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Film

'Something Wicked this Way Comes' Is Both Creepy and Confused

Is Ray Bradbury's classic a horror film? Well, not exactly. Is it a family film? Nah, it has too many genuine scares for the kiddies. Is it perfect for Halloween? Well, Mr. Dark is delightfully wicked...

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Film

'A Moveable Feast' in 'Midnight in Paris'

Ernest Hemingway compared Paris to a moveable feast because no matter what time it is, Paris is always the magnificent city of lights. Woody Allen expands upon Hemingway's testimony in the magical Midnight in Paris.

Film

What to Expect When You're Expecting a Vampire

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part I is a gratifying escape from reality. Those who are familiar with the books will be pleased with Director Bill Condon's attention to detail.

Film

Before There Was 'The Exorcist', There Was 'The Possession of Joel Delaney'

Once again, the film industry came in and took a perfectly creepy book and upped the sensationalism because nothing can ever be too shocking in Hollywood.

Film

Transforming the Metamorphosis

While Atanes's film comes across as somber and unintentionally funny, and the Capaldi film is bizarre and outright amusing. Both do a brilliant job of capturing the surreal, dark mood that The Metamorphosis is cocooned in.

Film

'Norwegian Wood' Is Pretty Onscreen, But Puzzling

Haruki Murakami's Norwegian Wood has been referred to as the "Japanese Catcher in the Rye", but J. D. Salinger said that his book was not actable and he would never sell the rights to Hollywood. Maybe Murakami should have listened to Salinger.

Film

'Close Encounters of the Third Kind' at 34: Still Thrilling After All These Years

What makes Close Encounters of the Third Kind stand out to this day is that it isn’t the usual UFO tale of “us vs them”, like Spielberg’s later remake of War of the Worlds; rather, it's very much a story about Earthlings.

Film

A is for Axe: The Filmic Butchering of 'The Scarlet Letter'

As is often the case with classics, what could have been a brilliantly updated film adaptation of The Scarlet Letter was consumed by the Hollywood machine that instead spits out a shallow and action-packed romp with a glossed-over ending.

Books

'Poltergeist': Home Sweet Hell

James Kahn’s version of Poltergeist is a rare example of a book written after a movie is released, which results in a riveting read.

Film

'Eclipse': A Sort of Romantic Kind of Fairytale

When I saw Eclipse, a gaggle of teenage girls behind me giggled, gasped and squealed their way through most of the film. Each time their hysteria erupted, it happened during a romantic scene.

Film

Cracking the Spine: The Lovely Bones

The author's 'heaven' is a concrete and unexpected place with"lumbering women throwing shot put and javelin"; whereas the filmmaker's interpretation changes 'heaven' to something like a garish, 3-D Hallmark card.

Film

Chéri: Out of the Boudoir

Frears and Hampton puts the viewer into Chéri in a very real and sensual manner, paying homage to Collette's luxuriant corporeal details.

Film

The Ice Storm: America Out in the Cold

Ang Lee captures the '70s on film the way Rick Moody captures the era in the book The Ice Storm. It's the midst of the sexual revolution, the Watergate scandal is erupting, and the country's social consciousness is changing.

Film

New Moon: Wherefor Art Thou Edward?

Bella and Edward's longing for each other is what makes the series so appealing. It fully encapsulates the bliss and agony of first love or any love that would make you lie down and die for the other person.

Film

Little Women: Brilliant Book, Flawed Film

A scene shows Ryder blissfully tying up the manuscript and putting a rose under the string. That's rather like what Armstrong and the screenwriters did to the film: tied it up neatly with a pretty flower.

Film

A Ghost Story of Dubious Origins

No matter the vercity of the tale, The Haunting in Connecticut has just enough creep quotient to keep me engaged, especially since I grew up a few miles from the house.

Books

The Handmaid's Tale: Not So Sci-fi

The terrifying, 'it could happen today' message of this story is best told in the Atwood's book, rather than the film version.

Film

Not to be Silenced: To Kill a Mockingbird

'To Kill a Mockingbird' is more than an enlightening tale of the racial inadequacies in the South during the Depression -- it inspired people to study law.

Film

We All End Up in Diapers: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Comparing the book to the film, it’s as if Fitzgerald laid just the foundation, and from that Roth built a multi-storied house.

Film

Let the Right One In, But Only the Right One

Lindqvist’s book and Alfredson’s film adaptation both convey a sweet, dark version of puppy love. We don’t need the American remake.

Film

Breakfast at Tiffany's: Check, Please

I hate it when a film takes a brilliant literary work and turns it into what it thinks the literary work should be.

Film

Chok(ing) Onscreen and In Print

Whether served up on the page or on the screen, this is an intimate assessment of a twisted mother/son relationship with plenty of sardonic humor and scathing satire.

Film

Woolf at the Door

Both Virginia Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway and Michael Cunningham's The Hours offer an illuminating look at the choices we make, the roles we play, and the hours that hinge our lives together.

Film

Twilight Takeover

The film is a successful adaptation of the book not only because Pattinson is so talented and dreamy, but also because Hardwicke knows a thing or two about filming adolescents.

Film

Hughes Oughta Know

The British Library bought Ted Hughes' literary archive, further inspiring film and literary speculation into his life with Sylvia Plath.

Film

Blinded by Science

While Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is a wonderful tale of a tortured man and his experiment, I’ll take Hollywood’s version of the block-headed monster any day.

Film

Bukowski: What Lies Beneath

During the rare moments when Charles Bukowski's vulnerable side are shown, they manage to break through the "dirty old man" parody of himself that he had become.

Film

He’s Lost Control

The kids who grew up in the '90s had the haunted Kurt Cobain; my generation had the tormented Ian Curtis.

Film

Rebel Rebel

The time is ripe for revisiting One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, as we're all aware that individual freedoms are still being suppressed by governments around the world.

Film

Love on the Rocks

Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?'s dark, witty banter and assessment of human malice made my brain tick and also made me glad I wasn’t married.

Film

Living the Dream: The Life Before Her Eyes

Kaisischke's grotesque images of the natural world remind me of Sylvia Plath. She is a master of highlighting the splendor and tragedy working side-by-side in everyday life.

Film

Love in the Time of Record Shops

Technology may have changed the way we obtain music, but as Nick Hornby's High Fidelity reminds us, it can never alter our love affair with the medium.

Film

The Escape Artist

The desire to escape that lives in each of us, and the consequences of acting on that desire, is what makes us care for Chris McCandless (Into the Wild), and what makes his short life such a compelling story.

Film

Standing by Stephen King

Childhood and the end of innocence are vividly portrayed in Stephen King's novella The Body, and Rob Reiner's excellent interpretation, Stand by Me.

Film

The Sins of the Sister

A director can translate a writer’s words to the screen beautifully, but he can never alter their power on the page. The book and film versions of Atonement prove this all too well.

Film

The Good Shepherd

His comic look at life in the '50s formed the foundation for a seminal Christmas 'Story'. But there is more to Jean Sheperd than little boys and BB guns.

Film

Save the Drama for Your Mama

Sons and Lovers gave author D.H. Lawrence a chance to work out all his Oedipal issues. Too bad the film adaptations have been less than enlightening.


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