George Lucas may be the only moviemaking billionaire I have ever met (if only briefly), at a college campus in Pennsylvania. I happened to be lecturing there, and Francis Ford Coppola was shooting The Rain People (1969). Mr. Lucas just seemed to be hanging around as an apprentice to Mr. Coppola, his quiet, shy manner Read More
The star system for rating movie quality is predicated on the idea that every film possesses at least some merit. Showgirls has Gina Gershon channeling Tura Satana; Shakes the Clown, the ineffable Bobcat Goldthwaite; even Tarzan and the Lost City features a more or less constantly shirtless Casper Van Dien. But there is a greater Read More
After the Academy Awards, Hollywood usually takes a little hiatus until summer, when the studios roll out a weekly parade of stadium-fillers. But in recent years, it’s become difficult to pinpoint when spring ends and summer begins-and 2005 proves to be no exception.
In early March, Michael Eisner’s kid Breck Eisner, along with Paramount Pictures, Read More
Does America have an empire on its hands? In the years since Sept. 11, that’s easily the most vigorous debate among American writers and intellectuals. It used to be that only leftist ideologues accused American foreign policy of being “imperialist,” but as conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer argued in The New York Times, “People are coming Read More
May the Force Be With You, Etc.
Darth Vader is still Luke Skywalker’s father; Yoda’s still a puppet (and green); the rebels still win and the Empire still loses. None of this was guaranteed. After all, George Lucas is constantly messing around with his original Star Wars trilogy, and with each special edition or re-release, Read More
Freedom Is Slavery!
There’s almost nothing in THX 1138 , George Lucas’ film debut, that anticipates the shaggy, freewheeling goofiness of the first Star Wars . There’s no gee-whiz, and hardly any whiz-bang. It’s sci-fi, sure, but mostly of the “Soylent Green is people!” school of sci-fi, all bleak humor and bad news; needless to Read More
Star Wars: Episode III-The Tsuris of Binks
Reviewed exclusively by Greedofreak77
Last Tuesday, May 7, at an undisclosed location on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, this correspondent was summoned by a Lucasfilm executive to see a classified, first-ever screening of the long-anticipated, eagerly awaited Star Wars: Episode III-The Tsuris of Binks , not Read More
Hold on to your No-Doz: Another Star Wars is here. Episode II-Attack of the Clones is as exciting as a rancid Yoo-Hoo. These horrors don’t go away; they just keep coming back, like penicillin-resistant viruses. This $120 million installment (cheap by series standards) looks and sounds like the four that came before, except that it’s Read More
The June issue of Premiere proudly proclaims on its cover: “Sizzling Summer Preview/ The Real Lowdown on All the Hottest Movies.” Inside the magazine under the heading of ” Premiere ‘s Ultimate Summer Movie Preview” was a Top 10 list of movies that would “rule the Box-Office galaxy.” No. 1 was, of course, Star Wars: Read More
Roger Michell’s Notting Hill , from a screenplay by Richard Curtis, turns out to be too wondrously charming and funny as romantic entertainment to be relegated to the role of a strategic adult counter-programming entry in the face of the anticipated child-cult box-office tornado of George Lucas’ ludicrously overhyped Star Wars: Episode I-The Phantom Menace Read More