The Grand Budapest Hotel
As much as "The Grand Budapest Hotel" takes on the aspect of a cinematic confection, it does so to grapple with the very raw and,…
Donald Liebenson is a Chicago-based film critic, entertainment writer and DVD reviewer. He has been published in The Chicago Tribune, The Chicago Sun-Times, Printer's Row Journal, Los Angeles Times, Movieline and Entertainment Weekly. He also contributed to VideoHound's Cult Flicks & Trash Pics and Sci-Fi Experience; Your Quantum Guide to the Video Universe, and The International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers, Volume 3: Actors and Actresses.
Cohen Media Group has made a name for itself as a boutique DVD and Blu-ray label, bringing overlooked and under-appreciated works of cinema to new audiences.
Director Joe Dante talks about his sideline running the Trailers from Hell website, which showcases the much-maligned film preview.
Donald Liebenson picks his favorite piece of Roger's writing.
An interview with the author of a
Footage from "The Day the Clown Cried," an unfinished Holocaust film Jerry Lewis attempted to make, is seeing the light of day. Is that a good thing?
Hitchcock's silent films have been lovingly restored, and they're touring selected cities. If you're anywhere near one of these cities, it's worth the trip to see as many as you can.
Cybill Shepherd recalls working on Peter Bogdanovich's "At Long Last Love" and the critical drubbing she in particular took in the press.
As a companion piece to our reassessment of "At Long Last Love," Peter Bogdanovich recalls the film's orgins, its forgotten pleasures, and the studio-mandated tinkering that turned it into a box office bomb. He also recalls turning down an offer of help from Gene Kelly, casting Burt Reynolds, and a remarkable encounter with Roger Ebert.
"Paul Williams Still Alive" (87 minutes) will be available on VOD October 16th via (Comcast, Time Warner, Cox, Bright House, among other cable providers), iTunes, VUDU, YouTube, Amazon, Sony (Playstation), Microsoft (Zune, Xbox), Blockbuster, AT&T, DirecTV, DISH.
by Donald Liebenson
In begrudgingly recommending "Paul Williams Still Alive" to his legion of fans, I am reminded of a Rolling Stone magazine review of Janis Joplin's first solo album, "I Got Dem Ol' Kozmic Blues Again Mama!" Janis never sounded better, the reviewer said, but to enjoy her, you had to be able to tune out her backup band. A similar caveat is necessary here. Enjoyment of "Still Alive" will depend on your tolerance of writer-director Stephen Kessler, who takes Williams' joke at one point that the documentary could become the "Paulie and Steve Show" as a carte blanche invitation to intrude on the proceedings.
"Guilty Pleasures" (60 min.) premieres on the PBS series P. O.V. on Thursday, July 12 (check your local listings). The DVD is available for pre-order on the PBS website. It will stream on the POV's website July 13-Aug. 12.
by Donald Liebenson
"Guilty Pleasures." A documentary. About romance novels. She didn't watch documentaries. She didn't read romance novels. When she agreed to join him for what he called "movie night" ("I'll show you something you've never seen," he had said lasciviously), this is not what she signed up for. Her inner goddess yearned for a shirtless Ryan Gosling.
"Here," she offered, unsnapping "Crazy Stupid Love" from its DVD case. Suddenly, like a coiled snake, he lunged, grabbed the disc from her trembling hand and flung it against the wall, sending it spinning, spinning.