Category Archive: Films and TV

Mar 02 2014

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar critiques the Best Picture nominees

Tonight is the big night for films when the 2014 Academy Awards are given out. While I love films, I hate awards shows in general and find them incredibly boring and so will not watch. I have only seen Gravity from among the nine nominees for Best Picture and I reviewed it here. I thought …

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Feb 19 2014

Documentary: Rhythm and Hues: Life After Pi

I have written before about how the visual special effects (VFX) industry in the US is in a sorry state. Even as so many major American films based their success on special effects and had spectacular box office returns, the industry that was so essential to their success was itself collapsing.

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Feb 11 2014

Seriously flawed artists: The case of Woody Allen

Matt Bors Woody Allen

Nobody’s perfect. The fact that actors and writers and other artists may be personally flawed does not usually cause a problem with appreciating their work because we have learned to (mostly) separate the work of the artist from the person of the artist, so that praise for the artistic work does not mean we like …

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Feb 09 2014

Film review: Closed Circuit (2013, no spoilers)

This film is set in London and begins with a terrorist bombing at a crowded market that kills 120 people. An immigrant from Turkey who has a wife and teenage son is immediately arrested on the basis of a tip and accused of being the mastermind of the plot.

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Feb 04 2014

Film Review: 20 Feet From Stardom (2013)

I recently watched this documentary about the anonymous vocalists who sing backup for the featured musical stars, providing harmonies and visual excitement by dancing and swaying along with the music. In the 1950s and earlier, most of the backup singers were white women who sang more sedately and tended to follow the written music score.

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Feb 03 2014

Season finale of Sherlock (no spoilers)

I watched the third and final episode of Sherlock last night. Like the others, it was entertaining and kept me engaged. It also ended with a two teasers (one major and one minor) that suggest that a fourth season is in the works. The way the major teaser was presented, like the previous episode, seemed …

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Feb 02 2014

Philip Seymour Hoffman (1967-2014)

News emerged today that actor Philip Seymour Hoffman was found dead in his apartment apparently from a drug overdose. He had a history of drug and alcohol addiction. He was just 46 years old.

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Jan 25 2014

Two good British comedies

There are two British comedy series that can be seen on Hulu and that I can recommend. One is Spy that consists of 17 half-hour episodes spread out over two seasons. The other is The Wrong Mans that consists of just six half-hour episodes.

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Jan 20 2014

Sherlock review (no spoilers)

I watched the season 3 premiere of Sherlock last night on PBS. The series is loosely based on the Conan Doyle stories updated to the modern period. It was fun. What the show lacks in plausibility it makes up in the way that the characters are drawn and portrayed. The casting of the main characters …

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Jan 19 2014

Good reviews of bad films

I like to watch films and so read a lot of film reviews since there are so many films and so little time and I need guidance in selecting what to watch. But while good reviews are the most helpful, it is the nasty ones that are the most fun to read, especially if they …

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