November 19, 1989 |
The story of the making of "Thelonious Monk: Straight No Chaser" took a lucky turn about two years ago, when a pair of documentary makers hooked up with one of the most powerful men in the movie business. "I was in Kansas City, doing research for the film 'Bird,' " jazz fan and one-man film industry Clint Eastwood recalled, "when I happened to see a poster on the wall at the Musicians' Union, advertising a film called 'The Last of the Blue Devils.'
March 15, 2007 |
Want tickets? May the force be with you. "Star Wars" will celebrate its 30th anniversary with a special screening April 23 at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' Samuel Goldwyn Theater. The evening kicks off the academy's fourth annual "Great to Be Nominated" series, which showcases best picture Oscar nominees that garnered the most nominations in a particular year but didn't win in the top category.
November 17, 1989 |
"Thelonious Monk: Straight No Chaser" (at the AMC Century 14) breaks the mold that has long been evident in movies about jazz artists. Unlike the fictional and heavily downbeat "Round Midnight," or the fictionalized facts of "Bird," or the depressing Chet Baker documentary "Let's Get Lost," this is a superbly crafted mixture of old and new footage. (Monk died in 1982 at 63.
September 12, 2007 |
It's hard not to love Tony Bennett -- it would be like hating enthusiasm, or disdaining laughter. The singer, who turned 81 in August and is arguably, oddly, in the prime of his career, is a kind of personified argument for life itself and the deserving subject of a ragged yet invigorating new PBS "American Masters" documentary, "Tony Bennett: The Music Never Ends," co-produced by and featuring Clint Eastwood as an interviewer.
August 14, 1988 |
Little by little, the audio-visual information that can contribute to our knowledge of the sight and sound of jazz history is becoming more generally available. Some of the great documentaries, such as the recent two-part examination of Duke Ellington, are reaching us via public television. A few have been shown theatrically; others (including several of those reviewed below) languished on the shelf for many years before a distributor was found.
December 30, 1989 |
Pardon us for mixing our metals, but next month marks the silver anniversary of the Golden Feather Awards. The first of these surveys were for the year 1965. So much has changed during this momentous quarter-century that it seems fitting to start with a few retrospective thoughts before tackling the 1989 agenda. As 1965 came to a close, Wynton Marsalis had recently turned 4. Two members of the vocal group Take 6 were yet to be born; the oldest was 3.