Caryn James writes the James on screenS film and television blog for and also contributes to other publications, including The New York Times Book Review. She has been a film critic, chief television critic and cultural critic at the New York Times and an editor at the Times Book Review. She is the author of the novels Glorie and What Caroline Knew, and has appeared as a film commentator on CBS Sunday Morning, Charlie Rose, Today, MSNBC and other programs.

God Complex

'Whatever you think you see in there, I’m not making it up.' Michael Sheen on his psychologically rigorous role in Masters of Sex—and his romance with Sarah Silverman.

‘What I Want to Do’

Hailed as an ‘abortion comedy,’ Obvious Child isn’t really about politics—it’s about a woman’s struggle with herself as a person. This wouldn’t work without the kind humor of Jenny Slate.

Family Business

Gia Coppola’s debut, ‘Palo Alto,’ an engaging and poetic teenage drama based on James Franco’s stories, ushers in another generation of filmmaking from the famous family.


In letters to the likes of Marlon Brando and Tennessee Williams, the director of On the Waterfront and A Streetcar Named Desire was shrewd about just about everything but himself.


The avant-garde director Alejandro Jodorowsky was supposed to make ‘Dune’ in 1975, starring Salvador Dali, Orson Welles, and featuring original music by Pink Floyd. What happened?


Five great directors did their patriotic duty by staging propaganda films, but they presented them to the public as authentic documentaries.

Office Humor

One More Thing: Stories and Other Stories is an absurdist, scathingly funny literary collection from Ryan from The Office. B.J. Novak on his surprisingly personal fictional debut.

Worst of Times

It was the secret affair that threatened the image of Britain’s famous family man. Ralph Fiennes talks about the unearthed cruelty at the heart of his new film, ‘The Invisible Woman.’


The relationship between a man and his operating system in ‘Her’ captures what so many of us find via technology: the convincing illusion of real, human connection.

One of the best novels of the year, Ann Patchett’s 'State of Wonder,' is an updated version of 'Heart of Darkness.' Here are four others.