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Monday, Aug 12, 2013
At some point, some theater will acquiesce and open up an "all access" venue where you can do anything you want short of sexual liaisons with your partner and we will then see how much of a demand there is for such an outlet.

You’ve seen them and if you haven’t you’re damned lucky. If, in fact, you really have never experienced it, head on over to YouTube and type in the name of your favorite band. Then add the word “live” to the search bar and see what comes up. There they are, dozens upon dozens of clips featuring your beloved pop/rock/country combo, image jittering and jumpy while the distorted noise pouring from your speakers reminds you that, even with the convenience factor and ease of use, a cellphone still has a long way to go to be a really reliable portable video camera. It is, however, the new go-to accessory for anyone who believes in the democratization of art, who doesn’t know the word “bootleg” or the decades of artistic angst over the illegal capturing of a concert or song.


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Thursday, Aug 1, 2013
What was the first film to debut on over 1,500 screens simultaneously? Well, it wasn't some specious fish story, that's for sure.

In response to a recent New York Times article asking that film fans stop blaming Jaws for what is now seen as the annual unveiling of increasingly superficial popcorn season fare, we present a reasoned response. It’s not Steven Spielberg’s fault. Tom Laughlin and his Billy Jack character are gleeful guilty parties. Don’t think so? Read on…


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Wednesday, Jul 17, 2013
Turbo is borderline racist. No, it doesn't actually come out and call any of its minority characters by recognized hate crime names, but it sure does use stereotypes as a shortcut to any real character development.

It seems innocuous enough—the story of a little snail who dreams of winning the Indianapolis 500—and the execution has all the bedazzling bright lights of a post-Pixar production. Indeed, Turbo has a lot going for it, especially when you consider that it follows in the footsteps of lesser family films like Ice Age (and its various sequels), Madagascar (same on the series) and any other ancillary CG knock off you can name. But there is a bigger problem brewing with this soon to be sensation (it’s an animated movie in the middle of Summer - it would have to suck slug warts not to make a bunch of money), a problem parents might not recognize initially, but should make them approach this latest electronic babysitter with a giant sized salt shaker and a few lessons on intolerance.


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Monday, Jul 8, 2013
Films fail for a number of reasons. Trying to repeat the unrepeatable is one of them.

You can’t catch lightning in a bottle, no matter what elementary school history says about Benjamin Franklin, a kite, and a thunderstorm. The same applies to movies. It’s impossible to repeat a billion dollar success, even when you bring back all the pieces that made the original effort such a hit. Indeed, the various situations and circumstances that lead to such a triumph can never be wholly recreated, and even if they could be, time and temperament also play a part in audiences’ expectations and willingness to part with their pocket money. When The Blair Witch Project played its “is it real?” genre card in combination with its then original found footage format, it made millions. Since then, every Tom, Dick, and Hack Harry has tried to repeat its phenom status, to little legitimate result.


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Wednesday, Jun 26, 2013
Richard Matheson was, like his peers Ray Bradbury and Rod Serling, introduced an entire generation to the joys of genre fiction and film.

Don’t take this the wrong way, as it is said with the greatest respect and a longtime sense of readership and loyalty, but Richard Matheson is a gateway artist. You know the kind, a person of high skill and immeasurable influence who introduces people to a particular path that is easily ascribed to them, yet capable of complementing such onward motion. Like Ray Bradbury, or in recent times, Stephen King, Matheson introduced entire generations to the outer limits of the sci-fi and horror genres. A prolific writer, he penned several books, dozens of short stories, and even the occasional screenplay. But his biggest impact may be as a founding father to television’s neophyte attempts at the unusual and unexplained.


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