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Articles by JetSetJen

Fine Arts: “It’s a Wonderful Life” Arrives at Madame Tussauds Hollywood

Madame Tussauds Wax Museum in Hollywood kicked off their 2010 holiday season on November 29 by unveiling a tableau of James Stewart as George Bailey in the film “It’s a Wonderful Life.” On hand to cut the ribbon at the attraction’s newest exhibit was actress Karolyn Grimes, who played Zuzu Bailey (George’s youngest daughter) in the film. Karolyn is the last surviving member of the cast and travels around the world to join celebrations of the classic Christmas movie. [...]

Wine: Domodimonti’s Dr. Francesco Bellini: A True Renaissance Man

Dr. Francesco Bellini, passionate winemaker of Domodimonti Natural Wine, married an Italian and relocated to French Canada, but he never forgot his Italian homeland. In 2003, while Francesco and his wife Marisa were visiting Italy, an opportunity came their way to purchase a despaired “antique cantina” with over 98 acres of vineyards along with almost 20 acres of olive groves. The idea of producing their own natural wine in the region where he grew up was the realization of a dream, and they promptly bought the property. But that's just the beginning of a remarkable story. You see, Dr. Bellini is not just a winemaker. He is also an organic chemist, and the driving force behind the realization of one the greatest discoveries of the 21st Century – a drug that seems to cure the dreaded Hepatitis C virus. [...]

CD: Joe Henry: Blood from Stars

As a songwriter, Joe Henry is a mighty fine producer. When “Blood from Stars” comes to its conclusion, you can barely remember individual songs because they all seem to run together. What lingers is the CD’s atmosphere – dank, jazzy, vaguely sinister. Not unlike Bob Dylan’s “Love and Theft” or Tom Waits’ recent run of CDs, the album could have been recorded on Fats Waller’s back-porch on a dark and stormy night. Marc Ribot’s guitar thunderbolts occasionally brighten up the inky darkness but Henry’s songs will put you in mind of Depression-era blues and minstrel shuffles. [...]

Parties: “The Twilight Saga: New Moon” Premiere Photo Gallery

It was a wild night in Westwood on Monday, November 16, as the premiere of "The Twilight Saga: New Moon" swept into the Mann Village Theatre. Screaming fans started lining up days before in the hopes of getting a glimpse - or even a kiss! – from one of the stars of this sequel to "Twilight." And they were not disappointed, as teen heartthrobs Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner, Kristen Stewart, and the rest of the "New Moon" stars all basked in the adulation, posing for pics, joking with the crowd, and even bestowing a smooch or two on their delighted fans. Our Christina Radish was there in the thick of it, and got some fantastic shots of the vampires, werewolves, and the humans who love them. The film opens everywhere Friday, November 20, 2009 (www.newmoonthemovie.com/). But you knew that already, didn't you? [...]

Movies: Bright Star

There is much to love about Jane Campion’s “Bright Star,” if only it weren’t so darn measured – poetic or not. [...]

CD: The Best Is Yet to Come: The Songs of Cy Coleman

Listening to “The Best Is Yet to Come,” a 13-track tribute to the late, great Broadway composer Cy Coleman, you’d never know he wrote some of the most infectious, buoyant music this side of “Oh, What A Beautiful Morning.” Overseen by producer/arranger/piano player Dave Palmer, the CD enlists a dozen left-of-center female artists, including Fiona Apple and Madeleine Peyroux, to interpret selections from the Coleman songbook. [...]

Movies: The 34th Toronto International Film Festival Wraps

“A Serious Man” made me giggle. Out loud. A lot. That’s why it’s my favorite film from the 34th annual Toronto Film Festival, which brought down the curtain on September 19, 2009. From the fabulous Coen Brothers (who, by the way, seemed as nebbishy as ever when Focus Features threw a party for their film at a swanky Prince Albert Avenue restaurant), “Man” features an extraordinary collection of Jewish players and familiar faces, mostly unknown except for TV character actor Richard Kind. Who? [...]

Movies: The Informant!

“The Informant!” is incorrigible. And Matt Damon certainly has a lot do with it, even if his character is based on a true story. [...]

Concerts: Sunset Strip Music Festival

It was a crazy day in L. A. on Saturday, September 12, as approximately 10,000 locals descended onto the Sunset Strip in West Hollywood for the inaugural Sunset Strip Music Festival. With two outdoor stages and six venues on the closed-off Strip between San Vicente Boulevard and Doheny Drive, the eclectic line-up seemingly had something for everyone, featuring performances from more than 50 different artists, that went on for seven music-packed hours. [...]
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