Friday, April 6, 2007

John Stockwell Flying out of Hancock Park

SELLER: John Stockwell
LOCATION: South Rossmore Avenue, Los Angeles, CA
PRICE: $3,750,000
SIZE: 5,043 square feet, 6 bedrooms, 4 full and 2 half bathrooms (main house)
DESCRIPTION: Step out of the city into a private, romantic hideaway! Breathtaking at every turn from the lush plantings to the 3rd floor retreat! You'd never know you were on Rossmore. Classic character with fab upgrades, 6 bedroms / 4.5 new baths PLUS 3rd floor w/ powder bath and 1 bed guest hse off spectacular pool. Open professional kitchen, dining and huge media rooms overlook yard & patio w/ outdoor fireplace + BBQ area. Large library and beautiful living room. Over 5500 sq. ft. Celebrity owned. A must see!

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Unfortunately children Your Mama did not know who John Stockwell is and a read through his screen credits did not help. Clearly he's a man who has spent a lot of time working in Hollywood and made enough money to maintain a house like this, but even the photographs leave our mind blank.

Fortunately there's Google and a wee bit more research clarified things for us. This Harvard educated actor got his start on the Guiding Light soap and quickly moved to supporting film roles including as Cougar in Top Gun. Your Mama confesses we never saw that movie. We are not, nor have ever been, fond of watching Mister Scientologist Tom Cruise and his crazy chompers on the big screen, but we understand that many of you will recognize Stockwell from this movie. He went on to play mostly supporting roles in a large number of films and TV movies until his career began to peter out a bit in the late 1990s.

He all but left acting in the 1990s and fronted a band Your Mama never heard of and began to focus on writing and directing which is mostly what the Emmy nominated dude is doing now having recently di-rected a couple episodes of the lezbeeun drama-fest The L Word.

Now that we've all had a minor education on a minor celebrity, let's discuss his Hancock Park area home. Purchased in 1995 for a shocking price of $550,000, Stockwell and wifey Helene must be jumping for joy at their real estate good fortune. Certainly they've put some money into this house, but even after all the improvements they are going to walk with millions from the sale of this property. And bully for them.

The stately shingled craftsman has extensive gardens that Your Mama is concerned might require full time attention. Which means one half of a couple must stay home to clip and prune their life away or a gardener is going to be on the property several times a week running up the landscaping bills into the thousands each month.

Although a lot of care and attention was lavished on the beautiful gardens that drip with wisteria and lilac, not so much care was given to decorating the inside. The house appears to have some desirable features such and original wood floors, a dignified front hall and staircase, and French doors opening to vine wrapped balconies and brick terraces. All very lovely. But we are concerned with some of the Stockwell's furniture choices and the homes strangely unfinished quality when it comes to the decor. Your Mama feels there is not a lot of life in this house. Do the children feel that too?

The dining room is probably the most upsetting and difficult room. It would appear the room is a decent size, but otherwise it's a total loss. The Home Depot chandelier sits way to close to the ceiling, but Your Mama can understand the choice do do this...we would not want to sit at that poorly dressed table and look at the hideous thing either. We appreciate the attempt at eclecticism with the mismatched chairs and bench seating, but unfortunately this attempt is a dismal failure.

With it's red walls the library almost works. Again we see an effort to play down any formality by pairing the bamboo chair with the traditional desk, but again, it's just not working. This does not look like a friendly room to work or whittle away the afternoon looking at internet porn. And although we feel positively about much of the living room furniture, let's not even discuss those awful curtains.

It's on the outside that this house really comes into itself. While we prefer a less English cottage garden, Your Mama does find this backyard to be a pleasant experience. And of course, the small terrace with the outdoor fireplace is an excellent feature.

The guesthouse beside the pool is also a great bonus, but we are concerned this guesthouse is a converted garage. So while it's nice to have someplace to stash less favored guests, it's not so nice to sacrifice covered parking for the automobiles. Particularly in Los Angeles where one's car must be shiny and dust free at all times.

Overall Your Mama thinks the Stockwells have themselves a home that should sell easily. Someone will fall in love with the gorgeous park-like gardens, buy the place and have their nice gay decorator come in and install a whole romantic, shabby chic sort of interior with slip covered furniture, diaphanous curtains, oodles of candles, and potpourri in ornate silver bowls with a little patina on them. We're not saying that's what we'd do, but that's what we would bet the next owner will do. Can't you just see it?

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