‘My Shopping Addiction’: low-end reality TV

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Everyone knows that we are in a new Golden Age of TV when it comes to the best stuff being produced by HBO, Showtime, PBS and even the commercial networks. Most nights, you’d be better off staying home and watching “Homeland” or “Boardwalk Empire” or “Game of Thrones” than venturing out to a multiplex to […] [Read More]

‘Bedlam at the Bijou’: redeeming a misspent youth

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Although I don’t think “Vault of Horror” blogger Brian Solomon needs any help when it comes to talking about 1950s science-fiction movies, I was flattered when he asked me to join him for the first “Bedlam at the Bijou” event tonight at 7 p.m. at the gorgeous downtown Bridgeport venue. Brian is screening two key […] [Read More]

‘Eye’: the woman who invented (and reinvented) herself

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Immortalized as the crazed editor in “Funny Face” and presented as herself in the hit off-Broadway play “Full Gallop,” Diana Vreeland was — up until the emergence of Anna Wintour — the most celebrated woman in the modern history of fashion. Vreeland was one of those very amusing self-invented women who also had a sense […] [Read More]

The very weird Vanity Fair hatchet job on Tom Cruise

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A recent vacation put me several weeks’ behind in my magazine reading, so I just caught up with the much talked-about Maureen Orth Vanity Fair October cover story on Tom Cruise and Scientology. It’s another new low in that terrible journalistic genre — the glossy magazine celebrity cover story. I have as many qualms about […] [Read More]

Coming: William J. Mann explains Barb(a)ra Streisand

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Leave it to ace Hollywood biographer/analyst William J. Mann to come up with a completely fresh look at one of the greatest (and most over-exposed) stars of our time — Barbra Streisand – in his new book “Hello, Gorgeous,” which Houghton Mifflin will publish on Oct. 9. Mann is peerless for his ability to rethink the […] [Read More]

‘The Other Woman’: politics & sex collide (again) in new thriller

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A potent combination of thriller and political expose, Hank Phillippi Ryan’s latest novel “The Other Woman” should keep you happily turning pages as it follows a Massachusetts senate race that begins to melt down. Ryan has a background in politics and broadcast journalism, so the novel’s characters and plotting both ring true. The author has […] [Read More]

‘Red Desert’: when Monica & Michelangelo ruled the arthouses

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Tonight at 6:30 it will be my pleasure to introduce a screening of “Red Desert” at the beautiful Bijou Theatre in downtown Bridgeport. The 1964 picture was the fourth collaboration between the Italian filmmaker Michelangelo Antonioni and the stunning actress Monica Vitti, who served as the writer-director’s muse during the richest period of his career. […] [Read More]

When Hollywood decided to get a little naughty

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From Jan. 27, 2011 – The excellent Warner Archive division of Warner Home Video — which has been releasing made-to-order DVDs of some of the studio’s more obscure titles — has just put out the 1962 Vincente Minnelli drama, “Two Weeks in Another Town,” and it’s a fascinating time capsule from a time when Hollywood […] [Read More]

‘Showgirl’: Bette Midler vs. the Caesar’s Palace Colosseum

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From Sept. 29, 2011 – When Celine Dion finally vacated the 4,000 seat theater Caesar’s Palace built for her in Las Vegas, the list of entertainers who could take Dion’s place was very small. The theater and the five-year contract for Dion was one of the biggest deals in show biz history — it allowed the […] [Read More]

‘Glass Cage’: the return of a notorious 1987 Spanish thriller

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From Oct. 26, 2011 – The packaging for the newly issued Cult Epics DVD and Blu Ray editions of “In a Glass Cage” carries the following John Waters quote on the front cover, “They don’t make art-shockers like this anymore. More intense than Pier Paolo Pasolini’s ‘Salo.’” On the back of the the DVD there’s […] [Read More]