Top Fifty Films of the 80s — Number Six

#6 — Broadcast News (James L. Brooks, 1987) By the time I was in a college film class in the early nineties, the textbook was already citing the James L. Brooks screenplay for Broadcast News as a ideal example of how writing for film should work. Specifically, the author spent several pages marveling over the efficiency of Brooks’s dialogue in developing character. That’s for good reason: scene after scene, the conversations that happen between characters are natural, funny and engaging, but always have a deeper purpose. Brooks doesn’t build foreshadowing puzzles into the dialogue nor rigidly constructed plot point delivery. … Continue reading Top Fifty Films of the 80s — Number Six

Brooks, Buzzell, Freudenthal, Matzdorff, McKay

Best Foot Forward (Edward Buzzell, 1943). Less than a decade before a certain TV series elevated Lucille Ball to the stratosphere of stardom, she was merely the “Queen of the Bs,” which makes it a little odd to see her playing herself in this film about a cadet at a military academy who convinces the redhead to come be his date for a big dance. She’s also far removed from the ditzy whirligig persona that she’d soon be known for, playing scenes instead as the smartest person in the room with a disdainful, withering comment for everyone and everything she … Continue reading Brooks, Buzzell, Freudenthal, Matzdorff, McKay