Showing posts with label Jack Nicholson. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Jack Nicholson. Show all posts

Thursday, July 20, 2023

Remembering #Kobe Bryant: Basketball Legend, Father - Update #114

by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"


From Insider:  Three years after he died, NBA legend and champion and Olympic gold medalist, the late Kobe Bryant, seems to be making more money than ever.

From NBCNews:   In an unanimous verdict, a federal jury awarded the widow of NBA superstar Kobe Bryant $16 million in damages over leaked photographs of the site of the helicopter crash that killed her husband and one of their daughters, Gianna, in 2020.  First responders snapped of bodies at the crash and shared them with members of the public and the jury agreed with Vanessa Bryant that this invaded her privacy and caused her emotional distress.  The jury also awarded co-plaintiff Chris Chester, whose wife Sarah and 13-year-old daughter Payton also died in the crash, $15 million in damages.

From DeadlineVanessa Bryant plans to donate her proceeds from the judgment she won against L.A. County (16 million) to the nonprofit Mamba and Mambacita Sports foundation, which she founded to give sports education to underserved athletes.

From CBSNewsDeputy Doug Johnson, the Los Angeles County sheriff's deputy who was among the first to arrive at the scene of the 2020 helicopter crash that killed Lakers star Kobe Bryant, his teen daughter and seven others, testified Friday, Aug. 12th that he "didn't do anything wrong" when he snapped 25 pictures at the site, some of which contained close-up images of body parts, and sent the pictures to others.

From YahooSportsVanessa Bryant, Kobe Bryant's widow, announced on Thursday, March 24th that the Bryant family's partnership with Nike has been renewed, with an agreement to donate "net proceeds" from Kobe's shoes to the Mamba and Mambacita Sports Foundation and establish a youth basketball center in Southern California.

From NBA:   To celebrate "Kobe Day," here is the "Ultimate Career Mixtape: Kobe Bryant."

6/22/2021 - From Deadline:  Vanessa Bryant has settled the wrongful death lawsuit she launched last year over the helicopter crash that killed her NBA legend husband, Kobe Bryant, and eldest daughter, Gianna, along with seven others in January 2020.

6/7/2021 - From BET:   Natalia Bryant paid tribute to her late father, basketball great Kobe Bryant, during her high school graduation on Friday, June 4th.  Natalia is expected to attend USC beginning in the fall.

 2/15/2021 - From YouTube:  See Vanessa Bryant's "Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame" Class of 2021 Enshrinement speech for her late husband, Kobe Bryant.

5/14/2021 - From YahooSports:  Vanessa Bryant shows off portion of Kobe Bryant Hall of Fame exhibit she helped design

5/13/21 - From YahooSports:  New and more shocking information has come out of Vanessa Bryant's lawsuit against L.A. County.  Initially, it was believed that four deputies took and shared anywhere form 25 to 100 grisly photos at the helicopter crash site where Bryant's husband, Kobe, and daughter, Gianna, and six others, including two other children, were killed.  Now, it is believed that at least 18 fire and police department employees took photos of the crash site and that another 66 people may have "relevant" knowledge of the conduct.

4/19/21 - From BET:   Vanessa Bryant shares intimate wedding photos to mark the 20th anniversary (April 18th) of her marriage to the late Kobe Bryant.

3/17/2021 - From YahooSports:   In an Instagram post Wednesday, Vanessa Bryant named four Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies who allegedly took and shared unauthorized graphic photos of the helicopter crash that killed her husband Kobe, daughter Gianna and seven others.  In a lawsuit, they are named as Joey Cruz, Rafael Mejia, Michael Russell, and Raul Versales.

2/27/2021 - From YahooSports:  Kobe Bryant's widow, Vanessa Bryant, wants to publicly release the names of the Los Angeles County deputies who were accused of sharing photos of the crash site where her husband and daughter, Gianna ("Gigi"), and seven other poor souls, including two other minor children.

From NBA:  15 years ago, January 22, 2006, Kobe scored 81 points against the Toronto Raptors, the second highest point total by a player in an NBA game (after Wilt Chamberlain's 100 points).

From ClutchPoints:  Shareef O'Neal, son of NBA legend and champion, Shaquille O'Neal, will wear the number 32 when he plays for his father's alma mater, Louisiana State University (LSU).  That number combines the two jersey numbers worn by his mentor, the late Kobe Bryant, 8 and 24.  Shaquille also wore the number 32 when he played for the Orlando Magi.

From BET: Vanessa Bryant is celebrating the Los Angeles Lakers following their victorious finals win snagging the NBA Championship over the Miami Heat on Sunday, Oct. 11th. Paying tribute to her late husband, Kobe Bryant and daughter, Gianna, Vanessa wishes that the father-daughter duo “were here to see this.”

From BET:   A new law has been signed to respect victims of crime scenes and other tragic accidents after photos of the helicopter crash which killed Kobe Bryant, Gianna Bryant and seven others leaked online.

From YahooSports:   LeBron James, currently of the Los Angeles Lakers, expresses his one regret about Kobe Bryant.

From TMZ:  Vanessa Bryant is suing the L.A. County Sheriff and his department, claiming they caused her severe emotional distress ... when deputies allegedly took personal cellphone photos of the bodies of her late husband, NBA legend and champion, Kobe Bryant, and their daughter, Gigi Bryant, at the scene of the helicopter crash that took their lives.  At least eight deputies took photos of bodies at the crash site, and one tried to use it to pick up a woman at a bar.

From YahooSports:  Kobe's widow, Venessa Bryant, criticizes L.A. County Sheriff Alex Villanueva for demanding reward money from LeBron James and for covering up that his deputies were passing around photos from the helicopter crash scene that killed her husband and daughter, Gianna.

From YahooSports:  Kobe's former teammate, Pau Gasol, and his wife, Catherine McDonell, welcomed a baby girl.  Her middle name is in honor of Kobe's daughter, Gianna.  The baby's name is "Elisabet Gianna Gasol."

From HuffPost:  On what would have been the late Kobe Bryant's 42nd birthday, we get "Thoughtful Quotes About Parenthood From Kobe Bryant."

From BET:  Kobe Bryant's widow, Vanessa, shares photos of her daughters hanging out with Kobe's former teammate, NBA champion and Olympic medalist, Pau Gasol.

From YahooEntertainment:  Grammy-winning recording artist, Taylor Swift, gifts Kobe Bryant's daughter, Natalia, a cardigan for her new album, "Folklore."

From IGN:  Both the current generation and next-generation versions of the upcoming video game, "NBA 2K21," will have cover art honoring the late professional basketball legend and NBA champion, Kobe Bryant.

From Deadline:   The Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner on Friday released its examination reports (autopsy reports) for the nine victims of the January helicopter crash that killed Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna.

From NBA: writer Kevin Ding says that ESPN's Michael Jordan documentary, "The Last Dance," shows the how far Kobe's connection went.

From YahooSports:  On her 38th birthday, Vanessa Bryant opens a letter her husband, the late Kobe Bryant, penned in January before he died.

From BET:  Happy Birthday, Vanessa - her spectacular life in photos.

From PopCulture:  On what would have been her 14th birthday, Kobe Bryant fans around the world celebrate the life of his daughter, Gianna, who died with him.

From ESPN: (4/17) - Gianna Bryant and the two teammates who died with her: Alyssa Altobelli, and Payton Chester were named honorary selections in the 2020 WNBA draft.

From YahooSports:  Kobe Bryant has officially been elected to Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame, Class of 2020.

From BET:  Kobe Bryant's widow Vanessa Bryant posts a picture of herself with two of her daughters and Kobe Bryant's sisters.

From BET:  Vanessa Bryant shares video from Kobe and Wesley King's new book, "The Wizenard Series: Season One."


From YahooSports:  In the ongoing scandal of L.A. County deputies sharing graphic photos of the Kobe Bryant helicopter crash site, Sheriff Alex Villanueva says that he ordered eight deputies to delete photos of the crash that they had in their possession. Apparently, this was done last week to keep the matter quiet.

From NBA:  Laughter and tears flow at the memorial for Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna.

From YahooSports:  Los Angeles County deputies allegedly leaked graphic photographic images from the Kobe Bryant crash site.

From YahooSports:  Tom Brady tweets emotional statement about Kobe Bryant: "He was the real life superhero our world needs."

From YahooSports:  Major League Baseball super agent, Scott Boras, will grant one of Kobe's final wishes.

From YahooSports:  Hours after eulogizing Gigi and Kobe Bryant, Oregon's Sabrina Ionescu makes NCAA history.

From Deadline:  Kobe Bryant Memorial: BeyoncĂ©, Jimmy Kimmel, Alicia Keys, Christina Aguilera, NBA Legends & Vanessa Bryant Lead Celebration Of Life

From Variety:  Michael Jordan delivers a moving, tearful memorial to his friend, Kobe.

From YahooSports:  Kobe Bryant's friend, former agent, and current Los Angeles Lakers general manager, Rob Pelinka, talks about the final text he received from Bryant.

From ESPN:  From the Staples Center the "Celebration of Life for Kobe and Gianna Bryant" in a live-stream.

From BET:  The cable network will air the memorial service (#ForKobeAndGigi) live; check your local cable television listings.  The cable net is also live streaming the event, with coverage hosted by Marc Lamont Hill and Jemele Hill.  The link at the beginning of this post will take you to BET's YouTube page.

From THR:  The memorial for Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, (Monday afternoon, Feb. 24th), will feature 35,000 roses and number of performances.

From YahooSports:  The life of Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant told through his most iconic images

From NBA:  Boston Celtics legend, Bill Russell, wore a No 24 Kobe Lakers jersey to the the Celtics vs. Lakers game on Sunday afternoon, Feb. 23rd.

From THR:  The 2020 NAACP Image Awards ceremony this past Saturday night (Feb. 22nd) featured a tribute to Kobe and Gianna.

From YahooSports:  NBA legend, Kobe Bryant (1978-2020), one of the greatest modern professional basketball players, died Sunday morning, January 26, 2020 in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California, Yahoo Sports confirmed.  Kobe's daughter, Gianna, was also on board as was another player and parent en route to a travel basketball game, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported.

From BET:  Kobe Bryant's widow, Vanessa Bryant, has announced that she will change the name of Kobe's "The Mamba Sports Foundation" to "The Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation" to honor both Kobe and their later daughter, Gianna.

From YahooSports:  The Los Angeles Lakers have revealed details about the Feb. 24th memorial service celebrating Kobe and Gianna.

From NBA:  Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, laid to rest in a cemetery near their home.

From YahooSports:  The investigation of the helicopter crash that killed Kobe Bryant, his daughter, Gianna, and seven other people, has found no signs that the helicopter suffered engine failure.

From YahooSports:  Friday night (Jan. 31st), the Los Angeles Lakers revealed a new Kobe Bryant "KB" logo for the floor of the Staples Center where they play and for their uniforms.

From YahooSports:  Kobe Bryant's wife, Vanessa Bryant, makes her first public statement since the Kobe and their daughter, Gianna, were killed in a helicopter crash, Sun., Jan. 26th.

From YahooSports:  Los Angeles County officials said the Sunday morning helicopter crash that killed NBA legend Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, also claimed the lives of seven other victims - nine victims in total.

From YahooSports:  L.A. County officials makes it "official" that nine people died in the helicopter crash that claimed the life of Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna. The article also names some of the other victims.

From HuffPostAll nine victims have been identified in the Jan. 26, 2020 helicopter crash that killed Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna.

From YahooSports:   The Los Angeles County Coroner's office has informed news outlets that all nine bodies have been recovered from the helicopter crash site where Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, and seven other people were killed.

From YahooNews:  Kobe Bryant's wife and Gianna's mother, Vanessa Bryant, with touching Instagram profile photo.

From YahooNews:   Experts now wonder why helicopter pilot in Kobe Bryant crash flew in fog.

From YahooSports:  Helicopter in Kobe Bryant crash lacked key safety feature, a "terrain awareness system."

From People:  Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, attended Catholic mass at Cathedral of Our Lady Queen of the Angels in Newport Beach and received communion before the taking the helicopter flight in which they would lose their lives.

From YahooLifestyle:  Kobe Bryant's surviving daughters must now grieve a sister: Why sibling loss gets "minimized."

From YahooSports:  Harbor Day School in Corona Del Mar, CA has retired the No. 2 jersey of Kobe Bryant's daughter, Gianna "Gigi" Bryant, who died with him in a helicopter crash.

From BET:  Vanessa Bryant leaves heart-breaking tribute to her daughter, Gianna Bryant.


From LATimes:  This link leads to a live sports blog with updates and new articles on the ongoing story of the death of Kobe Bryant.

From Deadline: The site has a dedicate Kobe Bryant page with links to their news and tributes articles.

From BET:  Kobe Bryant Helicopter Crash: Here’s What We Know


From YahooFinance:  WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert said that Kobe is the only current or former NBA player to visit her in the seven months she has been commissioner.

From NBA:  An video of highlights from Kobe Bryant's years a star high school basketball player.

From Variety:  At a 2020 NBA All-Star Game brunch President Barack Obama speaks about the loss of Kobe and Gianna Bryant and the seven other victims of the helicopter crash.

From SI:  Dr. Dre's 2020 NBA All-Star Game video tribute to Kobe Bryant is... something else...

From ESPN:  Kawhi Leonard wins the first "Kobe Bryant MVP Award" an the 2020 NBA All-Star Game, Sun., Feb. 16th, 2020.

From NBA:  On Sat., Feb. 15th, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver announced that the MVP Award for the NBA All-Star Game has been permanently named for Kobe Bryant.

From YahooSports:  Tonight's 2020 NBA All-Star Game featured tributes to Kobe Bryant.

From NBA:  This is's Kobe Bryant tribute page.

From BostonGlobe:  Boston Celtic Gordon Hayward talks about his secret workouts with Kobe.

From NBA:  The best of Kobe on the "NBA on TNT"

From NBA:  A video obituary for Kobe Bryant

From NBA:  Kobe Bryant honored throughout the league.

From NBA:  Los Angeles Clippers star, Paul George, narrates a tribute to Kobe, Gianna, and the other victims in the helicopter crash.

From NBA:  Three-time NBA champion Stephen Curry on Kobe's passing.

From NBA:  Inside "Mamba Forever," the emotional tribute essay from Howard Beck of "Bleacher Report."

From ESPN:  The NBA has postponed the Tues., Jan. 28th between the Los Angeles Clippers and the Los Angeles Lakers, in response to the death of Laker legend, Kobe Bryant.

From NBA:  NBA commissioner Adam Silver's statement on passing of Kobe Bryant

From NBA:  This link goes to a page of video highlights from Kobe's NBA career and also includes and also a photo essay by NBA/Lakers photographer, Andrew Bernstein, on his favorite Kobe photos.

From NBA:   NBA players, coaches, legends and other personalities on Bryant's passing.


From PopCulture:  A young great white shark has been named for Kobe Bryant.

From BET:  A father reveals how Kobe Bryant made his son's dream come through Make-a-Wish Iowa.  The boy, who eventually died of cancer at 13, was buried in the the jersey Kobe game him.

From PopCulture:  "The Big Bang Theory" actress Kaley Cuoco says the death of Kobe Bryant left her feeling "gutted."

From BET:  Jay-Z reveals one of the last things Kobe told him.

From YahooEntertainment:  An oral history of Kobe and Glen Keane's Oscar-winning animated short, "Dear Basketball."

From Deadline:  Author Paulo Coelho, who had been working on a children's book with Kobe Bryant, wants to delete the unfinished draft and discontinue work on the book.

From YahooSports:  NBA superstar LeBron James reveals his new ""Mamba 4 Life" tatoo honoring former Laker Kobe Bryant.

From YahooSports:  NBA superstar LeBron James, of the Los Angeles Lakers, was surprised at the joy Kobe Bryant found in his family life in his post-NBA career.

From Variety:  At a Super Bowl Week concert in Miami, recent Grammy winner Lizzo is joined on stage by actor-singer Harry Styles and also offers a tribute to Kobe, Gianna and the other victims of the helicopter crash that killed them Sun., Jan. 26th.

From YahooSports:  Shaquille O'Neal, Kobe's one-time teammate, will donate the proceeds from his big Super Bowl LIV party to the families of the nine victims in the crash that killed Kobe.

From THR:  Talk show hosts Jimmy Kimmel and Jimmy Fallon tear-up on the first episodes of their respective shows since the death of Kobe Bryant, his daughter, Gianna, and seven other people.

From YahooSports:  "Mamba Mentality," Kobe Bryant's motto, looms over Super Bowl week.

From THR:  Renowned animation filmmaker and legendary Disney animator, Glen Keane, shared an Oscar win with Kobe Bryant for the animated short film, "Dear Kobe."  In a column for "The Hollywood Reporter," he writes about his first meeting with Bryant.

From YahooSports:  Allen Iverson, one ne of Kobe Bryant's greatest rivals, speaks about being "devastated and heartbroken" over his death and offers a story.

From YahooSports:  Los Angeles united in grief for the loss of its adopted son, Kobe Bryant.

From YahooEntertainment:  In a rare interview, Los Angeles Lakers super-fan, Jack Nicholson, releases a statement about Kobe Bryant.

From BET:  Remembering Kobe Bryant's relationship with his daughter, Gianna, who also died in the helicopter crash that killed her father.

From BET:  Shareef O'Neal, the son of NBA legend Shaquille O'Neal, shares a message that Kobe sent to him the morning Kobe died.

From MarketWatch:  This viral video shows how Kobe Bryant mirrored his idol, NBA legend, Michael Jordan.

From YahooSports:  Pro golfing legend, Tiger Woods, speaks on the passing of his friend, Kobe Bryant.

From YahooSports:  Upon hearing of Kobe Bryant's death, NBA star, Kyrie Irving, reportedly left Madison Square Garden before his team, the Brooklyn Nets, took on the New York Knicks.  Irving and Bryant were close, and Irving saw Bryant as a mentor.

From YahooSports:  President Trump and former President Obama take to Twitter after the shocking news of the death of Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna and seven others in a helicopter crash.

From YahooEntertainment:  The 2020 Grammy Awards are being held at Staples Center tonight (Sun., Jan. 26th).  The NBA's Los Angeles Lakers also play there, and today, they lost one of their all-time players, Kobe Bryant.  Even with the Grammys, fans are gathering at the Staples Center to celebrate Kobe's life.

From Deadline:  Fellow Los Angeles Lakers legends:  Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson, Shaquille O'Neal offer tributes and condolences to their fallen Laker, Kobe Bryant.

From ESPN - In Europe, Kobe Bryant remembered for his "Italian qualities."

From IMDb:  The site remembers Kobe Bryant in a gallery of 58 photos.


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Sunday, April 30, 2023

Negromancer News Bits and Bites from April 23rd to 30th, 2023 - Update #20

by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

You can support Leroy via Paypal or on Patreon:


CELEBRITY - From THR:  Actor Michael J. Fox, 61, tells Jane Pauley of "CBS Sunday Morning" that his battle with Parkinson's disease gets tougher every day. Fox says, "I'm not going to be 80."

STRIKE - From Deadline:  The site explains the WGA strike: the issues, the stakes, movies and TV shows affected, and how long it might last.

MOVIES - From Variety:  Director David Borenstein talks about his new documentary film, ""Can't Feel Nothing," which explores the connections between Internet use and emotional disorders.

TELEVISION - From TheNewYorker:  "Why are TV writers so miserable?" by Michael Schulman.

SPORTS/CELEBRITY - From Deadline:  Hollywood icon and Oscar-winning actor, Jack Nicholson, attended his first Los Angeles Lakers game since October 2021.  He attended Friday, April 28th's Memphis Grizzles vs. Lakers' Game 6 in this first round of the NBA playoffs.  The Lakers won the game 125-85 and won the series 4 games to 2.

CINEMACON/ANIMATION - From Deadline:  At CinemaCon 2023, Paramount Pictures announces its first "Transformers" animated film, "Transformers One." This isn't the first Transformers animated film. "The Transformers: The Movie" was released to theaters in 1986.

CELEBRITY - From THR:  This profile of 79-year-old actress Valerie Perrine, includes information on her caretaker and on an appeal for financial assistance.

CINEMACON - From BloodyDisgusting:  At CinemaCon, the audience was treated to footage of "The Exorcist: Believer," the first in a new trilogy set in the world of 1973 film, "The Exorcist."  Ellen Burstyn reprises her iconic role as "Chris MacNeil," the mother of a daughter possessed by a demon.

MOVIES - From ScreenTime:  Actress Dakota Fanning talks about reunited with Denzel Washington for the first time since 2004's "Man on Fire." The two will appear together in "The Equalizer 3."

TELEVISION - From Deadline:  The shape of things to come: Of the 13-member series-regular cast of CBS’ comedy "Bob❤️Abishola," only the two leads, Billy Gardell and Folake Olowofoyeku, will remain series regulars next season. The others can recur in as few as five episodes in Season 5.

DISNEY - From DeadlineThe Walt Disney Company has sued Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.

POLITICS/TELEVISION - From CNN:  Fox News has parted ways with its most popular host, Tucker Carlson.

From RollingStone:  Fox News executives have in their possession a dossier of alleged dirt on Tucker Carlson should he attack the network in the wake of his departure, eight sources at the network and close to it have told "Rolling Stone" magazine.

From CNN:  CNN has parted ways with its most whatever host, Don Lemon.

MOVIES - From People:  Oscar-nominated actress, Terry Moore, reflects on her relationship with ex-husband and eccentric billionaire, Howard Hughes.  Moore is one of the last living performers of the Golden Age of Hollywood, and she is still working.

BOX OFFICE - From BoxOfficePro:  The winner of the 4/21 to 4/23/2023 weekend box office is Universal Pictures/Illumination Entertainment's "The Super Mario Bros. Movie" with an estimated take of 58.2 million dollars.

MUSIC/LGBTQ+ - From Deadline:  The state of Tennessee may have a law banning drag performances, but during her concert in Knoxville, TN, Grammy-winner Lizzo invited several drag performers on stage with her to perform.

STREAMING - From Variety:  Actor Bruce Campbell has joined Peacock's upcoming "Satanic Panic" drama, "Hysteria!"


From Variety:  Politician and television personality, Jerry Springer, has died at the age of 79, Thursday, April 27, 2023.  He was the mayor of Cincinnati, Ohio for one year in the 1970s.  However, Springer is known for his long-running daytime talk show, "Jerry Spring" (1991-2018).  At the height of the show's popularity, it was a cultural touchstone, and in 1998, it was more popular "The Oprah Winfrey Show."

From Deadline:  American singer, actor, activist, and Civil Rights icon, Harry Belafonte, has died at the age of 96, Tuesday, April 26, 2023.  The child of Jamaican-born parents, Belafonte was among the most successful Caribbean-American music stars and recording artists of all time.  A three-time Grammy Award winner, he helped popularize Calypso music with international audiences.  As an actor, he was one of the first Black leading men in Hollywood and starred in such films as "Carmen Jones" (1954), "Island in the Sun" (1957), and "Buck and the Preacher" (1972), to name a few. Belafonte also won an Emmy Award, a Tony Award, and the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

From Deadline:  "Harry Belafonte: A Career in Photos."

Monday, July 18, 2022

Comics Review: "ELVIRA in Horrorland Volume 1 #2" Visits Kubrick's Overlook Hotel


STORY: David Avallone
ART: Silvia Califano
COLORS: Walter Pereya
LETTERS: Taylor Esposito
EDITOR: Joseph Rybandt
COVER: Dave Acosta and Jason Moore
VARIANT COVER ARTISTS: Dave Acosta and Jason Moore; John Royle; Silvia Califano; photo cover
32pp, Color, $3.99 U.S. (June 2022)

Rated Teen+

Chapter Two: “She's a Kubrick... House”

In 1981, actress and model Cassandra Peterson created the “horror hostess character,” known as “Elvira.”  Elvira gradually grew in popularity and eventually became a brand name.  As Elvira, Peterson endorsed many products and became a pitch-woman, appearing in numerous television commercials throughout the 1980s.

Elvira also appeared in comic books, beginning in 1986 with the short-lived series from DC Comics, Elvira's House of Mystery.  In 2018, Elvira returned to comic books via Dynamite Entertainment.  Elvira's latest comic book series is Elvira in Horrorland Volume 1.  The series is written by David Avallone; drawn by Silvia Califano; colored by Walter Pereyra; and lettered by Taylor Esposito.  The series finds Elvira trapped in the Multiverse of Movies (a bunch of “pocket dimensions” created by the existence of movies) with only the illusive “Remote Control of Federico Fellini” capable of returning her home.

Elvira in Horrorland Volume 1 #2 (“She's a Kubrick... House”) opens in the aftermath of Elvira's (mis)adventures at “Bloch's Motel” and its crazy proprietor and his mother.  Now, it's on to “The Overcooked Hotel” and its temporary manager, Nick Torrents.  Elvira's journey is about to get quite a shining, and she still has to find that remote.

THE LOWDOWN:  Since July 2021, Dynamite Entertainment's marketing department has been providing me with PDF review copies of some of their titles.  One of them is Elvira in Horrorland Volume 1 #2, one of many Dynamite/David Avallone Elvira comic books that I have read and enjoyed.

This second issue is a spoof of director Stanley Kubrick's 1980 film, The Shining.  Writer David Avallone has quite a bit of fun with Kubrick much discussed film.  In fact, this may be the most fun Avallone has had with a revered director since he held Guillermo del Toro's head under water in Elvira: The Shape of Elvira.  In “She's a Kubrick... House,” Avallone finds endless delight in Kubrick's masterpiece, which I consider one of the darkest films I have ever seen.  But Avallone mines so much humor out of this movie that he has the momentum to potentially turn this issue into a graphic novel.

I think artist Silvia Califano is perfect as Avallone's collaborator here.  Califano's turns Avallone's script and comedy into comic book gold.  I've previously compared Califano art for Elvira in Horrorland to the 1980s work of Howard Chaykin.  Now, I'm approaching the point of bringing up the name of the humor comics maestro, Wallace Wood.

Once again I … redrum, redrum … recommend Elvira in Horrorland, dear readers.  My God!  It's full of humor, indeed.

I READS YOU RECOMMENDS:  Fans of Elvira and of David Avallone's Elvira comic books will want to read Elvira in Horrorland Volume 1.

[This comic book includes “Dynamite Dispatch” June 2022, which features an interview with writer Christopher Priest.]


Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

The text is copyright © 2022 Leroy Douresseaux. All Rights Reserved. Contact this blog or site for reprint and syndication rights and fees.


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Saturday, August 23, 2014

Negromancer News Bits and Bites for the Week of August 17th to August 23rd, 2014 - Update #20


From TheVerge:  Marvel's movie business is crushing DC's

From TheWrap:  MPAA earns ire of "R" rating for gay drama, Love is Strange.

From HuffingtonPostHugh Jackman can deadlift 400lbs.

From ScreenrantJennifer Lawrence reportedly in talks to appear in Quentin Tarantino's next film, "The Hateful Eight."

From YahooHealth"Fat" Daphne controversy in Scooby-Doo! Frankencreepy.

From TVLineShad Moss, also known as the rapper, Bow Wow, is a cast member of the "CSI" spin-off, "CSI: Cyber," as a baby-faced hacker.

From IMDbBlog:  FX renews "The Strain" for a second 13-episode season.  The current season gets better with each episode.

From BuzzFlash:  Emmy winner Harry Shearer impersonates Richard Nixon preparing to resign.

From HelloJack Nicholson and his lookalike son, Ray.

From HuffingtonPostNeil Patrick Harris, who is gay, talks about having sex women.

From Variety:  The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (estimated box office take of $28.4 million) win the August 15-17, 2014 weekend box office.  This is the film's second consecutive win, having finished at #1 when it debuted during the August 8-10, 2014 weekend.  Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy finished at #2 ($24.7 million) for a second straight week, after finishing at #1 during its debut weekend.  The Expendables 3, this weekend's big debut movie, is considered a flop after ending up in third place with an estimated box office tally of $16.2 million.

From Variety:   You may have heard that a "DVD-quality" copy of The Expendables 3 ended up on the Internet a few weeks ago.  Did that affect the film's puny box office during its debut weekend?  Variety discusses that.  Here is an interesting tidbit:

However, some research suggests that piracy can take a big chunk out of ticket sales. A 2011 study by Carnegie Mellon University researchers found that when a film is pirated prior to release, it loses nearly 20 percent of its potential revenue.

That study can be found here.


From YahooScreen:  More Episode VII rumors (video)

COMICS BOOKS - Movies and Comics:

From WeGotThisCovered:  8 comic book movies that actually feel like comic books.

From YahooScreen:  Seven actors who almost played Batman

From CinemaBlend:  Director Marc Webb confirms three planned members of "The Sinister Six," the Spider-Man spinoff movie.  They seem to be "The Gentleman," "Mysterio," and "Kraven the Hunter." [I'll pretend to be interested.  Well, maybe I'm a little interested.]

From ScreenRant:  Actor Brian Patrick Wade of MTV's "Teen Wolf" well play the villain, Absorbing Man, on the upcoming season of "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D."

From YahooMovies:  From the set of "Batman Vs. Superman," the mysterious green legs of Scott McNairy.

From YahooFinance:  Another article about Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson appearing in a DC Comics superhero movie - maybe playing hero Shazam and anti-hero Black Adam

From ScreenRant:  Marvel is listening to fan requests about movie... or maybe not

From CBB and Nexopia:  Zak Edwards is brilliant on the piece about diversity in American comic book publishing from the major companies.


From TheWrapDon Pardo, the announcer for "Saturday Night Live," reportedly died yesterday (Tuesday, August 19, 2014) at the age of 96.  Pardo was also the on-duty booth announcer for WNBC-TV on the day (November 22, 1963) that President John F. Kennedy was assassinated; thus, Pardo was the first to announce the shooting to NBC viewers.


From VOX:  The geniuses behind your favorite pop songs

From YahooFinance:  How Kobe Bryant started the current weight loss trend among NBA players like LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, and Dwayne Wade, to name a few.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Review: 1989 "Batman" Movie Wanders Without a Plot

TRASH IN MY EYE No. 124 (of 2005) by Leroy Douresseaux

Batman (1989)
Running time: 126 minutes (2 hours, 6 minutes)
MPAA – PG-13
DIRECTOR: Tim Burton
WRITERS: Sam Hamm and Warren Skaaren, from a story by Hamm (based upon BATMAN characters created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger)
PRODUCERS: Jon Peters and Peter Guber
EDITOR: Ray Lovejoy
COMPOSER: Danny Elfman
Academy Award winner


Starring: Jack Nicholson, Michael Keaton, Kim Basinger, Robert Wuhl, Pat Hingle, Billy Dee Williams, Michael Gough, Jack Palance, Jerry Hall, Tracey Walter, Lee Wallace, and William Hootkins

The subject of this movie review is Batman, the 1989 superhero movie directed by Tim Burton. It was the first film in the initial Batman film series, which ended with 1997’s Batman and Robin, before being rebooted with Batman Begins (2005).

Although Warner Bros. had a “Batman” movie in various stages of development for most of the 80’s, the 1989 box office smash Batman was not green lit for production until the film Beetlejuice became a hit. In 1985, Warner Bros. chose Tim Burton, the director of Beetlejuice, to helm the long planned Batman after his first theatrical feature, Pee Wee’s Big Adventure, became a box office hit. However, when Beetlejuice’s also became a hit, that success that made Warner Bros. realize that Burton was definitely a director who could make box office hits, and being that Warner was putting so much money into Batman, they needed it to be a hit. Comic book fans raised (un)holy hell over the choice of Burton to direct and Burton’ selection of Michael Keaton to play Bruce Wayne/Batman. Warner Bros. toyed with and appeased their nerdy emotions by regularly releasing Batman movie trailers and other sneak peeks of the film. The choice of Jack Nicholson to play the Joker also got people excited (and quieted angry comic book nerds), and the film went on to be a huge hit.

Gotham City has been astir with rumors of a giant bat, called The Bat, by criminals who claimed that it attacked them; indeed, the mysterious figure is said to prey upon Gotham’s criminal underworld. This figure is actually a costumed hero who calls himself Batman (Michael Keaton), and he gradually comes out of the shadows to investigate the criminal operation of Gotham’s chief criminal, Carl Grissom (Jack Palance). During a police showdown with Grissom’s thugs, Batman causes the apparent accidental death of Grissom’s chief enforcer, Jack Napier (Jack Nicholson). Napier, however, is not dead; nearly-drowned in strange chemicals and scarred by a bullet, he emerges from the shadows as the homicidal and clown-like, The Joker (Nicholson), and begins a murder spree against his rivals for control of the city’s criminal underworld. The Joker also initiates a crime spree on the city as Gotham prepares to celebrate its 200th birthday. Meanwhile, Batman’s secret identity, Bruce Wayne (Keaton), is trying to figure out a way to stop The Joker, while a lovely reporter, Vicky Vale (Kim Basinger), shows interest in both Wayne and Batman.

This movie is a large plot-less beast that meanders into its third act. The movie even starts off with a cacophony of countless actors mouthing awkward sounding dialogue. Keaton is unconvincing as either Bruce Wayne or Batman. Kim Basinger struggles with role made gimpy by a script that treats her like a typical action movie girl-attached-to-the-hero, one the filmmakers only grudgingly accept as necessary. Tim Burton’s signature gothic and darkly comic fantasy hardly ever shows in this film; this is mostly a Tim Burton film in name only. However, Jack Nicholson takes the script and elevates it. Except for a few hammy moments, he’s brilliant and his delivery brings his lines to snappy life.

Compared to the recent Batman Begins, Batman 1989 doesn’t hold up, but the two films are actually quite different in tone and style. This Batman is a combination of the wrong ingredients or at least incorrectly measured ingredients (from director and cast to the music and other production elements) plus a big helping of Jack Nicholson’s miraculously funny performance; both make this an average and (for reasons unknown to me) curiously entertaining film.

5 of 10

1990 Academy Awards: 1 win: “Best Art Direction-Set Decoration” (Anton Furst and Peter Young)

1990 BAFTA Awards: 6 nominations: “Best Actor in a Supporting Role” (Jack Nicholson), “Best Costume Design” (Bob Ringwood), “Best Make Up Artist” (Paul Engelen and Nick Dudman), “Best Production Design” (Anton Furst), “Best Sound” (Don Sharpe, Tony Dawe, and Bill Rowe), “Best Special Effects” (Derek Meddings and John Evans)

1990 Golden Globes, USA: 1 nomination: “Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Comedy/Musical” (Jack Nicholson)


Friday, September 9, 2011

Review: "Anger Management" Overdoes It (Happy B'day, Adam Sandler)

TRASH IN MY EYE No. 50 (of 2003) by Leroy Douresseaux

Anger Management (2003)
Running time: 106 minutes (1 hour, 46 minutes)
MPAA – PG-13 for crude sexual content and language
DIRECTOR: Peter Segal
WRITER: David Dorfman
PRODUCERS: Barry Bernardi and Jack Giarraputo
CINEMATOGRAPHER: Donald M. McAlpine (D.o.P.)
EDITOR: Jeff Gourson

COMEDY with elements of drama

Starring: Jack Nicholson, Adam Sandler, Marisa Tomei, Luis Guzman, John Turturro with Woody Harrelson, Lynne Thigpen, John C. Reilly, and Heather Graham

First of, let me say that Anger Management is extremely funny and all the characters are very well played, from the stars to the smaller roles. I’m still surprised that this movie was able to keep its hilarious energy so long. Actually, it doesn’t naturally run out of steam. All at once, the filmmakers decide to screw up the ending.

Dave Buznick (Adam Sandler) is a under appreciated, low level secretary who is wrongly sentenced to an anger management program, after a ridiculous incident on an airplane. He has the luck of one-eyed, one-legged dog, so he only gets into more trouble after he enters the program. His counselor, Dr. Buddy Rydell (Jack Nicholson), decides to move into Dave’s apartment so that he gave give his patient 24-hour intensive therapy. The problem is Rydell, in Dave’s eyes, is more crazy and angrier than he could ever be. However, he’s forced to live with Rydell’s unorthodox and bizarre behavior, causing Dave to slowly go insane, which is the very last thing he needs because another alleged outburst of extreme rage and the judge (Lynne Thigpen) would sentence Dave to a year in state prison.

Sandler and Nicholson make an excellent comedy team, and they have such amazing, yet surprising chemistry. Jack does what he does best; he’s the wicked, little devil and conniving imp at the seat of the controls – the conductor, the master manipulator, Rasputin.

Sandler tempers the sullen and explosive character traits that he gives most of his others characters to play Dave Buznick, who is a put upon guy simmering quietly beneath his clothes and ready to have one good explosion. He makes Dave very sympathetic. The audience can feel the stings of the wrongs done to Dave and can root for him to win. I know that I certainly wanted him to just really get angry and let his tormentors have it. This is an understated performance that’s just obvious enough to work. However, Sandler does experience the occasional lapse; he plays such a second banana to Nicholson’s antics that he falls into moments when he isn’t even acting. It’s like he’s just serving up volleys for Nicholson to jump on, and he’s just an emcee. Still, Sandler and Nicholson worked together like a veteran comedy team.

There’s not much to the story, and a plot is nonexistent. Really, the writing and directing only exist to serve as staging for the two main players to exercise their shtick. It’s much the same with the supporting cast, but they make the most of their onscreen time, especially Luiz Guzman and John Turturro. Sadly, Marisa Tomei is less than a cipher, and her talent is wasted; pretty much any actress of modest attractiveness could have played her part.

Now to the end – it’s mostly a New York Yankees, New York City, NYC folk heroes love fest, and it kills this movie. In fact, the resolution of the story and the ridiculous explanation for Dr. Rydell’s behavior almost kills the story and certainly retards Nicholson’s very entertaining character and performance. There are certainly several other endings that would have made perfect sense in the context of Rydell’s antics and Buznick’s predicament. Instead, the filmmakers tie everything up in a most awful and sappy finale that truly deserves to be called a “Hollywood Ending.” Worst of all is a cameo by Rudolph “Rudy” W. Giuliani, former mayor of NYC. He is someone I wish would have been in the Twin Towers the day they fell and not made it out alive.

Girl, did I say that? Anyway, Anger Management is still very funny, at least up to the end, and worth seeing.

6 of 10


Thursday, May 27, 2010

Review: Nicholson, Keaton Sparkle in Excellent "Something's Gotta Give"

TRASH IN MY EYE No. 176 (of 2003) by Leroy Douresseaux

Something’s Gotta Give (2003)
Running time: 128 minutes (2 hours, 8 minutes)
MPAA – PG-13 for sexual content, brief nudity and strong language
PRODUCERS: Bruce A. Block and Nancy Meyers (uncredited)
CINEMATOGRAPHER: Michael Ballhaus (director of photography)
EDITOR: Joe Hutshing
COMPOSER: Hans Zimmer
Academy Award nominee

COMEDY/ROMANCE with elements of drama

Starring: Jack Nicholson, Diane Keaton, Amanda Peet, Keanu Reeves, Frances McDormand, Jon Favreau, and Paul Michael Glaser

In his new film, Something’s Gotta Give, Jack Nicholson plays Harry Langer, a 63 year-old New York City music executive with a taste for younger (than 30) women. He follows his latest trophy, Marin (Amanda Peet), to her mother’s East Hampton beach house, where he meets her 50-something mother, Erica Barry (Diane Keaton), who takes an immediate disliking to him. However, Harry’s world is turned upside down when he suffers a mild heart attack. When Marin goes back to the city, she leaves Harry at the beach house in the care of her mother and his doctor, Julian (Keanu Reeves). Soon Harry and Julian are competing with each other for Erica’s affections. For Harry, it’s a new stress in his life, as he’s never dated a woman Erica’s age, and Erica hasn’t loved in the decade since her divorce. Awkwardness and hijinks ensue as Jack’s film becomes Jack and Diane’s film.

Simply put, this is a fantastic film, and I enjoyed nearly every minute in; in fact, there are very few missteps in this film. Nancy Meyers, who directed the smash hit What Women Want, has proved herself to have a deft touch with romantic comedies made for the adult sensibilities. Her script is confident and exudes the assurance of a writer who knows exactly where she’s going. You can see the ending coming, but the trip there is a hoot. When it all wraps up, SGG will still surprise you with how it closes the curtain on this very nice love story amongst the senior set.

Jack Nicholson gives yet another of his great performances as an actor. This isn’t one of those times when “Jack’s being Jack.” He really tries to bring a character to life and yet still color it with the charm of his film personality. The surprise is a surprise that she’s a surprise – Diane Keaton. When it comes down to it, this is her film, and the character and situation are very similar to Woody Allen’s Annie Hall, which earned Keaton a Best Actress Oscar. She grabs Erica by the hair and gives it her all – funny, charming, witty, self-deprecating, smart, strong, vulnerable, and human.

Amanda Peet and Frances McDormand are very funny. Peet’s character is more or less just a vehicle to get the leads together, but Ms. Peet makes herself a strong presence in every scene in which she appears. The biggest pity is that Ms. McDormand could have made this film great; not only is she a fine actress, but her character is strong enough to steal scenes no matter who else is around. Each time she’s in the film, she leaves you wanting more. As for Keanu, he is what he is – a pretty face that tries hard, but fails half the time. It’s a good thing that his part is small; there’s no way he could have kept up with Nicholson and Ms. Keaton.

Something’s Gotta Give is a fine romantic comedy filled with love, loss, confusion, passion, and redemption. It’s about the surprises life, both painful and pleasurable, that life has. It’s a fun film for people with grown up minds.

8 of 10

2004 Academy Awards: 1 nomination: “Best Actress in a Leading Role” (Diane Keaton)

2001 Golden Globes: 2 nominations: “Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy” (Diane Keaton) and “Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy” (Jack Nicholson)


Monday, February 22, 2010

Review: Oscar-Nominated "About Schmidt" a Dry Affair

TRASH IN MY EYE No. 37 (of 2006) by Leroy Douresseaux

About Schmidt (2002)
Running time: 125 minutes (2 hours, 5 minutes)
MPAA – R for some language and brief nudity
DIRECTOR: Alexander Payne
WRITERS: Jim Taylor and Alexander Payne (from the novel by Louis Begley)
PRODUCERS: Michael Besman and Harry Gittes
EDITOR: Kevin Tent
Academy Award nominee

DRAMA with elements of comedy

Starring: Jack Nicholson, Kathy Bates, Hope Davis, Dermot Mulroney, June Squibb, and Howard Hesseman

Before they won an Oscar for the meandering road film/midlife crisis tale, Sideways, the team of director/co-writer Alexander Payne and co-writer Jim Taylor fashioned the meandering road movie/geriatric life crisis, About Schmidt.

In the film, Warren R. Schmidt (Jack Nicholson) has just retired from his job as an insurance actuary. He is dealing with the fact that he thinks that his life has been a waste. Warren is also preoccupied by the things about his wife, Helen (June Squibb), that have always bothered him; in retirement, those things are really starting to work on his nerves. After Helen dies suddenly, Warren heads to Denver where his daughter, Jeannie (Hope Davis), is nearing her wedding to a waterbed salesman, Randall Hertzel (Dermot Mulroney), whom Warren doesn’t like. Warren hopes to dissuade Jeannie from marrying Randall, but Warren also has to deal with Randall’s eccentric family, including his mother, the lusty Roberta (Kathy Bates). But will this trip give meaning to Warren’s life?

In spite of its Oscar-nominated pedigree, About Schmidt is mostly an average film. Jack Nicholson gives a fine performance as Warren Schmidt, but you feel sorry for the character more than you root for him. That’s not necessarily bad, but considering that this film’s tone is more pathetic than poignant, it’s difficult to not find this entire scenario and the characters a little annoying. Kathy Bates gives a nice performance, trying to make her Roberta Hertzel more than just a one-note oddity. James Glennon’s photography certainly captures the essence of a soul adrift that is the core of the lead character.

However, no Payne/Taylor film is without its moments that help an average film be a little more interesting. The better elements in Sideways made it a good film, overcoming stretches of dryness; About Schmidt gets a bump, but not as much as Sideways. The film’s opening scene, in which Warren watches the clock tick away the last minutes of his career, is art itself, and the closing of the film brings some heart and heat to this cold and dry affair.

5 of 10

2003 Academy Awards: 2 nominations: “Best Actor in a Leading Role” (Jack Nicholson) and “Best Actress in a Supporting Role” (Kathy Bates)

2003 BAFTA Awards: 1 nomination: best actor (Nicholson)

2003 Golden Globes: 2 wins: best motion picture actor-drama (Nicholson) and best screenplay-motion picture; 3 nominations: best picture-drama, best director-motion picture, and best supporting actress-motion picture (Bates)

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Monday, February 8, 2010

Review: Best Picture "The Departed" Won Scorsese His Oscar

TRASH IN MY EYE No. 217 (of 2006) by Leroy Douresseaux

The Departed (2006)
Running time: 152 minutes (2 hours, 32 minutes)
MPAA – R for strong brutal violence, pervasive language, some strong sexual content, and drug material
DIRECTOR: Martin Scorsese
WRITER: William Monahan (based upon the film Infernal Affairs)
PRODUCERS: Brad Pitt, Brad Grey, and Graham King
EDITOR: Thelma Schoonmaker
Academy Award winner – Best Picture 2006


Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, Jack Nicholson, Mark Wahlberg, Martin Sheen, Ray Winstone, Vera Farmiga, Alec Baldwin, Anthony Anderson, James Badge Dale, David O’Hara, Mark Rolston, and Kristen Dalton

Some are speculating that Leonardo DiCaprio is director Martin Scorsese’s new Robert De Niro, as, like the young De Niro who starred in several of Scorcese’s early films, DiCaprio finds himself playing the lead in a third flick for the acclaimed director. (The others were Gangs of New York and The Aviator.) This time Scorsese and DiCaprio team up for The Departed, a remake of the 2002 Hong Kong film, Mou gaan dou (released in the U.S. as Infernal Affairs).

Whereas Infernal Affairs was set in Hong Kong, The Departed is set in South Boston where the Massachusetts State Police are waging an all-out war against the most powerful mob boss in the city, Frank Costello (Jack Nicholson). Inside the state police, the levelheaded Captain Queenan (Martin Sheen) and the hard-nosed and in-your-face Sergeant Dignam (Mark Wahlberg) operate a deep undercover program. They recruit a young rookie from a trouble background, William “Billy” Costigan, Jr. (Leonardo DiCaprio), who is from South Boston, to infiltrate Costello’s mob. When he accepts, the trio goes through a two-year process of rewriting and reestablishing Costigan’s identity.

Meanwhile, another young policeman is rising through the ranks, earning promotions rapidly. Before long, he joins the state police’s Special Investigations Unit, led by Captain Ellerby (Alec Baldwin). This small group of elite officers is also dedicated to bringing Costello down, but what they don’t know is that their “Southie” (from hoods of South Boston) new officer, Colin Sullivan (Matt Damon), is an undercover mole working for Frank Costello, and Sullivan is keeping the crime boss always ahead of the police.

The double lives consume Costigan and Sullivan, as they penetrate deeper, gathering information on plans and counter-plans of the operations they’ve both infiltrated. Dark secrets and double-crossing, however, abound, and both men learn that they aren’t the only ones with two faces. When both the gangsters and the police discover that there are rats among them, Billy and Colin each race to uncover the other man’s identity in time to save himself.

Infernal Affairs had good characters, but the film focused on plot more than it did on settings and characters. The Departed absolutely loves its characters and setting. William Monahan’s screenplay is a celebration of extreme characters full of odd and extreme behavior. Monahan uses the Boston setting to color these players, their actions, and motivations, etc. Occasionally, Scorsese and his longtime editor, Thelma Schoonmaker, get in the way of these characters because the narrative jumps from one scene to another. Even then, the camera seems restless within any given scene.

Still, nothing holds this cast back. Jack Nicholson does his best psycho in a while. Frank Costello is edgier than Nicholson’s Joker (in 1989’s Batman). Costello (based in part on notorious Boston gangster, Whitey Bulger) is over the top without seeming like a cartoon; Nicholson turns him into a scary, real monster – the incarnation of human evil. Damon’s Colin Sullivan reeks of being a wily street rat – a slick con artist who can sell a man his own car back to him. Mark Wahlberg also shines in a meaty small role, making the most of every scene without being a hog.

Of course, DiCaprio is the golden boy. He’s a great actor with the ability to bury himself in any role, but he’s also a movie star in the classic sense of old Hollywood. His star quality – the essence of Leo – remains, so that each role he takes doesn’t turn out to be just another actor with terrific skills doing method. Has Scorsese found his new De Niro? Perhaps, that’s not even the question to ask, but Scorsese has found another actor who can take his pictures to the next level.

As good as The Departed is, the warts show. Sometimes, the entire thing seems like an exercise in boys behaving badly – a chance for a bunch of actors to be hard killers and butt kickers – nihilism in abundance. Leo and Martin make sure that those warts only seem like blemishes on perfection.

9 of 10

Saturday, October 21, 2006

2007 Academy Awards: 4 wins for “Best Motion Picture of the Year” (Graham King), “Best Achievement in Directing” (Martin Scorcese), “Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay” (William Monahan), and “Best Achievement in Editing” (Thelma Schoonmaker); and 1 nomination for “Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role” (Mark Wahlberg)

2007 BAFTA Awards: 6 nominations for best film, actor (Leonardo DiCaprio) supporting actor (Jack Nicholson), screenplay-adapted, editing, directing

2007 Golden Globes: 1 win for best director-motion picture; 5 nominations for best motion picture-drama, motion picture-drama (DiCaprio), supporting actor-motion picture (Nicholson, Wahlberg), and screenplay-motion picture