10. DVD: Conversation Piece
The penultimate film (now on DVD) from legendary (and gay) Italian director Luchino Visconti (Death in Venice) is one of his most opulent (costumes by Yves Saint Laurent!) masterworks. Visconti's longtime lover Helmut Berger and Burt Lancaster star in a gripping tale of a retired American professor dealing with a vulgar Italian noblewoman and her companions.
9. BOOK: Born to Be Brad, Brad Goreski
In this heartfelt memoir (It Books, $24.99) the bow-tied star of Bravo's It's a Brad Brad World recalls his Canadian childhood, during which his parents sent him to a “doctor” to try to cure his homosexuality, and how he escaped the cruel taunts of bullies by reading fashion mags and honing his skill as a stylist with Barbie dolls.
8. DVD: @Suicide Room
In Jan Komasa's riveting techno-thriller (now on DVD), Dominick (charismatic Jakub Gierszal), a wealthy Warsaw teen, is taunted by classmates after they catch him kissing a boy. He eventually takes refuge in the virtual world of “the Suicide Room” to escape the torment of bullying.
7. THEATER: The Color Purple
The sapphic love between Celie and Shug Avery is only slightly more explicit in the soul-stirring musical adaptation of Alice Walker's Pulitzer Prize–winning novel than in the famously de-sexed Spielberg film, but it's still one of the few Broadway musicals — if not the only one — to depict a love affair between women of color. Opens tonight at West Hollywood's Celebration Theatre.
6. EVENT: Voiced! Silver Lake's Female Festival
With performances of The Vagina Monologues, film screenings, and live comedy, this is more than just an estrogen overload, it's your chance to celebrate sisterhood and the voices of female performers. Saturday through April 30 at the Lyric Hyperion Theatre in Los Angeles. Proceeds will benefit the downtown L.A. Women's Center. For more information, go here.
5. TV: Fashion Star
The life of one of 14 unknowns — including out designer Kara Laricks — will be forever changed by host Elle Macpherson and celebrity mentors Jessica Simpson, Nicole Richie, and John Varvatos, in what's billed as "an exhilarating fashion show that's unlike anything seen." The much-anticipated new series will also feature musical performances, dancers, and models in front of a studio audience. Premieres Tuesday on NBC.
4. BOOK: Disclosed Desires, Roberto Chiovitti
Are you ready to explore the darker side of desire? Fetishes have rarely looked as enticing as in these evocative and explicitly erotic portraits of lust, pain, dominance, and submission that mark Italian photographer Chiovitti's first book (Bruno Gmünder Verlag, $44.99).
3. BLOG: Dreams Are What Le Cinema Is For ...
Ken Anderson's hypnotic blog — fabulously illustrated with movie screen caps — takes its title from a lyric from the musical Nine, so it's not surprising that his insightful writing about his lifelong love affair with movies is so deliriously entertaining. You'll fill up your Netflix queue after reading Anderson's reappraisals of an eclectic mix of films, including the heretofore unappreciated Ann-Margret vehicle Kitten With a Whip and one of Streisand's lesser musicals, On a Clear Day You Can See Forever, which are written with the same zeal as his takes on acknowledged masterpieces such as Robert Altman's sprawling Nashville. Read more here.
2. MUSIC: "Girl Gone Wild," Madonna
Every released snippet from Madge's upcoming MDNA opus makes it more hotly anticipated, and with this second single it's clear she's not only about to burst out of her bra in the cover art, she's also ready to cut loose on the dance floor. With lyrics such as "The room is spinnin' / It must be the Tanqueray," it's fun, not profundity on her mind. Call it reductive if you will, but this scorching club trance is her best since "Get Together." Listen to it here and watch a teaser of the video here.
1. TV: Game Change
One of our most dependable allies, Julianne Moore, delivers a searing performance as equality opponent Sarah Palin in HBO's unmissable film adaptation of the best-selling book about John McCain's 2008 presidential campaign. Ed Harris is perfect as McCain and Woody Harrelson is a hoot as campaign strategist Steve Schmidt. While Palin's proximity to the White House was a terrifying prospect to many people, there's inherent humor here as both men slowly realize the mistake they made adding the Alaska governor to their ticket. Plus Moore's expression as she watches Tina Fey impersonate Palin on Saturday Night Live is a meta moment for the ages. Premieres Saturday on HBO.