Your Weekend: A Selective Guide

Movies: “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” is expected to have a $425-million opening weekend worldwide, so if you’re turning up your nose, I’ve got news for ya: they don’t need your business. TV/Streaming: I’m almost done with “The Crown” and I’m sorry to say it hasn’t recovered much after the blah three opening episodes. “Last Tango in Halifax” has a holiday special on Sunday. Music: This is truly the only Christmas recording I love — of course, I’m talking about Steve and Eydie. To rid my mind of holiday jingles I often turn to Megadeth. Books: If you’re looking for an author to binge on this vacation season, I suggest Viet Thanh Nguyen. His novel “The Sympathizers” is especially wonderful. Sports: Now that my Eagles are without a star quarterback, I’m watching the fading Kansas City Chiefs and their appealing tight end, Travis Kelce. Finally: Whether you acknowledge it or not, your mortality clock is clicking. Behave accordingly.

Jackman, Efron: “Crosswalk: The Musical”

Catnip for all you show queens out there.

“Ocean’s 8”: I Like The Poster But…

…the plot sounds pretty lame: George Clooney‘s Danny Ocean has an “estranged” sister named Debbie (Sandra Bullock) and so, being competitive and all, she’s decided to mastermind her own audacious heist, only this time with the assistance of seven lady thieves (Cate Blanchett, Helena Bonham Carter, Anne Hathaway, Rihanna, Mindy Kaling, Sarah Paulson, Awkwafina) with the usual eccentric character traits. The plan is to rip off something of value (presumably not cash) from Debbie’s ex-boyfriend (Damian Lewis) on the night of Manhattan’s annual Met Gala. Oh, brother. And, by the way, Clooney’s not in the movie.

Iggy And Jarvis Cover Nick Cave Song

Iggy Pop and Jarvis Cocker released a rumbling cover of Nick Cave’s “Red Right Hand” this week. The song is the theme for the fourth season of the BBC series Peaky Blinders, which debuted November 15th.

New Avedon Book: A Few Thoughts

Huff Post has posted my short review of “Something Personal,” a new book about the photographer Richard Avedon. First graf: ‘In the spring of 1993, I was summoned to meet the photographer Richard Avedon at his studio, a converted carriage house on New York’s Upper East Side. Then the cultural editor of The New Yorker, I had been asked by Tina Brown, the editor-in-chief, to help scare up subjects for Avedon, who the previous year had been named the first staff photographer in the magazine’s history. The task was slightly absurd, as Avedon, though nearing seventy, still had his antennae very much alert. If his professional enthusiasms were very public, his private ones were often hidden. A little like Calvin Klein and Gianni Versace, two of Avedon’s biggest clients in that era, the photographer’s intimate life with men was not fully out.’

Roy Jones Appeared In “Mockingbird”

According to Broadway World: ‘Newly elected Alabama Senator Doug Jones has a theatrical past. Jones appeared as the Judge in a production of To Kill A Mockingbird in Birmingham, AL in 2013. The production was staged by The Virginia Samford Theatre. The production was staged for the 50th Anniversary commemoration of the Civil Rights Movement. It was directed by Jack Mann, and the role of Atticus Finch was played by Rodney Clark. All performances featured jurors selected from eight Birmingham law firms. Mary Badham, who played Scout in the award-winning film attended Read more »

Does “Billboards” Absolve Racism?

“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” has received a lot of love this week from the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) and from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (Golden Globes). But Ira Madison III isn’t enamored: ‘In 2006, Paul Haggis’ awful movie about racism that nevertheless made white people feel good about racism won Best Picture at the Academy Awards. You might recall this film. It was Crash. As this year’s awards season hurdles forward, it’s become clear that Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri might just end up the next Crash. The film stars Sam Rockwell as a violent and racist cop who finds Read more »