April 12, 1996 |
Meet Frank, Barbara, Martin, Gale, Jerry, Linda and, of course, Denise. Please. Because even though they're all great friends, they won't meet one another. Not in person. Not ever. "Denise Calls Up," one of the surprise treats of last year's Cannes Film Festival, is an unconventional burlesque of the modern age. It's about lives lived through telephones, modems, faxes, computers, conference calls and answering machines. Consider it a call-waiting comedy.
May 6, 1988 |
Disputes between a movie's distributor and its exhibitor rarely get a public airing. So it was unusual last week to see Richard Ingber, marketing president of the independent distributor New Century/Vista, quoted on the front page of Daily Variety. He was venting his frustration over some Southern California movie-theater operators who, after just one week's run, pulled the new fantasy-suspense-horror picture "Lady in White" from their theaters.
May 15, 1998 |
"Clockwatchers," which premiered at the 1997 Sundance Film Festival, is the estrogen version of a celebrated alumnus of that year's festival, "In the Company of Men." It explores how the soulless machinery of the workplace can destroy the spirit and reduce worker drones to, if not exactly the amoral monsters of Neil LaBute's scabrous work, then at least unpleasantly petty bickerers.
September 27, 1996 |
We all know about the survival of the fittest, but how about the propaganda of the species? By the end of "The Leopard Son"--the Discovery Channel's first theatrical release and a first-rate nature film--there's no arguing that leopards are the king of beasts. And that, in fact, lions are filthy pirates, cheetahs are cowardly, hyenas are opportunists, baboons are demonic and that man does well to stay at the far end of a telephoto lens.
September 11, 1998 |
Imagine a square cage, 14 by 14 feet, covered on all sides by what looks to be translucent panels with geometric Art Deco designs. This is the space in which Canadian filmmaker Vincenzo Natali has trapped six people in his highly ambitious and cerebral sci-fi thriller "Cube," a veritable nightmare of a movie.
May 2, 1990 |
The Edwards Cinema chain and the film distributor Cinecom were telling different stories Tuesday about Edwards' decision not to open the movie "Last Exit to Brooklyn" at the chain's Lido Cinema in Newport Beach on Friday.
September 18, 1998 |
There are times when the indomitable drive to get a labor-of-love movie made and released is not a triumphant occurrence. We tend to hear only about the cases in which the filmmakers' faith was justified and noteworthy screen careers were launched. But what about the others? At times it might be a mercy to dash the aspirants' hopes, so that they can get on with their lives.
July 28, 1991 |
John Francis, a veteran actor and director, has had a long run at Rio Hondo College. One of its first students 27 years ago, he is now a theater professor who for the past two weeks has been directing the musical "42nd Street." "I just kind of latched on, and it's been a big love affair ever since," said Francis, who was the 20th student to enroll at the college when it opened in 1964 at the old Little Lake Elementary School in Santa Fe Springs.
October 3, 1997 |
When the Irish finally take over the world, it'll be the likes of "The Matchmaker" that people look back on and say, "Ahhhh, that's how they caught us with our pants down. . . . " You know the movie drill: singing, praying, quaint traditions, barely comprehensible accents and someone doing the John Wayne-quiet man routine. Or in the case of Janeane Garofalo--star of "The Matchmaker"--the decidedly unquiet woman.