Image copyright © by Marcus Trahan



Idioglossia was a stage play, and is the name for an odd phenomenon that happens mainly between identical twins. They sometimes develop their own private language. These things can be amazingly complex. They have their own names for themselves and other people, and objects, too. It usually disappears around the age of puberty.

Jodie Foster is Nell, who ... Read more »



Here’s a movie that I have to review twice. The thing is, I saw one movie forty-one years ago, and another movie last night. I will call them Then, and Now.

THEN: If there was ever a better screenwriter than Paddy Chayefsky I’ve never heard of him. William Goldman is great, but he’s not deep. Ernest Lehman, Ingmar Bergman, Woody Allen, the Coen Brothers … all wonderful. But none of ... Read more »

Never Wave at a WAC


The grandmother of Private Benjamin, but without most of the fun. All through the ‘50s and into the ‘60s the WWII generation, of whom most of the males had served in the armed forces, were gaga for “service comedies.” These films made the Army and the Navy seem like fun places to be. This time it was the Women’s Army Corps’s turn. The WAC was founded in 1942 and ... Read more »

A New Leaf


You could hardly do better for a comic movie team than Walter Matthau and Elaine May, unless it is Matthau and Lemmon. May wrote, directed, and co-stars here. He is a playboy and a wastrel who finds out he has spent all his money (in a hilarious scene with his accountant) and now desperately needs to marry a rich woman so he can kill her and inherit. He drives a Ferrari that can probably ... Read more »

The New World


Terence Malick has now directed 4 films: Badlands (1973), Days of Heaven (1978), The Thin Red Line (1998), and now this one. Four films in 33 years. That’s less than Stanley Kubrick’s output, but until now I’d almost have ranked him with Mr. K. No longer. Though he has his own unique vision, ... Read more »

New York: A Documentary Film


Ric Burns is the younger brother of Ken Burns, who is far better known for his many documentary series shown on PBS. Ric was the producer for many of them. This time he was on his own, and he shows himself the clear equal of Ken. He uses pretty much the same techniques his brother does, with the slow pace, the pan and scan over old photos and tintypes, the evocative music, the talking ... Read more »

New York, New York


I have a sort of love-hate relationship to this film. It is absolutely gorgeous, shot entirely on the very sound stages at MGM that Liza Minnelli’s mother, Judy Garland, worked on in her musical prime. It has more music per minute than just about anything but grand opera, and it is all music that I love, featuring the songs of Tommy Dorsey at first, and working through to the early days of ... Read more »

New York Stories


Three different stories by three different directors, held together only by the fact that all three take place on Manhattan Island.

  • Life Lessons. Martin Scorsese’s contribution, and naturally, being Scorsese’s, it is the most serious of the trio. Nick Nolte is an abstract painter of some repute and wealth. Rosanna Arquette is his much-younger ... Read more »



Will the plundering of the works of Philip K Dick never cease? What’s the deal here, are the stories in the public domain? I mean, they’re good stories, but no other SF author has had nearly as many big, expensive, stupid movies made from his works. It began 25 years ago with the gorgeous but overwrought and illogical Blade Runner (from the novel ... Read more »

The Next Three Days


Does this ever happen to you? You watch a movie on TV, add it to the list of movies you intend to write to a friend about, or talk about, or write a review about, and then you forget about it for a couple of months, and when you sit down to write … you can’t recall much about it? It’s not necessarily a bad movie, it’s just not great, and in the end, not very memorable. That’s what happened ... Read more »