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A late report on ‘Gypsy’

There are theater people who believe Arthur Laurents’ book for the musical “Gypsy” is so strong that it could be done as a straight play without music. The story of Gypsy Rose Lee and her stage mother

Remembering the late, great River Phoenix

Sidney Lumet guided the late great River Phoenix to an Oscar nomination for “Running on Empty,” the sensitive 1988 film about family and politics that the invaluable Warner Archive DVD-on-demand

A guide to romance in New York City

There are more than a few websites and Facebook pages devoted to bitching and moaning about the ever-changing scene in New York City. Each restaurant and dive bar closing is mourned by people who keep

Hollywood in 1970s breakdown mode

As a movie, the 1970 Paul Mazursky comedy “Alex in Wonderland” is only so-so, but for students of Hollywood it’s a vivid time capsule of a transition period in film history. The very eccentric and

Angela Lansbury in her scene stealer days

Warner Archive released a DVD-on-demand version of a long-forgotten 1964 romantic comedy “Dear Heart” starring Geraldine Page and Glenn Ford. The movie was widely panned 52 years ago, and more or less

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

Vintage Books 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

The hits & misses of Broadway’s Cy Coleman

Cy Coleman never received as much attention as two of his Broadway peers — Stephen Sondheim and Jerry Herman — but he had a long, successful and unusually diverse career as a theater composer.

When a movie is better at home

Nine times out of ten, I’m a believer in seeing movies in theaters rather than at home on television, but ever since the introduction of the DVD and its technical improvements in transferring film to

‘People I Know’: the lost Al Pacino movie

You wouldn’t think that a movie starring Al Pacino and Kim Basinger would sit on a shelf for two years and then get a cursory theatrical release that earned only a little more than $100,000. But

The not so discreet charm of Lilli Palmer

The other night as I was scrolling through the nearly endless offerings on the Amazon Prime streaming service, I noticed the 1961 comedy “The Pleasure of His Company” starring Fred Astaire and decided