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Thompson on Hollywood

At the Movies Debuts New Hosts

At the Movies Debuts New Hosts
Thank the Lord for small favors. Michael Phillips and Tony Scott (he should ditch the too-formal A.O.--this is about relating to people, folks) have debuted their new At the Movies format. It's fine by me. They are still a tad stilted--they've never worked together before. Phillips has more experience as a co-host than Scott. But they'll loosen up and let the fur fly. It already feels so much better. I hope it works. I like the idea of looking at past classics, too.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 8, 2009 11:30 AM
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  • 5 Comments

Introducing New At the Movies Team

After they got the sack, the young and callow two Bens vanished from At the Movies, which is now gearing up for a Labor Day Weekend reboot. Just watching this preview of the Chicago Tribune's Michael Phillips and the New York Times' A.O. Scott makes me eager to get back into the At the Movies habit, spending time with two brainy film critics who will dig way deeper into movies than any ATM team since the original Ebert and Siskel. At a time when the overall film discussion seems to be dumbing down, these guys are going to smarten things up. Thank God.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 1, 2009 1:49 AM
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  • 12 Comments

Critics Faves: Arty or Artful?

Critics Faves: Arty or Artful?
In the fall season, as hundreds of movies are launched and weighed at film festivals, critics come into their own. They don't hold much sway with audiences in the summer. But in the fall, suddenly, what they think does matter.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 31, 2009 8:58 AM
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  • 12 Comments

Best British Films Poll

The London Observer has published its best British films poll 1984-2009, from "more than 60 experts - directors, screenwriters, actors, critics - and a few smart outsiders." They asked me and include my list, too, on the jump. I picked 30 films from the list for our own poll. Write in any others you like, please. (UPDATE: Here's their top 25 list.)
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 30, 2009 9:33 AM
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  • 7 Comments

Internet: Critics' Friend, Young or Old

Internet: Critics' Friend, Young or Old
The latest film critics pile-on this week started with the suggestion from The New York Observer's Christopher Rosen that the NYT's A.O. Scott and the Chicago Sun-Times' Roger Ebert were attacking movie audiences for being so dumb. Then Drew McWeeny at Hitfix responded that older critics were losing their touch with younger audiences. And Glenn Kenny jumped into the fray on the young vs. old critics' divide.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 14, 2009 5:46 AM
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  • 4 Comments

Disney/ABC Replaces Lyons and Mankiewicz with Adult Critics Scott and Phillips

Disney/ABC Replaces Lyons and Mankiewicz with Adult Critics Scott and Phillips
Yes! Sometimes the grown-ups win.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 5, 2009 11:45 AM
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  • 11 Comments

Must-Own Film Books

We all have lists of must-own film books. Mine goes like this:
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 5, 2009 2:18 AM
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  • 27 Comments

Weekend Catch-Up: Holiday B.O., Harry Potter Review, Brennan, Klein R.I.P., Andreessen Fun

After a lazy holiday weekend, I herewith share with you my gleanings of what's been going on.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 5, 2009 4:23 AM
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  • 0 Comments

New Film Critics Aggregator Challenges Rotten Tomatoes

Never rest on your laurels. When something is working, something new and improved comes along. While many of my pals prefer critics' aggregator Metacritic, which is leaner, more elegant, pickier and more pure than the mighty but messier, more inclusive and more crowded Rotten Tomatoes, there's a new kid in town: Movie Review Intelligence. It claims to add more weight to powerful critics like Roger Ebert, and boasts cool search functions (studio, genre etc), but my initial read on this is that it's designed to be studio (read advertiser) friendly.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 14, 2009 7:31 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Cannes: Critics' Week and Director's Fortnight

It turns out Francis Ford Coppola has agreed to show his Argentinian drama Tetro in Cannes after all, as the opener of Director's Fortnight (or Quinzaine). That's a good compromise; Coppola had turned down Thierry Fremaux's offer to place it out-of-competition in the official selection.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 23, 2009 8:06 AM
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  • 0 Comments

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