Bethlehem Press

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Movie Review: Lost in space: the 'Gravity' of it all

Wednesday, October 16, 2013 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

"Gravity" is a masterful achievement in cinema. It will be regarded as a classic and a landmark film.

Look for Oscar nominations in the double digits, including actress: Sandra Bullock; supporting actor: George Clooney; director: Afonso Cuaron; original screenplay: Cuaron and his son, Jonas; cinematography, and numerous technical categories.

SALISBURY TOWNSHIP: St. Luke's Riverside Drive Project at dead-end

Thursday, October 17, 2013 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Local News

The proposed relocation of Riverside Drive in eastern Salisbury Township, Fountain Hill and Bethlehem has apparently become the road to nowhere.

Relocation of the road, which roughly parallels the Norfolk Southern Railway railroad track on the south side of the Lehigh River and north of Lehigh Mountain, was proposed by St. Luke's University Hospital to provide an alternative access to the hospital.

Brighton Street was to be extended north to Riverside Drive to provide access to the St. Luke's Fountain Hill campus.

Theater Review: Crowded Kitchen Players' whirlwind of mirth

Wednesday, October 9, 2013 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

The Crowded Kitchen Players (CKP) perform a neat trick in its production of "A Flea in Her Ear," through Oct, 12, McCoole's Arts & Events Place, Quakertown.

CKP co-founder and "Flea" director Ara Barlieb turns inside out the stereotypes exploited by the French farce written by George Feydeau in the version by David Ives by casting against stereotype.

The results are a whirlwind of mirth.

THEATER REVIEW

Wednesday, October 2, 2013 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

Pennsylvania Playhouse 'Spelling Bee' letter-perfect

The Pennsylvania Playhouse (TPP) production of "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee" creates a conundrum: Is it this community theater or regional theater?

Yes, TPP's "Spelling Bee" is that good. You might say it's letter-perfect. Wordsmiths should not miss "Bee," which spells out many unusual words (syzygy, cenacle, elanguescence), has a plethora of puns and a dollop of double-entendres.

Movie Review: 'Prisoners' takes no prisoners

Wednesday, October 2, 2013 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

When it comes to psychological thrillers, "Prisoners" takes no prisoners.

"Prisoners," paced by an intense, carefully-crafted and completely believable performance by Hugh Jackman, is a tension-filled nail-biter with a plot twist that you probably won't see.

Keller Dover (Jackman) is a middle-class father living in western Pennsylvania who owns his owns remodeling business. He and his wife, Grace (Maria Bello), have a teen son, Ralph (Dylan Minnette), and young daughter Anna (Erin Gerasimovich).

De Niro, Pfeiffer all in 'Family'

Wednesday, September 25, 2013 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

"The Family" is a generically-titled film that is anything but generic.

The mob comedy-drama stars the iconic Robert De Niro, in one of his best roles in years, and the magnificent Michelle Pfeiffer, also in one of her best performances.

"The Family" is smart entertainment on the order of "Goodfellas" (1990). In fact, there's a nod in the storyline to "Goodfellas," directed by Martin Scorsese, who produced "The Family."

There's also a sense of "Married to the Mob" (1988) "Analyze This" (1999), and "Meet the Fockers" (2004).

Call it "Meet the Mobsters."

Lake Bell in 'World' of her own

Wednesday, September 18, 2013 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

"In A World ... "

You may have heard that phrase, intoned by Don LaFontaine at the beginning of movie previews, or trailers, as they are known.

LaFontaine, who died in 2008, was dubbed "the voice of God" for his recordings of more than 5,000 film trailers, and thousands of television commercials, network promotions and video game trailers.

LaFontaine parodied his own career in TV commercials for Geico Insurance and the "Mega Millions" lottery game.

'The World's End' does not suffice

Wednesday, September 11, 2013 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

"It's the end of the world as we know it," to quote the 1987 R.E.M. rock song, and I was feeling fine until near the end of the movie "The World's End."

Then, as in so many movies nowadays, it seems all apocalypse breaks lose, and "World's End" ends in fire.

"Ice would suffice," to quote the 1920 Robert Frost "Fire and Ice" poem.

Instead, director Edgar Wright ("Shaun of the Dead," 2004; "Hot Fuzz," 2007; "Scott Pilgrim vs. the World," 2010), loses his cool.

Oscar may like Blanchett in Allen film

Wednesday, September 4, 2013 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

"Blue Jasmine" is the 49th film directed and 71st film written by Woody Allen, including some shorts, in the 47 years since his first movie in 1966. He's already filming his next movie, an untitled feature scheduled for release in 2014.

Allen, noted for his hilarious social satires, has also made dramas, often including funny moments. "Blue Jasmine" is one such film.