Arts & Life

Movie Reviews
5:02 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

'24 Exposures': A Would-Be Erotic Thriller, Without Focus

Billy (Adam Wingard) is a photographer obsessed with making images of women who've been brutalized — and with the models, like Callie (Sophia Takal), who portray them in his shoots.
24 Frames, LCC/IFC Midnight

Originally published on Fri January 24, 2014 2:47 pm

There are five named female characters in Joe Swanberg's 24 Exposures, and all of them spend significant portions of the movie ... well, exposed.

Actually, most of the unnamed female characters wind up in various states of undress as well, a fact that's part of a point Swanberg seems to be trying to make about objectification of women in art. In 24 Exposures, though, he straddles the line between criticizing that objectification and engaging in it himself.

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The Salt
4:45 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Potential Carcinogen In Colas Has FDA Reviewing Data

4-MEI, a chemical created during the manufacturing of caramel color used to dye sodas brown, is under new scrutiny.

A new study from Consumer Reports finds varying levels of a chemical compound classified as a possible human carcinogen in many popular brands of soda.

The findings have prompted the Food and Drug Administration to take a new look at the compound, 4-methylimidazole — or 4-MEI for short. It is found in the caramel color that soda makers use to dye the drinks brown.

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Found Recipes
3:46 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

From Down Under, A Paprikash To Warm You All Over

This paprikash recipe may be well-traveled — from Hungary to Australia — but its belly-warming comforts haven't changed a bit.
Courtesy of HarperCollins

Originally published on Fri January 24, 2014 5:32 pm

For many people, paprikash means winter. After all, it's a dish fit for cold, gray days: A belly-warming mix of meat and spices, it's the perfect cure for the doldrums of late January.

For Merelyn Chalmers, though, the classic Hungarian casserole recalls someone far dearer: her mother, Yolanda. A survivor of Auschwitz, Yolanda had rebuilt her life in Perth, Australia, after the war. "My mum was Hungarian," Chalmers explains. "We ate paprikash probably five nights a week. This was something that she just threw together when I wasn't feeling well."

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The Two-Way
1:09 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Rather Than Joking About Justin Bieber, Watch This Video

This police booking mug made available by the Miami Dade County Corrections Department shows pop star Justin Bieber on Thursday (Jan. 23, 2014).

Originally published on Thu January 23, 2014 2:58 pm

We are well aware that news outlets, websites and social media seem to be obsessed with the news that pop star Justin Bieber was arrested in Miami Beach early Thursday morning.

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Author Interviews
12:28 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Patchett: In Bad Relationships, 'There Comes A Day When You Gotta Go'

Ann Patchett is an award-winning novelist and memoirist. Her other books include Truth & Beauty, The Magician's Assistant and Run.
Heidi Ross Courtesy of Harper

Originally published on Thu January 23, 2014 4:58 pm

The title essay of Ann Patchett's latest book, This Is The Story Of A Happy Marriage, isn't exactly what it sounds like. It's actually the story of an unhappy marriage that ends quickly in divorce and results in a strongly defended refusal to marry that lasts many years. But eventually, it does lead to the happy marriage.

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The Salt
10:55 am
Thu January 23, 2014

An Innovative Plan To Reel In Sport Fishermen To Feed The Hungry

Students prepare fish cakes that will be part of a free dinner offered at Parkside Neighborhood Center in Portland, Maine.
Courtesy of Samantha Laster

Originally published on Thu January 23, 2014 2:41 pm

Portland, Maine, native Hollis McLaughlin's recollection of his mother's fish cookery produces a wistful expression as he takes a bite of the fish cakes given to him as part of the regular Wednesday night meal he is served free of charge at the Parkside Neighborhood Center.

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Monkey See
9:22 am
Thu January 23, 2014

Thanks For The Fan Service, But What About The Story?

Benedict Cumberbatch in "The Empty Hearse."
Robert Viglasky PBS

[Caution: This piece contains information about the season premieres of Sherlock and Community, along with a little bit about a very unfortunate side trip on Lost.]

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The Two-Way
7:12 am
Thu January 23, 2014

Book News: Maker Of 3-D Printed Guns Has A Book Deal

An all-plastic gun fires a bullet in this screenshot from a video made by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Originally published on Thu January 23, 2014 11:29 am

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

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Book Reviews
7:02 am
Thu January 23, 2014

All The Varieties Of Love And Madness, On Display In 'Carthage'

Ecco Books/Harper Collins

Originally published on Tue February 18, 2014 7:58 pm

On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the publication of her first novel, Joyce Carol Oates has outdone herself. This year she will have brought out three books of fiction — a new volume of novellas this past autumn, a new book of stories coming out this spring, and just now a new novel, a feat that testifies to the prodigious nature of her imagination and the unstoppable force of her writing powers.

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Movie Interviews
6:22 pm
Wed January 22, 2014

'Boyhood' And 'Happy Valley' Are Sundance Standouts So Far

Originally published on Thu January 23, 2014 10:02 am

The Sundance Film Festival is underway — actors, directors, studio executives and autograph hounds have converged on Park City, Utah, where dozens of independent movies and documentaries are being showcased during the 10-day event. Los Angeles Times arts and entertainment writer Steven Zeitchik, who has been binge watching films at the festival, takes a short intermission to tell NPR's Melissa Block about some of his picks.

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