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The fate of Wilshire Blvd. icons may be next for community preservation planning.


Hear about Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks at Pickford’s onetime home.


Real estate / enteRtainment Home & Garden

Museum events honor the late Martin Luther King Jr.

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Section 2


jANuARy 2018

hancock park • windsor square • fremont place • Greater wilshire • miracle mile • park la brea • larchmont

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Hancock Park | $3,449,000 Gated, Chic Colonial in Windsor Square! Gleaming hrdwd flrs, trad center hall flr plan.

Hancock Park | $2,200,000 Impressive 4 beds + 4.5 baths + huge entertainment room + guest house.

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Lisa Hutchins 323.460.7626

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Hancock Park | $1,800,000 Brookside two-story home over 4,000’ with 5 bds/4 bas. First time on market since 1974.

Miracle Mile | $1,799,000 3+2+Family room. Step down LR w/ fplc, central hallway. Guest area. Close to the Grove.

Miracle Mile | $1,750,000 3+2 Fixer on apx 8200 sf lot in prime location. Near the Grove & place of worship. Sold.

Hancock Park | $529,000 Top floor 1bed, 1.5ba corner unit w/ large master & bath. Powder rm, LR/DR open concept.

Sandy Boeck 323.860.4240

Cecille Cohen 213.810.9949

Cecille Cohen 213.810.9949

Maria C. Gomez Gri Crs Cips 323.460.7614





Hancock Park | $12,000 / MO Classically contemporary furnished 3BR/2 full + 2half-bath, media room & gourmet kitchen.

Hancock Park | $10,400 / MO Larchmont Village 5+3 modern SFR w/den, fab master bedrm, gourmet kit. Pool & spa. Leased.

Hancock Park | $5,900 / MO Delightful Eng. 3+2.5, hrdwd flrs, central heat/air, lots of orig. details, newly painted.

Hancock Park | Coming Soon Upper duplex for sale. 3bds+2bas. Lots of character. Close to the Grove & place of worship

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COLDWELLBANKERHOMES.COM Hancock Park North 323.464.9272 | 251 N Larchmont Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90004 | Hancock Park South 323.462.0867 | 1199 N Larchmont Boulevard, Los Angeles 90004 Real estate agents affiliated with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage are independent contractor agents and are not employees of the Company. The property information herein is derived from various sources that may include, but not be limited to, county records and the Multiple Listing Service, and it may include approximations. Although the information is believed to be accurate, it is not warranted and you should not rely upon it without personal verification. ©2017 Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage. All Rights Reserved. Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Owned by a subsidiary of NRT LLC. Coldwell Banker and the Coldwell Banker Logo are registered service marks owned by Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. CalBRE# 00616212



(Continued from Sec.1, p. 1) Hough. “So many of these theaters are being torn down, and maybe these photographs will help people appreciate them.” “I want these theaters to become popular again,” adds Mulhall. “I’m hoping to help stabilize them and turn them into a part of today’s society. I want the ‘Millennials’ to think they are a cool place to go.” Both members of the Los Angeles Historic Theatre Foundation, Bay Area Historic Theatres and Theatre Historical Society of America, Hough and Mulhall realized that most theaters have never had their

Larchmont Chronicle

JaNuary 2018


HISTORIC Wilshire Ebell is photographed by Mark Mulhall.

palace-like interiors thoroughly documented by professional photographers. Out of their love for these notable grande dames, the two decided to volunteer their services through their organization called Ornate The-

atres. Once the theaters have been photographed, Hough and Mulhall hand all of the photographs over to the theater owners to use as they wish. “By getting these pictures out there, hopefully more people will get involved and raise the social consciousness of their existence,” explains Mulhall. Up to this point, the Los Angeles residents have photographed dozens of historic theaters around the country, including the Paramount Theatre in Oakland, the State Theatre in Cleveland, Ohio and the Erie Playhouse in Erie, PA. Locally, they have documented the United Artists Theatre

Wishing all of my friends, neighbors, clients and colleagues the Happiest New Year ever!!

Office: 310-623-8722


Lic. # 00981766

EBELL THEATRE opened in 1927.

at the Ace Hotel, the Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Blvd., the Alex Theatre in Glendale, the Spreckels Theatre in San Diego and many more. They would like to start travelling internationally as well. On the day that I caught up with them, they were focusing their lenses on the historic Wilshire Ebell Theatre on Lucerne and 8th St. “The Ebell Theatre is celebrating its 90th birthday this year,” declares Virginia Murray, assistant theater manager. “The theater opened its doors in 1927 with a door-opening operetta event.” The Ebell ladies also used the theater back then for membership meetings, she noted. “They had about 3,000 members at the time, so they would have to hold two meetings per day in order to fit everyone into the space.” The theater, with a seating capacity of 1,266, has a rich history. “The Ebell Theater is one of the last known places Amelia Earhart spoke before she disappeared,” says Tina Tangalakis, Ebell director of marketing. “Judy Garland was discovered here, performing with her sister, and Michelle Obama has spoken here. More recently, Beyoncé held a holiday ‘Lemonade’ screening at the theater in 2016.” Hough, who has been snapping pictures for decades and counts real estate photography as his day job, loves being

Photo by John Hough

able to use digital cameras to capture the architectural aspects of the theater spaces. “I absolutely love digital,” Hough raves. “With film photography, it was so limiting. With digital, you can shoot multi-exposures and play in Photoshop and really capture the space.” Mulhall, a website developer, marketer and photographer, shoots the environmental photographs, taking at least 100 pictures per room and putting them together in a 360-degree “ball.” “It’s like you can stand in the middle of the room and look around you at the entire space,” he explains. In order to continue on their photographic crusade, the pair has turned their organization, Ornate Theatres, into a nonprofit. They are hoping that through corporate and individual donations, they will be able to travel to as many of the world’s historic theaters as possible, before time runs out. “These are such jewel boxes,” says Mulhall. “But they are disappearing. We shot the Michigan Theatre in Detroit, but it’s a parking lot now.” “If you do something for money, you’ll get bored real quick,” Hough says. “But if you do it for love, you’ll be happy at the end of every day.” To learn more about Hough and Mulhall’s project, or to donate, go to ornatetheaters. com.

New Academy Museum, wellness topic at Ebell lunch programs


Hollywood Hills Magical Mediterranean by noted architect Elmer Gray. 4 bedrooms, 4.5 baths, guest suite, 2 fireplaces, a chic garden patio with outdoor fireplace, and a chapel! With views to make the birds jealous. Please call me for more information and to schedule an appointment to see this trophy property. JILL GALLOWAY Estates Director, Sunset Strip 323.842.1980 Not listed in the MLS. This is not intended as a solicitation if your property is currently listed with another broker. CalBRE 01357870

The future of the new museum of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences — as well as physical and spiritual health and wellbeing — are the focus of upcoming luncheon talks at The Ebell of Los Angeles, 741 S. Lucerne Blvd. Kerry Brougher, director of the Academy Museum, will talk about the Academy museum’s entertainment and educational venues, as well as architect Renzo Piano’s vision, on Mon., Jan. 8 at 11:30 a.m. Sharon Lawrence, actress (“Shameless,” “Me, Myself

and I”) and Ebell member, is chairman of the program. Paul Kaye, who leads workshops at the Peace Awareness Labyrinth and Gardens on West Adams Blvd. and who is co-author of “Living the Spiritual Principles of Health and Well Being,” will discuss how to focus energies on health and wellness. That luncheon is Mon., Jan. 22 at 11:30 a.m. Tickets are $30 for members; $35 for nonmembers. For more information, call 323-931-1277 or email

Larchmont Chronicle

January 2018



Resolve to create robust preservation planning in 2018 New Year’s resolutions are often aspirational, designed to create better versions of ourselves.  Nevertheless, they can be motivational as well, a desire to resolve issues that we haven’t been able to bring to closure in the past.  So, in the spirit of creating a better city in 2018, now be it resolved to: Plan better Work to include robust preservation planning in all new community plans, starting with the Hollywood Community Plan in 2018. The stakes are high; plans define the future work of city staff for decades. Right now, the findings of SurveyLA have yet to be incorporated firmly into the planning process.  The 2018 conversations regarding the Hollywood Community Plan will define the city’s approach to the revitalization of historic Hollywood Blvd. and its immediate environs, as well as historic neighborhoods and adjacent commercial corridors. Access to mass transit is a major driver of these plans, as anyone who has followed development on the Red, Purple and Exposition lines knows. The fate of historic Wilshire Blvd. icons may be next. The discussion needs to include looking at all identified Historic Preservation Overlay Zones (HPOZs)

McAvoy on Preservation by

Christy McAvoy to find a way to help advocates and city staff work together to streamline the process of adoption before it is too late. The number of qualified contributors is finite. If too many are lost to demolition or inappropriate alteration, an entire district is lost. Other zoning mechanisms may help these neighborhoods as well, but only HPOZ guidelines and procedures concentrate on preservation of an entire district to retain not just character but the historic fabric of these historic enclaves. Access to neighborhoodserving retail and appropriate scale of adjacent multi-family housing are current topics of concern in several  HPOZs, including Sunset Square and Spaulding Square. Create housing Get creative about using historic buildings for housing, probably the number-one priority in the city today for all income levels. Can we put second units on some properties

without disrupting neighborhoods? Use industrial buildings to create shared housing? Protect existing historic apartments from being torn down? Support preservation Support the organizations whose mission it is to preserve and protect: the Los Angeles Conservancy, Windsor SquareHancock Park Historical Society, Hollywood Heritage, and The Ebell Club of Los Angeles, among others. Wilshire Blvd. and other area churches, the stewards of the historic Farmers Market, businesses or institutions located in historic buildings all need support as well. Did you know that Paramount Studios and the USC campus have identified historic districts as parts of their approved master plans? Share the news Get the stories of the built environment out there. Places were built for people. The contexts of SurveyLA have laid the groundwork for the stories of the contributions of women, ethnic groups, industries, and institutions to be told. Even designated buildings can have their stories amplified to reflect events of note that may have been researched since the original designation. Women’s organizations like the Friday Morning Club, sorority houses,

POSTCARD from the early 1940s, approximate, shows the “Los Altos Fashionable Apartment Hotel” at 4121 Wilshire Blvd.

The Ebell, and the YWCA (Studio Club) are increasing their profiles by acknowledging their roots and their educational and philanthropic activities. Tell us your story On a personal note, does your family know your story? How did you come to be in Los Angeles? When? What are your personal landmarks, and what role did they play in your childhood education, experience of the city and personal growth? I’m always looking for places to profile and stories to tell. Send me your suggestions in the new year at Christy Johnson McAvoy, a former president both of the Los Angeles Conservancy and the California Preserva-

tion Foundation, as well as an Advisor to the National Trust for Historic Preservation, founded Historic Resources Group in Hollywood.

Los Angeles poet at Memorial library

Los Angeles poet Lynne Thompson, who received an artist fellowship from the City of Los Angeles in 2015, will be giving a reading at the Memorial Branch library, 4625 W. Olympic Blvd., Wed., Jan. 17 at 6 p.m. Thompson is the author of “Start with a Small Guitar” (What Books Press, 2013) and “Beg No Pardon” (Perugia Press, 2007). For more information, call 323-938-2732.

Get a sneak peek at Pasadena Showcase House

This year’s Pasadena Showcase House of Design — a 12,000-square foot Mediterranean estate built in 1915 — is offering special packages for its spring tour. The Platinum, “anytimeskip-the-line,” ticket at $75 is being offered through Jan. 31. The Privilege Peek ticket includes skip-the-line entry to the Showcase House, plus admission to an Empty House Party (before the redecorating) on Jan. 19. The cost is $250.

Larchmont Chronicle

JaNuary 2018


Preservationists eye CBS’ Television City’s future

The Grand Gala ticket, at $500, features both the Empty House Party and a Premiere Night Gala (on April 20). Both ticket offerings expire Dec. 31. The 2018 Pasadena Showcase House of Design will be open to the public April 22 — May 20, 2018. Regular-priced tickets go on sale Feb. 1. Proceeds benefit multiple, local music-oriented programs. For more information, O’CONNOR or to purchase tickets, visit CARROLL played the infamous Archie . Bunker in “All in the Family.”

Enjoy ‘Love, Scandal and Tea’ at Fremont Place with WSHPHS Celebrate Valentine’s Day in the Beaux Arts ballroom of Hollywood silent movie star Mary Pickford’s one-time home, 56 Fremont Pl., Sun., Feb. 11 from 2 to 5 p.m. Hollywood historian Marc Wanamaker will share spicy stories about Mary PickTo freshen upford, yoursuch surroundings as her marriage to Douglas Fairbanks, the buildwe now carry ing of Pickfair and founding of United Artists, with attendees at “Love, Scandal and … Tea.” He will also talk about other Old Hollywood stars, their scandals and lifestyles amidst the exploding movie industry of the 1910s and 1920s. The tea is hosted by the Windsor Square-Hancock Park Historical Society. Seating is limited. Tickets are $75 for members, $85 for nonmembers. For more information, visit

Can the CBS lot be saved? The Los Angeles Conservancy recently submitted a nomination to designate the storied CBS Television City complex as a city Historic-Cultural Monument (HCM). The move follows news that CBS Corporation may be interested in marketing the 25-acre property at Beverly and Fairfax. A possible sale has raised widespread concern over the fate of the site, identified as National Register-eligible in Los Angeles’ SurveyLA. Landmark designation will offer protection to the property by requiring preservation design review and approval through the city’s Office of

Historic Resources, according to the Conservancy website. Opened in 1952, the complex is the first large-scale facility designed for television production in the U.S. Architecture firm Pereira & Luckman designed the buildings, which contain soundstages, studios, editing rooms, offices, rehearsal halls, shops, and storage. Interior flexibility was key: studio walls, and even some exterior walls, could be moved and rearranged to accommodate the needs of specific productions. Shows that were produced here include “The Carol Burnett Show” and  “All in the Family.”


“The hardware STore” formerly “Larchmont Hardware”

Here are some cool items we have in our HouseWares section. 1- “Capabunga” no spill wine sealer caps. They replace the cork. Easy to use, with no spills. We have a nice selection of the caps. 2- “Electra Rabbit” the electric corkscrew 3- Pizza Scissors- easy and fun 4- The “Smood” potato masher. Mashes in seconds, scrapes the pot clean, and even serves. 5- “Dream Farm” mini spoons- It is a “spoon measure.” Tea spoon and table spoon measures are built into the spoon, making it a measure and a scraper in one. Plus, it is made to “sit off the table” so it doesn’t touch the surface. 6- “Govino” plastic wine glasses to “go anywhere with wine.” 7- Also, we are the only place within miles to have the large (120 liter) refill cartridge for the “Soda Stream”

310-652-0123 • 8914 Santa Monica Boulevard between San Vicente and Robertson in West Hollywood Weekdays: 8am–7pm, Sat 8am–5:30pm, Sun 10am–5pm ©LC0114



Larchmont Chronicle

January 2018




Larchmont Chronicle

JaNuary 2018


In Full View: Fascism and Nazism in Los Angeles, 1933-1945 The map, spread across two pages, shocked me. It appears at the beginning of USC history professor Steven J. Ross’s latest book, “Hitler in Los Angeles: How Jews Foiled Nazi Plots Against Hollywood and America” (Bloomsbury, 2017). The map, based on 1948 cartography by the Automobile Club of Southern California, illuminates downtown Los Angeles and a few miles to its west, as well as Hollywood. The map’s legend tells the story: a swastika (10 sites), Star of David (five Jewish resistance sites), an omega (Aryan resistance, three sites), an F (fascist, 12 sites) and an O (two meeting hall sites). An inch equals a half-mile. Using this scale, my ruler tells a story: The Wilshire Boulevard Temple (still on Wilshire), was, in the 1930s and 1940s, located almost equidistant between two anti-Semitic and fascist


organization sites, the Silver Shirt Meeting Hall, and the America First Headquarters.

Home Ground by

Paula Panich

The map was a signal that I would read every page of this complicated story. [Author Ross spoke about the book at Chevalier’s Oct. 30.] Non-Jew spies Los Angeles attorney Leon Lewis (office: 626 W. Seventh St.) is the hero of this history. A Jewish man and an interpreter of the unfolding events of his time, Lewis organized a spy ring of non-Jews who risked their lives to infiltrate Nazi and fascist organizations in Los Angeles from 1933,







when Hitler was elected chancellor in Germany, to the end of World War II. Lewis and his committee kept meticulous notes later used by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Congressional committees to bring suit against American Nazis and others. But Lewis and others who tried early on to bring evidence of plots against Los Angeles Jews to local and federal law enforcement were stymied at every turn. Fascist and Nazi sympathizers were rampant in the sheriff’s department, the police departments, the district attorney’s office and the FBI. The sympathizers were not necessarily (though some were) partial to Hitler and Germany, but were anti-Semites who believed communists and Jews were equivalent and were the major threats of the time. Plots uncovered Lewis and his spies uncov-


ered plots in various organizations: one to kidnap the leading Jews in Hollywood in order to hang them in a forest (Louis B. Mayer was usually at the top of any enemy list); another to form fake pest control companies MOVIE MOGUL Louis B. Mayer, here with to insert poison Joan Crawford, topped many enemy lists. gas into Jewish Lives in danger homes; yet another to drive Leon Lewis knew his life and through Boyle Heights, spraythe lives of his family members ing the streets with gunshots, were in danger. He persevered, killing as many Jews as posvigilant until the war ended and sible. beyond, fighting also for the civil I could read only a few pages rights of blacks, Mexicans, and at a time of “Hitler in Los Anthe Japanese. He later moved his geles.” family from 845 Keniston Ave. to My husband’s Jewish family Pacific Palisades. He died at 65 of arrived in Los Angeles in the a heart attack on May 21, 1954. late 1930s. What were they Ross writes of Lewis: “Despite thinking? I will never know. besting local Nazis and fascists, he could not stem the spread of anti-Semitism in Los Angeles.” Halfway through reading this book I read a profile (Nov. 26, 2017) in the “New York Times” of a self-professed young Nazi in Ohio entitled “In America’s Heartland, the Voice of Hate Next Door.” The reporter summarizes what his subject had said: “The election of President Trump helped open a space for people like him, demonstrating that it is not the end of the world to be attacked as the bigot he surely is . . .” As the 29-year-old commented on being a Nazi: “You can just say, ‘Yeah, so?’ and move on.” It’s the big shrug. What may lie beneath our own time also haunts.

















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Larchmont Chronicle

January 2018




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COLDWELLBANKERHOMES.COM Hancock Park North 323.464.9272 | 251 N Larchmont Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90004 | Hancock Park South 323.462.0867 | 1199 N Larchmont Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90004

Real estate agents affiliated with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage are independent contractor agents and are not employees of the Company. ©2018 Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage. All Rights Reserved. Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Owned by a subsidiary of NRT LLC. Coldwell Banker and the Coldwell Banker Logo are registered service marks owned by Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. 235770GLA_12/17 CalRE#00616212


King remembered at museums “Dreaming our Way to a Better World,” a remembrance of Martin Luther King, Jr., will feature an arts program at the Zimmer Children’s Museum, 6505 Wilshire Blvd., on Sun., Jan. 14 from 2 to 4 p.m. Visitors of all ages are welcome to Los Angeles Museum

Larchmont Chronicle

JaNuary 2018


of Art at 5905 Wilshire Blvd., for a Target Free Holiday on Mon., Jan. 15. Bilingual tours, art workshops and live music will be featured. Pick up free 30-minute timed tickets at the Boone Children’s Gallery.

Enter free Jan. 28

SoCal Museums Free-ForAll Day is Sun., Jan. 28. Participants include Craft and Folk Art Museum, La Brea Tar Pits and Museum, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust and Zimmer Children’s Musuem. Visit

New lowriders on exhibit, alternative fuel cars on tour

New additions are on display through Mon., Jan. 14 in “The High Art of Riding Low: Ranflas, Corazón e Inspiración.” The exhibit at the Petersen Automotive Museum ends July 15. Chief historian at the Petersen, Leslie Kend- 1958 CHEVROLET Impala, above. all, will give a beforehours tour of the AlterRSVPs required with a rooftop native Fuels Gallery on Sat., reception of coffee and bagels Jan. 13 at 8:30 a.m. at 9 a.m. Learn about the history of The museum will host a alt-powered vehicles and how “Carroll Shelby Birthday we got to the Toyota Mirais Cruise-In” Sun., Jan. 28 to 11 and Teslas you see today. Tours a.m. The Petersen is at 6060 are at 8:30 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. Wilshire Blvd.,

Calligraphy, Kanji workshop Jan. 13 “Exploring Kanji & Calligraphy,” is Sat., Jan. 13 at 10 a.m. at the Japan Foundation, 5700 Wilshire Blvd. The workshop is free. Register online. Japanema: films screen the

second and fourth Wednesday of every month at 7 p.m. For more information on these and other events call 323-761-7510 or visit jflalc. org.

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Larchmont Chronicle

January 2018



Discover the Park La Brea Lifestyle

LE PETIT MARCHÉ will open its doors at Melrose and El Centro.

By Billy Taylor At long last, the restaurant and gourmet market under construction at the north end of Larchmont Blvd. is ready to open its doors to the public. Le Petit Marché, located in the first floor commercial space of the LC Apartments at the corner of El Centro and Melrose, will open this month, according to publicist Heather Boylston. The exact date is not yet confirmed. The space will feature a restaurant and full bar with seating inside and outside for more than 100 people. Also included is a gourmet market filled with pre-made sand-

wiches and specialty items. “We are thrilled to be able to provide the Larchmont community with a place they can do it all — shop for a meal to cook at home, have a breakfast meeting, grab a coffee, meet friends for lunch and linger to happy hour,” said co-owner Mathew Cape. Cape and his business partner, Spoon Singh, also own The Larchmont, a converted Craftsman house located on the corner of Lucerne and Melrose. For years the space operated as a restaurant, but last fall the two men transitioned it into a private event venue.

Leasing Office 6200 West 3rd St. 877-418-7027

421 S. Van Ness Ave. #16 | $920,000 This town home is located in the heart of Hancock Park in Third Street School District. Resort-like grounds features lush landscaping and a sparkling community pool & spa, high ceilings throughout, garage with side by side parking spaces #25 & 26. H.O.A. dues $485/month. Huge living room with fireplace leads to open patio. Kitchen with new granite counter tops leads to the 2nd patio. Huge master bedroom, walk-in closet and bath with hot tub. Second bedroom with open patio, third bedroom is located next to the master bedroom. Laundry inside, garden is professionally landscaped throughout the complex. Open Sundays, 1:00-4:00PM

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119 N. Larchmont Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90004

©2017 Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. All Rights Reserved. Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Each Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage office is owned by a subsidiary of NRT LLC. Coldwell Banker® and the Coldwell Banker Logo, Coldwell Banker Previews International® and the Coldwell Banker Previews International Logo, are registered service marks owned by Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. Broker does not guarantee the accuracy of square footage, lot size or other information concerning the condition or features of property provided by seller or obtained from public records or other sources, and the buyer is advised to independently verify the accuracy of that information through personal inspection and with appropriate professionals.


Restaurant and gourmet market to open this month


Larchmont Chronicle

JaNuary 2018


Real villain exposed in skating drama; Chau sparkles

I, Tonya (9/10): If you enter the picture with a preconceived notion of who Tonya Harding really is, as I did, this will be an eye opening experience. But good as Margot Robbie (who does most of her own skating) and Sebastian Stan and Allison Janney are as Tonya, her hus-

band, Jeff Gillooly, and her Lady Tremaine-like mother, respectively, the actor who stole the movie for me was Paul Walter Hauser playing Gillooly’s buddy, Sean Eckhardt, who turns out to be the real villain in the film. If Gillooly comes across as a witless dope, Eckhardt makes

him appear Einstein-like. While Tonya is shown leading a rough life, the movie plays the “incident” with Nancy Kerrigan more for laughs than tragedy, and it works. The Greatest Showman (8/10): Starting the same way as “La La Land” with a boffo open-

ing (and why not, since Benj Pasek and Justin Paul wrote the lyrics for one and the songs for the other) this is a film with good acting by multi-talented Hugh Jackman and Michelle Williams, along with fine music and dancing. It needs to be because it is certainly not a factual biopic of P. T. Barnum, as most of what is shown here is Hollywood hokum. But Barnum created a fine life relying on hokum, so why not? Despite a shameful gratuitous libel on virtuoso opera singer Jenny Lind, if you want to be entertained instead of informed, this is a movie for you. Downsizing (8/10): I went into this thinking it was really a dumb idea and not expecting much. The idea, if you don’t know by now, is that someone in Norway has created a way to reduce the size of human beings down to five inches without harming their abilities to live as they have. It sounds ridiculous but director Alexander Payne has put it together so that it is believable enough to tell an interesting story. But it is not until Hong Chau enters the picture that the film starts perking. She brings a life and esprit to the film that it sorely needs. Up until her appearance, it was no better than all right. After she appears, it’s as sparkling as a shooting star. All the Money in the World



In December’s movie review Thor: Ragnarok, quotation marks were omitted. The opening sentences should have read: “Maybe every other American movie shouldn’t be based on a comic book. Other countries will think Americans live in an infantile fantasy land where reality is whatever we say it is and every problem can be solved with violence.” The quoted opinion is from Bill Maher.


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(5/10): Despite good performances by Michelle Williams (she’s been busy) and Christopher Plummer, this film deviates so much from what really happened that its authenticity is seriously compromised. It has beautiful London and Rome locations but it takes too long to tell the story, failed the watch test, and terminates with an unnecessary ending so phony that it would embarrass even the late sportscaster Bill Stern (who was famous for making up tall tales and representing them as fact). Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool (5/10): Gloria Grahame (Annette Bening) was a minor Hollywood star who won one Oscar for best supporting actress in “The Bad and the Beautiful” (1952). Although certainly no vedette, I liked her as Ado Annie, the girl who “cain’t say no,” in “Oklahoma!” (1955) and In a Lonely Place (1950) with Bogie. On the plus side Bening gives a good performance. But is Gloria Grahame really worth a major motion picture about the last two fading years of her life concentrating on a relationship with a lover hardly old enough to be her son? Pitch Perfect 3 (2/10): This isn’t the worst movie of the century (there was, after all, an original “Pitch Perfect” in 2012), but it is certainly on the list. Apparently aimed at 13-year-old girls, the puerile story is lowlighted by an infantile script, deplorable (Please turn to page 11)

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January 2018



Asian-inspired cocktails, seafood procession satiate Hollywood gentrification continues unabated, but there’s still a dearth of higher-end restaurant options. For a recent evening at the Pantages Theatre, we eschewed our standby Cleo, still in operation in the shuttered Redbury Hotel, and decided to try Katsuya. It was an artsy way to begin a culturefilled evening. The sophisticated restaurant has edgy graphics and sculptures across walls and ceilings (pouty mouth, giant eyes, metallic swirls) in the dimlylit rooms. Even the bathrooms were high-style and seemingly lit for a clandestine rendezvous. We loved the sinks, which appeared to be floating stone tabletops; water disappeared over their edges through barely noticeable troughs. Katsuya excels at Asianinspired cocktails. We both enjoyed The Dragon, a wellbalanced martini of Grey Goose vodka shaken with yuzu and ginger puree. Rather than tackle the extensive menu, we each ordered the $75 Tasting Menu, a succession of Executive Chef/ Owner Katsuya Uechi’s signature dishes. First up, albacore sashimi with crispy onions, a lovely contrast in textures between the silken slightly seared fish and the crispy thincut onions. Next was a chewy version of crispy rice with spicy tuna (grilled rice topped with a spoonful of chopped tuna). Then came yellowtail sashimi

At the Movies

(Continued from page 10) acting, unappealing characters and lots of 21st-century noise masquerading as “music” that is worse than dreadful. Its low quality (no discernable or memorable melodies, insipid lyrics) is masked by outstanding production values and loud woofers and tweeters.

On the Menu by

Helene Seifer with jalapeno (a little yuzu and sliced chilies enhance the subtle flavor of the fish). That was followed by creamy rock shrimp in spicy sauce, mild but delectable. A delicious ceviche followed: a variety of chopped fish was tossed with a very light truffle ponzu marinade. For the star course, we could choose between fish or meat, so we got one of each: miso black cod, the buttery fish prepared with fermented soybean paste and sweet mirin rice wine; and two succulent, small, mediumrare wagyu filets with foie gras toppers. The savory procession ended with a trio of salmon, tuna and yellowtail sushi and a warm snow crab soy paper hand roll. Sated, we still bravely accepted the final offering of assorted sweets: a quenelle of chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream and chocolate crumble, chocolate and mango mochi, and Hawaiian bread pudding. Katsuya, 6300 Hollywood Blvd., 323-515-8782. • • • Fancy meals are wonderful, but often an inexpensive quick and tasty tidbit is what’s desired. A new place to consider for that kind of craving is the Chinese dumpling house, Northern Café, which has opened its third Southern California location near the Beverly Center. Fans of “soup” dumplings, where the broth is inside the wrapper, can enjoy $7.50 pork or $8.50 pork-crab versions. They are not nearly as accomplished and ethereal as those at the industry standard Din Tai Fung, but for a minimal invest-

ment one can happily nibble eight of them per order. The plate of 10 pan-fried chicken dumplings are plump and quite tasty, especially when dipped in vinegar and chili paste. The sesame and peanut-sauced dan dan noodles should have been saucier and spicier, but

for $7.50 for a large portion, I was perfectly happy to add various salty and spicy condiments until it was just right. So, too, the $8.50 fried noodles in lao gan ma sauce (Chinese chili) was bland without table tinkering. A burrito-like $6.50 sixpiece beef roll presented thin

slices of cold beef rolled in a lightly fried wrapper with sliced veggies. It was served with a sweet and sour dipping sauce. Northern Café, 8459 Beverly Blvd., 323-592-3493. Contact Helene at

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task together in the time allotted: 16 days, 21 hours and 32 minutes. The ashes are carried in urns housed in knapsacks, worn across their chests, and identified with photos of the deceased: Sara carries Wilson’s urn and Jefferson has Kate’s. To guarantee they stay together, wrist and knapsack alarms go off if the couple strays too far apart. The set up: Sara and Jefferson have opposite opinions on everything, including politics, even though they once were a couple. Are wealthy Wilson

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and Kate controlling their destiny from the other side by this journey they’ve sent them on? The destinations include the Blarney Stone, Pamplona, Wales, Port Merion, where we delve into the more arcane aspects of the TV series “The Prisoner,” Scotland, Belgium, France, Venice, etc. Each place has been chosen for a special reason and Sara and Jefferson grow as they are forced into situations where they face some of their biggest fears while discovering things they didn’t realize about each other. Leaving the ashes in the allotted sites becomes a catalyst for finding insights into their deceased friends and revelations they’ve never admitted about themselves. A local guide meets them at each location with a ticking clock and (Please turn to page 13)

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Ashes to Ashes by Debbie Bolsky is billed as a screwball comedy. Sara (Lena Bouton) and Jefferson (Kevin Young) have been burdened with the task of distributing the ashes of their friends Wilson and Kate in various locations around the world. There is a payoff (Wilson and Kate were super rich). If Sara and Jefferson want the payoff they have to complete the

Larchmont Chronicle

January 2018




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Theatre Review (Continued from page 12)

tickets for their next destination. All these guides are different (gondolier, mime, etc.), and all are played with delightful abandon in a terrific performance by Michael Uribes. He’s also your friendly airline stewardess who will help you

find your theater seat before the show. Director Katherine James has the actors trying too hard to live up to the play’s billing. Through Jan. 14, a visiting production at the Odyssey Theatre, 2055 S. Sepulveda Blvd., 310-564-9410. 3 Stars

Classical and jazz at The Wallis Winter @ The Wallis series includes classical music duo violinist Sarah Chang and pianist Julio Elizalde Sat., Jan. 6 at 7:30 p.m. performing Bartok, Brahms and Franck. The Lula Washington Dance Theatre celebrates the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Thurs., Jan. 11 to Sun., Jan. 13. “Last Thoughts: Schubert’s Final Works,” Sat., Jan. 20 at 7:30 p.m., features Ory Shihor telling the story at the piano and in words. Grammy award-winning Arturo Sandoval is featured on a Jazz Weekend Jan. 25 28. Visit

Monday Lunch: Kerry Brougher

Director, The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures

Join Kerry Brougher for an inside look at The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, scheduled to open in 2019. Monday, January 8 | 11:30 am

Monday Lunch: Paul Kaye

Practical Ways to Increase Your Health and Well-Being

Paul Kaye, of the Peace Awareness Labyrinth & Gardens, will suggest small, concrete changes in your life that result in big payoffs in health. Monday, January 22 | 11:30 am

Live in the Lounge

Jazz Great Charles Owen

Charles Owen, a master of both woodwind and brass instruments who appeared in the film La La Land, will perform for us in the Ebell Lounge. Friday, February 16 | 7:15 pm Doors Open | 8:00 pm Show The Ebell is both timeless and timely with members and activities that will expand your social circle and your mind. Please join us and consider becoming a member. 741 South Lucerne Boulevard - Los Angeles, CA 90005 | For information on tickets or the Ebell, visit, or call 323-931-1277 x 131

Larchmont Chronicle

JaNuary 2018

Refresh your eyes and spirit with a walk through the Camellia Forest at Descanso Gardens, 1418 Descanso Dr., La Cañada Flintridge, Sat., Jan. 20 at 10 a.m. Sample teas from Chado Tea Room while enjoying the camellia blooms Sat., Jan. 27 at 10 a.m. Teas provided by the Chado Room will also be for sale. For more information, call 818-949-4200 or visit

Annual winter plant sale at Payne

Peruse colorful, fragrant native plants and get deals on collector’s items at the Theodore Payne Foundation, 10459 Tuxford Street, Sun Valley, Sat., Jan. 26 and Sun., Jan. 27 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Members will receive 15 percent off plants, seeds and Payne gear; non-members will get a 10 percent discount. For more information, visit



Learn about pruning roses, landscaping with trees, and how to care for your winter garden on Saturdays throughout January at the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Gardens at 301 N. Baldwin Ave., Arcadia. Rose pruning and soil cultivation is Jan. 6. How to landscape with trees is Jan. 13. Hear how to invite nature into your garden Jan. 20. Learn about winter gardening Jan. 27. All classes are 10 a.m. to noon. For more information, visit


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Discover the history and science of plants and get an update on the Huntington’s Rose Garden this month at Huntington Library, 1151 Oxford Rd., San Marino. The rose talk and sale is Thurs., Jan. 11 at 2:30 p.m.

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Larchmont Chronicle

January 2018



Ant-inspired soldiers, Myrmidons, guarded a young Achilles

Bill Bentley

and they naturally followed the great warrior to the siege of Troy. As depicted in the film, they were noted for their fierceness, diligence and devotion to their leader. Hence their name is also applied to any servant or underling who carries out his orders remorselessly. • • • Why is someone who is effeminate, “effete”? queries Paula Sensibaugh. Actually that is only one

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Multiplying cat colonies are unhealthy for cats and humans alike. However, feral and stray cats help control pests such as rodents. The Kitty Bungalow Charm School for Wayward Cats has two programs that can help. The Trap, Neuter and Release program humanely traps feral and stray cats, spays or neuters them, vaccinates for rabies, and then returns them to their colony, where they can continue controlling city pests. The Working Cat program takes cats that aren’t socially conditioned as pets, puting them to work at businesses, where they get shelter, food and protection while controlling the rodent population. Visit

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still, thereby escaping taxation. It’s from the Gaelic poitin, which means little pot. Professor Know-It-All is the



meaning of this very versatile word. It also means infertile, barren, exhausted, and degenerate. It is from the Latin effetus — weakened by giving birth, worn out. • • • Why is a person’s area of expertise his “bailiwick”? ponders Peggy Noonan. It comes from the Middle English baillifwik, which is the early form of bailiff, an officer of the Crown with a particular jurisdiction. • • • Why is some Irish whisky called “Poteen”? queries Patrick Maher. Poteen is Irish moonshine, produced privately in an illicit


I just watched the movie “Troy” when channel surfing. Achilles (Brad Pitt) commands a crack group of fighters, whose name I didn’t catch. Who were they? asks Peter Grass. They were the Myrmidons — literally the ant people — from the Greek word for ant, myrmix. They gained this name from the legend that when the country of Aegina was depopulated by a plague, its king, Aeacus, prayed to Zeus that the ants running out of a nearby oak tree should be turned into men. The Myrmidons eventually emigrated to Thessaly with the banished Peleus, the son of Aeacus and father of Achilles. Achilles grew up with the Myrmidons as his bodyguards


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John, Mary, Andrew (and Lucy) Wish You and Yours a Joyful and Prosperous 2018 May the New Year Be a Time of Joyful New Beginnings

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