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Books

Nicholas Buccola's 'The Fire Is Upon Us' Is Obscured by the Smoke

Nicholas Buccola's The Fire Is Upon US is, at times, marred by glibness, impatience, and ahistorical tendencies that suggest, to an extent, it is also a reflective of the deteriorating conditions that mark our public discourse in 2020.

Recent
Film

Death Tripping Tibetan Style With Gaspar Noé's 'Enter the Void'

Reaching for the ultimate psychedelic experience, director Gaspar Noé found The Tibetan Book of the Dead, but did he know what he found when he crafted Enter the Void?

Television

Frank Sinatra Was a Strange Cat

For many, Frank Sinatra is a caricature of a bygone era, a static character whose legacy commanded more respect than his work. That's only part of the story-- and so is this.

Music

DJ Spooky with Kronos Quartet: Rebirth of a Nation

Did you ever get the urge to "remix" a movie? One that just really stuck in your craw like nothing else? DJ Spooky lives out an artistic wet dream on Rebirth of a Nation.

Film

Don’t Open That Door! #61: 'The Blob' (1958)

This week in our ongoing field guide to '50s horror and sci-fi movies and the creatures that inhabit them: those crazy kids save the world from marauding grape jelly in The Blob.

Books

A New Book Calls for a More Activist Black Church -- But That Might Be Easier Said Than Done

The difference between churches of service and activism is seen by the degree to which they hold to the philosophies of black theology, a school of religious thought that emerged in the wake of the racial tumult of the ‘60s.

Music

Justin Moore: Off the Beaten Path

Moore gives us a bunch of fun-loving, good-timey tunes with some great guitar licks along with...well...a couple songs that are wince-worthy.

Television

The Month In Pop Entertainment: January 2014

Ring in the New Year with new music, TV series, and a surprising amount of horror movies.

Interviews

Finding the Perfect Balance: An Interview with Albert Hammond, Jr.

The Strokes guitarist and solo artist talks about his new EP, the differences between working in a band and working on your own, and why he loves Frank Sinatra.

Reviews

'Iron Man 3', or, Guy Pearce Finally Has an Agent

With a set of top-notch performances and Shane Black's witty script, Iron Man 3 corrects the problems of its predecessor, although the special features here are not up to Stark Industry standards.

Reviews

'Évocateur: The Morton Downey Jr. Movie'

Évocateur makes the case for Downey's innovation and his insight into his audience, as it shows that his capacity for manipulation and his serial self-reinventions are simultaneously horrifying and estimable.

Film

How Does It End? Narrative Closure in the Marvel Universes

In Marvel's comics, narrative closure is always deferred, every ending a new beginning. Iron Man 3, with its now world weary characters and aging actors, draws attention to how live action is different from comics.

Music

Gary Clark Jr.: Seeing Is Believing

If you have a chance to check Clark out live, do so. He sounds fine in a studio setting, and I encourage you to grab his new disc. But like most of the better acts, especially of the jazz and blues idioms, he needs to be seen to be appreciated, and believed.

Music

Twin Shadow: Confess

George Lewis, Jr. sings to the cheap seats with aching abandon on Twin Shadow's sophomore album. He doesn't always make it, but his ultra-confident, high-gloss sincerity is more often than not pretty hard to resist anyway.

Reviews

With the Help of Holmesavision: 'Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows'

Those not so worried about the path this adaptation’s Sherlock Holmes is taking should enjoy going along for the ride -- by carriage, automobile, pony, or train -- on another boisterous adventure.

Music

Blind Boys of Alabama: Take the High Road

Few surprises, but there's no moment of this album that doesn't sound good.

Books

'The American Stage' Is Best Enjoyed As Theatre As Literature

A collection of 200-plus years of writing about the American theatre betrays a clear preference for the past over the present.

Music

'The Magic Garden' Revisited: Marilyn McCoo & Billy Davis, Jr. on Jimmy Webb

Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis, Jr. salute the genius behind 'The Magic Garden' and explain why YOU should hear "Requiem: 820 Latham".

Film

Vampires vs. Werewolves: An Immortal Pop Rivalry

Pop culture thrives on rivalries, but few are as epic as the one between werewolves and vampires -- a rivalry which predates Twilight by, oh, some 60 years.

Music

The Secret History: The World That Never Was

Michael Grace, Jr.'s long-awaited sequel to My Favorite crashes the British indie-pop class reunion. How does it fare?

Television

American Idol: Week #10, The Top Five

With Mad Marg gone, you no longer have to watch the show through your fingers, but things have gotten reliably lackluster, perhaps accounting for the show’s worst ratings since 2002, even getting tromped one night by Dancing with the Stars, for heaven’s sake, results that must have had Idol producers seeing visions of Paula Abdul in their sleep.

Music

Verse-Chorus-Verse: Issac Hayes and Public Enemy

Artist/producer PC Muñoz mines for gems and grills the greats.

Film

Summer of Same: May 2009

May's titles include the fourth films in two aging franchises, more Pixar perfection, and the reboot of a TV series from 40 years ago. And they say there are no new ideas.

Film

Part 5: Toy Story 2 to Titus (November - December 1999)

On this final day of PopMatters' 1999 overview, awards season hype gives way to pure acting prowess and definitive directorial flair.

Television

Death on a Factory Farm

In exposing animal cruelty, Death on a Factory Farm inspires your outrage, a first step toward changing weak laws.

Reviews

Sunshine Cleaning

Despite occasional nuances, we can see from a long way off where Sunshine Cleaning is headed.

Renee Scolaro Mora
Reviews

The Stewardesses 3D: 40th Anniversary Deluxe Edition

For those who enjoy movies for their sheer improbability, this is a goldmine of work poorly done but richly rewarded.

David Camak Pratt
Reviews

The Beverly Hillbillies: The Official Third Season

This is as complete a DVD set as any fan could wish for, and the comedy holds up incredibly well after more than 40 years.

Music

Roger Joseph Manning, Jr.: Catnip Dynamite

An absolutely irresistible aural explosion of sparkling, spaced-out power pop and platform-stomping glam rock!

Television

Independent Lens: Tulia, Texas

As Tulia, Texas follows the many turns of the Drug Task Force case, from the initial convictions to investigations of undercover agent Tom Coleman, it becomes a cautionary tale.

Reviews

New in Town

New in Town subjects Lucy (Renée Zellweger) to a series of life-changing revelations, most stemming from a reductive big city/small town dichotomy.

Renee Scolaro Mora
Film

The New Classics - The 30 Best Films of 2008

Unlike previous years, where classics came crawling out of the celluloid woodwork with regular reckless abandon, 2008 was more calm… and considered. That's not to say that choosing 30 top titles was hard. The difficulty in placing them in some manner of rank order suggests the actual depth of quality involved.

Film

Iconic - The Top 20 Male Performances of 2008

Like the gladiators of old, 2008 resembles a battle of formidable acting gods, especially when looking over the 20 choices presented below. Indeed, if anything, choosing a winner requires more of a leap of faith than any amount of critical skill - they all were that good.

Film

Are We Not Funny? Laugh, Damn You!

The problem with the (inexplicably popular) Tropic Thunder may be that Ben Stiller is just not a funny filmmaker. Not even remotely.

Music

20 Questions: Larry Love of Alabama 3

Larry Love of Alabama 3 may be 'sick' but he ain't dead, yet. He claws his way out of a groovin' but dark, existential place to answer PopMatters 20 Questions.


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