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1-20 of 263 items from 2011   « Prev | Next »


Watching old films in the post-Christmas lull is bliss from an earlier epoch | Ian Jack

30 December 2011 4:08 PM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

As a teenager I'd scoff at the unreality of the Hollywood musical, but now their numbers seem utterly delightful

We are now nearing the end of a run of days that, by my reckoning, are always the most enjoyable London can offer. They start around 22 December, when taxis, tubes and restaurants are at last empty of Christmas drunks, and end on 3 or 4 January, when work resumes. Every year during this interval, an older and easier kind of London asserts itself; also, an emptier one. The people for whom the city is mainly a work station go home to Lancashire and France. Commuters, if they bother to come in, return soberly with last-minute parcels on the teatime trains. Tourists are fewer, and easily avoided once you leave the axis that stretches from Harrods to St Paul's. On the buses, you notice more people like yourself: middle-aged, or past it, and often »

- Ian Jack

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Who Just Won The X Factor?!

22 December 2011 7:06 PM, PST | E! Online | See recent E! Online news »

It was a $5 million night for one lucky singer—and we're not talking Justin Bieber's appearance fee! The first season of The X Factor on these shores came to a close Thursday with the usual two-hour, star-studded extravaganza, made a little bit cozier and au courant than usual by all the Christmas music. As you might expect, Melanie Amaro channeled Mariah Carey on "All I Want for Christmas Is You," Josh Krajcik took everyone to church with "Please Come Home for Christmas" and—unexpectedly—Chris Rene left the hip-hop behind and went full crooner on "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas." Judy Garland would have been proud, sure, but the aspiring star »

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A Christmas movie story: from merriest to muckiest | Sarah Hughes

21 December 2011 9:51 AM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

You already know to avoid CGI Tom Hanks when selecting a Christmas movie, but there are many more holiday bombs to be wary of. Here's a round-up of the best and worst

Baby, it's cold outside. So what better way to warm your toes (and your heart) than by curling up with a Christmas movie? But choose wisely, dear reader. Christmas movies can be a minefield of shmaltz. Allow us to present you with our not-quite-definitive list of the best and worst of the genre.

The best ...

It's A Wonderful Life, 1946

It may be an obvious choice and we may nod in half-hearted agreement with the New York Times' original description of the movie as "sentimental" and "facile" but despite that, Capra's ending still makes me weep.

Best moment: "That's a lie Harry Bailey went to war…' A despairing Jimmy Stewart realizes just what he's lost

See also: Miracle »

- Sarah Hughes

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From the archive, 18 December 1938: Please bring vitamins for Shirley Temple

18 December 2011 6:04 AM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Originally published in the Observer on 18 December 1938

I am writing this letter now, so that the readers of the Observer can light their fires with it on Monday morning, and you will have six days after it has gone up the chimney to study my wants and decide what you are going to do about them. I know you will be very busy this Christmas, but in case you have time to think about the cinema, here are one or two suggestions for useful gifts.

Give back a film industry to England, just a little one. We have been very stupid, shortsighted and wasteful here, but most of us are sorry now. There are thousands of people out of work in the studios this Christmas, many of them with little prospect of getting back again. Be kind to them, please.

Whisper in the ear of politicians and City men, and »

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Meet Me in St Louis – review

17 December 2011 4:05 PM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

This week we have a welcome rerelease of Meet Me in St Louis, which opened in America 67 years ago this month. It was the first truly great movie from the Freed unit, the MGM department specialising in musicals and headed since 1940 by Arthur Freed, who wrote some of the best songs of the 1920s and 30s and produced several of the finest films of the 20th century.

Freed acquired Sally Benson's series of New Yorker stories about the delightful middle-class Smith family proudly living in 1903 St Louis and looking forward to the following year's World's Fair but not to a proposed move to New York. He assembled the writers, composers, designers and cast, including the virtually unknown Vincente Minnelli, and told studio boss Louis B Mayer: "I want to make this into the most delightful piece of Americana ever." He achieved his aim with a movie that defines perfection, »

- Philip French

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This week's new films

16 December 2011 4:06 PM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Dreams Of A Life (12A)

(Carol Morley, 2011, UK) Zawe Ashton, Neelam Bakshi, Jonathan Harden. 95 mins

This ingenious documentary unravels a bizarre mystery that cuts to our deepest emotional fears, but it also transcends its own genre. The mystery is Joyce Vincent – who tragically died alone in her London flat, aged 38, and whose body wasn't found until three years later. Who Joyce was and how this came to pass is gradually (partially) pieced together, as Morley tracks down former associates and stages reconstructions of her life (with Ashton, unrecognisable from her Fresh Meat incarnation). What starts as a horrific news item becomes the moving story of a real person, albeit an enigmatic one. And in the process, the film itself shifts from sobering documentary to dignifying biopic, giving this strange, sad story a subtle avant garde flourish.

Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows (12A)

(Guy Ritchie, 2011, Us) Robert Downey Jr, Jude Law, »

- Steve Rose

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Glasgow dances with the stars

16 December 2011 10:00 AM, PST | eyeforfilm.co.uk | See recent eyeforfilm.co.uk news »

Gene Kelly retrospective to feature at 2012 festival. Youth Festival details also announced.

"Gene Kelly led a one-man revolution in Hollywood that changed the screen musical forever," says Glasgow Film Festival director Allan Hunter, explaining why the fleet-fotted star of Singin' In The Rain will be the subject of a special retrospective at next February's event. Stars like Judy Garland, Cyd Charisse and Frank Sinatra will also feature in what is set to be a treat for dance fans. If you want to give it a go yourself, there'll even be a special Gene Kelly ceilidh!

The »

- Jennie Kermode

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Vincente Minnelli's "Meet Me in St. Louis"

16 December 2011 6:46 AM, PST | MUBI | See recent MUBI news »

That stunner of a poster up there (or maybe it's a trade ad?) comes from Greenbriar Picture Shows, a blog dedicated primarily (but not exclusively) to Hollywood's golden age. Once or twice a week, John McElwee presents a batch of gorgeous reproductions of movie memorabilia bordered by essays on the production back stories and — this is what makes his angle unique — tales of the distribution and the immediate reception (critically as well as at the box office) of films from the mid-20th century: hits that'd soon be forgotten, flops that'd somehow make their way into the canon, and the perennials, such as Vincente Minnelli's Meet Me in St. Louis (1944). He'll be giving this one an extra-thorough treatment; yesterday's entry is just the first part of a series. It's also a tad more personal than others: "I hesitate calling Meet Me in St. Louis my favorite picture of all time, »

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Meet Me in St Louis – review

15 December 2011 4:06 PM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

This much-loved 1944 musical is still an unmissable big-screen experience, writes Peter Bradshaw

An earnest young woman in smalltown America, sweet on the boy next door, finds her kid sister has been bashed – apparently by this boy – and the victim still has a handful of his hair in her clenched fist. Later, this is all straightened out, but only when the family learns that little sis had herself planned a prank: to leave a dressed-up dummy on the tram lines, causing possible derailment and death! It sounds like a Michael Haneke nightmare, but it's Vincente Minnelli's much-loved 1944 classic, Meet Me in St Louis, now rereleased nationally as part of the BFI Southbank retrospective Gotta Sing! Gotta Dance! The MGM Musical. Perhaps, 67 years on, you could see the entire film as a brilliant showcase for its sensationally melancholy song: Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, which Judy Garland sings in the presence of her sobbing sister, »

- Peter Bradshaw

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2012 Golden Globe Nominations Announced!

15 December 2011 6:30 AM, PST | Extra | See recent Extra news »

The 2012 Golden Globe nominees were announced Thursday morning in Hollywood.

As expected, "The Artist" and "The Descendants" led the way with five nods each, but there were plenty of surprises too.

George Clooney is going to have a big night, as his "The Ides of March" scored four nominations, including Best Director.

Breakout star Ryan Gosling scored two nods for his superb acting -- one for "Crazy, Stupid, Love" as well as "The Ides of March. »

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More excellent (if sometimes depressing) Christmas music

14 December 2011 11:03 PM, PST | CultureMagazine.ca | See recent CultureMagazine news »

April told us about a couple of her favourite songs, Emily shared a hilarious roast of one of the world's worst Christmas songs, and now I'll throw a couple more of my favourites this year into the mix. Check out the following offerings from Coldplay,  Roger Whittaker, Judy Garland, and She & Him.

 

In 2010, Coldplay released an original Christmas song, "Christmas Lights", and it is quite enjoyable. When you hear the same 10 songs again and again at this time of »

- Lauren Cheal

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More excellent (if sometimes depressing) Christmas music

14 December 2011 11:03 PM, PST | CultureMagazine.ca | See recent CultureMagazine news »

April told us about a couple of her favourite songs, Emily shared a hilarious roast of one of the world's worst Christmas songs, and now I'll throw a couple more of my favourites this year into the mix. Check out the following offerings from Coldplay,  Roger Whittaker, Judy Garland, and She & Him.

 

In 2010, Coldplay released an original Christmas song, "Christmas Lights", and it is quite enjoyable. When you hear the same 10 songs again and again at this time of »

- Lauren Cheal

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AfterElton Briefs: Dot Marie Jones Vs. Andy Cohen, the Importance of "Happy Endings," and Rick Santorum Embarrasses Himself Again.

14 December 2011 2:56 PM, PST | The Backlot | See recent The Backlot news »

I liked it better when The Person of The Year was me. Yes, I was surprised, too, but it had my face on it!Happy 65th Birthday to Patty Duke! Below you can see Patty talk about briefly working with Judy Garland on the set of Valley Of The Dolls, and her feelings toward the movie's director, "The meanest son-of-a-bitch I ever met in my life."

In ratings news, Glee finally held steady week-to-week.The SAG Award nominations were announced this morning, with the usual suspects (Modern Family, 30 Rock) scoring big, as well as a few surprises.Speaking of, this year's SAG Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented by Dick Van Dyke to Mary Tyler Moore. When they do her retrospective, I'm going to be pissed if they don't include my favorite Mary moment, her infamous 1976 biblical TV special Mary's Incredible Dream, which was aired once, and never again. It features Ben Vereen as Lucifer, »

- snicks

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Glee 3.09 "Extraordinary Merry Christmas" Recap - A Chewbacca Carol

14 December 2011 2:08 PM, PST | TVovermind.com | See recent TVovermind.com news »

Glee 3.09 "Extraordinary Merry Christmas" Recap - A Chewbacca Carol

Glee celebrates its holiday mid-season finale with “Extraordinary Merry Christmas" which sees the New Directions electing to put on a cable-access holiday Christmas special, referencing the Star Wars Holiday Special and Judy Garland, rather than join Sue at a homeless shelter.

Don’t have the time to spare?  Then here's what you missed on Glee’s “Extraordinary Merry Christmas!”

The New Directions decorate their rehearsal space’s Christmas tree, Glee-fully bopping along to the tune of Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas is You,” as Rachel asserts they’ll all have the best Christmas ever.  Out in the hall, she vainly hands Finn her outline of Christmas prsents, mostly consisting of items to beautify her in time for Nyada auditions, while Finn believes in the more traditional gift of being with one another.

In Sue’s office, the Cheerios’ coach invites Artie, »

- Kevin Fitzpatrick

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"Glee" Episode 309 Recap: No Box

14 December 2011 4:11 AM, PST | The Backlot | See recent The Backlot news »

Time for Glee's 2011 Christmas episode. I hated a few things about it – gratuitous religion-shoving-down-throats; lauding the anti-gay, anti-trans Salvation Army; too much Rory – but that awesome 50s holiday special they did? Kurt and Blaine as "best friends and holiday roommates" in Gstaad? Heather Morris' world-class thighs and her rendition of "Christmas Wrapping"? The show-stopping voice of Amber Riley in "All I Want For Christmas Is You"?

That's a whole lotta holiday cheer.

No, other than the three things I didn't like, the only thing wrong with last night's Glee was what wasn't in it: Naya Rivera performing "Santa Baby," and the scene they showed us in the official promo shots where Blaine gives Kurt a gift. Both cut.

The Klaine and Brittana fandoms wept. I mean, Tumblr is still damp.

The episode opened with Mercedes singing "All I Want for Christmas Is You" as the Glee Club decorated the choir room, »

- christiekeith

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‘Glee,’ Season 3, Episode 9, ‘Extraordinary Merry Christmas’: TV Recap

13 December 2011 6:41 PM, PST | Speakeasy/Wall Street Journal | See recent Speakeasy/Wall Street Journal news »

Fox Scene from “Glee.”

In tonight’s “Extraordinary Merry Christmas,” “Glee” veered away from the technicolor extravaganza of its first Christmas special last year, to a black-and-white pastiche of plastic smiles, canned laughter and humdrum holiday songs. They threw in a dash of “Star Wars” paraphernalia and a bit of Judy Garland magic, but still it came out a jumbled mess.

This is an awkward proposition, to say the least. It’s the directorial debut of Matt Morrison, who plays show-choir master Will Schuester. »

- Raymund Flandez

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Glee Review: Ho, No, No

13 December 2011 6:32 PM, PST | TVfanatic | See recent TVfanatic news »

I don't mean to be a Scrooge, but wow. That was bad. Like, really, really bad. Like so bad that I wonder if Ryan Murphy and company watched last week's Community and then figured they'd create an episode that mocked their own show even more.

Because, seriously people, "Extraordinary Merry Christmas" was a stocking stuffed with everything that can sometimes be wrong with this show.

Here, Rachel, I know you're Jewish and that's been referenced numerous times in the past, but it's Christmas! We're allowed to ignore continuity as long as we sing songs and end on a Hallmark-inspired message!

There was no attempt at a plot whatsoever. There was no building on any storylines. This could have basically been plopped down anywhere in any season. One song started the show, another picked up the moment we returned from a commercial break, a bunch more were crammed into a black-and-white »

- matt@mediavine.com (Matt Richenthal)

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Glee Recap: Merry, With Children [Updated]

13 December 2011 6:24 PM, PST | TVLine.com | See recent TVLine.com news »

Glee got decked out this week in sleigh bells, garland, and a healthy dose of unabashed sentimentality for a Christmas-themed episode that should fulfill two very disparate purposes: Reminding folks of the joys of giving back to the less fortunate, and of course, moving a massive amount of copies of Glee: The Music, The Christmas Album Volume 2.

“Extraordinary Merry Christmas” was less of a fully formed episode and more a collection of holiday carols that paid homage to A Charlie Brown Christmas, The Star Wars Holiday Special, and The Judy Garland Christmas Show. (Checkout this YouTube clip from the »

- Michael Slezak

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'Glee' scoop: Matthew Morrison talks tonight's Christmas episode, his directing debut, and Chewbacca

13 December 2011 11:23 AM, PST | EW - Inside TV | See recent EW.com - Inside TV news »

Glee star Matthew Morrison makes his directing debut tonight with the show’s annual Christmas episode. The actor, who plays teacher Will Schuester, didn’t originally plan on helming the holiday-themed episode, but couldn’t pass up the chance when producers offered it to him. “They were actually going to give me the one before that,” says Morrison. “But then they were like, ‘No we wanna give you the big Christmas one.’ I was like, ‘Thank you.’ But then I was like, ‘Oh great. No pressure.’” EW talked to Morrison about tonight’s Glee and how exactly Chewbacca got involved. »

- Tim Stack

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'Glee' Recap: An Absurd, Judy Garland Christmas Special

13 December 2011 10:36 AM, PST | buddytv.com | See recent BuddyTV news »

Christmas has been replaced by Opposite Day on Glee this year. In one of the most absurdly entertaining episodes of the year, Sue becomes the moral voice of reason while the kids of New Directions become selfish Grinches. Throw in random references to Chewbacca, Judy Garland and a reading from the Bible and you have the trippiest Christmas special ever. »

- editor@buddytv.com

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