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Arts

A Perfect Holiday Blend

by B.A. Nilsson December 20, 2012

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  Even as die-hard a fan such as I has to admit that there can be a certain sameness to a Boston Camerata Christmas program. But I counter the dreaded December assault of horrible holiday music ...

Union College Memorial Chapel

Back There Again

by Ann Morrow December 20, 2012

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  There is a marvelous passage, early in Tolkien’s The Hobbit, where Bilbo Baggins, reluctant host to a company of dwarves who are talking and singing of their lost riches, is suddenly seized with a jealous ...

The Trouble With Alfred

by Laura Leon December 13, 2012

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Having just released North by Northwest to enormous acclaim, filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock is asked if now, at the age of 60, it’s time for him to retire. Clearly miffed, he sets out instead to find ...

Broadcasting With Bite

by John Rodat December 6, 2012

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  The audience at Ira Glass’s presentation/performance was, evidently, very familiar with the NPR producer and host’s long-running program This American Life: During both of the evening’s question-and-answer periods (Why two? More on that later), they ...

1 comment Troy Savings Bank Music Hall

Humbug

by Paul Rapp December 6, 2012

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  John Waters and me, we got some history. In the fall of 1973 I was a straight-off-the-farm freshman at SUNY Albany, and I got a mysterious invitation to a private film screening in the State ...

1 comment The Egg

Short and Too Sweet

by James Yeara December 6, 2012

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  Frank Capra’s 1946 film It’s a Wonderful Life is a beloved holiday classic today. The two-hour-and-10-minute black-and-white film is as sentimental as movies come (“Capra-corn”), but there’s an edge to it, as there is in ...

Capital Repertory Theatre

Snow Job

by Ann Morrow December 6, 2012

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  Toward the end of his life, Leo Tolstoy turned away from artifice, including the fiction of his own novels. It stands to reason, then, that he would find the latest adaptation of Anna Kareninaespecially disappointing. ...

Art Beat

by Shawn Stone December 6, 2012

  THE PRICE OF CELEBRITY Back in October 2011, an entertaining and unnerving documentary titled Craptastic! had a one-night-only screening at the Spectrum 8 Theatres. It chronicled the attempt by producer and Chatham resident John James (of ...

Gift Guide: Video

by Shawn Stone December 6, 2012

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  First, before we get into the really super stuff for the cinephile in your life, a consumer alert: The retail chains are offering some insane price reductions this holiday season. Wander through Best Buy, and ...

Gift Guide: Classic Children’s Books

by Erin Pihlaja December 6, 2012

  I was an avid reader as a child (my mother once questioned the pace of my consumption during an elementary school book-a-thon), and my tastes and range were quite varied. Now that I have two ...

1 comment

Gift Guide: Literature

by Josh Potter December 6, 2012

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  For the first time since 1977, there was no Pulitzer Prize awarded for fiction. Similarly, there hasn’t seemed to be any singular buzz-book this year—barring perhaps 50 Shades of Grey or J.K. Rowling’s first adult ...

Holiday Gift Guide: Tech Treasures

by Rick Marshall November 29, 2012

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  ’Tis the season for giving the tech geek on your list something special. Fortunately, there’s no shortage of gifts that are guaranteed to elicit the desired level of awe from their recipients—and if you’re lucky, ...

Holiday Gift Guide: Video Games

by David King November 29, 2012

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  The gamer in your household is probably getting on your nerves just about now. With the holidays rolling in, game companies have let loose the floodgates and all the megasequels have hit the shelves. Halo ...

Holiday Gift Guide: Toys

by Erin Pihlaja November 29, 2012

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Last year a video of a little girl ranting about the oppression of toy manufacturers went viral. Riley Maida, who at the time was 4 years old, stood in the toy aisle of a store ...

Art Beat

by Shawn Stone November 29, 2012

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  THAT HOLIDAY FEELING As the late Andy Williams so memorably crooned, “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.” The State of New York gets into the holiday act this Sunday (Dec. 2) with the ...

Empire State Plaza

Dancing As Fast As They Can

by Shawn Stone November 29, 2012

(L-R) JENNIFER LAWRENCE and BRADLEY COOPER star in SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK

  This riotously entertaining comedy finds its tears and laughter in the budding romance of a recently discharged mental patient (and violent felon) with a grieving widow who has been working out her sorrow by fucking ...

Fantastic Journey

by Ann Morrow November 29, 2012

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  Life of Pi launches with a terrifically exciting shipwreck that includes zoo animals, some of them large and carnivorous, with the human passengers desperately trying to survive the sinking of their ship in the middle ...

Ho Ho Ho

by Laura Leon November 29, 2012

  I’ll admit, finding out that there was no Santa devastated me. I mean, coming across those bags of toys that could only be for me confirmed that I had been a very, very bad child. ...

Sexual Healing

by John Rodat November 20, 2012

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  The subject matter of The Sessions, the tale of a disabled man’s quest for physical intimacy, seems to promise melodrama. Paralysis may not constitute a genre, per se, but it is a powerful metaphor and ...

Toothless

by Ann Morrow November 20, 2012

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  The Cullens are not “real” vampires and neither are the members of the clans they enlist for The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn—Part 2. If you’ve seen any of the preceding films, you already know this, ...

The Presence of Greatness

by Laura Leon November 20, 2012

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  How to make a movie about Abraham Lincoln? What portion of a life, a presidency, an immense political footprint, would you focus on? These had to be questions director Steven Spielberg thought long and hard ...

Man Out of Time

by B.A. Nilsson November 20, 2012

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  The six-DVD set that Shout! Factory released last year was as wonderful a bounty of Ernie Kovacs material as you could desire, righting the wrong inflicted by an earlier collection that chopped his shows to ...

Licensed To Thrill

by Ann Morrow November 15, 2012

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  Grim. Sensationally grim. In Skyfall, part three of the Daniel Craig-James Bond reboot, 007 is hit by friendly fire and given up for dead. In the opening sequence. And that’s not even the heavy part. ...

Sins of the Script

by Laura Leon November 15, 2012

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  An uneasy cross between After Hours and Crimes and Misdemeanors, The Details charts the moral ambiguity of its protagonist, Dr. Jeff Lang (Tobey Maguire), as he confronts a seemingly endless pile of inconveniences and moral ...

Green Is Good

by Shawn Stone November 15, 2012

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  Revisionist tales that rewrite the back stories of famous works are darn near irresistible, from Wide Sargasso Sea’s Third World, feminist critique of Jane Eyre to Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead’s witty take on Hamlet. ...

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