foto faves

foto faves

Saturday, April 20, 2019

just made me angry

So here is my brief review of our Thursday night at the theater-

it just made me angry

I hate it when women are portrayed as victims and this play pushed all my buttons -

The main character a young woman with a child finds a crappy apartment by lying to the landlady about not having any children and not having a husband/boyfriend. She works at a dive taco place called Casa di Taco House (yes jokes are made) and aspires to becoming the assistant manager after having worked there for a number of years. 

She is in desperate financial straits which are never quite explained - sure she works in a low wage menial job but she keeps leaving the stage to go to work so it would appear she was working a good number of hours. And she seemed to respond to the requests for shift changes etc (thereby necessitating child care for her four year old.)  So if she is reliable and amenable - in today's economy (and there is no reference to any other time frame) logic would have it that she would be AT LEAST an assistant manager.  So why is she so strapped for cash that she let's her erstwhile boyfriend who keeps dropping in to help out with the kid pay her rent and beat her up?

She lost her last apartment due to an eviction when the boyfriend ended up beating her up and destroying the apartment....

As played this woman is smart - funny - reasonably well spoken - reliable and works for a living with no reason whatsoever to put up with being someone's punching bag.  Her landlady tries to make this perfectly clear to her but she doesn't listen and ends up being evicted from yet another place - owing back rent and having had the boyfriend beat her up and injure an older man who lives downstairs. 

The landlady - despite her own tenuous circumstances that keep her a slumlord - aspires to more and wants to help the main character to do so as well.  In the end though she has to protect herself from the slide into the life the main character is leading and that she came from. 

NO winners in this play and while the climb is uphill for everyone there seems no reason (within the confines of what we are given of the characters backgrounds) that the main character should not be able to escape the abusive boyfriend.... and hence my anger. 

only one oblique reference to any social services  belies the reality of the resources available to domestic violence victims - and that pissed me off too.....

so no - I do not recommend the play - and no I did not find it credible....

on with the show- up next a show with a timely topic - Admissions at Theater WIT tomorrow- Hollywood and rich people scandal in the headlines just as this play was premiering at
WIT and even better it was written by one of my favorite playwrights - the author of Significant Other which I LOVED!




I loved Significant Other so much I am going to post my earlier review -  found here -

http://blog.semifreelife.com/2017/11/significant-other.html

Friday, November 3, 2017

significant other

So my last night in Chicago in 2017... I went off to the theater as Phil went off to a concert with his WFMT buds at the Old Town School...

We had seen Bad Jews at Theater WIT a while back and found it uproariously funny in a seriously awful black comedy way - so when I saw the new production at WIT was by the same playwright I jumped at going to see it on my final and their first night -


Here is the summary from the theater's website-
Significant Other - By Joshua Harmon - Directed by Keira Fromm -Theater Wit
Jordan Berman is single gay man in New York City. Mr. Right is nowhere on his horizons. As he's nearing his 30's, his close group of girlfriends begin getting married en masse. What happens when you feel like life is leaving you behind but you're still expected to be at the forefront cheering on your friends on their perfect wedding day? Significant Other is a bittersweet comedy about friendship, single-hood, and hoping you're not the one choking on car exhaust as the "Just Married" sign disappears from view.

Here is my report- I laughed and I cried sometimes at the same time! The leading man deserves an award for his incredibly touching performance as the guy who love (so far) has passed by... there was such sweetness and yet incredible sadness.... being in the age of late twenties and early thirties is the hardest time of many people's lives and mostly because you can't see what the future holds - as his grandma said- "it's a long book and the next chapter hasn't started yet..."

really a wonderful play - hope it is a HUGE hit for them because this one deserves a large audience!









Thursday, April 18, 2019

film fest recap

So yes I did see 26 movies in eight days - actually many more counting the shorts - and here are some of the things I saw with a blurb about them - 


 Cute remake of old theme of spoiled rich girl learns the value of hard work-

cute short about a receptionist at a psychologist office who falls for one of the patients-



an interesting short about the six degrees of separation as applied to our own winter headquarters-

 a film that had a good story for a short - full of twist and turns but more interesting to us as it was filmed in a place we eat at least once a month Captain Brian's Seafood-


 lovely short on the subject of PTSD not preachy or heavy handed-


 the insert to my badge-


two films I saw with Mary Ann & Gene -


 my favorite documentaries- well worth seeing-
another good documentary -


a crappy but well acted film that reduced its rating from a three to a one (out of five) in the last stupid two minutes of the film - REALLY?

 my very favorite film of the whole festival - not for everyone but a visually stunning film where virtually every frame was a masterpiece of cinematography-


my favorite short of the whole festival - a poem that brought me to tears- 
all the shorts in the animated competition - winner and my favorite happened to coincide - in Two Balloons 


I have many more of course but I think you get the gist of it- many things to see....

oh but here is a warning - by far the absolute WORST movie I saw -


back in the saddle

So as you know I have been on hiatus since last October - when I hit the eighth anniversary of blogging and more then 150,000 hits on my blog... I wondered what I would miss and not miss about the ongoing recordation of all things travel and food and theater etc...

here is what I missed-

being able to immediately access the info I am putting into these posts - while many things made it to Facebook they are not as easily accessed

being able to put up as many photos as I wanted for my subject matter as well as additional things such as wikipedia information etc...

what I did not miss - the sense that I needed to get things posted while fresh... so things may not be quite as immediate as they have been in the past as I lean into posting again after six months away...

at any rate- I am back posting and I can think of no more deserving topic for my first post after my return to Chicago and the posting than our dinner last night at JEONG the newly opened destination dining experience from Dave Park and Jennifer Tran!

I will post photos and follow with commentary -
my two favorites -  beef from the a la carte and then salmon from the tasting menu-




the stunning and serene interior is a perfect place for food of such elegance - the deceptively simple listing of ingredients for each dish completely belies the complexity of flavors and textures in each creation.



shown in order as listed above-










in addition to the tasting menu we ordered some extras - things we wanted to taste and simply could not wait until a return trip -








a stellar performance by the entire crew- we couldn't be more thrilled for Dave & Jennifer whose Hanbun was a spectacular success despite its exurban location- the food there was equally as beautiful and tasty so we knew we were in store for a treat!

Here is a trip down memory lane - Hanbun-









so happy for these two - we wish them incredible success with the new venture!!!!!