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The Consul General Of France, Mr. Axel Cruau, Honors The French Nominees For The 87th Annual Academy Awards

Mr. Axel Cruau, Martin Landau and Guest - The Consul General Of France, Mr. Axel Cruau, Honors The French Nominees For The 87th Annual Academy Awards at French Consul Residence, Academy Awards - Beverly Hills, California, United States - Monday 23rd February 2015

Mr. Axel Cruau, Martin Landau and Guest
Mr. Axel Cruau, Martin Landau and Guest
Mr. Axel Cruau, Martin Landau and Guest
Martin Landau and Sam Bobino
Martin Landau and Sam Bobino

The 87th Annual Oscars - Vanity Fair Oscar Party

Martin Landau and producer Susan Landau Finch - A host of stars were photographed as they attended the Vanity Fair Oscar Party which was held at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts and The Beverly Hills City Hall in Los Angeles, California, United States - Monday 23rd February 2015

Martin Landau and producer Susan Landau Finch

Norby Walters' 24nd Annual Night Of 100 Stars Oscar Viewing Gala

Martin Landau and Gretchen Becker - Norby Walters' 24nd Annual Night Of 100 Stars Oscar Viewing Gala held at Beverly Hills Hotel - Arrivals - Los Angeles, California, United States - Sunday 2nd March 2014

Celebrities attend 2014 Vanity Fair Oscar Party at Sunset Plaza.

Martin Landau and Gretchen Becker - Celebrities attend 2014 Vanity Fair Oscar Party at Sunset Plaza. - Los Angeles, United States - Sunday 2nd March 2014

Vanity Fair Oscar Party

Martin Landau - 2013 Vanity Fair Oscar Party at Sunset Tower - Arrivals - Los Angeles, California, United States - Monday 25th February 2013

Frankenweenie Review


Extraordinary

With a snappy sense of childish curiosity and lavishly skilled animation, Tim Burton makes one of his most endearing and enjoyably offbeat movies in years. It's actually a remake of a half-hour short he shot in 1984, fleshed out with terrific side characters and a much grander plot. But it's also been painstakingly made with detailed stop-motion animation that's both artistic and witty.

Set in what looks like the suburb from Edward Scissorhands, it's about lonely teen Victor Frankenstein (voiced by Tahan), whose best friend is his dog Sparky. When Sparky dies suddenly, Victor gets an idea from his science professor (Landau) to reanimate him. And it works! Victor hides this from his parents (O'Hara and Short) and the nice girl (Ryder) next door, but chatterbox classmate Edgar (Shaffer) blabs to some other kids in school, who decide they need to make their own science projects a lot more interesting. Suddenly the whole town is under siege by undead pets.

The film looks like a classic monster movie, shot in black and white with deep shadows and expressive faces, plus a hilariously entertaining attention to detail that will make you want to see the film over and over again. It's also packed with gags about the genre, including the names of characters, sudden sight gags (like the Bride of Frankenstein hair of the zapped poodle next door), and more witty references such as Gremlin-like sea-monkeys and a Godzilla-like reanimated tortoise (named, of course, Shelley). There's even an old Christopher Lee Dracula film showing on the TV. But the best thing about this film is the way it never relies on us getting the jokes: Burton has created his own classic too.

Continue reading: Frankenweenie Review

Frankenweenie Trailer


Victor Frankenstein is a young fanatic of science and loves making home movies with his pet bull terrier and best friend, Sparky. On discovering that his dog has died, he is devastated and will do anything to bring him back. His mother tries to offer comfort, telling Victor that Sparky will always be in his heart, but nothing she says makes him feel any better; that is, until, she says, 'If we could bring him back, we would' which triggers an idea in Victor's head - even more so after a science class at school shows how you can use electricity to stimulate muscle movement in deceased animals. He takes a trip to the cemetery and sets up a makeshift laboratory in which he attempts to rouse Sparky using various pieces of scientific equipment. When there is no movement from the dog, Victor is disappointed but, suddenly, Sparky starts moving and leaps off the table to his owner's utter delight. Victor has to hide him away in the attic of his house to avoid suspicion from his parents. However, Sparky escapes into the streets terrifying the neighbours and revealing secrets to the world that are probably best left undiscovered.

Continue: Frankenweenie Trailer

Frankenweenie Trailer


Victor Frankenstein is a young boy with an interest in science and home movies. The star of his home movies is his beloved bull terrier, Sparky. Victor and Sparky are very close, so the young boy is devastated to learn of the death of his dog.

Continue: Frankenweenie Trailer

9 Review


Good
Inventively animated with a striking attention to detail, this offbeat thriller might have trouble finding an audience, as the sweet and scary elements sit rather awkwardly alongside each other. But it's still ambitious and engaging.

Number 9 (Wood) is a brave little creature who wakes up into a decimated city where meets the inventive 2 (Landau), who's promptly captured by a scary monster. Soon 9 finds a community led by conservative leader 1 (Plummer) with his muscly/dim bodyguard 8 (Tatasciore) and obsessive sketch artist 6 (Glover).

It's the friendly 5 (Reilly) who accompanies 9 to rescue 2, and along the way they meet swashbuckling 7 (Connolly) and bookish twins 3 and 4. Together they need to figure out how to stop a voracious soul-sucking machine.

Continue reading: 9 Review

City Of Ember Review


Good
We critics like to argue that Hollywood defangs most family fare. Unless it can find a viable commercial tie-in, or lead to a series of equally superficial sequels, studio suits avoid anything remotely dark or contentious. Apparently, the applicable philosophy argues that childhood is a time of innocence and fun, therefore, any movie aimed at said audience should be even more fluffy and non-threatening. Watching City of Ember, the latest live-action effort from Monster House director Gil Kenan, a couple of questions instantly come to mind. One, who authorized such a wonderfully rich yet exceedingly grim adventure? And two, who exactly will show up on opening day?

For the residents of the city of Ember, these are troubled times. The massive generator that keeps the town functioning is failing, and Mayor Cole (Bill Murray) is at a loss for answers. A bumbling bureaucrat through and through, he'd rather maintain order than find a viable solution. Two young members of the community, Doon Harrow (Harry Treadway) and Lina Mayfleet (Saoirse Ronan) don't want to give up. He wants his father (Tim Robbins) and an elderly co-worker Sul (Martin Landau) to help him get to the damaged energy source. She discovers a strange box which may hold a key to saving the day. Unfortunately, a hidden cabal of city leaders may be trying to undermine any effort to bring Ember back from the brink.

Continue reading: City Of Ember Review

The X Files (1998) Review


OK
Little more than an expensive, flashy, and painfully drawn-out season finale, The X Files has little chance to draw any new fans to the TV show, if this is the best that can be done.

The movie opens with Agents Mulder (Duchovny) and Scully (Anderson) finding themselves on a new assignment after the closing of the X-files. Of course, through a bizarre coincidence, their very first assignment leads them to uncover a conspiracy involving the hiding of bodies of some would-be aliens. The plot turns alternately confusing and ridiculous after that.

Continue reading: The X Files (1998) Review

Ready to Rumble Review


Excellent
Wrestling - for all of its flash pots, Solid Gold dancers, and large, scantily clad, sweaty men - is the 21st century version of Ringing Bros., Barnum and Bailey's traveling tent show. When I was a kid, I used to watch the exploits of Andre the Giant, Macho Man Randy Savage, and the Honky Tonk Man. The newest generation of wrestlers have never interested me, with all of the theatrics and bad, bad attitudes toward almost everything under the sun. The "sport" of wrestling has become three hours of anger, deception, sexual dominance, and violent acts with chairs. The one thing that has always eluded me with the newest generation of wrestlers - Goldberg, Sting, Mankind, and The Rock - is the human element that drew me into the action so well as a kid. But Ready to Rumble helped remind me of the glory days I once had, sitting before the 13-inch RCA with the bottom knob broken off, watching my heroes triumph over the adversities of life's travels.

The film follow two losers, played by Scott Caan and David Arquette, who run a septic truck business for the local town of Lusk, Wyoming. Their idol is Jimmy King (Oliver Platt), grand champion belt holder of the WCW Federation, who proclaims "I WILL RULE YOU!" after every victory. Caan and Arquette attend a WCW bout and, in horror, watch their idol fall from grace by turncoat WCW wrestlers. Jimmy King is beaten to a bloody pulp and a fellow wrestler, Diamond Dallas Page, takes the belt from the fallen king. After the show, Caan and Arquette strike out to find their defeated hero and once again place the crown upon the rightful king of the ring.

Continue reading: Ready to Rumble Review

City Hall Review


OK
There's two things I dislike: politics and long, boring speeches. City Hall has plenty of both, and while Al Pacino is almost cool enough to make me think politics can be okay, it's got so many long speeches that I started looking for the remote control after the third or fourth one.

City Hall is a drama/thriller with most of the thrill sucked out of it. After a ridiculously convoluted opening, filled with the weak voice-over of the Deputy Mayor of New York City, Kevin Calhoun (John Cusack), we find ourselves embroiled in the world of Mayor John Pappas (Pacino). As the film opens, we find a cop and mobster killed in a shoot-out, taking with them the life of a six-year old boy.

Continue reading: City Hall Review

Broadway: The Golden Age, By The Legends Who Were There Review


OK
Self-indulgent to a fault and brusquely shoved together without much of a sense of rhythm, Broadway: The Golden Age is on the surface the five-year-long quest by filmmaker Rick McKay (Elaine Stritch at Liberty) to interview pretty much every Broadway luminary he could get his hands on, all for the purposes of limning the glory that was Broadway's "Golden Age." Now it's no surprise that you interview a bunch of aging actors/actresses who are in this particular demographic they're going to tell you that things today are rather awful, and in their day, were much, much better. What makes Broadway as engaging as it is would be the fact that McKay's interviewees are able to back up those claims with some rather illuminating anecdotes - and not just all of the "you could go to the automat and get a muffin and coffee for 15 cents" variety, though there's plenty of that as well.

Although McKay - whose irritating narration, the usual guff about moving to New York from Indiana and just how exciting it all was, brackets the film - never really posits what exactly he's on about with "The Golden Age," two things quickly become clear: The time period he and his subjects want to talk about is Broadway theater from the 1930s to the 1950s, and that period really would have been something to behold. The cavalcade of interviewees all point to not just the embarrassment of riches that were around then in terms of both the material (Lerner & Lowe and Rodgers & Hammerstein were like musical hit factories, not to mention the new dramatic work being produced by the likes of Tennessee Williams and Arthur Miller) and the talent, but another very simple factor: It was cheap. In a time of $480 The Producers tickets, it's partially nice but mostly infuriating to know that not so long ago it could cost less to go to a Broadway show than the movies.

Continue reading: Broadway: The Golden Age, By The Legends Who Were There Review

Martin Landau

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