Author Archives: admin

My chaotic encounter with composer Ennio Morricone

By Ray Bennett  LONDON – The late Ennio Morricone was a giant in film music but the Italian composer could be a difficult man as I found out when I went to interview him in London. He was in town … Continue reading

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Recalling Dan Tana’s barkeep Mike Gotovac, an L.A. legend …

By Ray Bennett LONDON – Legendary Dan Tana’s barkeep Mike Gotovac died aged 76 on May 15 following complications caused by Covid-19. He was among the many rich characters I encountered in my time in Los Angeles and I recall … Continue reading

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When Kenny Rogers welcomed me to Los Angeles

By Ray Bennett We flew into LAX from Toronto, checked into the Sportsmen’s Lodge in the Valley, went directly to the then open-air Universal Amphitheater and were led to seats in the front row just as the biggest entertainer in … Continue reading

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My wish list for the 2020 Oscars: ‘Little Women’

Best Picture My favourite film of the year is Greta Gerwig’s ‘Little Women’ with its splendid filmmaking, intelligent update of the story and wonderful performances. The film I admire most is Bong Joon-ho’s ‘Parasite’ with its biting satire, great comedy, … Continue reading

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Martin Shaw hasn’t always been a TV copper

By Ray Bennett Martin Shaw, who turns 75 today, is known best for playing TV coppers in “The Professionals” and “Inspector George Gently” but he also has had a long stage career in roles from Stanley Kowalski to Lord Goring … Continue reading

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It’s the ‘Royal Toy Story’ for Harry and Meghan

By Ray Bennett LONDON – In ‘Toy Story 4’, the beloved cowboy action figure contemplates leaving the old gang to go off with a beautiful outsider. In the United Kingdom’s version, the monarchy, a much-loved prince wants to do the … Continue reading

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Recalling Peter Cook and his effortless comedy

By Ray Bennett LONDON – Peter Cook, who died 25 years ago today aged 57, was the funniest person I ever saw and ever met. He was naturally, effortlessly funny but he was never ‘on’ in the way some comedians … Continue reading

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Why Erin Gray loved being in ‘Buck Rogers’ on TV

By Ray Bennett LONDON – Happy 70th birthday to Erin Gray – co-star in Ricky Schroder’s long-running Eighties sitcom ‘Silver Spoons’ and many other TV roles including Col. Wilma Deering in ‘Buck Rogers in the 25th Century’ … still busy today, … Continue reading

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FILM REVIEW: Martin Scorsese’s ‘The Irishman’

By Ray Bennett Martin Scorsese’s puerile veneration of low-life thugs and violent sociopaths reaches its apotheosis in his leadenly dull crime picture ‘The Irishman’, available now on Netflix. Over nearly three-and-a-half tedious hours, he takes a hoodlum named Frank Sheeran … Continue reading

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TIFF FILM REVIEW: Chinonye Chukwu’s ‘Clemency’

By Ray Bennett TORONTO – Alfre Woodard gives a profound and memorable performance in writer-director Chinonye Chukwu’s ‘Clemency’, a moving examination of the personal tolls exacted by the death penalty. Most such stories focus on the victim and the condemned … Continue reading

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