Advertisement

Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Understanding Media and Pop Culture Archives

showing results 5 - 204 of 572

genre

  • Action
  • Animation
  • Comedy
  • Classic
  • Documentary
  • Drama
  • Epic
  • Fantasy
  • Horror
  • Musical
  • Romance
  • Science Fiction
  • Sports
  • Spy
  • Thriller
  • War
  • Western

quality

  • A+, A, A-
  • B+, B, B-
  • C+, C, C-
  • D+, D, D-
  • F+, F, F-

who's watching

  • My entire family
  • Just the grown-ups
  • Little kids
  • Big kids

age range

  • Kindergarten - 3rd grade
  • 4th - 6th grade
  • Middle school
  • High school
  • Mature High schooler
  • Adult
  • All Ages




Why Is There Only One American Actor in a Movie Set in NY?

posted by Nell Minow

“Cosmopolis” is a new movie based on a book by American author Don DeLillo.  It is a story about Americans who work in the world of finance and takes place entirely in New York City.  It stars British actor Robert […]

The FTC Helps Kids Understand Advertising

posted by Nell Minow

The Federal Trade Commission has an excellent website to help kids be smarter consumers.  It’s always a challenge to teach children to identify and challenge the bombardment of advertising messages they get every day.  You Are Here’s West Terrace explains targeted […]

What Makes a Really Good Bad Guy

posted by Nell Minow

Roger Ebert’s “Far-Flung Critics” are some of my favorite writers on film and Olivia Collette has a terrific new essay on  one of my favorite topics — villains, with a focus on Bane in the new Batman movie, “The Dark […]

What Movie Could You Watch a Million Times?

posted by Nell Minow

We all have one.  I have several.  Very often, it’s not a classic.  Sometimes it is a guilty pleasure.  But each of us has a movie we could take to a desert island and be happy to watch over and […]

Teaching Kids About “Stuff”

posted by Nell Minow

I like Kirsten Greenidge’s piece in the Boston Globe about what she did when her children had tantrums in a store.  She said she understands the appeal of “stuff.”  And she described how the seemingly harmless fun of posting photos […]

Matte Painting Backgrounds — Before CGI

posted by Nell Minow

Years ago, my husband and I attended an exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art in New York featuring the spectacular matte paintings of Peter Ellenshaw, who created the enthralling background designs for movies from the futuristic “Things to Come” […]

DVS: Making Movies Accessible to the Visually Impaired

posted by Nell Minow

Boston public television station WGBH is a pioneer in making movies and PBS shows available to the visually impaired by adding descriptive audio, called DVS.  That is a quiet narration to explain the actions and settings, like “Jim runs to […]

14-Year-Old Teaches 17 Magazine About Real Girls

posted by Nell Minow

I used to tell my daughter that she could read fashion magazines as long as she understood that everything in them, the articles and the ads, was intended to make her feel bad about her looks and buy a lot […]

Parental Alert: Pornography and Abuse on Teen Websites

posted by Nell Minow

Habbo Hotel, a popular social media website for teenagers, is reopening after suspending its interactive functions following an investigative journalist’s reports of abuse. Following Tuesday’s announcement that mobile app Skout temporarily closed its under-18 community amidst rape allegations, Finnish virtual world Habbo […]

The “Fi” in Sc-Fi — The Biggest Science Mistakes in Sci-Fi Movies

posted by Nell Minow

The release of “Prometheus” inspired the infinitely charismatic astrophysicist Neil DeGrasse Tyson to correct not just its mathematics but its arithmetic.   And it inspired Moviefone to create a gallery of the most outrageous science mistakes in sci-fi movies.  These are […]

Thelma Adams on “Snow White and the Huntsman” — “It Isn’t Pretty!”

posted by Nell Minow

Thelma Adams writes thoughtfully on Yahoo! Movies about what “Snow White and the Huntsman” says about Hollywood — and audience — obsession with beauty: Why is it so important to know who’s the fairest of them all, a question the […]

Book: 100 Ideas That Changed Film

posted by Nell Minow

Movies, invented at the end of the 19th century, became one of the defining art forms of the 20th century, moving from flickering images of stage performers to CGI-based effects that could bring any fantasy to life.  Oxford Times film critic […]

What a Trailer Tells You

posted by Nell Minow

The job of the people who make trailers is not to convey the real quality of a movie.  It is to get you to buy tickets.  io9 has a funny and astute primer on how to spot tricks in a […]

A Guide to Marvel’s Avengers Universe

posted by Nell Minow

Thanks to CinemaBlend for this handy guide: 10 Things You Need to Know About the Marvel Universe Before Seeing “The Avengers.” SPOILER ALERT!  Skip item 10.  But if you’re not up on the backstories of the characters, their powers, their […]

Men, Women, and The Three Stooges

posted by Nell Minow

Thanks to Thelma Adams for her thoughtful discussion of two perennial questions: Why do men like The Three Stooges?  Why don’t women like The Three Stooges? “That’s Not Funny! Why Comedy is Different for Men and Women” is Adams’ post […]

What Makes a Movie Line So Quotable?

posted by Nell Minow

The Huffington Post reports on a new computer analysis of the movies’ most quotable lines of dialog. [T]he study’s authors compiled scripts from 1,000 movies, and identified, using IMDb, Google and Bing, the lines from those movies that are quoted […]

How “Blue Like Jazz” Inspires the Audience

posted by Nell Minow

If you see the film, be sure to share your story.

Talking about Fairy Tales on WAMU

posted by Nell Minow

Many thanks to the Kojo Nnamdi Show for inviting me on to talk about fairy tales — their enduring popularity and their prevalence in today’s media — with two men whose books I have read and enjoyed, Jack Zipes and […]

“Bully” to Get a PG-13 Rating

posted by Nell Minow

After appeals and a petition from a teenager that got half a million signatures, the documentary “Bully” will receive a “PG-13” rating from the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) in time for the film’s April 13 expansion to 55 […]

More “Hunger Games” Craziness

posted by Nell Minow

It’s inevitable that any movie as high-profile as “The Hunger Games” would be grabbed for political advocacy by all sides.  My friend Rebecca Cusey writes in Patheos: It seems “The Hunger Games” is a bit of a Rorschach test for […]

“Hunger Games” Apology (sort of) from Jeffrey Wells

posted by Nell Minow

Hollywood Elsewhere’s Jeffrey Wells has conceded my points about his appalling comments on “The Hunger Games,” perhaps more than he realizes. To recap: I wrote about his offensive comments regarding the body of the movie’s lead actress, Jennifer Lawrence.  He […]

Appalling Critiques of Jennifer Lawrence’s Body in “Hunger Games”

posted by Nell Minow

Thanks very much to L.V. Anderson for a piece in Slate about truly horrifying discussions of Jennifer Lawrence’s body in reviews of “The Hunger Games.” A baffling, infuriating trend has cropped up in reviews of The Hunger Games: critics bodysnarking on […]

Mad Men-era Ads in Newsweek

posted by Nell Minow

Newsweek salutes the long-awaited return of “Mad Men” with a special issue this week, including examples of real and unabashedly sexist ads that ran in the magazine back in the 1960’s.  These are what the real Mad Men of the […]

Intro to “The Hunger Games”

posted by Nell Minow

This week’s release of “The Hunger Games” is the most anticipated film of the spring and likely to be the biggest hit since the “Twilight” series.  It is based on the first of a wildly successful trilogy of books by […]

Marketing Legos to Boys and Girls

posted by Nell Minow

Thanks to my friends at the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood for pointing me to this look at the different way Legos are marketed to boys and girls.  I love the way the website lets you make your own mash-up. […]

The B-Word on Television

posted by Nell Minow

Two new television series feature the word for a female dog in their titles. “GCB” is a Dallas-based series based on a book called Good Christian Bitches.  Don’t Trust the B– in Apartment 23 stars Krysten Ritter as a New York mean […]

Complaints about “The Lorax” from Lou Dobbs and the CCFC

posted by Nell Minow

Dr. Seuss wrote The Lorax in 1971, around the time of the first Earth Day and the creation (by Republican President Richard Nixon) of the Environmental Protection Agency.  It is the story of the “Once-ler” who chanced upon a place filled […]

Petition to give “Bully” a PG-13 Rating

posted by Nell Minow

“Bully,” which will be released on March 3o, is a powerful and critically important documentary about the tragic consequences of bullying on children and teenagers.  It can no longer be dismissed as an inevitable part of growing up or something […]

Happy Groundhog Day!

posted by Nell Minow

Bing! Ali Arikan has a brilliant assessment of “Groundhog Day” at Slant Magazine.

Rebecca Cusey Responds to Christian Complaints About Movies

posted by Nell Minow

My friend Rebecca Cusey has a very thoughtful piece on the outstanding Patheos website titled, “Christians and Movies: Recognizing the Danger Within, Not Without.”  She writes: In Matthew 15:10, Jesus states, “It is not what enters into the mouth that defiles […]

With Computer Alterations, Who Gives the Performance?

posted by Nell Minow

As we wait to see whether Andy Serkis will become the first actor to receive an acting Oscar nomination for a motion capture performance next week, this week’s release of “Haywire” raises some interesting questions about who really gives the […]

Psalm 100: Make a Joyful Noise

posted by Nell Minow

The title of “Joyful Noise,” this week’s release about a gospel choir starring Queen Latifah and Dolly Parton, comes from the King James Version of Psalm 100, one of my favorites:  Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye […]

Oscar Candidate Filmed on a Smartphone

posted by Nell Minow

The Wrap reports that a contender for this year’s Oscars is “Olive,” made entirely on a smart phone, a Nokia N8.  It stars two-time Oscar nominee Gena Rowlands and its song, by Ben Lear (son of television producer Norman Lear) […]

New to the National Film Registry: ‘Forrest Gump,’ ‘Bambi,’ ‘Stand and Deliver,’ ‘Silence of the Lambs,’ ‘The Lost Weekend,’ ‘Norma Rae,’ and More

posted by Nell Minow

Each year the Librarian of Congress announces 25 titles to be added to the National Film Registry, created in 1988 in response to Ted Turner’s controversial efforts to colorize black and white films.  It is a sort of virtual library, […]

Top 10 List for 2011

posted by Nell Minow

There were more sequels and remakes released in 2011 than ever before, but that wasn’t the only reason for feeling a sense of deja vu over the past 12 months.  This year we had two films with almost identical plots […]

Now I Am Getting Excited About ‘Avatar 2′

posted by Nell Minow

I just read something that made me very excited about James Cameron’s upcoming sequel to “Avatar.”  The first one was a leap forward in technology of 3D and motion capture (now often called “performance capture” to emphasize the contribution of […]

Spoiler Alert: What This Week’s Two Big Action Blockbusters Have In Common

posted by Nell Minow

Just in time for the holidays, two huge Hollywood action films are arriving in theaters.  One is set in Victorian times and one in present-day.  But they have more in common than mysteries, chases, explosions, trains, and meaningless after-the-colon titles. […]

Lowe’s Public Relations Mess over “All-American Muslim”

posted by Nell Minow

“All-American Muslim” is a TLC reality show about five Muslim families in Dearborn, Michigan.  According to TLC, “Each episode offers an intimate look at the customs and celebrations, misconceptions and conflicts these families face outside and within their own community.” […]

The TV Preferences of Republicans and Democrats

posted by Nell Minow

Entertainment Weekly commissioned a study showing political differences in television-watching and they are so pronounced it provides some explanation of the increasing polarization and partisanship of our political conversations.  In the early days of television, Marshall McLuhan famously called it […]

Why Fox is Wrong About the Muppets

posted by Nell Minow

Fox news caused a stir when Eric Bolling accused the new Muppet movie of promoting a left-wing agenda because the villain in the movie, played by Chris Cooper, is in the oil business. Nonsense. There’s no agenda here.  This charge […]

Shatner vs. Fisher on ‘Star Trek’ vs. ‘Star Wars’

posted by Nell Minow

Roger Ebert reports that “Star Trek” captain William Shatner and “Star Wars” princess Carrie Fisher are engaged in a battle bigger than anything involving Klingons or The Empire — the relative merits of their two franchises.  Check out the warring […]

Are You Sure She Didn’t Say “Least Fascinating?” Barbara Walters’ New List

posted by Nell Minow

Barbara Walters has announced the line-up for her annual “Most Fascinating” television show (as always, leaving one player-to-be-named-later spot at the end for a surprise).  This is the best she could do?  Pippa Middleton?  Her two achievements of 2011 were […]

Female Critics Discuss Actress Nudity

posted by Nell Minow

Three new films feature nude scenes with three young actresses not thought of as bombshells or sex symbols.  Kristen Stewart shows a bit of PG-13-rated skin in the latest”Twilight” movie, but in the R-rated “Melancholia” and the NC-17-rated “Shame” Kirsten […]

Great Reading for Movie Fans

posted by Nell Minow

Take some time this long weekend to enjoy some of the best-ever writing about making movies, assembled by Slate in conjunction with the fine folks at Longform.org.  Truman Capote profiles Marlon Brando.  Hippies make “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” for $60,000. […]

A Trip to the Moon

posted by Nell Minow

This week’s release of “Hugo,” based on The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick, is inspired by the films of George Méliès, the French magician-turned-filmmaker who pioneered the field of special effects.  “A Trip to the Moon,” made in […]

The End of Film?

posted by Nell Minow

New York Times movie critic A.O. Scott has a very thoughtful essay about the transition from movies on film to digital images and the perennial question, “are the movies today as good as they used to be?” Scott writes about the […]

New Study on Children’s Increasing Immersion in Media

posted by Nell Minow

How families use media and what it means for kids’ health and well-being is the subject of Zero to Eight: Children’s Media Use in America, the first study by Common Sense Media’s new Program for the Study of Children and […]

How Companies Get Kids Hooked on Brands

posted by Nell Minow

The headline is inflammatory but the facts are truly disturbing.  Business Insider’s slideshow on how companies get kids hooked on brands starts, believe it or not, prenatally, and continue through “alca-pop” candies and tobacco companies’ 18th birthday gifts to teens.

The Appeal and Frustration of Ambiguous Movie Endings

posted by Nell Minow

I like Ann Hornaday’s piece in the Washington Post about ambiguous endings. In “The Film Snob’s Dictionary,” writers David Kamp and Lawrence Levi cheekily chart out the differences between Movies and Films (“It’s a Movie if it’s black-and-white because it’s […]

Everything You Need to Know About Zombies

posted by Nell Minow

This must have been a lot of fun to do!  Dan Kois put together a terrific guide to “Surviving a Zombie Attack” for New York Magazine, with all kinds of great tidbits from experts like the people behind “Walking Dead” […]

Miss Representation

posted by Nell Minow

Every parent, educator, and teenager should watch the documentary “Miss Representation,” about the way that media shapes our perceptions of what it means to be male and female.  

Do Trailers Spoil Movies?

posted by Nell Minow

My friend and fellow critic Kevin McCarthy has a blog post about a woman who filed a lawsuit accusing the “Drive” trailer of false advertising.  She claims the studio, FilmDistrict, misled her into thinking that it would be a car […]

The Pediatricians Really Mean It: No TV, Movies, or Computers for Under-Twos

posted by Nell Minow

The American Academy of Pediatrics has said it again.  They do not recommend any screen time for children under two.  They first issued this recommendation in 1999.  But in the last 12 years, family media use has skyrocketed. The temptation to […]

Tide Commercial Gets It Wrong About Moms, Daughters, and Gender Roles

posted by Nell Minow

I try to maintain a sense of humor about ads, but I really do not like the new series of commercials for Tide with people explaining how they get their clothes dirty.  I know they are intended to be funny […]

Reality TV: Pro and Con

posted by Nell Minow

“Does Reality Television Do More Harm Than Good?” Fans and foes of reality television and fans of the art of argument and persuasion of all kinds will want to tune in as the debate teams from Harvard and Columbia rev […]

Mindy Kaling on Women in Movies

posted by Nell Minow

Producer/writer/actress Mindy Kaling of “The Office” has a great piece in the New Yorker about women characters in movies. [W]hat I’d really like to write is a romantic comedy. This is my favorite kind of movie. I feel almost embarrassed […]

Network Television’s Distressing New Word

posted by Nell Minow

Years ago, “Saturday Night Live” had a funny “Wayne’s World” sketch with Bruce Willis as the high school cool kid, who appeared on the show to reveal to Wayne and Garth what the new cool insult word of the year […]

Jim Emerson Deconstructs ‘The Dark Knight’ Action Sequence

posted by Nell Minow

Jim Emerson of Indiewire takes viewers through the truck chase scene in “The Dark Knight” and explains how an action sequence works (and does not work). This is a superb lesson on visual story-telling, highly recommended.

A Treat for ‘Say Anything’ Fans — Deleted Scenes!

posted by Nell Minow

It’s the movie Entertainment Weekly called the greatest romance of the past 25 years.  Boom boxes have come and gone, but the iconic image of John Cusack holding his over his head so that Ione Skye can hear their song […]

New ‘Star Wars’ Blu-Ray Creates Controversy

posted by Nell Minow

George Lucas can’t stop fiddling with “Star Wars.” This week’s highly anticipated Blu-Ray release of Star Wars: The Complete Saga films has 40 hours of extra material, which will make the fan-boys happy, but it also tinkers with the original […]

Family Media Rules for the New School Year

posted by Nell Minow

As families get ready to start a new school year, it is a good opportunity to sit down and map out the rules for managing media, which should be posted in the kitchen and signed off on by both adults […]

Is ‘The Help’ Offensive?

posted by Nell Minow

The Help is a hit.  The book club favorite by first-time novelist Kathryn Stockett is now a box office success, with strong reviews and robust ticket sales.  Like the book, though, it is controversial.  Is it well-intentioned but insensitive for white […]

Film Stage calls ‘One Day’ Toxic

posted by Nell Minow

I did not like One Day much and neither did the audience.  The box office in its first week of limited release was under estimates.  But it really riled up Kristy Puchko of Film Stage, who called it “the most toxic […]

Who Scares the Scarers?

posted by Nell Minow

The New York Times asked people who make scary movies about the movies that scared them in a piece called What Spooks the Masters of Horror?  The answer turns out to be pretty much the same things that scare the […]

Smile of the Week: The Evolution of Dance in Movies

posted by Nell Minow

If it were up to me, every movie would have a dance sequence!  This includes some of my favorites.      

Compare the Conans

posted by Nell Minow

MSNBC has come up with a handy comparison chart showing the differences between the 1982 version of Conan the Barbarian (the character) and the updated version with “Game of Thrones’” Jason Momoa.  One big difference — Momoa does not say […]

Even More Sequels and Remakes

posted by Nell Minow

2011 has more sequels and remakes than any year in movie history but it looks like the record will be broken soon.  This year’s Smurf and Pirates of the Caribbean movies already have sequels underway.   Mike Meyers has announced […]

MPAA Willing to Consider Banning the F-Word in PG-13 Movies

posted by Nell Minow

I have consistently criticized the MPAA for allowing the F-word in a PG-13 movie.  It used to be limited to one non-sexual use of the term but now they allow it more than once in some PG-13s.  It makes no […]

The Tablet on Jewish Influences in ‘Dirty Dancing’

posted by Nell Minow

Dirty Dancing (1987) is an iconic and enormously influential film, now scheduled for a remake, directed by the choreographer of the original film.  (We will not discuss the awful sequel, though you should listen to “Wait, Wait…Don’t Tell Me’s” Peter Sagel […]

USA Today on New Techniques in Marketing to Kids

posted by Nell Minow

USA Today has an important article on new technologies for marketing to kids. With the use of new, kid-enchanting technologies, are savvy marketers gaining the upper hand on parents? Are toy marketers such as Ganz, food marketers such as McDonald’s […]

Letter to Steve Carell re ‘Crazy Stupid Love’s’ Teen Nude Photos

posted by Nell Minow

I was very pleased to hear that my friend Rev. Debra Haffner has written to producer/star Steve Carell about the scene where a 17-year-old girl gives a 13-year-old boy nude photos in “Crazy, Stupid, Love.”   This offensive scene, portraying […]

The Real Offensive Language in ‘The Change-Up’

posted by Nell Minow

Ellen Seldman, the mother of a special needs child, has written a heartfelt post for Parents.com about the offensive language in The Change-Up.  It isn’t the (constant) four-letter words or graphic sexual references she objects to.  It is the crude […]

What Facebook Does to Kids

posted by Nell Minow

Atlantic Wire has a good post on the impact of Facebook on the brains of the teenagers who use it, based on a presentation to the American Psychological Association by psychologist Larry D. Rosen’s called “Poke Me: How Social Networks Can Both […]

What to Watch for in ‘Rise of Planet of the Apes’ Reviews

posted by Nell Minow

Of course the reviews of this week’s prequel, “Rise of Planet of the Apes” will refer to the previous movies and I look forward to seeing how many references to the earlier films they find in this one.  I’m guessing […]

Joe Queenan on Movie Plots that Technology Killed

posted by Nell Minow

Brilliantly funny Joe Queenan has a great piece in The Guardian about how today’s technology would have saved some classic movie characters a lot of misery — and eliminated the plots for the movies and the enjoyment for the audiences. […]

Harry Potter and the Curse of the Non-Fair Trade Chocolate

posted by Nell Minow

The last of the Harry Potter films is out and Fandango reported over 5000 shows were sold out before opening day. It’s a likely candidate for this year’s box office champion with multi-million dollar revenues from tickets and perhaps even more from the […]

Progress in Efforts to Cut Back on Smoking in Movies for Kids

posted by Nell Minow

MedPage reports that smoking is down in movies rated G, PG, and PG-13. Overall, there were about 72% fewer on-screen appearances of smoking and tobacco products in G, PG, and PG-13 movies in 2010 than there were in 2005, according […]

What’s the Deal with All These Tree Titles?

posted by Nell Minow

Last time, it was a bunch of Nine movies.  Now for some reason we have a bunch of movies with “tree” in the title.  Here’s a quick guide to help keep them all straight. Tree of Life is the impressionistic, […]

Supreme Court: Violent Video Games Get Free Speech Protection

posted by Nell Minow

A California law that would prevent the sale of violent video games to children has been overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court.  The 2005 California law has never been enforced because it was found unconstitutional in the lower court as […]

The Role (and Roles) of Women in Film

posted by Nell Minow

Monika Bartyzel has an excellent and insightful essay on Movies.com called Girls on Film: Why Supporting Female Characters Matter. Funny men like Seth Rogen and Jason Segal act as the everyman with a witty sarcastic edge, and since men dominate […]

How to Tell If 3D is Worth the $

posted by Nell Minow

Cinema Blend has the best discussions I’ve seen about when you should pay the extra for the 3D glasses. The factors they consider include whether the movie was filmed in 3D or had the effects added in post-production, whether it […]

Thelma Adams Asks, ‘Where’s Momma?’

posted by Nell Minow

US Magazine critic Thelma Adams has a blog post about one of the most common questions I get asked: where are the parents in movies about kids?  She quotes my comments: Nell Minow, the Movie Mom, told me “This is the […]

Best Actor in the Worst Movie and More From Rotten Tomatoes — From Slate

posted by Nell Minow

Slate has taken data from Rotten Tomatoes to compute the career trajectories of actors and directors.  The results are unexpected — would anyone guess that the actor with the best reviews is….Daniel Autueil?  And the worst actress…Jennifer Love Hewitt?  I’m […]

Roger Ebert on What’s Wrong With Projectors

posted by Nell Minow

Studios spend tens of millions of dollars to get the best equipment to photograph and record the most beautiful performers wearing the most gorgeous clothes in the most spectacular settings.  And then we go to see them in a movie […]

Do You Remember a Movie About a Witch Who Makes Blueberry Pancakes?

posted by Nell Minow

If you remember seeing a movie in school about a witch who made magical blueberry pancakes, then you must be in your late 30’s or early 40’s. The New York Times has a great piece by Jennifer Mendelsohn about how […]

The Fall TV Season — Girls Gone Wild (And Retro)

posted by Nell Minow

Maureen Dowd had a good column about the upcoming fall season on network television, which features a lot of, well, let’s look at her headline: Corsets, Cleavage, Fishnets. She surmises, correctly, I believe, that the number of new shows about […]

What is ‘Real’ About Reality TV?

posted by Nell Minow

Kelefa Sanneh has a thoughtful essay in the New Yorker about “reality television,” how it developed, why it fascinates us, and how “real” it really is.  From the Loud family to “Jersey Shore,” they are based on the idea of […]

Scholastic is Selling Coal Power — to Children

posted by Nell Minow

The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood reports that esteemed publisher Scholastic is sending out “teaching materials” to schools that amounts to a commercial for coal power.  The coal industry, through the American Coal Foundation, has hired Scholastic to produce The […]

Half a Century of the ‘Vast Wasteland’

posted by Nell Minow

Fifty years ago today, my dad, Newton Minow, the 35-year old Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, spoke to the National Association of Broadcasters.  What he said was so ground-breaking and so resonant that it has been included in many […]

The Wrap Raps Another ‘White Summer’ from Hollywood

posted by Nell Minow

The Wrap notes that despite the record-smashing opening weekend for “Fast Five,” the rest of the summer movie line-up does not feature much ethnic diversity. “‘Fast Five’ is a great example of Hollywood getting it right,” Craig Detweiler, professor of film […]

Ralph Lauren Pretends His Catalog is a Book For Kids

posted by Nell Minow

Renée Loth writes in the Boston Globe this weekend about Ralph Lauren’s new “book” for children — really a thinly disguised catalog.  They’re calling it “The first ever shoppable children’s storybook.’’ “The RL Gang: A Magically Magnificent School Adventure’’ is […]

What Can We Learn from #1 Songs?

posted by Nell Minow

Jessie Rifkin listened to every number one song in the history of the pop charts, from Ricky Nelson’s “Poor Little Fool” up through this week’s “ET” by Katy Perry and wrote about it for the Washington Post.  He notes that […]

Cracked Solves Seven Movie Mysteries

posted by Nell Minow

Cracked has a funny post about what’s behind seven hotly debated movie mysteries, from what’s in “Pulp Fiction’s” briefcase to what Billy Murray whispered to Scarlett Johansson in “Lost in Translation.”  They even take on the last episode of “The […]

Interview: Morgan Spurlock of POM Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold

posted by Nell Minow

Morgan Spurlock took on fast food in “Super Size Me.”  He was funny, direct, and at times outraged as he tried to live for a month on McDonald’s “supersize” portions, and I liked his even-handedness in taking on the consumers […]

Screen-Free Week April 18-24

posted by Nell Minow

It used to be called TV-Turnoff Week but that was so 1990’s.  Now it’s Screen-Free Week — one week for families to turn off the screens and reconnect with old-fashioned in-person interaction, to look each other in the eyes, spend […]

Enough Already with ‘In the Hall of the Mountain King’

posted by Nell Minow

Indiewire has a very funny piece about the popularity — the near-ubiquity — of Edvard Grieg’s “In the Hall of the Mountain King” in movies and trailers.  Before I go any further, let’s listen to it and see if it […]

The Corporate Villain in Movies — My First Appearance on Ebert Presents

posted by Nell Minow

I was thrilled that my first appearance on Ebert Presents At the Movies was a discussion of corporate villains on screen from 1909 to the present — why they are so popular and how the portrayals have evolved to reflect […]

Morgan Spurlock’s TED Talk on Product Placement in Movies

posted by Evan Derrick

I’ll be posting an interview with Morgan Spurlock (“Super Size Me”) about his new movie on product placement soon. Here’s the talk he gave at TED about making a movie about product placement that was entirely funded by product placement. […]

Women in Media — And Media in Crisis

posted by Nell Minow

As Katie Couric leaves her pioneering role as the first women anchor of a nightly network news broadcast, it appears that she arrived just as what was once the flagship of end-of-the-day journalism was shrinking to not much more than […]

Ten Questions about Sucker Punch from Brendon Connelly

posted by Nell Minow

The always-brilliant Brendon Connelly of Bleeding Cool has ten fascinating and provocative questions for viewers of Sucker Punch. The movie has been widely derided as incoherent eye candy with only 20 percent positive reviews on Rotten Tomatoes. A typical comment […]

Interview: Steven Bingen of MGM: America’s Greatest Backlot

posted by Nell Minow

MGM: Hollywood’s Greatest Backlot is like a fabulous fairy tale, except that it really happened. Steven Bingen, Stephen X. Sylvester, and Michael Troyan have written the history of not just a magical place but a magical moment in time, when […]

The Art of the Movie Title Sequence

posted by Nell Minow

A Brief History of Title Design from Ian Albinson on Vimeo. A wonderful salute to movie titles.

Thelma Adams Takes on the Sexism in ‘Mars Needs Moms’

posted by Nell Minow

I was delighted to see US movie critic Thelma Adams go after “Mars Needs Moms” for the retro sexism of its plot. As she notes in a comment following my review, she wrote on her blog about the weirdness of […]

More Justin Bieber — For a Limited Time Only!

posted by Nell Minow

Have you seen Justin Bieber’s “Never Say Never” 3D concert film? Would you like to see more? Just three weeks after its release, Paramount is sending out a revised “fans” version so all the Be-liebers out there can see even […]

Colin Firth as Henry Higgins?

posted by Nell Minow

There are rumors that Colin Firth (“The King’s Speech,” “Pride and Prejudice,” “Bridget Jones’ Diary”) may be the new Professor Henry Higgins in a forthcoming remake of “My Fair Lady,” to be directed by Joe Wright (who directed the Kiera […]

The Art of Movie Titles

posted by Nell Minow

Salon has a fascinating interview with Matthew Cohen, an expert in movie titles. Four letters can tell you everything you need to know: “Jaws” Some other memorable one-word titles: “Titanic,” “Grease,” “Fargo,” “Elf,” “Blow,” “Amadeus,” “Goldfinger” Some movie titles use […]

People Who Cry At Airplane Movies

posted by Nell Minow

I love This American Life. This week’s episode is called “Tough Room,” and it has four stories about people who have to face and try to somehow persuade or ingratiate themselves with highly critical and skeptical crowds. But the last […]

Pioneers of Television

posted by Nell Minow

I am a big fan of the PBS series “Pioneers of Television,” and I am especially looking forward to tonight’s episode about the early days of local children’s TV featuring Willard Scott, Stan Freberg, Jim Henson, Larry Harmon (“Bozo”) and […]

The Spiritual Foundation of ‘The Company Men’

posted by Nell Minow

Be sure to take a look at this excellent interview by Dann Gire with John Wells, writer-director of “The Company Men,” about the lessons he learned from his clergyman father and how they influenced the film. When you grow up […]

Ebert: Thumbs Down on 3D, Up on Maxivison48

posted by Nell Minow

Roger Ebert says the case is closed on 3D — it can never work. He has some powerful support for his position, a letter from Walter Murch, “the most respected film editor and sound designer in the modern cinema.” Murch […]

Skins — Another Challenge for Parents of Teens

posted by Nell Minow

MTV’s latest series is Skins, an American version of a controversial British television show about teenagers and starring teenagers. It was co-created by a teenager, the son of a television writer who was challenged by his father to come up […]

Kennedy Miniseries Rejected Again

posted by Nell Minow

As the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of President Kennedy’s inauguration is celebrated in Washington this week, there are headlines in the entertainment news about a miniseries about the Kennedy family that has been pulled from the broadcast schedule. Greg […]

Slate’s Movie Club

posted by Nell Minow

Slate movie critic Dana Stevens brought together an enormously engaging and thoughtful group for the annual “movie club” round-up discussion of the year in film. Reviewing films is a lot of fun, but one of the drawbacks is that we […]

Tribute: Doonesbury’s Mom and Marshall’s Dad

posted by Nell Minow

We don’t often see death in comic strips and sit-coms. But on “How I Met Your Mother,” Marshall Erickson (Jason Segal) lost his beloved father Marvin (played by Bill Fagerbakke). And the title character in Garry Trudeau’s comic strip, currently […]

A Map of Movie Sequels

posted by Nell Minow

What’s the worst movie sequel you ever saw? I’d have to say the sequels to “Grease,” “Men in Black,” “Get Shorty,” and “The Whole Nine Yards” are tied for last place. Many thanks to my dear friend and fellow critic […]

Who Has Died Most Often On Screen? (Spoiler Alert!)

posted by Nell Minow

It’s a big moment in any movie when one of the main characters dies, whether in battle, by accident, foul play, or natural causes. The nice people at the information site ChaCha have done the math and figured out which […]

Tough Teen Girls in the Movies of 2010

posted by Nell Minow

The Washington Post’s Ann Hornaday has a terrific year-end round-up about an unusual trend in 2010 movies, tough teen girls. From gritty dramas like “Fish Tank” and “Winter’s Bone” to ultra-violent fantasies like “Kick-Ass” and “Let Me In” (both starring […]

The Biggest Movie Bad Guy of the Year: The Corporation

posted by Nell Minow

I had a lot of fun writing for BNet about why corporations were the go-to villain in the movies of 2010, from “Despicable Me” to “The Other Guys,” “Tron: Legacy,” “Resident Evil 4,” and “Inception.”

The Worst Christmas Movies

posted by Nell Minow

We’ve spent a lot of time on the best movies of the season, but like those families whose traditions include an ugly Christmas sweater competition, I want to take a moment to discuss the way that Christmas seems to inspire […]

What Movie Had the Most Mistakes in 2010?

posted by Nell Minow

Iron Man 2 has the ‘most mistakes’, according to a new poll from MovieMistakes with 46 mistakes. Runners-up included “The A-Team” as number 2, and two Leonardo DiCaprio films, “Shutter Island” and “Inception” as third and fourth place, followed by […]

More Madness from the MPAA Ratings Board

posted by Nell Minow

Two movies opening up this week get a PG rating. One is “Yogi Bear,” based on the cartoon series for children about a bear who steals picnic baskets. The other is “Tron: Legacy” a high-tech action film that involves peril, […]

PTC Report on Sexualization of Teenage Girls on Television

posted by Nell Minow

The Parents Television Council released a new report today on the portrayal of teenage girls on television. The report, ??Tinseltown’s New Target: A Study of Teen Female Sexualization on Prime-Time TV, is based on a content analysis of the most […]

Roger Ebert Cites Me in MPAA Ratings Op-Ed

posted by Nell Minow

I am honored to be mentioned in Roger Ebert’s outstanding op-ed about the MPAA ratings, and thrilled with his support for what I do. Last week, on appeal, the MPAA lowered the rating of “Blue Valentine,” a searing portrait of […]

2011 Oscar Hosts Revealed!

posted by Nell Minow

Hosting the Oscars is one of the highest-pressure jobs in show business. It is also one of the most thankless. Hosting the show requires months of preparation and the ability to ad lib on the spot. We expect Oscar hosts […]

A Black Heathcliff in the New ‘Wuthering Heights’

posted by Nell Minow

One of the most famous characters in literature is the brooding Heathcliff in Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights. Since its publication in 1847 it has captured the imagination of generations of readers with its story of a tragic love affair in […]

Happy 350 to Film Threat’s ‘Bootleg Files’

posted by Nell Minow

Congrats to Phil Hall on the 350th in his “Bootleg Files” series on the Film Threat website. His tributes to the off-beat and off-the-beaten track gems is a pleasure to read and a great source of ideas for not-on-Netflix treasures […]

More on the MPAA’s Bad Call on ‘The King’s Speech’

posted by Nell Minow

From the Hollywood Reporter with more on the controversy over giving “The King’s Speech” an R rating for a brief scene of bad language (in a vocal exercise): “Another Bad Call from the MPAA,” lamented influential Movie Mom blogger Nell […]

Another Bad Call from the MPAA

posted by Nell Minow

The ultra-violent “Saw 3D” gets an R. The ultra-explicit and disgusting “Jackass 3D” gets an R. But how does “The King’s Speech” get an R? This is an acclaimed historical drama about the King of England (Colin Firth) who has […]

Do the GQ ‘Glee’ Photos Go Too Far?

posted by Nell Minow

Katie Couric and the Parents Television Council are objecting to a sexy photo spread of “Glee” cast members in GQ Magazine. While Finn (Cory Monteith) is fully clothed, his cast mates Rachel (Lea Michelle) and Quinn (Diana Agron) (both 24 […]

Interview: Stephen Simon of ‘The Old Hollywood’

posted by Nell Minow

Stephen Simon grew up in Hollywood, the son of a movie director and studio executive. He worked in movies as well, including films with Tom Cruise, Madonna, and Christopher Reeve. His new book is The Old Hollywood and he was […]

Violence in Movies Shown on Airplanes

posted by Nell Minow

The only truly captive audience for movies is airline passengers. You do not have to put on the headset, but if you are disturbed or offended by what is on screen there is no way to turn it off. Airlines […]

Don’t Trust the Toy Lady

posted by Nell Minow

The LA Times reports that back to school reports on a number of national and local newscasts have included commentary from “a young mother and ‘toy expert’ named Elizabeth Werner,” described as “perky and positive-plus” in her demonstration of seven […]

Teen Sex in the Movies — What Has and Hasn’t Changed

posted by Nell Minow

This week’s releases include two films different in tone and style but both about the same time-honored subject of teenagers and sex. Every generation of teens thinks it invented sex and every generation of novelists and film-makers finds some new […]

What’s the Future of 3D?

posted by Nell Minow

“Avatar” comes back to the screen this week in 3D IMAX only (with nine new minutes) and box office returns are inflated with 3D glasses surcharges. Theater owners like 3D because of the extra charges and the push it gives […]

Reduced Smoking in Hollywood Movies

posted by Nell Minow

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a government agency, has listed cigarettes in movies as a key factor in teen smoking. The Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences has said that studies show a clear […]

Decode Scott Pilgrim’s Inside Jokes

posted by Nell Minow

I’ve been hoping someone would do this — Moviefone has found 30 references to games, music, and pop culture in “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World.” Any that they missed?

Life After Divorce: The Movie Version

posted by Nell Minow

As “Eat Pray Love’s” saga of Elizabeth Gilbert finding herself after a devastating divorce comes to theaters, Slate has a terrific gallery of classic post-divorce movie moments, with women signaling their liberation through dancing, revenge, substance abuse — and of […]

Why Does Every Trailer Use the Same Songs?

posted by Nell Minow

Ranker has a great list of the most over-used songs in movie trailers. I’d add “Bad to the Bone” and “Carmina Burana.” If you ever get stuck trying to identify a naggingly familiar song in a movie trailer, check Soundtrack.net, […]

Movie Blogs: Best of the 80’s and You Pick the Classics

posted by Nell Minow

On The 80’s Movie Project you can weigh in with your thoughts on the best, the worst, and the most outrageous from the decade that included “American Gigolo,” “Anaimalymics,” and “Every Which Way You Can.” And Baltimore Examiner movie critic […]

What’s a Gaffer and Who’s the Best Boy?

posted by Nell Minow

Do you read the end credits when you watch movies? Ever wanted to know what the gaffer and best boy do? Mental Floss has a great diagram of a movie set with definitions of all of the different jobs.

Protest of MPAA Rating for New Holocaust Film

posted by Nell Minow

“A Film Unfinished” is a new Holocaust documentary featuring never-before-shown footage from the Warsaw Ghetto. The MPAA has given it an “R” rating for “disturbing images of holocaust atrocities including graphic nudity.” This means that no one under 17 can […]

Harper’s: The Worst Movie Ever?

posted by Nell Minow

There are a lot of contenders for the title of Worst Movie Ever. But clearly one of the most popular is the 2003 film, “The Room,” written by, directed by, and starring Tommy Wiseau, now a cult favorite at midnight […]

What the Well-Dressed Villain Is Wearing

posted by Nell Minow

The Daily Beast has a great gallery of villain fashion. Sean Macaulay writes very perceptively about what we learn from the way the bad guys dress. The key to any great supervillain–and why we secretly like them–is that they are […]

Comic-Con: Etc. and Misc.

posted by Nell Minow

I saw Gamer Grub, a specially designed “performance” snack for gamers that won’t leave crumbs on the keyboard or make their fingers sticky. A lot of people were walking around with dripping wounds on their faces. It turned out to […]

How Did Old Spice Get So Cool?

posted by Nell Minow

How do you advertise a scent on television? And how do you make a product that was around in your grandfather’s era and has no connection to a celebrity or fashion label seem cool? You do it with charm, wit, […]

After You’ve Seen ‘Inception’ (Spoiler Discussion)

posted by Nell Minow

For those who have seen “Inception” and want to hear some other people think it through, listen in to this discussion with Matt Atchity (Editor-In-Chief, Rottentomatoes.com) and Christy Lemire (AP). And if you want more — check out the Daily […]

Interview: Lionel Chew of ‘long-distance princess’

posted by Nell Minow

This isn’t the way he envisioned using his Ph.D. in Sociology from Stanford. But after deciding he wasn’t going to be an academic after all, Lionel Chew brought his knowledge of sociology into the making of the feature film “long-distance […]

Why ‘The Last Airbender’ Will Be Considered a Classic in 30 Years

posted by Nell Minow

What did you love when you were 12?

Is It Too Late for James Bond?

posted by Nell Minow

It sounded promising, with Sam Mendes (“American Beauty”) as director and Peter Morgan (“Frost/Nixon” and “The Queen”) as writer, with Daniel Craig returning and, perhaps most intriguingly, Oscar-winner Rachel Weisz as the villain. But the status of the next James […]

Teen Girl Magazine Tips — And a Girl Who Is Living By Them

posted by Nell Minow

Eight years ago, I wrote an article for the Chicago Tribune about magazines for teen girls. Like Cosmo Girl, Twist, Teen and other magazines aimed at teenage girls, Seventeen strikes an uneasy balance between being empowering and being trashy. This […]

A Useless and Stupid Product for Expectant Mothers

posted by Nell Minow

Children should be exposed to music as early and as often as possible and there is nothing wrong with pregnant women doing the best they can to surround themselves with soothing and beautiful sounds for their own benefit and the […]

Can Drunkenness Be Funny Anymore?

posted by Nell Minow

One of the many unpleasant elements of The Killers was the light-hearted portrayal of one of the main characters as a substance abuser. Catherine O’Hara plays the mother of Katherine Heigl’s character. Her role is one drunk joke after another. […]

Best Movies of All Time: The Chart

posted by Nell Minow

This chart by David Honnorat is an astonishingly elegant display of classic movies. (Click on the link in the last sentence for a larger view.)

Should White Actors Play Non-White Characters?

posted by Nell Minow

The LA Times writes about what writer Chris Lee calls a “whitewash,” with all major parts in two high-budget, high-profile films set in the Mideast played by Caucasian performers. None of its principle cast members are of Iranian, Middle Eastern […]

Shrek Sells Out

posted by Nell Minow

I loved the new Shrek Forever After movie. But I was very sorry to see that the lovable big green ogre is not just living happily ever after over in Far Far Away. He is all over the mall selling […]

More Bad Language Goes Mainstream

posted by Nell Minow

I have written before about the coarsening of language in the media, which continues to concern me. Two recent examples are in the titles of upcoming releases. While the movie and television series are not intended for children, I wonder […]

Christian Toto on Movie Cliches He’d Like to Ban

posted by Nell Minow

My friend and fellow critic Christian Toto has a blog post about three movie cliches he’d like to ban from all future movies. # The ambivalent hit man: Yes, “The Matador” gave Pierce Brosnan one of his meatiest film roles. […]

Movies Made By Sons About Their Dads

posted by Nell Minow

Two small independent films opened up in New York this week that are both labors of love based on the dysfunctional fathers of the film-makers. One is “Touching Home” with Ed Harris as an alcoholic father of twin sons who […]

How to Protect Yourself From Facebook’s New ‘Privacy’ Changes

posted by Nell Minow

Facebook has made some new changes that make your information much more vulnerable to public display. Please take a few moments to watch this video from Connect Safely and share it with your middle and high school children to make […]

The Evolution of Movie Soundtracks

posted by Nell Minow

The New Yorker has a fine article by music critic Alex Ross about soundtrack composer Michael Giacchino, who won an Oscar for his lilting but wistful score for “Up” and who also writes the evocative music for the television series, […]

Ebert’s Recommendation — Better than 3D

posted by Nell Minow

Roger Ebert, who recently took on some controversy when he said that video games could not be art, has kicked it up a notch with a piece in Newsweek called “Why I Hate 3D (And You Should Too).” 3-D is […]

Two PG Romances in One Week

posted by Nell Minow

We don’t get many PG movies designed for general audiences but this week we have two, both sweet romances, “Letters to Juliet” and “Just Wright.” The first is the story of girl about to be married who helps a woman […]

Supreme Court to Rule on Limiting Sales of Violent Games to Kids

posted by Nell Minow

Is there a First Amendment right to sell violent video games to children and teenagers? The California legislature said no. They enacted a law imposing a fine of up to $1000 on retailers who sell violent games to anyone under […]

A New Gay Friend for Archie, Betty, Veronica, and Jughead

posted by Nell Minow

There’s a new kid at Riverdale High School. Archie Comics has announced that this fall Kevin Keller will join the gang at the maltshop and become the series’ first openly gay character. “The introduction of Kevin is just about keeping […]

Why Are You Seeing That Trailer Before This Movie?

posted by Nell Minow

I often hear complaints from movie-goers who think that the trailers run before the movies they bought tickets to see are inappropriate. This has become even more important now that the MPAA has made the rules about content in trailers […]

Microsoft Withdraws Sexting Video

posted by Nell Minow

Good work from Common Sense Media, whose complaint led to Microsoft’s decision to pull an promotional video that seemed to endorse “sexting.” An ad for Microsoft’s new KIN smartphones showed a guy reaching the phone up inside his t-shirt to […]

The Brat Packers Are In Their 40’s

posted by Nell Minow

A new book by Susannah Gora takes a look at the group of young actors who appeared in the John Hughes films that seemed to define a generation — and certainly changed the way teenagers were portrayed on screen. You […]

Peepfest 2010

posted by Nell Minow

I am besotted with the annual Washington Post Peeps contest, where artists and craftspeople and peep-lovers of all kinds are invited to create dioramas featuring the pink and yellow and blue marshmallow bunnies and chicks that are sold every spring […]

More on Red-Band Trailers

posted by Nell Minow

Brooks Barnes writes in today’s New York Times about the increased accessibility of “red-band” trailers, movie previews that contain R-rated material. Over the last two years, movie marketers have flooded the Web with R-rated video ads known as “red band” […]

Is it Time for Another Captain America?

posted by Nell Minow

This week’s announcement that Chris Evans (“The Fantastic Four”) will star in a new “Captain America” movie makes this the right moment to think about the history and meaning of the character. Never as iconic and popular as Superman or […]

NPR’s Romantic Comedy Don’t List

posted by Nell Minow

Linda Holmes of NPR’s great Monkey See blog has a list of tired cliches that should be barred from all future romantic comedies because they are not funny and they are not romantic. Not coincidentally, several are featured in the […]

World Premiere of ‘Wimpy Kid’ at Alexandria’s Riverside School

posted by Nell Minow

Alexandria, Virginia’s Riverside Elementary School hosted the World Premiere of “Diary of a Wimpy Kid,” thanks to a winning entry selected out of 5000 competing schools in a competition to host the premiere for their students. The school safety patrols […]

Botox vs. Acting

posted by Nell Minow

Amanda Fortini writes in New York Magazine about the impact that Botox and other beauty treatments have had on acting. What is a star to do when deciding between a face that can show emotion and one that looks younger […]

FCC Chairman’s Promises to Children

posted by Nell Minow

On March 12, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski announced recommendations in the National Broadband Plan to benefit children and their families and initiatives to foster the Commission’s Children’s Agenda for Digital Opportunity to help children and empower parents. “Children […]

Is it All Right for Children to Use Bad Words On Screen?

posted by Nell Minow

As I have already discussed, the red-band (mature material) trailer for the upcoming film “Kick-Ass” has an 11-year-old character played by a now-13-year-old girl using extremely crude language. The New York Times article focused on the accessibility of the trailer […]

Red-Band Trailers Reach Underage Audiences

posted by Nell Minow

I am quoted in Brooks Barnes’ New York Times article today about the “red-band” trailer for a new superhero movie called “Kick-Ass.” Red-band trailers contain R-rated material and are supposed to be shown to adults only. In theaters, they are […]

‘Nerd’ Barbie?

posted by Nell Minow

While Ken is walking his little dog in Palm Beach, Barbie is crunching code as a computer engineer. Wired reports that the latest Barbie has a laptop and a bluetooth earpiece. Created in cooperation with the Society of Women Engineers […]

Vanity Fair’s Whites Only Hollywood Cover

posted by Nell Minow

I look forward to Vanity Fair’s annual Hollywood issue every year. It always has fabulous photos of today’s top talent, often in salutes to some of the classic movie stars of the past. And it always has a selection of […]

Rom-Com Don’t List from EW

posted by Nell Minow

Entertainment Weekly has a list of romantic comedy cliches it wants to ban forever from the wisecracking best friend to the adorably uncontrollable dog, the trying-on-clothes montage, the makeover, the chase through the airport (have they ever heard of cell […]

What Makes a Movie Romantic?

posted by Nell Minow

Many thanks once again to Cheryl Anderson of the Appleton Post-Crescent for interviewing me, this time about what makes movie romantic. “There are so many movies about love for the same reason there are so many movies about lost treasure […]

The Women At Disney Studios

posted by Nell Minow

Vanity Fair’s annual Hollywood issue has an article by Patricia Zohn about the “ink and paint” women who worked on Disney’s classic animated films. Much has been written about the prodigiously talented men who brought Snow White, Pinocchio, Fantasia, Bambi, […]

Ghost Daughters in Three New Movies

posted by Nell Minow

Three recent movies in different genres have had one thing in common — fathers who interact with the ghosts of their dead daughters. In the historical drama “Creation,” Charles Darwin sees the ghost of his daughter as his struggle to […]

What Are Movie Critics For?

posted by Nell Minow

Thanks to the Online Film Critics Society for including my thoughts in their round-up of commentaries about what movie critics are for. The question was “Do critics do anything nowadays except give out awards? What is the purpose of a […]

The Battle Over Super Bowl Ads

posted by Nell Minow

On February 7, the Saints will take on the Colts in Super Bowl XLIV. And the ads are as high-profile as the game. Companies and groups must pay CBS more than $2 million in addition to the cost of producing […]

How Can Parents Manage the Media Deluge?

posted by Nell Minow

The New York Times has a good discussion of the Kaiser M2 Report about kids and (multi) media. “As parents, we’ve spent nearly 50 years trying to keep children away from media, and look where they are now: swimming in […]

Movie Prognostications: How Well Can Movies Predict the Next Decade?

posted by Nell Minow

Rotten Tomatoes has a great list of movies about the future. According to the movies, this year we should be traveling to the moons of Jupiter (“2010″), having Charlize Theron (and don’t forget the woman with hands for feet) in […]

What Can We Learn from ‘The Office?’

posted by Nell Minow

NPR asks whether “The Office” should be used in HR training. Though the show is clearly a caricature, there are grains of truth in the dysfunctional conflicts that drive its humor, says Sheri Leonardo, senior vice president for human resources […]

Black Love Stories in Film: Panel Discussion

posted by Nell Minow

“Black Love Stories in Film: Where is the Romance?” The Kansas City public library is hosting a panel discussion with filmmakers, actors and industry insiders to discuss Hollywood’s take on black love in movies. This panel discussion draws from contemporary […]

Kids and Media: Kaiser’s M2 Report

posted by Nell Minow

The highly respected Kaiser Foundation has issued the third in its series of reports on children and media, Generation M2: Media in the Lives of 8-18-year-olds. They found that with technology allowing nearly 24-hour media access as children and teens […]

Interview: Bruce Faulk of ‘Soul of the Church’

posted by Nell Minow

I was able to speak to the man behind the Black History Collection: Soul of the Church DVD, Bruce Faulk, who assembled a treasure trove of gospel performances into this stirring and inspirational collection. It even includes some of the […]

More Thoughts on ‘Avatar’ (Spoiler Alerts)

posted by Nell Minow

Many thanks for the very thoughtful comments on my post about the commentary that “Avatar” has inspired. I was particularly glad to be directed to some thoughtful assessments of the film I had not seen. Thanks to Sheherazahde and Cheryl […]

Movies Increasingly Feature Spiritual Themes

posted by Nell Minow

In today’s Washington Post, Robert W. Butler writes about the increasing number of wide-release films that include themes of religion and spirituality. It’s everywhere at the multiplex these days: religion. Or if that word makes you uncomfortable, you can go […]

Can You Guess the Celebrity Voice?

posted by Nell Minow

Slate has a great collection of ads with celebrity voiceovers. How many can you identify?

Is ‘Avatar’ Anti-Christian? Anti-Corporate? Anti-Development?

posted by Nell Minow

“Avatar,” which set a record as the biggest-budget movie of all time has also set a box-office record with a total world gross in its first two weeks of $617.3 million. It is a technological wonder, seamlessly combining live action […]

Teaching Kids Critical Thinking Skills — With Holiday Ads

posted by Nell Minow

Ellen Besen has written a worthwhile article about how to use the avalanche of holiday season advertising to give children some important lessons in media literacy and critical thinking. Many thanks to Ms. Besen for permission to reprint it here. […]

MPAA to Revise Rules

posted by Nell Minow

Following my phone meeting with Joan Graves and Marilyn Gordon of the MPAA and the FTC’s report (citing my article) criticizing the motion picture industry, the MPAA has informed me that it will be making some changes to its rules […]

Is Target the New Scrooge?

posted by Nell Minow

Is anyone as bothered by the Target Christmas commercials as I am? They have a series of commercials reflecting tighter economic times by emphasizing their low prices. Great, I’m on board with that. But these commercials would be sour and […]

FTC: Movie Industry Fails at Protecting Kids from Violent Content

posted by Nell Minow

Last week, the Federal Trade Commission issued its seventh report in ten years on the marketing of violent media to children. While the movie industry is doing better at preventing children who are underage from buying tickets to R-rated films […]

‘Twilight’ Thoughts from Trevor Butterworth in Forbes

posted by Nell Minow

Thanks to Trevor Butterworth for including some of my thoughts in his perceptive essay on the appeal of the “Twilight” series. As the critic Nell Minow put it to me, there were any number of reasons for sex not to […]

More About the AMA Performances

posted by Nell Minow

Some commenters have criticized my post about Adam Lambert’s performance at the American Music Awards because they say I should not have singled him out. There were other provocative and even outrageous musical numbers in the show. That’s a fair […]

Previous Posts

Trailer: Disney's Descendants With the Next Generation of Villains
Coming to the Disney Channel this summer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t4UUQqefajc& ...

posted 3:47:40pm Apr. 27, 2015 | read full post »

Men in Suits: Costume Designers Talk about "Scandal," "Mad Men," and More Suit-Wearing Characters on TV
The women's clothes get all the attention, but for a costume designer -- and for the actor -- a suit is just as important. Indiewire ...

posted 3:27:23pm Apr. 27, 2015 | read full post »

Interview: Matt Mamula of Celebrity Impersonator Documentary "Just About Famous"
Matt Mamula co-directed "Just About Famous," the very entertaining new documentary about celebrity impersonators. He generously took time to talk to me about the unexpected opportunities that open up when someone looks like someone who becomes ...

posted 3:59:51pm Apr. 26, 2015 | read full post »

Interview: Barak Goodman of "Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies"
Director Barak Goodman talked to me about his superb series for PBS, Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies, now available on DVD. The series is produced ...

posted 3:55:04pm Apr. 26, 2015 | read full post »

Creativity Conference 2015: Nancy Pelosi, Snoopy, and Drones with GoPros
I had so much fun at last year's Creativity Conference that I could not imagine how they could top it this year, but they succeeded. This is ...

posted 3:07:48pm Apr. 26, 2015 | read full post »

Advertisement


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.