Remember When Movies Were Good?

Probably 15 minutes or so into one of the latest Netflix blockbusters, a satirical hammer to the skull about disasters that human beings so blithely and comically ignore -- ha! climate change, ha! silly politicians, ha! the pitfalls of sudden fame, ha! a comet destroying Earth, ha! we're such dunderheads -- I knew that we… Continue reading Remember When Movies Were Good?

More Perfect

At one point late in the musical "Hamilton," Lin-Manuel Miranda's title character stands center stage, utterly broken. Tragedy, brought on by his hubris and weakness, has overwhelmed him. He is stripped of his vanity, of his pride, of his strength. The moment, the song, is the most poignant and human in the entire 11-time Tony… Continue reading More Perfect

Movietime: Jojo Rabbit

Sometimes these things come out of nowhere, don't they? A killer movie. An awesome song. A rousing book. A good joke. When we don't see them coming, they can pack a wallop, you know? When we don't see them coming, we don't have expectations. No "spoilers" to sidestep. No critics to listen to. I had… Continue reading Movietime: Jojo Rabbit

Movietime: La La Land

My fondness for movie musicals can be traced back to two I saw during my kidhood: "The Music Man," with Robert Preston and Shirley Jones, and "Bye Bye Birdie," with Ann-Margret and Ann-Margret. Let me put this on the table right now: "Bye Bye Birdie" came out in 1963, which predates my awareness of film… Continue reading Movietime: La La Land

Movietime: Four Friends

In the final scene of Four Friends, a 1981 coming-of-age comedy-drama-whacko film about four working-class teens in the '60s, the title characters are gathered around a beach fire on the Lake Michigan shore. It's several years after high school.  The half-decade or so since already has taken a toll on the now 20somethings in horrible,… Continue reading Movietime: Four Friends