Saving Mr Banks 2

The Shameless Propaganda of “Saving Mr. Banks”

For viewers inclined toward anti-corporate sentiment  – which is probably more than a few of you these days – Saving Mr. Banks will be an uphill climb from the start. The story itself doesn’t set off too many red flags: P.L. Travers (Emma Thompson), the author of the novel on which Mary Poppins was based,…

Big1sm

“Big” and the Body-Swap Movie Renaissance

I had a piece in The Atlantic this afternoon on Big and the other body-swap movies (Vice Versa, 18 Again!, Like Father, Like Son) of the late ’80s. Here is an excerpt: The dominant, lasting image in all these films is that of a grown man acting like a child. In Big, Vice Versa, and Like Father, Like Son, the…

Tom Hanks and Halle Berry

“Cloud Atlas” is Why I Go to the Movies

Thirteen years ago, The Matrix was released, and its themes of oppression and revolution connected deeply with critics and audiences alike. The filmmakers – siblings Andy and Lana Wachowski – were similarly oppressed by its success and have spent the last decade failing to live up to it. But now their time has come. In…

Clooney Obama

Clooney and Celebrities Try to Even the Score for Obama

George Clooney is hosting a $12 million fundraiser for President Obama’s re-election campaign. Bill Maher gave a $1 million contribution, making him the campaign’s biggest individual donor. Eva Longoria has been made campaign co-chair and is doing serious outreach to the Hispanic community. It is clear that President Obama is emphasizing celebrity support in his…

Robocop poster

Top Five Liberal Movies: Part Two

We’re counting down the Top Five Most Liberal Movies of All-Time. Click here to read about #5 and #4. But now it’s on to… 3. “The ‘Burbs” I think of 1989-1991 as Tom Hanks’ magic years – after his breakout role in “Big” and before he started to move away from comedy with “Philadelphia.” Along with “Joe…