NEWS

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Upcoming Doc “Off Country” Lets Survivors and Opponents of Nuclear Testing Do the Talking

Documentary film as digital archive

Taylor Dunne and Eric Stewart’s forthcoming documentary “Off country” examines the devastating, still-lingering effects of atomic bomb testing on the communities around the White Sands missile range in New Mexico, the Nevada Test Site and the Rocky Flats Plant in Colorado, where plutonium triggers were manufactured until its 1992 shutdown (the latter facility was studied in the galling 1982 ... more >

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NILES RETROSPECTIVE: Mabel Normand gets day in the California sun

Retrospective will take place November 11-12
Normand helped Chaplin early on in his career

Over the years I’ve researched and written extensively ("Silent film star deserved to be heard," ScreenComment, 2012) on the underrated work of silent movie actress Mabel Normand, Hollywood’s first film comedienne and female director. I’m now happy to report that she is finally being recognized for her many accomplishments. During November 11-12 the Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum, located in ... more >

TRAILBLAZING WOMAN: Illeana Douglas on hosting a show on TCM and women in cinema

Musings on a changing film industry

When last year I spoke with Illeana Douglas we discussed her work highlighting the accomplishments of women behind the camera. We also talked about her involvement as executive producer of the Kino Lorber five-disc collection “Pioneers: First Women Filmmakers.” As I've discovered, Douglas is continuing her mission by hosting TCM’s annual “Trailblazing Women” series for the second year in a row. ... more >

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A conversation with recipient Kristin Fairweather about Ryan Murphy’s HALF Initiative

New mentorship program offers clear, forward-looking vision

There is always a time when the topic of Female Directors becomes pertinent. Kathryn Bigelow winning her Oscar for “The Hurt Locker” certainly raised the subject.  But that was seven years ago.  Now, Patty Jenkins’s recent “Wonder Woman” success is picking up the topic.  The problem seems to be continuing the trend.  In an effort do just that, writer/producer Ryan Murphy (“American Horror Story," ... more >

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NEWS – “Year by the sea” heading to theaters in limited release

Film was completed in 2016

“Year by the sea” is based on the New York Times best-selling memoir by Joan Anderson. It stars Karen Allen (“Raiders of the Lost Ark” and “Animal House”). Executive-produced by Tony-award winners Daryl Roth (“Kinky Boots,” “Indecent”) and Terry Schnuck (“Beautiful”), “Year” was written, directed and composed by Alexander Janko. “Year” recounts empty-nester Joan Anderson’s decision not to ... more >

Sam Shepard

Sam Shepard, giant of the stage, poet of the moving pictures, leaves us at 73

A quintessential American, a great actor, major playwright and poet, Sam Shepard is one of those human beings whose very presence uplifts and makes the world a better place. Shepard was a playwright, actor, author, screenwriter, and director. He wrote no fewer than forty-four plays and various books (short stories, novels and memoirs). In 1979 he received a Pulitzer Prize for Drama. He was ... more >

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In Dunkirk, England Wins World War II. Again.

Cooler heads prevailed
Fionn Whitehead, Harry Styles and Tom Hardy
Directed by Christopher Nolan

For "Dunkirk" Christopher Nolan cast the puppy-eyed lead singer of One Direction, Harry Styles, as a British soldier during the famed 1940 evacuation. This is entirely appropriate. I say this because the British Army fought World War II with the ferocity of a boy band. I don’t understand why the British feel such a reflex to celebrate it. Here’s a trip down the the pathway of British military ... more >