Friday, January 19, 2018

R.I.P. Dorothy Malone (1925-2018)

Dorothy Malone
On January 19, 2018, actress Dorothy Malone passed away at the age of 92 in Dallas, Texas. As one of the final living actresses from the Golden Age of Hollywood, she was known for her work in films such as Written on the Wind, for which she would win an Oscar. Even beyond that, she would receive acclaim for her work on the TV series as the lead on Peyton Place, for  which she was continually involved with over the decades. With a career spanning almost 50 years, sh has managed to turn in a lot of compelling and versatile roles over the years, including a supporting role in The Big Sleep. While she may not be the most recognizable name, she definitely produced an underrated body of work worthy of more respect. It's an impressive body of work, which will entertain generations to come.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

A Ranking of the Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg Collaborations (Updated)

Left to right: Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks
Note: Updated with a ranking for The Post, originally published 10/19/15

There are few actor-director collaborations throughout history that spark enthusiasm and anticipation almost every time out. In the 1940's, the promise of James Stewart and Frank Capra meant a new Americana classic. In the 1970's, the promise of Robert De Niro and Martin Scorsese meant a new gritty New York drama. Over the past 15 years, there have been few names as ubiquitous with this anticipation than Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg; the two giants of 80's and 90's cinema that surprisingly compliment each other by creating a blend of action and drama that is unsurpassed. With this past weekend's Bridge of Spies, they marked their fourth collaboration together, and it was pretty great. Have you seen them all? Here's a ranking of the four films from best to worst, including why they work.

Review: "The Post" Romanticizes the Value of Journalism to Its Full Potential

Scene from The Post
In 2017, the term "fake news" defined a crisis of journalistic integrity. Regardless of its actual merit, it lead to a rising concern of who could be trusted within the media. After all, these are the people telling millions of people the important events as they happen. With director Steven Spielberg's The Post, it's the heart of the conversation at The Washington Post prepares to publish the infamous Pentagon Papers. It's a film that asks the question as to who could be trusted to deliver the news, and the importance of reporting the stories honestly. It may be at times a conventional and polished look at the world of journalism, but its most triumphant moments are defined by hard work and the knowledge that truth prevailed. It's a message that seems as timely now as it did 45 years ago, making The Post into an even more prescient period piece.

A24 A-to-Z: #24. "The End of the Tour" (2015)

Scene from The End of the Tour
In case you didn't know, A24 is one of the great purveyors of modern cinema. Since 2013, the studio has found a way to innovate independent cinema by turning each release into an event. As a result, A24 A-to-Z will be an ongoing series that looks at every release from the studio by analyzing its production history, release, criticisms, and any awards attention that it might've received. Join me on a quest to explore the modern heroes of cinema by exploring every hit and miss that comes with that magnificent logo. They may not all be great, but they more than make A24 what it is and what it will hopefully continue to be for ears to come.