Monthly Archives: June 2018

Book Review: “The Mirage Factory” zeroes in on the three people who “made” LA and the Hollywood Dream

I’ve read a bit about LA’s infamous victory in “The Water Wars” that ensured this parched pueblo would become the megalopolis it is. And of course, I’ve seen “Chinatown” countless times. And I’ve read and watched documentaries about D.W. Griffith, … Continue reading

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BOX OFFICE: “Jurassic” gins up $145, “Incredibles” drops to $84

These of the days of “Jimmy Crack Corn, and I Don’t Care” at the movies. Studios release middling, juvenile but big and brawny blockbusters, and the critics don’t care. The movies may stupid money, and the studios don’t care about … Continue reading

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Netflixable? Chloe Grace Moretz is a reporter suffering from a mystery illness in “Brain on Fire”

They used to be called “disease of the week,” melodramas about some heroine or hero fighting a strange, usually deadly illness filmed and consigned to the weak midweek time-slots of network TV. Not all of them migrated to Lifetime. “Brain … Continue reading

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Weekend Movies: Pans for “Jurassic,” “Catcher,” raves for “Damsel” and “King”

In sports, they call it a “make good” call. You blow your evaluation of one play, and bend over backwards to find a way to benefit the player/team your previous mistake hurt. It happens in film reviewing, too. When the … Continue reading

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Preview, Lea Seydoux and Ewan McGregor let a “Synthetic” Theo James come between them in “Zoe”

It’s science fiction about a near future where compatibility can be ascertained well in advance, in which synthetic people are showing up on shelves and being taught to act more human.’ Ewan and Lea are the couple whose prototype (James) … Continue reading

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Movie Review: Icelandic Grudges get grim “Under the Tree”

It helps to remember these people were Vikings, once. Get past the whole polite and smiling, tourist-friendly, global-financial-crisis exacerbating blondes taking daily dips in the volcanic hot springs, the almost unpronounceable names, the grey-black landscape of lava usually covered by … Continue reading

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Netflixable? Boseman’s still got the African accent as he stalks LA with his “Message from the King”

Since achieving leading man status, Chadwick Boseman’s made a couple of decent and dignified if stolid biopics, and a musical one that ventures from pathos to cruelty and all the way to hilarity. He’s collected the big paydays for donning … Continue reading

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Preview, “The Night Eats the World” aims to bring something new to the Zombie film

They still rot right in front of our eyes. But can anybody remember the last time zombies lurched and lumbered after their victims? Because, you know, they’re supposed to be “The WALKING Dead.” No, they started sprinting years ago, fell … Continue reading

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Preview, “The Darkest Minds” lets Mandy Moore get paid, for starters

Yet another YA sci-fi dystopia about kids hunted and imprisoned and feared for who they are. Hey, it’s as topical as today’s headlines, right? Even though it’s based on an Alexandra Bracken novel. These kids have special powers, and no … Continue reading

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Movie Review: “Bernard and Huey” bring Jules Feiffer’s cartoon characters to the Big Screen

Chatty, self-absorbed, streetwise and sex obsessed, even if he wasn’t drawing his quintessential “New York types,” we’d call Jules Feiffer’s characters “cartoons.” They’re intellectuals on the pseudo-intellectual end of the scale, funny in biting, verbose flashes of self-realization. As in … Continue reading

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