Top Stories


  • Blu-ray review: 'Matilda'

    Dennis King | Published: Thu, Mar 27, 2014

    Long before “Matilda: The Musical” became a Tony Award-winning hit on Broadway, the story was a much-beloved children’s book by the great British eccentric Roald Dahl and a prickly, endearing 1996 movie adaptation by actor-director Danny DeVito. In the nearly 20 years since its release, that quirky, zippy little film – much like the story’s page and stage incarnations – has achieved a sort of cult status among young fans, as well as among grown-up admirers of Dahl’s warm, weird and wonderfully cracked body of literature.

  • Under the Radar DVD of the Week: 'Beast of the Bering Sea'

    Dennis King | Published: Tue, Mar 25, 2014

    This week, the oddest DVD to appear on release lists is: “Beast of the Bering Sea” Syfy Channel Originals have a certain dubious cache among fans of bad, cheapo horror movies (this is the outlet that gave us “Sharknado,” after all).

  • Under the Radar DVD of the Week: 'Tom Holland's Twisted Tales'

    Dennis King | Published: Mon, Mar 17, 2014

    This week, the oddest DVD to appear on release lists is: “Tom Holland’s Twisted Tales” Legendary horror director Tom Holland, creator of such latter-day horror mainstays as “Child’s Play” and “Fright Night,” tries his hand at short anthology pieces in “Tom Holland’s Twisted Tales” (due out on DVD Tuesday).

  • Anthony Mann bio looks at director’s moody contributions of film noir

    Dennis King | Published: Fri, Mar 14, 2014

               In the Technicolor old West of 1950s Hollywood, director Anthony Mann made a name for himself by pioneering a stark kind of sagebrush drama featuring deeply conflicted cowboys with loads of dark secrets in their saddlebags.

  • Under the Radar DVD of the Week: 'Lego Star Wars: The Yoda Chronicles'

    Dennis King | Published: Tue, Mar 11, 2014

    This week, the oddest DVD to appear on release lists is: “Lego Star Wars: The Yoda Chronicles” With the breakout success of “The Lego Movie,” another rendering of the little plastic block toys and a sci-fi cultural icon is now getting a boost with the release of “Lego Star Wars: The Yoda Chronicles” (due out on DVD Tuesday).

  • Vivien Leigh biography tracks a life of glamour, tragedy on stage and screen

    Dennis King | Published: Sun, Mar 9, 2014

    British actress Vivien Leigh, who died tragically in 1963 at age 53, made only 19 movies in her career, but her two most celebrated and memorable roles – for which she earned best acting Oscars – were playing iconic woman of the American South.

  • DVD review: 'The Broker's Man: Series 1'

    Dennis King | Published: Fri, Mar 7, 2014

      Before taking over on his own popular Masterpiece Mystery TV series, “Inspector Lewis,” the everyman British actor Kevin Whately spent some13 years as Detective Sergeant Robbie Lewis, the reliable, long-suffering sidekick to John Thaw’s prickly, cerebral detective in the “Inspector Morse” series.

  • Under the Radar DVD of the Week: 'Portland Expose'

    Dennis King | Published: Mon, Mar 3, 2014

    This week, the oddest DVD to appear on release lists is: “Portland Expose” Out-of-towners who know Portland only as the left-coast fantasyland depicted in Fred Armisen and Carrie Browstein’s campy, hipster spoof “Portlandia” can get a far grittier and noirish vision of the port city in “Portland Expose” (due out on DVD Tuesday).

  • Movie review: ‘Non-Stop’ is a coach-class trip to nowheresville

    Dennis King | Published: Fri, Feb 28, 2014

    Flying on commercial airlines in this post-9/11 world has become onerous drudgery, and unfortunately taking a trip with Liam Neeson and a top-flight cast in “Non-Stop” is no jaunt through the friendly skies either. This claustrophobic thriller set entirely aboard an imperiled trans-Atlantic airliner is freighted with a densely preposterous plotline, a first-class passenger list of supporting players and the always-dynamic Neeson at his crusty, taciturn, anti-hero best.

  • Oscar’s ‘In Memoriam’ montage has become a political hot potato

    Dennis King | Updated: Fri, Feb 28, 2014

    When the Oscar ceremonies air this Sunday night, a weepy few moments will be set aside to pay brief tribute to Hollywood luminaries who have died in the past year. Since 1994, a short obituary segment – usually labeled “In Memoriam” and accompanied by a sentimental song (such as the version of “Smile” performed by Celine Dion during the 2011 broadcast) – has aired each year about midway through the glitzy, self-congratulatory party.

  • ’85 Years of the Oscar’ is the ultimate, glossy yearbook for Hollywood’s annual party

    Dennis King | Updated: Thu, Feb 27, 2014

    As the old sports saw goes: You can’t tell the players without a program. And for this Sunday’s Academy Awards ceremony, the most lavish and expansive program of all is “85 Years of the Oscar” (Abbeville Press, $75), by erudite TCM host Robert Osborne.

  • Under the Radar DVD of the Week: 'Les Petits Meurtres D'Agatha Christie Set 1'

    Dennis King | Published: Mon, Feb 24, 2014

    This week, the oddest DVD to appear on release lists is: “Les Petits Meurtres D’Agatha Christie Set 1” Agatha Christie, that most British of whodunit authors, gets a dash of French savoir-faire in “Les Petits Meurtres D’Agatha Christie Set 1” (due out on DVD Tuesday).

  • Colin Farrell: On the wisdom of working with animals and children

    Dennis King | Updated: Fri, Feb 21, 2014

      NEW YORK – In “Winter’s Tale,” the lavishly romantic fairy tale adapted from Mark Helprin’s novel, star Colin Farrell soars over the snowy New York City landscape astride a winged white stallion. While those fantastical scenes were obviously thanks to the magic of computer generated special effects, Farrell, who plays an early 20th century cat burglar pursuing his true love across a century, said he did indeed spend much of the film’s on-location shooting schedule riding that white horse around the streets of the city.

  • Under the Radar DVD of the Week: 'Jean Rollin: The Vampire Films'

    Dennis King | Published: Tue, Feb 18, 2014

    This week, the oddest DVD to appear on release lists is: “Jean Rollin: The Vampire Films” Jean Rollin, who died in 2010, was an influential French film director, actor and novelist best known for his work in the “fantastique” genre, which included a sexy succession of vampire and horror movies.

  • Movie review: Magic, realism form an uneasy marriage in dreamy ‘Winter’s Tale’

    Dennis King | Published: Sat, Feb 15, 2014

      Part moody meditation on love and mortality, part epic-sized battle between the forces of darkness and light, the lovely and baldly saccharine “Winter’s Tale” is an adult fairy tale shot through a gauzy lens of Valentine’s Day dreaminess. It’s Oscar-winning screenwriter Akiva Goldsman’s first outing in the director’s chair, and his unabashedly romantic adaptation of Mark Helprin’s ambitious novel of magical realism makes a game but uneven attempt at wedding the book’s tricky physical and metaphysical properties on screen.

  • Movie review: ‘Endless Love’ floats along on an endless stream of clichés

    Dennis King | Published: Sat, Feb 15, 2014

    Feeling a bit like a recycled Valentine card, “Endless Love” presents a pretty, frilly but frayed contemporary take on the patented Romeo and Juliet saga, with a hot young cast and more than a few cloying clichés to move it along.

  • ‘Winter’s Tale’ director aiming for ‘ridiculously romantic’ adult fairy tale

    Dennis King | Published: Fri, Feb 14, 2014

    BY DENNIS KING NEW YORK – A cynic might suggest that the script for “Winter’s Tale” seems to have been written on a doily – all curious curlicues and fanciful filigrees – and that the film looks as if it were shot inside a snow globe of frosty, fantastical New York City tableaux.

  • For Colin Farrell, love scenes are just another (nice) day at the office

    Dennis King | Published: Fri, Feb 14, 2014

    BY DENNIS KING NEW YORK – “Winter’s Tale,” like most lush, dreamy romances these days, features one soft-focus love scene between buff, photogenic stars Colin Farrell and Jessica Brown Findlay. In this mystical, century-spanning love story, Farrell plays a roguish cat burglar, and Brown Findlay is a fragile, consumptive young heiress who never expected to find true love.

  • Under the Radar DVD of the Week: 'Reel Zombies'

    Dennis King | Published: Tue, Feb 11, 2014

    This week, the oddest DVD to appear on release lists is: “Reel Zombies” Zombie movies are so ubiquitous these days that it seems impossible for anyone to successfully parody them. But a pair of low-budget film fringe-dwellers gives it a decidedly moldy try with “Reel Zombies” (due out on DVD Tuesday).

  • Maureen O’Hara bio tells of fiery lass who defied Hollywood temptations

    Dennis King | Published: Mon, Feb 10, 2014

    In Hollywood’s Golden Age, she was hailed as the “Queen of Technicolor” but was said to have lived such a normal and wholesome life off screen that apparently no one ever thought it worthwhile to write a full-length biography of her career.