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Archive for the 'Latest Stories & Articles by H.L.' Category

“God Grew Tired of Us” Premier and Movie Review

Posted in Latest Stories & Articles by H.L., Main Blog (All Posts) on January 10th, 2007 7:32 pm by HL

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Monday evening I had the chance to go to the L.A. Premier of the new movie God Grew Tired of Us, at the Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood. I was invited to cover the red carpet entrance, as well as the movie and after party. I arrived a little late for the red carpet and when I walked in the first people I spotted being interviewed were Brad Pitt, and Angelina Jolie.
Brangelina at God Grew Tired of us Premier

See The Rest of The Story and More Pics


Interviews With Stars from New Movie “Fast Food Nation”

Posted in Latest Stories & Articles by H.L., Main Blog (All Posts) on November 10th, 2006 7:20 am by HL

The new movie “Fast Food Nation” opens soon. I got a chance to go over to The 4 Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills a couple of days ago for a gourmet lunch and to chat with some of the stars of the film, which recently premiered at The Cannes Film Festival.

The Movie is an adaptation of Eric Schlosser’s book expose Fast Food Nation.
In the book journalist Schlosser argues that the fast food industry is responsible for the explosion of malls in America’s landscape, expanding rich/poor gap, causing obesity and other rampant health conditions documented in electronic health records , and in the vanguard of U.S. American cultural imperialism abroad.
The film adaptation is a fictional story based on the book, in which Fast food executive Greg Kinnear finds there is something bad in the burgers, and he had to find out what and how it got there. He takes a trip to the massive slaughter houses of corporate giant “Mickeys” He also learns how they use cheap and illegal immigrant employees, working them to the bone for almost nothing to bring you your Burger and Fries. Here are some pics from the event.

Wilmer “Yo Momma” Valdarama and Catalina Sandino Moreno

Fast food nation Valdarama, and Moreno

Ashley Johnson
Ashley Johnson

Director Linklater, and Writer Schlosser
Fast Food Nation Director Richard Linklater, and Writer Eric Schlosser

Greg Kinnear Hanging with H.L.
H.L. and Greg Kinnear

Fast Food Nation opens next week Click Here for more info. and to attend a free screening.


Hollywood Walk of Fame Star to Dr. Jerry Buss

Posted in Latest Stories & Articles by H.L., Main Blog (All Posts) on October 30th, 2006 2:41 pm by HL

Jerry Buss gets a star on Hollywood Bd.

Jerry Buss, and Magic Johnson

Dr. Jerry Buss, the owner of The Los Angeles Lakers received a star on the Hollywood walk of fame this afternoon. Buss bought the Lakers in 1979, and has made them into the one of the premier franchises in all of sports. In 1985 Buss started the Prime Ticket Network, which was the first regional cable network to show all the games for a local sports franchise. It was in this area of television that he received his star on the Boulevard.
The honorary mayor of Hollywood Johnny Grant presided over the ceremony, speakers included L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Magic Johnson, & Paula Abdul, who was an early Laker girl, and their head choreographer. Also in the crowd was Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak (who went to the same High School as H.L. Long Island’s Brentwood High.) Former Lakers Jerry West, James Worthy, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Jamaal Wilkes and the current Laker team including Kobe Bryant, and coach Phil Jackson.
A huge crowd of rabid Laker fans was also on hand. They are getting revved up for the new Laker season which starts tomorrow night at The Staples Center downtown. The H.L. is a big Laker fan. I was there on June 19, 2000 along with Buss, Jackson, Kobe, and the late Chick Hearn, when the Lakers won their first of three consecutive championships, so there was no way I could miss this day (especially since the H.L. headquarters is right around the corner from the walk of fame) Congratulations to Dr. Jerry Buss. Go Lakers.

Lakers Coach Phil Jackson

Lakers Coach Phil Jackson

Barack Obama at Phil Angleides Get Out The Vote Rally

Posted in Latest Stories & Articles by H.L., Main Blog (All Posts), Videos on October 28th, 2006 11:40 am by HL

It was a perfect Southern California day for a Political Rally, The California Democratic Party put on a get out the vote rally at USC, which featured many prominent High ranking Democrats from throughout the state. The message of the day is that the Democrats are taking back California, and the nation this election day.
Lots of people want bush out

A large raucous crowd had gathered and were wildly cheering the speakers who included, John Garamendi, who worked in the Clinton administration, Fabian Nunez, and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. Steve Westley was there, he was Angledies opponent in the primaries, and had some nice things to say. Angleides and Westly might not have had to have this rally had they not slammed each other so hard in their primary commercials it allowed Arnold to take the lead by sitting back and doing nothing, but that was all forgotten today. The Mayor urged the people who attended the rally to get out there, talk to people, and knock on doors, to get everyone you know to get out there and vote on November 7,

Democratic political rally at uscUp next was the candidate himself Phil Angleides. He talked about running against Schwarzeneggar, and how Arnold is now pretending to not be a Republican anymore, and distancing himself from Bush like eveyone else is these days. Anglelides assured the crowd that Arnold is still a Republican and is just saying what he needs to say for now to try to win the election, including trying to woo his Hollywood Liberal friends with big dinner parties in Beverly Hills.

Democratic political rally at uscThe crowd had been getting more and more worked up as the afternoon went. There was some great old time political speechmaking going on, Angelides, and the Mayor were great at getting the crowd worked up. Then it was time for the main man of the afternoon, who had the crowd in a frenzy, as he took the stage. The Senator from Illinois Barack Obama. He spoke of the time he spent in Los Angeles at Occidental College, as well as while working as a civil rights attorney after graduating from Harvard. He acknowledged that it sometimes its easy to get discouraged with politics especially in light of what has been going on in the past 6 years, but that he has hope and is willing to fight for it. He encouraged the audience to do the same. Once again exhorting the faithful to get out there and make it happen. Make sure everyone you know is going to get out there and vote this election day. Talk to your friends and neighbors. That’s what I am doing right now. The people that read this site are my friends and neighbors even if we have never met. I don’t have to tell you who to vote for, you already know, Just get out there and make it happen.

Here is a Video Clip of The Man Himself, Barack Obama at USC

Photos by Net Zoo They’ve got more.


Movie Review: Death Of A President

Posted in Latest Stories & Articles by H.L., Main Blog (All Posts) on October 26th, 2006 8:36 pm by HL

I recently got a chance to see the controversial new film “Death of A President.” The movie generated some outrage from the right because it depicted the assassination of Bush.
The left argued that like “The Path to 9/11″ this was a fictional story, not only that, but it is a story you have to pay to go see in a theatre, not one that is being beamed into your home on a major television network during prime time.
The story is exactly as stated, a fictional account that takes place in 2007. Bush is out at an event and gets shot. The movie is pretty much what you would see on one of the networks if it really happened. They even use special effects to make it all look real.
Most of the main focus after the shooting is trying to figure out who did it. First they blame those evil anti-war protesters, and then the attention turns to Muslims.
As I was watching I was trying to figure out what the point of this movie was, and could not come up with anything. The audience in the theatre sat in stone silence perhaps trying to do the same. The only sound made was when it was announced that Cheney would be sworn in when he was located, but no one knew where he was, that drew a laugh as everyone could relate to the infamous bunker dweller. Within a few days Congress passes Patriot Act 3, which makes P.A. 2 tame by comparison,
The only explanation for a purpose to this film I finally came up with was to warn people not to do it. It’s as if they were saying: we know you may want to, but don’t because it will make things even worse. I cringed when Cheney, in a seemingly real computer generated scene, gave the eulogy at the funeral with all the swell things he was saying about the war mongering monkey. Then, in yet another interview clip of his insufferable Karen Hughes like speech writer, this time comparing him to God, I did something I have never done before. I got up and walked out no longer able to stomach all the Bush worship. Perhaps that was the point, if so it worked well but the heavy handedness didn’t do it for me.
So it may be unanimous, if you love Bush you will hate this movie, if you hate bush, you will hate this movie. I guess it is supposed to be some sort of commentary on the times we live in, as if we need another reminder.

“Red State” and The Chances of Winning Back The Senate

Posted in Latest Stories & Articles by H.L., Main Blog (All Posts) on October 18th, 2006 11:16 am by HL

by H.L.
I was watching Lou Dobbs on CNN last night; he was in Kansas covering the Senate race there, which apparently is very close. They played a clip of Jim Talent, the Republican incumbent giving a speech. The first thing he said was “I believe that marriage is between a man and a woman,” the people went into a frenzied applause. That’s the number one thing rural voters care about. War, no problem, no jobs except Wal-Mart, no problem, Bush looting the US Treasury, no problem, no health insurance, no problem….Gay Marriage, now we got a problem. Gay marriage will never happen in Kansas anyway, or any red state for that matter, so what is the problem that they have with gay marriage?

This brings me to a movie I saw recently called Red State, it was about a guy from Venice California, (Michael Shea,) which is the second most liberal town in Southern California you already know which one is first. he decides to go on a driving tour of 22 red states right after the 2004 Election, to see why the Bush voters did, and do, what they do.

Read The Rest of The Story Here


Movie Review: Man of The Year

Posted in Latest Stories & Articles by H.L., Main Blog (All Posts) on October 10th, 2006 4:24 pm by HL

Robin Williams is back in a new movie in which he plays a TV talk show host who becomes President of The United States in “Man of The Year.” Tom Dobbs (Williams)
Is a TV personality with an emphasis on Politics a la John Stewart, on The Daily Show.
When he gripes about the state of politics in the United States, he declares the he should run for President, which touches off a groundswell of support, and leads to Dobbs actually deciding to run. He declares he will spend no money on commercials, but his support keeps building through the show. Then, in a highly unlikely moment among many highly unlikely moments in the film, Dobbs is allowed into the debate. Of course this would never happen in the real world of 2 party politics, witness the fact that third party candidate Ralph Nader was not allowed to debate Gore, and Bush in 2000.
Dobbs lets it all hang out in the debate, which becomes Robin Williams doing his Robin Williams A.D.D. stick to the hilt. (and, I’m told, using a lot of the same jokes he used back in 2002) If you like Williams you’ll like the movie, especially this scene. Personally having never been a big RW fan, I didn’t find many of the jokes to be very funny.
The movie brings up the important topic of Electronic touch screen voting but gets it all wrong when it tries to get serious after Dobbs wins the election. (Seems it was a mistake, not voter fraud that made the wrong guy win this time) There was a problem with the voting and Eleanor Green (Laura Linney) Knows what it is. Of course her bosses at Diebold, um I mean the company she works for, don’t want anyone to know what that problem is, and tries to get her to keep quiet. The movie then turns into a bad episode of Three’s Company as she repeatedly tries to tell the president elect. Finally Dobbs finds out what is really going on. What will he do about it??? Well you’ll have to go see the movie to find out.
While it is nice that the film brings up what will be a huge issue this election day, and might help people who don’t follow politics to learn about the perils of electronic voting, as far as the comedy is concerned you might as well watch reruns of Mork an Mindy on TV Land.

Roundtable Discussion with Sgt.Zack Bazzi, and Deborah Scranton Director of “The War Tapes”

Posted in Latest Stories & Articles by H.L., Main Blog (All Posts) on October 4th, 2006 3:40 pm by HL

I have the first part of the Interview with Sgt. Zack Bazzi up, I will add the rest to it soon.

I went down to the Le Meridian Hotel in Beverly Hills today to meet Sgt. Zack Bazzi who was one of the main characters in “The War Tapes,” as well as the director of the film Deborah Scranton, There was a roundtable discussion of the film and the war with myself, and several journalists, Here is a transcript of the interview.

Q: What made you sign up for the service?

Bazzi: I joined at 18, which is probably the easiest enlistment for a recruiter. They give you a sales pitch, because infantry is the part of the army that they need the most recruits for. They try to gear you toward that. I just went up to the guy and said “Hey, I want to join the Infantry” (laughs)
I did it for several reasons; there are a lot of benefits to it. Education benefits but also for many implicit benefits like leadership, communications, and confidence. But I think the biggest reason is that I like it, it’s just my personality. It’s challenging, you do a lot of really cool things, that youth likes like you get to jump out of helicopters in whatever country… girls like you and….all that good stuff.

Q: The most difficult aspect of this for both of you was what?

Scranton: The most difficult aspect of this for me was hoping that they come home alive.

Read The Rest Of The Interview Here


Movie Review: The War Tapes

Posted in Latest Stories & Articles by H.L., Main Blog (All Posts) on September 30th, 2006 10:58 am by HL

Straight from the front lines of Iraq, comes a new documentary movie called “The War Tapes.” It is the true story of 3 soldiers from the New Hampshire National Guard, who were given cameras, and volunteered to go out and film what they saw and did while they were on a one year tour in Iraq. The soldiers from Charlie company 3rd Battalion of the 172nd Infantry Regiment, were sent to Camp Anaconda in the Sunni Triangle, are
Sgt. Stephen Pink, Sgt. Zack Bazzi, and Specialist Mike Moriarity.

The 3 men take their cameras with them wherever they go and shoot everything they see. Right near the beginning of the film they explain their main duty in Iraq which is to accompany KBR/Halliburton trucks which are carrying supplies, and food. While they are in their convoy the trucks are often attacked by insurgents with IED’s, (Improvised Exploding Devices) on almost every trip there is an explosion nearby, Caused by insurgent attacks, the soldiers then try to fight back. The main problem always seems to be that they do not know where the blast came from so they fire hundreds or thousands of rounds into the darkness in hopes of hitting the unseen attackers.

In a series of voiceovers of the men one of the real reasons for the war is explained.. I paraphrase: KBR (Kellogg, Brown, and Root)/Halliburton controls everything over here. They have their hand in every single thing that goes on, and they are making a huge profit on all of it. KBR/Halliburton is the company who’s former CEO is Dick Cheney, Cheney also still owns thousands of shares of stock in the company (433,333 to be exact) and is therefore a war profiteer.” They guard the trucks that carry food, soda, ammo, and fuel all of which Halliburton makes the army pay obscene amounts of money for.

Read The Whole Review Here


Bartcop Poker & Tequilafest In Vegas

Posted in Latest Stories & Articles by H.L., Main Blog (All Posts) on September 19th, 2006 4:36 pm by HL

Ok I finally have some time to write about my trip to Vegas last weekend for the fabulous Bartcop Poker & Tequilafest. Ol’ Bart sure knows how to throw a party and this was perhaps the best yet. It was at The Palms which is probably the most happening hotel in Vegas for the party crowd. Of course we had all heard about the $3000 a night suite that was booked for the occasion, but when I got inside and saw it I was truly impressed. The place was huge and plush.

The Scene of the party

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