Miss Sogyny by Any Other Name: No Good Deed, reviewed.

no-good-deed-taraji-idris

Stars/executive producers Idris Elba & Taraji P. Henson should know better.

The thrice-delayed, not-screened-for-critics thriller No Good Deed opened at No. 1 this weekend. Box Office Mojo reports its audience was 60 percent female and 59 percent over age 30. I’m an over-30 straight white dude, so WTF do I know, but to me the film — which was written by a white woman and directed by a white guy — felt incredibly insulting to its target audience of black women. In my Village Voice review, I tried to unpack the cynical, unkind assumptions it makes about the primary demographic paying to see it. Without making the piece as much of a drag to read as the movie was to watch.

I Don’t Think You’re Ready for This Vile Jelly: King Lear and Spark, reviewed.

Joseph Marcell as King Lear in the Globe's touring production.

Joseph Marcell as King Lear.

My review of the Globe Theater’s stripped-down touring production of King Lear – the play that inspired Ira Glass to proclaim “Shakespeare sucks”! — is in today’s Washington City Paper. I also reviewed Theatre Alliance’s production of Caridad Svich’s Spark.

FURTHER READING: I reviewed Synetic Theatre’s wordless King Lear in 2011. And I interviewed Ira Glass, who was and remains one of my heroes, in April 2008.

Cruel to Be Kind: The Homestretch, reviewed.

Roque (center), one of the three subjects of "The Homestretch," is too lucky to make a good poster child for homeless youth.

Roque (center), one of the three subjects of “The Homestretch,” is too lucky to make a good poster child for homeless youth.

Here’s my review of the disappointing Kartemquin Films’ documentary The Homestretch for The Dissolve. I made a boneheaded mistake in the version of this where I filed wherein I ascribed the phrase “cruel to kind” to Nick Lowe, not to Hamlet — even though I’d already referenced Hamlet earlier in the review, and in fact, the other piece I filed the day I filed this one was a review of King Lear. Embarrassing. Editors sometimes save your neck.

The Lion in Winter: The November Man, reviewed.

Pierce Brosnan in "The November Man."Did you happen to notice that the 12-year interval between The November Man, which I review for NPR today, and Brosnan’s final appearance as James Bond, 2002’s (lousy) Die Another Day, matches the span of time that elapsed between Sean Connery’s final “official” Bond performance, in 1971’s (lousy) Diamonds  Are Forever, and his return in 1983’s out-of-canon Never Say Never Again?

Well, I did. I also note that it was during the Brosnan era (1995-2002) that the Bond flicks ceased to be early summer releases and started coming out in November. That’s got nothing at all to do why this thing is called The November Man, but it’s a better rationale than the one character actor Bill Smitrovich, whom I recall so fondly from Michael Mann’s 1960s-set 1980s cop show Crime Story, gets to articulate in the movie.

 

 

A Matter of Wife and Death: Shining City and Molly, reviewed.

My reviews of Scena Theatre’s repertory of Irish playwright Conor McPherson’s acclaimed Shining City and the world premiere of George O’Brien’s Molly are in today’s Washington City Paper. You are alerted.

The Spirit of 77: To Be Takei, reviewed.

Hikaru Sulu and George Takei at Midtown Comics in Manhattan.

I am acquainted through DC theatre with Marc Okrand, the man who developed the Klingon language to for Paramount Pictures. I was surprised to seem him make a very brief appearance in Jennifer M. Kroot’s documentary To Be Takei, which I reviewed for The Dissolve.

Hikaru Sulu and George Takei at Midtown Comics in Manhattan.

Bulgarian Holiday: The Expendables 3, reviewed.

Expendables 3I reviewed The Expendables 3 for NPR, because their audience demanded it.

This movie made me weirdly nostalgic for the days when martial artists or athletes like current MMA champ Ronda Rousey or retired MMA fighter Randy Couture might be deemed worthy of their own low-budget action flicks. No, I can’t explain, really.