7 items from 2014
Eddy and Sid after a Master Class at Nyu, 2003. (Photo: Michael Doft)
Sid Caesar’s funeral service was held on Sunday afternoon, February 16 at a private ceremony in Los Angeles. Among the family and friends paying tribute was Sid’s biographer and friend, Cinema Retro’s Eddy Friedfeld, who co-authored Sid’s creative biography, Caesar’s Hours, published by Public Affairs in 2003.
What follows is the eulogy Eddy delivered before Sid's family, friends and colleagues.
Sid said that, like Isaac Newton, he stood on the shoulders of giants, his inspirations- Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Laurel and Hardy and W.C. Fields, who helped him develop his career and craft. Today, Sid, we stand on your shoulders- and celebrate your life, your art, your warmth, character, and friendship. You did things no one else could do and you inspired many others, including people in this room, to take the same artistic risks. »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Cinema Retro)
Should you decide to binge on every published review of the new Robocop before it comes out tomorrow, you'll likely find that the prevailing sentiment is that it's a lot better than it had any reason to be, and indeed it is. Against all odds, Jose Padilha's remake has assembled the best cast for such an unwanted 'look back' since 2004's The Manchurian Candidate, synthesized a modern (if not ground-breaking) aesthetic that's still reverent to the original's future-scape, and made the action relevant to the modern day without visible strain. It is, however (with the exception of Samuel L. Jackson's Fox News-esque pundit), a singularly humorless film, something that might not work to its detriment so clearly if the original were not name-dropped as distractingly as it is. This new movie is a surprisingly solid in the action department, but it's not capital-r Robocop in the way that »
- Anders Nelson
I'm not sure what it is about Aussie horror, but I love almost all of it. And I certainly love the three movies that Severin Films has announced to Blu-ray later this year. Those looking to junk their DVD editions of Patrick, Thirst, and Dead Kids (aka Strange Behavior) can rejoice!
From the Press Release:
In the late ‘70s and early ‘80s while films like My Brilliant Career and Breaker Morant were putting Australia’s ‘New Wave’ on the map, a depraved generation of young Aussie filmmakers was putting a very different kind of movie on screens. Three ‘Ozploitation’ horrors, Patrick, Dead Kids & Thirst, will have their Blu-ray debut from Severin Films, while their sub-label Intervision will issue the definitive compilation Ozploitation Trailer Explosion. »
- Matt Serafini
'If I'm wrong, I'm insane. If I'm right, it's worse': in conspiracy films – from Rosemary's Baby to State of Play – solving the crime does not bring peace. Michael Newton investigates a rich cinematic genre
Some believe that JFK was shot by his driver, some that Bobby Kennedy was killed by one of his guards; some believe the world is ruled by a Yale fraternity, some by lizard-aliens in disguise; some believe that Obama is a Communist mole; some that, back in 1966, Paul McCartney died. These notions are, at best, deluded; but as potential pitches for an as yet unmade Hollywood movie, they might just secure the contract. For, in movies, you can believe that the moon shots were faked, or that men are replacing their wives with compliant robots, or that space shuttles are firing earthquake-inducing weapons, or that the world itself is a delusion – and in each case you could be proved right. »
- Michael Newton
After 40 years, the British-born actress who conquered Hollywood and starred in TV's Murder, She Wrote is back on the West End stage. As she approaches her 90s, she's in her theatrical prime
In the play Blithe Spirit, the wildly eccentric and chaotic clairvoyant Madame Arcati, Noël Coward's most colourful creation, announces that "time is the reef upon which all our frail mystic ships are wrecked".
No aphorism has ever applied less than this does to the actress now about to don the headscarves and bangles to play Arcati in the West End at the age of 88. Dame Angela Lansbury, ennobled earlier this month, has defied the laws of nature by becoming more theatrically prolific as her years have advanced. In 2007, she was Tony award-nominated for her role in a new Terrence McNally play, Deuce, on Broadway; in 2010, she was nominated again for a revival of Sondheim's A Little Night Music; and then, »
- Vanessa Thorpe
Lone Survivor: Wingard’s Latest a Near Perfect Mix of Subtext, Comedy and Satisfying Thrills
After contributing to several anthology films, including the V/H/S films and The ABCs of Death, director Adam Wingard and screenwriter Simon Barrett return to their first feature since 2011’s You’re Next, (a film that finally hit theaters to warm reception in 2013) with The Guest. Adept talents for entertaining, tongue-in-cheek scenarios, Wingard and Barrett exert equal levels of over-the-top bits with their latest endeavor, but with a sharper mix of subversive commentary and tightly plotted thrills that feels like an homage to the off-the-cuff glory days of John Carpenter. A penchant for comedic asides may cause fans of their previous works to favor something like You’re Next, but Wingard and Barrett deliver a fun, stylish, highly enjoyable throwback with their latest, the kind of film genre fans endlessly seek but so »
- Nicholas Bell
Lansbury was one of about 1000 British subjects on the Queen's New Year's Honors List, according to the Associated Press. All of those honored were recognized for services to their community or to the national life of the country. While the honors are bestowed twice each year, this list was the first to include more women than men. Called the Order of the British Empire, the honor was established in 1917.
88-year-old Lansbury may be best known to American audiences as Jessica Fletcher in the long-running "Murder, She Wrote," but her long career includes many other highlights. Lansbury's career began in 1944 when the teenaged actress appeared in "Gaslight" and in "National Velvet" (co-starring with Elizabeth Taylor). She achieved her first Oscar nomination for "Gaslight," followed by two more in 1946 ("The Picture of Dorian Gray »
7 items from 2014
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