Weekly Wire
Film + TV
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Ally Oops [2]
This writer is mystified by the popularity of one of TV's most annoying characters.
— Jacqueline Marino, MEMPHIS FLYER
Sitcommie [3]
Rare insights on the final episode of some pointless TV comedy series or other.
No Stone Untenured [4]
ACTLab Director Jenny Staff discusses her struggles with the University of Texas' RTF department and the joy she gets from teaching.
— John Lebkowsky, AUSTIN CHRONICLE

Deep Impact
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Earth-Shattering News [5]
Leave it to Hollywood to make the end of the world seem rather a bland and boring affair.
— James DiGiovanna, TUCSON WEEKLY
Deep Impact's Whimper [6]
The Movie Guru heads for the hills after watching "Deep Impact."
— Coury Turczyn, METRO PULSE
A Comet's Tale [7]
"Deep Impact" is something different: a science-fiction film with a woman's touch. Also reviewed: "Burn! Hollywood! Burn!" and "Nil by Mouth."
— Debbie Gilbert, MEMPHIS FLYER
Down to Earth [8]
"Deep Impact" delivers the disaster-movie goods; "Les Miserables" makes a Yugo of Hugo; boo to "Woo."
— Jim Ridley, Noel Murray, and Donna Bowman, NASHVILLE SCENE

Full Reviews
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A Truck Runs Over It [9]
"The Horse Whisperer" trots instead of gallops, but the ride is enjoyable.
— Michael Henningsen, WEEKLY ALIBI
Balkan Holocaust [10]
Movie review of "Welcome to Sarajevo" with Stephen Dillane. Also, "The Spanish Prisoner."
— Rick Barton, GAMBIT WEEKLY
Reconstructing Woody [11]
If nothing else, "Wild Man Blues," Barbara Kopple's blithe and entertaining if not especially hard-hitting new documentary about Woody Allen's Dixieland-band tour, gives Soon-Yi the upper hand.
Dogged [12]
An essay on the new film from John Duigan, "Lawn Dogs."
Character Counts? [13]
"Character" is a meditation on the way children eventually grow up to be both like and unlike their parents.
— Angie Drobnic, WEEKLY ALIBI
Puzzle Box [14]
Director Wayne Wang's "Chinese Box," the first film to chronicle the handing over of Hong Kong, is a tragic romance that flirts with but never quite makes a political statement.

Video + TV
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Videos a Go-Go [19]
Every week, we explore a movie genre for your enhanced rent 'n' view pleasure. This week: neo-noirs.
— Adrienne Martini, METRO PULSE
Stars and Bars [20]
Noel Murray steps into the big house for a look at great prison movies.
Scanlines [21]
The works of documentarian and TV guerrilla Michael Moore on video.
Shall We Dance? [22]
Masayuki Suo's gem is now available.

May 18 - May 26, 1998  

D idn't you just hate all that "Seinfeld" hype last week? Moreover, didn't you just hate all the columnists who spoke out against "Seinfeld" hype? As a friend of mine observed, "If you point out the hype, you're contributing to it!" So let me state now, for the record, that I freely admit I'm contributing to the hype. And why not? Hated or not, these days hype is where it's at.

So anyway, I caught that final "Seinfeld" episode, and here are my two opinions:

Opinion #1: The show was an appropriate send-off. They slipped in a few words of homage to their terrific writing team, they gave all their supporting players the center stage during the trial scene, and the conclusion openly acknowledged that their characters are selfish jerks. Stick 'em in jail! Cool!

Opinion #2: It wasn't that funny. It was labored. It was kind of boring. The cast members were amusing because they were bastards -- I never really wanted to see them get their comeuppance in a big way. Their weekly humiliation was enough. To hell with TV moralizing; they shoulda just brought on the jokes.

Want more opinions? Check out this column, which is so opinionated it makes my two views look downright factual. Expect more next week, too. The hype must flow.

Speaking of hype, a little show called "Ally McBeal" has done a fine job of generating its fair share. Simultaneously making mincemeat of the worlds of lawyers and love (or more appropriate to its spirit of irony, "love"), the show stars a comely woman who appears to be an elf, and leapt to notoriety after it began including computer-generated hallucinations of a dancing baby. Charmed yet? If not, read this editorial. Not everyone digs dancing babies.

We've also got a piece about the unconventional approaches of a college film teacher, several more mixed reviews of "Deep Impact," and the usual assortment of film and video critiques. Put your feet up and enjoy.

Mini Reviews
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Austin Chronicle [15]

  • The Horse Whisperer
  • The Gingerbread Man
  • Underground
  • Character
  • Chinese Box
  • Chocolate Babies
  • Quest for Camelot
  • Woo

Boston Phoenix [16]

  • The Horse Whisperers
  • Artemisia
  • A Friend of the Deceased
  • Level Five
  • Shooting Fish
  • Woo
  • Quest for Camelot

Chicago NewcityNet [17]

  • Artemisia
  • The Horse Whisperer
  • Shooting Fish

Tucson Weekly [18]

  • Deep Crimson
  • Suicide Kings

Now What? [23]
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?

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!

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