The movie Battleship, based on the popular board game, opens today in the U.S. In most respects, it's a typical popcorn picture — the kind of effects-laden action movie that audiences often turn into a summer blockbuster.
And while it may not be any good, it is undeniably ours — American from the water up: a Universal Studios picture about an alien invasion, crammed with special effects from Industrial Light and Magic and set largely on American warships.
Time now for a home viewing recommendation from our film critic Bob Mondello. This time Bob urges taking the plunge from the seven-and-a-half-th floor into the Criterion Collection's Blu-ray release of Being John Malkovich.
Fifty years ago, Johnny Carson became the host of TheTonight Show. During his 30 years as host, he reached a nightly audience of 15 million people and became one of the most trusted and famous men in America.
But Carson was intensely private off-screen, and very few people — including members of his own family--really knew him. Documentary filmmaker Peter Jones wanted to try and change that. Once a year, for 15 years, Jones sent Carson a letter, begging him for permission to make a documentary on his life.
When it comes to monsters on television, vampires have the market more or less cornered. Think about it: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, True Blood, The Vampire Diaries ...
Vampires' enduring popularity on TV may not be eternal, but they have been appearing on the small screen for decades. Mark Dawidziak, who's written books about vampires and teaches a class at Kent State University on their appearances in film and TV, says that part of the way vampires have remained a force in popular culture is through their evolution on TV.
Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 5:50 pm
Don Draper sure has a lot of power for a fictional character. At the end of this week's episode of Mad Men, Don dropped the needle on that copy of Revolver ("start with this," his wife Megan said as she pointed at Side B's final track) and the tape loop distortion of "Tomorrow Never Knows" started dripping through his hi-fi speakers. As Lennon sang, "You may see the meaning of within," the camera showed Don's wife and his co-workers, all caught in moments of uncertainty and transition. Don's own response to this hit of mind-expanding music? Disinterest.