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Stories by David Elliott

Popcorn Boy Serves Kill the Irishman, Queen to Play, and Incendies

We cull, we mull, we ponder what the god of cinema, better known as Popcorn Boy, provides us each week. Fresh from the popper: Kill the Irishman After the violent cinematic primes of Francis Coppola ...

In a Better World

In a Better World In a better world, In a Better World would not have to win the foreign film Oscar (which it did, for 2010) to get serious American attention. This is the kind ...

Paul Giamatti Win Wins

Actors are the main interest this week — Paul Giamatti, Juliette Binoche, Jake Gyllenhaal, J.K. Simmons — and we offer a farewell to Elizabeth Taylor. Win Win What law of thespian karma could explain the ...

Limitless: An Addiction Movie

Not every week brings us New York ambition mania, a new Jane Eyre, an alien invasion, and a smart vehicle for Matt McConaughey. Limitless “I took my first pill,” wrote Aldous Huxley in The Doors ...

Monks and Gods and Men

There is life after the Oscars, and it includes the San Diego Latino Film Festival. More on that, once we bring our dance card up to date: Of Gods and Men The French title is ...

David Elliott Guesses the Oscars

As a prophet, I am a dubious Nostradamus. But I will guess the Oscars. This is an itch that must be scratched. My regard for “the Academy” is much like that of nominee Melissa Leo ...

The Eagle Is Totally Masculine

My invaluable but doomed-to-be-forgotten thoughts about the Oscars must wait until the Reader before the big night on February 27. The news of this year’s San Diego Jewish Film Festival can wait until later in ...

Odd Giamatti in Barney’s Version

Oscar nominations were announced Tuesday. I raise a tiny toast, a demitasse of delight about The King’s Speech. I could also proliferate some prose about excellent talents doomed not to enter the magic circle of ...

Flee the Limelight of the Golden Globes

The awards season swaggers on, but I shall refrain from commenting on the 68th Golden Globes, held last Sunday. Let us flee the limelight: Inspector Bellamy In the great harvest of film exploration and innovation ...

The Movieholic Grind: David Elliott’s Top 10 Movies of 2010

Most movie critics feel compelled to draw up an annual list. A few years ago, I was amused when Roger Ebert complained that list-making has become trivialized — Roger has shoveled critical coals into the ...

Movies in the Great Recession

During the Great Depression, films were good at lifting spirits. Quite often, life at the movies really was like a bowl of cherries. Cherries included W.C. Fields, the Marx Brothers, Bette Davis, Mickey Mouse, Mae ...

How Do You Know, a Plasma-Screen Diversion

Confronting the multiplex tree of holiday goodies, I hang some critical tinsel, if not very much good news: How Do You Know Reese Witherspoon is now a womanly 34. Paul Rudd is 41, Owen Wilson ...

Black Swan Gets a Black Spot

In Hollywood terms, Christmas is, like the Golden Globes, only a glittering harbinger of the Oscars. With the gifts starting to pile up, we venture boldly: The King’s Speech As masters of speech, British actors ...

Harry Potter: Anything Goes

Movies invade us, and we invade them. It’s a personal transaction. When the Harry Potter film series launched, my children were close to the ages of kid Harry and his new chums at the Hogwarts ...

David Elliott’s Declaration of Pleasure

Duncan Shepherd filled this column for 38 years. I step in with gratitude (he asked) and with serene confidence that I will not be writing in 2048. “Style,” said Susan Sontag, “is the principle of ...

A Chat About Lemon Grove Kid Dennis Hopper

Local Boy Makes Good, Goes Bad, Makes Good Again

Of course, he didn’t stay here. Most likely, you wouldn’t either, not if you were young and ambitious and living a two-hour drive up the freeway to get to Hollywood. Not if you’d grown up ...

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