To go on this ride with Peter Jackson is to be given the gift of another, similar-but-different journey told by the man who does it better than anyone. For sheer craft, for the meticulous, artful attention to every aspect of production (what David Thomson calls, in slightly different context, "the whole equation"), this is a … Continue reading THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY


New York City today is a thriving metropolis of culture, art, politics and commerce. Flashback to 1989 and you will see a totally different city. Plagued by crime, poverty, drugs and fear, New York of that era was a truly frightening place. Race riots, crime sprees, crack cocaine all contributed to its image. It was … Continue reading THE CENTRAL PARK FIVE


One reviewer (I think it was Alonso Duralde) called this a screwball comedy with actual screwballs! I can't do any better than that. David O. Russell's follow up to THE FIGHTER is a feel bad/feel good movie. Bradley Cooper is Pat, a former substitute teacher who walked in on his wife while she was showering … Continue reading SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK


Melodrama that wants to be more. This production at the Mark Taper Forum is about a dysfunctional family with a dark secret -- seriously, another one of those. The drawn-out battle at the heart of Jon Robin Baitz's play pits an aggressively liberal daughter's perceived right to write "honestly" in the pages of her about-to-be-published … Continue reading OTHER DESERT CITIES


Awesome. 28 years after the original (SILENT NIGHT, DEADLY NIGHT), this remake takes the slasher film to new heights of gory delight. Fans of the genre will be coughing up blood with rapturous amusement, whether its a small child (made nasty enough to want dead) frothing out her guts, a topless model fruitlessly pleading to … Continue reading SILENT NIGHT