Tag Archives: Billy Crystal

Robert Guillaume: Charisma and Class

In the clip above, Robert Guillaume talks about how he struggled at first with playing Benson on the classic sitcom Soap (1977-1981). He had fought against being stereotyped as an African-American man, and now he was faced with playing a servant waiting on a wealthy, white family. He started looking for ways in the script to … Continue reading Robert Guillaume: Charisma and Class

Highlights from 88 Years of Oscars

The Oscars are on tonight, with Chris Rock as host. It’s the 88th annual event since the first Academy Awards were handed out in 1929. The “show” looked decidedly different then – it was in fact a dinner, the ceremony itself took 15 minutes and the awards had already been announced three weeks earlier. There … Continue reading Highlights from 88 Years of Oscars

Monsters University

SCHOOL NEVER LOOKED THIS SCARY. This prequel to Monsters, Inc. (2001) takes us back to school; the story has our two monstrous heroes meeting for the first time as students attending Monsters University. They take an instant disliking to each other, but are forced to work together as a team when they’re close to getting kicked … Continue reading Monsters University

The 7 Most Recent Oscar Hosts Rated

Neil Patrick Harris is hosting next year’s Academy Awards. Anyone who has seen him helm the Tonys or the Emmys knows that this is good news. I’ll soon get to why, but let us first kick off a list of who’s hosted the past seven years and how they merit:   2008: Jon Stewart – This was … Continue reading The 7 Most Recent Oscar Hosts Rated

When Harry Met Sally: It Had to Be You

CAN TWO FRIENDS SLEEP TOGETHER AND STILL LOVE EACH OTHER IN THE MORNING? Rob Reiner’s first idea for a film was rejected by Nora Ephron. They had just had a lunch meeting in New York City together with producer Andrew Scheinman. The purpose was to come up with a project, but it didn’t result in … Continue reading When Harry Met Sally: It Had to Be You

I’m Still Here

2008 was the year when Joaquin Phoenix announced to the world that he’d give up acting and become a rap artist; apparently, this was also a time when he stopped shaving and showering. Eventually, the whole thing was revealed as a stunt for this faux documentary that aims to show how artists are not allowed … Continue reading I’m Still Here

This Is Spinal Tap: Band in Need of Aid

DOES FOR ROCK AND ROLL WHAT “THE SOUND OF MUSIC” DID FOR HILLS. In 2002, This Is Spinal Tap was selected for preservation by the Library of Congress. It’s not hard to see why. The film has become a template for an entire genre of “mockumentaries” and numerous rock musicians have talked about mistaking it for a … Continue reading This Is Spinal Tap: Band in Need of Aid

The Princess Bride

IT’S AS REAL AS THE FEELINGS YOU FEEL. Once upon a time there was a Princess Buttercup (Robin Wright) who was kidnapped, but two men set out for her – her husband the Prince (Chris Sarandon) and a masked pirate (Cary Elwes) who just may be her true love. Updating fairy tales is a task fraught … Continue reading The Princess Bride

Analyze This

NEW YORK’S MOST POWERFUL GANGSTER IS ABOUT TO GET IN TOUCH WITH HIS FEELINGS.   After an attempt on his life, Mafia boss Paul Vitti (Robert De Niro) experiences anxiety attacks and forces a terrified psychiatrist (Billy Crystal) to take him on as patient. The Sopranos, which also featured a gangster in therapy, was a hit … Continue reading Analyze This

Monsters, Inc.

YOU WON’T BELIEVE YOUR EYE.   Another well-made, good-looking film from Pixar, this time about a community of monsters in a city whose power supply consists of screams from children who have encountered the monsters in their bedrooms. When a human girl accidentally winds up in the city, two of the monsters try to bring … Continue reading Monsters, Inc.

America’s Sweethearts

A COMEDY ABOUT CELEBRITY, FAMILY AND OTHER FORMS OF INSANITY.  A Hollywood publicist (Billy Crystal) tries to bring two separated movie stars (John Cusack, Catherine Zeta-Jones) together for a press junket. The cast of this comedy is filled with actual stars and it’s interesting to see the most famous of them, Julia Roberts, play a … Continue reading America’s Sweethearts