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The November Man

In this excitingly nasty but ultimately confused action picture, Pierce Brosnan plays a retired government hitman drawn out of retirement to untangle a global political…

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Ballad of Narayama

"The Ballad of Narayama" is a Japanese film of great beauty and elegant artifice, telling a story of startling cruelty. What a space it opens…

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Monsieur Hire

Patrice Leconte's "Monsieur Hire" is a tragedy about loneliness and erotomania, told about two solitary people who have nothing else in common. It involves a…

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Interview with Ralph Bakshi

Animated cartoons have traditionally been places of slap­stick and wonderment and only the occasional wicked step­mother. But not in the world of Ralph Bakshi: His first feature, “Fritz The Cat”, was an X-rated excursion into the urban underworld, and in “Heavy Traffic”, “Coonskin” and “Hey, Good Lookin’”, he examined gamblers, pimps, street gangs, dope pushers and 1950s juvenile delinquents.

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Liv Ullmann, Face to Face

It is a sunny day in Stockholm, two years ago in May. Ingmar Bergman is in residence at Film House, shooting “Face to Face.” Silence reigns, as it always does when Bergman works: “No other director in the world has such quiet sets,” Liv Ullmann writes in her notebook. She sits in her tiny dressing room, wearing an old white muslin shirt and a full cotton skirt. Her feet are tucked beneath her.

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Play Scoobie-Doobie-Doo for Me

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BIG SUR, CA -- The Dirty Harry style, Clint Eastwood was explaining, is simplicity itself: "You start with this ultimate fantasy character, this guy who's always fighting the establishment, who isn't interested in the intricacies of society, who tells his boss to go to hell. You equip him with a .44 magnum, pointing out that it's the most powerful handgun in the world. You make him a cop and send him out into the streets. And you whittle down his dialog." Eastwood, as unlike this description as possible, was sipping herb tea on a veranda overlooking the Pacific. The dry December sunlight spilled down and the hills of Big Sur rose behind him, and his dialog wasn't whittled down at all. Among other things, Eastwood talks a lot more than the characters he plays, perhaps because he has more to say.

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Hanging out with Wilder and Pryor

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"What happened was, I was reading about Buster Keaton," Gene Wilder said. "About how he did all his own stunts. Like the time he had to stand in exactly the right place for the two-ton building to fall on him and he was right where the window was. So then we were making 'Silver Streak' and there we were doing our own stunts."

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Playing Freud is Elementary to Alan Arkin

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. - Breakfast at the Beverly Wiltshire. The waitresses in their frills and bodices like Swiss maids. Waiting to talk with Alan Arkin, I drink coffee and read the Los Angeles Times. Convicted killer Gary Gilmore has broken his 21-day hunger strike and eats his first meal, a cheese and bologna sandwich. David Susskind walks into the breakfast room. Orders breakfast. What's he having? Scrambled eggs, toast, orange juice? Susskind is negotiating for the Gary Gilmore story. Everybody's gotta eat. Wonder if Susskind knows that Gilmore....

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Stallone: Now He's a New, Dynamic Star

Sylvester Stallone sits on a hotel sofa with his feet up on the coffee table. He wears expensive blue jeans, the kind you buy in Beverly Hills. His muscles bulge beneath a T-shirt that says, simply and inexplicably, "Valentine." He has a tough, sensual face, a mane of black hair and the best hooded eyes since Robert Mitchum. Two years ago, he observes, his acting career was "intellectually, emotionally and financially defunct." Now he talks about how it's going to feel to be a star.

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Jessica Lange: Woman Behind the Ape

"It was just a year ago at this time," Jessica Lange remembered. "The screen tests were on Dec. 17 and 19, and then I went home for Christmas. And I said to my folks, I've got some news for you that you're not going to believe. I'm, ah, I'm going to star in 'King Kong'..."

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Richard Brooks: Looking for Mr. Goodscene

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Richard Brooks hunched his shoulders against a cold State Street wind and peered past the Christmas windows at Marshall Field's."Willya look at that," he said, wonderingly. "Howya gonna tell 'em?"There was a Salvation Army bucket in the middle of the sidewalk, and shoppers were automatically reaching into their pockets for dimes and quarters as they walked past. Trouble was, both the bucket and the window displays were props 'for Brooks' new movie, "Looking for Mr. Goodbar." They weren't actually due on State Street for another week.

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