Laughing Matters: The Max Fischer Players

Sometimes comedy illuminates hard truths with a pointed urgency that other means can’t quite achieve. Sometimes comedy is just funny. This series of posts is mostly about the former instances, but the latter is valuable, too. “She’s the smartest person in the world, general. I think we ought to listen to her.” I love this with an intensity I’ll never be able to truly convey. Previous entries in this series can be found by clicking on the “Laughing Matters” tag. Continue reading Laughing Matters: The Max Fischer Players

The Art of the Sell: Wes Anderson, “My Life, My Card”

These posts celebrate the movie trailers, movie posters, commercials, print ads, and other promotional material that stand as their own works of art.  Wes Anderson is rightly earning a fleet of social media raves for his new Christmas-themed ad for H&M. Thankfully, it’s far better than what he came up with the last time he pointed his camera at Adrien Brody on a train. It also got me thinking about other commercial spots Anderson has directed, including his contribution to the American Express “My Life, My Card” campaign. The meticulous detailing that can swerve towards preciousness can get wearying across … Continue reading The Art of the Sell: Wes Anderson, “My Life, My Card”

Top Ten Movies of 2012 — Number One

There are some movies that inspire adoration from their very first moments, that simply feel exactly right. That’s what happened when I saw Wes Anderson’s sophomore effort, Rushmore. I truly thought that would be a one-of-a-kind experience from the director, especially as his very particular brand of pinched emotion and tightrope whimsy became a little more strained with every outing. Oh me of little faith. From the very beginning of Moonrise Kingdom, with Bob Balaban calmly, sagely explaining the world of New Penzance, Anderson offers a pitch-perfect delivery of an enchanting tone, spirit and rhythm that is uniquely his own, … Continue reading Top Ten Movies of 2012 — Number One

Spectrum Check

And so we come to the end of another calendar year of reviews for Spectrum Culture. The site is already in the process of downshifting ahead of the holidays, so there was a little less new content going up this week. I still took my turn in the film review rotation, however, with an evaluation of a new drama that got wobbly wheels but is finally made steady by a couple of very fine performances. Most of my words this week were expended on our various “end of the year” lists. For the Favorite Books feature, I wrote about Richard … Continue reading Spectrum Check