| Feb 13, 2013
| 3:25 PM
This Friday at 4 p.m. at the Abraham Lincoln Book Shop, screenwriter and playwright Tony Kushner will pay a visit to one of his favorite Chicago haunts.
In the spirit of the movie “Lincoln,” which Kushner wrote and which revels in the...
| Feb 15, 2013
| 9:39 AM
A modest proposal: Movies exploring some aspect of American history, such as “Argo,” “Lincoln” and “Zero Dark Thirty,” should leave off the “based on a true story” or “inspired by true events”...
| Feb 20, 2013
For context about predictions of major entertainment events, Duff Goldman from “Ace of Cakes” correctly predicted the result of this year’s Super Bowl. NFL experts did not.
Likewise, making Oscar predictions can be a bit ridiculous, as...
| Feb 22, 2013
| 9:30 PM
In 1945 Raymond Chandler wrote a screed against Hollywood, and Hollywood screenwriting, for the Atlantic Monthly. "An industry with such vast resources and such magic techniques should not become dull so soon," said the man who later characterized his...
| Jan 10, 2013
| 12:59 PM
With a conspicuous diss of Kathryn Bigelow, the un-nominated director of “Zero Dark Thirty,” the Academy Awards nominations were announced Thursday morning.
“Zero Dark Thirty” was one of nine films given the best picture...
| Feb 25, 2013
| 5:07 AM
Last night's Oscars were like an emotional roller-coaster at a terrible amusement park--beginning wth Seth MacFarlane's as-bad-as-feared monologue, the show rarely rose above painful and hit few peaks. Allow us to relive some of the night's best and worst...
| Feb 26, 2013
| 7:28 AM
Los Angeles looks lush.
But as often noted, it is actually an arid wasteland where nothing but artifice and self-interest sprouts naturally. That's the cynical, archetypal reading. For instance, two thirds of the way into Nathanael West's cynical,...
| Jan 11, 2013
| 8:30 AM
Last month after a screening, even as the lights came up in the theater, I could feel "Zero Dark Thirty" fading, its images and impact already softening in my head. No, no, wait: not fading — mingling. If our cultural experiences rub shoulders at...
| May 15, 2013
| 10:05 AM
“We’re always sitting in personal private judgment of the films we see,” Steven Spielberg said Wednesday, in Wednesday’s Cannes Film Festival press conference introducing this year’s nine-person jury headed by Spielberg....
| May 15, 2013
| 1:43 PM
Predictability and the arts-and-entertainment world have an uneasy relationship.
Predictability is a given — like the mouthfeel of a Big Mac — when it comes to, say, the punch lines on "Two and a Half Men" or the beats of your average...
| Jan 16, 2013
| 2:23 PM
Abraham Lincoln has been given many titles over the years: Rail Splitter, Great Emancipator, even, to the detriment of the undead, Vampire Hunter.
Some of these have more historical credibility than others.
But one that he's earned without question,...