July 19, 2006
WORLD Little progress on cease-fire Efforts by United Nations envoys to arrange a Middle East cease-fire made little progress yesterday, as Israel bombed new targets in Lebanon, Hezbollah fired more than 100 rockets into Israel, and the civilian death toll continued to climb. pg 1a MARYLAND Tough fight ahead for Schaefer? Comptroller William Donald Schaefer's comments about women and minorities could affect his re-election, a Sun poll shows. The poll indicates he would receive support of less than a third of voters in the primary with many voters undecided.
November 10, 2005
STAFF CRITICS GIVE YOU THE LOWDOWN ON TEN TOP MOVIES, POPCORN NOT INCLUDED! Capote What It's About: New Yorker writer Truman Capote researches the murder of a Kansas farm family and gets in over his head with one of the killers. Rated: R The scoop: Forty years from now, people will still be talking about Philip Seymour Hoffman's performance the way we are still talking about In Cold Blood. Grade: A+ Chicken Little What It's About: A little chicken insists the sky is falling, and not even his own dad believes him. Rated: G The scoop: Believing traditonal animation is too passe, Disney jumps into the computer-animated fray with that hoariest of cartoon cliches, the cute animal pic. If it does nothing else, this wan effort makes Pixar's continued brilliance (from Toy Story to The Incredibles)
October 28, 2005
Therapists may take a dim view of Prime, a romantic comedy with Uma Thurman falling for a guy 15 years her junior that features some of the worst therapeutic advice ever to appear onscreen. Just about everyone else will be too busy chuckling to care. Thurman, luminous as ever, is Rafi Gardet, recently divorced and vulnerable; like every other beautiful, together woman in Hollywood, she has despaired of ever finding the right man, and figures it must be her fault. Then, against her better judgment, she starts falling for David Bloomberg (Bryan Greenberg)
March 4, 2005
Be Cool, an unawaited, years-too-late follow-up to the 1995 hit Get Shorty, proves that when "cool" evaporates all it leaves are embarrassing little puddles. John Travolta was cool in Get Shorty: He put his signature on the role of Elmore Leonard's Chili Palmer, an honorable, low-level gangster with invincible self-confidence and a soft spot for Hollywood fantasy. Travolta played him with a sparkle and finesse that got you rooting for him and grinning. Travolta made you believe that this shylock and debt collector was always smooth and collected.
May 22, 2004
Near the end of Quentin Tarantino's Kill Bill, Vol. 2, Bill (David Carradine) compares the double life of his former girlfriend/assassin (Uma Thurman) with that of Superman. Superman's mythology, Bill contends, is different from other superheroes because unlike, say, Peter Parker, who fights crime as Spider-Man to protect his everyday life, Superman was born on another planet and uses his human identity to blend in, to hide from humanity. The bespectacled Clark Kent is Superman's critique of the human race as weak and cowardly, Bill says.
April 22, 2004
I was more than a little surprised to hear that the DVD of Kill Bill Vol. 1 would precede by only three days the release of the second half of Quentin Tarantino's tribute to every grind house movie he ever loved. But since Vol. 2 turns out as promised to be simply the second half of a single movie, the reasoning may be less odd than it seems. In fact, I might suggest watching the first installment before seeing Vol. 2 at the theater to get the full effect of what is now revealed to be a true B-movie epic.