‘Val’ doc is touching, brave
Everyone’s praising Val Kilmer’s doc. Predicting that even his own ancient footage will cop an award. On Amazon Prime Aug. 6, “Val” swings from age 26 in 1986’s “Top Gun” to now, 61, after a tracheotomy. The contrast? Mind-blowing. He’s also co-producer.
Back then, a difficult pretty boy. Now, a frustrated artist. Without a voice. The film feels brave. Few would allow being seen as Kilmer — changed appearance, vulnerable, humiliated. To continue to make a living and reliving past glories, it will touch the industry’s many overlooked artists.
My favorite Kilmer memory: One sweltering summer day years ago this famous, gorgeous guy drove from Boston. He was to visit me. My housekeeper was in but I’d left for a previous appointment. Val undressed, picked a john and helped himself to a shower. Not your usual guest.
Val wore shorts, T-shirt and sandals. Later on I was to join friends in an upscale restaurant. I said he couldn’t come along dressed like that. He went out, spent thousands, bought himself a suit, shoes, socks, a shirt and tie and joined us for dinner.
Val Kilmer is — and was — one of a kind.
Pay attention . . .
Chris Rock, at Lure Fishbar in Soho, not only paid the bill and took a photo with a fan, but kept his pals laughing with tales about stand-up . . . Reviewimg Scarsdale’s Central Park Studio dance class, Paula Abdul complimented them on FaceTime and offered future ideas . . . Chevy Chase’s antique “Fletch” character playing an investigative reporter is now reborn with Jon Hamm, Marcia Gay Harden and Kyle MacLachlan. Filming in a Worcester, Mass., police station, the newie “Confess, Fletch” is doubling for a Boston precinct . . . Note to serial lover J.Lo who lopes into the fast lane so quickly her nickname’s EZ-Pass: Hon, rekindling an old flame that once got thrown out is like having your appendix put back in.
Da Vinci still enthralls
Da Vinci, who hasn’t picked up a crayon in 500 years, is running hot. His tiny sketch of a bear’s head just brought millions. Now comes “The Lost Leonardo,” a Sony Pictures Classics about that infamous “Salvator Mundi” canvas. The film is the inside look behind the most expensive painting ever sold — $450 million. Claimed as a long-lost da Vinci masterpiece, purchased from a shady auction house, the buyers discovered masterful brushstrokes beneath its cheap restoration. This “Salvator Mundi” fate gets driven by an insatiable quest for fame, money and power. But comes the question, is said painting actually by Leonardo? Its answer has unravelled agendas of the world’s richest people and most powerful art institutions. “The Lost Leonardo” reveals the truth secondary and vested interests primary. The film opens Aug. 13.
Patsy’s is backsies
Pasty’s, West 56th’s Italian restaurant, has been open 77 years. Sinatra used to sneak in through a hidden entrance. Although it closed temporarily, not even the pandemic could shut it down forever. Sal Scognamillo just reopened it and every single table’s been taken.
Get ready ‘Son’
Last year we had “The Father.” Anthony Hopkins won the Oscar. This year we get “The Son,” from the same playwright — Florian Zeller. Wo knows, maybe next year we get “The Grampa.” Hugh Jackman, Laura Dern and Oscar nominee Vanessa Kirby star. It’s about adolescent depression. Filming starts overseas next month.
A Jerry Seinfeld quote: “Whatever group you hang with is the group you have. At a certain age you don’t anymore need to accept new applications. Any person comes up and seems pleasant, best to do is say: ‘You seem really nice but the thing is, we’re simply not hiring anybody right now.’ ”
And that whiskbroom is for Only in New York, kids, only in New York.