‘Orson Welles’: the year’s saddest flop

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The gulf between movie hits and flops is wider than ever these days. The other night at a local multiplex large crowds were pouring into one of the auditoriums featuring the 3D blockbuster “Avatar” while “Me and Orson Welles” played to an audience of three (me and my two companions — a fellow reviewer and a […] [Read More]

A terrific thriller for the new year

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It never ceases to amaze me how many good writers are working in the thriller genre these days. Since so many of the best authors work on a book-a-year pace, it can be hard to squeeze in a new writer when you want to read the latest novel by Lee Child, Daniel Silva, Sandra Brown, Christopher […] [Read More]

‘Rome’: perfect for a snowy winter weekend

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HBO pulled the plug on its “Rome” series in 2007 after only two seasons, but I didn’t catch up with the addictive show until HBO Video sent me the recently released “complete series” package. Now that winter is upon us, it’s nice to have some good DVD sets to curl up with over the long and […] [Read More]

Are we experiencing a second ‘Youthquake’?

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The January Vogue has a neat retro 1960s feel thanks to the “Youthquake 2010” banner headline and a wide array of stories and pictures focusing on the way pop culture and fashion are mixing today. It’s a breath of fresh youthful air that will introduce the magazine’s readers to bands such as Vampire Weekend (above), […] [Read More]

Merry Christmas!

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Categories: General

‘Night and Day’: A Korean in Paris

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For an American viewer, the latest film by Korean director Hong Sang-Soo could be called “Culture Clash x Two.” “Night and Day” is about a 40-year-old Korean artist stranded in Paris for a few months while he waits for a drug charge back home to go away. Seong-nam Kim was caught smoking a joint with […] [Read More]

Cleaning out the Columbia vaults

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Movie studios have utilized the compact size of the DVD format for all sorts of interesting multi-disc packages, but it’s hard to make much sense out of the Columbia Pictures “Martini Movies” series. When I first heard about the new Columbia line, I assumed the movies would be kitschy, retro flicks from the late 1950s/early […] [Read More]

‘Rethink Afghanistan’: Obama’s Vietnam?

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Progressive journalist Robert Greenwald has produced strong documentaries about everything from big box stores (“Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price”) to the excesses of Fox News (“Outfoxed”). Through his Brave New Productions company, Greenwald has created a new template for up-to-the-minute, ever-evolving non-fiction filmmaking that combines traditional edited material on DVD with links to […] [Read More]

The life and inebriated times of four ‘hellraisers’

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Equal parts funny and appalling, the new Robert Sellers book “Hellraisers” (St. Martin’s Press) takes us back to the glory days of stage and screen stars Peter O’Toole, Richard Burton, Richard Harris and Oliver Reed. The men represent an earlier era of British theater and film when stars bragged about their drinking and womanizing exploits. […] [Read More]

Rent it now: ‘Cutter’s Way’

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There is lots of Oscar buzz swirling around Jeff Bridges for his performance in the new indie film, “Crazy Heart.” An Academy Award for Bridges is long overdue. He has been delivering fine screen work for almost 40 years, and has never strayed too far from edgy offbeat filmmaking. One of my favorite Bridges movies is the 1981 thriller […] [Read More]