Movie Review: MARY POPPINS RETURNS

MARY POPPINS RETURNS | © 2019 Walt Disney

Rating: PG Stars: Emily Blunt, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Ben Whishaw, Emily Mortimer, Colin Firth, Julie Walters, Pixie Davies, Joel Dawson, Nathanael Saleh Writer: David Magee, screen story by David Magee & Rob Marshall & John DeLuca, based on the MARY POPPINS stories by P.L. Travers Director: Rob Marshall Distributor: Walt Disney Co. Release Date: December 19, 2018 While MARY POPPINS creator P.L. Travers still probably wouldn’t be happy with the new MARY POPPINS RETURNS, the title character, as played by Emily Blunt, feels closer in spirit to Travers’s work than Julie Andrews’s interpretation in the 1964 film. This Mary Poppins is […]Read On »

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INDIAN SUMMERS: Creator Paul Rutman on the new Masterpiece series – Exclusive Interview

Jemima West as Alice Whelan and Henry Lloyd-Hughes as Ralph Whelan IN INDIAN SUMMERS | ©2015 PBS

Paul Rutman created INDIAN SUMMERS, now in its first season on PBS Sunday nights; it’s already been renewed for a second year. The epic drama, co-produced by Boston’s WGBH and England’s Channel Four, spans the years 1932 through 1945, as the British presence in India known as the Raj comes to an end. The series takes place in the small mountain resort of Simla, where working-class matron Cynthia Coffin (played by Julie Walters) has opened a hotel that caters to well-off English people escaping the summer heat in the lower climes. Rutman, an established writer in British television, has a […]Read On »

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Movie Review: PADDINGTON

PADDINGTON | © 2015 TWC-Dimension

Rating: PG Stars: Ben Whishaw (voice), Nicole Kidman, Hugh Bonneville, Sally Hawkins, Julie Walters, Peter Capaldi, Madeleine Harris, Samuel Joslin, Michael Gambon (voice), Imelda Staunton (voice) Writer: Paul King, screen story by Hamish McColl and Paul King, based on the character created by Michael Bond Director: Paul King Distributor: TWC-Dimension Release Date: January 16, 2015 PADDINGTON, based on the beloved illustrated children’s book series by Michael Bond about a young and very civilized bear from deepest Peru who comes to live in London, is the kind of movie that could have been made at almost any time in film history. […]Read On »

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Exclusive Interview: THE HOLLOW CROWN reworks Shakespeare for four new PBS films

Rory Kinnear in GREAT PERFORMANCES: THE HOLLOW CROWN - RICHARD II | ©2013 PBS/BBC

THE HOLLOW CROWN, on PBS’ GREAT PERFORMANCES beginning Friday September 20 at 9 PM and continuing for three Fridays thereafter, consists of four new films of William Shakespeare’s histories HENRY II, starring Ben Whishaw in the title role, and HENRY IV PART I, HENRY IV PART II and HENRY V, starring Jeremy Irons as Henry IV and Tom Hiddleston as Prince Hal/Henry V, with Simon Russell Beale as Falstaff. Other notable cast members include David Bradley (Walder Frey on GAME OF THRONES), Lindsay Duncan, David Morrissey (the Governor on THE WALKING DEAD), James Purefoy (of THE FOLLOWING), Patrick Stewart, David […]Read On »

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Exclusive Interview: BRAVE producer Katherine Sarafian talks Scotland, mythology and animating bears

Merida in BRAVE | ©2012 Disney Pixar

In Walt Disney Pictures/Pixar’s new animated feature film BRAVE, we are the misty and magical realm of ancient Scotland, where young Princess Merida (voiced by Scottish actress Kelly Macdonald) finds that she must fight to save her family and the kingdom when a magical spell goes awry. BRAVE producer Katherine Sarafian has been working with Pixar since the days when first TOY STORY film was in production during the 1990s. She served in a number of capacities on TOY STORY 2, A BUG’S LIFE, MONSTERS INC. and THE INCREDIBLES and produced the short film LIFTED. BRAVE is Sarafian’s first gig […]Read On »

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Movie Review: BRAVE

BRAVE movie poster | ©2012 Disney * Pixar

Rating: PG Stars (voices): Kelly Macdonald, Emma Thompson, Billy Connolly, Julie Walters, Craig Ferguson, Robbie Coltrane, Kevin McKidd Writers: Mark Andrews, Steve Purcell and Brenda Chapman & Irene Mecchi, story by Brenda Chapman Directors: Mark Andrews and Brenda Chapman, co-director Steve Purcell Distributor: Walt Disney Pictures Release Date: June 22, 2012 BRAVE, the latest release from Disney/Pixar, has a lot going for it. For starters, the screenplay by Mark Andrews, Steve Purcell and Brenda Chapman & Irene Mecchi, from Chapman’s story, has the feel of true mythology to it, even though it is original. Second, the 3D animation of humans […]Read On »

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Movie Review: HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS PART 2

HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS PART 2 poster - Harry Potter and Lord Voldemort | ©2011 Warner Bros.

Rating: PG-13 Stars: Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, Helena Bonham Carter, Robbie Coltrane, Warwick Davis, Tom Felton, Ralph Fiennes, Michael Gambon, Ciaran Hinds, John Hurt, Jason Isaacs, Matthew Lewis, Gary Oldman, Alan Rickman, Maggie Smith, Julie Walters, Bonnie Wright, William Welling, Evanna Lynch Writer: Steve Kloves, based on the novel by J.K. Rowling Director: David Yates Distributor: Warner Bros. Release Date: July 15, 2011 You can tell Warner Bros. feels they have something special on their hands with HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS PART 2 from the very beginning. It’s rare (if not unheard of) for the studio […]Read On »

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Blu-ray Review: HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX Ultimate Edition

HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX - Ultimate Edition | ©2011 Warner Bros.

Stars: Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, Helena Bonham Carter, Robbie Coltraine, Warwick Davis, Ralph Fiennes, Michael Gambon, Brednan Gleeson, Richard Griffiths, Jason Isaacs, Gary Oldman, Alan Rickman, Fiona Shaw, Maggie Smith, Imelda Staunton, David Thewlis, Emma Thompson, Julie Walters Writer: Michael Goldenberg based on the novel by J.K. Rowling Director: David Yates Distributor: Warner Home Video Suggested Retail Price: $49.99 Of all the HARRY POTTER films, I think HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF  THE PHOENIX is by far the weakest. Condensing an overly long book into this very short film proved to be a daunting task. Additionally, Michael […]Read On »

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Blu-ray Review: HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS – PART 1

HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS - Part 1 | © 2011 Warner Home Video

Stars: Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, Helena Bonham Carter, Robbie Coltrane, Warwick Davis, Ralph Fiennes, Michael Gambon, Brendan Gleeson, Richard Griffiths, John Hurt, Jason Isaacs, Alan Rickman, Fiona Shaw, Timothy Spall, Imelda Staunton, David Thewliss, Julie Walters Writer: Steve Kloves based on the novel by J.K. Rowling Director David Yates Distributor: Warner Home Video Viewers who caught HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS – PART 1 in theaters were divided into two factions – those that loved the film’s careful pacing and more character based moments and those that wanted the whole story in one slam-bang sweep. Add the […]Read On »

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