Saturday, September 20, 2008


Inspired by my recent visit to the Woodstock concert site, I spent last night watching “Woodstock,” Michael Wadleigh's documentary about the festival. I remember watching it years ago, as a teenager, and loving the music -- and it remains a great movie and a terrific piece of documentary filmmaking. Thank God someone was there with cameras to record musical and cultural history being made. (But why wasn’t Melanie in the movie?)

My post yesterday shows why I could never be a theater critic. Apparently “A Tale of Two Cities” has been universally panned by the critical establishment and the fate of the show is in doubt. I actually enjoyed it! I guess I just don’t have a very critical eye. Unless something is a real stinker, I’m likely to be entertained.

(Photo: Chelsea, Aug. 2008)


  1. I'm the same way. When the critics' thumbs are going up, mine are going down and vice versa. I'm sure Broadway is glad there are some people out there like you, or the less lauded shows would probably close even sooner!

    You should write to Melanie and tell her what a long-time fan you are. Maybe she would send you an autographed copy of "Candles in the Rain." :)

  2. Taste is subjective. Art criticism is a very specific subset of taste.

    When my friend Michael Steinberg quit his job as music critic for the Boston Globe, it was because he really missed listening to music.

    Ah Woodstock. That was a different world!

  3. Good for you, Steve. You can bet a lot of people pan something simply do follow the trend. If you like, you like and that's it, really.

    (Now, how did I miss those fabulous kaleidoscope shots you did back in August? gorgeous.)


  4. I think the fact that you disagree with the critics simply means that you are a free and independent thinker, and that's always a good thing.

  5. But you had a good time . . . that's the main thing. What if you had gone, and realized you'd wasted two perfectly good hours of your life?

    Who sits in those chairs . . . have you seen them?

  6. If you go to see a play, or a movie, the only opinion that matters is yours!

    (Now, be honest, Steve, did it really suck?)

    PS What's that yellow object next to the chairs?

  7. I enjoy liking things that critics typically pan. I have no idea what the yellow thing is--you live in NYC, so it could be anything...The shadow in the photo is also interesting...

    Anyway, I was a little kid when Woodstock took place. My favorite song of Melanie's involved roller skate keys...She was cute, too!

  8. Barbara: I actually did meet Melanie a couple of times, and she signed a couple of albums for me. (Now I need her to sign my CDs!)

    Reya: I had a good friend who was a huge movie lover, and I always told him he should become a reviewer. But he was convinced that would ruin it for him, because he could never just enjoy a movie again.

    Thanks to the rest of you for bolstering my confidence as an independent critical voice! :)

    I've never seen who sits in these chairs, Tut, but they're outside a parking garage so I imagine the attendants use them.

    The yellow thing holds cigarette butts. You drop a smoldering butt in the top and it lands in sand in the base, and goes out because there's not much oxygen down there. (That's the idea, anyway.)

  9. i bet you have more fun than the critical establishment


  10. PS you are featured on my blog today.

  11. sometimes things are so bad they are actually good....