Andrea Goto recaps her Food and Wine experience.
Save the date for Savannah's signature boutique bridal event.Sunday, March 2, 2014
- 12:30 to 4:00 p.m. at The Telfair Academy, 121 Barnard St. (Event check-in at the Telfair Academy)
- 1 to 4:30 p.m. at the Jepson Center for the Arts, 207 W. York St.
- Bridal Fashion Show: 4:00 p.m. in the Jepson Center for the Arts. This top-label bridal fashion show will feature exquisite gowns from exclusive designers such as Oscar de La Renta, Monique Llhuillier and Vera Wang, just to name a few. The show will display the newest high-fashion bridal trends of the year, courtesy of BleuBelle Bridal.
- Tickets are $15 (plus additional ticketing fee) or $20 at the door the day of the event. To purchase tickets, CLICK HERE >>
From the EditorIf marriage is the consummation of love, we townies are the ultimate tourists. After all, what is a love affair that lasts a week compared to one that endures for a lifetime? To riff on the old chastity saw, our 12 million annual visitors may drink the milk—but we Savannahians bought the sacred cow. Sure, we’re attracted by the Hostess City’s public image—lush gardens, living history and colorful characters—but we treasure her candid expressions more. We love her unexpected awkwardness (37th Street, anyone?) and her sleepy morning face (a bewilderment of birds and walking hangovers). Because we’re in a relationship, we’re not content to admire Savannah. We want to know her. That’s why we don’t just tour; we explore. Our storied city has not one but more than 139,180 faces (U.S. Census 2011), and we at Savannah magazine enjoy the privilege of meeting many of them. In this issue, we took apart the icons that put our city on the map and sought out the individuals who give life here meaning. Behind the ubiquitous smiling face of Paula Deen, for example, we found chicken “golden-alizer” Michael McCollough and kitchen muse “Jelly Roll” Jones. In the shadow of Supreme Court Justice and Savannah son Clarence Thomas, we found his cousin, the “Mayor of Pin Point,” and his whole historic community of delightful, disarming neighbors. Beneath the glitzy, bawdy stage face of The Lady Chablis, we discovered a sensitive and nurturing friend. We hunted ghosts but found an even eerier entourage. We peeled away the sweet layers of the Vidalia onion and met the locals who live for its brief spring harvest. We had cocktails with a comedic concierge and took a Slow Ride with a seriously silly pirate. We discovered and debriefed 21 rising stars who hold the city’s future in their talented hands. We dug up Savannah founder Gen. James Oglethorpe’s experimental garden, alive and well miles away at the Historic Bamboo Farm. In short, we’re discovering Savannah, again and again. Whether you drink the milk or buy the cow, we invite you to explore with us. Warmly, Annabelle Carr, Editor
Slider Credits:>> Photography by Tim Willoughby >> Styling by Lynn Serulla
Lyn Gregory and Susanna Sonnenberg, author of She Matters, discuss the importance of female friendships.Susanna Sonnenberg has written two memoirs--the first about the fraught relationship with her mother. Her latest book tackles the nuances and complexities of women’s friendship with an honest, raw look at the ones she's enjoyed, survived and endured since childhood. The stories of these friendships paint portraits full of passion, inspiration, love and betrayal and are a testament to the importance of female friendships in shaping the lives of women. Susanna was born in London but grew up in New York and now lives in Montana with her husband and two sons. Savannah Magazine: This is your second memoir. What about this genre inspires your writing? Susanna Sonnenberg: In my first book, Her Last Death, about my pathological mother, I needed rigorous honesty as a counterpoint to all the lying I was raised with. The form demands honesty and authenticity. It’s what makes for good writing for me. SM: You focused on your relationships with women, not men, in this book. What made you decide to restrict yourself to female relationships? Susanna: When we tell the story of our lives, we discuss jobs, college boyfriends and other elements as the events in our lives, but our female friendships aren’t billed as prominent markers in telling our stories. I was interested in what was not getting said, the underlying bones of our lives, those dramatic relationships that don’t get talked about. SM: Some of the friendships you recount in your memoir are short lived and others extend over long periods of time. Are these “bursts” of friendship as important in shaping our lives as the long term ones? Susanna: I do. I write memoir listening to the nagging, little voices, memories that never leave you. If you are still thinking about that person years later, something happened. There’s a reason they come back to you. I was trying to look as the ways every experience makes us who we are; in the development of self, I wanted to use friendship as the lens. SM: Some of the most painful and honest sections of your book, recount fractured friendships such as Nina and Claire. These must have been hard to write about so openly. Susanna: It did help me understand these relationships at a deeper level and the process brought me a lot of compassion for the women involved and also for myself. There is a myth that all women’s friendships are happy and supportive but they are always more complex and challenging than that simple description. SM: Did you lose any friendships over the publication of your book? Susanna: Either I cleared it with a friend before I included specific information or I changed some details to obscure the identity of the relationship. SM: As a result of analyzing your friendships, can you share with us what are the most important characteristics of enduring relationships? Susanna: Forgiveness and the ability to repair damage done. We all mess up; we all disappoint. Most often it happens in ways that have nothing to do with the friendship but one’s own history. We have to be brave enough, strong enough to find ways through. And sometimes, in spite of great love, it just isn’t possible to make it work. SM: Have you ever been to the South before? What do you imagine Savannah to be like? Susann: I’ve spent time in Virginia and New Orleans but not Georgia, even though one of the important friendships in the book is with a woman from Georgia. I picture it as very proper and beautiful. It does take three planes to get there though!
John Krasinski's Peter is charming and witty, but his one-liners can’t save him from the devastatingly difficult realities of marriage, commitment and family life. Allison Brooks offers advice.Peter (John Krasinski) heads a seemingly nuclear Silver Lake family in this predictable boy-meets-girl, boy-likes-girl, things-don’t-work-out film—although there is a bit of a twist from the age-old story. When Martine (Olivia Thirlby), a 23-year-old film student working on her thesis, moves to California to finish the sound direction for her project, Peter agrees to help her as a favor to his wife, Julie (Rosemarie DeWitt). Slowly—and I mean slowly—director Russo-Young reveals that nobody’s perfect in this film: Peter can’t fight his attraction to Martine, Julie invites her ex-husband (Dylan McDermott) over for family dinner, and Martine can’t seem to ever say no to sex. The most refreshing part of the film comes unexpectedly: a side story focusing on Kolt (India Ennenga), Julie’s daughter from her first marriage. Kolt so effortlessly portrays how it feels to be a teenage girl in love with a man she can’t have. Poetically delusional, she tells her friends she and David (Rhys Wakefield), Peter’s assistant, have a complicated relationship due to their age difference. When she sees David making out with Martine in his car, we feel her heart break. While Russo-Young fails to grip her audience with a strong plot and general character formation, she does capture the complications of sexuality quite well. Apart from Peter and Martine, she explores Julie’s relationship with one of her patients (Justin Kirk) who describes his fantasies about her in detail, and Kolt’s much older Italian tutor (Emanuele Secci) suggests uncomfortable sexual undertones throughout the story. With no solid conclusion, the film doesn't earn the audience's devotion. Nobody Walks has less staying power than the characters intwined in the film's relationships. As I left Trustees Theater, I heard a group of 20-somethings discussing the film: “I understood the point but none of the characters were likable enough for me to care about them.”
Nobody WalksStarring: John Krasinski, Olivia Thirlby, Rosemarie DeWitt Director: Ry Russo-Young
Jonathan Able parties with the VIPs for night four of the Savannah Film Festival.Is it just me, or does the film festival keep getting bigger and bigger? For Wednesday’s 7 p.m. showing of Hyde Park on Hudson, all seats were filled in the spacious Trustees Theater. Audiences had flocked to the theater well in advance, some arriving as early as 4:30 p.m. to secure slots in both the pass-holder and ticketed lines. Thanks to the film’s modest run time of about 1.5 hours, the Hyde Park audience still had a small sliver of time to catch the evening’s second screening, Dracula, for a Halloween fright at the Lucas Theatre. Film industry luminaries and big-ticket donors made their way to City Market for their nightly reception—hosted this time by the upscale Southern eatery, Belford’s. The welcoming space, with warm wooden floors and ample dining rooms, was filled to capacity with moviegoers eager for a good time. Whether it was the excuse to frolic on Halloween or just a much-needed hump-day fix, the crowd had the size and energy of Opening Night. Belford’s attendees passed around trays of savory quiches, miniature roast-beef-and-gouda sandwiches and bacon-wrapped scallops, all of which were devoured by hungry guests within minutes of being served. VIP vixen Gabourey Sidibe (Precious) was dressed in a crimson pirate costume in honor of the haunted holiday, and Ty Pennington (Extreme Makeover: Home Edition) appeared as a ninja turtle (or was it a Geico gecko?) to join in the evening’s festivities.
Hyde Park on the HudsonStarring: Bill Murray and Laura Linney Director: Roger Michell
Dustin Hoffman makes his directorial debut with an octogenarian comedy, starring A-list actors he may have partied with back in the 1960s. Nicole Jantze is still humming a few tunes.
Photo courtesy of SCADAt the age of 75, award-winning actor Dustin Hoffman directs his first feature, Quartet, which stars Maggie Smith, Michael Gambon (yes, that’s Professor McGonnell and Dumbledore), Pauline Collins and Tom Courtenay. The film is slated for a December 28 release nationwide—just in time for Oscar contention. But, at its heart, it's a light comedy, perfectly suited for post-holiday binge viewing. The film opens as Beecham House residents are preparing as meticulously as the Royal Opera House for their annual gala concert to celebrate Verdi’s birthday. There is a bit more riding on this year’s concert with the threat of the Beecham House running out of funds. Cedric (Gambon) carries the burden as the director of the gala as Wilf (Connolly), Cissy (Collins) and Reggie (Courtenay) unravel over the arrival of the eventual fourth member of the quartet, star soloist Jean (Smith), whose affair with another musician on her wedding night split up their long friendship and ended her nine-hour marriage to Reggie. The plot is predictable, but Hoffman’s steady hand and the interactions of the characters, based upon a play by Ronald Harwood, strike a harmonious note. And then, there’s the music: Verdi (1813-1901) worked closely with his librettists (lyric writers) to marry plot and performance to verse and music. And that is what Hoffman has so smartly done with Quartet. In a retirement home where the residents are still very much living—quite fully and humorously, might I add—Verdi is the only old guy you will see.
Sal Paradise overcomes writer’s block with his cross-country road trips and sensual encounters in this visually appealing chain of thought. Allison Brooks tags along.
Photo courtesy of SCADMuch like Jack Kerouac’s acclaimed Beat Generation novel, director Walter Salles’ On The Road is a cast of characters rather than a story. When iconic Dean Moriarty (Garrett Hedlund) befriends the struggling young writer Sal Paradise (Sam Riley) in New York, circa 1947, Sal immediately feels a pull towards Dean’s rebellious, restless nature. The two seek cross-country adventure with Dean’s new bride, 16-year-old Marylou (Kristen Stewart). The three dabble in drugs, sex, jazz and theft at stops all along the winding road. Sal, Dean and Marylou encounter a handful of colorful, yet unrealized, characters on their road trips, each one shaping their journey, including scene-stealing Jane (Amy Adams), uptight Galatea (Elizabeth Moss), jazz musician Walter (Terrence Howard) and aging junkie Bull (Viggo Mortensen)—whose character deserves to be fleshed out more fully. When the camera focuses on Carlo (Tom Sturridge) and Camille (Kirsten Dunst), we are able to explore these characters’ inner struggles and begin to care for them, at least a little, even in the absence of any overarching narrative structure. Despite the stream-of-consciousness flow of the story, the film itself is a visual pleasure, if at times gratuitous. Salles captures the beauty of America in the late 1940s, taking us from New York City to Denver to New Orleans to Mexico City and back again. As the credits rolled and Trustees Theater emptied, I overheard some not so flattering comments. One gentleman, who is clearly in the film business, declared that the film would have been great if it were only 40 minutes long and had the impact of the last scene carried throughout, which finally delivered some emotional payoff. Another guest mimicked his brains being blown out. The talented cast did their best with the material they were given, but Salles ultimately fails to capture the zeitgeist that Kerouac did in his novel, relying instead on montages of sex and drugs and meanderings to give heft to his characters' awakenings. The real star of On the Road is a midcentury American landscape that no longer exists.