9 items from 2016
Maryland-born character actor and voice-over legend Daniel Stern can look back on a career filled with accomplishments. In a very competitive industry, he has worked steadily in TV and film since 1979, not to mention countless radio commercials. His credits include such well-regarded films as City Slickers, Diner, and Breaking Away. The man narrated six seasons of The Wonder Years, for crying out loud. But, to much of the movie-watching world, Stern will always be Marv, the lanky, dimwitted burglar who lets out a scream for the ages when Macaulay Culkin places a tarantula on his face in 1990’s John Hughes-scripted Home Alone. If a video posted to Stern’s official (if underutilized) YouTube channel is any indication, the actor has come to peace with this legacy, if “come to peace” means that he still lets out a blood-curdling shriek at the very sight of a tarantula.
A minute-long ...
- Joe Blevins
Chicago – After he reigned as the father in the classic 1979 film “Breaking Away,” actor Paul Dooley suddenly became everyone’s Dad – and by everyone that meant Molly Ringwald (“Sixteen Candles”), Julia Roberts (“Runaway Bride”) and Helen Hunt (“Mad About You”). He tells all in Part Two of a comprehensive interview.
The former “Paul Brown’ was born in West Virginia, and studied acting at West Virginia University, before heading to New York City and a new career as Paul Dooley. He did stage work, stand-up comedy and the New York City version of The Second City. He got his big break in the original stage version of “The Odd Couple” in 1965, directed by the legendary Mike Nichols. While working the stage, he appeared in a number of commercials, eventually moving to Los Angeles to “be where the action is.”
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
Chicago – If there ever was a quintessential “Dad” in movies of the last generation, it would have to be Paul Dooley. The comedian and character actor is best known for portraying the patriarch in “Breaking Away” (1979) and “Sixteen Candles” (1984), but was also in director’s Robert Altman’s ‘ensemble’ and has had a stellar career.
The former “Paul Brown” was born in West Virginia, and studied acting at West Virginia University, before heading to New York City and a new career as Paul Dooley. He did stage work, stand-up comedy and the New York City version of The Second City (story below), before getting his big break in the original stage version of “The Odd Couple” in 1965, directed by the legendary Mike Nichols. While working the stage, he appeared in a number of commercials, eventually moving to Los Angeles to “be where the action is.”
- email@example.com (Adam Fendelman)
It’s easy to get lost in a game of Spot the Reference while watching “Stranger Things.” This creepy Netflix drama about odd events in a small Indiana town in the ’80s calls upon the ghosts of “Stand by Me” and “The X-Files,” and large parts of it serve as an extended homage to the mid-career work of Steven Spielberg, especially “E.T.”
It’s not just the banana-seat bikes and sassy pigtailed little sister that evoke that classic film. “Stranger Things” also mourns lost innocence and probes the tender fault lines of fractured, beleaguered families. At the same time, it efficiently unites various aspects of horror and suspense serials you’ve seen before, and some of its scares are joltingly effective, which makes up for the fact that originality is not exactly its strong suit. Even so, this promising drama often has ambiguous and even sad things on its mind, and »
- Maureen Ryan
Currently holding the title for the most-liked trailer in YouTube history – skewed by the online spat with Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, but impressive nonetheless – Dice’s Wwi-set shooter Battlefield 1 has truly nailed the first impression ahead of its arrival in October.
Breaking away from the numbered series – many had assumed the studio was primed to reveal Battlefield 5 – though a trip back to The Great War beckons, and publisher EA believes Dice is cooking up the “biggest and most innovative” Battlefield yet.
Featuring a “deep story and unprecedented variety,” BF1 is reportedly bringing a lot of changes to the franchise’s formula, and not just in terms of time period. Andrew Wilson, CEO of Electronic Arts, claimed that “with Battlefield 1, we’ve set out to deliver the biggest and most innovative Battlefield game ever, with a deep story and unprecedented variety in the gameplay powered by our Frostbite engine.”
Adding to this, »
- Michael Briers
The walls of Richard Linklater’s production offices in Austin read like the diary of an avid movie lover. There are hundreds of vintage posters in every room: “The Clock,” starring Judy Garland; Jean-Luc Godard’s “Bande a part”; the Fred Astaire musical “Daddy Long Legs”; the 1956 masterpiece “Bigger Than Life,” which flopped at the box office; and “Straw Dogs,” to name a few.
“This is the tip of the iceberg of my collection,” says Linklater, the director of such modern classics as “Dazed and Confused,” “Boyhood” and “Before Sunset.” “I’d go to Paris and just go to the poster shop. Now you can do so much online.”
Linklater’s latest film is a similar ode to a bygone era. “Everyone Wants Some!!,” which debuted at South by Southwest before its April 1 premiere from Paramount Pictures, follows the arrival to college of a freshman baseball player named Jake (Blake Jenner) in the 1980s. »
- Ramin Setoodeh
That’s right. Hulu. I’m here to tell you that there’s a cinematic streaming goldmine available on Hulu that includes recent hits, older classics, domestic releases, and foreign imports. It’s even home to hundreds of Criterion titles. Sure there’s plenty of filler and seemingly thousands of titles I’ve never heard of before, but I’m not here to talk about possible gems like The Christmas Clause… I’m here to recommend some good movies to watch this month on Hulu. Pick of the Month: Memories of Murder (2003) A serial killer is stalking women in rural South Korea, and the police seem powerless to stop him. A lack of resources, political upheaval, and conflicts between the local cops and a big-city detective strain the investigation, but as more weeks pass more women fall victim. Bong Joon-ho (The Host, Mother) hasn’t made a bad movie yet, and »
- Rob Hunter
Those cracks in the ceiling are hiding a lot more than dry rot in “Under the Shadow,” a satisfyingly tense and atmospheric thriller set in a haunted Tehran apartment during the terrifying final days of the Iran-Iraq War. Slyly merging a familiar but effective genre exercise with a grim allegory of female oppression, Babak Anvari’s resourceful writing-directing debut grounds its premise in something at once vaguely political and ineluctably sinister; imagine an Asghar Farhadi remake of “The Babadook” and you’re halfway there. Acquired by Netflix before its Sundance midnight premiere, Anvari’s film looks to scare up more coin than “A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night” (2014), to name another Park City-premiered horror movie by a director of Iranian descent; unlike that more austere chiller, “Shadow” delivers the sort of sleek, swiftly paced freakout that streaming customers will gladly look past subtitles to experience.
Deep knowledge of the »
- Justin Chang
In this special episode of Off The Shelf, Ryan and Brian take a look at the best DVD and Blu-ray 2015.
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Follow-Up Ryan buys the Ernest and Celestine Blu-ray from Plain Archive Ultra HD Blu-ray Pre-orders Live, March 1st release: Fox, Sony, WB, Shout! and now Lionsgate Curzon Tarkovsky Ryan’s Top 10 List of 2015 Classics from the Van Beuren Studio (Thunderbean Animation) Thunderbirds: The Complete Series (Timeless Media Group / Shout! Factory) The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension (Arrow UK) Twice Upon A Time (Warner Archive Collection) Journey to the Center of the Earth (Twilight Time) Watership Down (The Criterion Collection) Walt Disney Animation Studios: Short Films Collection (Disney) 3-D Rarities (Flicker Alley) Spartacus: Restored Edition (Universal) The Apu Trilogy (The Criterion Collection)
- Ryan Gallagher
9 items from 2016
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