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2 items from 2014


Sir Donald Sinden obituary

12 September 2014 9:24 AM, PDT | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

Formidable actor who embraced equally tragedy and farce, stage and screen

"To hear him in full spate is not unlike being shot between the eyes by the world's largest plum," said the journalist John Preston of Donald Sinden, who has died aged 90. The remark was applicable to the actor's vocal delivery both on stage and off. No review was ever penned without "fruity" appearing somewhere near "voice" in the text. Judi Dench, who played a notable Beatrice to his Benedick in Much Ado About Nothing in 1976, said he had "a Christmas pudding of a voice, soaked in brandy"; while the director Peter Hall, who played a very big part in his career, likened it to a bassoon that could be terribly tragic, terribly moving and extremely funny. Physically, too, Sinden was both imposing and endlessly, sometimes outrageously, inventive. In all, Michael Billington averred, he was a critic's dream, because he »

- Michael Coveney

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Film Review: ‘Rage’

12 July 2014 1:16 PM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

When an ex-mobster’s daughter is found dead, the repressed return with a vengeance that feels more like a whimper in “Rage,” a silly and shopworn Nicolas Cage action vehicle that plays like a poor man’s “Taken,” “Mystic River” and “A History of Violence” rolled into one. Proficiently made but fatally unpersuasive in its portrayal of internecine gang warfare, this thuggish melodrama piles on the foreign accents and paint-by-numbers brutality, all served up with a grim, operatic self-seriousness that gives Cage’s antihero little room to maneuver. Spanish genre helmer Paco Cabezas’ English-language debut will find a few fans on VOD, where it’s rolling out simultaneously with its limited theatrical release.

Commercially and, er, culturally speaking, “Rage” is unlikely to do for Cage what the “Taken” movies have done for Liam Neeson; as scripted by James Agnew and Sean Keller (who previously collaborated on Dario Argento’s ill-fated »

- Justin Chang

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2 items from 2014


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