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Icons under attack

Letter writers defend Steve Allen, Valerian

Mike Wofford and friends play jazz at the Scripps Research Institute
Mike Wofford and friends play jazz at the Scripps Research Institute

Who Wrote “Gravy Waltz”?

In Just Announced it was nice you mentioned Mike Wofford’s upcoming “Some of My Best Friends” concert. However Mr. Sanford’s statement that Mr. Wofford composed “Gravy Waltz” is contradictory to any credit I’ve ever seen. I’d always heard that was composed by Steve Allen, however this credit states it was cowritten by Allen and Ray Brown. You might check with Mike to clarify this.

  • Name withheld
  • University City

Jay Allen Sanford responds:

I never made such a statement. The letter writer misread the text — he seems to think we were talking about event host Mike Wofford, but we were talking about Ray Brown, the tribute subject.

Movie

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets *

thumbnail

Utterly unreal space story from Luc Besson (he of <em>The Fifth Element</em> fame), who seems to have watched James Cameron’s <em>Avatar</em> and decided he could make it sillier, more scattered, and less emotionally engaging. (Score one for Cameron’s brand of painfully earnest sentiment?) So once again, we are treated to a lithe race of CGI natives, living in harmony with nature and one another, whose planet is ravaged by cavalier, warmongering humanity. And once again, it’s up to a plucky, lovestruck white dude (Dane DeHaan) to save them. This time around, his sweetie is also his partner (Cara Delevingne), but the sparks between them are as artificial as the banter, the physics, the drama…you name it. The film wants to be madcap, screwball, swashbuckling, and moving. It winds up chaotic, dizzy, plodding, and hammy. But if you’re the sort who insists on looking for bright spots amid the endless blackness of space, there is, admittedly, a measure of day-glo visual razzle-dazzle, a smattering of not-terrible comic relief, and a riot of invention for its own sake.

Find showtimes

Didn’t Like “White Dude”

In your movie listings the information given to the movie Valerian by Matthew Lickona is very disrespectful. In the review Mr. Lickona described the actor as a “a plucky, lovestruck white dude.” I didn’t like it and I don’t think he will write the same description for the actor of movies like The Dark Tower or Kidnap or the musical Hamlet.

  • Pablo Aldaz
  • via email
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Mike Wofford and friends play jazz at the Scripps Research Institute
Mike Wofford and friends play jazz at the Scripps Research Institute

Who Wrote “Gravy Waltz”?

In Just Announced it was nice you mentioned Mike Wofford’s upcoming “Some of My Best Friends” concert. However Mr. Sanford’s statement that Mr. Wofford composed “Gravy Waltz” is contradictory to any credit I’ve ever seen. I’d always heard that was composed by Steve Allen, however this credit states it was cowritten by Allen and Ray Brown. You might check with Mike to clarify this.

  • Name withheld
  • University City

Jay Allen Sanford responds:

I never made such a statement. The letter writer misread the text — he seems to think we were talking about event host Mike Wofford, but we were talking about Ray Brown, the tribute subject.

Movie

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets *

thumbnail

Utterly unreal space story from Luc Besson (he of <em>The Fifth Element</em> fame), who seems to have watched James Cameron’s <em>Avatar</em> and decided he could make it sillier, more scattered, and less emotionally engaging. (Score one for Cameron’s brand of painfully earnest sentiment?) So once again, we are treated to a lithe race of CGI natives, living in harmony with nature and one another, whose planet is ravaged by cavalier, warmongering humanity. And once again, it’s up to a plucky, lovestruck white dude (Dane DeHaan) to save them. This time around, his sweetie is also his partner (Cara Delevingne), but the sparks between them are as artificial as the banter, the physics, the drama…you name it. The film wants to be madcap, screwball, swashbuckling, and moving. It winds up chaotic, dizzy, plodding, and hammy. But if you’re the sort who insists on looking for bright spots amid the endless blackness of space, there is, admittedly, a measure of day-glo visual razzle-dazzle, a smattering of not-terrible comic relief, and a riot of invention for its own sake.

Find showtimes

Didn’t Like “White Dude”

In your movie listings the information given to the movie Valerian by Matthew Lickona is very disrespectful. In the review Mr. Lickona described the actor as a “a plucky, lovestruck white dude.” I didn’t like it and I don’t think he will write the same description for the actor of movies like The Dark Tower or Kidnap or the musical Hamlet.

  • Pablo Aldaz
  • via email
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