in Bay Area, Documentaries, Israel, Jewish Film Festival, Jews, Middle East, Palestine, Women's Rights

Joseph Goebbels Watches A Film Unfinished

May 1942 is an extraordinary time. In the East, ideally situated after our invasion last year devoured thousands of square miles of the Soviet Union and enabled us to kill and capture several million enemy soldiers, we are resuming offensives and will soon surely have the Russian colossus on its knees. In North Africa General […]

Also posted in Bay Area, Documentaries, Douglas MacArthur, Germany, Holocaust, Israel, Jewish Film Festival, Jews, Joseph Goebbels, Poland, San Francisco, Warsaw, World War II

Subject of A Clockwork Orange Refutes Stanley Kubrick

Don’t call me Alex DeLarge. I long ago changed my notorious name, and for that I cannot blame Stanley Kubrick since I would’ve hidden my identity even if he hadn’t directed A Clockwork Orange, the film purportedly about my life. What I do forever excoriate Kubrick for is misrepresenting and exaggerating my deeds, which had […]

Also posted in Crime, England, Ludwig van Beethoven, Mental Health, Murder, Music, Prisons, Stanley Kubrick

Time to Pay College Athletes

This story is in the collection “Basketball and Football”

Also posted in Basketball, Football, Golf, Heisman Trophy, Lebron James, Media, Michael Jackson, Music, NCAA, Newspapers, Racism, Radio, Reggie Bush, Shirley Temple, Stevie Wonder, Tiger Woods, USC

Benito Mussolini Reviews Vincere

They wouldn’t have made the movie Vincere in Italy when I was the Duce. If they tried, you know what I’d have done. The Duce did not permit unflattering articles, photos, speeches, or thoughts, and no one save a deranged and masochistic individual would have even contemplated thrashing me in a feature film. Ironicially, in […]

Also posted in Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, Italy, Mental Health

Food, Inc.

Welcome to Food, Inc. Your hunger will here be suppressed with high-tech nutrition that’s accelerated more the last fifty years than since the Stone Age.  Don’t be overwhelmed.  We know you weekly stroll through a typical supermarket’s forty-seven thousand products and enjoy the orderly world designed by a handful of giant companies that produce and […]

Also posted in Documentaries, Food

The Atomic Cafe

Welcome to The Atomic Café where we serve vivid images of tests from July 1945 Alamogordo leading to uncontested flight over Hiroshima about which crewman notes hard to conceive damage they’ve done. Smiling President Truman reports we’ve taken biggest scientific gamble in history, awful responsibility, and won, and thank God it’s our responsibility and not […]

Also posted in Documentaries, Nuclear Weapons, Short Pieces - GTC, War, Weapons

Harvest of Shame

This story appears in the collection “In Other Hands”

Also posted in Agriculture, Documentaries, Edward R. Murrow, Homeless, Humphrey Bogart, Media, Poverty, Radio, Television

The Story of Anvil

I hate this fucking drill so much I want to start smashing windows with it.  I should be on stage, hammering drums and exciting fans and musicians who think I, Robb Reiner, was about the best heavy metal drummer on the planet.  In 1984 Steve “Lips” Kudlow, our lead singer and my lifelong friend, and […]

Also posted in Anvil, Documentaries, Music

Michael Jackson This Is It

A movie of rehearsals in a big empty room can’t excite like concerts alive with screaming fans, but I still hope you enjoy This Is It because that’s what it is.  My dancers show why when we first gather in March.  Hundreds have come from all over the world to compete in rigorous auditions from […]

Also posted in Documentaries, Drugs, Mental Health, Michael Jackson, Music, Plastic Surgery

Born into Brothels

This story appears in the collection “In Other Hands”

Also posted in Documentaries, India, Prostitution

Historian Offers to Write Screenplay about Hitler Here

How pleased I recently was to receive an email with the subject “Screenplay” and addressed to “Illustrious Sir”.  The correspondent introduced himself with news he’d been reading my biographical novel Hitler Here and thought it was “great” and “what an ordeal (I) must have gone through to produce it.”  Since the book took twenty years […]

Also posted in Adolf Hitler, George Thomas Clark, Hitler Here, Holocaust, Jews, Racism, World War II

David Carradine: 1936:2009

When friends and I gathered in the mid 1970s for marijuana-fueled TV watching, we usually tuned to football, basketball, and boxing.  The only significant exceptions were episodes of Kung Fu, the legendary series in which Kwai Chang Caine, played by David Carradine, embraced the wise and soothing philosophies of Asian martial artists before he righteously, […]

Also posted in David Carradine, Sex

Richard Nixon Rebuts Frost/Nixon

Don’t for a second think I’m upset by this new Frost/Nixon movie.  My enemies again tried to get Nixon and again they failed.  Watch documentary films of my speeches and interviews and you’ll hear an unusually articulate politician.  Actor Frank Langella portrayed me as a stiff-necked and tormented bumbler.  If you know Nixon the leader, […]

Also posted in David Frost, Media, Politics, Richard Nixon

Heath Ledger and the Joker

I am weary of, though not entirely unamused by, the preferred psychoanalytic question about my posthumously-released role as the Joker in The Dark Knight. Fans gathered at my cinematic altar continue to ask: “Did playing that deranged criminal, and other cutting roles, drive you too far?” No, I explain, it was rather the opposite: my […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Depression, Drugs, Heath Ledger, Mental Health

Jewish Film Festival in the Bay Area

Baghdad Twist Don’t ask my age.  It’s none of your business, I told my son, and doesn’t concern people who’ll watch your documentary.  No one’s going to see me in this film.  They’ll only hear my voice.  Better they look at black and white photos of me as a child in reasonably hospitable Iraq where […]

Also posted in Bay Area, Iran, Israel, Jewish Film Festival, Jews, Palestine, San Francisco

Heath Ledger in Pain

Last November I said I feel good about dying now, at age twenty-eight, because I feel alive through my two-year old daughter Matilda. I quickly explained that didn’t mean I wanted to die; I wanted to be around for the rest of her life, and noted this was an interesting kind of little set up. […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Depression, Drugs, Heath Ledger, Mental Health

Joan Crawford Discusses Her Life and Movies

When I was alive the worst they called me was a bitch and a drunk.  Now, heathens with websites can, without attribution or fear of legal retribution, accuse me of dancing naked at age eighteen for a film clip to be used in mechanical peep shows and being arrested for prostitution in Detroit.  That’s ridiculous.  […]

Also posted in Academy Awards, Joan Crawford

Jack Palance Estate Auction

At age seventy-two, celebrating his Oscar for best supporting actor in City Slickers, Jack Palance launched himself onto the Academy Awards stage and cranked out several one-armed pushups.  I’d been proud to do those in my twenties.  Afterward, the two-armed variety was challenging enough, and before age forty I altogether abandoned the exercise as a […]

Also posted in Jack Palance

Letter to Talented and Troubled Lindsay Lohan

Dear Ms. Lohan, After grading about 400 English tests during the week and feeling increasingly tired and tense and lethargic, I didn’t want to write or exercise Saturday morning, as I usually do; I just wanted to shower and get out and relax at the movies.  Frequently, there aren’t many good ones in Bakersfield, primarily […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Bill Cosby, Depression, Drugs, Lindsay Lohan, Mental Health

Academy Award Winner “Marty” in 2007

In 1955 they release a movie about me called “Marty.”  I am embarrassed by the public opening of my private life but no more uncomfortable, really, than I am every day when people bombard me in the butcher shop where I work.  Marty, you’ve got a younger brother and three younger sisters who’re all married, […]

Also posted in Academy Awards, Ernest Borgnine

Victims of “Borat” Strike Back

Borat, the now infamous pseudo-journalist from Kazakhstan, beguiled many kind and trusting Americans into exposing themselves for his obscene documentary.  His victims have since been humiliated, scorned, beaten, sued and worse, and, as they align themselves for a landmark lawsuit, here for the first time they strike back at the man who so degraded them. […]

Also posted in Borat, Sacha Baron Cohen

President Ahmadinejad Praises “Borat”

In a letter to President Bush last spring I demonstrated profound understanding of United States foreign policy, and outlined many diplomatic steps that unrighteous nation must take to correct its barbaric behavior.  Nevertheless, I did not, as I should have, offer substantive commentary on American society and psychology.  I simply didn’t know much about them.  […]

Also posted in Borat, Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Sacha Baron Cohen

Mel Gibson to Bring Peace to Middle East

I’m an alcoholic.  I’ve been an alcoholic all my adult life, and my disease has been a battle.  I’ve battled it to stay sober and when intoxicated I’ve struggled to get drunker.  I’m the same as any other drunk.  It doesn’t matter that I’m rich and famous and handsome and a renowned authority on religious […]

Also posted in Jews, Mel Gibson, Middle East

President Bush Watches “The Battle of Algiers”

This story is from the collection “Echoes from Saddam Hussein”

Also posted in Algeria, George W. Bush

Save Sophie Scholl

This mission is going to be difficult and dangerous in the extreme, and only a resourceful person will have even a grim chance to complete the imperative task – save Sophie Scholl in 1943 Nazi Germany.  We are tired of receiving applicants to save Julia Jentsch, star of the new movie “Sophie Scholl: The Last […]

Also posted in Adolf Hitler, Sophie Scholl, World War II

Adolph Rupp on Integration

This story is in the collection “Basketball and Football”

Also posted in Adolph Rupp, Basketball, Racism

John Wayne Reviews “Brokeback Mountain”

I hadn’t had any offers in a long time, and these guys come to me and ask if I want to be in a western with lots of action.  Damn right, I say.  Don’t bother showing me the script.  Let’s just start rehearsing.  I tell them I don’t care if I play Ennis Del Mar […]

Also posted in Heath Ledger, Homosexuals, John Wayne

Poverty and Kidnapping in a Luxury Theater

You’re weary of suburban cineplexes and their silly car-crash-and-explosion movies with banal characters you watch while eating eternal candy, popcorn, and hot dogs.  You want a different movie experience.  Where do you go?  Get online and read about the ArcLight Theater.  Its location is certainly enticing – Sunset and Vine in Hollywood, still the epicenter […]

Arnella Flynn, Too Much Like Errol

For decades the inside cover of Parade magazine has been like it is today, a page glistening with faces of beautiful and famous people.  And as I write this, one of those pages stands out more than hundreds of others I’ve read.  It was from an early 1970’s issue and featured the delightful image of […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Arnella Flynn, Beverly Aadland, Drugs, Errol Flynn, Humphrey Bogart, Jack Warner, Lili Damita, Warner Brothers

Ronald Reagan, 1911-2004

Yesterday, for the first time, I missed the collection of about 300 old movies on Beta tapes I’d seen so often and given away three years earlier. I would like to have grabbed Santa Fe Trail and watched the dashing Ronald Reagan, then in his late twenties, play the supporting role of General George Custer.  […]

Also posted in Politics, Ronald Reagan

Arnold Acting on Budget

Doesn’t Arnold look good?  No matter what the camera angle or lightning, day or night, inside or outside, that rascal is chiseled and tanned and verily glowing with handsomeness and charm.  You know it.  He’s got a hell of a smile, too, at once split-front toothy and warm and empathetic.  It’s a smile full of […]

Also posted in Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bodybuilding, California, Debt, Economics