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66th Annual Writer's Guild Awards Los Angeles Ceremony

Betsy Mazursky and Paul Mazursky - 66th Annual Writer's Guild Awards Los Angeles Ceremony at JW Marriott - Arrivals - Los Angeles, California, United States - Saturday 1st February 2014

Paul Mazursky
Paul Mazursky
Betsy Mazursky and Paul Mazursky
Paul Mazursky
Paul Mazursky

The 36th Annual Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards held at the InterContinental Hotel - Arrivals

Paul Mazursky and Los Angeles Film Critics Association Saturday 15th January 2011 The 36th Annual Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards held at the InterContinental Hotel - Arrivals Century City, California

The 36th Annual Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards held at the InterContinental Hotel - Arrivals

Paul Mazursky and Los Angeles Film Critics Association - Paul Mazursky with Family Century City, California - The 36th Annual Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards held at the InterContinental Hotel - Arrivals Saturday 15th January 2011

Paul Mazursky and Los Angeles Film Critics Association

I Want Someone to Eat Cheese With Review


OK
As the affably larcenous and willing-to-please foil to Larry David on Curb Your Enthusiasm, Jeff Garlin has it easier than just about anybody on the show, usually having to do little more than spread his arms and protest with a baffled "Whaaat?!" or "Come ahn!" to get a laugh. David panics, Garlin gripes; it's a good mix. What works well for a sidekick, of course, is usually night and day from what works for a lead. This issue crops up repeatedly in I Want Someone to Eat Cheese With, directed, written by, and starring Garlin, who ambles the streets of Chicago, bouncing from rejection to odd (but funny) scenario to rejection again with the same resigned air. The laughs come, but with hardly anybody able to get a rise out of this guy, they're more like quiet chuckles when they could be explosive.

I Want Someone to Eat Cheese With is a genial piece of work that is not much more than a sequence of barely-connected riffs. This should be perfectly fine for most people watching, as the majority of the riffs star good people who seem perfectly happy to hang out and improv some well-calibrated chaos with Garlin. He plays 39-year-old James, a Chicago comic who's still living with his mom and eking out an existence as an improv comic and occasional actor. With no girlfriend and having just lost out a part in a remake of Marty to Aaron Carter, James moons about the city in a lovelorn fashion and suffers through a series of low-level professional and romantic humiliations. These stages of plot exist not so much to illustrate James' dark night of the soul as to provide stages for the high-grade performers Garlin talked into coming out to play. Second City notables like Bonnie Hunt, Dan Castellaneta, and Tim Kazurinsky are given pride of place, and there are good turns from Richard Kind and Roger Bart -- though the cameo rotation gets excessive with one scene in particular that's obviously jammed in there just to give Amy Sedaris a reason to show up.

Continue reading: I Want Someone to Eat Cheese With Review

A Slight Case Of Murder (1999) Review


Excellent
TNT continues to prove itself as a powerhouse of made-for-TV filmmaking. This modern noir, with Macy as a put-upon film critic who accidentally kills one of his girlfriends and tries to cover it up, is relentlessly entertaining. I could do without the commercials every eight minutes, though. William H. Macy co-wrote the script.

I Love You, Alice B. Toklas! Review


Grim
Peter Sellers made a lot of good movies, and history has been kind enough to purge the memory of the bad ones from our collective minds. The painfully titled I Love You, Alice B. Toklas! is one of those bad ones, the kind I'd now -- having just sat through it -- would prefer to forget altogether.

The setup is straight out of a '60s sitcom: Harold Fine (Sellers) is a stuffy lawyer. He re-encounters his dippy hippie brother Herbie (David Arkin) to take him to a funeral, and is immediately disgusted by his free-living ways. But when Herbie's pal Nancy (Leigh Taylor-Young) concocts a batch of pot brownies, Harold suddenly goes nuts for the hippie life. He turns his apartment into a love shrine, where he and Nancy can, well, eat a lot of pot brownies. Will he tire of this in the end and go back to his wife-to-be (whom he left at the altar to head off with Nancy)? Who cares?

Continue reading: I Love You, Alice B. Toklas! Review

Miami Rhapsody Review


Excellent
Director David Frankel loves Woody Allen. Miami Rhapsody is "Woody" through and through, from the big band intro music to the Jewish characters to Mia Farrow's presence. This time around, Farrow plays the adulterous mother of Sarah Jessica Parker, whose monologue wanders through every conceivable aspect of love, marriage, and infidelity.

The supporting cast is fabulous: Paul Mazursky (father and adulterer), Antonio Banderas (receiving end of adultery), Kevin Pollak (adulterer with pregnant wife). You get the picture. The only failures here are supermodel Naomi Campbell as Pollacks's love interest, who couldn't act her way out of an insurance seminar, and Parker herself, whose comedic timing is never quite right. Some people are heralding Miami Rhapsody as Parker's breakthrough into mainstream acting. Don't count on it.

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Why Do Fools Fall In Love? Review


Weak
Or, a better question: Why would anyone think a movie about a battle over music royalties by three vengeful women, starring Little Richard as himself, would be any good?

An Unmarried Woman Review


OK
Jill Clayburgh delivers her seminal performance in this well-regarded film about the female response to a husband who leaves her (er, so she's a married woman, but that's beside the point). And while Clayburgh soars, the rest of the film is hopelessly dated with its late '70s pop psychology, nutty hairdos, and creepy free love sentiment. And frankly, it's a little bit boring.

2 Days In The Valley Review


Excellent
If you've seen the trailer, the #1 question on your mind about 2 Days in the Valley must be: Is it a Pulp Fictionrip-off, or is it a bad Pulp Fiction rip-off?

Well, the answer is this: Yes, it's a shameless Pulp Fictionrip-off (more like Pulp Fiction meets Short Cuts), but it's actually quite entertaining, in its own quirky little way.

Continue reading: 2 Days In The Valley Review

A Slight Case Of Murder Review


Excellent
TNT continues to prove itself as a powerhouse of made-for-TV filmmaking. This modern noir, with Macy as a put-upon film critic who accidentally kills one of his girlfriends and tries to cover it up, is relentlessly entertaining. I could do without the commercials every eight minutes, though. William H. Macy co-wrote the script.

Crazy In Alabama Review


Weak

After a 26-year career of coming off like fingernails on a chalkboard, Melanie Griffith has finally begun to mature as an actress.

In 1996 she stood out from the otherwise sorry "Mullholland Falls" in an emotional role as a cheating cop's heartbroken wife. Early this year she was a revelation as an aging heroine addict and ironically motherly, career petty thief in "Another Day in Paradise." And now there's "Crazy In Alabama," an daffy, obliging murder farce set precariously against more serious undertones of 1960s racial strife.

Griffith was the perfect choice to star as Lucille, a dizzy, Southern, '60s sex bomb housewife, on the lam and headed for Hollywood after offing her abusive husband. Of course, the part was hers anyway, since this picture is the directorial debut of her husband, smoldering Spanish sex symbol Antonio Banderas.

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The Majestic Review


OK

A heartfelt and surprisingly successful revival of the cinema-idyllic world of Frank Capra movies, "The Majestic" stars Jim Carrey as a blacklisted Hollywood screenwriter with amnesia who stumbles into a small coastal hamlet where he's mistaken for a long-lost native World War II hero.

Affable alchemy is the specialty of director Frank Darabont -- the man behind the affecting sentimental sincerity of "The Shawshank Redemption" and "The Green Mile" -- and he's just about the only big-budget, soft-sell director in the business who could pull off this kind of potentially cloying picture without sending it into sugar shock. Capra's legacy is in good hands for these 150 minutes.

Darabont opens "The Majestic" with a terrific establishing shot of Carrey's melancholy mug as he listens to off-camera studio executives castrate his latest script. Despite his fresh-off-the-bus enthusiasm for Tinsel Town, Peter Appleton (Carrey) is already weary of being a B-movie hack after just one picture, the cheesy "Sand Pirates of the Sahara" (which Darabont shows us in delightfully authentic snippets featuring Bruce Campbell as the swashbuckling, pith-helmet hero and Cliff Curtis as an evil, wild-eyed sheik).

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Big Shot's Funeral Review


Weak

It seems everyone is getting into the act when it comes to Hollywood behind-the-scenes movies these days -- even the Chinese.

After 10 films in the genre just last year (from "Adaptation" to "S1m0ne"), we're barely three weeks into 2003 and here comes "Big Shot's Funeral," a comedy from Beijing about an out-of-work cameraman (Ge You) hired to shoot making-of footage for a big American studio's way-over-budget historical epic.

Despite a nearly insurmountable language barrier, Ge is befriended by the increasingly erratic director of this imitation "Last Emperor" -- a flaky filmmaking legend, played with befitting bewilderment by Donald Sutherland. The big shot thinks Ge understands him inherently, and the crazier he gets, the more he wants Ge around.

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