Pauline Kael Wants People to Go to the Movies

By George Malko Audience January/February 1972 If fate ever condemns you to suffer through a really bad movie, pray that some quirk of same puts you in a seat next to Pauline Kael. She cannot make what is happening up there on the screen go away, but she can jolt you...

The Lady in the Dark

By Phillip Lopate New York Woman November 1989 Pauline Kael has just turned seventy. An important birthday; her house in the Berkshires is filled with flowers from well-wishers. “I don’t want you to get the wrong idea that there are always this many flowers around,”...

Hope and Glory

By Pauline Kael The New Yorker October 5, 1987 It’s hard to believe that a great comedy could be made of the blitz, but John Boorman has done it. In his new, autobiographical film, Hope and Glory, he has had the inspiration to desentimentalize wartime England and show...

Noodles

By Pauline Kael The New Yorker June 1, 1987 The title Tampopo, which is Japanese for “dandelion,” is the name of a fortyish widow (Nobuko Miyamoto) who is trying to make a go of the run-down noodle shop on the outskirts of Tokyo that her late husband operated. The...

Stop Making Sense

By Pauline Kael The New Yorker November 26, 1984 Stop Making Sense makes wonderful sense. A concert film by the New York new-wave rock band Talking Heads, it was shot during three performances at the Hollywood Pantages Theatre in December, 1983, and the footage has...

Something Wild

By Pauline Kael The New Yorker November 17, 1986 For seven decades of romantic screwball comedies, sexy, smart, funny women have been waking up heroes who, through fear or shyness or a stuffy educational background, were denying their deepest impulses. The women...

The Untouchables

By Pauline Kael The New Yorker June 29, 1987 Chicago circa 1930—AI Capone’s capital of crime—looks so much better than New York City looks right now that local audiences for The Untouchables may feel somewhat chagrined. Chicago still has solid traces of Louis Sullivan...

Tequila Sunrise

By Pauline Kael The New Yorker December 26, 1988 Michelle Pfeiffer tells Mel Gibson how sorry she is that she hurt his feelings. He replies, “C’mon, it didn’t hurt that bad,” pauses, and adds, “Just lookin’ at you hurts more.” If a moviegoer didn’t already know that...

Looking for The Real Thing

By George Malko The Stacks Reader July 30, 2019 When I met George Malko a few years ago he told me about his friendship with Pauline Kael which began after he profiled her for Audience magazine in 1972. Kael was the one who invited George to a press screening of...

Matthau’s Love for the Long Shot

By Brad Darrach People July 1, 1974 “I thoroughly disapprove of gambling,” actor Walter Matthau explains primly as he whooshes toward Hollywood Park racetrack in his bronze Mercedes at 80 mph. “But I’m too rich and it’s good for me to lose.” He chuckles wickedly,...

The Stacks Chat: Robert Ward

By Alex Belth Bronx Banter April 30, 2012 Robert Ward is a novelist, journalist, and screenwriter. He recently published Renegades, a collection of his magazine work from the 1970s and was kind enough to take time out of his busy schedule for a chat.   Alex...

The Stacks Chat: Rich Cohen

By Alex Belth Bronx Banter November 1, 2013 Rich Cohen’s new book, Monsters: The 1985 Chicago Bears and the Wild Heart of Football, is a keeper. I’ve been a fan of Cohen’s writing ever since my pal Steinski hipped me to Tough Jews. A few weeks ago I talked to Rich...