March 21, 2010 |
Italian filmmaker Marco Bellocchio has been behind the camera for so long -- he made his directorial debut nearly half a century ago -- that it is hard to keep his whole career in mind without breaking it down into smaller, more easily digestible parts. There is the wunderkind Bellocchio of the mid-1960s, elegantly taking a sledgehammer to Italian society while barely out of short pants; the subtle European mannerist of the '80s and '90s, adapting occasionally obscure theatrical masterworks for the screen; and the daring political rabble-rouser of the past decade, Bellocchio's latest film, "Vincere," is the most explosive yet of his provocations, documenting the rise to power of future fascist dictator Benito Mussolini from the perspective of the wife he abandoned.
February 14, 1986 |
When designer Andre Laug died of a heart attack a little more than a year ago, his friends and associates had reason to believe that he had a premonition about his passing: He left behind some 4,000 sketches that could be used for future collections. Since his death, Laug's faithful coterie of employees has remained intact in his Rome atelier, and so has the Laug tradition of conservatively stylish, quality clothing.
May 24, 1992 |
Sick of body odor on subway trains and chain smokers in restaurants? Had your car boxed in by double parking or a good film ruined by the couple in front chatting? Fed up with litterbugs and road hogs? Take heart. In Portugal at least, slobs and other public nuisances are getting their wrists slapped by a government television campaign telling them to mind their manners.
March 21, 1985 |
Pete Ambagtsheer, a 57-year-old former sailor who dances and sings for tourists at Ports o' Call village in San Pedro, is mourning the theft of his puppet collection, along with other art works created over a lifetime as an itinerant artist. Ambagtsheer said he suspects that a waterfront transient he befriended took the ancient camper truck he lived in with his near-life-size puppets, and "everything--my puppets, my tools, my sketches, my home!" ". . .
September 22, 2009 |
An English newspaper once described a soccer star as having "developed splendidly and then aged as well as could be hoped for." That might sum up another U.K. icon, Monty Python. Because while it's been 25 years since the seminal six-man English comedy troupe has produced any new material, its thoughtful silliness still resonates. Now the group is again among us, cheerfully exploiting its upcoming 40th anniversary with a Python-palooza of events on tap: a new play in Los Angeles based on its classic TV sketches, a six-part documentary on the IFC channel, a book describing its live performances and a rare coming together of the group's five living members for a Q&A session in New York.
September 16, 2012 |
Sketches about funny voices and the 2012 election dominated the opening of "Saturday Night Live's" 38 th season. Host Seth MacFarlane, creator and voice actor of “Family Guy” and “Ted,” tended to rely upon his vocal characters for most of his starring scenes (a dark sketch about a damaged puppet class attendee was arguably the most successful in terms of both humor and originality), although the host did take a stab at celebrity impression during a fond Weekend Update tweak at the genial dimness of Olympics star Ryan Lochte.
July 15, 1987 |
The most astonishing thing about "NBC Presents the AFI Comedy Special" isn't that it's so consistently and so pathetically unfunny. It's that NBC doesn't seem to have a clue that it's created yet another TV crime against comedy (tonight at 10 on Channels 4, 36, 39).
May 9, 1998
Sid Caesar, the real-life model for Max in Neil Simon's "Laughter on the 23rd Floor," dominated network television in the '50s with Milton Berle, Groucho Marx, Lucille Ball, Jackie Gleason, Phil Silvers and Jack Benny. "Your Show of Shows," Caesar's NBC program (1950-54) nurtured the best comedy writers--among them Mel Brooks, Woody Allen and Larry Gelbart, who all went on to stage and screen careers, and of course Simon, our most successful commercial playwright.