Miguel Sandoval, Spike Lee, and Ossie Davis

Spike Lee’s ‘Do The Right Thing’ on Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Criterion Channel

Spike Lee’s vibrant, vital, thoroughly accomplished third feature is a provocative and intelligent exploration of race and racism that opens with a call to action and ends with a ferocious cry in the face of injustice.

‘Blade Runner: The Final Cut’ – the definitive version of a visionary film on Netflix and HBO Max

Ridley Scott’s visionary reworking of Philip K. Dick’s novel may have flopped when it was released but it has become a science fiction touchstone and has colonized the imaginations of writers, directors, and die-hard fans of science fiction.

Katharine Hepburn and Humphrey Bogart in John Huston's 'The African Queen'

‘The African Queen’ – Bogie and Hepburn on Amazon Prime Video and Criterion Channel

John Huston’s adaptation of C.S. Forester’s novel is a grand and romantic Hollywood adventure with two glorious performances, gorgeous locations, and a rickety, temperamental steam-powered boat as a memorable costar.

Robert De Niro in Martin Scorsese's 'Mean Streets,' starring Harvey Keitel, Amy Robinson, and David Proval.

Martin Scorsese’s ‘Mean Streets’ on HBO Max

“You don’t pay for your sins in church. You pay for them on the street. All the rest is bullshit.” Mean Streets (1973) is not Martin Scorsese’s first film, but it is the film in which he came into his own. Passionate, energetic, stylistically inventive and personally driven, it is the first mature, full blooded “Martin […]

Paul Muni is ‘Scarface’ in the original gangster masterpiece on Criterion Channel

The original Scarface (1932), loosely but boldly based on the notorious life and legend of Al Capone, didn’t invent the modern American gangster film. It blew it up. Films like The Public Enemy and Little Caesar had whetted the American moviegoing appetite for crime movies that reveled in vicarious thrills before delivering a sentence of […]

Last chance: The glory of Astaire and Rogers in ‘Swing Time’ on HBO Max

Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers were the most elegant of Hollywood’s dance teams in the golden age of American musicals and Swing Time (1936) is the peak of their ten-film output. The plot is as absurd as anything from the era: Astaire is a dancer and gambler who is set to marry his hometown sweetheart […]