Hollywood Walk of Fame Honors Late Samurai Star Toshiro Mifune 

toshiro-mifune-collage1

Hollywood celebrated the life of legendary Japanese actor Toshiro Mifune on Monday, honoring him with a star on its iconic Walk of Fame two decades after his death.

Mifune rose to stardom through Akira Kurosawa’s classics, including “Rashomon” (1950) and “Seven Samurai” (1954), with masculine portrayals of powerful warlords that earned him a reputation as the world’s best samurai actor.

He died in Tokyo at that age of 77 in 1997. He had been mostly confined to his home since suffering a heart attack five years earlier.

mifune

His death shocked Japan’s cinema industry, which took pride in him as its most presentable actor in international cinema, fondly calling him “Mifune of the world.”

Kurosawa cast Mifune in leading roles in all but one of 17 films he made between 1948 and 1965. “Rashomon,” in which Mifune played a cynical bandit, won the Grand Prix award at the 1951 Venice Film Festival.

samurai-rebellion-2

Mifune played a peasant-turned samurai leading farmers’ resistance against bandits in “Seven Samurai,” which inspired two Western remakes, both titled “The Magnificent Seven” (1960 and 2016). Read the rest of this entry »


Fox’s Roger Ailes: Jon Stewart’s Sugar Daddy Comedy Supplier Sends the Departing Host Home with a Taste of His Own Medicine

roger_ailes

Roger Ailes: a smile and a knife in the ribs

“He’s been after us for years. Occasionally we pay attention. We think he’s funny. We never took it seriously and he never made a dent in us.”

Paul Bond writes: As Jon Stewart‘s final Daily Show approaches, the comedian has mercilessly mocked Fox News Channel, even comparing Roger Ailes to Death. It’s almost like he’s daring the network’s chairman and CEO to respond. Now, he has.

Daily-Show-Stewart

“He’s a brilliant comedian. He’s actually a very nice guy, and I saw him with his kids on the street. He’s a good father. He has a bitter view of the world and you see it embodied in how he’s reacting to Fox News, equating it with death.”

“He’s been after us for years. Occasionally we pay attention. We think he’s funny. We never took it seriously and he never made a dent in us,” Ailes told The Hollywood Reporter after being contacted on Wednesday.

“He’s feeling unrewarded because Fox News beats him on the amount of money we make, on ratings and on popularity. I’m sure it’s very depressing when he sits home at night and worries about it. We never did.”

The Fox News chief added: “As he faces the end of his career, he’s beginning to wonder: ‘Is this as popular as I’m ever going to get? Is this as much power as I’ll ever have? The one person I could never get rid of was Roger Ailes. I tried. I did everything I could.’ This was all a plea to his lefty friends. I think he’s disappointed that he didn’t accomplish that goal, and we, of course, supplied him with half of his comedy. It’s just a matter of disappointment.”

rs_560x366-131213094646-1024.jon-stewart-daily-show-megyn-kelly-santa-claus-121313

“As he faces the end of his career, he’s beginning to wonder: ‘Is this as popular as I’m ever going to get? Is this as much power as I’ll ever have? The one person I could never get rid of was Roger Ailes. I tried. I did everything I could.’ This was all a plea to his lefty friends. I think he’s disappointed that he didn’t accomplish that goal, and we, of course, supplied him with half of his comedy. It’s just a matter of disappointment.”

During his show last week, Jon Stewart showed a clip of the Ingmar Bergman movie, The Seventh Seal, only he substituted Ailes for the Death character. Ailes told THR he hadn’t seen the segment, but he isn’t surprised at the vitriol aimed at him.

roger-ailes-nyt-BW

“You can’t say that many negative things about people unless you’re really unhappy about something.  actually think he doesn’t dislike me. We met once or twice. I talked to him for an hour once in my office. I think he’s really smart and he’s got a great future.”

“He’s feeling unrewarded because Fox News beats him on the amount of money we make, on ratings and on popularity. I’m sure it’s very depressing when he sits home at night and worries about it. We never did,” Ailes said. Read the rest of this entry »


Cannes 2015 Poster Honors Ingrid Bergman

cannes-poster

There is perhaps no other film festival in the world whose annual poster is so anticipated, dissected and collected as the Cannes Film Festival. After paying homage last year to Marcello Mastroianni in Federico Fellini’s 8 1/2, this edition has chosen to honor Ingrid Bergman at the centenary of her birth. The Cassablanca star and three-time Oscar-winner was jury president in Cannes in 1973.

Bergman

She worked with such directors as Alfred Hitchcock, Roberto Rossellini and Ingmar Bergman; and starred opposite iconic actors including Cary Grant, Humphrey Bogart and Gregory Peck. A documentary by Stig Björkman, Ingrid Bergman, In Her Own Words‏, will feature in the Cannes Classics section in May, the fest said today….(read more)

Deadline


Groundhog Delivers Verdict: Chill, Go Watch The Movie, I’m Going Back Inside…

groundhog

A Movie for All Time: Groundhog Day

Re-running this Feb. 2005 cover story, year after year, is a tradition at NRO. It’s a thoughtful and entertaining GHdayreview, for a beloved cult movie that’s gotten an unusual amount of attention, for a comedy, over the years, since its release in 1983. Both serious and funny (it’s funny first) Groundhog Day is also moral, and spiritual, in ways we don’t expect. Every religion, creed, faith, philosophy known to man claims the movie’s message as its own. In scholarly theological circles, no less, it’s generated a lot of ink, and a lot of discussion. This article is a good summary of all that.

Jonah Goldberg writes:

Here’s a line you’ll either recognize or you won’t: “This is one time where television really fails to capture the true excitement of a large squirrel predicting the weather.” If you don’t recognize this little gem, you’ve either never seen Groundhog Day or you’re not a fan of what is, in my opinion, one of the best films of the last 40 years. As the day of the groundhog again approaches, it seems only fitting to celebrate what will almost undoubtedly join It’s a Wonderful Life in the pantheon of America’s most uplifting, morally serious, enjoyable, and timeless movies.

[Groundhog Day at Amazon]

When I set out to write this article, I thought it’d be fun to do a quirky homage to an offbeat flick, one I think is brilliant as both comedy and moral philosophy. But while doing what I intended to be cursory research — how much reporting do you need for a review of a twelve-year-old movie that plays constantly on cable? — I discovered that I wasn’t alone in my interest.

Read the rest of this entry »