Over twenty years after its initial publication in 1998, ) by returns from the shadows in a new and improved edition to his classic reference guide — new design, new photos, and new text that take us…

[Bill Arney, who passed away the other day, is known mostly as the hardboiled growl behind the curtain as the at the Castro Theatre. For most the festival’s run until 2020, it was he who introduced host and Noir City found before each screening…

One in an occasional series exploring life and lore in California Gold Country.

The North Star House, Grass Valley, CA

There’s so much we leave behind when we move. When my wife and I arrived in late 2020 at the Gold Country California town of Grass Valley, we’d left our share in the Bay Area: friends and…

Mountain View Cemetery, Oakland, CA

“No live organism can continue for long to exist sanely under conditions of absolute reality; even larks and katydids are supposed, by some, to dream.” —

Shirley Jackson — The Haunting of Hill House

“Belief is a wise wager. Granted that faith cannot be proved, what harm will come to…

Ahhh retirement!

Just the other day, I finally got fed up. I’d taken all I could stand, and I wasn’t gonna take any more. My face like a steaming stewed tomato, I marched right up to my Boss, stuck my finger right between his eyes and chewed him a fresh new one.

The World We Left Behind

For some, withdrawal from the world during Covid was the easy part.

In ways that some might find disturbing, the pandemic had little emotional effect on me. That may be because I’m a cautious stoic for whom danger is a given. (Call me “conservative” if you will, a once fine…

In his first trip to a movie theatre since the Big Lockdown began, your correspondent takes delight on the new film musical from the creator of Hamilton.

Somewhere, Busby Berkeley is smiling

What better way to stagger out from Covid’s dim cave into bright sunlight than by going to see the new film musical

(The most estimable movie star George Clooney has been making the rounds again with new movies, a school opening, and even an invite to all of us to join him and his wife, Amal, for lunch. Sound like fun? …

In which we consider Alan K. Rode’s immensely entertaining life of one Golden Age Hollywood’s best directors and how the crown of “auteurism” somehow escaped him.

Michael Curtiz directed so many Golden Age Hollywood classics — The Adventures of Robin Hood, Yankee Doodle Dandy, and, most famously, Casablanca — that…

Good summary bu tdon't forget Hitler's biggest, number-one blunder . . . being born.

Thomas Burchfield

The author of BUTCHERTOWN, a 1920s gangster thriller and DRAGON’S ARK, a contemporary Dracula tale, both published through Ambler House Publishing.

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