Slings & Arrows

I’m not done yet with the three seasons of the Canadian comedy Slings & Arrows (set for release on DVD in early February), but I am ready to call it one of the best TV comedies ever. This look at the all-round ego-fest that is the fictional New Burbage Theatre Festival combines the best of [...]

Lost “Sheep”

On my Netflix queue, the new DVD of the long-unavailable, mired-in-music-rights-disputes Killer of Sheep has apparently slipped into “Very Long Wait” status. WTF?

I’m so glad I’ve got TCM in my crib. The greatest non-porno, non-sports cable channel ever will air Killer of Sheep twice (as part of a Charles Burnett festival) on Mon., Jan. 21. [...]

“It might be malig-nant”: When good actors pretend to be crappy ones

The breakout performance in last spring’s little-seen, wildly funny indie movie The TV Set belongs not to its star, recent Golden Globe winner David Duchovny (although in The TV Set, he’s pitch-perfect as a frustrated Hollywood scriptwriter), but to an unknown actor named Fran Kranz.

Loosely based on writer/director Jake Kasdan’s own experiences in the TV [...]

Cast of Thousands

The locations, the thousands and thousands of extras, the boredom. Anthony Mann’s 1961 epic El Cid (which finally came out on DVD this month) doesn’t lack for widescreen shots of mounted warriors posed against rock-strewn plains topped by turreted castles. But the plot, stretching over some unspecified length of the life of medieval Spanish hero [...]

El Cid at Last

One of the great sweeping epics (epics are always sweeping; must be the sand) finally makes it onto DVD. El Cid, the 1961 tale of 11th-century conquest starring Charlton Heston and Sophia Loren, just arrived in the mail. This boxed set delivers the goods, complete with a “making of” documentary, an introduction from Martin Scorsese, [...]


Netflix and Apple have both dropped lines into the online movie rental market with two new products, both of which are kind of exciting, but also blow in their own special ways. Netflix’s offering is the simpler of the two—unlimited free rentals to all subscribers on or above its second-tier, $8.99/month plan. Sounds great, [...]

Screen Hacks

Suddenly, being an investigate reporter is the hot new cinema occupation. Halle Berry plays a star investigative reporter at a vague New York tabloid in Perfect Stranger. In the straight-to-DVD Rise: Blood Hunter, Lucy Liu writes exposés for the LA Weekly (whose building serves for one location shot). Her latest triumph for the alternative press, [...]