"Director William Friedkin receives the Lifetime Achievement Award ceremony during Sorcerer screening at the 70th Venice International Film Festival in 2013. First, he helmed “The French Connection,” which earned five Academy Awards including Best Picture and Best Director. And then came “Star Wars.” No, Friedkin didn’t direct “Star Wars,” George Lucas famously did that. But Friedkin’s next film, “Sorcerer" felt the impact of Lucas’s blockbuster when it opened June 24, 1977, one month after "Star Wars." And if you believe Friedkin (and many others), every film since has felt that same forceful impact. “‘Star Wars’ changed the entire zeitgeist of American film to what it is still today.
Two by two, a mass of animal species march onto the big screen — and into the pop culture canon — with this weekend’s “Noah.” Darren Aronofsky’s retelling of the Bible’s ultimate account of seagoing survival stars Russell Crowe as Noah himself. And (spoiler alert!) Noah’s double rainbow of animals, so to speak, proves unsinkable.