The very genre of comedy owes an insurmountable debt of gratitude to many of its unsung screenwriters who worked hard to give us an uncontrollable case of the sillies with the timeless gems of yesteryear. Such an arrears almost doubles when it comes to crafting a truly genuine piece of “the funny” during a time of worldwide apprehension – such as war. While the patriotic men and women of the United States were certainly in need of a good laugh, such a thing wasn’t always at their beck and call. Sure, on one hand, you had Bud Abbott and Lou Costello busily selling billions of dollars in War Bonds via their coast-to-coast tours, USO shows, and wonderful World War II-era musical comedies – all of which was in the name of Uncle Sam. Read the rest of this entry »
Posts Tagged ‘mystery’
Tags: Cinema Sentries, Comedy, Fox Cinema Archives, ghosts, mystery
Tags: blogcritics, Blu-ray, Comedy, HBO, Jason Schwartzman, mystery, Ted Danson, Zach Galifianakis
Blu-ray Review: Bored to Death – The Complete Third Season
Article first published as Blu-ray Review: Bored to Death – The Complete Third Season on Blogcritics.
Unless you possess an IQ equivalent to the shoe size of a sasquatch, it can be incredibly easy to find yourself losing interest with the shows we see on television. Especially with those abominable airwave creations network executives seem to think you will find some sort of thrill in viewing. It should go without saying that anyone who feels the urge to check out the weekly exploits of teenage mothers or life forms known as Kardashians has a significantly low regard for all things remotely intriguing in life to begin with. But what happens when even that is insufficient to keep you adrift in this lonely, lonely world satiated with adroitly weird characters? (more…)
Tags: blogcritics, courtroom drama, James Stewart, mystery, primetime, Strother Martin, TV
DVD Review: Hawkins – The Complete TV Movie Collection
Article first published as DVD Review: Hawkins – The Complete TV Movie Collection on Blogcritics.
There’s an old saying I just made up that goes: “A good idea is only one network executive away from becoming a disaster.” In the early ’70s, the folks in good ol’ Hollywood were highly eager to keep audiences glued to small screens and big ones alike, for fear of losing ‘em altogether to the powers of books or the great out of doors. Police procedurals and courtroom dramas had been hitting airwaves since the very inception of television itself, so TV shows like Hawaii Five-O and Columbo were not only commonplace, but also extremely fashionable with couch potatoes near and far. (more…)
Tags: BBC, blogcritics, Kenneth Branagh, mystery, Thriller
DVD Review: Wallander – Series 3
Article first published as DVD Review: Wallander – Series 3 on Blogcritics.
A few years back, I checked out the first series of Kenneth Branagh’s take on the popular Swedish character, Wallander on DVD. In a nutshell, I was smitten by it — which is quite a feat indeed, considering I wasn’t a big Branagh fan to begin with. The introductory BBC adaptation lured me in like a hungry fish in a cold dark sea, and the promise of more feature-length episodes along the same caliber had me praying the subsequent contributions wouldn’t do that which so many American shows tend to do so early on in their often-limited lifespan and jump the shark real quick like. (more…)
Tags: BBC, blogcritics, Drama, mystery, Thriller, TV
DVD Review: Dalziel and Pascoe – Season 6
Article first published as DVD Review: Dalziel and Pascoe – Season 6 on Blogcritics.
There are those who say that opposites attract. In the case of the lead characters in the British mystery series Dalziel and Pascoe, there isn’t any sort of sexual magnetism goin’ on here (thank God), but there is a heap of chemistry. And that’s because Detective Superintendent Andy Dalziel (Warren Clarke) and Detective Inspector Peter Pascoe (Colin Buchanan) are so completely different in their mannerisms — as well as their take on life — that they manage to get along quite well. Well, on the job, that is. But what happens when these two fellows have to pull The Odd Couple routine in Dalziel and Pascoe: Season 6? (more…)
Tags: A&E, bad, blogcritics, murder, mystery, police procedural, television
DVD Review: The Glades – The Complete Second Season
Article first published as DVD Review: The Glades – The Complete Second Season on Blogcritics.
“Turn it off. This is a very bad TV show. Please turn it off.” Those were the very words my 12-year-old son sent me via an amusing passive-aggressive text message while we were watching The Glades: The Complete Second Season — a show I had the opportunity to check out last year when the first season hit DVD. Back then, I found it to be a strangely-enjoyable series: one that was, for all accounts and purposes to anyone with even rudimentary motor skills, bad. The weird thing is, that — despite being was an uncompromisingly-awful television show — it was still fun to watch. (more…)
Tags: Alan Arkin, black comedy, Cinema Sentries, Greg Kinnear, mystery
As someone who occasionally forms ideas and words together with the hopes of someday turning them into an actual bona fide story, the nightmare of having another person completely rewrite your work for the sake of making a moving picture more acceptable to “mainstream” (read: obtuse) moviegoing audiences is a completely realistic one to me. But even completing your opus the way you envisioned it isn’t always enough to make it through the cold dark tunnel of studio executivedom: sometimes, somebody is told re-edit your entire movie, re-title it, re-score it, and release it with a trailer that makes it look like you just reproduced Fargo. All without your permission, mind you.
[Read the rest at Cinema Sentries.]
Tags: Anthony LaPaglia, Cinema Sentries, Jerry Bruckheimer, mystery, television
My first viewing experience of Jerry Bruckheimer’s Without a Trace really wasn’t much of a voluntary one. I was reviewing another Bruckheimer production, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation – The Eighth Season, at another (now defunct) site and one of the bonus features was the Season Six episode of Without a Trace “Where and Why” — which was only included as it was a crossover episode to the CSI episode, “Who and What.” Frankly, I wasn’t too terribly impressed with what I saw: the writing seemed pretty simplistic, and the performances were fairly mediocre at best.
[Read the rest at Cinema Sentries.]
Tags: BBC, Benedict Cumberbatch, Cinema Sentries, Martin Freeman, mystery, Sherlock Holmes
It doesn’t matter we’re talking about a gifted mathematician or an extremely skilled plumber: every genius is that of a flawed one. Even the fictional individuals. And there is no better proof than Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s immortal character of Sherlock Holmes. Portrayed on big and small screens alike countless times since his first published appearance in 1887, the character of Sherlock is — without a doubt — the most popular of all fabricated creations to appear in film and television. He’s also the most freely-adapted character, having served as the inspiration for House, M.D. and more.
[Read the rest at Cinema Sentries.]
Tags: blogcritics, Comedy, Drama, Frank Sinatra, gay, Musical, mystery, nudity, romance, Thriller, War
DVD Review: The Frank Sinatra Film Collection
Article first published as DVD Review: The Frank Sinatra Film Collection on Blogcritics.
The Chairman of the Board. Ol’ Blue Eyes. The Voice. The Man Who Was Almost Dirty Harry. He Who Fathered Sufficiently Less-Talented Offspring. Whatever you call him, there was only one Frank Sinatra. And let’s face it: who could possibly even hope to measure up to Frankie’s still-alluring charm, tenor, and screen presence? The answer, of course — no matter how hard some of today’s clowns may try (and they do) — is a very heartfelt and sincere “no one.” There will, undoubtedly, be those who will attempt to do so; and though my first piece of advice would most assuredly be “You’re a loon,” my second suggestion would be to watch an assortment of Mr. Sinatra’s motion pictures. (more…)