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Jessi Jezewska Stevens' debut novel, The Exhibition of Persephone Q, is filled with exciting ideas and quirky characters, but the book's surfeit of style can't make up for a lack of personality or perspective.
The latest two Red Circle Minis, by Takuji Ichikawak and Kanji Hanawa, deal in archetypes; one set in the distant past, the other in the all too near future.
With his latest, The Cockroach, the otherwise masterful British novelist Ian McEwan proves that too much cleverness can kill satire.
A certain species that thrive in English departments and creative writing programs make good fodder for satire in Dana Schwartz's The White Man's Guide to White Male Writers of the Western Canon.
If director Riley Stearns sometimes loses his thematic bearings, he never forgets to deliver large, violent doses of comedy in the instant cult classic, The Art of Self-Defense.
As in the America of the 1970s -- with its political corruption, war, economic straits, and fatalism -- Robert Altman's Brewster McCloud resonates loudly in these times. Shall we join the circus freaks dancing on the grave of an absurd and unjust society?
Adjustment Day may not be peak Palahniuk, but it is nonetheless entertaining and twistedly educational, providing abundantly peculiar and original paths within one of his most astute and necessary social commentaries to date.
While Anthony Asquith's Shooting Stars and Underground look excellent on Kino Lorber's digital restoration, Arthur Robison's The Informer, looks most spectacular, thanks to working from the original negative and a tinted nitrate print.
Satire's American King Bret Easton Ellis Whites Himself Out with Alleged Work of Non-Fiction, 'White'
Let's pretend for a moment that Bret Easton Ellis is capable of such a staggering feat of truth-telling, and read White as if it is indeed a work of nonfiction.
In rendering his most avant-garde characters as members of a kind of self-help conspiracy in The Made-Up Man, Joseph Scapellato offers not an update but a revision of absurdism, and as such, many social phenomena ripe for satire get off easy.
Overlooking the Overstatement: On Shirley Jackson's "The Lottery" and Bojack Horseman's "Thoughts and Prayers" Episode
If Shirley Jackson's simple parable, "The Lottery", couldn't inspire self-reflection in an arguably simpler time, one has to wonder what messages today -- such as that of Bojack Horseman's "The Lottery" episode -- are falling on deaf ears in these times of increasing gun violence in America.
Adam McKay's gonzo Dick Cheney biopic satire, Vice, won't be compared to Shakespeare, but it shares the Bard's disinterest in supervillains' motivations.
Winner of the coveted Carol Tambor Best of Edinburgh Award in 2018, Ulster American is primed to contribute to societal narratives while lampooning contemporary injustices.
Not their first foray into bringing the short story form to cinema, the Coen Brothers' The Ballad of Buster Scruggs affirms, sadly, that in this regard, cinema is the lesser storytelling form.
In the Coen Brothers' The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, there's something altogether new about having revisionist western ideas filtered through their rich sense of character, black comedy, and their penetrating awareness of humanity's fatal imperfections.
Making Troy Great Again: On Shakespeare's 'Troilus and Cressida' and Trump's Ugly Political Rhetoric
The Trump presidency is Shakespeare's Troilus and Cressida made real – only it's stripped of the mythology and just lying bare and ugly for all to see.
The Death of Stalin is rarely out-and-out hilarious, but the performances are top-notch and the writing is thoroughly witty, entertaining, and thought-provoking.
Antoine Laurain's Smoking Kills is provocative and funny, but its meditations remain consistently mature.
Boots Riley announces himself a filmmaker to watch with an explosive racial satire that's as unforgettable as they come.
The college comedy deficit means that we are neither taught how to take a joke nor how to interpret one.
Bill McKibben's novel asks readers to value resistance movements that embrace humor, creativity, and civility while inspiring activism as part of our everyday lives.
There's a ghostly suggestion of Philip Roth's writing voice in Portnoy's Complaint in this novel; a relatively calm voice, this time in the third person, documenting the madness.