August 20, 2010 |
Mark Twain famously said that politicians, old buildings and prostitutes become respectable with age. To that category, a provocative and disturbing new documentary claims, you can add Nazi propaganda films. "A Film Unfinished," directed by Yael Hersonski, focuses on about an hour of incomplete Nazi footage shot in the infamous Warsaw Ghetto in May 1942, just months before the ghetto was liquidated and its half a million Jewish residents sent to their deaths. That footage, found without sound or credits, was discovered in cans labeled simply "The Ghetto" in a concrete vault hidden in a forest.
April 18, 2013 |
Are you suffering from an existential crisis? Take two Tylenol and call me in the morning. New research suggests that acetaminophen, the main ingredient in Tylenol, may be able to alleviate the pain of an existential crisis in the same way it alleviates the pain of a pounding headache. An over-the-counter pill for those crushing moments of uncertainty? Yes, please. Previous studies have shown that physical pain and social pain -- like the pain of feeling left out of a game -- have evolved to use similar neurological mechanisms.
December 15, 2013 |
Tom Laughlin, who came to fame as the half-Native American, half-white ex-Green Beret in the 1971 indie blockbuster "Billy Jack," died Thursday at age 82. A lot of his films are on DVD and on streaming services. If you want to go back to his earliest films, check out "The Delinquents" (1957) -- which was directed by Robert Altman -- "South Pacific" (1958) and even "Gidget" (1959). And for those who want to revisit his best-known films, or perhaps see them for the first time, here are five: PHOTOS: Tom Laughlin, filmmaker who drew huge following for 'Billy Jack,' dies "The Born Losers": Laughlin first introduced Billy Jack in this low-budget 1967 biker film, which American International Pictures released in 1968.
January 7, 2014 |
Santa Clarita, the suburban northern Los Angeles County community that has played Afghanistan, Kentucky and Washington, D.C, had a record year for film and TV production. The city generated 1,264 location film days in 2013, up 38% from last year. Those projects generated an estimated $30.5 million in spending on wages, hotels, catering and other goods and services in the city, up from $21.7 million in 2012, according to preliminary figures from the Santa Clarita film office. It marks the third consecutive record year for filming activity in Santa Clarita, which saw steady gains in television production, commercial shoots and mostly lower budget movies, including “Love and Mercy” and “Kitchen Sink.” ON LOCATION: Where the cameras roll Two high-profile features that also filmed in Santa Clarita last year were the Denzel Washington thriller “2 Guns” and Marvel Studios' “Iron Man 3," which was mostly filmed outside of California.
July 5, 2012 |
When I was with a group of parents earlier this week, watching our kids play in a 14-and-under baseball tournament, I asked them how many of the boys - aged 13 and 14--had gone to see the R-rated movie “Ted.” The answer: Just about all of 'em. But here's what I found really surprising: Nearly all of them went with their mothers. Put simply: Despite its rampant drug use, crude sexual banter and profanity-fueled humor, “Ted” has become a family movie. I have to admit that I wasn't exactly shocked.
November 12, 2012 |
Steven Spielberg's "Lincoln" and Sam Mendes' "Skyfall," the latest installment in the James Bond series, both enjoyed overflow crowds at theaters this weekend, including one venue of particular note -- the 1,012-seat Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills -- which had to turn away film academy members who showed up too close to the movies' 7:30 p.m. start times. "Lincoln" screened Saturday night and, judging from the ovations afforded the post-screening panel -- director Spielberg, producer Kathleen Kennedy, leads Daniel Day-Lewis and Sally Field, screenwriter Tony Kushner and composer John Williams -- the film appears poised to fulfill its promise as an awards-season juggernaut. "You could feel the respect in the room, but it went beyond that," said one academy member in attendance.
March 28, 2011
Charles McGraw The gravely voiced actor, who died in 1980 at age 66, played a hit man in the 1946 noir classic "The Killers" and went on to appear in such noir hits as 1950's "Armored Car Robbery, 1951's "Roadblock" and the 1952 classic "The Narrow Margin. " Audrey Totter Totter, now 92, made her film debut in 1945's "Main Street After Dark" and excelled in numerous film noirs, including Robert Montgomery's 1947 version of "Lady in the Lake" and "High Wall," which opens the "Noir City" festival.
June 2, 2011 |
The Dances With Films Festival was born out of a typical Hollywood rejection: 15 years ago, Leslee Scallon and Michael Trent made a feature film for $50,000. They submitted it to a bunch of festivals, only to be turned down. "When we got back all of those generic rejection letters, you start wondering at some point did they even look at my film?" Scallon recalled about "Indemnity. " "Did they even see it?" Trent decided they should organize a festival that would feature their film plus 15 other starless, low-budget indies.
February 7, 2010 |
When girls are good they are very good, but when they are bad they are even better. And during the height of the film noir genre in the 1940s and '50s, some of the juiciest roles for women were as femmes fatales in snappy B-movies. Sony's terrific two-volume "Bad Girls of Film Noir" DVD collections, due out Tuesday, offer eight scrappy samples featuring several female icons of the genre. Volume I kicks off with the 1950 thriller "The Killer That Stalked New York." The killer in question is played by Evelyn Keyes, though she isn't a typical film noir villainess.
April 18, 1993 |
In Adrian Lyne's new film, "Indecent Proposal," billionaire playboy Robert Redford comes to visit Demi Moore at her realty company. As he walks into her office, we catch a glimpse of Moore's secretary, a blond bimbo busily filing her nails and reading "Backlash," Susan Faludi's 1991 expose of the war against women's rights. The shot is meant as a playful jab at Faludi. But after seeing Lyne's new film, in which Redford offers a happily married young couple $1 million for a one-night stand with the sultry wife, the outspoken author--and many of her female Hollywood peers--are in no laughing mood.