Public Vulgarity and Claire Danes

And other whore stories in post-crackdown clubs. Then, suddenly, a Pygmalion-like transformation.

Over at The Ritz—a show with far fewer costumes—a cast member told me, "Thank God you came on a Saturday evening. Ben Brantleycame to a Sunday matinee!" Another Saturday night brought Charles Busch's Die Mommie Die!, the hyper-funny high-camp melodrama with homages to Dead Ringer, The Big Cube, Hush Hush Sweet Charlotte, and other TCM chestnuts. I giddily spotted the references while a fellow audience member whispered that he wished he were seeing Die Mamma Mia! Die!

Sexy serial killer Anthony Hopkinspremiered his dream within a dream called Slipstream at MOMA and said, "You'll see it's a little strange, deliberately so. It may irritate you . . . but thank you very much." The dreamlike state continued at the after-dinner, where Charlene Rose—the film's Dolly Parton look-alike—told me she recently performed with Rilo Kiley, the band whose guitarist Winona Ryderis hot for. Backstage, Winona told Charlene to give Hopkins her regards. "Sure, what's your last name?" asked Charlene, innocently. "Ryder," said Ryder. "Oh, I hope you don't steal like that other Winona Ryder," cracked Charlene, not realizing. I love this woman. Thank you very much.

By any name, the New York Film Festival closed with Persepolis, the inventive animated film based on Marjane Satrapi's autobiographical graphic novel about an Iranian Eloise growing up through political tumult, a gay boyfriend, and a grandmother who soaks her tits in ice water, even her nipples. In the midst of the Café des Artistes dinner for the film, Satrapi left her ice water on the table to go outside and smoke like a chimney as she fielded my queries. Was her childhood in Iran all bad? "Primo Levi said total happiness doesn't exist," Satrapi replied, puffing away. "Total sadness doesn't exist either. We had our good moments." What brought her the most pleasure? "Smoking in the toilet with friends," she admitted. "I loved putting something forbidden in my mouth in the toilet." And she didn't even have to tap in the stall!

Madison, a venue: Advertising inserts at the Sebastian party. More photos from the night here.
photo: Elena Dahl
Madison, a venue: Advertising inserts at the Sebastian party. More photos from the night here.

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Rather than open the trap door, I'll leave you with total happiness: I hear that in Kimberly Peirce's film Stop Loss, there's a scene where Channing Tatumappears in wet underwear and wrestles. You're lovely, Channing. Why are we still here? Aquí! Aquí!

musto@villagevoice.com

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