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‘Control’: The Joy Division photo that launched a movie

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The 2007 bio-pic, “Control,” about the short but influential life of the English band Joy Division, didn’t get much theatrical play in this country, but it is well worth seeking out on DVD. Director Anton Corbijn became famous for the moody photographs he’s made of rock groups and musicians over the past 30 years, including many sets […] [Read More]
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thefall

‘The Fall’: giving equal time to a killer

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Netflix announced some good news yesterday — the just-aired season two of the electrifying British crime series “The Fall” will become available for streaming in the U.S. on Jan. 16. When season one debuted last year on BBC2 it became the highest rated drama on that network in 10 years and it has been generating […] [Read More]
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madwomen

‘Mad Women’: ad world’s good old/bad old days

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Jane Maas has been a major player in the New York advertising scene since the 1960s, so she is the perfect person to contrast real life there with its fictional depiction on the AMC series “Mad Men.” St. Martin’s Griffin published “Mad Women” in which Maas shares her delightful and not so delightful memories of […] [Read More]
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On Location For "The Dark Knight Rises"

‘Searching for Debra Winger’: still sad, still true

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It took me a decade to catch up with Rosanna Arquette’s 2002 documentary “Searching for Debra Winger” but the film’s downbeat take on Hollywood’s treatment of actresses still seems accurate. Inspired by Winger’s sad and somewhat puzzling decision to back away from her movie career in the mid-1990s, Arquette wandered around for months at the turn […] [Read More]
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The Science of Comedy

‘Lapin Agile’: dueling geniuses in 1904 Paris

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Steve Martin’s 1993 play “Picasso at the Lapin Agile” is a getting a terrific production at Long Wharf Theatre in New Haven through Dec. 21. Once again, artistic director Gordon Edelstein has assembled and coached an ensemble of actors to look like they have been working together for years. The timing of the jokes could […] [Read More]
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happyvalley1

‘Happy Valley’: digging into the Penn State scandal

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In his new documentary “Happy Valley,” Amir Bar-Lev takes a remarkably even-handed look at the scandal that erupted in 2011 over charges of pedophilia connected with the football program at Penn State. Day to day reporting of this sort of case is often notoriously unreliable, as prosecutors leak all sorts of explosive charges and rumors […] [Read More]
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heights1

Rent it now – the forgotten 2005 indie ‘Heights’

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“Heights” was one of the dozens of American indies tossed into art houses in 2005, where the picture sank without a trace. Even devoted movie buffs give a blank stare when the film is mentioned. Director Chris Terrio’s debut is a sharp and well-acted portrait of Manhattan arts lifestyles. The picture was made under the auspices of Merchant […] [Read More]
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realthing

‘The Real Thing’ back on Broadway for third time

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Neither a hit nor a miss, the Roundabout revival of “The Real Thing” is a baffling, mediocre remounting of a Tom Stoppard play, about the mysteries of love, that won multiple Tony Awards in its first two Broadway productions. Mike Nichols directed the New York debut of the comedy-drama in 1984 (below) to great reviews […] [Read More]
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