October 5, 2012 |
In the it-came-from-Sundance comedy "The Oranges," an affair tears apart two knit-together New Jersey families. The affair is certainly scandalous. Some might also find it utterly preposterous. I sure did, and as a result, felt the movie labored under credibility problems beyond the reach of its top-notch cast. Hugh Laurie and Catherine Keener are David and Paige Walling, long-marrieds in a powerful (though unexplained) lull - he's been spending a lot of nights on the couch lately.
September 26, 2012
* BEN AND KATE. 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, Fox 29. * THE MINDY PROJECT. 9:30 p.m. Tuesday, Fox 29. * VEGAS. 10 p.m. Tuesday, CBS 3. FOX GOES on a charm offensive Tuesday, rolling out two new episodes of its sophomore "New Girl" to welcome two new comedies to its lineup. You don't need me (or Siri) to tell you that Zooey Deschanel can sell anything - she's the fabric of our lives. But even someone who's mildly Zooey-challenged (hey, we exist) might cotton to "Ben and Kate" and "The Mindy Project," which together with "Raising Hope," returning next week, add another strong comedy block to a season not exactly short on them.
September 25, 2012 |
It was a volatile night of surprises and rectifications at the 64th Primetime Emmy Awards Sunday night. Homeland , a twisty, high-stakes story of contemporary treason, was the big winner, ending Mad Men 's four-year run as king of television drama. Damian Lewis and Claire Danes, Homeland 's leads, reinforced the upset by sweeping the top acting honors for the drama category. Danes' win had been widely predicted but Lewis, a British actor who first gained attention on American TV as the hero of HBO's Band of Brothers , had been almost completely overlooked in a field that included Breaking Bad 's Bryan Cranston and Downton Abbey 's Hugh Bonneville.
September 18, 2012 |
TORONTO - It's been a long time since Woody Allen acted in a film he didn't direct. It's probably even longer - as in never - since he's played a pimp. The 76-year-old will do just that in "Fading Gigolo," a movie conceived and written by John Turturro. Turturro will direct and - of course - play the hooker. The johns? Those would be Sofia Vergara, Vanessa Paradis and Sharon Stone. There were plenty of highly touted Hollywood movies at the Toronto International Film Festival. But somewhat below the radar were a number of projects, such as "Fading Gigolo," that are seeking attention within the industry as their principals talk them up to distributors.
September 14, 2012
British filmmaker Stanley Long, whose cheap-and-cheerful soft-core romps led him to be dubbed the "king of sexploitation," has died at age 78. A producer, director, and cinematographer, Mr. Long created movies with titles like Nudist Memories and The Wife Swappers before scoring his biggest success with Adventures of a Taxi Driver and other 1970s sex comedies. The mix of bawdy humor and nudity mad Adventures a hit. The film was sold to 36 countries and spawned two sequels.
September 7, 2012 |
Full seasons of several TV shows hit DVD this week, including 2 Broke Girls . 2 Broke Girls, The Complete First Season , Grade B-minus: Although the series fell into some comedy ruts in the final episodes of the first season, there are still enough laughs on the menu for this show about two waitresses from opposite sides of the track who work and live together. Beth Behrs continues to play the comedy way over the top. And the writers have gotten a little lazy with the street-tough character played by Kat Dennings, who has gone from telling jokes about dealing with a hard life to those of a sexual nature.
August 24, 2012 |
This story has been clarified. NO ONE ever said it was easy cracking a witty, well-timed joke, the kind that can make a roomful of mildly inebriated people laugh, really laugh. Proof of this fact can be found at the annual Stu Bykofsky's Candidates' Comedy Night, where pols take a break from their sometimes unintentionally funny day jobs to try - emphasis here on try - to crack wise for a good cause. The event, now in its 22nd year, has raised about $475,000 for Variety, The Children's Charity, which serves children living with disabilities in the Delaware Valley.
August 22, 2012 |
LOS ANGELES - Phyllis Diller, 95, the housewife turned humorist who aimed some of her sharpest barbs at herself, punctuating her jokes with her trademark cackle, died Monday morning in her Los Angeles home. "She died peacefully in her sleep and with a smile on her face," her longtime manager, Milton Suchin, told the Associated Press. Ms. Diller, who suffered a near-fatal heart attack in 1999, was found by her son, Perry Diller. The cause of her death has not been released. She was a staple of nightclubs and television from the 1950s - when female comics were rare indeed - until her retirement in 2002.
August 3, 2012 |
The Babymakers is the kind of comedy that makes you appreciate Judd Apatow all the more. This is what happens when emotion and character are sacrificed for jokes, when set pieces are preferred over narrative, when a movie is just a collection of so-so gags. The Babymakers isn't exactly an official Broken Lizard comedy ( Super Troopers , Beerfest ), but it bears the comedy troupe's hallmarks of goofy gratuity and good-natured slapstick. It's directed by the group's Jay Chadrasekhar (he also appears as a former Indian mobster)
July 30, 2012 |
Zoe Kazan woke up one morning with an idea. "I quickly got down as much as I could - five pages or so," she recalls. And then she showed it to her boyfriend, Paul Dano . The two actors live together in Brooklyn. "Paul said, 'You're writing this for us, right?' "And it hadn't occurred to me," she says, "because these characters felt so real that I was just concentrating on them. But when he said that, I thought, Yeah, obviously I am. So I wrote the rest of the screenplay with us in mind.