1-20 of 48 items from 2011 « Prev | Next »
Bing Crosby, Gene Lockhart, Barry Fitzgerald, Going My Way Leo McCarey is Turner Classic Movies' Director of the Evening this Christmas. Considering that McCarey was an ardent Catholic, TCM has made a quite appropriate choice. Unfortunately, McCarey's anti-Red My Son John — despite the fact that the Bible plays a prominent role in that film — hasn't been included on the TCM film roster. Instead, TCM watchers will have the chance to check out Going My Way, Make Way for Tomorrow, Duck Soup, The Milky Way, Love Affair, and Once Upon a Honeymoon. The year Billy Wilder's film noir classic Double Indemnity was nominated for Best Picture — and Alfred Hitchcock's Lifeboat, Vincente Minnelli's Meet Me in St. Louis, and Otto Preminger's Laura weren't — McCarey's sappy, feel-good Going My Way was chosen as the Best Picture of 1944 by enough members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. »
- Andre Soares
Throughout the month of December, TV Editor Kate Kulzick and Film Editor Ricky D will review classic Christmas adaptions, posting a total of 13 each, one a day, until the 25th of December.
The catch: They will swap roles as Rick takes on reviews of television Christmas specials and Kate takes on Christmas movies. Today is day 20.
Remember the Night (1940)
Written by Preston Sturges
Directed by Mitchell Leisen
What’s it about?
Lee Leander (Barbara Stanwyck) gets caught shoplifting and is prosecuted by Ada John Sargeant (Fred MacMurray), but when the case gets postponed ‘til after the holidays, Sargeant gets Leander out on bail to spend Christmas with her family and the two wind up on a road trip to Indiana.
There is something delightful about 1940s romantic/screwball comedies. There’s no setup too preposterous, no scenario too ridiculous. The Ptb (powers that be) involved throw reality out the window at the start, »
- Kate Kulzick
We've been enjoying your responses to our My favourite film series, for which Guardian writers have selected the movies they hold closest to their hearts.
Commence to dancing! For in the sixth week of our My favourite film series you achieved something pretty much unheard of – a Guardian article that provoked absolutely no dissenting opinion whatsoever. Just 156 comments worth of awe and affection for Laurel and Hardy with the odd smattering of praise for Jonathan Glancey's take on their "happily inconsequential" classic Way Out West. Debate be damned! We could get used to this.
"Strung between songs and a creaking plot are gags aplenty and a gloriously wayward score," said Glancey of James W Horne's collaboration with the pair, which sees the boys pop »
Ken Russell died this week, leaving behind a body of work that shocked and surprised, teased and titillated. He was, said Xan Brooks in our early news story a man of "wild drama, gaudy conflagrations and operatic flourishes", a "juggler of high and low culture who invariably courted controversy".
Russell's career path - from his documentary work for the 1960s BBC series Monitor, to the short films he made at home in later years - was hard to map. His most infamous and innovative works - The Devils, Altered States - flashed by in the wake of semi-hits Women in Love (which won him an Oscar in 1971) and Tommy. He was, said friends an "iconoclast" (Venessa Redgrave). "Fearless, eccentric and silly" (Melvyn Bragg). "Capable of »
- Henry Barnes
We're picking out your finest responses to our My favourite film series, for which Guardian writers have selected the movies they go back to time and again.
The fifth week of our My favourite film series opened with an act of defiance. Sarfraz Manzoor had the floor. He spoke of passion and inspiration, of the courage in seizing the moment. He covered romance and skipped realism, asked for your heart, promised adventure. And, one by one, you read his piece on Dead Poets Society, gave your classmates a nudge and laughed him off the lectern.
"Oh Sarfraz! Captain my captain, how could you?," said MyLeftFoot. "It really is the most cliche-ridden load of baloney." "Appropriate time to have »
In our writers' favourite film series, Paul Howlett is moved by the heartbreak in this classy film noir about an insurance salesman
Do you feel betrayed by this review? Then write your own here or brood in the shadows of the comments section below
Who would have thought a movie about an insurance guy could be so bitter, so suspenseful, so heartbreaking? I love Double Indemnity because it's about a couple who are cheap and greedy, but achieve a kind of tragic heroism; because it has one of the great father-son relationships (although they aren't actually father and son); because it's a thoroughly cynical thriller redeemed by just a fading touch of romance. And it also has a trio of superb performances: Fred MacMurray, who tended to play amiable chumps, was here recast as a devious murderer (though still a bit of a chump); Barbara Stanwyck, as the deadliest of »
- Paul Howlett
Throughout November, Sos staffers will be discussing the movies that made them into film fanatics.
(click here for the full list)
Directed by Billy Wilder
1950 – USA
You must remember this. For me the love affair with movies began with Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall and a world of smoke, cynicism and smouldering looks. I discovered a copy of Joe Hyams’ biography, Bogart and Bacall, while I was working at my local library around 1980. Obsessing over Hollywood’s most famous May-December romance soon led me to the black and white movies of the 40s, and many late nights watching Hawks, Huston, Curtiz and Billy Wilder.
I don’t know exactly when I first saw Wilder’s Sunset Blvd., but it was about 30 years ago and I have revisited it regularly. The film was significant because for the first time I felt a »
Velvet Bullets and Steel Kisses: Celebrating the Nikkatsu Centennial was a sidebar at this year's New York Film Festival that Dan Sallitt, writing a couple of weeks ago, found "so exciting that it threatens to overshadow the main slate: a retrospective of the Japanese studio Nikkatsu, whose opportunistic shifts of focus always seemed to open doors for some of Japan's most creative filmmakers. Compare film magazine Kinema Junpo's 1999 and 2009 lists of all-time greatest Japanese films to the Lincoln Center series schedule, and count the overlaps." Last year in the Notebook, Dan reviewed one of the 37 films in the series, Tomu Uchida's Earth (1939).
"The sidebar is peppered with nearly impossible to see rediscoveries," notes Steve Dollar at GreenCine Daily: "early silent films like 1927's A Diary of Chuji's Travels and harshly realistic World War II dramas like Mud and Soldiers. Shot on location in China in 1939, the latter film blends »
There has been much recent discussion about spoilers, but I have yet to see any mention of Films That Spoil Themselves. Lars von Trier's Melancholia begins with the ultimate in spoileresque prologues – the end of the world – before the story backpedals to an earlier date. The foreknowledge changes the way we watch the film – we already know Bruce Willis or Tom Cruise isn't going to step in and save the day – and got me thinking about the reasons some films begin with their very own preview of coming attractions.
- Anne Billson
The CineClub is presenting biweekly screenings at the Crowley Arts Centre here in Montreal every other Sunday, and this week’s screening is one of my favorite films of all time, Double Indemnity.
Below is a brief synopsis; Double Indemnity screens at 7pm; you can find the Crowley at 4325 rue Crowley, near Vendome metro. Admission is $8, or $6 with a student ID.
Double Indemnity – 1944- Billy Wilder. Adapted from a James M. Cain novel by Wilder and Raymond Chandler, Double Indemnity represents the high-water mark of 1940s film noir urban crime dramas in which a greedy, weak man is seduced and trapped by a cold, evil woman amidst the dark shadows and Expressionist lighting of modern cities. Phyllis Dietrichson (Barbara Stanwyck) seduces insurance agent Walter Neff (Fred MacMurray) into murdering her husband to collect his accident policy. The murder goes as planned, but after the couple’s passion cools, each becomes »
What would happen if Philip Marlowe met James Bond over drinks? It's fun to think about, but we'll probably never know. Now, however, we can know what happened when their two creators, the American Raymond Chandler and the British Ian Fleming, met in 1958 and recorded this interview/discussion about their craft. A transcript is available via Pdf, or fans can listen to a recording of the 24-minute interview. Ian Fleming Talks to Raymond Chandler 1958 from 33hirtz on Vimeo. Chandler was about 69, and just a year away from his death. He had already published his greatest works, which had been made into the films The Big Sleep (1946), The Long Goodbye (1973), and Farewell My Lovely (1975); he also worked on the screenplays for Billy Wilder's Double Indemnity...
- Jeffrey M. Anderson
HBO's adaptation of James M. Cain's novel "Mildred Pierce" won two awards -- for star Kate Winslet and best supporting actor Guy Pearce -- at Sunday's (Sept. 18) Emmy Awards and, as it turns out, HBO may soon have more material for a similar project.
A new novel by author Cain, who died in 1977, has been discovered and will be published in fall 2012 by imprint Hard Case Crime.
Cain -- who also penned "The Postman Always Rings Twice" and "Double Indemnity" -- had been rumored to be working on a book at the time of his death. Hard Case editor Charles Ardai says the manuscript for that book, "The Cocktail Waitress," was unearthed by his literary agent in a box full of papers inherited from a colleague.
According to the New York Times, the book chronicles a young widowed cocktail waitress whose husband died under suspicious circumstances before she falls »
We take John Barry’s non-Bond retrospective into the 80s, with some of his epic scores of love, lust and loss…
John Barry’s love affair with cinema is well documented. One could not imagine such a torrent of melodic invention pouring forth with such vibrant intensity if he was not enraptured by the cinematic experience: the darkened periphery of the auditoria; the hushed reverence of another world; the minutiae of human emotion playing out on the big screen. Everything he did, from The Beat to Enigma, represented a direct and synchronous passion for lyrical expression alongside the visual language of film.
The young Prendergast got his love of film from his father, Jack Xavier, who was a cinema projectionist in the silent movie era and would subsequently own a chain of cinemas in the North East. One of Barry’s earliest memories was being carried on his dad’s »
Christmas came early last week. That’s when I finally received my advance copy of Citizen Kane on Blu-ray in the mail. For months, I’ve had its September 13th release date circled in red ink on my calendar. What can I say? Some folks have to be the first person they know with Madden 2012. Some camp out in sleeping bags to be the first to see the latest Harry Potter movie. Me, I’m a mouth-breathing drooler when it comes to Orson Welles’ 1941 classic. And if that doesn’t sound nerdy enough, then there’s this: I couldn’t »
- Chris Nashawaty
We can't get enough of Marilyn Monroe, it seems. The U.S. Postal Service will honor director Billy Wilder, the enduring director of the classics Double Indemnity, The Apartment, Seven Year Itch, and Some Like It Hot (joining John Ford, John Huston and Frank Capra in their Great Film Directors series), by emblazoning his hottest star on a 2012 "Forever" stamp. The iconic Marilyn--the actress died in 1962--keeps feeling the love from this century, from a $4.6 million price tag for her Seven Year Itch dress, jazz singers performing her repertory (see video clips below), and a 26-foot Seward Johnson sculpture in Chicago that now boasts a tattoo, no less. Michelle Williams stars as Monroe during the filming of The Prince and the Showgirl in My »
We can't get enough of Marilyn Monroe, it seems. The U.S. Postal Service has decided to honor director Billy Wilder, the enduring director of the classics Double Indemnity, The Apartment, Seven Year Itch, and Some Like It Hot, by emblazoning his hottest star on a stamp. The iconic Marilyn keeps feeling the love from this century, from a $4.6 million price tag for her Seven Year Itch dress, jazz singers performing her repertory (see video clips below), and a 26-foot Seward Johnson sculpture in Chicago that now boasts a tattoo, no less. Michelle Williams stars as Monroe during the filming of The Prince and the Showgirl in My Week with Marilyn, which will debut at the New York Film Festival this fall. See the new »
Chicago – “Final Destination 5” may have under-performed a bit this past weekend at the box office but that has nothing to do with the legendary Tony Todd. The horror icon perhaps best-known for playing the title character in “Candyman” but also a major part of the movie and TV landscape for decades breezed through Chicago on the day his new sequel opened. The charming star discussed the longevity of the “Fd” movies, what made him an actor, the future of 3D, and much more.
HollywoodChicago.com: When you were doing the first movie did you have any idea that you’d be someday talking about a fifth one?
Tony Todd: No, no.
HollywoodChicago.com: Do you have a good sense for that kind of thing?
Todd: I have a good sense of when something is going to be Good.
HollywoodChicago.com: That doesn’t necessarily mean profitable.
Todd: Unfortunately, »
- email@example.com (Adam Fendelman)
The Skin I Live In star on the 'terrifying responsibility' of working with Spain's great director, Pedro Almodóvar
Ten years ago, the Spanish film-maker Pedro Almodóvar called Elena Anaya and asked to meet. She went to Madrid and immediately the director started to apologise profusely; he had a tiny role in his new project, he explained, but he couldn't imagine anyone else playing it. The young actor told him to stop: "I said to him I would be a vase or a lampshade if he wanted – facing a wall or whatever," she remembers now. The film was Talk to Her and Almodóvar was not exaggerating; Anaya's part is so small that when her father went to the premiere, he didn't even notice she was in it.
A decade on, Almodóvar called again. The intervening years had been good to both of them: Almodóvar had evolved his lurid, exuberant early films »
- Tim Lewis
DVD Playhouse—July 2011
By Allen Gardner
The Music Room (Criterion) Satyajit Ray’s 1958 masterpiece looks at the life of a fallen aristocrat as a metaphor for an India that is not only becoming Westernized, but modernized technologically and culturally beyond recognition. When the beloved music room, where he has hosted lavish concerts in the past, starts falling into disrepair as attendance drops steadily, the man realizes his way of life is vanishing. Stunningly shot in black & white, one of Ray’s finest works. Bonuses: Documentary on Ray from 1984 by Shyam Benegal; Interviews with Ray biographer Andrew Robinson and filmmaker Mira Nair; Excerpt from 1981 roundtable discussion between Ray, critic Michael Ciment, director Claude Sautet. Also available on Blu-ray disc. Full screen. Dolby 1.0 mono.
- The Hollywood Interview.com
I wish I had more to offer with my 100th edition of the "What I Watched, What You Watched" column, but I'm afraid it's only one title for me this week. Hopefully you all will have more to offer...
Double Indemnity (1944) Quick Thoughts: I was inspired to watch this again after watching Woody Allen's Manhattan Murder Mystery last week and was happy to see it on Netflix Instant Play as I've been holding off from buying it, hoping Universal would issue a new edition, perhaps Blu-ray. I first watched it back in December 2008 when I wrote an article headlined "What are Your Personal 'Must Own' Movies?" and I mentioned how it was on "my list of must owns" along with films such as The Battle of Algiers, Sunset Boulevard, Double Indemnity, Roman Holiday, La Strada and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?. Curiously, of those six, Double Indemnity and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? »
- Brad Brevet
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