Weekly Wire
Film + TV
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Digital Anvil Chorus
Digital Anvil and Microsoft are teaming up to bring "Wing Commander" to the big screen. [2]
Marc Savlov

No Subtitles!
An interview with "Nil by Mouth" director Gary Oldman. [3]
Gerald Peary

The Big Lebowski
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Coen Job
The Coen brothers unleashed "The Big Lebowski" this week, and now they want to talk about it. [4]
Ray Pride

Life's a Ball
The Coen brothers' "The Big Lebowski" is a shaggy-dog tale to end all shaggy dog tales -- another feelgood movie about kidnapping. [5]
Gary Susman

Beer Frame
Taking a sharp right turn from "Fargo"'s occasionally somber iciness, "The Big Lebowski" is a colorful, white-trash farce along the lines of "Raising Arizona." [6]
Devin D. O'Leary

L.A. Pandemic
In "The Big Lebowski," the fabulous Coen brothers take on all things Los Angeles. [7]
Stacey Richter

Full Reviews
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Movie Guru
The Movie Guru believes that Knoxville, Tennessee was actually constructed by aliens wanting to secretly study human funnel cake production. Or maybe he got the idea from "Dark City." [8]
Coury Turczyn

It's a Mad World
The more paranoid, the better for "Dark City." [9]
Susan Ellis

More Than Zero
Catch "Zero Effect" before it vanishes. [10]
Jim Ridley, Noel Murray, and Donna Bowman

Nil Power
Gary Oldman's "Nil by Mouth" is a film about people who love stories because their own lives lack them. [11]
Peter Keough

Cookie Cutter
Robert Altman's adaptation of John Grisham's "The Gingerbread Man" is a canny, bittersweet, densely layered film noir despite being born under a bad sign. [12]
Peter Keough

Love Potions and Hot Bodies
Movie reviews of "Afterglow" and "Palmetto." [13]
Rick Barton

Film Tip of the Week
This week's must-see flick: Harmony Korine's "Gummo." [14]
Ray Pride

Video + TV
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Whoa! Take a look at "The Horrors of Spider Island" and "Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation!" [19]
Scott Phillips

Videos a Go-Go
Every week, we explore a movie genre for your enhanced rent 'n' view pleasure. This week: Helluloid! [20]
Jesse Fox Mayshark

The then and now of technoplots. [21]

Volume I, Issue 40
March 9 - March 16, 1998

I 'm always interested to see what actors come up with when they make the transition to directing. Stuck in front of the camera movie after movie, actors can get mighty itchy for control; sooner or later they're asking, "Hey, why don't we do it this way?" From there it's just a slippery slope toward the need for cinematic omnipotence -- best summarized by those eight famous words: "What I really want to do is direct."

That's when years of built-up creative control kick in, sometimes resulting in risky yet broadly appealing entertainments like Mel Gibson's "Braveheart" or Kevin Costner's "Dances With Wolves" -- and other times resulting in mediocre fare like Tom Hanks' "That Thing You Do!" or Kevin Costner's "Waterworld." (Sorry, Kev!)

The latest to join the actor-to-director club? Drum roll....Gary Oldman! Yep, as writer and director of "Nil by Mouth," mister Over-the-Top finally decided to get Behind-the-Camera and let somebody else screech and cackle for a while. He tells us all about it in an interview. Boy, is he serious...and the movie sounds grim too. Then again, has Oldman ever appeared in anything remotely light and frothy? Besides that gently mirthful "Sid & Nancy," I mean?

I'll probably brace myself and see his movie when it comes out. For now, though, I'll stick to "The Big Lebowski," the Coen brothers' first film since "Fargo." If you think Oldman's a terse chap, just wait till you read these couple of interviews with the Coens. But why concern yourself with what they think when you could get the real low-down in three reviews by professional critics? Eh?

I'd also love to tell you about a great article on the latest video-game movie and how it's zapping together. And I'd love to share two darkly compelling (and very dark) reviews of the very dark "Dark City," which is dark. I'd even love to let you in on two video articles which summarize the best in hacker and Satanic movies. But what I really, really want to do (didn't you see this coming?) is direct.

Mini Reviews
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Boston Phoenix

  • Mrs. Dalloway
  • The Education of Little Tree
  • Twilight

Austin Chronicle

  • American Job
  • The Big Lebowski
  • Caught Up
  • Dangerous Beauty
  • Hush
  • Twilight
  • U.S. Marshals
  • The Wind in the Willows

NewCity Chicago

  • Dangerous Beauty
  • Hush
  • Nil by Mouth
  • Twilight
  • U.S. Marshals

Tucson Weekly

  • Caught Up
  • Dark City
  • Kissing a Fool
  • Krippendorf's Tribe
  • Ma Vie en Rose

From The Vaults

The Film Vault Curious about a particular director's work? Not sure what to rent at the video store? Enjoy reading several contrasting opinions of the same film? This is the place for you. One of the all-time best film-review resources on the Web. Sort alphabetically or by publication, genre, director, or date. Check it out!

Now What?
What's the matter, couldn't find a review of that blockbuster film you're excited about? We certainly don't want to leave you disappointed -- why not try some of these larger-than-life movie links? [22]

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