Pauline Kael

Latest Articles


Love letter

Rock critics rarely cut gold records. Likewise, few football reporters go on to quarterback Super Bowl winners.
Gerald Peary's ode to the film critic
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  September 04, 2009

Alive and well

The seventh annual Independent Film Festival of Boston
The seventh annual Independent Film Festival of Boston
By  |  April 17, 2009

Interview: Greil Marcus

Greil Marcus on rock-and-roll photography
Rock's critic-in-chief talks rock and roll photography
By CHRISTOPHER GRAY  |  January 21, 2009

Sweet smell of skill

Alexander Mackendrick, who's the subject of a tribute at the Harvard Film Archive this weekend, is a somewhat mysterious figure in movie history.
Alexander Mackendrick at the HFA
By STEVE VINEBERG  |  January 06, 2009

Review: Prince of Persia

Pauline Kael titled one of her review compilations Kiss Kiss Bang Bang , saying that those four words (from a Japanese movie poster) captured the basic appeal of movies.
Run, jump, die, repeat
By MITCH KRPATA  |  January 06, 2009

Tiger by the tail

The wild and woolly cinema of John Boorman
The wild and woolly cinema of John Boorman
By STEVE VINEBERG  |  November 18, 2008


Paul Newman (1925-2008)

Paul Newman, who died last weekend at the age of 83, was that rarest of creatures, a movie star who turned himself into a great actor.  
Remembering a movie star who turned himself into a great actor
By STEVE VINEBERG  |  October 01, 2008

Defending the universally loathed

Forsaken entities deserve a second chance.
The Phoenix looks with loving eyes at some of the worst people, places, and things in the world — and gives them a big hug
By PHOENIX STAFF  |  January 14, 2008

Kael? Sarris?

“Kael was a presence, a factor in how many of us do our jobs,” argued ’s Stephanie Zacharek.
The critics convene at the Coolidge
By GERALD PEARY  |  October 31, 2007


A cute and exceptional little boy, a lovable old geezer — you don’t have to be Pauline Kael to realize this formula is a winner.
Slips toward mediocrity
By PETER KEOUGH  |  July 24, 2007

Devine DVDs

Sure, we all know Get Smart! is out on DVD in time for the holidays, and the Superman films (all of them, going back to 1948), and Mission Impossible: The Ultimate Missions Collection , sure, sure, as if you could miss the bleating sirens of studio pu
Film-smart gifts for people who think they’ve seen everything
By MICHAEL ATKINSON  |  December 07, 2006


Out to Lynch

The three decade nightmare on film
By PAUL BABIN  |  December 07, 2006

Greatest hits

So that’s how World War II started.
Hits and misses
By PETER KEOUGH AND PAUL BABIN  |  September 22, 2006

Better than good

A couple of weeks back, in a small bar in Brooklyn, I witnessed an unlikely and wonderful collaboration. George Pelecanos reads an excerpt from The Night Gardener
George Pelecanos’s sweet Night
By CHARLES TAYLOR  |  August 22, 2006

A dying art?

We can’t compete with buccaneers of the Caribbean, but film reviewers lately have been getting a smidgen of respect, thanks to the keen attention paid American Movie Critics: An Anthology from the Silents Until Now .
Phillip Lopate collects America’s best film criticism
By GERALD PEARY  |  July 26, 2006

After Pauline

“Why Aren’t There More Women Film Critics?” was the subject of a January 31 forum at the Boston Public Library, and nobody on our panel came up with much of an answer.
Where are the women film critics?
By GERALD PEARY  |  February 09, 2006