Tag Archives: Charlie Chaplin

Hollywood CA: Coast Playhouse Has Seen Better Times

The rundown theater serves today as a symbol of our video and smartphone era, where people no longer go out to attend live performances. They prefer to stay home and squint into TV screens and little smartie phones.

The now-lonesome building on Santa Monica Boulevard dates back to 1925, and has just 99 seats. Charlie Chaplin lived a few blocks away, and produced several programs in the theater. Called the Players’ Ring Theatre in the 1940s, it featured live performances by future stars including James Arness, Marlo Thomas and Jack Nicholson.

Now the once-busy facade is a lonesome rest stop to a homeless wanderer.

Didja Know: Hair Is A Critical Factor In History

Today’s most bombastic headlines feature two world leaders threatening each other with hair-raising destruction. One wears an orange toupee with flowing locks on top and down the back collar. The other has the sides of his head shaved, making him look like a tubby jailbird.

Those two are just the latest to make hairy history. There have been many others. Strong guy Sampson, an early hirsute, could win any battle until Delilah gave him a haircut. Rapunzel was locked in that tall tower until she let down her hair for the climbing prince.

Lady Godiva rode through Coventry naked, covered only by her long hair. One sneaky look by Peeping Tom caused him to go blind. During World War 2, Germany’s Hitler sported his Charlie Chaplin moustache and loose lock of hair, while Russia’s Stalin glowered with his hairy handlebar.

Today, we see rap stars featuring all kinds of kinky hair in many colors, shapes and flows. Meanwhile, grossly overpaid pro football jocks squat during the National Anthem while their enormous hair-dos rise in patriotic respect for their bank accounts.

Trump Vs Putin: Who’s The World’s Top Guy?

The two most puffed-up national leaders met, and from the publicity, each appears to be doing his best to be the biggest boss. News video and photos show them trying to top each other with grinning handshakes and back pats.

Anyone still remember the famous scene in Charlie Chaplin’s 1940 movie, The Great Dictator? The two most famous bad asses then were Germany’s Adolf Hitler and Italy’s Benito Mussolini. In the Chaplin movie, the names were thinly disguised as Adnoid Hynkel and Benzino Napaloni. One scene was in a barber shop, and each dictator used the chairs to attempt to look more important by cranking up higher than the other.

The occasion of the historic Trump-Putin meeting was the high-pumped G20 Summit. We can only hope the leaders will solve the problems between the world’s two super powers. The event was not in a barbershop, but in Hamburg. Hmm, Hamburg. Do you think they should have opened the session with: Where’s the beef?

5 Great Movies To Watch When Snowed In

What can you do when the family is stuck at home or in the airport because of a big, heavy snowfall? Watch a movie about being snowbound, of course. In addition to being entertaining, it could make the time pass more quickly. All of the films are available on DVD, some online and free on your smartphone.

The Gold Rush (1925): A classic starring Charlie Chaplin, set in 1890s Alaska. The Little Tramp is a prospector who shares his snowed-in cabin with Mack Swain. They run out of food, resulting in the famous scene where Charlie cooks and eats his shoe, daintily using the tacks as toothpicks.

Battleground (1949): A realistic story of American GIs caught in heavy snow and surrounded during the 1944-45 Battle of the Bulge in Belgium. Van Johnson heads the soldiers who must survive the bitter weather and German attacks.

The inspiring story tells of how they endure the horrors of war, and win out in the end, when the dreary winter mists clear away to sunlight. With it comes the promise of help from the air and fresh American ground forces.

Alive (1993): Based on the true story of Uruguayan rugby team members on a flight that crashed in the snow-covered Andes Mountains in 1972. After 70 days of endurance, watching companions die and cannibalism, the surivors are finally rescued.

This story is not for small children nor those easily dismayed by the survivors’ need to take such drastic actions. However, for the dramatic snow scenes and eventual satisfying ending, this film can be a rewarding experience while gathered around a warm fire on an icy night.

Fargo (1996): Most of the action takes place in snowy Fargo, North Dakota. The town police chief Marge Gunderson (Frances McDormand) goes about her duties in a calm, low-key manner, whether it involves financial thievery or murder. The fact that she’s pregnant doesn’t deter her from official duties.

Driving through snowstorms, she eventually tracks down crooked car salesman Jerry Lundegaard (William H. Macy) and his two hired hit men. Their job was to kidnap the salesman’s wife in a phony ransom set-up. It all went wrong when a bad guy kills the other and feeds him to a wood-chopping machine. Despite the intricate plot, the police chief solves it all in her quiet, unassuming manner, and brings the criminals to justice.

The Day After Tomorrow (2004): You couldn’t find a snowier film, because the futuristic story depicts much of America turning into a totally frozen-over wasteland. The plot explains it to be a natural follow-up to global warming, when the weather patterns reacted violently as they did during prehistoric Ice Ages.

Environmental scientist brothers Sam Hall (Jake Gyllenhaal) and Jack Hall (Dennis Quaid) try to warn Washington of the coming massive snowstorm. However, their predictions are at first rejected by politicians closely resembling George W. Bush and Dick Cheney.