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Film

  • Ivo van Hove's The Damned

    Hatred as Source of All Evil at Park Avenue Armory

    By: Susan Hall - Jul 21st, 2018

    The Damned by Ivo van Hove, based on the screenplay of Luchino Visconti, tears through the Park Avenue Armory. The stage is in four parts, if you don’t include a scene which goes out onto the Park Avenue where a shocked dog walker sees the mad Sophie von Essenbeck running wildly in search of her son.

  • Oscar Winner Sebastain Lelio Directs Disobedience

    Jewish Life in England

    By: Jack Lyons - Jun 02nd, 2018

    “Disobedience” is a mesmerizing, interior, fascinating, and affecting screenplay that carefully structures the movie to squeeze maximum emotional impact from its two stars, which it does in spades. It’s a bold and daring film even by today’s standards.

  • Nana and Hitler Versus Picasso and the Others

    Two New Documentary Films

    By: Nancy Kempf - May 10th, 2018

    Two recent documentaries, both directorial feature film debuts, approach the memory and history of World War II from distinctly different and refreshing perspectives. Serena Dykman’s “Nana” is a eulogy, not only for her grandmother, Maryla Michalowski-Dyamant but for all victims of the Holocaust. Claudio Poli’s “Hitler versus Picasso and the Others” is a thorough history of the labyrinthine fate of European art during World War II.

  • 2018 AM-DOCS Film Festival

    Annual Program in Palm Springs

    By: Jack Lyons - May 06th, 2018

    Seven years ago, AM-DOCS Film Festival founder Teddy Grouya, felt that filmmakers of documentaries needed a proper festival of their own to display their diverse and wide-ranging, special subject-matter films. Accordinglt, the documentary film genre has been presented a festival format with all the trimmings.

  • 68th Berlinale, 2018

    February 15-25, Germany

    By: Angelika Jansen - Mar 01st, 2018

    In general, the 68th Berlinale may be defined as a quest of women attempting to be heard and seen. Seven of twelve prizes went to women, an astounding conclusion, especially since most of the contributions were more on the quiet side and not on the ‘#me too’ loudness. 385 films were screened and 300,000 moviegoers were counted, cold weather or not.

  • Newsies: The Broadway Musical in Movie Theaters

    Filmed Performance of Tony-Award Winning Musical

    By: Aaron Krause - Feb 21st, 2017

    In the Disney musical hit “Newsies,” which is based on a true story, the hated man is newspaper publisher Joseph Pulitzer, who jacked up the price for newsboys to buy the very papers they were to sell.

  • Scott Marshall Smith’s Potent Camera Store

    Film a Cautionary Tale About American Business

    By: Jack Lyons - Jan 20th, 2017

    Writer/director Scott Marshall Smith’s potent Indie movie “Camera Store”, is a cautionary tale about American business and its practices toward its employees. Two of America’s finest character actors star as embittered employees and clerks: Ray LaPine, played by John Larroquette) and Pinky Stueben, played by (John Rhys-Davies).

  • Revenant

    One for the Ages

    By: Charles Giuliano - Jan 14th, 2016

    What's left when a great director extracts the heart and soul of an actor through a stunning performance? Brando was never the same after Last Tango. Is there any gas in the tank for DiCaprio after being mauled and mangled in the stunning epic The Revenant?

  • Shaz Khan Star of the Feature Film Moor

    Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival

    By: Jack Lyons - Jan 04th, 2016

    One of the largest film festivals in North America is the annual Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF), now in its 27th year. This year my focus is “Award Buzz” film entries. These films have an opportunity to be considered as candidates for Oscar nominations in the category of “Best Foreign Film for 2015.

  • 2015 in the Arts

    Hiphopera, Tap, Berkshires and Beyond

    By: Charles Giuliano - Jan 02nd, 2016

    In some of the most exciting and insightful productions and performances of the year there was a notable cross pollination and invention as vernacular street cultures and indigenous art forms conflated into high art. Classic works were not just revived but reinvented from the insight out. The best works of 2016 raised the bar through risk taking and challenging audiences. These rare experiences tend to make the majority of what we experience ordinary and enervating. In an era signified by ubiquitous standing ovations what is truly worthy of special recognition?

  • Hollywood and the Media

    Spotlight and Truth

    By: Charles Giuliano - Dec 04th, 2015

    The investigative stories depicted in "Spotlight" and "Truth" although based on events that occurred not that long ago represent that last gasp of the tradition of great American journalism. Beyond entertainment these films raise issues about the ever diminished means by which we get the news.

  • At the Movies

    The Martian, Bridge of Spies, Everest

    By: Charles Giuliano - Oct 19th, 2015

    Last week we binged at the movies. This included The Martian, Bridge of Spies, and Everest. They are all likely to be award winners in various categories but overall we found Everest to be most compelling and entertaining.

  • The Passion of Joan of Arc with Live Music

    Donald Greig Devises a Score Presented at the Miller Theatre

    By: Susan Hall - Oct 17th, 2015

    Silent films of the 1920s began when the theatre lights dimmed and a conductor marched down the aisle He raised his baton, the curtains opened. On flashed the film accompanied by the orchestra. At the Miller Theatre, five singers entered the stage and as the film started, they sang.

  • Steve Jobs The Movie

    Danny Boyle and Aaron Sorkin Sort of Attached

    By: Susan Hall - Oct 08th, 2015

    We've had book and film commentary on the legendary Steve Jobs. With the director of Slum Dog Millionaire directing and West Wing's Aaron Sorkin writing, one would have hoped for more insight. Great performances by Michael Fassbinder, Kate Winslet, Jeff Daniels and Seth Rogen make the film worth seeing.

  • The Bet Directed by Finola Hughes

    End of Summer Teen Flick

    By: Jack Lyons - Sep 18th, 2015

    As “the Bet” plays itself out in this lighthearted, sort of silly but sweet rite of passage movie, Libby, Addison’s mom, also begins to date again after the death of her husband of several years ago.

  • Exorcising Black Mass

    Whitewashing the Bulgers and Southie

    By: Charles Giuliano - Sep 18th, 2015

    Under a ton of makeup to get the look Johnny Depp is pretty good as Whitey Bulger. But, lets face it, when it comes to epic crime flicks he pales by comparison to Marlon Brando as Don Corleone in the Godfather. In directing Black Mass at best Scott Cooper is a Martin Scorsese or Mario Puzo wannabe.

  • Flick by Annie Baker at Gloucester Stage

    Losing It at the Movies

    By: Charles Giuliano - Sep 01st, 2015

    There is a distinctly Massachusetts flavor to Amherst based, Pulitzer Prize winning playwright, Annie Baker's Flick at Gloucester Stage Company. In two acts and just under three hours it takes a long and slow approach to making us care about minimum wage workers at a one screen movie theater on its last legs.

  • Marilyn Monroe – Declassified

    Interview with Filmmaker Paul Davids

    By: Jack Lyons - Aug 06th, 2015

    Recently Jack Lyons met with filmmaker Paul Davids after a screening of his new documentary film Marilyn Monroe Declassified. It is due for theatrical release later this year.

  • Playwright John Guare at Barrington Stage

    Updating His Adaptation of His Girl Friday

    By: Charles Giuliano - Aug 01st, 2015

    The renowned playwright John Guare was in Pittsfield recently for the first days of rehearsal of his play His Girl Friday. It is being directed by Julianne Boyd for Barrington Stage Company. He and others in the production met with the media for a lively give and take.

  • Every Other Sunday

    Growing Up in the Dark

    By: Charles Giuliano - Jul 25th, 2015

    Before cinema or film noir on every other Sunday, the maid's day off, we went to the movies. On many levels I grew up in the dark.

  • Palm Springs International Film Festival

    Oscar Previews

    By: Jack Lyons - Jan 22nd, 2016

    “Son of Saul” is Hungary’s Official Oscar Submission and the buzz on the street says it’s a strong candidate to take home the Oscar. Actually, I’m voting for “Labyrinth of Lies” as Best Foreign Film with “Son of Saul” as the alternate.

  • Berlinale 2016

    Another Blockbuster Film Festival

    By: Angelika Jansen - Feb 22nd, 2016

    Berlin just concluded the February 11 - 21, 2016 Berlinale by presenting 434 international films and more than 300.000 tickets were sold. Perhaps for the first time, a documentary film received the most coveted Golden Bear, 'Fuocoammare,' by Gianfranco Rosi. A thread of 'the right to happiness' was woven into the selection of movies, as there were also most serious subject matters in 15 categories. Two demanded much of the audience, time wise: They were 8 and 11 hours long.

  • Breakable You Directed by Andrew Wagner

    Highlight of Film Festival

    By: Jack Lyons - Jan 19th, 2017

    “Breakable You”, co-written with Fred Parnes and smartly directed by Andrew Wagner, is a sophisticated and wryly funny film, at times, and is best described as a poignant ‘dramaedy’ that centers around the dynamic Weller family on New York’s Upper West Side.

  • Palm Springs International Film Festival

    Annual Event Since 1989

    By: Jack Lyons - Jan 19th, 2017

    In 1989, then celebrity Mayor Sonny Bono, decided that what his desert paradise city needed was a little more glitz, klieg-lights, and glamor. So he and a group of his show business pals put together a business plan, recruited a sponsor like Nortel to help pay the bills and the first Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) was born.

  • Babe at the New York Philharmonic

    Nigel Westlake's Score Performed Live

    By: Susan Hall - Dec 18th, 2016

    Babe is a tale about an unprejudiced soul and one we should surely take to heart. Children can learn to sing Jingle Bells with LaLaLa. Will one of the youngsters who was lucky enough to see the film with the NY Phil, one day fall in love with the Saint Saens Symphony and say, That’s Babe’s song?

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