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Thompson on Hollywood

DVD Review: Sink Your Teeth Into Universal's 100th Anniversary Monsters Collection

As part of its 100th anniversary celebration, Universal has released a box set spotlighting four classic titles from the studio's heyday of creature features: "Dracula," "Frankenstein," "Bride of Frankenstein" and "Creature from the Black Lagoon." (Sadly, no "Wolf Man.")
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • March 7, 2012 4:25 PM
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  • 4 Comments

Memoir of a Character Actor: Dark Visions of a Golden Age

Rick Lenz's memoir "North of Hollywood" is full of "good drinkers." Jason Robards was one, shimmying up a flagpole one night; George C. Scott was another. Jackie Gleason, smashed through much of the shoot of a failed comedy called "How Do I Love Thee?" (1971), is not counted a "good drinker." He couldn't hide the slosh behind the smile.
  • By Matt Brennan
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  • March 7, 2012 11:37 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Why 'John Carter' Is a Fascinating Disaster, Early Reviews (Video)

You could see Disney's "John Carter" (March 9) shaping up as a misfire from a long way off. No studio has projected "disaster" so loudly since Sony's misbegotten remake of "Godzilla" in 1998. For a $250 million movie to be tracking near a $25 million opening is shocking.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 6, 2012 1:42 PM
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  • 26 Comments

Now and Then: From 'Ferris' to 'Sleepover,' Teens, and Times, Have Changed

"The Myth of the American Sleepover," David Robert Mitchell's independent film about a group of suburban Detroit teens messing around, and messing up, on a single night near the end of summer, is a quiet reminder of the power, and price, of looking.
  • By Matt Brennan
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  • March 5, 2012 7:28 AM
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  • 0 Comments

'The Walking Dead' Episode 4 Review: 'Judge, Jury, Executioner'

Perhaps it's because it originally set its own bar too high: “The Walking Dead” was so good out of the gate, such a great mixture of genre and sophistication, that its current episodes feel like a come-down.
  • By Terry Curtis Fox
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  • March 5, 2012 1:02 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Video: 'Alphaville' Remix; Why This Piece of 60s Pulp Fiction is Must-See Jean-Luc Godard

My favorite Jean-Luc Godard film, the glorious 1965 black-and-white surreal sci-fi noir "Alphaville," starring Eddie Constantine, Godard's wife Anna Karina and Paris at night, has gotten a snazzy remix (below). It's basically the opening montage with the French narration remixed to new music.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 1, 2012 12:48 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Why Masterpiece Classic's 'Downton Abbey' Season 2 Was Such a Smash

A few months ago, who would have bet that 5.4 million people would watch the two-hour finale of the second season of Masterpiece Classic’s “Downton Abbey?”
  • By Aljean Harmetz
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  • February 28, 2012 1:41 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Now and Then: Gay Biopics 'J. Edgar' and 'Milk' Reveal How History Is Made

"We must never forget our history," growls aging anti-Communist lion J. Edgar Hoover (Leonardo DiCaprio) near the end of "J. Edgar." "We must never lower our guard." Here, Janus-like in their fusion and opposition, lay the film's two faces: To narrate the past and hopefully to redeem it.
  • By Matt Brennan
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  • February 27, 2012 7:30 AM
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  • 0 Comments

'The Walking Dead,' Episode 3 Review: What About the Women?

“The Walking Dead” made an attitude adjustment this week. The episode, written by Scott M. Gimple & Glenn Mazzara and directed quite beautifully by Ernest R. Dickerson, was all about Shane and Rick together.
  • By Terry Curtis Fox
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  • February 26, 2012 11:59 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Scorsese's List of 85 Films You Must See

During an interview, off the top of his head Martin Scorsese gave writer Rick Tetzeli a list of 85 must-see films that influenced him. Of course as an NYU Cinema Studies graduate and so-called film expert, I had to check my mettle against Scorsese.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • February 24, 2012 7:21 PM
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  • 8 Comments

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