‘American Idiot’: new musical, new technology

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The Green Day album-derived musical “American Idiot” opens tomorrow night at Broadway’s St. James Theatre. I haven’t seen it yet, but have been fascinated by the advance buzz on the Broadway chat rooms. Older show people have been dismissing it as another loud, “jukebox” musical in the vein of “Mamma Mia!” (but without that hit’s […] [Read More]
Categories: General

‘Kick-Ass’: America says ‘no thanks’ to pre-teen killer flick

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The keepers of American mainstream movie standards are probably breathing a sigh of relief today over this weekend’s disappointing box-office performance of “Kick-Ass.” The film came in number one in the box-office sweepstakes, but it grossed $11 million less than the pre-weekend $30 million projected take. Based on a popular comic book, the R-rated movie […] [Read More]
Categories: General

‘Fallen Angels’: Noel Coward’s ‘Sex & the City’

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Noel Coward’s “Blithe Spirit” and “Private Lives” get revived frequently, but you don’t hear about too many productions of “Fallen Angels.” The 1925 comedy is about two married London women — best friends for many years — who are excited and horrified by a possible visit from a Frenchman with whom they both had affairs […] [Read More]
Categories: General

Dangerous dames & gruesome guys

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Why do the people who write about crime tend to be so nice? That’s a question I’ve asked myself more than a few times after interviewing everyone from Sandra Brown to Harlan Coben and attending many conferences such as the Bouchercon — the annual international gathering of crime writers and the readers who love them — […] [Read More]
Categories: General

‘Webism’ + Octomom + zombies = n + 1

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Issue Nine of n + 1 is another terrific collection of reviews, fiction and social commentary. Produced in Brooklyn twice a year, the journal is always sane and always funny, but you never know what the crew of writers overseen by Keith Gessen (above, left) and Mark Greif (center, with editor-at-large Marco Roth, right) might zero […] [Read More]
Categories: General

A double dose of newspaper nostalgia at Film Forum

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Manhattan’s indispensable non-profit movie house, Film Forum, launched another of its great revival festivals last weekend — “The Newspaper Picture” — which is set to run through May 6. With the very concept of “the newspaper” in peril, the four-week series is doubly nostalgic. The history of the movies runs parallel to that of the […] [Read More]
Categories: General

‘Leg Work’: the best TV show you never heard of

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Several years before it became popular to film TV series such as “Law & Order” and “Sex and the City” in New York City, CBS gave a greenlight to “Leg Work,” a wonderful show that featured Margaret Colin and Frances McDormand as a private detective and her pal who works in the district attorney’s office. […] [Read More]
Categories: General

Hot fun in the summertime

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Like lemmings, some of us feel a primal urge to head to the ocean every summer. Not necessarily to go in the ocean, but to spread a towel or blanket near the shore, oil up with sun screen, and watch the passing parade. The lure of the beach bridges classes, sexes, races, ages — the whole […] [Read More]
Categories: General