In honor of the movies and trick-or-treating, here’s a pairing of scary movies with their freaky candy counterparts. How about a NutRageous! candy bar while watching PSYCHO? Or a 3 Musketeers with TRILOGY OF TERROR? And you can guess what little tri-colored treat goes best with CHILDREN OF THE CORN.
At HOME PROJECTIONIST, we’re always on the lookout for recommendations for movie/food/drink themed events.
WineClubGuide’s list of “The Top 6 Appearances by Wine in a Movie” offers programming ideas for your next home viewing party where WINE is the main attraction. (But wait, isn’t wine the main attraction at all home viewing parties????)
6.French Kiss (1995) – Meg Ryan and Kevin Kline star in a sweet romantic comedy.
5. Silence of the Lambs (1991) – OK, so it’s not about wine, but it does boast a brilliant mention of wine.
4. Sideways (2004) – Rocking the wine world and flatlining Merlot.
3.Bottle Shock(2008)– Wine history docu-drama…complete with gorgeous light and scenery.
2. Mondovino (2004) – “Struggle and survival” in the wine business documentary.
I’m all for viewing parties that have perfect pairings of food and film — like fish tacos being served at a screening of JAWS.
And I will be forever grateful that I went to a home screening of the documentary, OFF THE MENU: THE LAST DAYS OF CHASEN’S(1997). I probably would never have savored Chasen’s chili. How good is it? Liz Taylor had batches shipped to her every two weeks when she was in Rome filming CLEOPATRA. I don’t blame her.
Chasen’s was one of the Old Hollywood legendary eateries, and it managed to stay alive until 1995 when it was demolished to make room for a new retail site.
This delicious documentary, by independent filmmakers Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini, is an homage to the stories of its glamorous clientele — from Hitchcock to Sinatra, Gable to Gleason — and even contemporary stars like Donna Summer who wrote “She Works Hard for the Money” in honor of a female bathroom attendant at the restaurant.
But the real emphasis of the work is on the stories and recollections of Chasen’s dedicated captains, waiters, and staff who loved doing their jobs as much as they loved rubbing elbows with celebrities. Like an extended family with all of its ups and downs, love and dysfunction, arguments and clashes, they stuck together and had a helluva a good time.
The New York Times called OFF THE MENU, a “poignant farewell” to another era, gone but not at all forgotten. Some critics assailed the film for not delving into the labor and social inequities of the time. That’s another story for another documentary.
This film is a charming celebration of character and characters. I can only dream of sitting in one of those banquettes watching Humphrey Bogart and Peter Lorre get drunk.
He’s still keeps ’em coming: Woody Allen’s new film To Rome With Love kicked off the Los Angeles Film Festival (www.lafilmfest.com) on June 14. Last year, Midnight in Paris (2011) was absolutely delightful (and who knew that I could ever fall madly for Owen Wilson?).
But for me, MANHATTAN(1979)still shines. It’s beautiful look at, has a smart script and memorable performances, and it’s a classic that deserves a revisit. I am always surprised how much I love it every time I see it, and it’s a stellar film for a Home Projectionist event.
Shot in black and white to stunningly show off the grit of the city (and the shades of gray of the dilemmas that characters face), the film is rich with Allen Angst and hapless hilarity (although you may laugh out loud only a few times). Allen — along with Diane Keaton, Michael Murphy, Mariel Hemingway, and Meryl Streep — ruminate, wallow, digress, change partners, fall in love, and fret, fret, fret, good lord how they fret about their daily little lives. And for all their self-absorption, you love them nonetheless.
The film’s locale provides a long list of options for themed entertaining. Manhattans for cocktails and an array of potential menu items from deli trays to Waldorf salad, bagels to dirty water hot dogs, and hot pretzels to New York cheesecake. (The downside is that there are so many options and it’s hard to choose.)
As a special bonus, a recent viewing of the film spawned a spur-of-the-moment, made-up game called “What You Saw In the Movie That You Don’t You See So Much Anymore.” The list included a typewriter, smoking in restaurants, luggage without rollers, a dictaphone machine, big telephones, racket ball, women with really bad perms and tiny boobs and no bras. Oh yes, and when was the last time you heard someone talking about Kierkegaard?
Gloria Bowman is a writer, storyteller, blogger, movie lover, freelance editor,
and author of the novel, Human Slices.
Access her blog at www.gloriabowman.com; on Twitter @GloriaBow