August 22, 2012 |
Enigmatic anecdote is the currency of Martin Crimp's "The City," having its U.S. premiere at Son of Semele Theater in a production directed by artistic director Matthew McCray. The characters don't so much engage in dialogue as indulge in a cryptic form of storytelling, in which puzzling incidents are set against a background of warfare, brutality and personal desolation. A foreboding air of menace invokes the work of Harold Pinter, though Crimp, a playwright better known in the States for his springy translations of French dramatic classics, is more abstract and diffuse.
August 16, 2012
A smash hit on its recent release in China, "Painted Skin: The Resurrection" offers an over-the-top mix of fantasy, adventure and romance that plays as a fussy, convoluted mess. In an ancient world in which spirit demons roam the earth, the spirit Xiaowei (Xun Zhou), searching for a chance to become more human, finds herself matching wits with Princess Jing (Wei Zhao), who is on the run from threats against her, as the two both seek love on their own terms for their own ends. The film, a sequel to 2008's "Painted Skin," is directed by Wuershan, who also made the recent "The Butcher, the Chef and the Swordsman.
August 10, 2012 |
If there is a popular conception of what an online series is, it probably involves nonexistent budgets, no-name actors and modest ambitions. But increasingly, online originals are getting bigger, deeper and more complex in their scope and storytelling. And Hollywood's A-list is starting to get in on the action. The new "H+ the Digital Series," from producer Bryan Singer andWarner Bros. Digital Distribution, is a daring example of this new approach. "H+," which premiered this week on YouTube, is set in a not-too-distant future when much of humanity has been implanted with a device that keeps brains tethered to the Internet 24/7.
August 1, 2012 |
No writer wants to be called “cozy,” right? Satirical, mordant, horrifying, bold, funny - anything but that word. Yet coziness is what Maeve Binchy delivered in 16 novels and numerous story collections before her death this week at the age of 72 . The author's death at a Dublin hospital was announced Monday in the Irish media. Fans like Nicole Cliffe, at The Hairpin , mourned the death of Binchy, calling her the creator of “funny, sweet, intermittently tragic and extremely enjoyable novels” that reached out to readers around the world and managed to sell more than 40 million copies.
July 19, 2012 |
With stories that include forbidden crushes on Freddy Krueger, scheduling your first casual hookup and hiding in a bathtub with 72 slices of American cheese, Thursday night's show at the Bang Comedy Theatre is not your mother's idea of a comedy performance. Now celebrating its ninth installment, the monthly storytelling series "Don't Tell My Mother" pulls from a variety of corners of the entertainment industry, including actors, artists, screenwriters and, for good measure, a lawyer and a drag queen to spin true 10-minute confessions they'd never want their moms to know.
July 19, 2012 |
The film "30 Beats," the debut as writer-director for long-time producer, financier and distributor Alexis Lloyd, is an uneven and unengaging riff on "La Ronde"-style handoff storytelling, following a series of New Yorkers through various sexual encounters during a sweltering summer heat wave. A young woman asks a man to assist her in losing her virginity, leading him to a psychic who has an encounter with a bike messenger, and on and on. Despite the presence of such actors as Lee Pace, Jennifer Tilly, Justin Kirk, Thomas Sadoski and Paz de la Huerta, there is no character insight allowed by the bumper-car storytelling.
July 8, 2012 |
2312 A Novel Kim Stanley Robinson Orbit: 576 pp., $25.99 As the author of the "Mars" trilogy, among other novels, Kim Stanley Robinson has established a superlative reputation for science fictional extrapolation. In his vibrant, often moving new novel, "2312," Robinson's extrapolation is hard-wired to a truly affecting personal love story. By the year of the book's title, humankind has (just barely) survived global warming, in part because of terra-forming technologies that have made possible the colonization of Mars, Mercury and Venus.
June 17, 2012 |
Turn your road trip into a laugh fest with this app. Name: Funny Road Trip, http://www.funnyroadtrip.com Available for: iPhone, iPod touch, iPad What it does: Four characters from different parts of the world - Señor Tortilla, McBronx, Sushi Sakura and Emil DaElecktra, the travel robot - ask questions and suggest tasks that can lead to your family telling stories, interacting with what they see along the...
June 14, 2012 |
"Lost"co-creator Damon Lindelof loved the first season finale of AMC's"The Killing. " But by calling the show's choice not to reveal Rosie Larsen's killer "a stroke of genius," he flies in the face of general opinion. "If the show had told us who the killer was, we'd have been talking about it for a week," Lindelof says. "The fact that we're still talking about it - you have to admire it on a sheer Barnum form of showmanship. " Lindelof empathizes with "Killing" creator Veena Sud because he's been there with a show that colors outside the lines, facing a much larger broadcast television audience.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 30, 2012 |
In 1962, Doc Watson and some of his musician neighbors set out from their home in the Blue Ridge Mountains on the journey of a lifetime, to perform at the Ash Grove folk club in Los Angeles. "I remember the first trip we did," Watson said in a 2008 interview. "We borrowed a little station wagon from the late Clarence Ashley's son and drove to California and back, and I remember thinking, 'Lord, what a big old country this is.' I was a mountaineer, just a country boy. I'd never been nowhere like that before.