Wartime Precedent

November 1, 2012

Director Ridley Scott’s award-winning film ‘Black Hawk Down’ was based on a distinguished nonfiction book entitled ‘Black Hawk Down: A Story of Modern War’ by Mark Bowden. […]

Shipping Out and Shaping Up

May 1, 2012

In many American homes in the early 20th century hung a framed poem by Rudyard Kipling, If, which begins with “If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you. If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you…” and ends with “You’ll be a Man, my son.” […]

When Film Followed Television’s Lead

March 1, 2012

Because the shortsighted Hollywood film industry did not want anything to do with the new invention called television in the mid-1940s, the radio industry took over the burgeoning medium. New York became the dominant center for the first decade of TV, as the radio studios were located in Manhattan. […]

The Original Road

November 1, 2011

Forty years ago, Steven Spielberg transformed television narrative with his made-for-TV movie Duel, which aired on ABC in November 1971. […]

Brother, Can You Spare a Job?

September 1, 2011

F Scott Fitzgerald once wrote that there are no second acts to American lives––an odd statement because Americans have always sought new challenges and adventures. During the Depression, people lost their careers, their savings and their homes, and families were forced to discover new ways to survive. Three-quarters of a century later, the current generation is experiencing similar joblessness, foreclosures and bankruptcies, which have caused national anxiety. […]

Blue Grit

January 1, 2011

During the transition week between the Jimmy Carter and the Ronald Reagan presidencies 30 years ago this January, Hill Street Blues premiered on the NBC net- work. […]

Hitchcock Railway

January 1, 2011

The signature Alfred Hitchcock thriller frequently involves an innocent person accused of a politically motivated murder committed by twisted villains who are terrorists, Nazis, fascists or Communists. […]

Eisenstein on the Breach

November 1, 2010

The Battleship Potemkin, or Potemkin as it is generally known, galvanized filmmakers around the world because of the audacity of its film editing––especially in the iconic Odessa Steps massacre. Its impact on editors and directors since its premiere in Moscow on Christmas Eve, 1925 is immeasurable. […]

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