Posted inArts & Culture

Land, Lots of Land

Lina Bertucci at Rhona Hoffman, through October 19 Joel Sternfeld: Walking the High Line at Schneider, through October 26 Imposing scale, rich details, seductive depth, and a mix of ordinariness and oddity give a startling presence to Lina Bertucci’s seven color landscapes at Rhona Hoffman, most at least four feet on the smaller side (the […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Jump to Cow Heaven

Jump to Cow Heaven, Profiles Theatre. Gill Adams’s play, set in 1966, is completely true to its period: accounts of misunderstood sociopaths were a staple of the 60s and 70s. But we’ve passed the historical moment for sympathy with the devil, so the true story of escaped British convict Frank Mitchell evokes impatience and disgust […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Comfortable Shoes

Comfortable Shoes, Royal George Theatre Center. This perfectly packaged musical autobiography by Las Vegas crooner Clint Holmes is not your usual feel-good success story, though Holmes’s pop score is definitely upbeat. Written with Nelson Kole, it’s an identity quest: Clay, the son of a white British opera singer and a black American jazz musician, must […]

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Deborah Butterfield

Writing about Deborah Butterfield, critic James Yood identified her subject as “a nostalgic trope–the stuff of revery and myth.” Her life-size horse sculptures at Zolla/Lieberman do indeed hark back to the preindustrial past, not only because the horse was a more common subject in earlier art but because hers appear to be made of wood. […]

Posted inMusic

Sleater Kinney

Many Americans are disgusted by the U.S. government’s response to last year’s terrorist attacks, but you wouldn’t know that from most of the music released since then. On their fierce new album, One Beat (Kill Rock Stars), Portland’s Sleater-Kinney step up and tackle the issue with an approach that’s neither didactic pronouncement nor self-absorbed reaction. […]

Posted inNews & Politics

News of the Weird

Lead Stories A September article in the New York Post highlighted a popular feature of Mattel’s Nimbus 2000, a toy version of Harry Potter’s flying broomstick: its handle vibrates. (Sex shops are reportedly selling it for twice the $20 retail price.) Reviewing the toy on-line, a Texas mother wrote: “I was surprised at how long […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Drawn to an old passion

Growing up in Washington Park and West Chatham in the 60s, Eugene Mitchell watched The Flintstones and read Mad magazine and comic strips like Johnny Hart’s B.C. Those influences reemerged in 1981 when he created his comic strip Stakeout. The title character, a hapless black postal worker, is something of an alter ego. “Stakeout is […]

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The Leopard Man

This economically constructed and haunting chiller (1943, 66 min.) from the inspired team of producer Val Lewton and director Jacques Tourneur doesn’t have the reputation of the two other films they worked on together in the early 40s, Cat People and I Walked With a Zombie. In part that’s because its ending is a bit […]

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In Print: Mark Swartz’s novel thesis

Mark Swartz protests a bit too much about the distance he keeps from the protagonist of his first novel, Instant Karma. Though Swartz seems to favor nonautobiographical fiction, young David Felsenstein, underemployed anarchist, fantasizes incessantly about blowing up the Harold Washington Library Center–where Swartz will read from his novel next week. Consider yourself warned. “I […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Lucky Red Dragon Karaoke Night

Lucky Red Dragon Karaoke Night, Stir-Friday Night!, at Hi Ricky Performance Loft. The conceit is that the karaoke machine at a small Chinese restaurant is broken, so the owner enlists her family and employees to perform improv games instead. “We make funny for you,” promises Lindo Lin (Daisy Castro). The premise offers a pu pu […]

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I Am Taraneh, 15

The women’s pictures of 1930s Hollywood carried an emotional wallop partly because they took place in an era of social and economic tumult, which may explain the power of this Iranian feature by Rasoul Sadr Ameli (The Girl in the Sneakers). The title character, a teenage schoolgirl whose widowed father is a political prisoner, marries […]