Arts & Life

The Two-Way
9:51 am
Fri December 12, 2014

Book News: J.K. Rowling's Crime Novels To Step Onto The Small Screen

The second in the series, The Silkworm will soon spin its thread in pixels on TV.
Justin Tallis AFP/Getty Images

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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Monkey See
9:41 am
Fri December 12, 2014

The Great 'Parks And Rec' Clip War Of 2014

My friend Alan Sepinwall and I have both written in the past about our affection for Parks And Recreation, the NBC comedy that is not only about to end, but is about to end in a burst of weekly back-to-back episodes that will have it over by the end of February.

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StoryCorps
8:59 am
Fri December 12, 2014

Memories Of An Ironworker On The Verrazano-Narrows Bridge

An ironworker on the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge in the early 1960s.
©Bruce Davidson/Magnum Photos

Originally published on Fri December 12, 2014 12:46 pm

It's been 50 years since New York City's Verrazano-Narrows Bridge opened. It was then — and still is — the longest suspension bridge in the country.

In 1964, author Gay Talese published a book about the construction called The Bridge. Here's an excerpt:

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Monkey See
8:44 am
Fri December 12, 2014

Pop Culture Happy Hour: Live From Sixth And I

NPR

On Tuesday night, December 9, we gathered at the historic Sixth & I synagogue in Washington for our biggest live show yet. Along with our great friend Barrie Hardymon, Stephen, Glen and I talked about some of our takeaways from the year, from podcasts to great books to the music that wouldn't die.

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Theater
6:39 pm
Thu December 11, 2014

Glenn Close Ends 20-Year Broadway Hiatus With 'A Delicate Balance'

Glenn Close stars as Agnes in Edward Albee's play A Delicate Balance.
Brigitte Lacombe Philip Rinaldi Publicity

In 1995, Glenn Close won her third Tony Award for her role the Broadway musical Sunset Boulevard. Now, after 20-year hiatus, Close is back on Broadway. She's starring alongside John Lithgow in A Delicate Balance, Edward Albee's 1966 Pulitzer Prize-winning play. The story follows Agnes (Close), a suburban matron striving to keep the peace in a household she her husband (Lithgow) share with her sister, who's an alcoholic; their daughter, who's a serial divorcee; and their best friends who have fled their own home in an inexplicable terror.

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Movie Reviews
5:03 pm
Thu December 11, 2014

In A Serious Season, The Loose Charms Of 'Little Feet'

Nico Rockwell and Lana Rockwell star in Little Feet.
Factory Twenty Five

On Christmas, a slew of Oscar hopefuls will hit theaters, taking on the kind of important topics you might expect from such prestige pictures: corruption in contemporary Russia, the psychological aftereffects of war, the struggles of the civil rights movement. In their company, the eccentricities of Alexandre Rockwell's Little Feet, which is getting a digital release on Vimeo and Fandor as well as a theatrical run in New York, stand out even more than normal.

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Movie Reviews
5:03 pm
Thu December 11, 2014

The 1970s, Ugly And Adrift In 'Inherent Vice'

Joaquin Phoenix stars as Larry "Doc" Sportello — a private investigator with a pot smoking habit — in Inherent Vice, Paul Thomas Anderson's film adaptation of the novel by Thomas Pynchon.
Wilson Webb Warner Brothers Pictures

Paul Thomas Anderson probably wouldn't take kindly to being called a period filmmaker. And it's true that one of our finest pulse-takers of the American predicament is so much more than that. Anderson's movies track warped obsessives who come to define the particular times and places from which they get the tarnished American Dreams they pursue.

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Author Interviews
2:21 pm
Thu December 11, 2014

Richard Pryor, A Comedy Pioneer Who Was 'Always Whittling On Dynamite'

Comedian Richard Pryor, pictured in 1977, grew up in a brothel, surrounded by violence. "He said once that it's easier for him to talk about his life in front of 2,000 people than it is to do it one on one," says Scott Saul, whose new book is Becoming Richard Pryor.
AP

Originally published on Thu December 11, 2014 3:14 pm

Comedian Richard Pryor's legacy still reverberates nearly 10 years after his death. Pryor took the most difficult troubling aspects of his life and turned it into comedy. He talked about being black in ways that had never been done before in mainstream entertainment. And he was fearless and hilarious talking about race relations.

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The Record
2:19 pm
Thu December 11, 2014

The Political Folk Song Of The Year

Alynda Lee Segarra of Hurray for the Riff Raff.
Joshua Shoemaker Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri December 12, 2014 10:52 am

When Alynda Lee Segarra of Hurray for the Riff Raff wrote the song "The Body Electric," she knew it would make its way into the world, and hoped its effects would be palpable. Horrified by the rapes that have made tragic news from India to America's college campuses, the singer-songwriter noticed that her own people — music makers and music lovers — would regularly sing along with choruses about killing women, comfortably accepting gender-based violence as part of the ballad tradition.

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The Two-Way
10:15 am
Thu December 11, 2014

Book News: Australian Prime Minister's 'Nasty' Move Sparks Lit-Prize Furor

Prime Minister Tony Abbott rankled the judges of the Prime Minister's Literary Award with a last-minute announcement. Judge Les Murray later called Abbott's pick a "stupid and pretentious book."
Stefan Postles Getty Images

Originally published on Thu December 11, 2014 11:11 am

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

On Monday, Australia's top literary prize picked a pair of winners in its fiction category. Steven Carroll and Richard Flanagan, who was also this year's Booker Prize winner, split the Prime Minister's Literary Award and its winnings. The decision, while unusual, didn't raise many eyebrows at the time — but the aftermath has.

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