Archive for December, 2015

WRIT Tops Holiday Radio Ratings For Milwaukee

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Neither rain nor sleet nor hail, or a combination of all three, can keep A. C. Nielsen from releasing the Milwaukee holiday radio ratings for December.

The ratings are courtesy of the radio industry report Tom Taylor Now. They appear below analysis free.

Except to say: Winners appear to be WKLH, up 1.0 share, and WTMJ, up .8.

Losers include country music WMIL down 1.1 share point and WISN, down .9.

And Christmas music on WRIT did not gain it any audience, or lose any.

The ratings, provided by industry newsletter Tom Taylor Now, represent a percentage of those listening to radio who are listening to a station in an average-quarter hour and measure listening by total audience, 6 years and older.

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Tarantino’s “The Hateful Eight” As Big As All Indoors

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“The Hateful Eight” is a great title in search a movie. Quentin Tarantino spends three hours looking for one without much success. But he has also committed an act of cinema that deserves to be acknowledged and applauded.

Tarantino is a genre dabbler whose style reflects the content of each film.

For his eighth film and his first western, he chose a style as big as all outdoors with 65mm lenses that haven’t been used since the 1960s and projecting in 70 mm Ultra Panavision at select theaters – the Marcus Majestic included – starting Dec. 25.

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Lawrence, DeNiro Offer Moments in Fragmented “Joy”

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The pleasures of “Joy” are purely personal and performance based.

The story and style? Not so much. Director David O. Russell again assembles his ensemble of Avengers, spearheaded by Jennifer Lawrence and  another eccentric supporting performance by Robert DeNiro.

While it is fun to watch these two bicker with each other and everyone around them, the volume of the squabbles, the fragmented storytelling style and the whiplash pace create a tonally disorienting, unconvincing and often incoherent experience.

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“Concussion” A Modestly Told Tale Of Doctor’s War With NFL

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In “Concussion” Mike Webster, Dave Duerson and Andre Waters – NFL players who suffered traumatic brain injuries – are each named in a deadly roll call. As they say at the start of each episode of “Fargo,” out of respect for the dead their names have not been changed.

When we meet them they are already concussed and desperately dealing with the after-effects of a life spent hitting people, including violent outbursts, drug use and dementia like symptoms leading to suicide.

It is not a pretty picture. However, little of how they got that way is shown.

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Lush “Carol” A Sorrowful Tale Of Period Gender Roles

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You’ll find no film more visually rich and sumptuous looking this season than “Carol.”

But neither man nor woman live on style points alone.

The man of this assessment is Todd Haynes, director of “Far From Haven” made in the trace image of the films of Douglas Sirk whose tear-jerkers were commonly known as women’s dramas but whose subtext was of gay men living in the shadows.

The woman is “The Talented Mr. Ripley” novelist Patricia Highsmith, who wrote the lesbian novel “The Price of Salt,” under a pseudonym and which has been adapted by Haynes.

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Critics Group Adds “Star Wars,” Turns Best Picture List Up To Eleven

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“Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens” may have won the hearts of a nation and be poised to set box office records, but one honor is being denied it – end of year awards.

Until now. On Tuesday after polling its members the Broadcast Film Critics Association decided to add the film to its list of best picture nominees, bringing the total to eleven.

The decision is not unprecedented. In 2000 the group similarly added “Cast Away” to its list after it was screened after the nominating deadlines. “Star Wars” is not eligible in any other category.

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Milwaukee Media Notes: WTMJ Anchors, Radio Vet Un-Retires, Ratings

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Photo credit AllAccess.com

Bill Hurwitz photo credit AllAccess.com

So much for retirement.

After 40 years in Milwaukee Bill Hurwitz, who brought Martini Radio is mixing drinks in another market.

Just weeks after retiring as vice president and general manager of Milwaukee Radio Alliance stations WLUM, WLDB and WZTI, Hurwitz has joined KCXX in San Bernadino as GM.

According to Radio Insight the station switched formats Tuesday from alternative music to Rhythmic Hot AC.

It is also switching call letters as well to KHTI.

The station is owned by Former Green Bay Packer Willie Davis and Duane Davis’ All Pro Broadcasting.

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“The Big Short” Captures All The Chaos Money Can Buy

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Give me your jobless and homeless, disappointed and disenfranchised. The recent economic recession didn’t invent these conditions but were fuel to a fire in whose flames, perhaps, Trumpism was forged.

To live through a crisis is the best way to understand it. But even those who lost jobs, homes and pensions can only look back and wonder WTF happened.

If you don’t know more about it after seeing “The Big Short” – opening Wednesday – it’s not for lack of trying by director Adam McKay.

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Critics Group Amends Best Picture List To Add “Star Wars”

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“Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens” may have won the hearts of a nation and be poised to set box office records, but one honor is being denied it – end of year awards.

Until now. On Tuesday after polling its members the Broadcast Film Critics Association decided to add the film to its list of best picture nominees, bringing the total to eleven.

The decision is not unprecedented. In 2000 the group similarly added “Cast Away” to its list after it was screened after the nominating deadlines.

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“Star Wars VII” Passes Lightsaber To New Generation

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Yes Virginia, “Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens” is worthy of the name.

The word iconic is tossed around carelessly but the characters and concepts George Lucas created in 1977 are as enduring as Mickey Mouse and Santa Claus.

So it’s fitting that Disney is putting the new chapter in this saga under the tree during this holiday season. “Star Wars” is the gift that keeps on giving.

As he did with “Star Trek,” director J.J. Abrams saves the universe.

But he doesn’t reinvent anything. He revives it, with help from Lawrence Kasdan, who wrote the last two films in the original series.

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