April 4, 2004 |
This city is steeped in remembrances of the war, but the capital's changing face and contemporary vibe have caught Hollywood's attention, making it Europe's latest filmmaking hot spot. "It's the new place," says "The Bourne Supremacy" producer Frank Marshall, who just wrapped a three-month shoot here. "It's replaced Prague."
January 16, 2011 |
January Jones is, perhaps for the first time in her career, contemplating sensible shoes. The actress, best known as "Mad Men's" coolly chic Betty Draper, needed to keep her feet firmly planted for "Unknown," a psychological thriller opening Feb. 18 that sees her racing across Berlin in a series of car chases, explosions and fistfights. "It was my first venture in the action genre," says Jones. "We made sure my shoes were comfortable, because I'm running around a lot. They gave me a padded high heel with a grip on the bottom so I wasn't slipping, sliding and hurting myself, and all these beautiful high boots.
April 3, 2009 |
Most people who travel by plane can remember the first time they broke through the clouds and gazed down on that undulant white blanket, so cleanly defined in the unfiltered sunlight. This is also the vantage from which almost all contemporary fiction is written: high above action that unfolds lucidly and deliberately for the reader. But as its title suggests, Chloe Aridjis' debut novel, "Book of Clouds," holds us in the mist, just below the point at which we can orient ourselves.
June 1, 2008 |
Boars are foraging through carefully tended gardens here and rooting up city parks in search of food. Angry sows have on occasion attacked people who strayed too close to their piglets. Some residents want the animals curtailed, even if it means a cull. "There are too many boars around here because Berlin's hunters don't shoot enough of the animals," said Uwe Neumann, a resident of the Eichkamp Siedlung, a small cluster of homes near Berlin's massive Grunewald park. It's common to stroll the grounds of the Im Dol, a small park in a residential area of southwest Berlin, or the nearby Schlachtensee, and see boars rummaging in the bushes and shrubbery.
March 21, 2011 |
In Jonathan Rabb's "The Second Son," a Berlin police detective, Nikolai Hoffner, is cashiered from his post ? circa 1936 ? by the Nazis because he is half-Jewish. Undaunted, he hies off to Spain in search of a son missing in the early days of that country's civil war. The lad is ostensibly a newsreel photographer but is actually a spy in search of guns the Germans are running into Iberia. The author of the well-received novels "Shadow and Light" and "Rosa," Rabb gives readers a premise that is as good as any, and Nikolai is soon traveling up and down the Spanish peninsula, accompanied by Mila, a beauteous doctor, who conveniently appears in the novel's early pages.
March 20, 2010 |
Whether it's last year's "Black Water Rising," Attica Locke's legal thriller set in 1980s Houston, or Dan Fesperman's Vlado Petric mysteries, a little history with my mystery makes the pages fly. Popular of late have been mysteries set between World Wars I and II -- Jacqueline Winspear's Maisie Dobbs series and Charles Todd's Ian Rutledge mysteries have been particularly satisfying in their portraits of England in those years and the cost that war exacts...
April 1, 2011 |
As NATO takes full command of the jet fighters cruising over Libya, one member of the Western alliance continues to be conspicuous by its absence: Germany. Europe's most populous country and biggest economy has chosen to sit out the operation, skeptical of the aims and efficacy of armed intervention. While the U.S., Britain and France enforce the no-fly zone and insist that Libyan strongman Moammar Kadafi step aside, Germany has gone its own way in pressing for a negotiated end to the conflict and disavowing the military campaign.
December 25, 2011 |
If Berlin's Alexa shopping center is any indication, Germany is having a very good crisis. While the rest of Europe enacts crippling austerity measures to soothe nervous creditors and bring down dangerously high interest rates, shoppers continue to pour out of Alexa's doors with bags full of presents to sip mulled wine in the cheery Christmas market outside. Fenja Kothe, a social worker juggling three shopping bags, said she and her countrymen felt no need to cut back on their purchases this holiday season.