Friday, December 28, 2018


Happy Friday everybody! Check out my "Friday Flicks" column, on Phoenix Magazine online, featuring my review of Adam McKay's Dick Cheney biopic Vice.

Come to think of it, check out last week's column, which I neglected to post here, featuring reviews of Aquaman and Mary Poppins Returns.

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, December 18, 2018


The Phoenix Film Critics Society, of which I am always proud to point out I was a founding member, has announced our 2018 Award Winners. Peter Farrelly's Green Book had four wins, as did Alfonso Cuaron's Roma.

As always, some of the winners reflect my voting, others do not, but there are a lot of movies worth seeing among them. I was especially delighted that Bart Layton's brilliant American Animals took "Overlooked Film of the Year."

I plan to post my own Top Ten list early in the New Year.

Friday, December 14, 2018


Happy Friday everybody! Check out my Friday Flicks column, on Phoenix Magazine online, this week reviewing Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse...

...and Once Upon a Deadpool.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018


Happy Psycho Day everybody!

That's right, December 11 is the date that appears over the downtown Phoenix skyline at the beginning of the 1960 Hitchcock classic Psycho, one of my all-time favorite movies, before the camera peeks inappropriately into a window to show John Gavin and Janet Leigh sharing an afternoon tryst. The fine folks at FilmBar Phoenix, situated not far at all from the area seen in that opening shot, celebrate the auspicious occasion this evening at 7 p.m. with a showing of the film.

Check out my Phoenix Magazine column noting the event, along with my reviews of Alfonso Cuaron's superb Roma and Swimming With Men, a Britcom starring Rob Brydon.

Monday, December 3, 2018


RIP to George Herbert Walker Bush, passed on at 94.

In January of 1989, when he became the 41st President of the United States, I was living in D.C. Though I was a disappointed Dukakis supporter, my roommate Alex persuaded me that a presidential inauguration was not the sort of spectacle that came along every day, so the two of us walked, through what I recall being a fairly bitter, snowy-wet winter morning, from our apartment to the Mall to join the crowd there in front of the Capitol.

We couldn't really see much from where we were standing, though we had the satisfaction of watching the helicopter ascend and fly away, taking Ronald Reagan out of town. My fondest memory of the event, however, is of a Rastafarian-looking guy hawking pennants in the crowd by yelling "Bush! Two dollars! Bush! Two dollars!"

Though like many people I found him likable (perhaps perversely, Dana Carvey's SNL caricature made him even more so), I wasn't a fan of 41's politics. But it must be admitted that he kept his war in the Middle East relatively short and efficient, and didn't use it, or at least not too much, as a macho-nationalist psychodrama. And he signed the Americans With Disabilities Act. And by almost all accounts, he was a very nice man on a personal level. All of which is to say, in retrospect, and especially at the moment, he looks almost Lincolnesque.

Funny the stuff you remember: The evening of his inaugural, I went with my then-girlfriend to see the sci-fi horror picture DeepStar Six, in which an underwater research station is attacked by a sort of giant sea-louse. While watching it, I noticed a persistent pain in my left foot which increased considerably when I put weight on it leaving the theater. It didn't go away, and some weeks later a doctor told me I had likely given myself a stress fracture that morning on the long walk through the cold. It's bothered me, off and on, ever since, sometimes to the point of giving me a noticeable limp.

So that was my souvenir of the George H. W. Bush inauguration. And it didn't even cost me two dollars.

Saturday, December 1, 2018


Happy December everybody! Check out my "Four Corners" column in this month's issue of Phoenix Magazine, on places to eat while in the midst of holiday festivity, including my farthest-flung "corner" to date, the Lynx Lake Cafe in Prescott. Also check out my Phoenix Magazine online review of The Favourite, opening this weekend.

The Wife has done her decorating. She kept it low-key this year: