What Happened, Miss Simone? Recalls Philly’s Racist Past

From NinaSimone.com

From NinaSimone.com

Nina Simone wanted to be a classical pianist. In fact, the iconic star that we know as a soulful singer never wanted to sing.

These and many, many more revelations about the late performer can be found in the totally gripping Netflix-produced documentary What Happened, Miss Simone? The film chronicles the, at times, painful life of Simone—the suicidal thoughts, the terrible abuse of her husband, her manic-depressive behavior. What makes the documentary so effective is the huge amount of archival footage from interviews and live performances that you most likely have never seen before, even if you are a staunch Simone fan. Read more »

Questlove Named Music Producer of Upcoming Roots Remake

Photo by Jeff Fusco

Photo by Jeff Fusco

A+E Networks is taking on the gargantuan task of remaking the television version of Roots, which was adapted from Alex Haley’s decades-spanning tome that follows the author’s family from their homeland in Africa to America where they live as slaves. The original miniseries, which aired over several days, was a major event when it played on TVs in the late 1970s. Deadline has more on the premise:

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YOU’RE OLD ALERT: Clueless Turns 20 This Weekend

clueless

“Is this like a Noxema commercial, or what?”

It’s those first words uttered by Cher Horowitz (played by Alicia Silverstone) that began our love affair with Amy Heckerling’s Clueless, which hit theaters 20 years ago this weekend. Loosely based on Jane Austen’s coming-of-age novel Emma, the movie reminds us that even the most privileged among us can’t escape the sometimes-brutal pangs of entering adulthood.

All these years later, Clueless continues to resonate. Iggy Azalea recreated key scenes from the film in her video for “Fancy.” Countless designers have mimicked the film’s memorable fashion in their collections through the years. And it has a Tumblr following as strong as any modern movie out there.

There’s no doubt about it, Clueless is a certifiable cult classic—and its two-decade anniversary is something worth celebrating. I offer my hat tip via these 20 behind-the-scenes movie facts that you might’ve not known about Cher and the rest of the Clueless crew.

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Philly Film Society Brings Outdoor Movie Nights to Underserved Neighborhoods

Philadelphia Film Society (PFS) is bringing outdoor cinema out into Philly’s neighborhoods, venturing into four areas whose residents usually have to venture to Center City to enjoy such activities.

Movies on the Block is a free outreach program dedicated to uniting Philadelphia communities and breaking down social, economic and geographic barriers through the art of film. The series will offer much more than a couple hours of cinematic entertainment. PFS is collaborating with community leaders to bring celebratory activities to accompany each screening. The series will reflect each neighborhood’s unique character in an attempt to bring the community together through shared cultural experiences.

Each screening will begin at 8 p.m. in four local neighborhoods: Newbold (July 12), Belmont (July 29), Kingsessing (August 22) and Kensington (September 3).

The complete schedule is listed below, with trailers and information about the accompanying activities.

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12 Great Places to Catch an Outdoor Movie in Philly This Summer

All summer, organizations across the city are setting up their projectors to host free screenings of American classics, mega blockbusters and even a few Philly premieres. Spray on the bug repellant and lay out under the stars. If you’re looking for a cheep date or an evening activity the whole family can enjoy, here are some options to choose from.

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5 Best New Movies on Netflix Instant Streaming

As our biggest pre-summer TV series have begun to wind down (au revoir, Mad Men; see you soon, Game of Thrones), our attention can now be consumed by some new narratives. Here are some of our picks for the best and most interesting new offerings from Netflix streaming this month.

The High and the Mighty (1954)

I’m hardly what you would call a John Wayne devotee, but William Wellman’s high-altitude thriller is sharp, and well-constructed. Wayne plays a burned-out co-pilot of a trans-Pacific flight who suddenly has to take over the plane and land it safely when his pilot loses it. If the plot sounds vaguely familiar, you have to imagine it was one of the many inspirations for the ZAZ boys when they made the ribald Airplane! a couple decades later.

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Bradley Cooper, Kevin Hart Honored With Stars on Hollywood Walk of Fame

cooper hart

It’s pretty neat to see Bradley Cooper and Kevin Hart, two Philly boys, having their Hollywood heyday at the same time. Over the past few years, their names have been linked to phrases like “top box-office draw,” “No. 1 movie,” and “mega millions.” So it’s no wonder Tinseltown has chosen to immortalize them in concrete and star-shaped plaque form on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. 

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WATCH: That Time Air Bud Won The Women’s World Cup

Have you been feeling a little warmer recently? It’s not the temperature. You’re suffering from soccer fever, baby!

The Women’s World Cup is in full swing, and on Monday the United States defeated Australia, 3-1, in their first game. Tonight, the USA faces Sweden — expected to be the toughest test for the Americans in the group stage.

There aren’t many films about women’s soccer. Bend It Like Beckham is likely the best one. There’s also these two I’ve never seen. And then there’s Ladybugs, where Rodney Dangerfield cheats and puts a boy on the team.

Then there is the one where a dog wins the Women’s World Cup for the United States. Read more »

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