The late actor stars opposite Julia Louis-Dreyfus in the new comedy about a divorced TV archivist who falls in love with a divorced masseuse. David Edelstein praises Louis-Dreyfus' farcical timing, as well Gandolfini's ability to change his rhythm and demeanor.
The movie Brave is Pixar's first feature with a female protagonist — a medieval Scottish princess named Merida (voiced by Kelly MacDonald) who asserts her independence and wreaks havoc. Critic David Edelstein says the film is "pure Pixar in its mischievousness and irreverence."
The HBO miniseries Mildred Pierce is based on the 1941 novel by John M. Cain, replacing Joan Crawford -- who won an Oscar for the 1945 film version -- with Kate Winslet. TV critic David Bianculli says Winslet does wonders with her role -- and will be tough to beat, come Emmy season.
Book critic John Leonard reviews Sarah Maitland's new novel, which masterfully weaves together real dragons, the end of childhood, cancer, and Christian symbolism in a narrative that somehow leads to salvation.
Film critic Stephen Schiff says Streep is best in comedies -- including this dysfunctional tale about a mother and daughter in Hollywood, written by Carrie Fisher, and adapted by her book of the same name.