With two of Hollywood’s most consistently funny and charming actors topping the bill, a fitting subtitle for Admission could have been “Oh My God, Tina Fey and Paul Rudd: I Love Them!” Fey stars as Portia, a strait-laced admissions officer at Princeton University whose uneventful life is intruded upon by her former classmate John (Rudd), a well-meaning high school teacher. John wants to introduce Portia to his student Jeremiah (Nat Wolff), who he ... Read More
Normally movies with exceedingly long shots, a drab color palette, and no soundtrack can be tough to get through. But if the stakes are high enough, this approach can actually be engaging. Exhibit A: Romania’s official Oscar submission for Best Foreign Language Film, Beyond the Hills—a story of two friends separated by faith. When Alina (Cristina Flutur) arrives at the Romanian monastery where novice nun Voichita (Cosmina Stratan) resides, she tries to ... Read More
{SPONSORED POST} March is Women’s History Month. That women have a month at all is somewhat disheartening—implying, as it does, that the other 12 belong to men. It can often feel as if (to paraphrase the great philosopher Paula Abdul) for every two steps forward, we take two steps back. But we’ve come a long way. One hundred years ago, women were fighting for suffrage. Today, we’re debating the intricacies of Sheryl Sandberg’s manifesto. Still, ... Read More
Dear Roseanne,  I’m a 25-year-old single New Yorker and I need help suggesting a threesome to my unmarried, coupled friends. What’s the best way for me to find out if they’re interested without making things awkward? This would be my first threesome, and I only want to do this with people I know, so strangers are out of the question. –Third Wheel to Threesome  Dear Third Wheel, OK, I confess that when I was a horny ... Read More
Tehran-born Dina Nayeri knows all about being split between two worlds—her family immigrated to Oklahoma when she was ten. In A Teaspoon of Earth and Sea, Nayeri returns to 1980s Iran to tell the story of twins Saba and Mahtab, who are obsessed with American culture. After Mahtab and her mother mysteriously disappear, 11-year-old Saba is convinced that they have moved to America without her. As she grows up, Saba imagines Mahtab’s life unfolding ... Read More
  Domenica Ruta grew up outside Boston as the brainy misfit daughter of a loud, buxom, peroxide-blonde Italian mother. A vain and mercurial “narcotic omnivore,” her mom loved and hated her only daughter with equal ferocity. Their home was full of contradictions. As a kid, Ruta was given OxyContin for headaches. Her mom worked extra jobs to pay for Ruta’s dance lessons, but refused to acknowledge that her daughter was being molested. As a teenager, Ruta ... Read More
Aside from his foxiness, gangly Kiwi singer Willy Moon has a lot going for him. Apple recently used his rowdy, retro song “Yeah Yeah” for its new ad (the one with all the bouncing iPods), and it caught the earballs of countless listeners. So is there more to this neo-rockabilly pop star than one catchy song and some very well-tailored suits? We’re happy to report that we've seen him live, and he is, in fact, legit. Moon played at Piano’s ... Read More
On their sophomore album, Portland-based Sallie Ford & the Sound Outside cull the best bits from music’s past eras, creating a mercurial hybrid of rockabilly, blues, country, and garage rock. Ford’s vocals have just enough of a worn edge to sound appropriately world-weary and jaded, but she’s smooth enough in her delivery to pull off sweeter, poppier tracks. Catchy “They Told Me” brings to mind the tight hooks of fellow retro rockers the Black Keys, ... Read More
Though she sounds melancholy on her beautifully solemn debut Ripely Pine, Aly Spaltro has something to celebrate. As Lady Lamb the Beekeeper, she offers up a winning new brand of Southern discomfort (though she’s from the North), with tastes of pop, folk, and Americana. The album begins with a guitar slowly strumming sorrow, as if Spaltro is quietly waiting for the pain to go away while offering up lyrics like, “Love is selfish/Love goes tick tock ... Read More
  It’s a truth universally agreed upon, at least among those of us who came of age in the 1980s, that Cyndi Lauper is one of the coolest, most interesting people in the world. Her songs made us want to dance and bop around and roller-skate. Lauper became a superstar for belting out “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun,” and, admittedly, she did have more than her fair share of good times, sometimes criminally great times. Now 59, she has the ability to ... Read More
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