Our Narcissistic Age Could Use Some ‘Casablanca’ Values

Casablanca never could have been made today. The classic movie, which turned seventy-five this year, features themes that would never fly in today’s world: that personal happiness is not the most important goal; that feelings ought to be ignored at times; and that romantic love isn’t always worth pursuing. Talk about retro values. In case … Continued

Entertainment

The Importance of Winston Churchill and ‘Darkest Hour’

Without a doubt, the best film that I saw in 2017 is Darkest Hour. Trailer: Directed by Joe Wright (Atonement), and starring the incomparable Gary Oldman as Winston Churchill, this is historically inspired feature filmmaking at its very finest, as the summary of the plot suggests: During the early days of World War II, with … Continued

Entertainment

Is ‘Wonder’ a Realistic Portrayal of Middle School?

“Is Wonder realistic?” I asked my son when we returned from seeing the movie last night. The two fourth grade boys and the two fifth grade girls who accompanied me had all read and loved the book on which the movie was based, but I wondered about what seemed like an extraordinarily happy ending. In … Continued

Entertainment

‘Lady Bird’ and the Power of Place

Lady Bird, Greta Gerwig’s coming-of-age film set in Sacramento, California, is dazzling audiences as much as it’s dazzled critics. Despite its limited release four weeks ago in arty theaters, it’s still among the top ten films for domestic box office, grossing more than $17 million to date. And for good reason: It’s a lovely movie. … Continued

Entertainment




What ‘Columbus’ Teaches Us About the Virtues of Small-Town Life

Columbus, the first feature film from video essayist Kogonada (the editor of popular supercuts of Wes Anderson and Stanley Kubrick movies), takes its name from a small city in Indiana known, if at all, for its unusually rich history of modernist architecture. Harry Weese, Eero Saarinen, and I.M. Pei—who designed the Washington, D.C. metro, the … Continued

Entertainment

“Birth of a Nation” Turns Nat Turner into Malcolm X

In August 1831, a black man named Nat Turner led an organized nighttime slave revolt in Southampton County, VA, that culminated in the murder of more than fifty white men, women and children and the retaliatory deaths of more than 100 black men, women and children. In August of 1999, a black Penn State University … Continued

Entertainment, Movies

Post of the Week

  This week’s Post of the Week honors go to Mark Judge’s excellent piece on Star Trek: Into Darkness. Check it out!

Post of the Week