Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Holiday Downers

If you’re looking for some holiday cheer, don’t expect to find much of it in the movies released during Christmas week this year.

Take a look at these major offerings now playing in our multiplexes:

Marley & Me – one of the saddest dog movies ever made.

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button – Ben is born as a shriveled old man, then lives his life backwards and dies as a baby.

Seven Pounds – Will Smith’s character undergoes severe sacrifices to help other people live.

Valkyrie – German officers take part in a failed attempt to kill Adolph Hitler.

With the national economy tanking, we could’ve used more comedies than Adam Sandler’s disappointing Bedtime Stories to take our minds off such serious problems for a couple of hours. Right?

Guess I’ll have to watch my DVD version of Mamma Mia! again.

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Friday, December 26, 2008

A Christmas Story

My husband and I watched A Christmas Story for the umpteenth time yesterday and guess what? It's as delightful and funny as ever! In fact, I think this film is about as perfect as any movie could possibly be.

There's never a dull moment while watching Ralphie devise ways to make sure he receives that Red Ryder rifle for Christmas, no matter how many people warn him "You'll shoot your eye out." And the casting simply couldn't be better. Peter Billingsley as Ralphie, Melinda Dillon as his long-suffering mom and Darren McGavin as his furnace-fighting dad (the best performance of McGavin's career, in my opinion) fit their roles like they were born to play them. Author Jean Shepherd's wonderful narration is icing on the holiday cake. No wonder this is my all-time favorite family comedy.

Yes, indeed. Christmas means peace, love and joy in celebration of the birth of Jesus. But at our house, it also means taking another look at A Christmas Story.

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Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Best of BlogTalkRadio 2008

I’m delighted to be included as one of the featured hosts on the “Best of BlogTalkRadio 2008” show. Alan Levy, BTR’s CEO, congratulated “Movie Addict Headquarters” for scheduling so many amazing guests during the past year.

Clips from our interviews with veteran actor Joe Mantegna and Robert Osborne, Turner Classic Movies host, were among those played during this wonderful two-hour show that aired last night (December 22, 2008).

Listen to the archived segment by clicking on this link:

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Monday, December 15, 2008

Hugh Jackman To Host Oscars

If anyone can enliven an Oscar Awards Ceremony, it's Hugh Jackman. He wowed everyone as a Tony Awards host -- and now he's signed on to host the Oscars in February. I'm convinced Jackman will do a great job. In addition to being easy on the eye, he can sing and dance plus tell amusing stories with the best of them.

As one of Jackman's many fans, I can hardly wait to see him class up the Oscars. Too bad he probably won't also be one of the nominees. His wonderful performance in Australia has failed to garner much critical acclaim -- but he's definitely on my short list for Best Actor.

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Friday, December 12, 2008

Three Happy Nominees

Why are Meryl Streep, Kate Winslet and Ralph Fiennes so happy today? Because each one received two – count ‘em -- Golden Globe nominations yesterday.

Streep earned Best Actress recognition for her outstanding performances in the acclaimed drama Doubt and the wonderful musical Mamma Mia! Winslet joins Streep (and three other nominees) in the drama category for her equally splendid acting in Revolutionary Road. She also picked up a Best Supporting nomination for The Reader. And the nominations for Fiennes include Best Supporting Actor for The Duchess plus Best Actor for Bernard and Doris, a made-for-TV movie. Although not one of my favorite actors, Fiennes was brilliant in both films.

Congratulations to this talented trio! Competition in all Golden Globe acting categories may be intense this year, but earning two nominations is something Streep, Winslet and Fiennes can be very proud of.

Golden Globe winners will be announced Sunday, January 11, on NBC.

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Monday, December 01, 2008

Going for the Gold

Youngsters who enjoy reading about mysteries are in for a treat with L.S. Cauldwell’s first Anna Mae Mystery novel. This lively adventure follows three friends as they work together -- with the help of a most unusual grandmother -- on a daring school project, one that involves finding the lost gold of Jefferson Davis.

Filled with supernatural happenings, humorous dialogue, and colorful characters of diverse racial/ethnic backgrounds, The Golden Treasure is a gem of a story -- and hopefully, the beginning of many books featuring Anna Mae, its courageous ‘tween heroine, and her two loyal cohorts, Malcolm and Raul.

While reading The Golden Treasure, I couldn’t help imagining it as a terrific family movie. (Think an older, braver Our Gang meets National Treasure.) I’m convinced it would bring in big bucks at the box office!

Anna Mae Mysteries: The Golden Treasure
By L. S. Cauldwell and Illustrated by Ben Cauldwell
A Star Publish Book

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