September 6, 2013 |
"Riddick" -- the third sci-fi film to star Vin Diesel as the interplanetary antihero of the same name -- arrives nine years after its predecessor, "The Chronicles of Riddick," and 13 years after the original, "Pitch Black. " Unfortunately for Diesel and series writer-director David Twohy, "Riddick" hasn't exactly returned to a hero's welcome. For every film critic who finds it a fun, gory slice of genre entertainment, there's another who finds it stale and one-dimensional. In the Los Angeles Times, for example, Michael Phillips calls "Riddick" "extremely violent, cleverly managed fun. " He explains, "This is not one of those Johnny-come-lately sequels preoccupied with getting a new audience up to speed on where the story was. It's about living in the moment, in the now, and killing in the now. " Diesel, Phillips says, "has discovered what it means to be a certain kind of movie star, working hard but not too, serving material that, here, does what it's supposed to do. " PHOTOS: Fall movie sneaks 2013 On the other hand, USA Today's Claudia Puig warns , "Move along, there's nothing to see and no one to root for in this murky franchise reboot.
July 16, 2013 |
TV is the new black for film gentry. Once regarded as a purgatory for serious actors and producers, television has been attracting top-tier movie talent on both sides of the camera for years thanks in no small part to the deep character studies encouraged by cable networks. And this year's Primetime Emmy nominations, which roll out early Thursday morning, may underscore the point as never before. Film stars Kevin Spacey, Jane Fonda, Jeff Daniels, Shirley MacLaine, Holly Hunter, Al Pacino, Helen Mirren, Michael Douglas, Matt Damon and Kevin Bacon, as well as respected filmmakers David Fincher, Steven Soderbergh and Jane Campion are just some of the cinema-tilted talent in line to get the early morning wake-up call late this week.
July 5, 2013 |
Dolores Hart was one of Hollywood's top ingenues, giving Elvis Presley his first screen kiss in 1957's "Loving You" and then reuniting with him a year later in "King Creole. " She worked with such legends as Anthony Quinn and Anna Magnani in 1957's "Wild Is the Wind" and Robert Ryan and Montgomery Clift in 1958's "Lonelyhearts," then earned a Tony Award nomination in 1959 for her first play, the romantic comedy "The Pleasure of His Company. " A devout Catholic since the age of 10, she broke off her engagement to Don Robinson in 1963 and entered the cloistered Benedictine Abbey of Regina Laudis in Bethlehem, Conn., where as Mother Dolores Hart she has lead a life of contemplation and hospitality.
June 14, 2013 |
I spent the last 10 days or so on the Tonys beat, an enjoyable seasonal sojourn that offers a nice change of pace from, say, the grind of Oscar season or the hothouse of TV show sets. You can spend your whole life covering Hollywood and not come across someone who suggests Abraham Lincoln may have had a disturbing shoe fetish. Hollywood has of course been making its own forays to the Great White Way in recent years. For some this has been a fruitful pursuit. Tom Hanks was much-embraced for heading to the big stage to play a real-life journalist, even if Tonys voters didn't seem to want to reward him for the trip.
June 11, 2013 |
Judgment Day comes to Hollywood with a vengeance in "This Is the End. " Jonah Hill is in bed with the devil - in James Franco's mansion. An inferno rages in the front yard, and movie star egos are filleted for fun. When the apocalyptic comedy gets deadly serious about roasting the ethos of celebrity, its satire grows white-hot. As the devil's brigade sets the Hollywood Hills ablaze, "This Is the End" considers many burning questions. Does movie-star cred automatically put one on the A-list of the blessed?
June 7, 2013 |
Another Broadway season, another cavalcade of television and movie stars testing their stage mettle. Some come to build their acting muscles, others come for the publicity splash, and a select few come because they simply can't stay away. The chance to perform before an audience in a work that is resonant with meaning outweighs all other considerations, including their agents and managers begging them not to take themselves out of the running for a bit part in a preteen franchise film.