Arts/Life

Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
5:01 pm
Fri July 25, 2014

Not My Job: We Ask A San Francisco Drag Queen About Queens, N.Y.

Jose Guzman Colon Courtesy Peaches Christ

Originally published on Fri July 25, 2014 5:12 pm

Behind all the nerd billionaires and trendy restaurants in today's San Francisco, there is another city, where the most interesting people aren't wearing hoodies — they're wearing spike heels, glitter catsuits and fantastic hair.

We've invited Peaches Christ, Queen of San Francisco Drag Queens, to play a game called "Fuggedaboutit!" Three questions for a drag queen about Queens — that borough of New York City destined to be the next hipster capital now that Brooklyn is old news.

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Movie Interviews
3:33 pm
Fri July 25, 2014

In Which Colin Firth Debunks Some Myths About Working With Woody Allen

Woody Allen directs --€“ that's right, directs --€” Colin Firth and Emma Stone in Magic in the Moonlight.
Jack English Sony Pictures Classics

Originally published on Fri July 25, 2014 4:30 pm

In Magic in the Moonlight, a new film from Woody Allen, Colin Firth plays a 1920s stage magician who is also an expert at debunking spiritualists. Stanley, Firth's character, takes on the case of a young woman, played by Emma Stone, who is a supposedly adept medium.

Firth tells NPR's Robert Siegel how some of the more well-known myths about working will Allen checked out, and why he's been appearing in fewer comedies.

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The Salt
2:45 pm
Fri July 25, 2014

Can Finishing A Big Bowl Of Ramen Make Dreams Come True?

At Yume Wo Katare, eating ramen is treated as a path to personal fulfillment.
Andrea Shea for WBUR

Originally published on Fri July 25, 2014 5:40 pm

You can find ramen, the Japanese noodle soup that's meant to be slurped, almost anywhere in the U.S. these days. Ramen shops continue to pop up, and you can find renditions on the menus of restaurants and gastropubs.

But there's a truly funky noodle spot in Cambridge called Yume Wo Katare that serves more than just ramen.

There aren't many restaurants where you get praised by everyone around you for clearing your plate or bowl. But that's exactly what happens at Yume Wo Katare.

"Everyone, he did a good job!"

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This Week's Must Read
2:45 pm
Fri July 25, 2014

Fiction Explores The Push And Pull Of Arab-Israeli Identity

Originally published on Fri July 25, 2014 3:33 pm

To be an Arab living in Israel proper has long been a challenging proposition. Even sussing out what to call them has political implications: Arab Israelis? Israeli Arabs? Palestinian Israelis? Or maybe just Palestinians? Arabs in Israel live lives that constantly — often stressfully — straddle two cultures: They are all at once ethnically Arab and citizens of the Jewish state.

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Movie Reviews
11:13 am
Fri July 25, 2014

Philip Seymour Hoffman Leaves Indelible Bond In 'Most Wanted Man'

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Movie Reviews
9:06 am
Fri July 25, 2014

'Lucy': Hot Buttered Popcorn, With Plenty Of Nuts

Universal Pictures

Originally published on Fri July 25, 2014 12:48 pm

What would you do if you could access 100 percent of your brain's potential processing power? Reverse climate change? Pick up new languages while you sleep? Pay your rent on time? Invent an iPhone capable of making and receiving telephone calls?

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The Two-Way
6:15 am
Fri July 25, 2014

Book News: Amazon Reports Big Quarterly Loss

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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Planet Money
5:09 am
Fri July 25, 2014

Self-Published Authors Make A Living — And Sometimes A Fortune

The cover of Michael Bunker's self published book Pennsylvania Omnibus.
Michael Bunker

Originally published on Fri July 25, 2014 11:32 am

Five years ago, printing your own book was stigmatized and was seen as a mark of failure.

"But now," says Dana Beth Weinberg, a sociologist at Queens College who is studying the industry, "the self-published authors walk into the room, and they say, oh, well, 'I made a quarter million dollars last year, or $100,000, or made $10,000.' And it is still more than what some of these authors are making with their very prestigious contracts."

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NPR Story
3:02 am
Fri July 25, 2014

It's Time For Comic-Con!

Originally published on Fri July 25, 2014 6:14 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Movies
3:04 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

Revisiting An 'Endless Summer'

Widely considered one of the best surfer movies in American history, The Endless Summer celebrates its 50th anniversary this week.
Monterey Media Inc.

Originally published on Fri July 25, 2014 5:49 am

"This is Bruce Brown, thank you for watching, I hope you enjoyed my film."

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Movie Reviews
3:04 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

Maturity And Improvisation In 'Happy Christmas'

Cast members including Anna Kendrick (center) and Lena Dunham (left), seen here with filmmaker Joe Swanberg's son Jude (right), improvised many of the film's scenes.
Magnolia Pictures

Originally published on Fri July 25, 2014 6:01 am

Reckless immaturity in young people is generally diagnosed across generations, most often by parents worried about their supposedly underachieving kids. That makes the premise of Joe Swanberg's Happy Christmas relatively refreshing, even as it covers well-known ground.

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Movie Reviews
3:04 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

'A Most Wanted Man': A Parable Grounded In The Real World

Philip Seymour Hoffman stars in A Most Wanted Man, director Anton Corbijn's adaptation of John le Carré's 2008 novel, as German intelligence officer Günther Bachmann.
Roadside Attractions

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 3:46 pm

Fittingly, one of Philip Seymour Hoffman's final performances is in a movie about role-playing. The masterly actor mutters and growls his way through A Most Wanted Man as a spy who's simultaneously fighting two losing wars: against the West's enemies as well as his own putative allies.

Further deepening the movie's ambiguity, the American actor plays a German in a story whose payoff is pungently anti-American.

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Author Interviews
2:21 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

When It Comes To Creativity, Are Two Heads Better Than One?

Brothers and aviation pioneers Orville and Wilbur Wright walk together in 1910.
National Archives Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 3:52 pm

Joshua Wolf Shenk doesn't believe in the myth of the lone genius. "What has one person ever done alone?" he asks NPR's Robert Siegel. "We think of Martin Luther King and Sigmund Freud and Warren Buffett and Steve Jobs as these great solo creators, but in fact, if you look into the details of their life, they are enmeshed in relationships all the way through."

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Book Reviews
2:15 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

'Tigerman' Will Get Its Claws Into You

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 4:22 pm

How do you know when a book has hooked you? When it really gets you in the guts and won't let go?

When you can't stop telling people about it. When you catch yourself inserting the title of the book into conversations where it has no place, breathlessly insisting to all your friends and relations that they need to read this book right now, and waving it around on elevators and hoping that someone asks you about it.

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Book Reviews
12:27 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

'Panic In A Suitcase' Puts A Fresh Spin On A Coming-To-America Story

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 2:45 pm

There's a wonderful 1982 memoir called An Orphan in History by the late Village Voice writer Paul Cowan. It's about Cowan's search for his European Jewish roots, and in it he says something about the sacrifices of older generations of immigrants that's always stayed with me. Cowan says: "Millions of immigrant families . . . left the economically and culturally confining Old World towns where they were raised, and paid for the freedom and prosperity this country offered with their pasts."

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Arts/Life
9:58 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Film Review: Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes

  Jack Fields reviews:  Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes

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Movies
9:58 am
Thu July 24, 2014

How To Name Your Sequel II: Not Just Roman Numerals Anymore

If you want to move beyond just numbers for your sequel titles, critic Bob Mondello says there are a few informal rules you need to follow.

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 4:22 pm

Remember when movie companies just put Roman numerals at the end of titles when they made sequels? Rocky II, Rocky III, Rocky IV. Well, not anymore.

This summer, we've had X-Men: Days of Future Past, with no mention that it's either the sixth or seventh X-Men movie, depending on how you're counting. Also 22 Jump Street, the across-the-street follow-up to 21 Jump Street. And Begin Again (which ought to be a sequel, but isn't).

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Ask Me Another
8:19 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Random Questions With: Andy Serkis

"I don't know if I'm the best at it, but I have a go." -Serkis on performance capture
David James Twentieth Century Fox

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 3:24 pm

Andy Serkis is a renowned actor, but you may not recognize his face. The most famous of his roles include the "ring-junkie" Gollum in The Lord of the Rings films and Caesar in Rise of the Planet of the Apes and this summer's Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. Serkis disappears completely into his characters, thanks to performance capture technology that films his face and body movements, and translates them to digitally created avatars.

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Ask Me Another
8:19 am
Thu July 24, 2014

How To Succeed At Trivia

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 10:41 am

Is listening to our show the secret to succeeding at trivia games? And how! In this quiz, the answers are common phrases and titles that begin with "how," such as How I Met Your Mother.

Heard in Episode 322: A Primate Example

Ask Me Another
8:19 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Fair-Weather Friends

There's a trivia storm in the forecast: All the answers in this quiz are celebrities and characters whose names are weather-related. Which poet's travels were blocked by ice crystals? Robert Frost!

Heard in Episode 322: A Primate Example

Ask Me Another
8:19 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Place That Band

Geography rocks! Jonathan Coulton sings songs by classic rock bands named after cities, states, countries and continents, while rewriting the lyrics to hint at the locations.

Heard in Episode 322: A Primate Example

Ask Me Another
8:19 am
Thu July 24, 2014

The Most Unusual Tea Shop In The World

At the Ask Me Another tea shop, we don't sell chai, but we do have tea that encourages faith and devotion: "loyal-tea." That's because all answers in this game sound like "tea." Share a cup with us!

Heard in Episode 322: A Primate Example

Ask Me Another
8:19 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Andy Serkis: God Save The Queen's English

Andy Serkis.
Amanda Schwab/Starpix

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 2:45 pm

In his Ask Me Another Challenge, Andy Serkis (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, The Lord of the Rings) helps expand your vocabulary to include a spot of British slang. Any idea what the "collywobbles" are, or what happens when you throw on a "boob tube" before leaving the house? You'll be speaking like a Brit in no time.

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Ask Me Another
8:19 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Patriotic Language

Why do we call them "French fries" even though they aren't French? When you're done pondering that question, you'll find that all answers in this final round contain nationalities.

Heard in Episode 322: A Primate Example

Pop Culture
6:35 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Thanks To Backpack's Revival, Lugging Stuff Is Fashionable Again

So trendy. Again.
Shutterstock

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 11:33 am

Backpacks are making a comeback. Which shouldn't be surprising. We're so obsessed with athletic wear designed to be worn everywhere but the gym, so it would seem inevitable that sports bags would make an appearance, too.

But it's not the bag filled with American history books that kids heave to school. Nor is it the rugged, nylon thing athletes carry around. These backpacks are clever examples of fashion following function.

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Book Reviews
5:04 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Can I Get A Do-Over? Shadow Selves And Second Chances

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 10:01 am

Two remarkable graphic novels being released this week are themed around shadow-selves, legacies and second chances: Bryan Lee O'Malley's Seconds is about a woman given the opportunity to magically undo past mistakes, while Gene Luen Yang and Sonny Liew's The Shadow Hero revises a mysterious golden-age superhero called the Green Turtle by fleshing out his Asian-American origins.

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The Salt
4:13 am
Thu July 24, 2014

With Help From America's Test Kitchen, Why Buy When You Can DIY?

This hazelnut-chocolate spread looks like the iconic Nutella, but it tastes more richly of hazelnuts, says Chris Kimball.
Anthony Tieuli America's Test Kitchen

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 1:49 pm

Even people who love to cook don't make everything from scratch. You might make a homemade graham cracker crust, but who makes graham crackers?

Chris Kimball, that's who.

The host of America's Test Kitchen on TV and radio says there are quite a few foods you'd never think of making for yourself that you actually can. But why would you go to the trouble of hacking things — balsamic vinegar, Greek yogurt, caramel, Nutella spread, dairy-free whipped cream — that are so easily bought in the store?

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Movie Reviews
12:57 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

'A Hard Day's Night': A Pop Artifact That Still Crackles With Energy

The Beatles perform one of their songs while filming A Hard Day's Night in 1964.
Evening Standard Getty Images

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 3:19 pm

Back in 1964, movie audiences were treated to three hit musicals. Two of them — Mary Poppins and My Fair Lady — won scads of Oscars. But it was the third that announced the future, and it did so from its opening chord.

What followed from that chord was what we call The Sixties.

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Animals
12:57 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Cat PDA Vs. Human PDA, And Other Animal Behavior Explained

Veterinarian Vint Virga says that animals in zoos, like this lion, need to have a bit of control over their environment.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 3:40 pm

From feisty kittens to pacing cheetahs, Vint Virga knows animal behavior.

A veterinarian who specializes in behavioral medicine, Virga has treated many household pets in his clinic. But for the past five years he has been working mostly with leopards, wolves, bears, zebras and other animals living in zoos and wildlife parks. He deals with such issues as appetites, anxiety and obsessive behavior.

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Wisdom Watch
10:24 am
Wed July 23, 2014

Two Prominent Museum Directors Encourage 'New Ways Of Thinking'

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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