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Books

How to avoid the next war

How to avoid the next war If you’re concerned about where Republican fear-mongering on the war on terror might lead us, don’t turn to the Democrats, who when it counted caved in to Bush on the Iraq War (and now mostly echo McCain/Palin’s position on the Middle East). Instead, go to clear-eyed foreign policy realists like Brent Scowcroft and Zbigniew Brzezinski… READ MORE >


Movies

Funny as Hell

Funny as Hell There’s a segment of the Tonight Show called “Jaywalking,” where Jay Leno asks regular Joes (“Joe Sixpacks”?) simple questions about history, politics, geography, etc. Considering the answers he gets, you’d think Burbank a social experiment gone wrong. Bill Maher, host of Politically Incorrect, adopts the… READ MORE >

(6) COMMENTS  |  TOPICS:    atheism | bill maher | religion | satire

Movies

Don’t Call Me Junior

Don’t Call Me Junior No one could accuse Oliver Stone of ducking controversy. But I don’t think anyone expected his new movie about the George Bush presidency, W., to be predictable and toothless, if intermittently amusing. In the era of the internet and insider confessionals, most of what appears on screen has already been widely circulated. What, Bush… READ MORE >

(5) COMMENTS  |  TOPICS:    george w. bush | presidency

Movies

For This Documentary Tells Me So

For This Documentary Tells Me So The idea that documentaries are unbiased truth is well-established nonsense, of course, but some filmmakers are better at covering their ideological tracks than others (the good ones are, anyway). For the Bible Tells Me So tackles a tough, timely topic: the antagonism between Christian fundamentalists and practicing homosexuals. This complex… READ MORE >


Books

A mad, wonderful adventure

A mad, wonderful adventure In her first book, Parched, Heather King documents twenty years of worshipping alcohol to the point, as she says, she was “willing to sacrifice everything: career, family, money, health, reputation, my life, and what is far worse than any of those, my soul, for alcohol.” Her second book Redeemed – A Spiritual Misfit Stumbles toward God,… READ MORE >


Movies

The Ugly Truth

The Ugly Truth When Caden Cotard wakes up, the first thing he does is look in a mirror. He sees a pudgy, middle-aged, balding, sad-sack of a human being. The rest of the movie will be like that: a merciless self-examination. Neil Gaiman, sci-fi and fantasy author, described most current literary fiction as “miserable people having small epiphanies of misery.”… READ MORE >

(2) COMMENTS  |  TOPICS:    art | death | theater | truth

Movies

Blood Lust

Blood Lust Twilight begs the question, why do girls always go for vampires? Is it the Byronic good looks? Or perhaps because they’re given to lines like, “You don’t know how long I’ve waited for you,” and “You’re my own personal brand of heroin.” Bella, a junior in high school recently relocated from Arizona… READ MORE >


Music

Mercy Knows My Name

Mercy Knows My Name There’s a pseudo-myth in rock music that drug-abusing artists lose their edge when they clean up their act. Their music, once forged in the crucible of angst and addiction, is softened and sanitized by sobriety. It’s a popular theory, especially among would-be rock stars without a label contract but with a dealer contact. To paraphrase… READ MORE >

(2) COMMENTS  |  TOPICS:    drugs | innocence | mercy | regeneration

Movies

Mission Impossible

Mission Impossible Norman Mailer’s The Castle in the Forest was a novel about Hitler narrated by a demon, who writes: “Most well-educated people are ready to bridle at the notion of such an entity as the Devil…There need be no surprise, then, that the world has an impoverished understanding of Adolf Hitler’s personality.” I was… READ MORE >


Movies

Guy Movie

Guy Movie Who or what is a RocknRolla? Someone born to be in a Guy Ritchie flick, that’s who. An amoral member of the criminal class doing bad things in stylish threads and an expensive pair of shades, spouting tough-lout talk like a Cockney at a Tarantino casting call. Ritchie’s first and best movies were Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels… READ MORE >

(1) COMMENT  |  TOPICS:    amoral | drugs | guns | madonna

Books

A Hipster’s Homily

A Hipster’s Homily Chuck Klosterman acquits himself well with his first novel, Downtown Owl. He’s better known as a wiseass essayist on movies, video games, heavy-metal music and pop culture miscellany for publications like Esquire, Spin, and The Guardian. An ominous news clipping prefaces Downtown Owl, reporting on a vicious blizzard that claimed the… READ MORE >

(1) COMMENT  |  TOPICS:    essays | robert altman

Movies

Conservulous

Conservulous A movie mocking Hollywood liberals is overdue, but a movie mocking Michael Moore is outdated. David Zucker, director of zany comedies like Airplane and Naked Gun, sets his satirical sights on a ripe target: the self-satisfaction of bleeding-heart Hollywood liberals (the kind who decry world poverty while collecting multi-million dollar paychecks).… READ MORE >


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