The Bottom Line has been closed for eleven years, it closed January 2nd, 2004. I think about it all the time because I spent a great deal of my life there. One of the things I'm working on is an oral history viewed from the perspective of the performers who performed there.
How much freedom of expression does Black America withhold in exchange for a measure of safety in White America? What do we gain by that, and what do we lose? How much of our flavor, our life rhythm do we have to suppress daily to fit in, thrive, and survive?
It's oft been said that those who don't learn from history, are doomed to repeat it. But you need to know what your history is before you can learn from it. Selma DVDs in every classroom is a start.
It is surprising and unnerving when we hear about these couples who prevailed for so long but didn't ultimately succeed at their union. It can be hard to understand what drives people to split up after so many years together.
We seek advice in a variety of places (parents, friends, mentors), but when author David Rensin does -- at least for the past sixteen years -- he asks himself, "What would Louie do?"
Top Five is able to provide interesting social commentary because the core of the film is good -- it is a good romantic comedy. He has taken two of Hepburn's essential characteristics, charisma and chemistry, and put them on screen.
The holidays are over and it seems as if 2015 will be a challenging year for you. All of you are headed for a divorce, which is hard enough, but you also have young children.
Say whatever else you want to about 2014, here's one thing I know for sure. It had 365 days. And since new movies opened on screens across the USA on a great many of those days, I feel compelled to consider the year in films.
Shrum and Lowry discuss North Korea's film fatwa and Cheney's eagerness to become Mr. Torture. Then: If Nixon recognized China 25 years after its Communist Revolution, why shouldn't Obama do so with Cuba 50 years later? And can the third Bush beat the first woman?
As bad as Sony's cave-in, though, is the ridiculously false "shock" at the hackers' success in exposing the emails. There is incredible naiveté from everyone involved.
Chris Rock has a lot to say about race and humor and culture, and about where an artist fits into that discussion. Especially a black artist. It's hard to think about anyone better suited to talk about that right now.
Pryor's legacy -- his brilliance, his contradictions and ultimate tragedy -- lingers in the shadows of Chris Rock's Top Five. He is referenced outright by Rock's character Andre Allen during a conversation about comedy's greats. But the allusions to Pryor go deeper.
While taking it to the streets-style activism is certainly viable, I want to make a case for another form: Art.
The guests that pass through the portals of Bullseye with Jesse Thorn run the gamut of show business and the conversations can get serious. Still, given the host's comedy connections, no one would debate that his show counts as a comedy podcast.
Remember in Pretty Woman when Richard Gere asks Julia Roberts what happens after the prince rescues Cinderella? Not missing a beat, she says, she resc...
I was contemplating walking out of Top Five during the first half hour, but, boy, am I glad I didn't. Top Five, directed, written and starring Chris Rock, is a slow build like a set up for one terrific joke.