Arts/Life

Arts & Life
10:03 am
Mon April 30, 2012

A Bittersweet Goodbye To A Month Of Poetic Tweets

Writer and poet Holly Bass joins host Michel Martin to wrap up Tell Me More's poetry series, Muses and Metaphor. In celebration of National Poetry Month, listeners and friends of the program were invited to tweet poems no longer than 140 characters, via Twitter.

My Guilty Pleasure
4:36 am
Mon April 30, 2012

'The Magus': A Thrilling, Chilling Guilty Pleasure

cover detail

Originally published on Mon August 27, 2012 4:23 pm

Nick Dybek is the author of When Captain Flint Was Still a Good Man.

The sinister face sneering from the cover is reason enough to keep John Fowles' The Magus tucked discreetly away. Then there's the 600 or so pages inside, which are filled with pretentious riffs on psychoanalysis, metaphysics, fascism and the occult.

Read more
Author Interviews
1:37 am
Mon April 30, 2012

Caro's 'Passage of Power': LBJ's Political Genius

Keystone Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 30, 2012 8:26 am

Robert Caro writes obsessively about power. Fittingly, it's Lyndon Johnson — catapulted suddenly into the presidency "in the crack of a gunshot" — who consumes him.

The Passage of Power, the fourth volume of Caro's massive biography of Lyndon Johnson, is released this week. Caro has dedicated decades to meticulously researching Johnson's life, and the previous books in the series have been almost universally hailed as a significant achievement in American letters.

Read more
Author Interviews
1:33 am
Mon April 30, 2012

Extremism In Congress: 'Even Worse Than It Looks'?

Mladen Antonov Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 30, 2012 8:53 am

Congressional scholars Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein are no strangers to D.C. politics. The two of them have been in Washington for more than 40 years — and they're renowned for their carefully nonpartisan positions.

But now, they say, Congress is more dysfunctional than it has been since the Civil War, and they aren't hesitating to point a finger at who they think is to blame.

Read more
Books
3:09 pm
Sun April 29, 2012

Three-Minute Fiction Update: Judge's Favorites

Originally published on Sun April 29, 2012 3:48 pm

Weekends on All Things Considered host Guy Raz checks-in with Three-Minute Fiction judge Luis Alberto Urrea to hear how the reading process is going and to hear some of his favorite stories thus far.

Author Interviews
3:09 pm
Sun April 29, 2012

'Teachers Make' A Difference, What About You?

iStockPhoto.com

Originally published on Wed May 9, 2012 8:45 am

Teaching, once a revered profession, has of late been much maligned. Teachers are accused of laziness and greed. They're blamed for low test scores, and a general decline in the nation's educational standing. Most people believe their work day is short and their vacations are long. But teachers also have their defenders — perhaps none so passionate as Taylor Mali.

Read more
Author Interviews
8:02 am
Sun April 29, 2012

Single-Handedly Pitching Through An 'Imperfect' Life

Originally published on Mon April 30, 2012 10:31 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

In the history of Major League Baseball, one of the most emotional moments came in the summer of 1993. The week didn't begin well for New York Yankees pitcher Jim Abbott. He was pitching terribly against the Cleveland Indians. His manager took him out, so...

JIM ABBOTT: I ripped off my Yankee jersey, put on my running shorts and shirt and shoes. And I left the stadium. I just went for a long kind of get-it-out run, as far and as fast as I could, to kind of get rid of some of the anger and disappointment of that start.

Read more
Games & Humor
5:46 am
Sun April 29, 2012

Blasts From The Past: The Art Of Video Games

The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, 2006, Shigeru Miyamoto, Executive Producer; Eiji Aonuma, Director; Satoru Takizawa, Art Director; Eiji Aonuma, Satoru Iwata, Producers, Nintendo Wii, Nintendo of America, Inc.
Smithsonian American Art Museum

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 8:50 am

Hopper, Hockney, Lichtenstein. Among these great artists featured in the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C., you'll now find Lara Croft and Earthworm Jim.

Read more
Monkey See
5:38 am
Sun April 29, 2012

Chris Colfer Goes From 'Glee' Singer To 'Struck' Screenwriter

Chris Colfer, writer and star of Struck By Lightning, at the Tribeca Film Festival, where the film is playing.
Larry Busacca Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 30, 2012 9:39 am

Chris Colfer, one of the stars of the hit TV show Glee, is known for his portrayal of Kurt, a confident and openly gay high school student (who also possesses pipes like a diva). In the new film Struck By Lightning, which Colfer wrote, he plays a very different character: Carson Phillips, an ambitious high school student who starts a literary magazine in order to get into Northwestern University. The character is arrogant and not exactly well-liked, so how does he collect submissions? By blackmailing the popular kids, of course.

Read more
Author Interviews
4:32 am
Sun April 29, 2012

'Hot Dog' Meets 'Bun': Famous Food Discoveries

iStockPhoto.com

Originally published on Mon April 30, 2012 10:31 am

If you're watching a sports game at home, at a bar or at an arena, what better way to enjoy it than with some nachos, pretzels or hot dogs?

As a former baseball player, Josh Chetwynd knows a thing or two about stadium grub. His new book, How the Hot Dog Found Its Bun: Accidental Discoveries and Unexpected Inspirations That Shape What We Eat and Drink, features 75 short essays that trace the history of popular food and dispel common misconceptions.

Read more
Sunday Puzzle
10:03 pm
Sat April 28, 2012

To Cross This Puzzle Safely, Look Left And Right

NPR Graphic

Originally published on Sat May 12, 2012 4:11 pm

On-Air Challenge: Every answer today is a familiar three-word phrase in which the second word is "and" and the first word starts with the letter L. You'll be given the last word of the phrase, and you must identify the first word, starting with "L." For example, given "master," the answer would be "lord," as in "lord and master."

Read more
Monkey See
7:56 am
Sat April 28, 2012

My '70s Show — Remembering 'Ecotopia' Author Ernest Callenbach

Sustainability advocate and author Ernest Callenbach in 2005.
Courtesy Heyday Books

There was news this week that Ernest "Chick" Callenbach had died. His 1975 cult-classic, Ecotopia, was beloved by environmentalists and science fiction fans. Originally self-published, it went on to sell more than a million copies in many languages. The utopian novel, which imagined a new nation made up of Northern California, Oregon and Washington state, is told from the point of view of a visiting reporter from the United States.

Read more
Movies
4:13 am
Sat April 28, 2012

A Creative Collaboration With A 'Darling Companion'

Beth (Diane Keaton) and her daughter (Elisabeth Moss) rescue an injured dog from the side of the highway. Beth's husband (Kevin Kline) later loses the beloved pet, an event co-writer Meg Kasdan says is inspired by a real-life incident.
Wilson Webb Sony Pictures Classics

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 10:22 am

Lawrence Kasdan became famous for writing the blockbusters The Empire Strikes Back and Raiders of the Lost Ark, but he went on to a successful directing career with high-profile films like Body Heat, The Big Chill and Grand Canyon.

His latest film, and his first in nine years, is Darling Companion, which Kasdan wrote with his wife, Meg. The film was her idea.

Read more
Author Interviews
4:04 am
Sat April 28, 2012

'The Art Of The Sale': Life's A Pitch

iStockphoto

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 10:22 am

Salesmen are rarely heroic figures in American culture. They're often shown as slick, unscrupulous charlatans like Ricky Roma in David Mamet's play Glengarry Glen Ross. And then there are sad, defeated characters like Willy Loman in Death Of A Salesman, who shortly before taking his life says, "After all the highways, and the trains, and the appointments, and the years, you end up worth more dead than alive."

Yet sales drive the economy. The cleverest invention or product will disappear — creating no income, no employment — unless someone can sell it.

Read more
Movie Interviews
4:04 am
Sat April 28, 2012

Michelle Yeoh: Portraying An Icon In 'The Lady'

Michelle Yeoh plays pro-democracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi in The Lady. Yeoh says it was important that the film portrayed Suu Kyi's struggles realistically, including how her 15-year house arrest kept her from her husband and sons.
Cohen Media Group

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 10:22 am

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told reporters at a recent film premiere that she'd told Aung San Suu Kyi that she was moving from being an icon to being a politician.

The film Clinton saw is The Lady, starring Michelle Yeoh as the pro-democracy activist who spent 15 years under house arrest in Myanmar (also known as Burma), and who won the Nobel Peace Prize before being freed in 2010.

Read more
Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
1:55 am
Sat April 28, 2012

Director Barry Sonnenfeld Plays Not My Job

Alexandre Meneghini AP

Originally published on Fri May 4, 2012 11:26 pm

Barry Sonnenfeld either directed or shot some of the best movies of the '80s and '90s. He was the cinematographer on the Coen Brother's first movies and directed the Men in Black movies and Get Shorty, among other works of dark genius. His movie Men in Black III is coming out in May.

He plays a game called "Men in White," where he will answer three questions about people who play cricket.

Read more
Monkey See
11:59 pm
Fri April 27, 2012

Garry Marshall On His 'Happy Days'

Director Garry Marshall and sister, actress-director Penny Marshall, seen here in 2004 when she received her star on the Walk Of Fame.
Vince Bucci Getty Images

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 10:22 am

Director Garry Marshall has worked on so much popular comedy in his career — television like Happy Days and The Odd Couple, movies like Pretty Woman and Beaches — that something he's done has probably made you laugh. And now he's written a memoir called, fittingly, My Happy Days In Hollywood: A Memoir.

Read more
Author Interviews
4:26 pm
Fri April 27, 2012

Paul Krugman's Prescription For A 'Depression'

Paul Krugman is a columnist for The New York Times. His previous books include The Great Unraveling and The Conscience Of A Liberal.
Fred R. Conrad The New York Times

In his new book, End This Depression Now! Paul Krugman states that the U.S. is in the throes of a depression — not merely an economic crisis. The New York Times columnist and Nobel laureate argues that Keynesian economics got us out of a much worse depression in the 1930s, so if we were to follow Keynesian prescriptions now, we could get out of this one too.

Read more
Poetry
3:32 pm
Fri April 27, 2012

NewsPoet: Monica Youn Writes The Day In Verse

Monica Youn visits NPR headquarters in Washington on Friday.
Doriane Raiman NPR

Originally published on Wed July 25, 2012 9:20 am

Today at All Things Considered, we continue a project we're calling NewsPoet. Each month, we bring in a poet to spend time in the newsroom — and at the end of the day, to compose a poem reflecting on the day's stories.

Read more
Arts & Life
9:59 am
Fri April 27, 2012

School Teacher Tweets On Cycle Of Life

As part of Tell Me More's series for National Poetry Month, host Michel Martin shares a poetic tweet from Jessica Mogis of Omaha, Nebraska. She's a Montessori school teacher and a recording studio manager. Listeners are invited to tweet original poems of 140 characters or less to #TMMPoetry.

Pop Culture
9:59 am
Fri April 27, 2012

Shakira Shuts Out J-Lo At Latin Billboard

The hottest stars of Latin music strutted down the red carpet last night in South Florida, for the annual Billboard Latin Music Awards. Host Michel Martin checks in with NPR Music's Alt.Latino co-host Jasmine Garsd to take a look at the winners, the losers, and the surprising snubs.

Monkey See
9:20 am
Fri April 27, 2012

Pop Culture Happy Hour: 'Veep' Talk And Spoilery 'Cabin In The Woods' Chatter

This week on Pop Culture Happy Hour, the old gang is back together to tackle a new comedy, just like the guest panel did last week: Last week, it was Girls; this week, it's the less fussed over Veep, starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus. We'll talk about how we responded to her performance, the writing (from the guys behind the great In The Loop), and the depiction of politics.

Read more
Movie Reviews
9:20 am
Fri April 27, 2012

'Bernie': Death Becomes Her, He Decided

Bernie Tiede (Jack Black), a sweet undertaker's assistant beloved by his small East Texas community, befriends a prickly and controlling widow (Shirley MacLaine). Her generosity comes with so many strings that he soon finds his almost inexhaustible kindness stretched to the limit.
Deana Newcomb Millennium Entertainment

Originally published on Fri April 27, 2012 4:07 pm

If there is a dream team in modern American comedies, it might just be Richard Linklater and Jack Black. The two haven't worked together since 2003's The School of Rock — a film that bore all the hallmarks of successful collaboration — and since then Black, aside from a passable turn in King Kong, has been confined mainly to guest spots on television comedies and voice work in big-screen animation.

Read more
TED Radio Hour
7:54 am
Fri April 27, 2012

What Makes Us Happy?

"Most animals learn by trial and error. There's just one problem: error." — Dan Gilbert
Asa Mathat TED

Originally published on Fri May 25, 2012 7:59 am

Part 3 of the TED Radio Hour episode Our Buggy Brain

Read more
TED Radio Hour
7:54 am
Fri April 27, 2012

Why Do We Cheat?

"The amount of people who are willing to cheat a little bit is just incredible." — Dan Ariely
James Duncan Davidson TED

Originally published on Fri May 25, 2012 7:58 am

Part 1 of the TED Radio Hour episode Our Buggy Brain

Read more
Movie Reviews
6:53 am
Fri April 27, 2012

An 'Engagement' Going Nowhere, But Endearingly So

When Violet (Emily Blunt) is accepted to a postdoctoral program at the University of Michigan, she and her fiance, Tom (Jason Segel), postpone their wedding plans — along with Tom's career as a chef — and move from San Francisco to Ann Arbor.
Universal Pictures

We start where most movies end: A happy city-slicker couple pledge to spend the rest of their lives together, as a famous American landmark twinkles behind them.

From then on, Nicholas Stoller's weird, endearingly messy The Five-Year Engagement embarks on an uncharted circular voyage. Its two wistful, determined leads — Emily Blunt as grad student Violet and Jason Segel as sous-chef Tom — are caught in a Sisyphean premarital loop.

Read more
Author Interviews
6:42 am
Fri April 27, 2012

Tracing The Divides In The War 'To End All Wars'

Originally published on Fri April 27, 2012 12:51 pm

This interview was originally broadcast on August 11, 2011. To End All Wars is now available in paperback.

The human cost of World War I was enormous. More than 9 million soldiers and an estimated 12 million civilians died in the four-year-long conflict, which also left 21 million military men wounded.

Read more
Theater
12:41 am
Fri April 27, 2012

Managing The Gershwins' Lucrative Musical Legacy

In Nice Work If You Can Get It, Matthew Broderick plays Jimmy Winter, a New York playboy of the Prohibition era. The show is at the Imperial Theatre.
Joan Marcus Boneau/Bryan-Brown

Originally published on Fri April 27, 2012 5:24 am

In the 1920s, it wasn't uncommon for the Gershwin Brothers — composer George and lyricist Ira — to have two shows running on Broadway at the same time. What's surprising is that this season, 75 years after George's death, it's happening again, with Porgy and Bess and Nice Work If You Can Get It.

It's no coincidence: Both shows were generated by the Gershwin estates, the nieces, nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews charged with looking after a legacy that's not only highly loved, but immensely lucrative — a multimillion-dollar-a-year responsibility.

Read more
You Must Read This
3:14 pm
Thu April 26, 2012

Something Wicked: A Haunting Must Read

Seth Grahame-Smith is the author of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.
Matthew Rudenberg

Originally published on Thu April 26, 2012 4:27 pm

Seth Grahame-Smith is the author of Unholy Night.

I know it's strange to be thinking about October right now, but whenever I write, in a way that's always where I am. Growing up in Connecticut, it always held a special place in my heart — "a rare month for boys," as Ray Bradbury begins Something Wicked This Way Comes.

Read more
Movie Reviews
3:08 pm
Thu April 26, 2012

'Headhunters': The Caper Flick, Raised To A Fine Art

Corporate headhunter Roger Brown (Aksel Hennie) has a lucrative if less-than-legal sideline in fine art — until he crosses the wrong man.
Magnet Releasing

Originally published on Fri April 27, 2012 4:05 pm

At the beginning of the Norwegian thriller Headhunters, Roger Brown (Aksel Hennie) will likely strike you as just about the cockiest insecure guy you've ever met.

Smirking as he pads around his pristine, glass-walled home in boxer shorts, he swirls a heart into the foam on the coffee he's taking to his gorgeous, blond and naked wife (former model Synnove Macody Lund) in their enormous open shower. Then as she moves from the streaming water to kiss him, he has to lean up, because she's half a head taller than he is.

Read more

Pages