7 items from 2011
"Harry Morgan, the prolific character actor best known for playing the acerbic but kindly Colonel Potter in the long-running television series M*A*S*H, died on Wednesday morning at his home in Los Angeles," reports Michael Pollak in the New York Times. "In more than 100 movies, Mr Morgan played Western bad guys, characters with names like Rocky and Shorty, loyal sidekicks, judges, sheriffs, soldiers, thugs and police chiefs…. In The Ox-Bow Incident (1943), which starred Henry Fonda, he was praised for his portrayal of a drifter caught up in a lynching in a Western town…. He went on to appear in All My Sons (1948), based on the Arthur Miller play, with Edward G Robinson and Burt Lancaster; The Big Clock (1948), in which he played a silent, menacing bodyguard to Charles Laughton; Yellow Sky (1949), with Gregory Peck and Anne Baxter; and the critically praised western High Noon (1952), with Gary Cooper. Among »
Joe’s a world traveler, some people say.
Having returned last month from two weeks in Hawaii (where he directed the Halloween episode of Hawaii Five-0, in case you missed it), Our Fearless Leader set-forth earlier this month to trek the globe, hitting Wisconsin to curate screenings at the Uow Madison Cinematheque flying to Argentina for the Mar del Plata film festival and then jetting over to France for the Amiens Film Festival. In his wake, he’s left press and bloggings and all manner of reflections from the people he’s run into here and there.
All of this to say that a) I don’t know why that opening read like a letter home from a war and b) Joe’s been very busy and we’ve been trying (poorly*) to keep tabs from afar. Play along, won’t you, and let’s see what’s popped up. »
Time for drinks with one of our favorite films!
One of the most exciting nail-biters in the film noir genre, “The Big Clock” will have you wound up tighter than a cheap analog watch. No small digital numbers here. Crimeways Magazine likes it larger than life.
Of all the things to like about this movie, that huge timepiece in the art deco office buiding may be my favorite. It’s like the old scoreboards of classic baseball parks. Inside, though, instead of a guy flipping over the runs and outs, it houses a guy about to flip because his time may be running out.
In Kenneth Fearing’s book, the murder weapon is a brandy decanter, which »
Hollywood producer who helped break the male stranglehold
Laura Ziskin, who has died aged 61 from breast cancer, was an influential and widely liked Hollywood producer who presided over the breakthrough films of stars including Nicole Kidman, Julia Roberts and Kevin Costner. She demonstrated an aptitude for shaping commercial hits, such as the Spider-Man movies, alongside riskier projects.
As a producer with a contract at Sony and the former president of Fox 2000 (a specialist division of 20th Century-Fox), she was one of the first generation of women, along with Sherry Lansing and Amy Pascal, to occupy positions of power in a male-dominated industry. "There are a good dozen women producers consistently working in features, making movies," she said in 1998. "Not one-offs, not one movie every 10 years, but consistently making movies. This is quite a change, a revolution."
Ziskin was born in the San Fernando Valley, California, and graduated in 1973 from the »
- Ryan Gilbey
Rockstar's L.A. Noire is full of collectible goodies that make an already great game even better. Perhaps the most prominent hidden collectible are 50 Gold Film Reels canisters scattered amongst the game's four main areas.
Some of the L.A. Noire Gold Film Reels will be stumbled upon naturally through the course of playing the game. Many others are tucked away in nooks and crannies. Finding these hidden Gold Film Reels may require a lot of extra exploring or a little help to locate.
The following guide will walk you through how to find all 50 Gold Film Reels in L.A. Noire in the shortest amount of time possible. Right after the guide are four YouTube videos that will show you exactly what the guide is talking about. Collect all 50 Gold Film Reels and you'll earn an Achievement in the Xbox 360 version and a Trophy in the Playstation 3 version.
At 1:15pm last Friday I abandoned a prime piece of New York real estate. Christian Marclay’s 24-hour installation The Clock had been running for the previous four weeks at the Paula Cooper Gallery in Chelsea and on Thursday art critic Jerry Saltz had written in New York Magazine’s Vulture about “The Best Movie You Can See in New York (for Two More Days)”, calling it “My nominee for Best Picture of the year — maybe the best picture ever.” After that all bets were off. I arrived at 9:30am on Friday morning for the 10am opening and by the time I’d queued for 40 minutes there were no seats left inside the theater/gallery (the seating was a grid of black Ikea couches) and I had to sit up front on the floor. But within an hour I’d snagged a prime position on the front couch »
Paul Giamatti has the haunted look and paranoia of a lifelong supporting actor who knows he's never going to get a big lead role
When I looked up Paul Giamatti, I couldn't believe his age – is he really only 43? He seems so much older, darker and sadder, all entirely appropriate to this era. Then, as I pursued the sketch of his biography, I found this: in 2007, the Brooklyn Academy of Music asked him to programme a series of eight films. He chose Hitchcock's very nasty Frenzy; Dr Strangelove; Altman's Brewster McCloud; The Big Clock, a film noir with Charles Laughton; The Seventh Victim, one of Val Lewton's best low-budget horror films; George Romero's Dawn of the Dead; John Frankenheimer's scary Seconds; and Phil Kaufman's 1978 remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers. In short, a paradise for paranoia.
So it's worth reminding ourselves that the best work »
- David Thomson
7 items from 2011
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