16 items from 2014
Famed Hollywood defense attorney Peter Knecht died Friday at 78, after succumbing to a two-year battle with cancer. His wife, Dr. Ava Cadell, a well-known relationship therapist and television personality, was by his side when he died. See photos: Hollywood's Notable Deaths of 2014 The accomplished lawyer's star-studded client roster included David Crosby, Sly Stone, Dennis Hopper, Andy Garcia, Peter Fonda, John Barrymore, Jr., Jason Priestly, Ike Turner, Ryan and Tatum O'Neal, Rob Lowe, Heidi Fleiss, Robert Blake, Charles Bronson and “Iron Man” star Robert Downey, Jr. In addition to representing top-notch Hollywood talent, Knecht was an analyst and consultant on a variety. »
- Travis Reilly
Directed by Jean Epstein
It’s hard to imagine that the house of Usher actually acts as a “house”. There’s very little in terms of warm, domestic quality about it: the halls are long and foreboding, the rooms are empty and grand, and it doesn’t seem accustomed to guests. Rather, its ornate decorations and intense lighting suggest something more of an Arthurian castle, full of fairy-tale supernatural qualities lurking in its grounds. Villagers shy away and whisper to themselves when someone utters the name “Usher”; a lone dog runs away at the property’s perimeter — the house’s haunted aura pervades anything that even dares think about it.
An unnamed visitor rides to this doomed estate of the demented Usher for little explained reason (not uncommon for the actions from »
- Zach Lewis
'Sherlock Holmes' movie found at Cinémathèque Française (image: William Gillette in 'Sherlock Holmes') Sherlock Holmes, a long-thought-lost 1916 feature starring stage performer and playwright William Gillette in the title role, has been discovered in the vaults of the Cinémathèque Française. Directed by the all-but-forgotten Arthur Berthelet for the Chicago-based Essanay production company, the approximately 90-minute movie is supposed to be not only the sole record of William Gillette's celebrated performance as Arthur Conan Doyle's detective, but also the only surviving Gillette film.* In the late 19th century, William Gillette himself wrote the play Sherlock Holmes, which turned out to be a mash-up of various stories and novels featuring the detective, chiefly the short stories "A Scandal in Bohemia" and "The Final Problem." ("May I marry Holmes?" Gillette, while vying for the role, telegraphed Conan Doyle. The latter replied, "You may marry or murder or do What you like with him. »
- Andre Soares
As we bid goodbye to the Summer action blockbusters, we say hello once more to the serious slate of films looking to pick up award gold in the last few months of the year. And what better subject matter than the true story or the biographical or “bio-pic”? Maybe a good mix of the two, and since Hollywood enjoys celebrating itself why not tackle one of its greatest stars? Though not as highly merchandised today at contemporaries Bogart, Monroe, or Hepburn (either one), few stars shone as brightly in that golden age than Errol Flynn, king of the silver screen swashbucklers. Now Flynn was played by the similarly dashing Jude Law ten years ago in the Howard Hughes story, The Aviator. And previously he was parodied wonderfully by Peter O’Toole as Alan Swann in the raucous comic gem My Favorite Year in 1982 and by former Bond Timothy Dalton as »
- Jim Batts
If you regularly watch TCM, you already know that Bill Hader is a total cinephile, and he wants to share his love for movies with the world, particularly the younger set. That's why he's been host of Essentials, Jr. on Turner Classic Movies for the past few years, introducing relatively kid-friendly classics like To Kill a Mockingbird, the original Godzilla, Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton shorts, and Shane, which he programmed this past weekend. Not enough? Well, aside from putting movie lovers in stitches with his classic-film-star impressions -- including those of Vincent Price, John Barrymore, James Mason, Peter O'Toole and many more seen during his run on Saturday Night Live (he's even mimicked fellow TCM host Ben Mankiewicz) -- he now has a whopping...
- Christopher Campbell
Drew Barrymore half-sister Jessica Barrymore found dead near San Diego (photo: Jessica Barrymore) Drew Barrymore’s half-sister Jessica Barrymore was found dead in her car early Tuesday, July 29, 2014, in National City, located between San Diego and Chula Vista in Southern California. Jessica Barrymore (née Brahma [Jessica] Blyth Barrymore) would have turned 48 on Thursday, July 31. According to a witness, Jessica Barrymore, who worked at a Petco store, was found reclined in the driver’s seat, with a drink between her legs. White pills were seen scattered on the passenger seat. Despite online rags reporting either that Drew Barrymore’s half-sister committed suicide or died from a drug overdose, the official cause of death hasn’t been announced. As per the Los Angeles Times, an autopsy will be performed in the next few days. In a statement published in the gossip magazine People, Drew Barrymore, 39, said she had "only met her [sister Jessica] briefly." Their father was John Drew Barrymore, »
- Andre Soares
The half sister of Drew Barrymore, whose body was found in a car early Tuesday, likely died from an accidental overdose, her brother told a New York newspaper. "It looks like it was a drug misadventure. Mixing alcohol and pills. I seriously doubt she took her own life," John Barrymore, 60, told the New York Daily News. (Drew, Jessica and John all share the same father, John Drew Barrymore.) Jessica, who would have turned 48 on Thursday, was discovered unresponsive inside her Toyota Camry early Tuesday. Her car was blocking a driveway in National City, California, just north of San Diego. She »
- Lynette Rice, @lynetterice
Drew Barrymore has spoken out after news broke that her half-sister Jessica Barrymore was found dead near San Diego on Tuesday. In an official statement, the actress said, "Although I only met her briefly, I wish her and her loved ones as much peace as possible and I'm so incredibly sorry for their loss." Jessica was the 47-year-old daughter of John Barrymore and his third wife, Nina Wayne; according to a local news outlet, she was found inside her car by a neighbor, and the cause of death is still unknown. Source: Getty / Gregg Deguire »
We all from time to time enjoy a comfortable stay when vacationing anywhere in the world. So why should movie characters not appreciate a great place to stay as well? Interestingly, big screen hotels and motels almost play an important part as an extra movie character in addition to serving as a backdrop to the proceedings.
In Enjoy Your Stay: The Top 10 Movies About Hotels/Motels let’s look at some special selections where hotels and motels in film are featured and play a primary role in plot and theme. Cinematic room service has never been so accommodating.
The Enjoy Your Stay: The Top 10 Movies About Hotels/Motels selections are (in alphabetical order):
1.) The Best Exotic Manigold Hotel (2011)
Director John Madden’s The Best Exotic Manigold Hotel juggles various topical matters at hand: the aging process, deception in advertising, exotic travel and cultural clashing. Madden assembles a notable cast »
- Frank Ochieng
Joan Lorring, 1945 Best Supporting Actress Oscar nominee, dead at 88: One of the earliest surviving Academy Award nominees in the acting categories, Lorring was best known for holding her own against Bette Davis in ‘The Corn Is Green’ (photo: Joan Lorring in ‘Three Strangers’) Best Supporting Actress Academy Award nominee Joan Lorring, who stole the 1945 film version of The Corn Is Green from none other than Warner Bros. reigning queen Bette Davis, died Friday, May 30, 2014, in the New York City suburb of Sleepy Hollow. So far, online obits haven’t mentioned the cause of death. Lorring, one of the earliest surviving Oscar nominees in the acting categories, was 88. Directed by Irving Rapper, who had also handled one of Bette Davis’ biggest hits, the 1942 sudsy soap opera Now, Voyager, Warners’ The Corn Is Green was a decent if uninspired film version of Emlyn Williams’ semi-autobiographical 1938 hit play about an English schoolteacher, »
- Andre Soares
A rock icon gets a fine (not to mention finely named) tribute in “Super Duper Alice Cooper.” This cinematic bio of shock rock’s founding father ultimately traces a somewhat standard rise/fall/redemption arc, with the major drama provided by the subject’s already well-known battles with drink and drugs. But it’s his and other participants’ lighthearted amiability that sets the tone for a flashback told entirely through archival visuals (and a latter-day oral history). This enjoyable ride, currently playing short runs and one-off dates in several countries including the U.S., U.K and Canada, should — like Cooper himself — appeal to aging-boomer original fans and also those who came to him via later performers he greatly influenced. Home format sales should be brisk in many territories.
First introduced to the flattering roar of the crowd when spoofing the Beatles for a school talent show, Phoenix pastor’s »
- Dennis Harvey
Godzilla 1954, Mickey Rooney, Giant Ants, Fascists, and rarely seen ‘Musty Stuffer’: Eclectic Packard Theater movies in May 2014 (photo: ‘Godzilla’) Godzilla 1954, Mickey Rooney, military fascists, deadly giant ants, racing car drivers, and The Mishaps of Musty Suffer, a super-rare slapstick comedy series from the 1910s, are a few of the highlights at the Library of Congress’ Packard Campus Theater in May 2014. Godzilla 1954 and fellow movie monsters Gareth Edwards’ Godzilla 2014, starring Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, Juliette Binoche, Ken Watanabe, and Bryan Cranston, opens on May 16 in much of the world. On May 8 at the Packard Theater, you’ll get the chance to check out Ishiro Honda’s Godzilla 1954 aka Gojira — in the original, Toho-released, Japanese-language version (i.e., without Raymond Burr). As part of its Godzilla double bill, the Packard Theater will also present Motoyoshi Oda’s Gigantis, the Fire Monster aka Godzilla Raids Again (1955). Besides Godzilla, the Packard Theater will »
- Andre Soares
Directed by John S. Robertson
During the silent era, the reinvention of visual horror allowed filmmakers and producers to experiment in film techniques that would become a mainstay in the genre’s mode of expression. Many of these relied heavily on makeup (Frankenstein, Dracula) or early pioneering special effects (The Haunted Castle, The Phantom Carriage), but some relied on more human sensibilities. Mere movement and facial expressions dominate the horrific tone in F. W. Murnau’s Nosferatu; Max Schreck’s grotesque, almost Korinian features have remained a cornerstone of vampiric imagery for nearly a century. In the same vein, John Barrymore managed a horror portrait in Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde that has left John S. Robertson’s vision of the Robert Louis Stevenson story a target for restoration and preservation against countless other Jekyll remakes. »
- Zach Lewis
[Editor's note: The last time I published a list of this sort Christian Bale was way up top and then The Fighter happened. Time for a new look at the Oscar Nomination-less. While I'm in Sundance, abstew steps in with his list. My list (and I'm sure yours) might not be exactly the same but... discuss! - Nathaniel]
This past Thursday, when the Oscar nominations were announced, only eight actors were hearing their names called for the first time (the Best Actress category was all previous nominees and 80% winners). Some were for film debuts (Lupita Nyong'o and Barkhad Abdi), but for the other 6 names (Ejiofor, McConaughey, Fassbender, Leto, Hawkins, and Squibb) it was their first recognition from the Academy after years of hard work and dedication to their craft. But not every great actor ever gets to hear their name called Oscar nomination morning. Despite powerful performances and decades of service to the film industry, sometimes a nomination (let alone a win) evades the greats. For some, the oversite will never be remedied (Marilyn Monore, Edward G. Robinson, Myrna Loy, Peter Lorre, Jean Harlow, and John Barrymore are just some of Hollywood's finest that went without the prefix Academy Award Nominee), but for many great actors still working today there is still time. »
Washington, January 7: Drew Barrymore has revealed that she still can't repair the "complicated" relationship she has with her mother.
The 38-year-old daughter of John Barrymore said that she can't mend her relationship with her mother, Jaid Barrymore, even after she has become a mother herself, as she cannot forgive her for her dysfunctional childhood, Contactmusic reported.
The 'Charlie's Angels' star added that she has always felt guilt, empathy and utter sensitivity towards her mother, but it hasn't enabled her to lessen the distance.
Drew, who entered rehab for drug and alcohol abuse at 14 and was emancipated. »
- Diksha Singh
Drew Barrymore didn't just find love with Will Kopelman. She found the happy extended family she'd been craving - and missing - her whole life. "I didn't think I would ever get to experience that," the actress, 38, tells Marie Claire's February issue, on newsstands Jan. 14, of marrying into the Kopelman family. "This is so safe and positive and healthy because they have their values intact," she says. "It was huge for me. And that's what I want for my family." Drew's troubles with her own famous family are well documented. Her father, the actor John Barrymore, who died in 2004, was largely absent from her life. »
- Tim Nudd
16 items from 2014
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