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Slate’s Compilation of Movie Scenes With Teenagers Climbing Through Bedroom Windows

posted by Nell Minow

Slate has a very funny supercut inspired by a scene in “Paper Towns,” where Cara Delevingne climbs through the window of her next door neighbor, played by Nat Wolff. Apparently every movie about teenagers features someone climbing through a window.

Movie Scenes in Grocery Stores — Featuring Macaulay Culkin, Michael Keaton, Natalie Portman, Steve Martin, Ryan Gosling, and More

posted by Nell Minow

Check out Slate’s compilation of movie scenes set in grocery stores.  It has a lot of my favorites, but leaves out this classic with Henry Fonda and Lucille Ball, from the fact-based “Yours, Mine, and Ours.”

#Notamovie on Slate’s The Gist — You Can Inspire a TMBG Song!

posted by Nell Minow

Wouldn’t you like to be immortalized with a song title for one of the coolest bands ever, They Might Be Giants? You have two more days to tweet titles of imaginary movies to @slategist using the hashtag #NotAMovie — the […]

Listen to People’s Lives: David Plotz’s Working Podcast

posted by Nell Minow

Former Slate editor David Plotz, now at Atlas Obscura, says that he is a big fan of Studs Terkel’s classic book Working: People Talk About What They Do All Day and How They Feel About What They Do. He has […]

Spoiler Special Podcast on The Boxtrolls

posted by Nell Minow

Many thanks to Dana Stevens and the Slate Spoiler Special podcast for inviting me to talk about “The Boxtrolls.”

I’m Glad to Hear I’m Not the Only One Who Had No Idea What Was Happening in “Transformers: Age of Extinction”

posted by Nell Minow

Two writers from Slate couldn’t figure it out, either.  Except that “If I’m ever in Hong Kong in the midst of an apocalyptic battle between Dinobots, Autobots, reconstituted Decepticon leaders, evil CIA agents, venal tech CEOs, and Chinese nationals conveniently […]

Slate’s New Parenting Podcast

posted by Nell Minow

I am a big fan of Slate’s podcasts, especially the Culture Gabfest, and am delighted that Dan Kois (of the excellent Book Club) is co-hosting a new one about parenting.  Kois and his co-host, Alison Benedikt, lead off with their […]

Two Thoughtful Assessments of What’s Wrong With Movies

posted by Nell Minow

I very much enjoyed Scott Nye’s article for rogerebert.com about plot holes in movies that are summerily — if not satisfyingly — dealt with via some line of dialogue. If you watch big budget entertainments, there’s no escaping these sorts […]

The Real Story: What Really Happened in Movies from “The Bling Ring” to “Dog Day Afternoon”

posted by Nell Minow

Slate has a great list of magazine articles that were turned into movies, from “Adaptation” (Susan Orlean’s “The Orchid Thief”) to the upcoming “The Bling Ring” (“The Suspects Wore Louboutins” by Nancy Jo Sales).  Take a look to find out the real […]

New Book on Bullying from Emily Bazelon — Pre-Order for Special Extras

posted by Nell Minow

Emily Bazelon’s first book, Sticks and Stones, comes out this month.  Her Slate series about bullying included illuminating research that altered the conventional narrative of some highly publicized real-life cases.  The book builds on this with new stories about kids […]

Jen Chaney on Liz Lemon and “30 Rock”

posted by Nell Minow

Two television programs with almost-identical themes premiered in the fall of 2006.  They were both behind-the-scenes shows about the writers and performers on a late-night topical sketch comedy series. One was an hour-long drama from “The West Wing’s” Aaron Sorkin, […]

Still Puzzling about “Cloud Atlas?” Here’s Some Help

posted by Nell Minow

“Cloud Atlas” is confusing, with six different stories set in six different time periods told in six different styles but with the same actors in different roles in all of them and the same themes — fighting tyranny and oppression, […]

“Sneakers” Rediscovered

posted by Nell Minow

I have fond memories of the neglected gem Sneakers, with Robert Redford as the leader of a ragtag group of quirky geniuses, written and directed by Phil Alden Robinson, who wrote “Field of Dreams.”  This has some of the same off-beat […]

New Deleted Scenes from the Original “Karate Kid”

posted by Nell Minow

One of my favorite of the Slate “Spoiler Specials” (podcast discussions designed to be heard after you have seen the film, so they can discuss spoilers) was when Dana Stevens and John Swansburg discussed the remake of “The Karate Kid.” […]

Slate Analyzes Oscar Acceptance Speeches

posted by Nell Minow

The dresses and the acceptance speeches are often more hotly debated than the awards on Oscar night.  Everyone remembers Sally Fields’ famous, “You like me!” speech and Cuba Gooding, Jr.’s impetuous, “I love you!” Jack Palance did one-handed push-ups.  Adrian […]

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. […]

It’s Not Your Daddy’s ‘Star Wars’

posted by Nell Minow

Just last week, I decided to watch the original 1977 “Star Wars” again and enjoyed it very much.  I’ve lost count of how many times I have seen it, but I can tell you that when my then-fiance and I […]

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 […]

What A Newcomer Can Do That a Star Can’t

posted by Nell Minow

Jessica Winter has a great list on Slate of breakthrough performances with an unusual focus.  I always love the thrill of discovering a new talent; it is one of the greatest pleasures the movies bring us.  But Ms. Winter makes […]

‘My Girl’ Grows Up — Anna Chlumksy in a New DC Satire

posted by Nell Minow

Slate’s Jessica Grose has a terrific interview with the wonderful Anna Chlumsky, child star of the 1991 classic “My Girl.”  Chlumsky took time away from acting to finish school and work as an editor before returning to star in this […]

Literary Video Games

posted by Nell Minow

Non-gamers tend to think of computer and video games as involving either shooting various targets, chasing some sort of prize, or some kind of dungeons and dragons role-playing. And Roger Ebert, perhaps with this idea in mind, has said that […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

Smile of the Week: Dancing in the Rain

posted by Nell Minow

Thanks to Slate’s Procrastinate Better blog for this lovely clip:

Christian Books for Young Adults

posted by Nell Minow

Ruth Graham has an excellent piece in Slate about the “surprisingly empowering guide to adolescence” found in young-adult novels from evangelical authors and publishers for a Christian audience. Created as a “safe” alternative to mainstream fiction, books for Christian girls […]

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 […]

What Does the Sound Editor Do?

posted by Nell Minow

The Oscars are about more than office pools, fashion, and celebrities. It’s also a chance to learn more about that most collaborative of art forms, the movies. It took more than 3000 people to make “Avatar,” and only a couple […]

What Happens to 3D Glasses?

posted by Nell Minow

Thanks to Slate for answering this question about recycling 3D glasses!

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?

Slate’s Tribute to the Worst Christmas Television Specials

posted by Nell Minow

Han Solo hugs Chewbacca? Fat Albert meets a baby in a sort of urban manger? He-Man learns about Christmas from two annoying little kids? But bad Christmas specials can inspire good responses. This is a classic from Tom Shales of […]

Miles Davis at the Movies

posted by Nell Minow

I love this Slate article by Kim Gittleson on the best and worst uses of the classic jazz album, Kind of Blue, by Miles Davis, in film and television. The list includes an action film with real-life jazz-lover Clint Eastwood […]

Meryl’s accents

posted by Nell Minow

Slate has put together a magnificent compilation of some of Meryl Streep’s best accents but what I think of when I watch this is the astonishing range of the performances behind them. It is almost impossible to imagine that it […]

Slate’s Proposed Future Toy-Inspired Blockbusters

posted by Nell Minow

Slate’s movie critic, Dana Stevens, invited readers to propose “Transformers”-like summer blockbusters inspired by action figures and other toys. The result was hilarious. My favorites were “Night of the Cabbage Patch Kids–This Time, Your Vegetables Will Finish You” and “Lego […]

Quote of the Week: Dana Stevens on Michael Cera

posted by Nell Minow

Dana Stevens liked “Year One” more than I did and she nailed the Black-Cera chemistry with this beautifully written assessment: [Michael Cera] has a way of stepping on the very end of Black’s lines with quickly blurted put-downs that gets […]

Mole and Fish

posted by Nell Minow

Many thanks to Dana Stevens of Slate for recommending this heartwarming little film:

‘Star Trek’ and ‘Terminator Salvation’ — Spoiler Alert Discussion

posted by Nell Minow

I love the Slate Spoiler Specials, discussions of movies for you to listen to on the way home from the theater. Because they allow the participants to include spoilers in the conversation, they are more satisfying than a review can […]

Debate: Is ‘The Reader’ Great Art or Hackneyed Tripe?

posted by Nell Minow

“Don’t Give an Oscar to ‘The Reader’” is the headline of an angry Slate essay by Ron Rosenbaum, author of Explaining Hitler: The Search for the Origins of His Evil. Rosenbaum says it is “a film in which all the […]

Slate’s Movie Club Analyzes 2008

posted by Nell Minow

Every January Slate Magazine asks some of the country’s top critics to have an exchange of emails about the year in film and reading it is like sitting in on a terrificly well-informed, lively, thoughtful, and provocative conversation about what […]

Dana Stevens on the Melancholy Beauty of the Charlie Brown Specials

posted by Nell Minow

Slate’s Dana Stevens has a lovely essay on “Why I love the melancholy Peanuts holiday specials,” in honor of a new holiday collection dvd set. Those specials–at least the big three: the Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas shows that were recently […]

Thoughts on ‘W’ as Movie, History, and Politics

posted by Nell Minow

Movie review from Dana Stevens of Slate: Neither satire nor biopic, the film is a kind of secular pageant, enacting with dogged literality the well-known stations of the cross of Bush’s life: the 40th-birthday hangover-turned-religious-conversion! The near-asphyxiation by pretzel! Mission […]

Quote of the Week: Dana Stevens on ‘Body of Lies’

posted by Nell Minow

Dana Stevens of Slate gets a little meta on “Body of Lies:” Certain moments are contractually required to happen in a movie like this: Camels will plod across the horizon as a woman’s voice wails in Arabic on the soundtrack. […]

Dennis Lim on Movie Fight Scenes

posted by Nell Minow

Anything Dennis Lim writes about movies reflects his exceptional knowledge and insight and is a pleasure to read. His latest piece is about the way fight scenes are staged in movies is terrific — and his insights are accompanied by […]

Previous Posts

Tribute: Oliver Sacks
We mourn the passing of neurologist and writer Oliver Sacks, who illuminated the workings of the brain and set an example of grace and compassion that extended to the way he shared his thoughts about his terminal diagnosis. I first learned ...

posted 9:17:46am Aug. 30, 2015 | read full post »

Three Hundred Year-Old Actors Are Still Working
Scott Feinberg talked to three actors with a combined age of 302 for The Hollywood Reporter. Patricia Morison (age 100), Norman Lloyd (age 100) and Connie Sawyer (age 102) shared memories and offered tips. All are in good health. “I ...

posted 3:32:48pm Aug. 29, 2015 | read full post »

Trailer: Youth with Michael Caine
[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-T7CM4di_0c[/youtube] Michael Caine and Harvey Keitel play friends on vacation in an elegant hotel at the foot of the Alps. Fred, a composer and conductor, is now retired. Mick, a film director, is ...

posted 3:25:22pm Aug. 29, 2015 | read full post »

Worst Accents in Movies
Thanks to Indiewire for including me in this great rundown of the all-time worst movie accents. Critics vented frustration and fury, many picking Quentin Tarantino and Dick van Dyke, but I went with two actors who played Robin ...

posted 2:13:18pm Aug. 28, 2015 | read full post »

Grandma
Lily Tomlin is cranky, feisty, tough, and utterly irresistible in this story of a grandmother who has to visit past decisions about her own life in order ...

posted 5:50:55pm Aug. 27, 2015 | read full post »

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