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2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2005 | 2004 | 2000

1-20 of 22 items from 2017   « Prev | Next »


Brother Can You Spare a Dime

19 June 2017 3:31 PM, PDT | Trailers from Hell | See recent Trailers from Hell news »

It’s 1930s America as seen in the movies, through music, and the evasions of newsreels. Franklin Delano Roosevelt preaches prosperity while James Cagney slugs out the decade as a smart-tongued everyman — in a dozen different roles. Director Philippe Mora investigates what was then a new kind of revisionist info-tainment formula: applying old film footage to new purposes.

Brother Can You Spare a Dime

DVD

The Sprocket Vault

1975 / B&W / 1:33 flat full frame / 106 min. / Street Date ?, 2017 / available through The Sprocket Vault / 14.99 (also available in Blu-ray)

Film Editor: Jeremy Thomas

Research by Michael Barlow, Jennifer E. Ryan, Susan Winslow

Produced by Sanford Lieberson, David Puttnam

Directed by Philippe Mora

 

Years before he was briefly sidetracked into sequels for The Howling, Philippe Mora was an accomplished artist and documentary filmmaker. Backed by producers Sanford Lieberson and David Puttnam, his 1974 documentary Swastika pulled a controversial switch on the usual historical fare about »

- Glenn Erickson

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‘Twin Peaks’ Mvp Wally Brando: 5 Reasons Michael Cera’s Brilliant Cameo Is Just What the Show Needed

30 May 2017 11:58 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

[Editor’s Note: The following contains spoilers from the first four episodes of “Twin Peaks.]

Of all the confusing, confounding things on the return of “Twin Peaks,” we have no mixed feelings about one thing: Wally Brando.

The ingeniously named character shows up in the fourth episode of the season as a cameo by Michael Cera. Wally Brando (Brennan?) is the adult son of Twin Peaks Sheriff’s Department receptionist Lucy (Kimmy Robertson) and deputy Andy (Harry Goaz), and was born on Marlon Brando’s birthday, April 3. While we had known Lucy was pregnant in the original series, Wally wasn’t born until after Agent Cooper (Kyle MacLachlan) went missing.

Read More: ’Twin Peaks’ Guide to Returning Characters and What Clues They Offer — Parts 3 & 4 (An Ongoing List)

The 25 years that have passed have been kind to Wally Brando, who has taken to the open road on his motorcycle and stops by Twin Peaks to bring important messages to his folks and the town’s acting sheriff. »

- Hanh Nguyen

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‘Twin Peaks’ Mvp Wally Brando: 5 Reasons Michael Cera’s Brilliant Cameo Is Just What the Show Needed

30 May 2017 11:58 AM, PDT | Indiewire Television | See recent Indiewire Television news »

[Editor’s Note: The following contains spoilers from the first four episodes of “Twin Peaks.]

Of all the confusing, confounding things on the return of “Twin Peaks,” we have no mixed feelings about one thing: Wally Brando.

The ingeniously named character shows up in the fourth episode of the season as a cameo by Michael Cera. Wally Brando (Brennan?) is the adult son of Twin Peaks Sheriff’s Department receptionist Lucy (Kimmy Robertson) and deputy Andy (Harry Goaz), and was born on Marlon Brando’s birthday, April 3. While we had known Lucy was pregnant in the original series, Wally wasn’t born until after Agent Cooper (Kyle MacLachlan) went missing.

Read More: ’Twin Peaks’ Guide to Returning Characters and What Clues They Offer — Parts 3 & 4 (An Ongoing List)

The 25 years that have passed have been kind to Wally Brando, who has taken to the open road on his motorcycle and stops by Twin Peaks to bring important messages to his folks and the town’s acting sheriff. »

- Hanh Nguyen

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The National Review’s Memorial Day List of ‘Movies Liberals Will Hate’ Proves They Don’t Understand Politics or Filmmaking

29 May 2017 9:07 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

To read The National Review’s “Politically Incorrect Guide Memorial Day Movies” is one of those moments where you seriously wonder if conservatism in the Trump Era isn’t just one big episode of “Punk’d.” Written by Arthur Herman, a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute, the list was an attempt to highlight war movies for conservatives to watch on Memorial Day – many of which are fantastic – but are bizarrely packaged and advertised as movies that will piss off liberals.

Read More: ‘Dunkirk’ Trailer: Christopher Nolan Says It’s ‘Not a War Film,’ But It Still Looks Unbearably Intense

“These movies portray serving one’s country in uniform as something to be revered and respected, not dismissed,” boasts the Twitter promo for the piece. Its marketing is a straw-man argument, so it’s first important to establish a few matters of fact.

During the Vietnam War, there was liberal »

- Chris O'Falt

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From ‘The Crown’ to ‘Darkest Hour,’ Wealth of Churchill Projects Signals Hunger for Leadership

24 May 2017 9:45 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

On the big and small screens — from Netflix’s hit series “The Crown” to the upcoming Oscar season entry “Darkest Hour” — Winston Churchill is having a moment. The sheer number of current projects focused on the man who proved to be one of the most stalwart leaders in history is particularly noteworthy given the political unrest and upheaval sweeping the globe.

As the U.K. reels from last summer’s Brexit vote, as France regroups in the wake of an intensely polarized presidential runoff, and as President Trump courts controversy with every new pen stroke and tweet, film and television dramas have found inspiration in the individual who stood up to fascism when no one else would. It’s something actor John Lithgow, who stars as Churchill in “The Crown,” sees as a hunger for nobility in our leadership.

“All these projects were underway long before the storm clouds gathered, »

- Kristopher Tapley

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From ‘The Crown’ to ‘Darkest Hour,’ Wealth of Churchill Projects Signals Hunger for Leadership

24 May 2017 9:45 AM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

On the big and small screens — from Netflix’s hit series “The Crown” to the upcoming Oscar season entry “Darkest Hour” — Winston Churchill is having a moment. The sheer number of current projects focused on the man who proved to be one of the most stalwart leaders in history is particularly noteworthy given the political unrest and upheaval sweeping the globe.

As the U.K. reels from last summer’s Brexit vote, as France regroups in the wake of an intensely polarized presidential runoff, and as President Trump courts controversy with every new pen stroke and tweet, film and television dramas have found inspiration in the individual who stood up to fascism when no one else would. It’s something actor John Lithgow, who stars as Churchill in “The Crown,” sees as a hunger for nobility in our leadership.

“All these projects were underway long before the storm clouds gathered,” Lithgow »

- Kristopher Tapley

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Zach McGowan’s casting in Ni’ihau leads to whitewashing criticism

11 May 2017 5:08 AM, PDT | Flickeringmyth | See recent Flickeringmyth news »

Zach McGowan (Black Sails, The 100) has been cast in the lead role in the World War II drama Ni’ihau, which marks the feature directorial debut of Gabriel Robertson.

Deadline reports that the film will tell the true story of Shigenori Nishikaichi, an Imperial Japanese Navy Air Service pilot who crash-landed his Zero on the eponymous Hawaiian island after participating in the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Nishikaichi was saved by an island leader, Ben Kanahele, but when the circumstances became apparent the pilot was apprehended but received assistance from locals, taking hostages and attempting to overcome his captors. Kanahele ultimately killed Nishikaichi and was decorated for his part in stopping the takeover.

The incident would serve as the catalyst for President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s issuing of Executive Order 9066, which resulted in the mass internment of almost 120,000 Japanese American men, women and childen.

McGowan is set to play Ben Kanahele, »

- Gary Collinson

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Whitewashing Continues With Zach McGowan Cast As Hawaiian WWII Hero In ‘Ni’ihau’

10 May 2017 8:32 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Caucasian actor Zach McGowan has been cast as Hawaiian WWII hero Benehakaka “Ben” Kanahele in the upcoming film “Ni’ihau,” in yet another case of white actors playing roles that should go to Asian/Pacific Islanders, otherwise known as “whitewashing.”

Read More: Whitewashing Isn’t the Only Problem for Asian American Actors, Who Must Play Offensive Stereotypes

Based on a true story, the film follows Kanahele and his wife as they rescue Japanese Navy pilot Shigenori Nishikaichi, who crash landed on the Hawaiian island of Ni’ihau after the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941. After terrorizing the locals for a few days in an attempt to find his papers and escape, Nishikaichi was caught and killed by Kanahele. Kanahele was hailed as a hero for preventing a potential takeover of the island, and was awarded a Medal of Merit and a Purple Heart. Shortly after the so-called Ni’ihau incident, »

- Jude Dry

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‘Whitewashing’ Accusations Fly as Zach McGowan Cast as Hawaiian WWII Hero

9 May 2017 5:21 PM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Actor Zach McGowan has been cast as Hawaiian native Benehakaka “Ben” Kanahele in the upcoming WWII film “Ni’ihau,” reigniting the “whitewashing” controversy in Hollywood where Asian/Pacific Islanders are portrayed by white actors.

The film chronicles the true story of the Ni’ihau Incident, in which Kanahele rescued Shigenori Nishikaichi, an Imperial Japanese Navy Air Service pilot who participated in the bombing of Pearl Harbor, after he crashed his plane onto the Hawaii island of Ni’ihau. After Nishikaichi escaped and banded with three local Japanese to terrorize American locals, Kanahele and his wife ultimately killed him. Kanahele, who was shot by Nishikaichi, was later hailed by the U.S. government as a hero for helping prevent a takeover on the island. The incident also prompted President Franklin D. Roosevelt to issue an executive order placing thousands of Japanese-Americans in internment camps, widely regarded as one of the darkest hours in U. »

- Erin Nyren

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For Our Consideration: Masters of horror and a stunning premiere check in at the Overlook Film Festival

2 May 2017 10:00 PM, PDT | avclub.com | See recent The AV Club news »

It’s hard to overstate the natural beauty that surrounds the Timberline Lodge. Located above the snow line atop what everyone refers to as simply “the mountain,” every window—except for the ones completely blocked by snow—casually opens onto a stunning vista, as if to say, “Oh, that? That’s just the white-capped peak out back of the old maintenance shed.” But nature, however beautiful, tends to make indoor kids nervous and a little wheezy. And so pass-holders huddled together in the lobby amid wood carvings and rustic stone work, lanyards around their necks and black T-shirts on their backs, at the inaugural edition of the Overlook Film Festival, which took place this past weekend in Mt. Hood, Oregon.

The Timberline, originally built as a Wpa project, has stood on the southern edge of Mt. Hood since the late 1930s, when it was dedicated by then-President Franklin D. Roosevelt »

- Katie Rife

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George Takei And Idw Unite To Publish Original Graphic Novel

3 April 2017 9:30 AM, PDT | We Got This Covered | See recent We Got This Covered news »

Even if you’re a geek and don’t follow George Takei on Facebook, odds are that you see him on your newsfeed at least once a week because your friends can’t stop sharing links he posts. Or, if you’re like me, you do follow the social media powerhouse and science fiction icon, and are well aware of his sense of humor that never skimps on the puns.

But, like anyone who’s been around for some time, the former Star Trek actor has seen the harsh side of things in life and isn’t afraid to get serious when necessary. As such, he’s willing to share a moment in history from his point of view, lest we’re doomed to repeat something of this nature.

In 2018, expect Idw to publish an original graphic novel detailing the time Takei and his family spent in an internment camp »

- Eric Joseph

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Idw teams with George Takei to tell the true story of Japanese American internment camps

1 April 2017 10:27 AM, PDT | Flickeringmyth | See recent Flickeringmyth news »

Idw Publishing has announced that it is teaming with George Takei, best known for his beloved role as Hikaru Sulu in Star Trek, to produce a graphic novel re-examining the Japanese American internment camps during WWII through his family’s firsthand experience.

“I have spoken publicly on numerous occasions during my life on the unjust internment of Japanese Americans in my ongoing mission of spreading awareness of this disgraceful chapter of American history,” said Takei. “I do this, and will continue to do so, in the hope that my personal experience can serve as a cautionary reminder of our past leaders’ mistakes, and that as a society, we can learn from those transgressions and not repeat them. When the opportunity to tell my story in the form of a graphic novel presented itself, I recognized the value in making it easily accessible for our youth to discover and digest the material, »

- Gary Collinson

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George Takei to Produce Japanese Internment Graphic Novel

31 March 2017 4:54 PM, PDT | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Star Trek icon and social activist George Takei is working on a graphic novel about the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II, publisher Idw announced Friday. Publication is scheduled for 2018.

The story will narrate the internment through Takei's own family’s firsthand experience of being interned. Takei spent about three years, from age 5 to 8, in an internment camp. The internment came about when, following the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, which authorized the internment of Japanese Americans, including those that were American citizens, out of misplaced and exaggerated fears »

- Andy Lewis

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George Takei to Produce Japanese Internment Graphic Novel

31 March 2017 4:54 PM, PDT | The Hollywood Reporter - TV News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - TV News news »

Star Trek icon and social activist George Takei is working on a graphic novel about the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II, publisher Idw announced Friday. Publication is scheduled for 2018.

The story will narrate the internment through Takei's own family’s firsthand experience of being interned. Takei spent about three years, from age 5 to 8, in an internment camp. The internment came about when, following the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, which authorized the internment of Japanese Americans, including those that were American citizens, out of misplaced and exaggerated fears »

- Andy Lewis

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Memo to Distributors: Buy These SXSW 2017 Movies

18 March 2017 7:43 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Most Beautiful Island

A short, stressful, and utterly spellbinding debut that transforms the immigrant experience into the stuff of an early Polanski psychodrama, “Most Beautiful Island” was a worthy winner of the SXSW Grand Jury Prize for best narrative feature, and might prove to be a breakthrough moment for a major new talent: Spanish actress Ana Asensio not only wrote, directed, and produced this fraught metropolitan thriller, she also appears in just about every frame.

It would be criminal to reveal too much about what happens to her character, a Manhattan immigrant who’s struggling to make a life for herself in the big city and in for the longest night of her life, but it’s thrilling to watch the anxiety of neo-realism as it slowly bleeds into something that resembles the suspense of the orgy sequence from “Eyes Wide Shut.” Creating a lucid sense of reality only so »

- Chris O'Falt, David Ehrlich, Eric Kohn, Kate Erbland and Steve Greene

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Guest Post: When a Woman Called the Shots at the Screen Writers Guild

14 March 2017 1:32 PM, PDT | Women and Hollywood | See recent Women and Hollywood news »

Mary C. McCall Jr. with Maisie doll: Dwight Franklin

Guest Post by J.E. Smyth

Current debates in the media about women’s employment, representation, and visibility in Hollywood focus — perhaps predictably — on stars’ pay and the number of active female directors. Yet there’s also a sense that, however unequal the situation is now, things must have been far worse for women working in the film industry sixty, seventy, or eighty years ago under the studio system — and that women should be grateful for some small improvements.

How very far from the truth this is.

In 1942, the year Bette Davis and Katharine Hepburn earned higher salaries than President Roosevelt, the Screen Writers Guild elected a new president — Mary C. McCall Jr. She would be elected three times (1942–43, 1943–44, 1951–52), and for two decades was one of the most articulate and powerful advocates for screenwriters and their union. Before McCall came on the scene and helped broker the first contract with the producers, it was well known up and down Hollywood that the average writer made less per week than a secretary.

McCall worked to get the screenwriting profession its first minimum wage, unemployment compensation, minimum flat-price deals, maximum working hours, credit arbitration, and pay raises during WWII.

She specialized in films about women and was proud of it. She was less happy working at Warner Bros. In 1936, on loan out to Columbia, she was on the set every day working with director Dorothy Arzner, star Rosalind Russell, and editor Viola Lawrence on “Craig’s Wife.” It was Arzner who persuaded her to fight the misogynist atmosphere at Warner Bros. and commit to a serious career as a writer.

Two years later, she moved to MGM and crafted the sleeper hit of the year, “Maisie.” Ann Sothern’s never-say-die working woman became a cultural phenomenon and was one of the industry’s most successful franchises. During the war, McCall headed the Hollywood branch of the War Activities Committee, the Committee of Hollywood Guild and Unions, and the Screen Writers Guild.

But, being Hollywood’s top organization woman was only one part of her life. At the height of her career, she had and raised four children with two different husbands. She famously gave birth to twins 24 hours after her last story conference on 1935’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” She was a firm believer in the Equal Rights Amendment, and a lifelong Roosevelt Democrat. Hollywood producers destroyed her career when she stood up against Howard Hughes and Rko pictures when they denied Communist writer Paul Jarrico credit on “The Las Vegas Story” during the blacklist.

You won’t find any of this in academic or popular histories of Hollywood. These days, she’s all but forgotten, while Dalton Trumbo and the other male Hollywood Ten are remembered and even get biopic makeovers.

Things are changing.

On March 16, the Writers Guild Foundation will be honoring McCall’s life and legacy with a 35mm screening of “Craig’s Wife” — which is still not available to the public on DVD — and “Reward Unlimited,” a 10-minute documentary short she wrote about women’s war work which hasn’t been screened since 1944. After the screenings, McCall’s daughters, television writer Mary-David Sheiner and former Los Angeles Times film critic Sheila Benson, will sit down with me to discuss McCall’s career. The reception and event, held at the WGA theatre in Beverly Hills, are free.

When McCall came to Hollywood in the 1930s, women’s membership in the Screen Writers Guild hovered between 20 and 25 percent and was nearer a third during the war. But membership plunged for women in the 1960s down to the teens and shrunk further in the ’80s and ’90s. Since the millennium, numbers have slowly increased. Now, 24.9 percent of women are film guild members, but far fewer women writers are being hired for major productions now than the norm seventy or eighty years ago.

Why should we remember Mary C. McCall Jr.? Because she believed in women’s careers; because she believed in the importance of a union; because negotiation, compromise, and political moderation made her and her profession powerful. She is a role model to be reckoned with. And she proved two other things: that Hollywood’s women could call the shots in their careers and that seventy-five years ago, a woman could be president…

J. E. Smyth is Professor of History at the University of Warwick (UK) and the author of several books on American cinema, including “Edna Ferber’s Hollywood” and the BFI Classics volume on “From Here to Eternity.” Her book on Hollywood’s many high-powered career women — starring Mary McCall — will be published later this year by Oxford University Press.

Guest Post: When a Woman Called the Shots at the Screen Writers Guild was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story. »

- Women and Hollywood

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‘Lucky’ Review: 90-Year-Old Harry Dean Stanton Gives a Performance for the Ages in Wry Comedy Co-Starring David Lynch — SXSW 2017

11 March 2017 2:43 PM, PST | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

A wise and wistful love letter from one remarkable character actor to another, John Carroll Lynch’s “Lucky” returns 90-year-old Harry Dean Stanton to the dusty desert environs he shuffled through in 1984’s “Paris, Texas,” and offers the rawboned legend one of the best roles he’s had since. Beginning as a broad comedy before blossoming into a wry meditation on death and all the things we leave behind (a transition that kicks into gear when one of Stanton’s old friends shows up and steals the show), Lynch’s directorial debut is a wisp of a movie, blowing across the screen like a tumbleweed, but it’s also the rare portrait of mortality that’s both fun and full of life.

Co-written by actors Drago Sumonja and Logan Sparks (who worked as Stanton’s assistant on “Big Love”), “Lucky” introduces us to its curmudgeonly title character with the kind »

- David Ehrlich

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Watch John Oliver Interview Dalai Lama Over Reincarnation Controversy

6 March 2017 7:11 AM, PST | Rollingstone.com | See recent Rolling Stone news »

John Oliver traveled to Dharamsala, India for a hilarious, enlightening conversation with the Dalai Lama on Last Week Tonight. Tibet's political and spiritual leader, whom Oliver dubbed the original "woke bae," discussed Chinese oppression and the controversy over his future reincarnation.

The Dalai Lama has lived in exile from Tibet for over five decades, earning hatred from the Chinese government. Oliver opened their conversation with a frank statement: "The Chinese government absolutely hates you." But the Buddhist leader laughed at being labeled a "demon" and responded with kindness. "Whatever they want to say, »

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Polio Vaccine Movie ‘The Impossible War’ in the Works

7 February 2017 5:13 PM, PST | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Black Bear Pictures is launching development on “The Impossible War,” a movie chronicling efforts by Jonas Salk and Albert Sabin to develop anti-polio vaccines.

Black Bear won the auction for Robert Specland’s script and will team with Pacific View Management & Production to produce and fully finance the movie. Black Bear’s Teddy Schwarzman and Ben Stillman will produce with Pacific View’s Peter Dealbert.

Salk needed seven years to develop the first polio vaccine in 1955, three years after a U.S. epidemic killed more than 3,000 in the worst polio outbreak in the nation’s history. The vaccine was declared safe and effective by test monitors on April 12, 1955 — 10 years to the day after the death of Franklin D. Roosevelt, the most widely recognized polio victim of that era. Sabin developed the oral polio vaccine, which came into use in 1961.

Black Bear produced “The Imitation Game,” “Gold” and “Mudbound,” which sold »

- Dave McNary

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Gabriel Over the White House (revisited)

4 February 2017 12:18 PM, PST | Trailers from Hell | See recent Trailers from Hell news »

Gabriel Over the White House

DVD-r

The Warner Archive Collection

1933 / B&W / 1:37 flat full frame / 86, 102 min. / Street Date October 20, 2009 / available through the Warner Archive Collection / 17.99

Starring: Walter Huston, Karen Morley, Franchot Tone, Arthur Byron, Dickie Moore, C. Henry Gordon, David Landau, Samuel S. Hinds, Jean Parker, Mischa Auer.

Cinematography: Bert Glennon

Film Editor: Basil Wrangell

Original Music: Dr. William Axt

Written by: Carey Wilson, from a book by T. F. Tweed

Produced by: William Randolph Hearst, Walter Wanger

Directed by Gregory La Cava

 

A Review Revisit.

The unique political fantasy Gabriel Over the White House has become painfully topical lately. This is an update of a 2009 review. To my knowledge nothing has changed with the product — I saw a re-promotion of Twilight Time’s 1984 disc and thought, Gabriel is twice as relevant and at least as scary.

Unstable times in America have produced some pretty strange political-religious message pictures. »

- Glenn Erickson

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2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2005 | 2004 | 2000

1-20 of 22 items from 2017   « Prev | Next »


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