Caryn James

Goodbye 'Gigli,' Hello the New Ben Affleck

In the company men, Bobby Walker is a Porsche-driving golden boy laid off from his middle-management job. He smugly expects an easy landing somewhere, but the economy has other plans, which is how he ends up delivering one of the most wrenching lines in a movie that's full of them: "I'm a 37-year-old unemployed loser who can't support his family."

Holiday Movie Preview

No one in their right mind leaves home to do their holiday shopping anymore—except to shop for a holiday movie. In our ongoing effort to help you save your money for more important things (food, for instance), we've made our annual guide the most user-friendly ever.

Nancy Mitford's Dirty Family Laundry

Nancy Mitford rejected an offer to reprint her pre–World War II satire Wigs on the Green, explaining to her friend Evelyn Waugh, "Too much has happened for jokes about Nazis to be regarded as funny or as anything but the worst of taste." She had other reasons to worry. The novel's bubble-headed heroine, Eugenia Malmains, was a portrait of Nancy's Nazi sister.

Movie Review: Taking Joan Rivers Seriously

We know Joan Rivers can be tacky, abrasive, self-mocking. On her way to winning Celebrity Apprentice last year, she berated professional gambler Annie Duke, screaming "You're a pokah playah—that's beyond white trash!"And the second season of her TV Land series How'd You Get So Rich? in which she gushes over homes of the nouveau riche—the gaudier, the better—has just begun. But culturally significant? Turns out she's that too.

TV Review: Tom Hanks's "The Pacific"

Deep into HBO's megabudget miniseries The Pacific, as Americans fight the Japanese in a gruesome battle to control tiny Peleliu island, a sensitive officer comforts a horrified young Marine, assuring him that the brutality is "worthwhile because our cause is just." It all seems so quaint: the idea that war is about controlling battlefields; the sentimental certainty that justice is on our side; and, most of all, the arrival of another old-fashioned World War II extravaganza that has no cultural...