After nearly 20 years of non-involvement in filmmaking, last month I enthusiastically un-retired and worked (really worked!) on A Posthumous Woman, starring Lena Olin and Rosanna Arquette.
Written/directed by my son, Zachary, and his fiancée, Magdalena Zyzak, and filmed at a remote location in the mountains above Silicon Valley, it is Continue reading “A Posthumous Woman”
The following, in Shonnie Brown’s “Neighbors” column, appeared in The Healdsburg Tribune, our local weekly, on February 9, 2012. [Most of the images were not in the original.]
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Ann, born and raised in Casper, Wyoming, has the dubious distinction of attending high school with both Dick and Lynne Cheney and participating in student government with Dick. Dick, who Ann recalls as being “good looking” back then, wrote “I’ll be your friend forever” in Ann’s yearbook.
Ann attended a Catholic college in Denver and then got married — resulting in a breakup and three kids. She returned to college, putting herself through law school, and then became a New Jersey prosecutor. She moved to the Bay Area in 1984 and Continue reading “Two Lives in a Small Town”
In the October 28, 2010, issue of The New York Review of Books, Richard Bernstein reviews Charlie Chan: The Untold Story of the Honorable Detective and his Rendezvous with American History by Yunte Huang.
As a child of the first television generation—I was six when we got ours in 1950—I devoured Laurel and Hardy, The Bowery Boys/East Side Kids, westerns, World War II movies, and especially Charlie Chan.
This was a world before the civil rights movement. But there were stirrings. South Pacific opened in New York in 1949, addressing racial prejudice as a main theme. But contrary to Continue reading “Charlie Chan: Chinaman or Chinese Man”
On a balmy Saturday morning in late-1978, two 30-something brothers boarded a Pacific Southwest Airlines flight in Los Angeles. As they walked up the outdoor stairway into the PSA jet, the two men looked suspiciously like Arab terrorists during a time when Arab terrorism was non-existent. They were traveling under their real names, but to almost any observer they could have been Ali Balak Qatlar and Satif Luwi Qatlar. The former looked deranged, the latter somewhat simple.
Their destination was Oakland, where they would be met by their widowed 61-year old mother. She had decided Continue reading “Sheiks on a Plane”
Hundreds of millions of people will watch Avatar. They will walk out with an overwhelming neuronal experience, some of it very bad…and I suspect James Cameron is unaware of what he has done. This is not about the film’s B-movie plot; I railed about that here.
Once the eye candy is consumed—and it is uniquely delicious—a residual trace will be left in the wiring of those multimillions who sat down to be entertained, but were unconsciously lulled into the comfort of Cameron’s non-reality. I am not referring to his alien worlds. It is the triumph of the little man over the futuristic military-industrial juggernaut that poisons.
While Cameron is over-stimulating audiences with the endorphin rush Continue reading “Avatar: Beautiful and Insidious”
What a movie! I could not find a single negative review. Everyone thinks this is a fantastic film in every regard.
Avatar—no doubt about it— takes filmmaking to new heights. The visuals are without parallel, and it is worth the ticket for the unprecendented, 3-D eye experience alone. But the story…
Continue reading “Avatar: A Different Review”