David Thomson

HBO's Creepy and Revealing Take on Hitchcock
October 23, 2012

"The Girl" is like a real-life version of "Vertigo": it's about a man who falls in love with an actress and tries to remake her.

American Movies are Not Dead: They are Dying
September 14, 2012

Do American movies still aspire to greatness?

There Will Be Dud: Paul Thomas Anderson’s First Mediocre Movie
September 14, 2012

I wanted "The Master" to be great. Instead, it's a pretentious dud.

A Small Norwegian Film and the Critic Who Praised It
September 12, 2012

"Oslo, August 31st" is a film in love with life and light and faces, and it just came out on DVD.

‘Lawless’ is ‘Bonnie and Clyde’-Lite
September 03, 2012

"Lawless" is an excuse to round up some attractive actors and let them loose. That doesn't mean it's not worth seeing.

The Riddle of Tony Scott
August 27, 2012

If anyone ever said they don’t make movies the way they used to in the days of John Wayne, you could turn to Tony Scott for refutation.

A Serial Killer Movie You Can’t Watch in America
August 24, 2012

It is called The Black Panther, and for the moment at least it cannot be seen in America. I daresay it deserves another title, now, one that avoids suggestions of horror or intimations of radical black politics. There is horror in this movie, though our standards for that genre have changed so much since 1977, when the film very briefly opened in Britain.

Magic Matthew: McConaughey's Journey From Slacker to Darkness
August 14, 2012

"Killer Joe" is a terrible film, but it marks the latest in a year of great performances from Matthew McConaughey.

The Inscrutable Life and Death of Marilyn Monroe
August 06, 2012

Fifty years ago, late on August 4 or in the early hours of August 5—so little can be said of her with certainty—Marilyn Monroe died, and began her life in legend. This was only 50 years ago, in Los Angeles, when she was a very important if vague person who may have known even more important persons. There were doctors in attendance, and then coroners; there were police investigations. The world decided it was shocked and stricken by the sudden departure of the 36-year-old, yet not surprised.

Was This the Most Dangerous Film in American History?
July 30, 2012

One of the puzzles facing the film historian (amateur or professional) occurs when a child climbs upon the parental knee and asks, “Well, Dad, what was the black list?” The parent struggles to explain that, once upon a nervous time, the Hollywood movie was said to be rife with un-American suggestions and the energetic insinuation of socialist alternatives. The child blinks, and says, “Father, isn’t that preposterous?

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