A girl can get burned

The early 19th century novels of Jane Austen, including “Sense and Sensibility” and “Pride and Prejudice”, have never gone out of print. If movie studios, both domestic and foreign, have their way, film adaptations of her titles will also continue to be a part of our consciousness. Even if they’ve been made before. But do we really need two mini-series and one theatrical release version of “Sense and Sensibility”? Additionally, not only were there feature-length and mini-series versions of “Pride & Prejudice”, but also a zom-com remake. Austen’s “Emma” has suffered a similar fate, including a mini-series, a Hollywood edition […]

Big gulp

According to Wikipedia, pica is categorized as “a psychological disorder characterized by an appetite for substances that are largely non-nutritive, such as ice (pagophagia); hair (trichophagia); paper (xylophagia); drywall or paint; sharp objects (acuphagia); metal (metallophagia); stones (lithophagia) or soil (geophagia); glass (hyalophagia); feces (coprophagia); and chalk”. In “Swallow” (IFC Films), the feature length debut by gender-fluid writer/director Carlo Mirabella-Davis, Hunter (Haley Bennett, who has a Jennifer Lawrence quality) and Richie (the striking Austin Stowell) are young newlyweds, enjoying their incredible new home, purchased for them by Richie’s affluent parents Michael (David Rasche) and Katherine (Elizabeth Marvel). Richie, who works […]

What does Chicago sound like?

During the great COVID-19 shutdown of 2020 we have plenty of time to ponder all sorts of things. Such as what does Chicago sound like? In the early days, Chicago sounded like the blues and jazz. By the 1960s, Chicago’s rock scene included bands such as The Buckinghams, The Cryan’ Shames, Shadows of Knight and New Colony Six. Named for the city, Chicago went on to become one the biggest bands in the world during the `70s and beyond. Other `70s acts included Styx, The Ides of March, Cheap Trick and REO Speedwagon. The Chicago music scene lost ground to […]

Laughter and Life

Queer comedy keeps getting better and better, especially when it comes to our sisters. From groundbreaking lesbian comedy pioneers such as Kate Clinton, Elvira Kurt, Judy Gold, Karen Williams, Suzanne Westenhoefer, Marga Gomez, and Lea DeLaria to the living legends Wanda Sykes, Tig Notaro, Rosie O’Donnell, and Ellen DeGeneres to the current wave of funny females including Kate McKinnon, Fortune Feimster, Jessica Kirson, Hannah Gadsby, and the subject of this interview, Jen Kober. A natural-born storyteller, Kober has established herself in the realm even winning awards for her work on NPR’s “Snap Judgement.” This also holds true of her comedy […]

Tarantino-a-Go-Go

Here is a trigger warning  this review contains possible spoilers! Obsessive auteur Quentin Tarantino, who won a 2020 Golden Globe for his screenplay, takes his longstanding cinematic love affair with Hollywood to new and exhilarating heights in Once Upon A Time  In Hollywood (Sony / Columbia). Drawing on his own oeuvre as well as the vast entertainments from mid-20th century movies and television, the sprawling (nearly three hours!) epic is Tarantinos most ambitious patchwork quilt film; alternately comforting and gripping. Bordering on being washed-up, actor Rick Dalton (Leonardo Di Caprio) is at a career crossroads in early 1969. After his […]

National Poetry Month 2020 Reading List

April is National Poetry Month. In April 2020, readers are fortunate to have an exceptional selection of titles from which to choose. Read one or read them all, you wont be disappointed. Selected by Ocean Vuong as the winner of the Kathryn A. Morton Prize in Poetry, Your New Feeling is the Artifact of a Bygone Era (Sarabande Books, 2020) is the stunning debut poetry collection by Chad Bennett, an associate professor of English at the University of Texas at Austin. A 2020 Lannan Literary Selection, 13th Balloon (Copper Canyon Press, 2020) by Mark Bibbins is a moving and groundbreaking […]

Christmas in February

If you missed kooky / tearjerky rom-com Last Christmas (Universal) during its brief run in multiplexes in December, fear not. It’s arriving on digital disk just in time for watching or giving as a gift on Valentine’s Day on February 14th.. When Kate (Emilia Clarke) was a young girl she got solos in the church choir. While still chasing her dream of becoming a singer and actress, she works dressed as an elf in a Christmas shop run by a woman who goes by the name Santa (Michelle Yeoh). As if the costume and constant disparaging remarks from Santa aren’t […]

Forever Young

If you’ve been dancing in a club any time in the last 20 or so years, chances are very good that you’ve hit the crowded dancefloor to a remix by Grammy Award-winning lesbian DJ and producer Tracy Young. The Mid-Atlantic native and Miami resident has left her distinctive mark on songs by Pet Shop Boys, Cyndi Lauper. P!nk, Shakira, Lady Gaga, Gloria Estefan, Cher, Beyoncé, Demi Lovato, Stevie Nicks, Katy Perry, Chaka Khan, Christina Aguilera, and most significantly, Madonna. In fact, it was a Madonna tune, “I Rise” from 2019’s Madame X, that earned Young her Best Remixed Recording, Non-Classical […]

Don’t Pull the Plug

Even the most devoted listeners to electronic music must admit that things were getting kind of stale. But things have changed over the course of the last year, beginning with Billie Eilish’s thrilling and Grammy Award-winning When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? The good news is that there’s more where that came from. Eilish wasn’t the only plugged-in act to score Grammy gold in early 2020. Far from being the Chemical Brothers best album, No Geography (Astralwerks) nevertheless scored two Grammys, one Best Dance / Electronic Album and one for Best Dance Recording (for the song “Got […]

More Than Just a Memory

In the hierarchy of divas, few would disagree that Betty Buckley ranks close to the top. From her Tony Award-winning star turn in the Broadway musical Cats and her recent run in the national tour of the revival of Hello, Dolly, to the countless other musicals in which she’s performed including 1776, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Triumph of Love, and Sunset Boulevard. Not limited to the stage, Buckley has been acting on the big and small screen alike for more than 40 years, beginning with her portrayal of compassionate gym teacher Miss Collins in the Sissy Spacek version of […]