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Gene Wilder, who established himself as one of America’s foremost comic actors with his delightfully neurotic performances in three films directed by Mel Brooks; his eccentric star turn in the family classic “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory”; and his winning chemistry with Richard Pryor in the box-office smash “Stir Crazy,” died early Monday morning at his home in Stamford, Conn. He was 83.

A nephew, the filmmaker Jordan Walker-Pearlman, confirmed his death in a statement, saying the cause was complications of Alzheimer’s disease.

Mr. Wilder’s rule for comedy was simple: Don’t try to make it funny; try to make it real. “I’m an actor, not a clown,” he said more than once.

With his haunted blue eyes and an empathy born of his own history of psychic distress, he aspired to touch audiences much as Charlie Chaplin had. The Chaplin film “City Lights,” he said, had “made the biggest impression on me as an actor; it was funny, then sad, then both at the same time.”

Mr. Wilder was an accomplished stage actor as well as a screenwriter, a novelist and the director of four movies in which he starred. (He directed, he once said, “in order to protect what I wrote, which I wrote in order to act.”) But he was best known for playing roles on the big screen that might have been ripped from the pages of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.

He made his movie debut in 1967 in Arthur Penn’s celebrated crime drama, “Bonnie and Clyde,” in which he was memorably hysterical as an undertaker kidnapped by the notorious Depression-era bank robbers played by Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty. He was even more hysterical, and even more memorable, a year later in “The Producers,” the first film by Mr. Brooks, who turned it into a Broadway hit.

Mr. Wilder played the security-blanket-clutching accountant Leo Bloom, who discovers how to make more money on a bad Broadway show than on a good one: Find rich backers, stage a production that’s guaranteed to fold fast, then flee the country with the leftover cash. Unhappily for Bloom and his fellow schemer, Max Bialystock, played by Zero Mostel, their outrageously tasteless musical, “Springtime for Hitler,” is a sensation.

28 August 2016 @ 10:36 am
At the end of the school year one of the parents brought her favorite movie for us. I finally got a chance to watch it yesterday.

Basic plot: Conning her way into a job as a caregiver, a teenage runaway (AnnaSophia Robb) forms a bond with an 11-year-old autistic girl (Taylor Richardson) and the child's mother (Famke Janssen).

Sammi plot: The story does a good job of showing a lower-functioning child within a family setting. A touching story and a good movie!
25 August 2016 @ 08:44 pm
24 August 2016 @ 10:48 pm
22 August 2016 @ 06:56 pm
My Aunt Debbie sent me a wonderful new cabinet to hold all my treasures from around the world. It's perfect!

The original display:

My new display:
21 August 2016 @ 08:20 pm

I clearly have to head to Covington next...
21 August 2016 @ 05:59 pm
Today I got my haircut and dyed. We're calling the color Cherry Cola. I love it!

20 August 2016 @ 10:12 pm
Today we went to Brent and Becky's Bulbs in Gloucester for the honeybee festival! Ms. Bee had a beautiful table set up with her beauty products. We also toured around and checked out the flowers. A wonderful day!