Posts Tagged ‘CTV’


From TV, eh’s interview with Richard by writer Greg David: “Richard Crouse has made a career out of interviewing people. The veteran film critic is a regular contributor to CTV News Channel, CP24 and hosts The Richard Crouse Show on Newstalk 1010. He’s a staple of TIFF and asks the questions we want answers to when it comes to actors, actresses, directors and anyone else involved in the entertainment business…” Read the whole thing HERE!

Richard’s CTV NewsChannel reviews with Jacqueline Milczarek.

Screen Shot 2014-04-11 at 3.47.41 PMFilm Critic Richard Crouse takes a look at Kevin Costner’s performance in ‘Draft Day’, and Jude Law’s role as a gangster in ‘Dom Hemingway’.

Watch the whole thing HERE!



Screen Shot 2014-04-11 at 3.50.59 PM Where to watch the Oscars in T.O.! Free popcorn and a special bubbly menu!

imageDrake Hotel

Join CTV’s Richard Crouse at one of Toronto’s trendiest hotels while cheering on your picks for Best Film. There will be free popcorn and a special bubbly menu available for guests.

Where: 1150 Queen St. West

When: 6 p.m.

Cost: Free

Read more HERE!

Can Ricky Gervais keep the audience laughing for the entire Golden Globes? by: Sheri Block Date: 1/13/2010

golden-globe-awardsjpg-63caeea73a21f6b6Presenting an award at last year’s Golden Globes with a drink in hand, going off script and making his annoyance known about not being nominated, didn’t seem to hurt Ricky Gervais’ credibility.

In fact, the impromptu banter with the audience likely helped him land the hosting spot for this year’s show, airing Jan. 17 at 8/7C on CTV.

Gervais casually sipped his beer and talked about how he couldn’t believe he didn’t get acknowledged for his role in “Ghost Town,” especially since the Hollywood Foreign Press Association told him how much they loved the movie.

“Not enough obviously. Brilliant. What a waste of a campaign! That’s the last time I have sex with 200 middle-aged journalists,” quipped Gervais.

“It was horrible. Really. A lot of them didn’t even speak English. Europeans with wispy beards. The men were worse.”

It left the audiences in stitches and obviously left quite the impression on the association as this marks the first time the 67th annual awards, which honour the year’s best in film and television, have had a host since 1995.

“That may be exactly the reason they brought him on is because he’s not afraid to just have a little bit of fun with it all,” says Richard Crouse, Canada AM movie critic.

Some of the funniest moments in recent awards show history have actually come from Gervais but can the British funnyman keep the crowd laughing for the entire ceremony?

Crouse believes he can.

“He’s a very gifted improvisational comic so he can really go with whatever the situation might be, so if things go wrong, I think he can probably turn it around into something really funny.”

Gervais is best known for co-creating and starring in BBC’s “The Office” and “Extras” and has also found success in Hollywood with 2008’s “Ghost Town” and 2009’s “The Invention of Lying.”

At previous award shows he’s done everything from commend Kate Winslet for listening to him about doing a Holocaust movie to get the awards to come in (making reference to a cameo she made on “Extras” a few years earlier) to poking fun at Steve Carell – his counterpart on the U.S. version of “The Office.”

During the 2008 Emmys, Gervais made reference to Carell accepting an award in his absence the year before and that he now wanted it back. He badgered Carell, who was sitting in the front row, until he surrendered the Emmy. Carell was obviously in on it but the shtick was hilarious none the less.

The following year at the Emmys, Gervais called it the greatest awards ceremony in the world, making reference to how at the Oscars and the Golden Globes the room is always filled with film stars who have “jaw lines and chiseled looks,” making him feel bad about himself, but in this room he is above average. He again poked fun at Carell, saying that in this crowd even he’s considered handsome.

With Carell up for a Best TV Actor in a Comedy or Musical award for “The Office” this year, it’s possible Gervais might have a similar trick up his sleeve. But the actor has previously said he plans to play his hosting duties loose and off the cuff, taking cues from Frank Sinatra and the rest of the Rat Pack.

“I think it will be well planned in advance but by the time he gets on stage he’ll probably end up throwing out the script,” says Crouse. “That seems to be from my estimation of him the way he works.”

Whatever he does, Crouse is confident Gervais will bring even more unpredictability to the typically booze-filled affair.

“I think he’ll just have kind of an irreverent sense of fun with the whole proceeding and keep the show motoring along.”

Hugh Jackman: Sexiest Oscar Host Alive? Thu. Jan. 22 2009 Sheri Block,

oscar_host_hugh_jackman_opens_the_81st_academy_awa_1756295475Anyone want to make a prediction on how Hugh Jackman will open the Academy Awards?

He could start with a joke. Or he could come out in gold lamé pants, gyrating his hips while he sings a Broadway tune and pull an unsuspecting actress out of the crowd to bump and grind along with him.

Wait, he already did that the last time he hosted a major awards show.

It was part of his performance at the 2004 Tony Awards, where he reprised his role in “The Boy From Oz,” which earned him a trophy for Best Actor that same night. As well as impressing the crowd with his uninhibited hips, he did such a good job hosting that he received an Emmy Award the following year.

So he can sing, dance, act and host. But is he funny?

Some are calling Jackman an unusual choice to host the Oscars, considering the trend for many years has been to enlist people who have nothing to do with movies at all — stand up comics and TV hosts such as Ellen DeGeneres, Chris Rock and Jon Stewart.

Critics have already doubted the 40-year old actor’s abilities; with journalists from the Los Angeles Times and New York Times saying he had style and sex appeal but not enough substance.

But organizers say they want to shake things up this year and People Magazine’s newest “Sexiest Man Alive” may be the one to do it.

Canada AM movie critic Richard Crouse thinks they may be right.

“I think Hugh Jackman is an all-round entertainer, in sort of the truest sense of the word,” says Crouse. “It’s sort of an old-fashioned kind of saying but he can sing, he can dance … he’s also a movie star and I think that it’s kind of appropriate that you have an actual movie star hosting the Academy Awards.”

No one’s sure what Jackman’s going to do and it sounds like that’s the way the Academy wants it.

Crouse says the opening monologue will likely be eliminated, which will shorten the time of the epic-length program.

“I think it will be really straightforward. Hugh Jackman will come out looking terrific in a tuxedo, welcome everybody and say, ‘And now let’s get to the awards.’ I think it will be that simple and I think that’s what the Academy Awards needs, is to be streamlined a little bit like the Golden Globes.”

New Academy Award producers Laurence Mark and Bill Condon have much faith in their host, calling Jackman a “consummate entertainer and an internationally renowned movie star.”

“He also has style, elegance and a sense of occasion,” Mark and Condon said in a joint statement. “Hugh is the ideal choice to host a celebration of the year’s movies and to have fun doing it.”

Jackman has never won an Oscar himself, but was nominated for a Golden Globe in 2002 for the fantasy rom-com “Kate & Leopold.”

He’s done a mix of romantic comedies, dramas and action movies in his acting career, from “X-Men” and “Van Helsing” to “The Prestige.”

Although his most recent flick “Australia” with Nicole Kidman got lukewarm response, there’s already buzz about the upcoming “X-Men Origins: Wolverine.”

Successful Oscar hosts of the past have been able to find the right combination of wit, charm and self-deprecating humour. They also had to be careful not too poke too much fun at the stars or the Oscars themselves, as Hollywood takes themselves very seriously – a lesson Chris Rock learned the hard way.

So what does Jackman need to do to pull it off?

According to Crouse, he just has to keep it going.

“Keep the pace really fast,” he says. “Don’t try and do things you’re not really comfortable with. Don’t try and be funny. If you’re not good at telling scripted jokes then just don’t do it. Stick with a song and dance routine and let that be the end of it.”

Can Hollywood beat the recession blues? Sun. Jan. 4 2009 Constance Droganes, entertainment writer,


Will it be lights, camera, action as usual in Hollywood in 2009? Yes and no.

Heroes triumphing over gloom and doom on the big screen have been Hollywood’s bread and butter for more than eight decades. But does the world’s dream capital have what it takes to survive a recession?

Absolutely, says Patrick Corcoran, director of Media and Research at the National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO).

“Right now movie theatres are doing remarkably well,” says Corcoran, who spoke to from North Hollywood, Calif. In fact, according to NATO’s data, box office admissions have gone up in five of the last seven recessions.

“From the beginning of September, when the credit crunch really took hold, to the beginning of December we’re up 15 per cent in box office and 9 per cent in admissions. That’s compared to the same period last year,” says Corcoran.

That growth, according to Corcoran, is linked to the nature of the fall releases consumers have had to choose from in 2008.

“Last year during the autumn there were a lot of heavy dramas in the theatres — movies about Iraq, a lot of independent films that were eating each other’s business. The box office was truly terrible,” says Corcoran.

“What drives the box office is what’s available at the theatres,” says Corcoran. “If there are movies that people really want to see, they’ll go out and see them regardless of the economy.”

Great Depression didn’t stop movie-goers

Of course, studio execs are the first to tell us that even in the midst of the Great Depression, when more than a quarter of the population in the United States was out of work, people still managed to scrape together the pennies it took to go to the movies.

Today’s a different story.

According to a recent survey done by Forrester Research, those aged 25 to 34 were the most willing to sacrifice a night at the multiplex or premium cable if money gets tight. High-speed Internet was the main thing they couldn’t live without.

Maybe rising Baby Boomer numbers will compensate for that trend? But in the U.S. alone there are 60 million homes with high-speed connections. With endless entertainment choices available today– free movie downloads topping the list — will Internet-age consumers still rush to the movies?

Corcoran believes they will.

“Even when people are cutting back, movie theatres will still have the advantage. People will still want to get out of the house and in a recession movies are the least expensive form of entertainment,” says Corcoran.

Biz battens down the hatches

Driven by that mentality, studios are sinking more than a half-billion dollars into productions for their 2010/2011 calendars – and that’s despite the ongoing threat of a SAG strike, something that could cost big studio productions as much as $500,000 a day.

“Hollywood is never going to go away,” says Canada AM critic Richard Crouse. “Every time something bad happens people say it’s going to be the death of movies. Then everyone runs to see ‘The Dark Knight’ or “Shrek the Third” and these movies make hundreds of millions of dollars.”

The figures don’t lie. In 1929 – the start of the Great Depression — Hollywood raked in $720 million. In 2007, that figure exploded to $9.6 billion.

Who knows? In December of 2008 Jeffrey Katzenberg, the CEO of DreamWorks Animation, told a Toronto audience that 2009 would the year of 3D. Maybe that hot trend will help pad Hollywood’s coffers with even more mega-millions?

But in an era where the cost of making and marketing movies has become astronomical and studios are facing huge credit crunches, less risk and more care on the spending side of the industry will be the modus operandi in Hollywood for the foreseeable future.

“Hollywood will survive. But I don’t think we’re going to see as many $20-million paycheques for stars,” says Crouse.

Studio co-productions will also be on the rise.

“Ten years ago it would have been unheard of to see Warner Bros. and Paramount working together on a big movie like a ‘Benjamin Button,'” says Crouse.

In May of 2004, in fact, Warner Bros. and Paramount Pictures joined forces to get this $150-million film onto the silver screen.

As Corcoran says, “When you’re worried about protecting your bottom line you go to co-productions to spread out the risk and costs up front.”

Superbad is super-successful

Finally, those like Judd Apatow who can churn out comedies on the cheap could become Hollywood’s top dogs in 2009.

“In tough times like these good, fun stories are what Hollywood wants to see,” says Corcoran.

Moreover, Hollywood will want films that can turn a huge profit — something Apatow proved he could do with such films as 2007s “Superbad” (budget: $20 million, worldwide take: $$169,871,719) and “Knocked Up” (budget: $33 million, worldwide take: $219 million plus according to

As Crouse says, “We’re headed for a period where we’ll see a lot of safe filmmaking. You won’t see Zac Efron doing Hamlet. But you may see him singing and dancing in a remake of ‘Footloose.’ It’s ‘High School Musical’ a year later. But the movie is essentially the same thing.”

And for those looking for riskier movie fare? “The really interesting stuff will come from independent films,” says Crouse. “You won’t see anything remarkably different coming out of Hollywood studios for a long time. Not until things turn around.”

Hollywood icon Paul Newman dead at 83 Sat. Sep. 27 2008 10:54 PM ET News Staff

paulnewman2-1Hollywood legend Paul Newman, who won accolades for his roles in films such as “Cool Hand Luke” and “The Sting,” has died at age 83.

Newman, who had been battling cancer, passed away at his home near Westport, Conn., on Friday with family and friends by his side.

Newman’s movie career began in the 1950s and spanned six decades, making him one of the industry’s best-known stars. He often played rebellious mavericks and cultivated an enduring image of masculine cool that transcended his films and made him a cultural icon.

Alongside his wildly-successful motion picture career, Newman was a business man and race car driver who placed in the top five at some of the most competitive races in the U.S. during the 1970s.

The 10-time Oscar nominee was also an acclaimed director and a philanthropist who donated millions of dollars to charity.

Canadian actor Christopher Plummer, who first met Newman in the 1950s, said the blue-eyed thespian was a selfless anomaly in Hollywood.

“I miss him like mad,” Plummer told CTV Newsnet Saturday afternoon.

“He was modest, he shunned fame – he was an actual real person for a change,” he said, adding that Newman was a modest, generous man who lived modestly despite his international fame.

“He was totally un-actorish,” said Plummer.

In the early 1980s, Newman started up the “Newman’s Own” brand as a way to sell his homemade salad dressing. The company, which also made popcorn, spaghetti sauce and other products, has turned into a multi-million dollar business which has donated $175 million to charities.

Even in his 60s and 70s, Newman kept up an impressive production pace with such films as “The Road to Perdition” and “Message in a Bottle.” However, the star pulled out of a plan to remake the play “Of Mice and Men” last spring because of health problems.

Even some of Hollywood’s biggest names were star struck by Newman.

“He’d slug me if I was to call him an icon that I was intimidated by,” said actor Tom Hanks in 2002 after the pair worked together on “The Road to Perdition.”

“But he’s much more than anything you’d expect. He’s much more relaxed, unassuming. He gets it. He understands that the biggest job of being an actor, the hardest thing to do is to really capture 45 seconds of truth on film in the course of a long day.”

Newman won three Oscars in his career, including two honourary trophies and a win for his turn in the pool-shark flick “The Color of Money,” which teamed him with Tom Cruise.

“There is a kind of empathy he has shown throughout his career for this kind of underdog,” said director Robert Benton of Newman in 1994.

“He just feels what they’re going through from the inside, just feels them. He loves the way people just barely get by.”

Newman, who married in 1958, also worked with his wife Joanne Woodward in films such as “Rachel, Rachel.”

Despite Newman’s heartthrob image and his bad boy onscreen persona, the couple’s long marriage was an anomaly in Hollywood.

When asked by Playboy if he was ever tempted to cheat on his wife, Newman replied, “I have steak at home, why go out for hamburger?”

Though Newman got a relatively late start in the acting game, within a few years of his film debut in 1955’s “The Silver Chalice,” the actor was a major force on the big screen.

In 1958, Newman starred alongside Elizabeth Taylor in the celluloid version of Tennessee Williams’ “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.”

Three years later, Newman was cast as a pool shark in “The Hustler,” which would become one of the actor’s best-loved roles.

In 1967, “Cool Hand Luke” was released to critical and commercial acclaim, with Newman playing a rebellious convict bucking against authority. The character struck a chord with audiences and seized on the era’s anti-establishment mood.

Though other commercial and critical successes followed in the 1970s and 1980s, it wasn’t until Newman reprised his pool hustler role with “The Color of Money” in 1986 that he won his first contemporaneous Oscar.

With his famous blue eyes and handsome features, Newman was the typical Hollywood heartthrob, film critic Richard Crouse told CTV Newsnet on Saturday.

“He really set the template for the modern movie star,” he said, pointing to today’s stars like Brad Pitt and George Clooney who split their time between film work and philanthropy.

Newman also blazed a trail for younger actors by picking tough underdog roles, such as his turn as a convict in “Cool Hand Luke.”

“There’s so many iconic images that are associated with him,” added Crouse, pointing to his buddy roles with Robert Redford in the massive films “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” and “The Sting.”

“He went beyond just being an attractive screen stud and became a really interesting actor, who brought something unique to every role he did.”

Small Wonders Wed. May. 7 2008 by Constance Droganes

25038874“Iron Man,” “The Hulk” and “Indian Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” will score big blockbuster gold this summer. But 2008’s hot, small-budget summer flicks prove that size isn’t everything.

Hidden amidst the mega-million marvels like “Iron Man “and “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” is an impressive new crop of small, independently made movies filled with quirky plots, big laughs and breakout performances. These low-budget long shots won’t make billions at the box office. But these alternatives to blockbuster madness should not be missed says Canada AM movie critic Richard Crouse.

“It all comes down to strategy,” says Crouse. With as many as 10 movies opening each weekend, smaller movies are often released against bigger Hollywood fare. It’s a counterprogramming tactic that lures in audiences looking for something different. In some rare cases it can even turn an obscure “art house” drama or documentary into a summer sleeper hit.

“Every year it costs more money to make movies and promote them. That’s not a problem for ‘Indiana Jones.’ But it is for smaller films,” says Crouse.

“When you’ve got an ‘Iron Man’ to contend with, which made more than $100 million in its opening weekend, good little movies can easily get lost in the shuffle,” says Crouse. “It’s a little too early to tell how they’ll do this season. But hopefully we’ll get some really interesting smaller movies opening against the big loud ones.”

My Winnipeg‘ (Late July/early August)
Directed by Guy Maddin

Topping Crouse’s small flick pick list is this gem from Canadian director Guy Maddin.   Done as a “docu-fantasia,” Maddin pays tribute to his hometown but in a way that pushes traditional documentary boundaries.

“‘My Winnipeg’ is one of those films that fans might think they won’t care about much. But I guarantee they will. After seeing it you’re going to have a lot of new ideas about Guy Maddin and Winnipeg,” says Crouse.

Filled with a singular visual style that has set apart “The Saddest Music in the World” director, Maddin skillfully uses his eye and his heart to capture the essence of Winnipeg and reinvent the documentary form along the way.

“Nobody makes movies like Maddin. They’re incredibly unique and look like nothing else,” says Crouse. “This film is extremely personal and very funny. But it’s also an engaging look at Winnipeg. I hope that people find their way to it because ‘My Winnipeg’ is worth it.”

Son of Rambow‘ (May 9, Toronto; May 16, Vancouver and Montreal; May 23, Victoria, Calgary, Edmonton and Winnipeg)
Directed by Garth Jennings

Former school weenies of all ages will find this heartfelt tale a real summer charmer
Set in England of the early 1980s, a sheltered little boy who has never seen a movie hooks up with the school bully. After his new playmate shows him a pirated copy of “First Blood,” the first Rambo movie, the pair set out to make a home movie tribute to their favourite action hero.

“This is such a cool, sweet little movie,” says Crouse. “Even Sly Stallone gave the movie his blessing.”

Don’t be confused. “Son of Rambow” is not a Rambo sequel. But Garth Jennings’ film wields a weighty punch because of its young stars Will Poulter and Bill Milner, its poignant lesson about friendship, and its funny take on the perils of school life.
As Crouse says, “A lot of people gravitated towards this movie when it did the festival circuit last year. It’s one of those gems that could easily be overlooked during blockbuster season. But don’t miss it.”

The Foot Fist Way‘ (May)
Directed by Jody Hill

Blending insane humour with heartfelt spirit “The Foot Fist Way” could be the sleeper summer hit of 2008.

In it a gleefully inept Tae Kwon Do instructor runs a training centre in a small town strip mall.  His blissful mood changes, however, after he attacks the man who slept with his wife. Desperate to get his master instructor mojo back, this endearing loser heads on a pilgrimage to see his hero Chuck “The Truck” Wallace, the greatest martial artist of all time.

“The trailer to this movie makes me laugh like crazy,” says Crouse.  Shot in 2006 this kooky confection played a couple of festivals including Sundance, where Will Ferrell saw it.  “He was knocked out by it,” says Crouse. In fact, Ferrell was so smitten by this hilarious little gem that the Hollywood A-lister pulled some strings to secure a release date for it.

Ironically the batty story sounds like something Ferrell could have starred in. But as Crouse says, “We many not know director Jody Hill and the film’s star Danny McBride yet. But that could all change by the end of the summer.”

The Babysitters‘ (May)
Directed by David Ross

Now here’s a film about a high school student with initiative.
In it we find Shirley Lyner (Katherine Waterston), a nice, attractive teen who makes good money babysitting for parents in her neighbourhood. Then one day a client (John Leguizamo) kisses this working girl as he gives her a ride home. The kiss scores the teen a bigger tip on top of her pay. She quickly learns just how well married men will pay to fool around with her. In fact, it’s a revelation that morphs this average adolescent into a call girl baroness who happily pimps out her teen pals to other dads in need of  a “babysitter.”

“This is a very dark drama and the subject will probably disturb most parents,” says Crouse. “But John Leguizamo gives a good performance in it as does Katherine Waterston. It should do well as a summer blockbuster alternative.”

American Teen’ (June)
Directed by Nanette Burstein
For those who think high school teens’ lives are boring these days the new documentary “American Teen” will change that opinion.

“It’s not like a John Hughes film and it’s certainly not like a lot of the ‘American Pie’ movies we’ve seen lately,” says Crouse. Yet in it director Nanette Burstein keeps serves up a riveting portrait of what it’s really like to be an adolescent in today’s crazy world.

Focusing on a group of Indiana seniors and their cliques, the universality of these kids’ never-ending drama and lip-glossy backstabbing will resonate with audiences across North America.

“Here’s a film that takes is a real, bull’s eye look at what it’s like to be in high school and the good and bad that goes along with it,” says Crouse. “It’s interesting. It’s eye-opening. I recommend this one highly.”

Lou Reed’s Berlin‘ (July)
Directed by Julian Schnabel

Julian Schnabel’s deft hand as a director scored him an Oscar nomination last year and the Best Director prize at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival for “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly.” Only time will tell if “Lou Reed’s Berlin,” Schnabel’s musical follow-up, will do as well.

Filmed over five nights at St. Ann’s Warehouse in Brooklyn, N.Y, Schnabel’s documentary captures the essence of the influential American musician who came to prominence in the mid-1960s as the guitarist and principal singer-songwriter of The Velvet Underground.

“Reed’s album ‘Berlin’ is known far and wide as the singularly most depressing album ever made,” says Crouse. “That said, Schnabel gives us a remarkable performance piece which documents Reed’s creative process as well as his delivery of the entire record.”

The Mother of Tears‘ (Late June/early July)
Directed by Dario Argento

A tour-de-force gore-fest filled with lesbian psychics, orgy-crazed witches and stylish disemboweling, “The Mother of Tears” is everything you won’t find in “Kung Fu Panda.” But for cult fans of Italian horror maestro Dario Argento, this graphic bone chiller will be the summer’s horror highlight.

“Summer blockbusters always try to appeal to as many people as possible. But often in the process hardcore horror fans get ignored,” says Crouse.  That’s not the case in this bit of Argento gold. The third part of a trilogy that started with 1977’s “Suspiria” and its 1980 follow-up “Inferno,”  “The Mother of Tears” is a return to form for the famed director says Crouse.

In it a young American student unwittingly opens an ancient urn that is found in a cemetery outside Rome. It triggers a series of violent crimes throughout the city, all of which signal the return of Mater Lacrimarum, the last in a centuries-old triumvirate of evil-wielding witches.

“This film is not for everybody and it probably won’t be talked about very much since its release falls right around the same time as ‘The Dark Knight’ and the new ‘X-Files’ movie,” says Crouse.  “But for anyone who loves Argento’s movies this one is a must-see.”

Choke‘ (Late July/early August)
Directed by Clark Gregg

Fans who loved 1999’s “Fight Club” will find the same kind of quirky punch in “Choke,” a film based on another Chuck Palahniuk novel.

Its premise is a wild one. A medical-school dropout who works as a historical animator at a theme park devises a clever scam to pay for the care of his Alzheimer’s-afflicted mother. Cruising the city’s best restaurants during his down time from sexual addiction recovery workshops, this hustler pretends to choke on food that he eats. He then allows himself to be “saved” by shaken fellow patrons who go on to send this conniving loser sizeable cheques for his recovery.

“The film stars Sam Rockwell, who is really one of the best and most underrated actors working today,” says Crouse. “Given the quirkiness of the story, if anybody can pull this one off, Rockwell can.”

Trumbo‘ (Late July/early August)
Directed by Peter Askin

Peter Askin’s documentary about Dalton Trumbo, the blacklisted Hollywood screenwriter of the late 1940s and 1950s, was a huge hit at the 2007 Toronto International Film Festival.

“Anyone who has an interest in film history should have a look at this one,” says Crouse.

In it, actors Michael Douglas, Liam Neeson, Paul Giamatti, Joan Allen and other actors read from Trumbo’s acerbic letters written during the time of his infamous exile from Hollywood. The best of these moments is Nathan Lane reading Trumbo’s letter to his son on the subject of masturbation.

“I remember talking to Donald Sutherland about this movie because he knew Dalton Trumbo,” says Crouse. “This film is really something. It will open a lot of peoples’ eyes to how Trumbo and the other blacklisted screenwriters in that infamous group called the  Hollywood Ten suffered.”

Hell Ride‘ (August)
Directed by Larry Bishop
Aging motorcycle dudes and testosterone-fuelled antics could make “Hell Ride,” the new film from director Larry Bishop, a summer winner with nostalgic “biker film” lovers.

“If this movie had been made in 1969 it would have been a huge hit. Now I don’t really know,” says Crouse. “But anyone who feels an affinity for those times and the stories of the Hell’s Angels will be drawn to this movie.”

In it, badass bikers, among them Michael Madsen, Dennis Hopper and David Carradine, get wrapped up in a convoluted plot to squash mutinous rivals and seek bloody justice. In some instances these hog masters seem more like rejects from a Sergio Leone western than modern crusaders out for vengeance. But that’s part of the small flick’s charm.

As Crouse says, “Guys like Hopper were Hollywood’s original film bikers. They were the counterculture guys in movies like ‘Easy Rider.’ I don’t know if ‘Hell Ride’ can beat that but it’s definitely one worth watching.”