October 20, 2012 |
The meaning of identity is a subject close to the heart of the directors of two new foreign-language dramas that explore the consequences of the loss of individuality - Sweden's "Simon and the Oaks," which just opened, and France's "The Other Son," which will be released in Los Angeles on Friday. Both movies deal with issues of religious and national identities, and both come directly out of the personal experiences of the two female filmmakers. The award-winning "Simon and the Oaks," based on the Swedish bestseller by Marianne Fredriksson that spans 1939-52, stars Bill Skarsgard (actor Stellan's younger son)
March 7, 2012 |
In a two-day span, the Lakers morphed from a playoff-contending team into one that can't beat a bottom-dweller. During that time, a number of things changed. Kobe Bryant went from dominant scorer to streaky shooter. Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum went from representing the Lakers' distinguishable strengths to their underutilized strengths. Metta World Peace went from a dominant defender and a reliable scorer to, well, his usual unpredictability. The Lakers' bench went from sustaining leads to blowing leads.
January 18, 2013 |
Searching for Zion The Quest for Home in the African Diaspora Emily Raboteau Atlantic Monthly Press: 320 pp., $25 In 1965, author and civil rights essayist James Baldwin appeared at the Cambridge Union Society to debate William F. Buckley on the question "Is the American Dream at the Expense of the American Negro?" In a blast of eloquence, Baldwin answered in the affirmative. And in so doing, took up a question he was to return to again and again in his work: How can a country that tries to destroy you be home?
September 25, 2012 |
Tinseltown tunefully outs itself in “Justin Love,” triumphantly opening the Celebration Theatre's 30th anniversary season. Though not without its still-gelling aspects, this witty, full-hearted musical fable about an idealistic Hollywood assistant and the A-Lister he un-closets is as endearing an item as any in the venue's history. For instance, the one adroit establishing number, “Hollywood Opening”: Michigan transplant Chris (amber-voiced Tyler Ledon) goes from arrival -- “It smells like oranges and hope” -- to West Hollywood pick-up by struggling Donovan (wry Terrance Spencer)
May 11, 2013 |
Two days after her 11th birthday, Sarah Polley lost her mother to cancer. The death came as a shock, even though her father and older siblings had watched Diane Polley battle the disease for months. As she grew up in Toronto under the care of her father, Michael, Polley's conception of her mother was fuzzily constructed from memories, photographs and family stories. Nevertheless, she followed her mother's footsteps into acting, taking to the Canadian stage as a child and at 18 catching the attention of U.S. audiences after her role in "The Sweet Hereafter.
January 10, 2004
It was appalling to read Simon Cole's absurd diatribe about fingerprinting ("Fingerprinting: a Black Mark," Commentary, Jan. 7). Fingerprinting has nothing whatsoever to do with race. It seems that academics, with little real-world knowledge, will morph any issue to play the race card. Fingerprints individuate people, without regard to any other physical descriptors whatsoever. The General Accounting Office, the National Institute for Science and Technology and the FBI are all on record that fingerprints are the most reliable biometric for determining the true identity of persons.