Lloyd Corrigan (left) and José Ferrer in Cyrano de Bergerac

McCarthyism at the Oscars

As José Ferrer was being handed his Oscar—making him the first Latino actor to win—he was being investigated by the House Un-American Activities Committee.
A still from The Lodger, 1927

Hitchcock’s Transition from London to Hollywood

In England, Alfred Hitchcock cultivated a comedic sensibility that shines through in his Hollywood thrillers.
A Moog synthesizer

The Fear That Synthesizers Would Ruin Music

A German musicologist complained in 1954 that they reminded him of "barking hell-hounds."
The Witcher

Why Netflix’s The Witcher Is a Gamble

TV shows based on video games can't capture all the little minutiae that captivate gamers, like the map in the instruction manual.
A scene from The Christmas Angel

The Theatrical Magic of The Christmas Angel

The silent film director Georges Melies made a unique and wonderful Christmas film by borrowing the theatrical techniques of French “feeries.”
from The Battle of San Pietro

The War Documentary That Never Was

John Huston's 1945 movie The Battle of San Pietro presents itself as a war documentary, but contains staged scenes. What should we make of it?
Santa Claus Conquers the Martians

How Local TV Made “Bad” Movies a Thing

Weekly shows on local TV stations helped make the ironic viewing of bad movies into a national pastime.
Mary Pickford, 1916

Mary Pickford Knew Not to Take the First Offer

When the 17-year-old actress auditioned for her first film, director D.W. Griffith offered her $5 a day. That wasn’t good enough for Mary.
Simone Simon in movie art for the film 'The Curse Of The Cat People', 1944

Dial Meow for Murder

Notes on the figure of the feline in horror.
Sailor Moon mid transformation

Selling Toys with the Sailor Moon Transformation Sequence

From her nails painted glossy red to the tiara appearing on her forehead, if you time it out, the transformation in Sailor Moon lasts 40 seconds.