Best Grownup Flicks at Toronto Film Festival

Every September, the center of the movie world shifts from Hollywood to Toronto, where the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) showcases films ranging from small indie flicks looking for distributors to studio blockbusters making a big splash before they arrive in theaters. Crowds mob the streets of the city, jockeying for glimpses of their favorite stars and directors. Movie lovers line up for hours, hoping to nab one of the few remaining tickets for a new film. And show-biz writers …

Weekend Preview: Helen Mirren, Twisters and Ninja Turtles

Thank goodness for Helen Mirren; without her there’d be almost nothing new for grown-up movie lovers to see this weekend. Besides Dame Helen’s latest offering (The Hundred-Foot Journey), this looks like a good time to catch up on summer’s best offerings, including Get on Up, Calvary and Boyhood.   The Hundred-Foot Journey Helen Mirren is a snooty French chef; veteran Indian star Om Puri (East Is East) is the immigrant who opens an authentic Mumbai-style restaurant, replete with secret spices …

Oscar Night: Grownups Get to Stay Up Late

Remember when the movie musical was dead? Well, Sunday night’s Academy Awards telecast will be a resounding reminder that, in the immortal words of Dr. Frankenstein, “It’s ALIVE!!” Most important for grownup movie lovers, this year’s Oscar production numbers will recognize that for the past decade musicals have aimed themselves squarely at us: Les Miserables, Chicago, Hairspray, and Mama Mia! were all a far cry from the kid-centric days of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Barney’s Great Adventure. Not all …

Oscar Nominees Luncheon Could Make Irresistible TV

Of all the awards season events, the annual Academy Awards Nominees Luncheon stands out because it is a comparatively relaxed, familial affair; plus, it’s not televised. In fact, it has become a welcome respite for the anointed ones, a place where they can bond as a class while out of sight of the viewing audience (though it certainly could make an irresistible show.) Yesterday’s luncheon at the Beverly Hilton Hotel had enough star power to light up the Superdome. Denzel …

Tony Scott: A Gifted Director’s Most Thrilling Movie Moments

Tony Scott directed 16 films, including the Tom Cruise hits Top Gun and Days of Thunder, but he got little of the critical acclaim showered on Hollywood contemporaries such as Martin Scorsese, Clint Eastwood, and Steven Spielberg. Accolade-wise, he even was overshadowed by his older brother Ridley, whose trio of Academy Award nominations in the best director category amounted to three more than Tony ever got. But Scott, who died yesterday at age 68 in an apparent suicide in Los Angeles, had stellar success in …