Jim Youngson

Jim Youngson

Friday, 10 February 2017

The Jeff Bridges Lovefest

“Thanks for coming, guys!” a warm opening line from Jeff Bridges, friendly and sincere. Unrehearsed. Unpretentious. Without self-consciousness and totally relaxing.

That’s why the sold out crowd of admirers and locals love fellow Santa Barbaran Jeff Bridges, who received the American Riviera Award Thursday night, an award given to “actors who have forged their own path – taking artistic risks and making a significant and unique contribution to film.” Well stated and a perfect choice.

Of course, that’s just my opinion, man.

To shouts of “Robert! Robert! Robert!” from fans lining the ropes, Mr. Redford himself stepped out of a black Cadillac and into the rare public gaze Friday night.

SBIFF has honored legendary people before, but this was a big deal. For decades Robert Redford rarely has been seen in the limelight, clearly preferring the Paul Newman school of fame and celebrity: stay out of Hollywood, avoid most award shows, let’s keep it on the human side of things.

Monday, 16 December 2013

Bonamassa Slams Santa Barbara

This show was flippin’ loud. Like a white light Freight Train crushing full force into a mighty Zeppelin, we’re talking LOUD!!!

With ears still ringing the next morning, this reviewer can say with confidence that in 30 years of attending shows here more sound has never come from the Arlington’s stage.

My friend Mike Day was raised in Hawaii and lives now in Santa Barbara. He's a kindred spirit of Jack Johnson. Their hearts reside in both places. Their temperaments are easygoing, friendly and genuine.

And that's why people like both of them.

Spending time with Daniel Day-Lewis Saturday evening illuminated his personal brand of artistry while simultaneously underscoring its mystery, even to him.

A two-time Academy Award winning actor some call reclusive, the 55-year old Day-Lewis is notorious for taking on few roles. But when he does, as director Michael Mann (Last of the Mohicans) said in his introduction, “His work is so extraordinary he inhabits a character’s body and soul, in dimensions of authenticity like we’ve never experienced.”

Friday, 25 January 2013

28th SBIFF Opening Night 2013

Thursday night's threatening rain didn't hamper logistics or dampen the spirits of Opening Night festivities for the 28th Santa Barbara International Film Festival.

The SBIFF searchlight was flashing furiously in all directions from State Street and could be seen for miles due to the low cloud ceiling. And just before show time, the moon actually made a cameo, if but for a few minutes.

Indeed, it was a good start to the 10-day fest.

“William Shatner at the Arlington? What for? Doing what?” asked a good friend over a drink before the show. Indeed, fair questions. Intentionally, this reviewer did no advance research on what the famous actor had in mind, or how the show is being received (on tour now). Presumably the only criteria for the audience was that you must like …William Shatner.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Gordon Lightfoot

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