Does ‘La La Land’ Deserve the Hype?

The emotional payoff at the end of the La La Land—which just won a Golden Globe for Best Musical or Comedy (along with six other awards, including Best Screenplay)—could have been huge. Many of the elements for a powerful climax are there: rich cinematography, good actors, and a steady and talented director. There’s only one … Continued

Entertainment, Movies

Finally, a Movie that Gets Romance Right: “La La Land”

The new movie La La Land is hoovering up nominations this awards season. Critics are cheering its stars, Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling, and it’s an event whenever Hollywood makes another movie musical. But that’s not why people should rush out to see it. Director Damien Chazelle (Whiplash) delivers the most unabashedly romantic movie in … Continued

Entertainment, Movies


Hamilton or “Hamilton”?

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve heard of the award-winning hip-hop Broadway musical about the Founding Fathers, Hamilton.  Evidently a New York Democratic Congressional candidate, Oliver Rosenberg, has heard of it too. During a debate on the Brian Lehrer show on WNYC this week, Rosenberg quoted Alexander Hamilton to the effect of: “This is … Continued

Entertainment

‘The Producers,’ the Swastika, and the Tyranny of Feelings

I found it encouraging to learn that students at Tappan Zee High School in Orangetown, New York recently chose to put on Mel Brooks’ hilarious satire The Producers as a school play. An excellent, bold choice. If you are tragically unfamiliar with it, the comedy centers on two theater producers who stage an intentional flop … Continued

Culture

The 4 Reasons Aaron Burr Loses in Broadway’s ‘Hamilton’

The loudest buzz on Broadway this season is for Hamilton, Lin-Manuel Miranda’s musical about the Founding Father whose face graces the $10 bill (at least for the time being). The show sold hundreds of thousands of tickets before it opened, bringing in about $30 million in advance sales. The Hamilton cast recording goes on sale … Continued

Culture

The Latest Victims of Political Correctness? Gilbert & Sullivan

After canceling their upcoming production of the Mikado in the face of complaints that it is racist, the New York Gilbert and Sullivan Players said that they “never intended to give offense.” If so, it is hard to understand why they were producing the Mikado in the first place. Gilbert and Sullivan operas are not exactly the … Continued

Culture


5 Modern-Day Lessons from “The Sound of Music”

It’s the golden anniversary of a piece of cinema gold: The Sound of Music. Fifty years after the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical arrived on the big screen, the Broadway hit-turned-movie retains its appeal. NBC did a made-for-T.V. remake of the hit last year featuring country music star Carrie Underwood. Lady Gaga wowed at this year’s … Continued

Entertainment, Movies