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Archive for November 26th, 2012

by Richard R.D. Finch

“All you need to start an asylum is an empty room and the right kind of people,” millionaire Alexander Bullock (Eugene Pallette) remarks to a friend near the beginning of My Man Godfrey. For the next hour and a half the movie sets out to illustrate that quip, using Bullock’s two daughters, his wife, and their social set as its prime examples. As hard as he tries, Alexander Bullock isn’t ever able to introduce any sanity into his eccentric family, but a mystery man played by William Powell is. Powell is Godfrey Smith, a homeless man living in a packing box at the city dump who is claimed by both Bullock daughters, Cornelia (Gail Patrick) and Irene (Carole Lombard), in the film’s famous opening, where the two are competing for the last item they need to win a society scavenger hunt—a real Forgotten Man. Godfrey doesn’t respond to the imperious Cornelia, but he does take an immediate liking to her sweet, slightly ditzy younger sister and allows himself to be claimed by her. Irene, elated at besting her domineering sister for once, in turn takes such a shine to Godfrey that she impulsively hires him as the new family butler. For the rest of the movie we follow along as Godfrey becomes embroiled in the antics of this nutty family that practically embodies the expression “the idle rich.” (more…)

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Two screen caps for the THE LIFE OF PI, a ravishing action/animation hybrid that all matters considered is one of the most breathtaking films of 2012.

by Sam Juliano

Turkey Day is behind us now, with the focus has shifting to gifts, decorations and greetings cards.  This is the time of the year when everything happens so quick that you only need to blink your eye and the new year has arrived.  To be sure it’s always an exciting time, especially for the film lovers and culture mavens, who are invariably treated to some of the most prominent works of the calendar year.  Just as the film fanatics fervently discuss Lincoln, Silver Linings Playbook and Anna Karenina, the focus has now shifted to The Life of Pi, Rust and Bone, The Central Park Five and Hitchcock.  Then things really accelerate with the upcoming releases of Killing Them Softly, The Central Park Five, Zero Dark Thirty, The Hobbit, Django Unchained, Hyde Park on the Hudson, Amour, and Les Miserables.  Tom Hooper’s musical, based on the beloved and long-running Broadway show, was screened for critics in New York and Los Angeles on Friday night, and the response has been rapturous.  Some key insiders are saying they wept, cheered and were bowled over, and that the film is clearly the film to beat for the Best Picture Oscar and some critics’ awards.  As one who always names this show as one of my favorites, and like so many others adores the score, I can only say I am all smiles on these early reports, though there are obviously some other films here to salivate for including the long-awaited Amour, which Allan has given a five star rating to in a still-to-be-published review.  In any event i want to thank our dear friend Dee Dee for again adorning the site’s sidebar with a lovely Thanksgiving reference point and greeting for viewers!  She has kept the holiday spirit in full force at WitD for over four years running! (more…)

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