July 3, 2011 |
On the very first page of "The Kid," we learn Precious has died, leaving behind an orphan 9-year-old son, Abdul. Just like that, Sapphire, whose novel "Push" was adapted into one of 2009's most acclaimed films, "Precious," moves aside her troubled and inspiring creation so that this can be Abdul's story. Told from his point of view, it is a harrowing, sometimes bewildering tale. He didn't fully grasp the severity of his mother's AIDS; he doesn't understand that he no longer has a home.
December 26, 2010 |
Janus, the Roman god for whom the first month of the Gregorian calendar is named, has two heads ? one looking forward to the future and another looking back to the past. That might make just him the most appropriate mascot for 2011's emerging trends ? a simultaneous embrace of technology, such as 4-D and social networks, and a fascination with quainter notions, such as good customer service, ballet and royalty. What follows are some of the main trends we expect to see in the worlds of pop culture and style in the coming year.
April 5, 2010
BOOKS Don Lattin The author of "The Harvard Psychedelic Club" presents and signs his lively history of how Timothy Leary, Ram Dass, Huston Smith and Andrew Weil crossed paths in the early '60s at a Harvard-sponsored psychedelic-drug research project. Lattin tracks the resultant launching of a new American culture centered on yoga classes, organic produce and alternative medicine. Book Soup, 8818 Sunset Blvd. 7 p.m. Free. (310) 659-3110. www.booksoup.com. Sapphire The writer had a mainstream breakout with the film "Precious," based on her novel "Push."
April 4, 2010
MADAGASCAR Presentation Bruce Carter will explore the people, animals, plants and recently discovered sapphire deposits in Madagascar. When, where: 7:30 p.m. Monday at Distant Lands, 56 S. Raymond Ave., Pasadena. Admission, info: Free. RSVP to (626) 449-3220 MOUNTAINEERING Slide show Mountain guide Kurt Wedberg will present images from a Mt. Everest expedition in 2008. When, where: 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Griffith Park Visitor Center auditorium, 4730 Crystal Springs Drive, L.A. Admission, info: Free.
March 12, 2010 |
Up in the Air Paramount, $29.98; Blu-ray, $39.99 George Clooney gives one of his best performances in Jason Reitman's adaptation of Walter Kirn's novel "Up in the Air," playing a corporate hatchet man who tries to think more about his travel perks than the people he's being paid to fire. Vera Farmiga is equally excellent as the hero's frequent bedmate, while Anna Kendrick is a revelation as a protégée who resists his worldview while acknowledging its attractions. Reitman telegraphs too much of what he wants the audience to understand about Clooney's character and the life he leads, but "Up in the Air" is amusing and moving enough to overcome any patness.
March 8, 2010
Adapted screenplay "Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire" Geoffrey Fletcher Among the biggest surprises of the night, Geoffrey Fletcher won for best adapted screenplay for "Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire." The award makes him the first African American to win a screenwriting Oscar. The heavy favorite in the category had been Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner's script for "Up in the Air." Taking the stage, the seemingly awe struck Fletcher began, "I don't know what to say. This is for everybody who works on a dream every day."