In Margaret Thatcher’s 1984, there was no group more despised than miners, on strike and avowed socialists. Gays and lesbians didn’t yet sink to their level of opprobrium, but Section 28 was around the corner, and besides, the age of consent for homosexuals was twenty-one (and sixteen for everyone else). Pride, directed by Matthew Warchus,Continue reading “‘Pride’”

Shopping is a pleasure

When one of the best chains in the country and my local supermarket does the following, it must know something Pam Bondi won’t acknowledge: Publix will acknowledge and insure coverage for same sex couples, even those married in other states. Well. The news gets better too: “This is huge news,” said Nadine Smith, executive directorContinue reading “Shopping is a pleasure”

A simple plea

What a surprise: The U.S. House Intelligence Committee has denied a Florida congressman’s request for access to 28 classified pages from the 2002 report of Congress’ Joint Inquiry into the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Rep. Alan Grayson, D-Orlando, told BrowardBulldog.org he made his request at the suggestion of House colleagues who have read them as theyContinue reading “A simple plea”

‘Always On My Mind’ — ‘a promise of pop music’

Tom Ewing’s been thinking and writing about “Always on My Mind” for years; for a year-end entry he goes section by section through one of Freaky Trigger’s top 100 songs, and certainly when I play “Always On My Mind” it sounds like the greatest recorded song in history. Here Tom concerns itself with the versionContinue reading “‘Always On My Mind’ — ‘a promise of pop music’”

‘Those were also, always, your sexy, sexual years’

California Split, part of Robert Altman’s killer streak of movies between 1970 and 1975, deserves rediscovery. Kim Morgan’s recent interview with stars George Segal, Elliott Gould, and screenwriter Joseph Walsh captures some of the rambunctious, unpredictable laughs: KM: It seems like Altman had a nice balance where he would allow these great scripts and linesContinue reading “‘Those were also, always, your sexy, sexual years’”

New polling on Cuba

A set of new polls show the following: A raft of new surveys, taken after President Barack Obama announced plans Wednesday to normalize relations with Cuba, shows far more Americans want the sanctions lifted and relations improved compared to those who favor current U.S. policy — namely Republicans and many Cuban-Americans. But there’s one aspectContinue reading “New polling on Cuba”

The half life of hysteria

David Weigel makes sense: The incident-free Interview screenings should be remembered alongside two other overhyped 2014 fears: the Ebola panic and the reaction to ISIS. The latter stories were handled even worse, because they happened during an election, and because some candidates created a feedback loop of childish speculation that Ebola could spread by sneezes,Continue reading “The half life of hysteria”

By a nose: Foxcatcher

“So slow,” moaned the woman three aisles up as Foxcatcher’s closing credits rolled. Was she familiar with Bennett Miller’s work? He directs as if he were an instructor reading the first drafts of essays for freshman comp. Based on the batshit events leading up to “world’s richest man” John E. du Pont’s murder of DaveContinue reading “By a nose: Foxcatcher”

‘It just wasn’t part of our culture growing up’

Alan Gomez on the complex relations between the Catholic Church and the Castro regime. The gist: its members harassed and excluded from ruling circles for years,the Church regained a certain measure of its former authority in 1998. I don’t know what part it played or plays in helping dissidents: Yancey Ruiz, 33, said he hasContinue reading “‘It just wasn’t part of our culture growing up’”

‘Everyone makes fun of our president. It’s nothing more than satire’

Good attitude: Hundreds flocked to the Swap Shop Drive-In Movie Theatre near Fort Lauderdale on Christmas night to check out The Interview, the controversial Seth Rogen-James Franco film many chains refused to exhibit after hackers threatened to bomb theaters showing it. “When we saw the trailer we knew something was going to happen,” said GregoryContinue reading “‘Everyone makes fun of our president. It’s nothing more than satire’”

‘I am sickened by the “second campaign” now being waged’

A reporter friend told me in 2006 that Jeb Bush responded to email, no matter how late (one response came after three in the morning). Reporters assigned to work yesterday filed stories about what Bush wrote in them. No flashes of insight here: not a single beguiling turn of phrase or policy revelation. Let’s getContinue reading “‘I am sickened by the “second campaign” now being waged’”