Freeline Media Review: “Dames At Sea”

The comedy musical "Dames at Sea" is now being performed at the Winter Park Playhouse.

The comedy musical “Dames at Sea” is now being performed at the Winter Park Playhouse.


WINTER PARK — In their musical comedy “Dames At Sea,” writers George Haimsohn and Robin Miller demonstrate absolutely no anxiety about being hopelessly silly — or about reveling in as many aging, decrepit clichés as possible.
Their show opens in a theater in New York City, and it all has a very familiar feel. There’s Mona, the egotistical, pampered star of the show, who has no qualms about being eyes-clawing ruthless to get her way. The director, Hennesey, is as harried as they come; all his money has been sunk into this production, Mona constantly pushes him around, and one of his chorus girls just ran off with her boyfriend. Read more »

Freeline Media Review: “Venus in Fur”

The character of Thomas (Mathieu Amalric, right) bears a striking resemblance to Trelkovsky (left), the character that director Roman Polanski played in his 1976 movie "The Tenant."

The character of Thomas (Mathieu Almarac, right) bears a striking resemblance to Trelkovsky (left), the character that director Roman Polanski played in his 1976 movie “The Tenant.”

“Venus in Fur” marks director Roman Polanski’s return to the world of fantasy and surrealism, a genre he championed in his earliest short films while a student at the Lodz Film School in Poland, like “The Lamp” and “Two Men in a Wardrobe” — even though Polanski’s adaptation of the hit Broadway play by David Ives initially seems like a straightforward black comedy about the battle of the sexes.
And while Polanski adapted the screenplay with Ives and remained loyal to the play, recreating it with few alterations, the movie seems to harken back to Polanski’s work in the 1960s and 1970s, when an often uncomfortable and slightly ominous sense of reality gives way to a trip down the rabbit hole, and the world as we know it goes berserk and the film follows the surrealistic logic of a dreamlike state. Read more »

Animal abuse sadly on the rise, Orange County shelter notes

People who love their pets are being urged not to leave them in locked cars.

People who love their pets are being urged not to leave them in locked cars.

ORLANDO — In the dog days of summer, it’s sadly turning out to be very tough days for all too many local pets.
The Orange County Animal Services is reporting that for the second time in recent weeks, an animal abuse case came to the attention of local law enforcement — by a call from a pizza delivery worker.
The first instance happened in Winter Haven, when a delivery driver brought a pizza to a home where there was a cockfighting ring going on, which he promptly reported to authorities.
Then on Sunday, June 28, a delivery driver reported to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office that he’d found an injured puppy on North Ohio Avenue in Orlando.
An Orange County Animal Services’ officer responded to the call, and found an injured three-month-old puppy, the shelter noted in a news release.
“Per the pet owner, the dog had sustained an injury from another dog in the neighborhood,” the shelter noted. “The owner surrendered the pet to Animal Services. An investigation is currently pending.” Read more »

Have you hugged your “Bloody Rabbit” today?

"Bloody Rabbit" follows one man's terrifying journey from hopelessness to a new start -- in a world spinning out of control.

“Bloody Rabbit” follows one man’s terrifying journey from hopelessness to a new start — in a world spinning out of control.


ORLANDO — What if you had a burning contempt, almost obsessive dislike, for one person in particular?
What if every day your feelings got stronger, and this person infuriated you more and more — by the minute?
You just wished that person would disappear off the face of the planet — for good.
And what if that person … was you?
Would you fall down a dark hole where the Bloody Rabbit is waiting for you?
How does any one person develop that much self-hatred? Well, what if you placed an overly strong aspect of your self-worth on your career, your home, your ability to demonstrate to others around you that you’re a success?
And what if it all gets wiped away in an economic downturn? What if you start to feel shamefully like the “other” — the person your friends, former co-workers, and neighbors will now shun because you assume they think you’re an embarrassing failure. Read more »

Freeline Media Review: “Macbeth”

The Young Company is now producing a striking version of "Macbeth" at the Lowndes Shakespeare Center.

The Young Company is now producing a striking version of “Macbeth” at the Lowndes Shakespeare Center.


ORLANDO — The production of “Macbeth” being performed at the Orlando Shakespeare Theater this weekend doesn’t have the look of Scotland in the 1500s, and in fact seems to better resemble the dark, ominous landscape seen in “The Terminator” movies.
The text by Shakespeare is the same, but this “Macbeth” jettisons the audience into a post-apocalyptic future, where teens scamper across the stage, looking like scavengers in search of food, appearing both desperate — and dangerous. There’s an undercurrent of violence about to explode in virtually every scene.
And with all due respect to Shakespeare purists, it works. This play about witches, ghosts, bloody murders and revenge only seems to get stronger as visualized through the bleak landscape that the characters — all of them under the age of 20 — inhabit.
“Macbeth” is being performed this week by The Young Company, the summer camp held at the Lowndes Shakespeare Center that allows teens from area high schools to audition for, and perform in, one of Shakespeare’s classic plays. Read more »

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