August 31, 2008 |
The 25 best L.A. films of the last 25 years "Los ANGELES isn't a real city," people have said, "it just plays one on camera." It was a clever line once upon a time, but all that has changed. Los Angeles is the most complicated community in America -- make no mistake, it is a community -- and over the last 25 years, it has been both celebrated and savaged on the big screen with amazing efficacy. Damaged souls and flawless weather, canyon love and beach city menace, homeboys and credit card girls, freeways and fedoras, power lines and palm trees . . . again and again, moviegoers all over the world have sat in the dark and stared up at our Los Angeles, even if it was one populated by corrupt cops or a jabbering cartoon rabbit.
January 4, 2011 |
Most remakes of classic films are shadows of the originals. But Joel and Ethan Coen's version of the western "True Grit" ? with Jeff Bridges as Rooster Cogburn, newcomer Hailee Steinfeld as the plucky Mattie Ross and Matt Damon as Texas Ranger LaBoeuf ? has won over critics, audiences and even Kim Darby, who played the resolute Mattie in the 1969 original for which John Wayne won his only Oscar as the irascible Cogburn. "It's a wonderful movie," said Darby, now 63. "It's top drawer.
December 12, 2010
PHOTOGRAPHY Workshop Bring your digital camera and owner's manual and learn about your camera's basic functions and how to shoot better pictures. When, where: 6 p.m. Tuesday, at the REI store in Arcadia, 214 N. Santa Anita Ave. Admission, info: $20 for REI members; $40 for others. (626) 447-1062
February 22, 2011 |
Heading into Sunday's Academy Awards, "Exit Through the Gift Shop" is undoubtedly the most buzzed-about film in the documentary feature category. But the uncomfortable question persists: Is it real? The movie is anchored by two of the least reliable narrators in memory: Banksy, the anonymous British street artist; and Thierry Guetta, an eccentric French émigré to Los Angeles whose obsessive filming happens to capture the world of high-concept graffiti. In alternating interviews, the two recount the rise of anti-establishment vandals into the upper echelons of the art world, where their work quickly became commodified.
September 19, 2011
This trio of gridiron films scored big with audiences: 'Knute Rockne, All American' There is a lot of Hollywood fiction mixed into this 1940 true story of famed Notre Dame coach Pat O'Brien. Ronald Reagan shines as the Gipper. 'Heaven Can Wait' Warren Beatty stars in, produced, co-wrote and directed this charming 1978 comedy fantasy about a football player who dies and comes back to life in another body. 'Remember the Titans' Denzel Washington stars in this 2000 true-story hit based on a newly appointed African American high school coach in the '70s.
February 25, 2010 |
Creating a dramatic and believable depiction of people's lives in the running time of a motion picture is a challenge for most screenwriters and directors, but in "Up," Pete Docter and his creative team at Pixar had just a scant few minutes to give the back story of his protagonist, curmudgeonly senior citizen Carl Frederickson (voiced by Ed Asner), which would in turn give him an iron-clad reason to fly his entire house to South America via balloon. What's remarkable about the sequence is not only the scope of the time covered, which takes Carl and his beloved, Ellie, from childhood to old age, but also the complex emotional issues that it addresses, as well as the fact that it unfolds largely in total silence save for Michael Giacchino's Oscar-nominated score.