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We spout opinion, comment on the current zeitgeist and overanalyze pop culture and mainstream movies. Whether in the form of lists, survey questions or straight editorials, we hope to make thinking deeply about film a fun and stimulating activity for all.

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Tom Bosley in "Paper Clips"

  • By Christopher Campbell
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  • October 19, 2010 10:32 AM
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  • 3 Comments
We lost Tom Bosley to lung cancer today, and though he'll certainly be best remembered as the dad on "Happy Days" and might also be thought of for his ability to endorse garbage bags, it's becoming my tradition here to spotlight documentaries featuring the recently deceased (previously with Sally Menke and Tony Curtis). This is admittedly only partly to memorialize the departed film or TV personality by looking at something more candid, genuine or telling of the individual as him or herself. It's also partly to recognize the particular documentary (or documentaries). I hope that's not thought disrespectful.
More: Obituary

Tony Curtis in 'The Celluloid Closet' and Talking About Cary Grant

  • By Christopher Campbell
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  • September 30, 2010 3:31 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Tony Curtis was a great actor. But he's one of those guys I remember as well for his off screen personality as for his on screen performances. And given that I said goodbye to Sally Menke this week by spotlighting an appearance in a documentary, I'm going to do the same for the man better known for playing iconic roles in "Some Like it Hot," "Spartacus," "Sweet Smell of Success" and, of course, "The Great Race." He's also one of the most memorable figures in "The Celluloid Closet," a 1995 documentary about the history of homosexuality in Hollwyood and its cinema. Talking about the first two films I mentioned, he comes off fairly tolerant of their gay undertones, which is why I find it interesting that he was part of the whole anti-"Brokeback Mountain" contingent of the Academy a few years back. But I don't want to go into that business.
More: Obituary

Sally Menke and Quentin Tarantino. A Short Tribute to an Editor-Filmmaker Relationship

  • By Christopher Campbell
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  • September 28, 2010 6:33 AM
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  • 2 Comments
I can't believe anyone went hiking in L.A. in that record-high temperature yesterday, but Oscar-nominated editor Sally Menke did. And sadly, she was later found dead in Griffith Park, where she had been walking with a friend and the friend's dog. The heat is obviously being said to be a possible factor, but her true cause of death is unknown.
More: Obituary

Remembering "Beetlejuice" Actor Glenn Shadix (1952-2010)

  • By Christopher Campbell
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  • September 8, 2010 2:08 AM
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  • 2 Comments
I'll be perfectly honest. I never knew Glenn Shadix by name until he died. To me, he was simply 'Otho.' I think he was probably that for a lot of people, as the role of the snooty, flamboyant and trendy interior designer and occult hobbyist in Tim Burton's "Beetlejuice" is surely his most significant. Some may have viewed him as just another character actor relegated to the common moniker 'that guy!,' recognizing his face in "Demolition Man" or "Dunston Checks In." Perhaps some identified his voice underneath his orangutan suit in Burton's remake of "Planet of the Apes," or providing the Mayor's lines in "The Nightmare Before Christmas." Outside of "Beetlejuice" I always loved him best in "Heathers" as 'Father Ripper,' the priest who officiates the many funerals and recommends the teens of Sherwood, Ohio, get to know the "righteous dude" Jesus Christ.
More: Obituary

Remembering Character Actor James Gammon (1940-2010)

  • By Christopher Campbell
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  • July 19, 2010 6:02 AM
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  • 3 Comments
While I was recalling "Major League" over the weekend, thinking back to when Tom Berenger looked better than he does in "Inception," another actor from the baseball comedy was being mourned in California. James Gammon, who played the part of Coach Lou Brown in two "Major League" films, died Friday of cancer in Costa Mesa. The stage and screen vet was easily identifiable to film fans by his distinctly scruffy looks and low, scratchy voice. It's hard to imagine him being suited for any other job than character actor.
More: Obituary

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