As self happened to mention in previous blog post, she is going through Oscar withdrawal symptoms. For the first time in who-knows-how-many years, self will not be watching tonight’s awards ceremony because she is the guest at a dinner in her honor in Menlo Park.
Never mind that she’s not that enthusiastic about this year’s crop of Best Picture Nominees. She will still “lay it on the line” for her Oscar favorites, and check back on the winners as soon as she gets home.
Caveat: Self still hasn’t seen “The Artist.” At this point, watching it feels awfully redundant, since it cleaned up so many “Best Actor” awards already. She hasn’t seen “Extremely Loud, Incredibly Close” because it’s about 9/11, and she’d rather write her own 9/11 story instead of watching someone else’s. She hasn’t seen “The Help” because it reminds her of herself in the Philippines: Daughter of (Horrors!) Rich White Southern Family Stands Up for the Equality of Domestic Servants! She lives that script, she doesn’t need to watch a movie about it.
She hasn’t seen “Moneyball” because she hasn’t liked the last three or four movies with Brad Pitt. She hasn’t seen “The Tree of Life” for the same reason. She hasn’t seen “War Horse” because it is Spielberg in semi-nostalgic mode.
Of the Best Movie Nominees self has seen, she favors “The Descendants” (So Bacolod. Really)
And now to the ostensible reason for this post: Meryl Streep.
From the 23 January 2012 issue of The New Yorker, self learns that, not too long ago, La Streep “invited a dozen of Britain’s most influential female journalists to a dinner, to be cooked by” none other than herself. The journalists were all agog (According to the article, one of them tweeted: “Meryl Streep is five feet 6 inches. Does that mean flats for Islington kitchen table supper on Saturday night?”)
According to the article (written by Lauren Collins): “In the States, The Iron Lady is a movie, but in Britain it’s a litmus test.” In other words, Margaret Thatcher the politician is as polarizing in Britain as Sarah Palin is over here.
Thatcher was the woman who once said (quote via Mitt Romney, Jan. 6, New Hampshire): “Sooner or later, you run out of other people’s money.”
The movie, according to the article, portrays an “aged, doddering Thatcher” who spends all her time “watching home videos in her housecoat and drinking too much Scotch.”
The film was widely viewed in Britain (“took in more than three million dollars” — by way of contrast, “The Queen,” starring Helen Mirren, earned “about a third as much”)
More: “In Chesterfield, a group of former female coal workers, calling themselves the Real Iron Ladies picketed the multiplexes.”
Which brings to self’s mind where she and the husband were on Friday evening: self had gotten tickets to Israel’s Batsheva Dance Company (If self had known how controversial this group was, she might have thought twice, but no. Not aware of the slightest breath of scandal concerning the “Brand Israel” event, self plunked down her credit card. When we got to the theater, we saw a few picketers. “Watch this ballet if you support the government of Bibi Netanyahu,” intoned one woman, handing self a pamphlet. Inside the Novellus Theater, we encountered a collection of modishly clad young ladies — most in heavy boots, sheer black tights, short frilly skirts, and leather jackets — and some businesswomen types who were in charge of herding the audience unmolested to their seats. That was when self learned she had plunked down the big bucks for what was only to be an hour of performance. Even in New York, you get at least an hour and a half of dance performance for each show. Grrrr)
And now, self finds it impossible to return to the subject of Margaret Thatcher and La Streep’s fabulous dinner for the influential British journalists (Streep greeted the guests at the door, “barefoot and flanked by a dog.” In return, a journalist described the dinner prepared by Streep as “a student supper, but done in a much more swish way.”)
Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.