6 items from 2011
Chicago – One of the clear observations in re-connecting with the 1964 Oscar-winning Best Picture “My Fair Lady,” is that essentially it’s a timeless musical. It lives in a universe of George Bernard Shaw, adapted from his original play “Pygmalion,” and comes to life through the music and lyrics of Frederick Loewe and Alan Jay Lerner.
Blu-ray Rating: 4.5/5.0
Audrey Hepburn stars as Eliza Doolittle, a controversial choice at the time, since Eliza was brought to the stage by the legendary Julie Andrews, but she creates a captivating, sprightly character that handles all the complex emotions of the character’s transition. Rex Harrison revives from the stage the role he is best known for, that of Professor Henry Higgins. Hepburn and Harrison have fine chemistry, and carry the glorious rendering of the film by iconic director George Cukor with heart and bearing.
Eliza is a street urchin, barely making ends meet as »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
Sky has learned from the Teletubbies, which appeals to toddlers mainly because of the noise, the colour and the constant repetition
It is a big responsibility, this column, knowing one is just a sarcastic jibe, a harsh judgment, away from ruining careers. In the spring of 2010, for instance, when Sky launched its sports/comedy panel show A League Of Their Own, and I suggested it was not funny, and that its host, James Corden, was way too pleased with himself, I worried I might be responsible for snuffing the show out at birth, putting dozens of people out of work.
I cannot find the original piece, but I bet I even put "comedy" in quotes as my particularly hilarious satirical boot to the solar plexus. I visualised the commissioning people at Sky reading the piece, being forced to look back at the show, and exclaiming: "By jove!" (To be honest, »
- Martin Kelner
This week, Syfy’s Being Human: The Complete First Season takes center stage in New DVD & Blu-ray releases. There are also several hits for nostalgic fans looking to make the upgrade from DVD to Blu-ray. Classics like My Fair Lady, West Side Story and Looney Tunes all get a Blu-ray release. Gaming and Anime fans will want to check out Assassins Creed: Lineage and Bleach the Movie: Fade to Black respectively. What blu-rays and dvds are you watching this week? Being Human: The Complete First Season [Blu-ray] Starring Sam Huntington, Sam Witwer West Side Story: 50th Anniversary Edition [Blu-ray] Starring Natalie Wood, George Chakiris, Richard Beymer, Russ Tamblyn, Rita Moreno My Fair Lady [Blu-ray] Starring Audrey Hepburn, Rex Harrison, Stanley Holloway, Wilfrid Hyde-White, Gladys Cooper Evil Dead 2 [Blu-ray] Starring Bruce Campbell, Dan Hicks, Ted Raimi Larry Crowne [Blu-ray] Starring Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts, Sarah Mahoney, Roxana Ortega, Randall...
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- Bags H.
Canny film producer known for his horror and sci-fi classics
The producer Richard Gordon, who has died aged 85, was involved with several offbeat classics of horror and science-fiction cinema. These included Arthur Crabtree's Fiend Without a Face (1958), which climaxes with a still-astonishing siege of a power station by disembodied, tentacled, malicious human brains, and Antony Balch's Horror Hospital (1973), a lively and perverse mad-scientist satire featuring Michael Gough and Robin Askwith.
It may be that Gordon and his brother, Alex, so closely associated that many reference sources mistakenly say they were twins, were the first people to take the now-common route from movie-crazed kid to industry professional, later the path of film-makers as different as Jean-Luc Godard and Steven Spielberg. As schoolboys, the Gordons founded a film society, then wrote for fan magazines and performed menial roles on low-budget productions, always motivated by a boundless enthusiasm for the films »
- Kim Newman
Decades of rainy-Sunday screenings have blinded us to the true nature of postwar British cinema – freedom, naughtiness and a very black humour indeed
It begins with a parrot and a gaucho band. We're in South America – or a tiny patch of it, conjured some 60 years ago on a sound stage in London. The customers wear fur wraps and hair cream. The Atlantic stands, suspiciously immobile, beyond the window. And here is Alec Guinness, a British robber in rich retirement, sitting at a table, grinning a complacent grin and declaring his attachment to the Latin high life in that thin, high, gurgling voice. He is a prototypical Ronnie Biggs – and he's prepared to put his money where his mouth is.
When a conspicuously privileged middle-aged woman stops to talk, Guinness presses a roll of banknotes into her outstretched hands – a donation for the "victims of the revolution". A waiter receives a similarly thick wad of beneficence. »
- Matthew Sweet
While it skews a bit more toward mystery/thriller than pure horror, this week's installment of Motion Picture Purgatory, Fragment of Fear, deals with themes of paranoia and alternate reality so well, we figured why not share it with our readers, especially those who may never have heard of this sweet slice of 1970s cinema before.
Directed by Richard C. Sarafian (Vanishing Point) and starring David Hemmings (Blow-Up, Gladiator), Gayle Hunnicutt (The Spiral Staircase, The Legend of Hell House), and Wilfrid Hyde-White (Chamber of Horrors, The Cat and the Canary), Fragment of Fear tells the tale of a young author who is plunged into a nightmare as he tries to solve his aunt's murder. When threats of violence, mysterious notes, and deadly phone calls shatter his life, the police and his girlfriend doubt the story due to his past as a drug addict - even though his life is in danger. »
- The Woman In Black
6 items from 2011
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