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The Los Angeles Times from Los Angeles, California • Page 61
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The Los Angeles Times from Los Angeles, California • Page 61

Los Angeles, California
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Journal: Star Trekking by Motor Home Vizi 31 gtlc Zimti IEW "Right up here," she was saying, "you've got your Gary Cooper home, where he lived when.he died. Here's Zsa Zsa Gabor'a home. It looks like a palace. You have Jerry Lewis right here. Herb AU pert, Chamberlain, Julie Andrews, Robert Stack, Sammy Davis Dean Martin, Diana Ross.

"Right here's where Elvis Presley lives. And Tony Curtis' million-dollar home. Mitzi Gaynor's lovely home is here next to Jeanette MacDonald's last home. And here is Hugh Hefner's fabulous $3 million mansion. It's a fine tour." "Hey, Steve," Gene said, "do you want to see 'Some movie stars' Please Turn to Page 4, Col.

1 in mid-morning traffic. Steve, 24, was driving the way he talks, which is in no great hurry, while Gene, who says he is "35 and holding," looked out the window, the breeze stirring his short gray hair as he regarded the fine homes of Beverly Hills. When they saw the sign for "Maps to the Stars Homes," Steve turned right and stopped. "You just follow the red line and look up 'the numbers," the red-haired lady said. She was sitting in a folding chair at the side of the street.

Gene bent over to look at the map in her lap, his hands on the knees of his blue doubleknit slacks. Steve, resplendent in billowing gray trousers and white patent leather platform shoes, climbed out of the motor home and joined them. BY CHARLES T. POWERS TlmM Staff Wrltir Gene Stewart and Steve Lanier operate a sport fishing business in Carolina Beach, and for six months a year they work their tail ends off, 18 hours a day, seven days a week. But the other six months they travel and have a good time.

They rolled into town the other day after a month in Mexico, driving a motor home with a bathroom at one end and a stereo tape deck at the other, riding in magnificent cushioned chairs and seeing Los Angeles for the first time. The motor home, sporting a blue stripe and Carolina plates, lumbered out Sunset a flat clot PART IV THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 7, 1974 4 a xl I i A 1 i I LH i I 1 4 III f5- vvfc i If I At'' :4 2 i i If Ay 4-v- y.H A -l I V- s1. i 1 yr i it IS -x: KnvT rhil' tr r-i 1 i nmmtM-t tw i 1 1 -AaB I PROTESTING CENSORSHIP Susan Strasberg, left, Lee Grant, Helen Reddy and Ellen Burstyn read from "The New Portuguese Letters," a book banned in Portugal. Times photo by Kathleen Ballard Banned Book Draws a Diverse Crowd JACK SMITH A Date With a Dream Boat "During a dream on the couch after dinner tonight, I started browsing through the Ship Movements in The Times. I made my selections of the ships that held the most fascination for me.

What names! What destinations!" Thus began a letter from Duke Russell. I have never met Russell, though he lives nearby in Hollywood, but I am grateful for his occasional letters, which are sometimes wry, sometimes nostalgic, sometimes pure fantasy. This time he had enclosed the Ship Movements chart from The Times of Jan. 23, a daily feature that appears back on the vital statistics page and is ignored, I'm sure, by all but a very few readers. Most of us have noticed it only in the movies.

You know the scene. There is a closeup of Vessels Due to Arrive Today. Alan Ladd runs a finger down the list and stops at the Asia Maru, due at noon from Tokyo. Cut to Veronica Lake at the ship's rail, and Ladd in the crowd on the wharf, looking up. Miss Lake is an international jewel thief, with a cache of emeralds in her luggage, and Ladd is a T-Man.

Ever since that steamy night in Rangoon, when he was with the CIA, he's been crazy about her, especially the way that hank of yellow hair falls over one eye, but if you think that will keep him from doing his duty, you don't know our Ladd. Looking down the list of vessels in port or arriving on Jan. 23, Duke Russell imagined himself boarding the China Sea, out of New Orleans, and running into Peter Lorre, Sidney Greenstreet and Humphrey Bogart. W. C.

Fields was the captain, and not entirely sober. "Just when 1 was having a drink with Clark Gable and Jean Harlow, Andy Hardy's father threw a hand grenade at some Chinese pirates and all hell broke loose Then my daughter woke me up so I could take our dog for a walk, and when I returned, the ship was gone." Russell's game may seem childish for grown men, but when I was a boy I used to hitchhike down to San Pedro and walk along the wharfs and sometimes actually go aboard some creaking freighter whose crew was probably tying one on in Shanghai Red's bar on Beacon St. and whose captain was holed up in his cabin, drinking gin and scheming with Greenstreet. The captain was Oscar Homolka. t.

I suppose that with today's obsession for security, a bov would never be allowed up a gangway, or even near one; but nobody ever seemed to mind me. I trailed my fingers over teakwood rails; looked into holds that reeked of copra; held my breath as I encountered swarthy deck hands in sarongs and headbands. Sometimes I even had the cheek to board some big white liner, in for the day from Hong Kong, its engines breathing softly below as it got up steam for an imminent departure. Once I passed through a grand saloon and caught sight of a ruddy gentleman in a Norfolk jacket and tweed plus fours, sitting in a rattan deck chair and peering at me ever his newspaper with the face of Rudyard Kipling. It wasn't Kipling, of course, but it was someone I knew; someone I had met, no doubt, through a mutual acquaintance, Somerset Maugham.

1 watched them cast off and move slowly down channel on their way out to the romantiedestina-tions whose names were lettered on their sterns Singapore London Cristobal I knew that one day I would sail on one of those departing vessels, and one day I did. If Miss Lake was aboard, however, I never knew it. As a galley hand, I spent most of my time at sea below the waterline. I don't know if the harbor holds any fascination for boys today. Possibly not, with jets that take you to London while you watch a Clint Eastwood double bill.

And anyway the streets of Rangoon -would be clogged with Datsuns and Toyotas. But I looked back through the paper to the Ship Movements just this morning and they are still arriving and departing Bristol Clipper out of Guayaquil Montego out of Hong Kong Royal Viking Sea out of Mazatlan But it's only geezers like me and Russell, I suppose, who know that Bogart and Lorre and Greenstreet and Veronica are also arriving and departing. We know it, that is, until somebody wakes us up and says it's lime to walk the dog. ship was the broader element that united Los Angeles feminists with the Hollywood crowd. Though the majority of those at the reading assiduously avoided the label of feminist presupposes there are masculinists," Dory Previa ia-sisted), they supported the right to free expression for both men and women and saw that as a separate issue from women's rights.

Entertainers and and producers such as Bill Link and Dick Levinson, creators of the TV series Columbo, cited their concern with, censorship in the world; the oppression of Russian writer Alexander Solzhenitsyn, the antipornography ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court. "I feel all art must have free access," said Lea Grant, who joined Susan Strasberg, Ellen Burstyn and Helen Reddy in presenting the reading. Please Turn to Page 6, Col. 1 founder of the famed Actors Studio, was off on a picture.

But like honorary celebrity chairmen of charity events, they had lent their names to the evening. Those who did attend made up an intriguing mix. Perhaps, as sponsor Susan Strasberg said, such mixes are popular in New York where "they make for better parties." But in Los Angeles, most agree, they are a rarity. How often do you see a Rolls and a Toyota parked in front of the same party? Or a velvet suit alongside striped overalls? Combining Ms. Heide, president of the National Organization for Women, in a cause with Beatty seems offbeat casting, to say the least.

Beatty's gossip column reputation would indicate an appreciation for women based on considerations other than their minds. Wade past the interesting names to the issue, however, and you realize a protest against censor BY BETTY LIDDICK Timet Staff Writer One glance at the invitation and you had to agree with Arlie Scott. The gathering she helped plan Tuesday night at Anna and Lee Strasberg's have been "the strangest alliance since the dish ran away with the spoon." -The list of 28 sponsors for the reception," offering Brie, "white mountain chablis and a readying from a feminist book. banned in, Portugal, mixed such richly diverse types as: Women's rights activist WUma Scott Heide, pol- iticians Edmund G. Brown Jr.

and Cathy O'Neill, writers Joan Didion and Waldo Salt, producers Julie and Roger Corman and actor and actress Warren Beatty and Ellen Burstyn. Not all the sponsors attended the reading, of course. Beatty had flown to New York. Strasberg, MOVIE REVIEW Was the West Ever Like This? BY CHARLES CHAMPLIN Times Entertainment Editor "Never give a saga an even break," says the gloating slogan for Mel Brooks' new comedy, "Blazing Saddles," and they don't write ad-lines that come any closer to catching the full, rich flavor of the product. His mock-down, knock-down, bawdy, gaudy, hyper-hip burlesque western is irreverent, outrageous, improbable, often as blithely tasteless as a stag night at the Friar's Club and almost continuously funny.

It is a two-hour revue sketch with overtones of Mad Comics, Lenny Bruce, the National Lampoon and the Old Howard. It is to Zane Grey as Little Orphan Fanny is to Daddy War-buck's wide-eyed ward. It embraces such antic visions as Brooks himself playing both an oblique-eyed lechering governor (named as a very in-joke after a real French vaudeville star whose act was the most bizarre of them all) and a Yiddish-speaking Indian chief. There is also Madeline Kahn (from "What's Up, Please Turn to Page 15, Col. 1 ft' LOS ANGELES PREMIERE Members of the Inner City Repertory Dance Company perform Donald Mc- Kayle's "Songs of the Disinherited," which has gospel -derived taped score.

Ses review on Page 16. Times photo by Larry Bessel THE VIEWS INSIDE The Last Crumbs of Flip's TV Cooky BOOKS: "To Understand Is to Invent" by Robert Kirseh on Page 5. DANCEt Inner City Repertory Dance Company on Page 16. MOVIESs 'The Merchant of Four Seasons" by Kevin Thomas on Page 17. Cinewomen Animation Festival by Kevin Thomas on Page 17.

OPERA: "Aida" by Lewis Segal on Page 16. TELEVISION: "Journey to the Center of the Mind" by Dick Adler on Page 18. son's last show a rambling and listless scattering of what Flip calls "a few last crumbs of the cooky, but everybody knows that the last few crumbs in the box are the best" summons up the inevitable memories of past glories in this same Burbank arena. where Queen Isabella ordered Columbus to "bring me back some of them Ray Charles, records, where Geraldine put on a new wig and then wondered if it made her look too Polish; where a wild tale of a pair of sneakers you ever have a sneaker blow out on you at 40 miles an exploded simultaneously in millions of houses across the country. "I think we've done exceptionally well in keeping the level of writing high," says Flip now acknowledging at the same time that his writing staff has been shaken up as regularly as dwellers along the San Andreas Fault.

It is generous (if Please Turn to Page 18, Col. 1 seemed a good time to ask why the gap between what we see and what we get has become so wide of late. It must first be emphasized that Wilson himself admits no slippage in his show's quality, since it began in September, 1970. In one of his increasingly rare interviews, he comes only as close as suggesting that "perhaps I made a mistake by unloading so many of my characters from the start. If I held back and introduced maybe just one new character Geraldine or.

Rev. Leroy or Freddie-each year, people might have said, 'Look how creative he That could certainly be a part of it the dazzling range of the first year burned up invention like a brushfire. Another possibility, as a distinguished elder statesman of comedy (and Wilson admirer) said recently, is that "Flip is basically a storyteller and there just aren't that many good 6tories around." Listening to his opening monolog on the sea BY DICK ADLER Time Staff Writer Flip Wilson has in the past been such a constant source of laughter and comic invention that there is a natural reluctance to probe into the reasons why his TV program has gone into a sad decline plummeting in quality (admittedly a personal judgment, but one backed up by many conversations with acknowledged Wilson fans) and in popularity (from a regular lock on the Top 10 in his first two seasons to a shaky hold on 39th place in Variety's survey last month). The final Flip Wilson Show of the season and of the current series was taped at NBC last week. Flip never really wanted to do this fourth year; he finally agreed to make just 16 new programs and let the network augment them with specials and reruns of past shows.

Now he is dropping out of weekly television for an open-ended period of rest and recuperation. It AND OTHER FEATURES Dear Abby Page 20 Comics Page 1 9 A'rofogy Page 8 Family Guide 11 Wg Page 2 Joyce Haber 13 Art Buchwafd 3 On View Page 2.

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