DAVID BIANCULLI

Founder / Editor

ERIC GOULD

Associate Editor

LINDA DONOVAN

Assistant Editor

Contributors

ALEX STRACHAN

MIKE HUGHES

GARY EDGERTON

ROGER CATLIN

KIM AKASS

GERALD JORDAN

TOM BRINKMOELLER

NOEL HOLSTON

 
 
2014
Sep
5
 
 
The women’s semifinals are played today, and there’s quite a contrast in both styles and track records. The first match, scheduled to start after 1:30 p.m. ET, pits unseeded Peng Shuai of China vs. No. 10 seed Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark.  Neither has yet won a major. After that, the other semifinal match pits No. 17 seed Ekaterina Malarova of Russia – who hasn’t won a tennis major yet, either – against No. 1 seed Serena Williams. Williams, so far, has won 17
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
Sep
5
 
 
This annual TV fundraising marathon occupies only an hour of TV time, yet it’s spread across more than 25 different television networks, including the four major broadcast networks – ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox – as well as such outlets as ABC Family, Bravo, E!, Encore, FXM, HBO, Lifetime Movie Network, MLB, National Geographic, Showtime, Starz!, TNT and VH1. Katie Couric hosts, and scheduled performers for this live showcase include The Who, and celebrity appearances are virtually n
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
Sep
5
 
 
Many Baby Boomers, such as myself, came of age at a time when we were introduced to Barbra Stanwyck as the tough matriarch on the prime-time Sixties Western The Big Valley. But once we did our homework, and started looking at old movies, going back more than three decades’ worth of Stanwyck’s films was nothing short of revelatory. Here she is, for example, way back in 1933, playing a shrewd and sexy woman who decides to use her charms to shoot her way up the social ladder – and
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
Sep
5
 
 
This delightful, fact-based 2013 movie stars Emma Thompson as the persnickety British writer P.L. Travers, author of Mary Poppins, and Tom Hanks as Walt Disney, the Hollywood filmmaker determined to bring her novel to the big screen. It was not an easy sell – but certainly makes this light-hearted film easy to watch. It goes down easily – no spoonfuls of sugar required.
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
Sep
5
 
 
This episode, the fourth in the series, is the last one provided to critics for advance review – and it’s the best of the bunch, bringing simmering conflicts to a boil, and also making the most of following the post-op care in the case of a particularly gruesome facial reconstruction medical procedure. You’ll know it when you see it – and I haven’t forgotten it since.
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
Sep
5
 
 
Let it be said that she spoke her mind. Joan Rivers was the Howard Cosell of comedians. People loved to hate her, hated to love her. Or teeter-tottered between the two extremes...
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
Sep
4
 
 
Look at all the people who, way back in 1986, collaborated on this superb coming-of-age period drama. There’s Stephen King, who wrote the novel on which it’s based. And Rob Reiner, who directed it. And River Phoenix, Wil Wheaton, Corey Feldman, Jerry O’Connell and Kiefer Sutherland, who starred in it. And don’t forget Richard Dreyfuss, who plays the adult writer looking back. Good look. Great movie.
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
Sep
4
 
 
This is complicated. Next week, CBS premieres Thursday Night Football, a midweek franchise it’s paid a lot – a lot – to televise this coming football season. Meanwhile, this week, NBC presents a special Thursday edition of its regular Sunday Night Football series, television’s most popular show. It’s the Seattle Seahawks, the defending Super Bowl champions led by QB Russell Wilson, against Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers. It’s bound to be a highly rate
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
Sep
4
 
 
Tonight’s episode is called “Hair Swap,” and investigates the theory about men having different responses to different female hair colors by having Garfunkel and Oates (Riki Lindhome and Kate Micucci) trading tresses – and becoming brunette and blonde, respectively, to see if anyone notices. And yes, attention is paid.
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
Sep
4
 
 
The hostage ordeal survived by Nessa (Maggie Gyllenhaal) eight years ago continues to haunt her – and to have an impact on her current negotiations regarding her initiative to make cable TV and the Internet more available in the Middle East. And the dangers she confronted so long ago are not necessarily all behind her…