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‘54’: salvaging a flop from 1998

The 1998 summer movie “54” was widely panned and it bombed at the box office, but it wasn’t the film the writer-director Mark Christopher intended for us to see. A series of disastrous pre-release test screenings — in front of teen audiences drawn in by the popularity of featured actors Neve Campbell and Ryan Phillippe […] [Read More]

Bad Movies We Love: ‘Orca’

Being a fan of Charlotte Rampling means watching some of the most seriously bizarre films ever made. Since she started working in movies 50 years ago, the British actress has veered from art house classics (“The Damned”) and major Hollywood films (“The Verdict”) to goofy junk like John Boorman’s sci-fi nightmare “Zardoz” (with Sean Connery’s […] [Read More]

Happy Independence Day!

Categories: General

‘My Salinger Year’: coming of age in the publishing world

Vintage Books has published a paperback edition of Joanna Rakoff’s justly acclaimed 2014 memoir, “My Salinger Year,” about her first post-college New York City job at a literary agency. Rakoff had no way of knowing it at the time of her hiring, but she was about to get a glimpse of an old school book […] [Read More]

‘Summer Secrets’: a beach book with an edge

Jane Green has been shaking up her style and her approach to storytelling in recent novels. Rather than coast on the wit and charm that made early books like “Jemima J” and “Mr. Maybe” so popular, Green has been tackling tougher personal issues in powerful domestic tales. The writer has often said that her first […] [Read More]

Blessed Unrest presents ‘Body’ at New Ohio Theatre

In a culture awash in entertainment and information that is easily downloaded at home, the theatre faces new challenges with its seemingly archaic demand that we show up at the same time and same place as the actors who will only tell their stories face to face with a live audience. “Any given night, you […] [Read More]

Happy Days’: optimism on the edge of the abyss

The 1961 play “Happy Days” is drenched in the gallows humor of Samuel Beckett. Blessed with the Irish gift of turning life’s most hopeless experiences into black comedy, the playwright was able to find laughs in human lives that he clearly believed were meaningless but ridiculously funny. The situation faced by Beckett’s “Happy Days” protagonist, […] [Read More]

‘Hideaway’: mourning an addict’s death

The French writer-director Francois Ozon had a taste of U.S. mainstream success with his 2003 thriller, “Swimming Pool,” in which Charlotte Rampling played a suspense novelist who began to get lost in her own morbid imagination. The film wasn’t exactly a smash hit, but it received much wider circulation than the average import — including […] [Read More]