Arts/Life

Author Interviews
5:54 am
Sun September 23, 2012

'Wallflower' Film Puts Adolescence On Screen

Originally published on Sun September 23, 2012 10:43 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Now, from the small screen to the big one, and the story of a teenage boy about to begin his freshman year of high school.

(SOUNDBITE OF MOVIE, "THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER")

LOGAN LERMAN: (as Charlie) Dear Friend, I haven't really talked to anyone outside of my family all summer. But tomorrow is my first day and I really want to turn things around this year.

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Author Interviews
5:54 am
Sun September 23, 2012

In 'Mad River,' A Friendly Cop Tackles Rural Crime

Courtesy of Riverhead Hardcover

Originally published on Sun September 23, 2012 10:43 am

John Sandford has written his own five-foot shelf of novels and thrillers, most of them as part of the "Prey" series. Almost all of the books are set in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area.

His cast of characters has changed and shifted somewhat over time, but largely features Minnesota cops. The plots are centered around Lucas Davenport, a kind of superstar investigator who ages a little from book to book and has a checkered career with a bit of a bad boy reputation – one that has not prevented him from becoming a high ranking official in state law enforcement.

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Monkey See
3:33 am
Sun September 23, 2012

On Television's Biggest Night, It's Antiheroes And Maggie Smith

Maggie Smith as Violet, Dowager Countess of Grantham on Downton Abbey.
Nick Briggs PBS

Originally published on Sun September 23, 2012 10:43 am

Just as you're trying to figure out what to watch during the new television season, they come at you with the Emmy Awards, ready to bestow the big prizes from the last television season. There are some big questions about this year's slate: What happens to Downton Abbey, the swooning British import whose distaste for antiheroes and gore sets it apart from its Outstanding Drama Series rivals? How big a splash will the thriller Homeland make in its first year of eligibility?

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Sunday Puzzle
10:03 pm
Sat September 22, 2012

Finding Consecutively Good TV Shows

NPR Graphic

Originally published on Sat October 6, 2012 8:46 pm

On-air challenge: Every answer is the name of a TV show, past or present. Each can be found in consecutive letters in the sentences read. Name the TV shows. For example, in the sentence, "We watched the acrobat many times," the hidden TV show is BATMAN. Hint: Each answer has at least six letters.

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Author Interviews
3:07 pm
Sat September 22, 2012

Defending Israel At The Border Of Adulthood

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed October 3, 2012 8:37 am

At the age of 18, Shani Boianjiu, like most Israelis, began her mandatory two-year service in the Israeli Defense Forces.

Now at the ripe age of 25, she's drawn from those experiences in her first novel.

The People of Forever Are Not Afraid actually began in creative writing class when Boianjiu was studying English at Harvard University.

It turned into a novel that follows three friends: Yael, Avishag and Lea. They struggle to reconcile the rigors of army service with typical teenage angst. What results is a maelstrom of boys, body armor and bad behavior.

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Arts & Life
2:40 pm
Sat September 22, 2012

Three-Minute Fiction Round 9 Still Open

Originally published on Sat September 22, 2012 2:54 pm

A reminder from weekends on All Things Considered guest host Jacki Lyden that Round 9 of Three-Minute Fiction is still open for submissions. Our judge, Brad Meltzer, is looking for an original short story that revolves around a U.S. president — fictional or real — in under 600 words. Listeners can submit their story online at www.npr.org/threeminutefiction. The deadline for submissions is Sunday, September 23, at 11:59 p.m. ET.

Fine Art
2:40 pm
Sat September 22, 2012

The Landscape Art Legacy Of Florida's Highwaymen

Alfred Hair, Harold Newton, Al Black, James Gibson and Mary Ann Carroll were all part of the original Highwaymen.
Photos by Gary Monroe

Originally published on Sat September 22, 2012 2:54 pm

If you traveled by way of Florida's Route 1 in the '60s and '70s, you might have encountered young African-American landscape artists selling oil paintings of an idealized, candy-colored, Kennedy-era Florida. They painted palms, beaches, poinciana trees and sleepy inlets on drywall canvases — and they came to be known as the Highwaymen. The group made thousands of pictures, until the market was saturated, tastes changed, and the whole genre dwindled.

Roadside Innovation

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Movies I've Seen A Million Times
1:40 pm
Sat September 22, 2012

The Movie Michael Peña Has 'Seen A Million Times'

Actor-writer-director Woody Allen on the set of his 1984 film, Broadway Danny Rose.
Brian Hamill Getty Images

Originally published on Sun September 23, 2012 10:51 am

The weekends on All Things Considered series Movies I've Seen A Million Times features filmmakers, actors, writers and directors talking about the movies that they never get tired of watching.

For actor Michael Peña, whose credits include Crash, World Trade Center, and End of Watch, which opened in theaters this weekend, the movie he could watch a million times is Woody Allen's Broadway Danny Rose.

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Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
7:22 am
Sat September 22, 2012

CDC Director Thomas Frieden Plays 'Not My Job'

Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 22, 2012 9:49 am

Anyone who watches movies knows that when a mysterious disease breaks out ... or when zombies show up ... or when a meteorite causes people to mutate into giant glowing worms, the place you go for answers is the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

We've invited CDC Director Thomas Frieden to play a game called "Try to stop these viruses!" Companies are constantly trying to make their campaigns "go viral," infecting brains all over the world. Frieden will answer three questions about viral marketing ideas gone awry.

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Author Interviews
3:49 am
Sat September 22, 2012

The Haunted Life Of Ray 'Boom Boom' Mancini

AP

Originally published on Sat September 22, 2012 8:35 am

Ray Mancini carried hopes and ghosts into the boxing ring. He was the son of a great contender, Lenny Mancini, who was wounded in World War II before he ever got a chance at a championship. Mancini inherited his father's ring nickname — "Boom Boom" — and his championship dreams. In 1980, Mancini succeeded in winning the lightweight championship of the world, earning him widespread adoration.

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Author Interviews
3:33 am
Sat September 22, 2012

'Clifford The Big Red Dog' Turns 50 (In Human Years)

Scholastic

Originally published on Sat September 22, 2012 8:35 am

A big dog celebrates a big birthday this year: Clifford the beloved "Big Red Dog" first appeared on the literary scene 50 years ago, along with Emily Elizabeth, the little girl who loves him.

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The Picture Show
3:03 am
Sat September 22, 2012

A Photographer's Ode To Unsung Artists

Family in room, Carrefour, Haiti, 1986
Courtesy of Gary Monroe

Originally published on Sun September 23, 2012 11:39 am

This blog has a habit of featuring photographers whose names you've never heard — whose names we hadn't even heard, to be honest, except by chance encounters.

But the world is mostly populated with unsung people. And in that sense, photographer Gary Monroe's life mirrors the lives of the people he photographs.

Some quick context:

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Hardcover Nonfiction Bestsellers
1:47 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

NPR Bestsellers: Hardcover Nonfiction, Week Of Sept. 20, 2012

Bob Woodward's The Price of Politics, about the battles between Obama and Congress, debuts at No. 1.

Hardcover Fiction Bestsellers
12:43 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

NPR Bestsellers: Hardcover Fiction, Week Of September 20, 2012

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 1:44 pm

Junot Diaz tells a tale of infidelity in This Is How You Lose Her. It debuts at No. 3.

Monkey See
11:31 am
Fri September 21, 2012

The Stinkin' Thinkin' of Young Abe Lincoln

Cover of The Hypo: The Melancholic Young Lincoln © 2012 Noah Van Sciver.
Fantagraphics Books

The most beloved, most studied, most-likely-to-get-played-by-Daniel-Day-Lewis man to ever hold the office of President of the United States was himself a house divided.

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The Salt
9:53 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Three Burning Questions Answered About Salt

The Salt's most colorful salts. From left to right: Cypress black lava, red Hawaiian, and pink Bolivian rose.
Maggie Starbard NPR

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 10:18 am

Salt — it's the ultimate condiment. It's the only rock we eat, and it makes our food taste better. There are dozens of varieties, from hand-harvested Himalayan pink to plain-old kosher, to various herb-infused blends. But, as we report a lot around here, when we eat too much, it can be bad for our health.

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Movie Reviews
9:21 am
Fri September 21, 2012

The Art Of Preserving A High School 'Wallflower'

Charlie (Logan Lerman), Patrick (Ezra Miller) and Sam (Emma Watson) navigate the joys and pains of high school in The Perks of Being a Wallflower.
John Bramley Summit Entertainment

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 10:57 am

The hero of both the novel and the film The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a high school freshman loner named Charlie whose best friend committed suicide the previous spring. He's on psychiatric meds, lots of them, and still has blackouts and mysterious visions of a doting aunt who died when he was 7.

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Monkey See
7:24 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Pop Culture Happy Hour: Breakup Culture And Fall Television Predictions

NPR
  • Listen to Pop Culture Happy Hour

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The Picture Show
7:23 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Amazing Art From Ivory, But At An Extreme Expense

"A sculpture like this can take a master carver years to produce. Front and center are the popular Taoist gods Shou, Lu and Fu — symbols of long life, money, and luck. 'We hope — no, we insist — we can continue to protect these skills,' says Wang Shan, secretary-general of the China Arts and Crafts Association."
Brent Stirton National Geographic

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 8:21 pm

My immediate response to the intricate carvings in these photos is awe — maybe even admiration. I can't believe they are made by hand from one solid piece of material. With such detail and complexity, I can see why they would be coveted and sold at a high price.

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Movie Interviews
4:04 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Jake Gyllenhaal On The Rewards Of Role Research

To prepare for his role as Officer Brian Taylor in End of Watch, actor Jake Gyllenhaal did ride-alongs with law enforcement.
Scott Garfield Open Road Films

The new police drama End of Watch puts two beat cops in the middle of escalating danger when a violent drug cartel begins operating in a South L.A. neighborhood.

The cops are patrol partners played by actors Michael Peña and Jake Gyllenhaal. The characters' cop-car friendship is one that extends beyond their jobs. The nature of their work makes them more like brothers, something director David Ayer pushed to bring alive on the screen.

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Media
3:11 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Smaller Audience, Bigger Payoff For Glenn Beck

Since leaving Fox News in 2011, Glenn Beck has found his way back to TV. His Internet television network, The Blaze TV, is now available to subscribers of the Dish Network.
Kris Connor Getty Images for Dish Network

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 1:43 pm

By the time Glenn Beck left the Fox News Channel in June 2011, both sides seemed ready, even eager, to part ways. Beck announced he would move on to bigger and grander ventures with his own production company, Mercury Radio Arts, but some media critics, such as Variety's Brian Lowry, shrugged then and since.

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Movies
3:33 pm
Thu September 20, 2012

A Cop Drama That's Hard To 'Watch' (In The Best Way)

Officers Mike Zavala (Michael Peña) and Brian Taylor (Jake Gyllenhaal) tangle with a vicious drug cartel in End of Watch.
Scott Garfield Open Road Films

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 12:15 am

Cop dramas may be a dime a dozen, but David Ayer's End of Watch is one of a kind: The picture is by turns clever, compelling and unconscionable, so artful in its artifice that sometimes it almost fools you into believing that it's reality.

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Movie Reviews
3:33 pm
Thu September 20, 2012

Bullets And Buddies On The Streets Of South Central

Officers Brian Taylor (Jake Gyllenhaal) and Mike Zavala (Michael Peña) become the targets of a drug cartel in End of Watch.
Scott Garfield Open Road Films

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:53 pm

Street gangs, drugs and the Los Angeles Police Department have been ingredients in so many police thrillers that it's hard to imagine a filmmaker coming up with a fresh take — though that hasn't stopped writer-director David Ayer from trying. He's made four cops-'n'-cartels dramas since his Oscar-winning Training Day a decade ago; the latest, End of Watch, easily qualifies as the most resonant.

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Digital Life
3:06 pm
Thu September 20, 2012

Vimeo's Virtual Tip Jar Invites Viewers To Chip In

The video sharing site Vimeo has added a feature that invites users to chip in to support the filmmakers they like.
Vimeo

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 4:04 pm

From teenagers strumming guitars in their bedrooms to big studio executives in Hollywood, there are a lot of people trying to figure out how to make money from online videos. The video-sharing site Vimeo has just added to their site a feature with a time-tested history in the real world — a virtual tip jar.

Electric-bass player Brian Compton has been a musician for 20 years. He plays with a three-piece band on a San Francisco street corner and hopes for tips from afternoon commuters. He estimates that less than 1 percent of passersby actually leave a tip.

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Movie Reviews
3:03 pm
Thu September 20, 2012

Nothing To 'Dredd' About A New Action Adaptation

Judge Dredd and his protege, Anderson (Olivia Thirlby), fight a drug lord in a post-apocalyptic slum.
Joe Alblas Lionsgate

Originally published on Mon September 24, 2012 8:04 am

The prestige film festivals were abuzz this month with independent films and possible awards contenders, but for movies opening wide, September is traditionally a dump month — a fallow time between the summer and Oscar season when studios release films expected to underperform.

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Movie Reviews
3:03 pm
Thu September 20, 2012

Eastwood, Adams Keep Up With The 'Curve'

Mickey (Amy Adams), a successful lawyer, reluctantly hits the road to assist her father (Clint Eastwood), an Atlanta Braves baseball scout whose eyesight has begun to fail.
Keith Bernstein Warner Bros. Pictures

Predictable but appealing, Trouble with the Curve is the latest of Clint Eastwood's odes to old-fashioned attitudes and virtues. That the star neither wrote nor directed the movie in no way prevents it from being another political address from a man who considers terseness one of a hero's greatest qualities.

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Movie Reviews
3:03 pm
Thu September 20, 2012

Teen Rebellion, Written On The Body In '17 Girls'

Inspired by events in Gloucester, Mass., 17 Girls focuses on a gaggle of French high schoolers who make a pregnancy pact — in large part to exercise control over their lives.
Strand Releasing

The idea for 17 Girls, a woozy fever dream about a bunch of French provincial high-school girls who make a pact to get pregnant together, came from a similar, well-publicized 2008 event in Gloucester, Mass.

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Movie Reviews
3:03 pm
Thu September 20, 2012

A Modern 'Plague,' And The Heroes Who Tamed It

How to Survive a Plague features Peter Staley and others who fought to bring attention to the AIDS epidemic of the 1980s.
William Lucas Walker IFC Films

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 10:26 am

Late in How to Survive a Plague, a fair-minded, careful history of the AIDS-activist movement ACT UP, comes an affecting montage that bears witness to the triumph and the tragedy of the New York-based group's radical crusade — a push to get affordable treatment for a disease that, at its peak in the late 1980s, was killing millions worldwide.

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Movie Reviews
3:03 pm
Thu September 20, 2012

The Pangs And 'Perks' Of High School, Revisited

Sam (Emma Watson), Charlie (Logan Lerman) and Patrick (Ezra Miller) help each other through the lowest parts of high school in The Perks of Being a Wallflower.
John Bramley Summit Entertainment

Writer-director Stephen Chbosky's adaptation of his own 1999 novel, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, might just as aptly be titled The Pains of Being a Wallflower. This fable of early-'90s high school recounts (if it usually doesn't show) abundant trauma — including suicide, child sexual abuse, psychotic blackouts and a gay boy who's bashed by his own father.

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Author Interviews
12:46 pm
Thu September 20, 2012

A Close Look At Your Bills' 'Fine Print'

Originally published on Thu September 27, 2012 12:20 pm

Americans are paying high prices for poor quality Internet speeds — speeds that are now slower than in other countries, according to author David Cay Johnston. He says the U.S. ranks 29th in speed worldwide.

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