“The Illusion of Choice”: Forced Freedom in Mr. Robot and Late Capitalist Society (30 October 2015)

I experience a fleeting feeling of freedom whenever I go to the grocery store.  It offers me a reprieve from the stress and anxiety that creeps up on a daily basis as I worry about deadlines approaching or what I’ll do next after I finish graduate school. And then there’s always the peripheral flutter of … Continue reading “The Illusion of Choice”: Forced Freedom in Mr. Robot and Late Capitalist Society (30 October 2015)

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Screening Classic Hollywood: “Kiss Me Kate” (1953)

As a queer, I've always had a great appreciation for the musical (I know, I know, what a stereotype, blah blah blah).  There's just something glorious about the midcentury musical, in particular those produced by MGM, the grand dame of the studio system, the one studio that one could count on (in its heyday, anyway), … Continue reading Screening Classic Hollywood: “Kiss Me Kate” (1953)

Screening History: “The Bible: In the Beginning”

Today's entry in "Screening History" is John Huston's The Bible:  In the Beginning, the last of the truly-great biblical epics that were such a part of the midcentury film landscape.  It's very easy to mock the historico-biblical epic. Often, even the most devout of epic films can slip easily into the ridiculous, but somehow this film … Continue reading Screening History: “The Bible: In the Beginning”

Reading History: “Medicis Daughter” (by Sophie Perinot)

Warning:  Some spoilers for the plot follow. Thanks to the great folks over at NetGalley, I recently had the chance to read Sophie Perinot's newest historical novel, Medicis Daughter, which chronicles the life and loves of Marguerite of Valois, the daughter of Catherine de Medicis who, through an advantageous marriage, would ultimately become (for a time) Queen … Continue reading Reading History: “Medicis Daughter” (by Sophie Perinot)

Screening History: “Barabbas” (1962)

Every so often, a genre manages to produce a film that exceeds its generic restrictions, that rises above the worst tendencies of its predecessors and becomes a work of transcendent and powerful beauty.  Barabbas, the 1962 film, is just one of those entries.  Emerging out of the midcentury cycle of historico-biblical epics that had already produced … Continue reading Screening History: “Barabbas” (1962)

Screening Classic Hollywood: “The Postman Always Rings Twice” (1946)

Perhaps no genre is as synonymous with the 1940s as the film noir, that dark and seedy body of films that peeled away the veneer of respectability that other genres such as the musical presented to reveal the rottenness beneath American culture.  This is certainly the case with the 1946 film The Postman Always Rings Twice, one … Continue reading Screening Classic Hollywood: “The Postman Always Rings Twice” (1946)