Frederick Wiseman

By: Mimi Lipson

The documentary films of FREDERICK WISEMAN (born 1930) are usually set in institutions and have institutional titles like Hospital and High School and Welfare. His work is often called cinéma vérité, but it’s a term […]

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Divine

By: Mimi Lipson

“Just because you got them big udders don’t make you something special.” So says Earl Peterson (DIVINE, born Harris Glenn Milstead, 1945-88) to Dawn Davenport (Divine, again) in two of her greatest roles. And Earl […]

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Preston Sturges

By: Mimi Lipson

Filmmaker PRESTON STURGES (1898-1959) made a joyful mockery of the Hays Code with his improbably wholesome card sharks, unwed mothers, imposters and flimflammers, his ballot box stuffers, shoplifters, party girls and bigamists. “I can’t keep […]

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Don Marquis

By: Mimi Lipson

Novelist, poet, and newspaper man DON MARQUIS (1878-1937) was once a household name. Now he is mostly remembered for his Archy and Mehitabel story-poems. Because they are about creatures (a cockroach and an alley cat, […]

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Shirley Muldowney

By: Mimi Lipson

In 1965, SHIRLEY MULDOWNEY (born 1940) beat down the doors of the National Hot Rod Association and became the first licensed female drag racer. And despite the signature pink cars monogrammed with her nickname, “Cha-Cha” […]

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Bruce Dern

By: Mimi Lipson

With his casual athleticism and big white teeth, with his good-looking features that somehow fail to coalesce into good looks, BRUCE DERN (born 1936) is the dropout personified — the kid who had every advantage […]

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