April 3, 2014 |
Once again, Bill Clinton proved that being an ex-president, surrounded by the rosy glow of the past, beats being the current pilloried resident of the White House. A Wednesday night guest on comedian Jimmy Kimmel's late-night ABC show, Clinton was tight-lipped about his family's future political plans, leaving that to Hillary Rodham Clinton to eventually divulge, but embraced his 1992 moniker as the nation's “first black president” - and the actual first black president. “I loved being called the first black president, but Barack Obama really is,” Clinton told Kimmel, to laughs.
April 3, 2014 |
To truly get "Under the Skin," it's helpful to come in with no preconceptions, no expectations, and just give yourself over to the primal ooze of the experience filmmaker Jonathan Glazer has created and Scarlett Johansson has made brilliantly, unnervingly real. Watching this film feels like a genesis moment - of sci-fi fable, of filmmaking, of performance - with all the ambiguity and excitement that implies. It's as if director and star have gone into some alien space to discover what embodies a person, exposing the interior dynamic of psyche and soul and its relationship to the exterior.
April 2, 2014 |
When filmmaker Darren Aronofsky started scouting locations for his biblical flood epic, "Noah," he had two potentially competing needs. The landscapes on which he would shoot exteriors needed at first to look like an uninhabitable wasteland, and, after the deluge, a new garden of Eden, where Noah, his family and his ark of animals could begin to repopulate the earth. The writer-director's production team considered Death Valley, deserts in Mexico and the Canary Islands. But when they visited Iceland, "Noah" found its port of call.
February 20, 2014 |
The extraterrestrial species that the denizens of "Almost Human" have close encounters with is of the parasitic variety that also possesses the ability to manipulate the behavior of its hosts. Mark (Josh Ethier) reemerges two years after his abduction by aliens and immediately embarks on a killing spree. With circumstances of Mark's inexplicable disappearance now recurring, his best friend, Seth (Graham Skipper), and now-ex girlfriend, Jen (Vanessa Leigh), begin fearing the worst.
February 17, 2014 |
No one can accuse the people at the CW of not giving its audience what they think it wants. "Star-Crossed," which premieres Monday and might easily be reverse-engineered from its title alone - it's "Romeo and Juliet," with aliens - adds another story of cross-cultural, interspecies romance to the network of "Beauty and the Beast" and "The Vampire Diaries" (and "Hart of Dixie," for that matter). For a certain sort of moony viewer, there is no love so true as the impossible love that is meant to be. Created by Meredith Averill (formerly a story editor at "The Good Wife")
February 1, 2014 |
The stereotypical Sundance movie is thought of as something capital-Q quirky, typically a story of family dysfunction or coming-of-age. This year's festival, across its numerous sections, featured a newfound immersion in genre storytelling that pushed the films to places that were familiar but with unexpected and most welcome twists. Gareth Evans' "The Raid 2," for instance, does for the blood-soaked Asian action film what "The Dark Knight" did for the superhero film, injecting it with a seriousness, a depth of characterization and a scope of storytelling that raises it to a new level of legitimacy.