Tag Archives: Steve Martin

Time for a knap

I spent most of last week on ‘planes, trains and automobiles.’ Unlike Steve Martin and John Candy in the iconic film of the same name, I suffered only minor delays in my journeys, but was constantly annoyed by one group of travelers —

Backpackers

backpack in airport

Backpackers clog the aisles of both airplanes and trains and, for reasons unbeknownst to me, appear to have no idea of the additional girth their over-the-shoulder luggage adds to their body. They careen down the center aisle, bumping people on either side (and behind when they need to back up).

Apparently the backpack cushions their body from all collisions too, because they never seem to notice or feel the need to apologize.

So, if any backpackers are reading this, take note the next time you travel. You leave behind a wake of bruised body parts and bad attitudes…

And they all have your name on ’em.

The new phone book’s here!

During a class meeting today, I had reason to utter the words —

“I’m somebody!”

…which brought to mind the iconic scene from The Jerk starring Steve Martin.

When I mentioned the movie to my class, they stared at me unknowingly.  One student, trying to be helpful, said, “I’ve heard of Steve Martin.

That’s awesome.

So, for their education — and everyone’s viewing pleasure — I include the aforementioned clip here.

I hope you are inspired to watch The Jerk…

And learn your special purpose.

Those aren’t pillows!

Planes-Trains-and-AutomobilesA taxi.

An airplane.

Another taxi.

The subway.

A train.

Yet another taxi.

That’s how I traveled from Boston this morning…made a brief stop home in New York City mid-day…and arrived in Philadelphia early this evening.

I can’t help but think —

Steve Martin and John Candy would be proud.

Sensitive much?

Comedy is the art of making people laugh without making them puke.” -Steve Martin

I saw We are the Millers this week and did not puke once.

we are the millersI did laugh a lot — often very loudly.

In fact, I am confounded why a majority of movie critics were so harsh toward the comedy.

Perhaps I have seen too many R-rated comedies, but I think the “offensive content” in Millers pales in comparison to The Hangover trilogy or, say, This is the End.

The movie actually supported family values, for cripes sake…albeit in a subversive, round-the-bend way.

Kathryn HahnPlus, watching Kathryn Hahn — who plays the wife of an RV family the Millers encounter on their journeys — scream bloody murder for a full minute is worth the cost of the ticket.

So ignore the critics like you usually do and laugh a lot.  If you find it offensive…

Well, consider that a bonus.

Speech, speech

It’s awards season.  And guess who won??

ME!

That’s right.  The Sticky Egg has won its second Versatile Blogger Award, courtesy of fellow blogger — and no doubt awesome human being — Hyperactive Inefficiency.

Thanks so much!

When I received my first nod last year from The Word Nymph, I didn’t pay it forward as is every winner’s prerogative.

Not this year.

Therefore, I hereby bestow The Versatile Blogger Award on the following blogs that I have recently discovered and find interesting and fresh:

  1. http://justachitowngirl.com/
  2. http://purecomplex.com/
  3. http://blackcrowwhiteowl.com/
  4. http://larasbookclub.wordpress.com/
  5. http://ratedyoung.com/

Congratulations!

And, in keeping with another awards rule, here are a few things about me that you might not know:

  1. I once had a dog named Booger.  And my best friend in college?  Had a dog named Booger.
  2. I was a member of the original Steve Martin Fan Club — arrow-through-the-head, certificate, you name it.
  3. I keep three calendars.
  4. I love buying purses but hate carrying them.
  5. I have a habit of living in cities for seven years, then moving.  (What’s that about?)

I’m also supposed to write a blog post about at least one of these facts in the near future, so stay tuned.

And thanks, as always, for reading The Egg!

Birds part deux

Four hundred years ago — okay, more like 12 — I attended a writing conference at Craigsville Beach on Cape Cod.

One of our assignments was to come up with a new scenario for a movie using only the items found in our hotel room as inspiration.

Now, my hotel was rather rustic (translation: cheap).  The wallpaper had tiny geese flying in vee’s across a yellow, late evening sky.  It was ugly, but I used it.

My idea:   What if two birdwatchers — one a noted expert, the other a novice — accidentally kill a rare bird that they are admiring?  Horrified, they try to cover up the accident in a variety of ways, all of which go terribly awry.

Hilarity ensues.

I pictured Dudley Moore as the lead. (It was 12 years ago.)  I thought it was a pretty funny idea, but maybe too niche-y for Hollywood.

I mean, who would do a movie about birdwatching?

Fast-forward to 2011.  Steve Martin, Jack Black and Owen Wilson are starring in the new movie The Big Year.  Take a look at the trailer:

What you can’t really tell from this clip is that these three men are avid birdwatchers…competing at a prestigious birdwatching event!

See?  Someone actually made a film about birdwatching, and even they think it’s too niche-y to use in the marketing.

I was so ahead of my time.

Why not take…

I think we can all agree — Steve Martin movies usually rock.

Consider this sample:

The Jerk
The Man With Two Brains
Three Amigos

Little Shop of Horrors
Roxanne
Planes, Trains & Automobiles
Dirty Rotten Scoundrels
Parenthood
LA Story
Father of the Bride
Grand Canyon
Housesitter
The Spanish Prisoner
Bowfinger
Shopgirl
It’s Complicated

I’ve seen most of them multiple times.

But one of my favorites has been nearly impossible to find, on basic cable or premium channels, until this week.

All of Me was released in theaters when I was still in college (translation: a long, long time ago).  It tells the story of Edwina Cutwater, portrayed by Lily Tomlin, a millionaire who has been sickly her entire life.

As she faces an untimely death, Edwina enlists the help of a Tibetan master to transfer her soul into the body of a healthy, younger woman.  Martin plays Edwina’s lawyer, who accidentally gets in the way and suddenly finds her soul in his body, each of them in control of one side.

It is physical comedy at its hilarious best, with Martin and Tomlin playing off of one another perfectly.

This week Ovation Channel brings All of Me back to cable.  It airs tonight at 9:00pm ET (and probably lots more times to come).  Just wanted to get the word out.  I’m recording it, of course, so I will have a copy for keeps.

Time to wear out this Martin classic, too.

Solomon’s curse

You’ve heard the phrase “he had a face made for radio”?

Perhaps Deborah Solomon, who writes a weekly interview column for the “New York Times Magazine”, has a personality made for print.

Solomon interviewed Steve Martin at the 92nd Street Y in New York City on Monday night during a stop on the promotional tour for his new novel An Object of Beauty.

Afterward, the 92nd Street Y sent an email apology to all attendees along with a $50 ticket refund.  The email said, “We planned for a more comprehensive discussion and we, too, were disappointed with the evening.”

Steve’s new work of fiction takes place in the art world, and Solomon spent the bulk of the interview talking to him about just that.  Art.  And specific artists.

Steve is an avid art collector, and Solomon writes art criticism, so the two of them were having a bang up good time.  The problem?  The 900 people in attendance were not.

Solomon said the Y didn’t tell her what they wanted from the interview.  But any good facilitator is going to know her audience and gear her questions to their interests and motivations.

Solomon’s mistake?  She simply had the conversation with Steve that interested her.

Solomon’s reaction to the Y’s email?  “I think the Y, which is supposedly a champion of the arts, has behaved very crassly and is reinforcing the most philistine aspects of a culture that values celebrity and award shows over art.”

Maybe.   Or maybe they are respecting their audience, who buys memberships to their yearly lecture series, and will be there long after Solomon is gone.

Point of interest — when I saw Steve Martin on the 92nd Street Y calendar, I was at first anxious to attend.  But when I noted that Deborah Solomon was conducting the interview, I decided to skip it.

I saw the two appear together at the Times Center a couple of years ago.  Her interview there angered the audience in a very similar fashion.

Lesson learned.

The one that got away

Moviefone.com has re-imagined some classic Hollywood movies with the stars who were originally tapped to play the lead roles pictured on the movie posters.  As they point out, most films don’t start and end with the same actors attached.

It’s funny how jarring it looks to see Will Smith as Neo in “The Matrix.”  Or Johnny Depp skipping school in “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.”  And can you get your head around Meg Ryan and Al Pacino in “Pretty Woman?”

Not even.

I posed a similar question to Steve Martin when I attended the 2nd Annual US Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen many moons ago.   He was in town to accept a Star Award from the American Film Institute and took questions after the ceremony.

My hand was the first one raised.

I asked Steve, “Were you ever asked to do a film that you passed on, and then later — after the movie was produced — had regrets?”

His response?  “I’m never offered good film roles.”  (That got a laugh.)  Then he got serious and said that he was more likely to develop his own projects.

If that is true, I guess there are no “might have been” movie posters for Steve Martin.

Except for maybe “Striptease.”

So simple

I’m trying to remember the first time I saw or read anything about the movie “It’s Complicated.”

I know I was much younger.

Living in Manhattan, I saw the call for extras for the filming that took place in the city.  Back then it was called the “Untitled Nancy Meyers Project,” but with Meryl Streep, Alec Baldwin, and Steve Martin attached to the movie, we were already convinced it was going to be amazing.

And we were right.

Because even though the final title is “It’s Complicated,” it really couldn’t be more simple.

Take a woman nearing 60 with everything — and I mean everything: unbelievable home, successful career, supportive friends, three beautiful Stepford children (and I mean that with love) — except a man in her life, and then suddenly give her two attractive men fighting over her.

What’s complicated about that?

I mean, sure, juggling the two men is complicating.  But when you have Meryl, Alec and Steve doing the balancing act, it is high comedy in its simplest form.  I loved it as much as I expected to, if not a bit more.

One tiny surprise?  John Krasinski.  Sure, we all love him as Jim in “The Office,” but who expected him to shine — and steal almost every scene he is in — amongst this stellar cast?

Simple, simple, simple.  And hilarious.