The Scholar Must Die: Lars von Trier’s ‘Nymphomaniac’

I began to write, at the force of a mental flood, about Lars von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac' parts I and II on the subway the morning after I finished the second film. First, I got down what I thought, beginning with how angry I was that the Scholar character who saves Joe ended up being so … Continue reading The Scholar Must Die: Lars von Trier’s ‘Nymphomaniac’

A Knock-out Drama: the Private World Explored in ‘Concussion’

'Concussion': She said “I have to do something.” Abby Ableman reads and vacuums at the same time, fixes up hole-in-the-wall apartments in Manhattan, and spends inordinate amounts of time in cycling classes, amidst the aimless, though healthy-minded chatter of other soccer moms. Most importantly, Abby violently, helplessly curses at her son when he hits her … Continue reading A Knock-out Drama: the Private World Explored in ‘Concussion’

Reflection: “The Dinner Party” (2014)

  To walk around “The Dinner Party” is to greet history in a fuller, less inhibited manner. Designed, built and crafted by historian and artist Judy Chicago and dozens of artisans, and funded by the Elizabeth A. Sackler Foundation between 1974 and 1979, it is a tribute to women from the beginning of recorded history … Continue reading Reflection: “The Dinner Party” (2014)

Oscars Watch: Cate Blanchett in ‘Blue Jasmine’

Cate Blanchett’s Oscar-winning role in 'Blue Jasmine' was the grittiest and most econo-socially relevant of the season. There was the sweetest Dame Judi Dench in 'Philomena', the raspiest, most frightening Meryl Streep in 'August: Osage County',a sultry, mysterious, and brilliant yet cracked Amy Adams in 'American Hustle', and of course Sandra Bullock’s space heroine of … Continue reading Oscars Watch: Cate Blanchett in ‘Blue Jasmine’

Wangechi Mutu’s “The Fantastic Journey”

Having previously written about the very ….how should I put it? well-documented Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit at the Brooklyn Museum, I’ve also been ruminating on the truly fantastical collection of work on display in the same museum, but with no cameras allowed, by Wangechi Mutu. The exhibit is quiet, so that you can feel the … Continue reading Wangechi Mutu’s “The Fantastic Journey”

The First Feminist Rom-Com: ‘In a World’

'In a World…' is perhaps the only successful feminist critique of the entertainment industry to ever have been brought forward in the form of a romantic comedy. The story: an eccentric and graceless yet very attractive female protagonist named Carol Solomon lives under her glaringly misogynistic VoiceOver artist father’s (the big-wig Sam Sotto) reluctant wing, … Continue reading The First Feminist Rom-Com: ‘In a World’

Project Continua + The Sackler Center

brooklynmuseum: I was blown away by the success of Saturday’s Wikipedia edit-a-thon. We couldn’t have hoped for a more enthusiastic or diverse community of participants. Project Continua’s Director, Gina Luria Walker, said during her remarks that by editing articles about historical women, we were “making history by providing an alternative narrative of the past.” A … Continue reading Project Continua + The Sackler Center

Blame, Sweet Blame: ‘Enough Said’

With all the makings of a Hollywood romantic comedy, Enough Said is this year’s winner in the category of light-hearted yet beautiful moral film stories. There is a question and an answer in this little gem, and Julia Louis-Dreyfus’s character, Eva, asks and answers: is there a way to prevent heartbreak? The answer is in … Continue reading Blame, Sweet Blame: ‘Enough Said’