Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Young and the Dead|
Actors: Tyler Cassity, Jay Boileau, Peter Bart, Michelle Best, Brent Cassity
Directors: Robert Pulcini, Shari Springer Berman
Genres: Comedy, Documentary
Studio: Hbo Home Video Release Date: 06/01/2004 Run time: 90 minutes Rating: Nr
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Member Movie Reviews
Janice J. (dizzheart)
Reviewed on 5/19/2015...
I found this movie interesting because I and my family are from LA. My parents and one of my brothers are buried in this cemetery, and I often visit their graves there. Under the previous ownership, it was quite rundown, and the previous owner sold off one of the corner lawns to an auto repair minimall, so the approach along Santa Monica Blvd. is not as pretty as it once was. Apparently although the cemetery proper is an endowment type, and City of LA law says it must remain a cemetery, the outside lawns are not sacred. The new management has done much to repair and restore the grounds. It is now kind of an island in rundown Hollywood. It backs directly onto the back of Paramount Studios; my little brother is buried up against the tin wall of the Paramount prop shops, next to an old silent Western star. I like to think the kid would have liked that.
This documentary hits what I guess the public seeking weird entertainment would like, but to me it's inaccurate and incomplete. Besides being a historic site, there are plenty of ordinary people buried there and it is still open for new burials. My people are buried there becasue it was an affordable cemetery, not fancy, for the middle class. Looking at headstones from the 19th century and wondering who these people were is interesting. They show movies there sometimes, using the white marble wall of Douglas Fairbanks Sr.'s tomb as a screen, and it's a popular place to walk for the neighborhood people. The narrator of this film doesn't really seem to get all that.
Reviewed on 11/4/2013...
Very interesting and engrossing documentary. Good information on cremation.
Kristen W. (Piper) from BEVERLY, MA
Reviewed on 5/19/2008...
This is an interesting HBO documentary on the most famous cemetery in Hollywood, where most of the big name stars are buried, like Marilyn Monroe, Rudy Valentino, etc. If you are a fan of Hollywood culture, or a cemetery buff (!) you will definitely enjoy this.
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
A LITTLE TOO CAMPY AT TIMES
gail powers | Harbor Country, Mi,N. Naples, FL, Chicago area | 05/01/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The plot (if there is one) involves a young man named Tyler Cassity and his attempt to transform an overgrown, sorry excuse for a cemetery into the now beautiful Hollywood Forever. Mr. Cassity moves in a crack group of media savy professionals as his management team and they merge business savy, public relations expertise, and a hefty tranfusion of $$$$ to turn this cemetery around and make it a viable financial venture. They brainstorm new ideas and implement them and you realize that this business is like any other except it is very well run and the management team appears to have a better grasp on the situation at hand then most large corporations these days. The whole story sounds remarkably hokey at times and is reminiscent of a Judy Garland/Mickey Rooney 'let's put on a show' flick on a certain level. However, this is all for real and in spite of
some too cutesy interviews and a couple of oddball participants, the viewer really starts buying into this cemetery of the future concept where memorials are stored in video kiosks and the cemetery becomes the backdrop for a variety of activities that include not only funerals, but other activities such as concerts, parties, and picnics as well.
I'm not certain if I would have bought into this as readily if I had not visited Hollywood Forever before and after its transformation, but I was extremely impressed with the changes I saw. None of the concepts implemented seemed weird when you experience them firsthand.
The entire dvd was engrossing and contained all the essential elements: humor, pathos, romance, tragedy, comic relief, and even some subtle fun poking. The end result is that dying doesn't seem so bad if you're guaranteed a nice resting place at HF with the stars."
The Life in Death
James Hiller | Beaverton, OR | 03/21/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
""The Young and the Dead", part of the HBO series "america undercover", shows a twist to a side of life all of us have yet to deal with. Very reminiscent of the quirky "Six Feet Under" which would follow a year or so after,Once in disrepair, forgotten, and ready for the scrap heap, Hollywood Memorial Park gets a wonderful chance at life again with the resurrection powers of Tyler Cassity, wunderkind of the funeral business. Bringing on a team of visionaries, they not only save the cemetery, but create new ways for loved ones to remember their dearly departed.You get from watching this DVD the sense of honor and pride that the staff at the cemetery has at their missions in life. It honors the history of the place, while helping to bring it into the twenty-first century. Featuring people's stories brings to life the video, especially the internment of Hattie McDaniel,who was denied a spot their fifty years ago because of the color of her skin.I wouldn't recommend purchasing this DVD. It wouldn't be something I'd watch again and again. But I would recommend a viewing of this simple, kind documentary."
Life & Death imitates Art...
A. Calabrese | NJ--United States | 08/20/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"If you have ever read Evelyn Waugh's satirical novel The Loved One or seen the film adaptation of the novel you will find the documentary The Young and the Dead interesting. It seems that Mr. Waugh's satirical view of the funeral and cemetery business in the US is now a reality. This documentary, part of the HBO's America After Dark series, takes a look at the transformation of the run down Hollywood Memorial Cemetery into the Hollywood Forever facility. Just when you think they could not come up with a new spin on the inevitable, the death industry comes up with a new gimmick. At the hands of its owner, Tyler Cassity, this ongoing tribute to dying is a continual work in progress. The film makers, Robert Pulcini and Shari Berman, do a great job of showing how much death is part of life in America. Apparently Mr. Cassity's family is in the corporate cemetery business and own Hollywood Forever and other cemeteries in the Unites States. What is endearing about this film and Tyler Cassity is that they care about the people, both living and dead, who make up day to day life at Hollywood forever. But the whole time I watched this documentary I kept thinking of Rod Steiger as Mr. Joyboy in the movie version of The Loved One. I thought the most interesting part of this film was when it focused on the cemetery's previous owner, Jules Roth. The film's only failing was that there wasn't enough footage of the run down Hollywood Memorial Cemetery and I would like to have seen more information on the corporate cemetery business in the US. As they say, "Only in California." This one is worth seeing."