When I attend movie screenings, it’s either in support of the fellow actor and industry folk or it’s because I get to see a free film before everyone else. I have my fair share of likes and dislikes when watching films. I decide if it’s something that I would want to watch on repeat in the comfort of my own home, or just to say that I watched it first hand. Typically, I’m a huge fan of horror films as well as psychological films; the movies that give you nightmares or make you act out, what would you do in those same scenarios, definitely not a fan of comedy to say the least, but somewhere in the middle, I’ve thoroughly found a love for “coming of age ” films. You know the films you can relate to where you had little to no responsibilities in life once upon a time. I can definitely say that I have a soft spot for any film that leaves me wishing I could go back in time to relive those same moments, and Lady-Like just so happens to be one of those reminders.
Bliss. That’s ultimately how I felt after watching this witty sex driven comedy Lady-Like. When I received an invite to attend the premiere screening, I didn’t know what to expect. I hadn’t heard of the film nor seen any previous previews. When my friend Karla forgot to send me the details in the invite, I ended up doing my own research coming across a religious organization for young women as well as some video clips from BuzzFeed. Once she sent me the breakdown and seeing that there would be food as well as an open bar, I was all in. I had the feeling that this wasn’t going to just be a night of watching a film with young actors but more of an evening with mixing and mingling among other creatives in different realms of the entertainment industry. All screenings that I’ve attended have been different in some way, shape or form. Some are artsy and others are another excuse to throw a party while also capturing the up and coming talents in Hollywood among the many actors that audition for the parts. I can always admire the drive in what it takes to truly dive into acting as a career not knowing how long that moment of perseverance might last.
The event started at 7:30 at the Academy of Motion Picture and Sciences, which I pass almost every day on my way home from work. I arrived early and waited in my car for my friend Karla who wasn’t able to arrive until the starting of the screening, so I took it upon myself to check us both in so that I could get us good seats. Within moments of getting out of my car, people started flocking to the check-in table. It wasn’t too long before the screening started, but the pink carpet step and repeat was filled with guest as well as those taking advantage of the open bar. In the midst of the crowd, I immediately spotted and made eye contact with one of the actors whom I had Googled prior to my attendance. The gorgeous eye candy, Zak Steiner, who actually was one of the main reason why I opted to seeing this film. I tried not to get distracted by diving into the social scene while I noticed guest holding on to red cups as if it were a backyard party and continued to make my way up the stairs to the theater.
I didn’t know what to make of this environment, as it was a mix of what appeared to be young teenagers dolled up as if to attend a school dance, Hollywood socialites and elites as well as those who just work in all fields of the entertainment business. I felt a bit out of place at first which didn’t help an embarrassing moment with a wardrobe malfunction, but I hurried into the auditorium before it became too filled up to find a seat. Normally with screenings, there’s always seats that are specifically reserved for talent and production, but surprisingly, signs were scattered, so I chose to sit a little closer to the front. The minute I made myself comfortable, I realized I was sitting right in front of actor Zak Steiner and his group of equally attractive friends. When I tell you that this guy is attractive, I’m not referring to the idea of him just being some hot guy you often see out at a model casting or walking down the street as you do a 360 turn just to gawk at. He is stardom. He stands out in a crowd. In fact, he is what I would assume to find on the red carpet with the likes of the Hemsworth brothers, Colton Haynes, Ryan Guzman and Ryan Pettyfer. All the types of guys I use to associate with in the beginning stages of their careers. Fifteen to ten years ago when I use to run around in Hollywood with all the socialites and elites, Zak would’ve most definitely been the guy I either recruited into my social circle or sunk my teeth into. But that was then and this is now, so it was a bit difficult acting as the mature woman that I’m obligated to be.
Time was moving closer to the premiere of Lady-Like and Karla still hadn’t arrived. I was getting a little nervous that she wasn’t going to make it in enough time to make her way up to the front, but luckily, she texted me only a few minutes after it had already started and I flagged her down with the dim light of my phone.
The film Lady-Like, had its funny moments with tons of dirty jokes. A fun reminder of when I lived so carelessly. At times, I found myself familiar with the character Allie, played by Stephanie Simbari, the sex craving introvert who finds herself being the third wheel to her best friends new relationship. I’ve had a very interesting group of friends throughout my life from the time I was in elementary to the early adult years in my life. I could easily attach many character traits to her character which made the film easy to relate to. Other Lady-Like actresses; Olivia Luccardi, Maddie McGuire, Corinne Mestemacher, Sara Moliski and Allie Gallerani, also played key rolls in the film that showed a sense of a sisterhood without the judgment of what it’s like to be comfortable with ones sexuality. This is something that quite often is a representation with women, especially starting at a younger age where they become more aware and comfortable of their sexuality. Sadly enough, I was a virgin prude and even had a strict virgin club in high school, but thinking back, there really wasn’t much shame among my girlfriends and I was actually the one who was weird to hold out for so long.
After the film, each actor, as well as the young director, Brent Craft, were asked to introduce themselves to the audience where they could further discuss the making of the film. Brent had made a tearful speech thanking his mother who had traveled from Florida in support of his film. That’s where I saw the gratitude and humility in every word that he had said. He spent less time speaking of his success in making this film and more time acknowledging every person that helped to make it happen as well as thanking those who he had felt were so advanced in their careers that they even took on the roles that were offered to them. His modesty spoke a lot about where he plans to go furthering his career as a new director and I admired him for that. It’s been a few years since my acting days, but watching this group of up and coming actors being fully supported by family and friends alike made me miss the connection that one has when pursuing this tough business.
Afterwards, we were asked to enjoy the remainder of the evening with pizza and drinks downstairs in the lobby area and that’s when the fun started.
Either I had complete tunnel vision when I first walked into the building, or they had a team of ninjas to set up the entire downstairs area resembling the theme of the movie. Everything was frosted in pink from the flower wall to the wait staff wearing pink robes that Stephanie’s character hilariously wore during a drunken fit in the film. Karla and I wanted to start off with the flower wall before a crowd of females wanted to do the same, and so we rushed over where another group of girls were standing before us.
I decided to make a trade off with a few girls standing near by that if I were to take their photos, that they would return the favor. Unfortunately, I had a difficult time trying to comfortably position myself in front of the letters with the tightest jumpsuit that I chose to wear for the first time. This thing was tight as well as thicker than a waist trainer. I didn’t have enough time to go home and change into a completely different outfit but my attire was showing that I’m a girl who clearly likes to eat and I eat well. The lighting was not all that flattering either for my dark complextion, so it took us quite a few times to get a few shots, but after awhile, I was ready to browse the rest of the room and so we thanked the girls and made our way over to the open bar.
Behind the flower wall was a pink beer pong table which surprisingly, no one was playing. I didn’t think of it as just being some over sized prop object, but something just to add a little more character to the room. The movie is based off a group of young college girls and one of the main activities in the film was beer pong. A college game like you would find at any give party with a group of young adults. Maybe the majority of the room were too toffee nosed or maybe they were lead to believe that it was just a set-up for show. Had I of not been so concerned with taking photos and finding moments to write about, I probably would have been the first to break the ice and enjoy it while it was there.
At the bar, they were serving another common factor of the movie, wine. That’s primarily what the female characters drank among themselves when conversing about their sex drive and boy problems, so of course it only made sense to serve exactly that as well as other options. I was a bit bummed that there were a bunch of whiskey drinkers in the room as I had missed out on a whole bottle of it before the party even begun. On each table top, bowls of condoms with the Lady-Like logo were out in the open for just about anyone to take. Now I know I tend to be a prude and sexually selective in the men that I choose to pursue or even allow to pursue me, but with a bowl of free condoms, I was surprised that really no one was taking any. Two girls had looks on their faces as if they were saving themselves for eternity, but I couldn’t help myself and took a handful just in case I decide to be inspired by this movie and live freely.
The Lady-Like character, Allie, was prone to stuffing her face in the film when she soon realized she was losing her best friend to the hot new transfer student, Daniel. So what do most girls tend do when depressed. We like to eat. Well at least the most of us. Myself, I just like to eat any time of the day and if there’s a plate of food around. Cut up pizza slices were being passed around by young women in similar pink robes Allies character had worn, but I was ultimately surprised at how well the robe stayed on where even I need a hair clip to keep mine in place after a shower. I didn’t bother to ask as I was more interested in the food, but I thought it was a cute addition to add to the theme of the film. A display of bubble gum pink cupcakes lined up on a shelf toward the wall with the social media handling, Lady-Like, in order to post. Just like the beer pong table, I didn’t see anyone taking much interest until I saw just one woman shamelessly taking the first cupcake. The moment I made contact with her as if to get the signal that we were in the clear to help ourselves, I took one too and threw it in my face.
I still wasn’t all that thrilled with the original photo from the flower wall I had taken, so I wanted to try again and see if I could get a better shot that I actually wanted to use. Low and behold, the tall and handsome Zak Steiner was standing near by. He seriously stands out in the room with the appearance of a prince charming Disney character. I didn’t want to be that one person who just had to ask for a photo but it was his gentleness that made it easy to ask to take one as well as compliment him on his performance. His character, Daniel, played the love interest of Kort and just like in his film being the perfect sweetheart, he was more so when I approached him. Even when he had to step away to say hi to a friend, and as I waited patiently, he came right back to talk to myself and Karla. I just wish I would’ve fixed my girls not realizing that they were clearly out and about doing the utmost.
Zak wasn’t the only one who I found extremely personable. Actress Corinne Mestemacher, who played Pam, was just as pleasant. It’s only natural for actors to socialize with admirers and fans when celebrating their work, but Corinne was magnetic because of her down to earth personality which was the exact reason for why she got the role. She was upbeat, lighthearted and warm all in one. Her character was that friend that you could talk to with just about anything on your mind. She was funny, smart, quirky and enjoyable to watch as she balanced out the group of women in the film without being overly crude like her fellow sisters. In person, she was just as likable. We spoke about her interest in film as well as writing and what she plans to do in the future. Just by being around her aura and energy, I can genuinely see her going far being just as successful and possibly the next Jennifer Lawrence in the pursuit of her career. Most importantly being that I have an odd obsession with red heads, I’m definitely cheering for her career as we need more time-less angelic beauties in this industry.
There was so much going on and Karla and I still didn’t make our way to the step and repeat, which is something that I’m starting to warm up to over time. A group before us asked to do the same trade off that I always offer, which is to take a photo for someone as long as they’re willing to take a photo for you. I always thought I was the only one who thought out that game plan, but sometimes, not everyone knows how to actually take a decent photo. I’m black and dark skinned at that, so I need proper lighting and zooming techniques. While the young guy was having trouble trying to get the perfect shot of me, another guy near by took charge by showing him how it was done. I would’ve figured him for a photographer as easy as he made it look when he took it upon himself to be my personal photographer without even asking. He most importantly managed to take a few quality candid shots which is something that I prefer the most. This is what I like in evenings like this, especially as a blogger. Just being able to have fun and take in the moment one step at a time. Sometimes I get so caught up with working under the radar that I don’t really get a chance to work the room in my natural self without a phone in hand.
We made our way back toward the main lobby area with the rest of the guest and made it a point to make our rounds one more time before we needed to leave. We wanted to speak to each actor including the director himself, but there was only one of them and a lot of guest who also requested their attention. Luckily, Actress Stephanie was standing close enough for us to grab her attention before she stepped outside. I find it so interesting how different a person appears from being both on and off screen. Stephanie is absolutely adorable in person as well as kind. I almost didn’t recognize her from when she had first made her way up on the stage after watching the film. Her style showed that she is a true fashionista at heart with just as much sass as the character that she portrayed. We didn’t get a chance to really speak with her about her role as she had her friends waiting patiently near by, so out of respect, I just wanted a photo with the talented actress.
Karla and I decided to end our night a little early. If I hadn’t attended this movie screening, I would have missed out on a pretty incredible night. Not so much because it was just another networking opportunity or evening to get a free drink at a bar, but because it truly opened up my mind to live life to the fullest, or at least as best as I can. I’ve spent more recent times prioritizing my ideal perfect life of finding a husband, having a family and focusing on my career that I tend to back burn the little things that make me endlessly happy. From the past years where I was so frivolous and quite often relaxed. This film brought back those memories, and not a lot of times do I find that films are capable in doing that. This is definitely the film you want to check out with a group of your friends. Similar to when I shared those night with my roommates watching Sex in the City. You can find this film on iTunes as well as Amazon and I hope you find your bliss in watching it!
Who says you can’t have fun while keeping it Lady-Like!
I’m not a movie critic and am only describing my entire night in relations to this film