The day the clown died, Hollywood lost a serious filmmaker in Jerry Lewis.
Laugh if you wish. It would be the first laugh Mr. Lewis never earned.
When Mr. Lewis passed away Sunday in Las Vegas at age 91, comedians hailed him as a vital influence. Memorials understandably focused on his phenomenal pairings with Dean Martin and the Muscular Dystrophy Association, raising more than $1.5 billion over decades of Labor Day telethons....
The Hitman's Bodyguard is an assault tank on semi-automatic pilot, spraying jokes and bullets with only the ammo consistently hitting its targets. The irresistible teaming of Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson might be even funnier if they missed once in a while.
This movie's violence is numbing, each kill shot, power tool mangling, beer bottle stabbing and jumper cable torture session intruding on the rascal stars' charms. Director Patrick Hughes' instinct isn't to find dark humor in violence, only to graphically depict it. There's a sadistic edge to The Hitman's Bodyguard that's unbecoming to its comedy....
THE HITMAN'S BODYGUARD
Loving the trailer for The Hitman's Bodyguard (R) poking fun at quotes from reviewers prone to phrases like "It's a roller coaster ride!" for better chances to see their names in TV ads.
People quoted in this trailer would have their names in it, anyway.
"'Ryan Reynolds is extraordinarily annoying' — Samuel L. Jackson," reads one blurb....
Steven Soderbergh beats everyone to the punch in Logan Lucky, pegging a harebrained scheme to rob a redneck mecca as Ocean's 7-11. It's a throwaway line in a movie playing more like O brother, where have you been?
Returning from a four-year "retirement" no one really believed, Soderbergh eases back into action with a signature heist flick and Coen-esque flourishes; beefy jerks and Southern fried simpletons, desperate times and ridiculous measures. Logan Lucky is a hoot, a holler, a drag at times and doesn't know when to end but it's fun....
The movie world is filled with dysfunctional families meaning well while falling apart. They're typically fictional, so a true story like Jeannette Walls' The Glass Castle should feel stranger than it does.
Before her successful writing career, Walls grew up in itinerant poverty encouraged by self-destructive parents. That domestic turbulence is smoothed by director Destin Daniel Cretton into just another bumpy ride, kept interesting by an actor's moving portrayal of Walls....
THE GLASS CASTLE
Celebrities who rub elbows with former gossip columnist Jeannette Walls wouldn't have guessed this sophisticated woman grew up hardscrabble strong. That is, not until 2005, when her best selling memoir The Glass Castle was published.
Walls' parents raised four children without putting down roots anywhere, a nomadic journey leading to an Appalachian shack without utilities. All the while, her father, Rex, distracted his family from poverty by pledging to build his family the magical home Walls used to title her book, now a movie....
Steely Dan's Donald Fagen talks about his new band the Nightflyers, touring with millennials and more08/07/17 Blog
Donald Fagen's career as co-founder of Steely Dan and then four solo albums is off book, apart from music industry norms creatively and professionally.
When the music industry zigged, Steely Dan guided by Fagen and Walter Becker zagged, adding jazz to rock while subtracting concert tours for two decades, holed up in studios crafting rock classics.
Teaming with musicians one-third his age for a new band, the Nightflyers -- who come to Ruth Eckerd Hall on Wednesday (click here for details) -- rather than the usual polished suspects is just Fagen's restless soul showing....
08/07/17 Music & Concerts
Donald Fagen likes what his new band the Nightflyers brings to the table.
Sometimes he has seconds.
"It's great hanging around with 20-somethings," Fagen, 69, said in a teleconference call from upstate New York. "They know all the good places to eat. I've been eating a lot of exotic foods for me, things I don't usually do. … It's like the menus say stuff like your protein will be such and such, your carbohydrates will be such and such. I'm more of a grilled cheese guy, you know?"...
After eight books, more than 4,000 pages, nobody expects Stephen King's trans-dimensional Gunslinger saga told in barely 90 minutes.
Yet that's exactly what The Dark Tower attempts, shrinking a woolly mammoth plot to lapdog size, defying anyone considering King's literary opus unfilmable. Those people are right, from a purist's perspective.
From the impure perspective of someone who hasn't read King's series, The Dark Tower isn't half-bad. Faint praise, but this movie will take all it can get. It plays like a decent pilot for a TV series, which is reportedly what producer Ron Howard has in mind, that director Nikolaj Artel promises will be "totally canon," unlike his movie....
A GHOST STORY
David Lowery's A Ghost Story is a different sort of haunting, a quiet reverie of never letting go of people, places, anything. Some viewers may think it silly, others profound.
Oscar winner Casey Affleck and Rooney Mara play a nameless couple in Texas whose fragile marriage is detailed by long silences. The husband is killed in a car accident; his wife identifies him at the morgue....
David Lowery's A Ghost Story is a different sort of haunting, a quiet reverie of never letting go of people, places, anything. Some viewers may think it silly, others profound, but there's no other movie quite like it.
Oscar winner Casey Affleck and Rooney Mara play a nameless couple in Texas whose fragile marriage is detailed by long silences, or their expressions when silence is broken. They're undecided about whether to stay in their home or move elsewhere. Before any decision, the husband is killed in a car accident; his wife identifies him at the morgue....
By its own end credits admission, Kathryn Bigelow's Detroit is history reconstructed with incomplete information.
The worst facts are undisputed, that three black teenagers were killed by policemen at a Detroit motel during the city's 1967 rebellion against police brutality. Others were physically and emotionally tortured in the name of investigating "sniper" fire from a cap pistol....
The world's baddest Academy Award winner Charlize Theron kicks Cold War butt in Atomic Blonde (R), in a role more furious (and Furiosa) than ever. It won't win Theron another Oscar but maybe an MMA title shot.
Theron, above, plays MI6 agent Lorraine Broughton, a sexy/deadly spy assigned to extract a vital dossier from behind the Berlin Wall. Assisted by an embedded fellow agent (James McAvoy), Lorraine will stop at nothing except a sensual interlude or two with a French spy (Sofia Boutella). Ooh la la....
Beware of movies spending money selling one scene, like the Atomic Blonde poster big enough to block a restroom entry, as it has for a while at AMC Westshore 14.
The restroom is out of order. Atomic Blonde overall doesn't work, either.
The display rightly celebrates a scene in which Charlize Theron as an MI6 agent in Cold War Berlin mops up a multistory stairwell with numerous men intent on returning the favor. Director David Leitch, a stunts ace who turned Keanu Reeves into John Wick, plays the maim game well, spinning the illusion of a single unbroken shot for nearly eight minutes....
Tampa Bay's film industry isn't dead. It's just resting, staying limber with a few shoestring indies and ambitious life support.
Thanks to a tax-funded production incentives program, Pinellas County is staying in a game Florida already lost to states like Louisiana and Georgia, which have fortunes to lure movie and TV projects.
St. Petersburg-Clearwater film commissioner Tony Armer has petty cash by comparison: $500,000 annually drawn from tourist development tax dollars, also known as "bed taxes."...