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Stories written by wnmvmorehead

Actor’s wide-ranging genius balanced comedy, drama

It’s claimed that Larry Hagman despised I Dream of Jeannie, the hit show in which he starred from 1965 to 1970. It’s a shame if so, because Hagman, who died last weekend at 81, was really good on it. He was likable as Major Anthony “Tony” Nelson, an astronaut who finds a genie in a […]

Old Bisbee cuisine:a fave lunch spot closer to home

One day Hercules got in a fight with the river god Achelous, and tore off one of his horns. According to Ovid, the river spirits gave the appendage to the goddess Abundantia, and it became the Cornucopia, or Horn of Plenty, endlessly showering out goodies upon lucky mortals. Who would have guessed this handy item […]

How-to’s of comic wizardry on stage again in new series at Tempe Arts Center

One person probably can’t teach another to be funny. On the other hand, if there’s funny somewhere inside a person, that person can probably be taught to use it to best advantage. This is what Tony Vicich has been doing for more than a decade now. A veteran stand-up comic himself, Vicich has been teaching […]

Animated ‘Ralph’ one of genre’s 2012 bests

When your name is Wreck-It Ralph and you no longer want to wreck things—well, what you got there is an existential drama. The title character in Disney’s computer-animated feature is a burly thug in bibs, with two huge fists which he uses, spitefully, to inflict damage on a building. His counterpart is an insufferably chipper […]

Could your prof be a zombie?

Suppose one day the dead arise and come plodding through the streets, driven by a ghastly, inexplicable compulsion to devour the flesh of the living. Those bitten by these walking corpses soon become mindless, ravenous cannibals themselves. Government fails to contain the plague. Survivors frantically arm themselves, overrun houses or take refuge in shopping malls, […]

Monster mash-up stars season’s usual favorites

October is here at last—my favorite month, when the weather in Arizona at long last cools down, and monster-movie season heats up. This season, animated monster pictures for kids are quite the thing. There are three to choose from in theaters now: Frankenweenie Tim Burton’s gives the boy-and-his-dog movie a macabre but touching spin in […]

Grimaldi’s: Where everybody knows your name . . . unless you’re ‘Frank,’ that is

A firm handshake grips you, and the guy attached to it elaborately compliments your kid. It’s the sort of warm welcome you might expect at somebody’s home, but Frank is working the door of Grimaldi’s Coal Brick-Oven Pizzeria, in the Casa Paloma shopping center at Ray and the I-10. The pizza there is New York-style, […]

McConaughey lethally convincing as ‘Killer Joe’

What happens when the hit man you hire to murder your mother falls in love with your younger sister? That’s the major dramatic question of William Friedkin’s new film Killer Joe, opening this weekend at Camelview. The answer isn’t pretty. Chris (Emile Hirsch), a small-potatoes Texas drug dealer, lives with his mother.  His slow-thinking father […]

Former Harkins theater is site for new MCC venue

Despite the stereotype of the academic world as an ivory tower where manual labor is studiously avoided, the shovels have been flying lately on the campus of Mesa Community College—the newest part of the campus, that is. Dignitaries from the school, city government and the MCC community dug in the dirt Aug. 6 during groundbreaking […]

‘Super-villainy’ as real in life as in film depiction

Just as it was difficult to discuss 2008’s The Dark Knight out of the shadow of the heartbreaking loss of Heath Ledger, so it’s likely to be difficult, for a while at least, to discuss The Dark Knight Rises out of the context of the horror at the multiplex in Colorado. As it happened, I […]

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