August 19, 2019

Hollywood

"“We don’t want to fight y’all. We’re not trying to go to jail.” That’s what A$AP Rocky, the 30-year-old New York City rapper, can be heard saying in a video of an encounter with strangers in Sweden that has ballooned into an international crisis."

"It all started with the ear. In retrospect, there couldn't have been a more fitting note for Quentin Tarantino to begin his career on. Horrified contemporaneous reviews of his 1992 debut Reservoir Dogs queasily attempted to tip-toe around..."

"When the noxious fanboys who howl about movies being too "PC" and "woke" inevitably revved up after the recent announcements of a female Thor and a potential female 007, I did what I always do: roll my eyes. There will always be an element of..."

"The Great Recession has, in many ways, defined American life for the past decade. The economic wounds continue to fester, particularly among a citizenry so accustomed to pining for precisely the sort of wanton excess that the Recession’s..."

"Game of Thrones’ ending left many fans disappointed with what they viewed as lazy or misguided storytelling, or sloppy writing that abandoned many of the show’s longstanding plot threads. Among the most hotly debated, even confusing choices the..."

"If you’re not familiar with the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Cats — or even if you are — then you probably have many, many questions after glimpsing December’s film adaptation, whose trailer pounced upon an unsuspecting and baffled nation this..."

"Netflix may have lost US subscribers for the first time since it began making its own shows, but that didn't stop the streaming giant from dropping new figures about how many people are sucked into its Adam Sandler vortex. (Spoiler: More than..."

"Befitting Stranger Things’ loving ode to the ’80s, the golden age of merchandising, there sure is a lot of Stranger Things crap for sale. Need a copy of Hopper’s Magnum P.I.–inspired Hawaiian shirt for your own date night? Provided you’re not...."

"To live in California is to make a wary peace with an existential dichotomy: breathtaking weather, astounding natural beauty, bounteous food and wine, stimulating multiculturalism and … the possibility of imminent, unpredictable disaster...."

"Scarlett Johansson became something of a conservative hero on Friday for speaking out against identity politics. She told As If magazine, in quotes excerpted by the Daily Mail, “You know, as an actor I should be allowed to play any person, or..."

"There’s something oddly poetic and strangely redundant about a stateside spin on ITV2’s feverishly compulsive hit Love Island. It’s an American remake of a British dating show modelled on a dusty American blueprint, making it the televisual..."

"“I get angry easily” sounds like hyperbole, but for Rip Torn, it may have been the understatement of the century. The actor, who died Tuesday at his home in Connecticut at 88, was well known for his outsize outlaw persona. Most famously, he..."

"Watching a ragtag group of kids save the day never seems to get old. That’s what the Netflix series “Stranger Things,” the third season of which premièred on July 4th, continues to bet its success on. The Duffer brothers, the creative team..."

"Hundreds of thousands of fans anticipated the release of Stranger Things 3 last week, but not everyone was happy about the show’s new season. The Truth Initiative, an anti-tobacco organization, recently released a report showing that Netflix’s..."

"Does watching television make people stupid? Are stupid people more likely to vote for populist parties? And can these effects linger for years, or even decades? If you had asked me a few days ago, I would have been highly skeptical of these..."

"When the casting of Halle Bailey as Ariel in Disney’s live-action The Little Mermaid was announced earlier this week, it was met with positive surprise. Fans who want to see greater diversity on screen have come to expect disappointment when it..."

"Seinfeld, one of the most successful TV shows ever made, turns 30 on July 5, 2019. Its pilot, “The Seinfeld Chronicles,” aired that evening in 1989, but the show wouldn’t return for nearly a full year — its second episode didn’t air until May of..."

"Katherine Ryan’s Netflix comedy special is like a saucy Gilmore Girls, and she’s a woke Lorelai who doesn’t need a man — and pretty much hopes never to have one. The Canadian comedian follows up her 2017 stand-up, In Trouble, with a new release..."

"It's hard to think of Midsommar as a horror movie. No, not because we use genre-stigmatizing terms that anxiously reclassify great horror films as "thrillers" or "elevated horror" or "post-horror." And it's also not because of the film's..."

"To keep viewers immersed in their version of the 1980s, producers of the sci-fi horror series “Stranger Things” built their biggest shrine to the decade yet: a shopping mall. To replicate a mall from 1985—the year when the third season of the..."

"The art of the counterfactual is a tricky one, and it takes all sorts. If you are Philip Roth, you plow your deep dread into the thought of Franklin D. Roosevelt being defeated by Charles Lindbergh in the election of 1940, and of Jewish citizens..."

"Yesterday, a new musical dramedy debuting this Friday, conjures up a world we can’t begin to imagine: one in which the Beatles never existed. Somehow, after a global blackout, no one on Earth has ever heard of the band, except for the protagonist.."

"The first season of Big Little Lies was a clever trap. The show took what would have otherwise been an easily satirized narrative about affluent women and complicated it with their trauma; The Week's Lili Loofbourow succinctly called it "a kind..."

"Woody and Buzz Lightyear couldn't save Hollywood from its summer slump, and movie theater chains are feeling the pressure. Shares of AMC Entertainment (AMC) fell 5% Monday to a new all-time low, the first day of trading after the opening..."

"I get why Murder Mystery is absolutely smashing Netflix records. Because all Netflix movies are created by an all-knowing corporate algorithm, it has successfully paired two universally beloved movie stars—Adam Sandler and Jennifer Aniston—with..."

"Last Wednesday, Gady Levy, the executive director of the Streicker Center at New York’s Temple Emanu-El, herded the Israeli actors Neta Riskin and Dov Glickman through the cavernous synagogue’s hallways. Riskin and Glickman, who play the..."

"The Toy Story movies are about the secret lives of dolls and action figures that find their deepest fulfillment in a child's embrace. But they're really about what it means to be human: the joys of love and friendship and the pains of rejection..."

"I haven’t been able to stop thinking about “Striking Vipers.” Black Mirror’s best episodes are about relationships, and how technology can facilitate forms previously impossible in a pre-digital era. That’s why “San Junipero” has remained such a..."

"In 2013, I was executive editor of the NY Daily News, and we, like every other publication in the country, were covering the series finale of Breaking Bad. As one of the most popular and critically acclaimed shows in history, the finale was..."

"Taylor Swift released the second single from her just-announced forthcoming album Lover on Thursday, and the gist of it is classic Swift: “You Need to Calm Down” tells Swift’s haters that their mission to diminish her brilliance is doomed, that..."

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JJ Editor's Picks

"On Christmas Eve of 1966, Paddy Roy Bates, a retired British army major, drove a small boat with an outboard motor seven miles off the coast of England into the North Sea. He had sneaked out of his house in the middle of the night, inspired..."

"The book that changed lecturer, activist, and current presidential candidate Marianne Williamson’s life, A Course in Miracles, is not available for free online, but its workbook is. You can find it on the website for the Foundation for..."

"Here are two sets of statements from far-distant opposites in the climate change debate. The first is from Naomi Klein, who in her book This Changes Everything paints a bleak picture of a global socioeconomic system gone wrong: “There is a..."

"Voters who trust their government — and each other — are more supportive of ambitious welfare states than those who do not. Across nations, high levels of social trust correlate with high levels of social spending. The relationship between these..."

"With the presidential campaign under way, expect to hear a lot more about a shiny new toy of progressive economic thinking, “modern monetary theory.” It seems to be the only intellectual contortion that might allow candidates to promise..."

"“We don’t want to fight y’all. We’re not trying to go to jail.” That’s what A$AP Rocky, the 30-year-old New York City rapper, can be heard saying in a video of an encounter with strangers in Sweden that has ballooned into an international crisis."

"Israel’s top officials are considering denying Reps. Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib entry to their country due to their outspoken, controversial criticism of Israel’s policy toward Palestinians, not to mention their slurs against American Jews as..."

"For most of our lives, we have been conditioned to share a piece of personal information without a moment’s hesitation: our phone number. We punch in our digits at the grocery store to get a member discount or at the pharmacy to pick up..."