Wednesday, February 24 2010
As in any existence, there are themes that become fully apparent only in retrospect; in Sampsell’s case, as with most of us, these overwhelming but at first hard-to-discern influences are embodied in family.
Tuesday, February 23 2010
Adrian Monk is slave to his obsessions, but he’s the master of his self. He's possibly even the master of the future of humanity.
Monday, February 22 2010
Frears and Hampton puts the viewer into Chéri in a very real and sensual manner, paying homage to Collette's luxuriant corporeal details.
Sunday, February 21 2010
A tribute to the signature interwar polymath: the historian, activist, dramatist, dockyard worker and teacher Howard Zinn.
Thursday, February 18 2010
While we are building identity in social networks, our online behavior generates a plenitude of information, meanings and content that constitutes a "cognitive surplus" generated by the "hive mind".
Wednesday, February 17 2010
I am choosy about what I eat, but continue to chow down on an unfettered pop culture diet as the last great excess that won’t kill me.
Wednesday, February 10 2010
'Catcher in the Rye' is a great novel, but it’s not good. When you're more Ferris Bueller than Holden Caulfield, it's hard to relate to his alienation -- no matter how much teachers want you to.
Thursday, February 4 2010
“The chief proof of a man’s real greatness lies in his perception of his own smallness. It argues... a power of comparison and of appreciation which is in itself proof of nobility.”
Sunday, January 31 2010
There's a higher ratio of disposable schlock in the memoir than in other literary genres, but the best memoirs permit access to lives strange, twisted, wasted, brave, and glorious -- lives, in short, other than our own.
Wednesday, January 27 2010
Ang Lee captures the '70s on film the way Rick Moody captures the era in the book The Ice Storm. It's the midst of the sexual revolution, the Watergate scandal is erupting, and the country's social consciousness is changing.
Sunday, January 24 2010
Without this guide "jack stropper" (someone who's trying to steal your woman), "dead cat on the line" (a problem from the past), or "my stomach thinks my throat's been cut" (powerful hunger) can leave you scratching your head.
Monday, January 18 2010
As the new millennium accelerates we witness our world consumed by an international economic crisis fueled by unrestricted consumption and greed. Hence, the relevance of Stephen King's 'Needful Things'.
Monday, January 4 2010
Bella and Edward's longing for each other is what makes the series so appealing. It fully encapsulates the bliss and agony of first love or any love that would make you lie down and die for the other person.
Thursday, December 17 2009
The myths of unspoiled frontiers and the freedom of the open road, lives played out on the margins of society, attachment and detachment, wrestling matches with the ghosts of Samuel Beckett and Louis L’Amour…
Wednesday, December 16 2009
According to Julian Barnes, the fear of death is "the most rational thing in the world." But denying the certainty of death also can be a rational act, at least until that time when it is not.
Sunday, December 6 2009
Philip K. Dick’s fiction is a defense of the validity of video games because despite the fact that they are not real, his stories argue that there is still something valid in the artificial.
Wednesday, December 2 2009
A scene shows Ryder blissfully tying up the manuscript and putting a rose under the string. That's rather like what Armstrong and the screenwriters did to the film: tied it up neatly with a pretty flower.
Monday, November 23 2009
Even anglers like myself yearn for guides with fishing IQs as rich as Squanto's, a Patuxet Native American who taught the Pilgrims how to fish.
Wednesday, November 18 2009
One bad novel, gallons of cheap red wine, and spring-fed creeks of sweat.
Sunday, November 15 2009
The popularity of the “pet memoir” can be traced to a lot of factors, ranging from honest sentiment to rank anthropomorphism. But our pets, and our books about them, reflect spirit of our age, as well.