Playtime: Confiding Their Concerns To Faraway Friends

Dysfunctional relationships seem to be becoming more dysfunctional with each new play. Dysfunctional and disagreeable. Despairing and depressing. As presented in playwright Quiara Alegria Hudes' "Water by the Spoonful", however, each member of her random group is coping not with dysfunction, but with at least one relationship that is... Read more →


CULTURE WATCH: History, Crime, Politics Podcasts

Remember “The Graduate,” when Benjamin (Dustin Hoffman) is told that there is just one word he needs to know: “Plastics”? I honestly believe that now, other than AI, VR or IoT, the future is “Podcasts.” I have been both immersing myself and dipping my toes into, some good, some bad and some boring podcasts and have found a few... Read more →


Two Artists, Two Styles

  I spent last weekend with two very different artists. The first was Alberto Giacometti, played by Geoffrey Rush with a perpetual frown and a constantly lit cigarette, in the Sony Classics film "Final Portrait." The other was Marc Chagall in a whimsical song and dance fest titled "The Flying Lovers of Vitebsk", presented on the stage... Read more →


Culture Watch

WRITING WITH ONE HAND For the past 5 weeks, I’ve become housebound, thanks to a broken left arm that won’t allow me to put proper clothing on the top half of my body.  Poncho style tops cover me for my neighborhood walks and doctor visits, but going to art or theatre openings and being in crowds where the braced arm could be jostled... Read more →


Playtime: Splendid Threads in London

When a superb actor like Daniel Day-Lewis announces that his current film, “Phantom Thread”, will be his last, you can be sure that all those who admire him as one of the finest actors of his generation will flock to see it. And hope that his retirement will be similar to that of Barbra Streisand, in that he will return periodically, as... Read more →


FILM: Oscar Choices 2018

The 90th Academy Awards ceremony takes place on Sunday, March 4th. Leading up to that evening, I will give my analysis and my favorites among the nominees over the next three weeks. Actually, I believe it’s absurd to choose winners when art is involved. Art is not a race and carries a great amount of its impact in the eye of the beholder.... Read more →


Food Review: Little Ruby Café

I watched a program on TV last week that chronicled the life of a very successful restaurant owner in New York City. What I learned from him was that location is mildly important, food quality is important, but above all what makes a restaurant successful is making the customer feel good. That concept came to mind recently when I had a... Read more →


Playtime: You Will Want To Choose “The Chosen”

Chaim Potok was to the tenets and vicissitudes of Judaism as Eli Wiesel was to the Holocaust. Each man pursued his personal obsession with unflagging intensity, to a total of 57 books by Elie Wiesel and 32 by Potok (including 14 volumes on Jewish Ethics). But Potok was also a prolific playwright, presenting the diversity of Jewish thought... Read more →



In The Post, the character “Katharine Graham” states, “News is the rough draft of history.” This concept has been the mantra of those who have reported for and published newspapers for over a century and it is the heart of this very timely film. Writers Liz Hannah and Josh Singer have created an efficient screenplay, establishing a... Read more →


Fresh finds: Broccoli Rabe

Editor’s Note: Starting this Saturday, the Daily Press will feature a local vegetable, fruit, flower or food you can find at Santa Monica Farmers Markets. “Call it rapini,” Alex Weiser said as he handed me the loose bundle of dainty yellow flowers and leaves. “I like saying rapini.” Weiser is telling me the Italian word for... Read more →



Molly’s Game is the story of Molly Bloom, a promising Olympic class skier. After a devastating accidental fall during a qualifying meet, Molly gave up her athletic pursuits and went to work for a real estate mogul. One night he assigned her to manage his high stakes poker game. Molly thus found a new outlet for her tightly wound, highly... Read more →



Rated R 132 Minutes Released December 25 The saddest detail about the incident that inspired the movie All the Money in the World is that John Paul Getty III never really recovered from the emotional scars left by the events and by the microscopic public scrutiny into which he was born as the grandson of one of the richest men in the... Read more →


Culture Watch: Who Needs Libraries? We do!

This cartoon by Chris Obrion went viral on social media in 2015 when the Library Journal posted it to its Facebook page. Although originally created for The Roanoke Times, which re-ran it last year alongside an editorial by the president of the Roanoke Public Library Foundation, I actually saw it earlier this month, also on Facebook, shared... Read more →