Monthly Archives: January 2012

Terms of mistreatment: 50/50

Directed by Jonathan Levine from a script based on true life by Will Reiser, 50/50 is the sort of movie in which scenes gleam like newly minted clichés. A morning scene between Adam (Joseph Gordon-Levitt, henceforth known as JGL) and … Continue reading

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Will it get better?

RAVI: Did you tell them we did it on purpose? WEI: Yeah . . well that we didn’t know what we were gonna see Where is tyler . . RAVI: Because I said we were just messing around with the … Continue reading

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Happy Sunday

One day I’ll decide whether I prefer I Just Can’t Stop It or Special Beat Service.

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Cynthia Nixon: more right than bright

Frank Bruni: Among adults, the right to love whom you’re moved to love — and to express it through sex and maybe, yes, marriage — is surely as vital to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as a Glock. … Continue reading

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Method to his madness: A Dangerous Method

The immediate pleasure offered by A Dangerous Method is literate dialogue. Adapting his own play, Christopher Hampton makes Carl Jung (Michael Fassbender) not a pillar so much as a stalk of rectitude and Sigmund Freud (Viggo Mortensen) a droll ironist … Continue reading

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Singles 1/27

In which Faith Hill and Jason Mraz outscore The Shins and Nicki Minaj’s latest collaboration. Songs graded on a ten-point scale. Click on links for reviews. Faith Hill – Come Home (6) Nicki Minaj – Stupid Hoe (6) Jason Mraz … Continue reading

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On growing old

Each season, the writer’s balance gets worse, and sometimes he falls. He no longer cooks for himself but microwaves widower food, mostly Stouffer’s. If he flies to do a poetry reading, his dear companion Linda, who lives an hour away, must wheelchair him through airport and security. New poems no longer come to him. Generation after generation, his family’s old people sat at this window to watch the year. There are beds in this house where babies were born, where the same babies died eighty years later. After a life of loving the old, by natural law the writer turned old himself. Decades followed each other and then came his cancers, Jane’s death, and over the years he travelled to another universe. However alert we are, antiquity remains an unknown, unanticipated galaxy. It is alien, and old people are a separate form of life. They can be pleasant, they can be annoying, but most important they are permanently other. When we turn eighty, we understand that we are extraterrestrial.

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Romney: a virtual parody of an inauthentic politician

A week late but worth linking: what Mitt Romney learned from his dad George, a vigorous philanthropist who marched with Martin Luther King’s followers in Selma, Alabama. Rick Perlstein: When people call his son the “Rombot,” think about that: Mitt … Continue reading

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A note on pandering

Embittered by fifty-two years (!) of false promises, my parents have sworn off voting for candidates who promise Fidel’s head on a platter delivered by a dancing girl who can sing Celia Cruz. Their vote for Republicans ticket is inspired … Continue reading

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Hope and deranged: The Ides of March

In which sandpapery-voiced political consultant Steve Meyers (Ryan Gosling) realizes that the Democratic governor and candidate for president (George Clooney) is a louse, and, as a bonus, realizes that he’s a louse too. That’s all that’s at stake in what … Continue reading

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Or: how the other half lives

Fascinating: A few conservative concessions to liberalism’s strengths were made without qualification; others were begrudging. Nonetheless, in the conservative assessment, common themes emerge: Liberals recognize the real problems facing the poor, the hardships resulting from economic globalization and the socially … Continue reading

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Fandom stepping out: Disco Inferno

A close to definitive oral history of Disco Inferno, a band about which I knew little until last year. I’ll need this: even after listening with growing pleasure to the reissue of The Five EP‘s last fall my reservations still stand. … Continue reading

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