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Showing posts from February, 2013

Movie Review: Boogie Woogie

Despite it's awful title (referencing a painting that has hardly anything to do with the main plot of the film) this is a pretty damn entertaining movie. Why? Well, frankly...because there's lots of good-looking people having sex in it.

And, seriously, when it comes to the female cast, this film is stacked: Gilian Anderson, Amanda Seyfried, Heather Graham, Joanna Lumley from Ab Fab, even an appearance by Charlotte Rampling. As for the dudes, there's a bunch you'll recognize by face if not by name: the creepy murdering dude from the U.S. version of Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, for one.

It's set in the Contemporary Art scene in London, present day. No, to answer your question, it's not a porno...though there is a fair bit of skin in the film...it's mostly just that it's extremely laden with sexual tension and the suggestion of sex (the camera fades out as two people begin to disrobe, etc.).

I mean, I didn't know you could cram so much cinematic lust …

New Yorker Fiction Reviews: Paul Theroux's "The Furies"

Each week I review the short fiction from the latest issue of The New Yorker. However, since I get my issue anywhere from Wednesday to Saturday, sometimes it takes me a while...

"The Furies," by Paul Theroux

4 Stars (out of 5)

This week I review the short story, "The Furies" by Paul Theroux. Theroux has always been kind of a favorite writer of mine. Known mostly for stories set in exotic locations, his stories are often laden with incipient or fully developed danger, prurient lust and the darker side of human love and sexuality. He wrote the book that became the somewhat-forgettable Harrison Ford film, Mosquito Coast, which still stands as probably his most famously adapted work. Anyway...

Synopsis: "The Furies" is set in Massachusetts and centers around a middle-aged (nearly senior-age) dentist who, in the midst of his second marriage to a much younger woman, is haunted by a series of encounters with the women whom he slept with, or tried to sleep with, …

From the "Okay I was wrong" Department

As you can see from the post below...I was wrong about the award for Best Picture. It went to Argo. Whatever. Not the first time I've been wrong and not the last. I guess actually SEEING the movies would've helped. And also, in the past few days/week Argo did start coming to the front as a contender. But I refused to listen to that new chatter and just went with my instincts. Which, as George Costanza can tell you, isn't always the way to go.

But, whatever...

Argo or Lincoln: A matter of national importance

It comes down to this question: which do we care more about these days? The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, or Domestic Policy?

Okay, maybe saying "which do we care more about" is the wrong way to put it. But no one can deny that the wars aren't getting the same amount of media play as they were in the mid-2000s, pre-crisis days. Ever since then, as the wars have "wound down" we've been focused inward, toward Domestic Policy issues. Read: Fixing our broken country.

Argo is a fact-based story about a scheme to get prisoners out of Iran using the pretense of the filming of a fake-movie. Great story, but....on the other hand you have a story about one of the greatest America Icons, akin to an American "god" really, and his struggle to heal a broken and divided country. It's a message that should resonate pretty strongly in our age of deeply divided politics and Haves-vs.-Have-Nots, 1% vs. 99% vs. 47% rhetoric. Now is the time when we need a figure …

You Know You're Getting Old When...

...your idea of a good Saturday evening/night includes:

a.) Catching up on work E-mails
b.) Doing the dishes
c.) Cooking up a steak & drinking few beers
d.) Netflixing some Sherlock
e.) Maybe staying awake to watch SNL

Dude, WTF is happening to me? I feel like I should run out to the bar, load some AC/DC on the jukebox and immediately bang down half-dozen tequila shots in a vain attempt to turn back the clock on my youth, or at least stall Father Time for one more weekend. But, as we all know (those of us who are over 30, at least) that is fundamentally a losing battle and one that will actually, in the long run, set you back even further.

Let us consider, instead, the noble Grizzly Bear, who hibernates all winter. How exactly that applies here, I don't know. But I do know this: when you get older, you get smarter. When there's nothing specific to do, you don't feel the need to rush out and find something to do, or make something to do. Instead, you take the opportuni…

Weather Critique - Indianapolis, Feb. 22

0 Stars
Indianapolis, IN

Hard to find anything enjoyable about this failed attempt at a Friday. This is pneumonia weather. This is "I don't even want to go outside to get the mail" weather. This is whiskey at 3:00 p.m. weather. This is "call your shrink and see if she can meet you tomorrow instead of next week" weather. Not only is it February, the most notoriously wearying and depressing Winter month in the Northeast-Midwest, but it's late-Febraury to boot: Valentie's is over, Spring Break won't be here for weeks, and we're all going out of our skulls. So do we REALLY need an ice-storm followed by a day full of depressing ice-rain?? I don't think so. The ice storm was one thing, but rain is really just a slap in the face. Way to go, February.

Shame Yourself Into Good Health: A lazy man learns to love getting up at 6:30 a.m.

Okay, so I'm not lazy, per se. I'm just not a morning person. If I had my way I'd go to bed at 4:00 a.m. and wake up at noon every day. This is due to some weird quirk in my body chemistry which causes my overly-neurotic brain to stay fired-up until (and actually work better) well after midnight. Then, as a result, I'm unable to budge the next morning (any morning) when the alarm goes off. I hit the snooze an average of nine times per day. Average.

And yet...somehow for the past two weeks I've started learning how to wake up before dawn to go the gym. How is this possible? I'll give you the answer in one word: shame.

U.S. society is not geared for late sleepers. There's this whole "workday" business that starts at 9 and ends sometime after 5, with nothing so civilized as a seista built into it. Furthermore, we late-sleepers take a lot of flack from the rest of the seemingly-normal, early-rising world: "Oh, you just got up??" ... "Y…

SOTU: My Response

Okay, you heard from Obama, you heard from the GOP. Now it's time to hear from the Man-on-the-Street, namely me.

Look, god knows I love me some Obama. The man can make an intelligent, earnest, and well-presented speech, and his comprehensive vision for the U.S.A. leaves me ready to stand up and salute. But the fact is, the two sides of the aisle are still too divided and no real, meaningful change is going to happen in any of the domestic policy areas he highlighted last night: Budget, Education, or Energy.

His ideas for improving the educational system from Pre-School through University? Brilliant. Love them. But guess what? They're going to cost $$ and nobody wants to pay. Furthermore, most (many?) states are having severe financial problems. Just a few years ago Pennsylvania slashed it's education budget in HALF, and they're not the only ones to make such drastic cuts. But....nobody wants to pay and even if they did, we're not making enough money right now.

Ener…