Archive for the ‘Entertainment’ Category

Cinevegas.com photo

We couldn’t resist visiting the CineVegas Film Festival again yesterday and watching the film Where I Stand. The movie told the story of Hank Greenspun and was so much more than what I was expecting. I knew the Greenspun name as a publisher here in Las Vegas, but Hank’s influence was felt in so much more.

From Brooklyn, NY, Hank moved to Las Vegas after serving in WWII and became a publicist, working with Bugsey Siegel. Over the next couple of decades, Hank was involved in so much, including smuggling weapons to Palestine as part of the Haganah (the details of that are just amazing), starting his own newspaper with his famous “Where I Stand” column (one upping his competitor whose was titled “Where I Sit”), publicly opposing Senator Joe McCarthy, being the founder of Nevada’s first television station, offering free services to subscribers who were audited by the IRS, and negotiating the buying of several casinos for Howard Hughes, which helped clean up Las Vegas from the mob.

There’s more, but since I’m not an expert, read this excerpt of the New York Time’s 1989 obituary:

“Mr. Greenspun’s dealings with Mr. Hughes gave him a small place in the history of the Watergate affair. J. Anthony Lukas, author of ”Nightmare: The Underside of the Nixon Years,” wrote that President Richard M. Nixon’s operatives planned a second burglary in addition to the famous one at the Democratic National Committee at the Watergate Hotel. The target was Mr. Greenspun’s safe at The Las Vegas Sun, which was believed to contain memos about dealings between Mr. Hughes and Bebe Rebozo, the former President’s close friend.” An audio tape is played in the movie of Nixon speaking of Greenspun and saying something like “Cris, everyone knows who Hank Greenspun is”.

Greenspun helped end the racial discrimination in Las Vegas (which I didn’t even know had existed). He was also very involved in trying to establish Middle East peace, but that was all a little bit above my head…You could tell he had friends in high places. Hank was very vocal on protecting citizens during the nuclear testing and the Yucca Mountain situation (again, another situation that I know little about). All while raising a family!

The director, Scott Goldstein, hopes to have national big screen distribution. This review of the movie doesn’t do it justice, but I think Hank is such an inspiration to us all (especially young people) that his story deserves to be shared.


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The bloggers of Lipstick Tracez

I just love trendcentral.com. This morning, their newsletter featured cool websites and included was Lipstick Tracez. The founder, Reggie Casagrande, wants to “provide a culture-rich, lifestyle-driven destination for women”. That already sounds refreshing and fabulous! A little bit more from the Trendcentral newsletter: “…she’s handpicked an arsenal of dynamic women, including entrepreneurs, artists, designers, journalists, educators, and other creative types, to continually contribute their thoughts, ideas, and dreams about art, street trends and pop culture as they see fit. In addition to the 18 individual “lipstick” blogs, the site also features interviews with and original content from emerging and established names in the art and design worlds.”

I checked out a few of the blogs already and was pleased. The women all seem great-edgy with their own minds. In fact, on Cindy’s blog, I thought I recognized her bedroom, and as it turns out, she is one of the designers of the fashion line Libertine. (Her apartment was featured in Domino last year-I swear I am not a stalker). Anyway, I can’t wait to check out all of the ladies’ blogs and hope you do to!

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Today, as part of the CineVegas Film Festival, my boyfriend and I watched the documentary titled Chelsea on the Rocks from filmmaker Abel Ferrara. We both loved it before we even saw it because it is based on the famous Hotel Chelsea in New York City. Also, the movie was shown at Cannes, so I figured it was worthy of watching. In my opinion, there could have been some improvements (such as labeling who the speakers were, cutting out some recreated scenes), but the information from the interviews in the film cannot be found elsewhere, so that makes it a winner in my eyes.

Some background on the Hotel Chelsea from its own website: “The hotel has always been a center of artistic and bohemian activity and it houses artwork created by many of the artists who have visited. The hotel was the first building to be listed by New York City as a cultural preservation site and historic building of note. The twelve-story red-brick building that now houses the Hotel Chelsea was built in 1883 as a private apartment cooperative that opened in 1884; it was the tallest building in New York until 1899. At the time Chelsea, and particularly the street on which the hotel was located, was the center of New York’s Theater District. However, within a few years the combination of economic worries and the relocation of the theaters bankrupted the Chelsea cooperative. In 1905, the building was purchased and opened as a hotel.

Owing to its long list of famous guests and residents, the hotel has an ornate history, both as a birth place of creative modern art and home of bad behavior.”

The documentary focused on telling stories of past and current residents, who are now facing eviction from new management and the hotel being turned into a boutique hotel (which is pretty much what has happened since the filming last fall). I had heard a lot about this debate of the hotel not being a haven for creative people anymore, and I enjoyed the movie because it gave me enough information to form my own opinion about what I think is best. Most surprising was how nice the hotel looked. The Victorian Gothic architecture creates a unique atmosphere, which I cannot wait to visit-which I am glad I have waited because now knowing so much of the pop culture history that has taken place there, I can appreciate it more.

Photos from hotelchelsea.com

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New Film Series

Summer is here! At least it feels like it.  Maybe it is because the season is over for most television shows, but I am so looking forward to HBO’s Documentary Film Series. Tonight, there is a film about Roman Polanski at 9pm. It gives me a reason to look forward to Monday evenings. To see all of the summer’s documentaries, visit hbo.com.

UPDATE:  Ha, the series doesn’t start until next Monday.  I did find some cool YouTube video interviews and stories on VanityFair.com, between a series of posts on WASPs, Angeline Jolie, Bill Clinton and the company he keeps, and differences of real UES girls vs. the lady characters on Gossip Girl, which are sure to delight.

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It seems like everyone I know (and that I like) loves the television show The Office.  I loved it even more when I found out that some of the writers are actually some of the stars.  Kelly Kapoor, played by writer/actress Mindy Kaling, is one of the only characters that even cares about fashion.  So, I thought it was so cute to find out that Mindy has a blog called Things I’ve Bought that I Love.  She hasn’t posted in over a month, but I loved reading through past posts-they are all so funny and I think a lot of girls can relate.  Check it out at www.thingsiboughtthatilove.com.

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As if the book Fashion Illustrations by Fashion Designers with its beautiful sketches by many of today’s top designers wasn’t cool enough, you can now bid on original sketches from the book to benefit Fashion Targets Breast Cancer. Visit this style.com link to view the sketches, buy the book from Amazon, or bid on the illustrations. I think these are a great investment (remember the article from an issue of Domino last year?) and the current bids are less than actual clothing! I love all the sketches, but these are the ones I am coveting.

Badgley Mischka via style.com

Phillip Lim via style.com

Christian Lacroix via style.com

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21 Movie Premiere

Last night, we were lucky enough to be invited to the premiere of the movie 21, which is based on the nonfiction book Bringing Down the House.  EXCITING!  I’d never been to a major studio premiere! Of course the hardest thing was picking out something to wear. I choose my Erin Fetherston dress that has layers of shades of purple, and I wore a necklace that was a vintage casino chip. I love dressing up!

Before the movie at the Planet Hollywood Casino, there was a small cocktail party with drinks, popcorn, and all kinds of candy bars and other treats that you find at the movies. The director introduced and brought on stage the cast, which includes Kevin Spacey, Jim Sturgess, and Kate Bosworth (who all looked lovely). I enjoyed the movie, but of course it was not as good as the book. The after-party had great entertainment, like blackjack tables, a cool dance floor, lots of food, and acrobats that “dance” by using too long strips of fabric that are hung from the ceiling. It was a lot of fun, but I was disappointed by how bad a lot of the female guests were dressed and the fact that they just hovered at the velvet ropes and watched the Hollywood stars. It was a party! They should take advantage of it and actually party!


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