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Leonard Maltin

Christmas Treats From Bing Crosby

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • December 23, 2013 2:53 PM
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  • 0 Comments
No performer of the 20th century was more associated with Christmas than Bing Crosby and, while he’s been gone for decades, his voice still rings out on radios and Muzak systems whenever the holidays roll around.

There’s No Business Like…

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • August 28, 2013 3:29 PM
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  • 3 Comments
Last Friday, I witnessed one of the greatest nightclub performances I’ve ever seen when singer Marilyn Maye took the stage at Catalina Jazz Club in Los Angeles.

MEL BROOKS, BUSTER KEATON, THE 3 STOOGES AND MORE

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • December 18, 2012 1:00 AM
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  • 2 Comments
The goodies just keep piling up—for gift-giving or adding to your own library. I was delighted to contribute an essay about Mel Brooks’ career to Shout! Factory’s multi-disc set 'The Incredible Mel Brooks', but there is so much material in this collection I still haven’t gotten through it all. That’s OK with me because I can’t get enough of Brooks,

From Renoir To Ellington: Scanning Recent DVDs

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • March 12, 2012 1:07 AM
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  • 1 Comment
I haven’t been able to keep up with Twilight Time’s limited-edition DVD and Blu-ray releases since the company launched last year, so it’s ironic that the first disc I’ve spent real time with—Jean Renoir’s 'Swamp Water' (1941)—benefits least from the label’s innovative offering of isolated music tracks. That feature is much more valuable in other Twilight Time releases with scores by Bernard Herrmann, Franz Waxman, Hugo Friedhofer, et al., as well as 'Picnic', which I’ll discuss in a moment.

Movie News And Notes

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • February 22, 2012 1:00 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Here I am struggling to get an issue of my newsletter finished, after an embarrassing amount of time, and a brand-new fanzine arrives on my desk. Pop Twenty is an exceedingly handsome publication, bound like an oversized paperback and filled with rare and beautiful stills. It’s the brainchild of Bob Birchard and Mike Bifulco, who have pooled their resources to create a home for interviews, articles, and photo features focusing on all aspects of 20th Century pop culture, with an emphasis on the golden age of Hollywood. Bob’s lead article details the making of 'Gold Diggers of 1933', including the revelation that Busby Berkeley

Animated Jazz—And More

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • December 29, 2011 2:21 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Gordon Goodwin is a talented musician, composer, arranger—and animation buff. Years ago he got to score a pencil-test scene called “The Bedroom Argument” that was cut from 'Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs' and unearthed for a laserdisc release of the film; you can see (and hear) it now on YouTube. He’d almost forgotten about this long-ago assignment when it turned up online, and says, “I remember how awestruck I was to be working with that iconic material!

music review: Boardwalk Empire - Volume 1 (Elektra)

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • November 15, 2011 1:48 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Nothing evokes a period more vividly, or instantaneously, than music, and the producers of the HBO Prohibition drama 'Boardwalk Empire' have made canny use of vintage songs, both on-camera and off-, since their series began. Now some of the best selections have been gathered in a delightful CD (also available for download on iTunes) that features my favorite band, Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks, and a number of supremely talented singers who manage to vocally capture a bygone musical era.

My Kind Of Jazz

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • September 13, 2011 4:30 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Catching Up

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • August 22, 2011 4:35 AM
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  • 6 Comments
My Houston-based colleague, film critic, teacher and author Joe Leydon, has just turned 59, and feels that with a milestone year in front of him, it’s high time he caught up with famous films he’s never seen. We all have such a list, though some of us are more reluctant to admit it than others. Joe has not only decided to go public, but to publish a weekly diary of his observations. If you don’t read his reviews in Variety, or any number of other outlets, this may be a nice way to catch up with a good writer and lifelong film buff.

5,000 Fingers…And More

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • January 26, 2011 5:30 AM
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  • 1 Comment

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