Arts

8:29am

Fri March 22, 2013
The Two-Way

Chinua Achebe, Nigerian Author Of 'Things Fall Apart,' Dies

Originally published on Fri March 22, 2013 1:45 pm

Nigerian writer Chinua Achebe in January 2009.
Abayomi Adeshida AFP/Getty Images

NPR's Ofeibea Quist-Arcton reports from Lagos, Nigeria, on the death of one of Africa's greatest contemporary writers. Quoting his publisher, AP, CNN, and the BBC are reporting Chinua Achebe has died.

Chinua Achebe who taught at colleges in the United States made literary history with his 1958 best-seller Things Fall Apart, a sobering tale about Nigeria at the beginning of its colonization.

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7:54am

Fri March 22, 2013
The Two-Way

Book News: Newly Found Oscar Wilde Letter: 'Sacrifice For Your Art'

Originally published on Fri March 22, 2013 9:05 am

Playwright Oscar Wilde poses in an 1882 photo.
New York Public Library, Sarony ASSOCIATED PRESS

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

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12:03am

Fri March 22, 2013
Movie Interviews

Tina Fey, Movie Star? Not Quite Yet, She Says

Originally published on Fri March 22, 2013 10:55 am

Tina Fey stars as Princeton University admissions counselor Portia Nathan in the new comedy Admission. Fey says the movie's frankly manic depiction of the college application melee appealed to her.
David Lee Focus Features

Writer, actor and producer Tina Fey stars in a new movie out today called Admission, a film that's nominally about getting into college. Fey plays an admissions officer at Princeton University, one of those diligent bureaucrats who cull thousands of applications in search of a small cadre of brilliant young people who will be the freshman class.

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7:19pm

Thu March 21, 2013
Movie Reviews

'Olympus Has Fallen' (Into Cold-War Traps)

Mike Banning (Gerard Butler) and U.S. President Ben Asher (Aaron Eckhart) flee a destroyed White House in the military-political thriller Olympus Has Fallen.
FilmDistrict

It's probably best not to think of Olympus Has Fallen as a movie released in 2013. Antoine Fuqua's film — about a band of North Koreans who invade the White House — feels from start to finish like a throwback to the action cinema and military thrillers of decades past.

It's like an ersatz reproduction of an archaeological relic, if the archaeologists in question had just thrown together a bunch of random artifacts from different eras, taken a blurry photograph and then asked someone to make an accurate model based only on their memory of that photograph.

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7:16pm

Thu March 21, 2013
Ask Me Another

Movie Favorites: Act II

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 11:17 am

We continue the hour of our favorite games about the silver screen. Can you think of a movie that does not star Michael Caine, Donald Sutherland, or Anthony Hopkins? Go on, name one; or just play along with "He Was In That?" Then guess the titles of mashed-up movie plots in "Double Feature." Plus, it seems even movie monsters have a hard time finding love — so we make Godzilla an online dating profile in a game called "E-Horror-Mony." Join host Ophira Eisenberg and house musician Jonathan Coulton as they lead the show.

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7:16pm

Thu March 21, 2013
Ask Me Another

Movie Favorites: Act III

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 11:16 am

It's the final act of Ask Me Another's collection of favorite movie games. Find out what gets lost in translation when American movies go global. We wonder if it's true what they say: is there really no such thing as an original idea? And we wrap things up by examining films with hilarious subtitles. Air Bud: Golden Receiver, anyone? Ophira Eisenberg and puzzle gurus Art Chung and Will Hines take you through "Movies In Other Languages," "All Movies Are The Same" and "Electric Boogaloo."

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7:16pm

Thu March 21, 2013
Ask Me Another

Movie Favorites: Act I

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 11:15 am

Ask Me Another goes Hollywood with an hour of games and puzzles inspired by Tinseltown. Ever think that Gone With the Wind should really be a TV series, and each episode should start with Rhett, Scarlett and friends at a coffee shop? If so, play along as host Ophira Eisenberg leads "Small Screen Adaptation." Plus, we rework some movie theme songs in the style of Randy Newman in "Let's Get Randy," with a cameo appearance by music duo Paul and Storm.

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7:03pm

Thu March 21, 2013
Movie Reviews

A 'Hunky Dory' High School Musical

Free-spirited drama teacher Viv (Minnie Driver) hopes to use a summer musical production of The Tempest to give her students a chance to express themselves in Hunky Dory.
Variance Films

Set in a seaside town in Wales in the summer of 1976 — the U.K.'s warmest summer on record — Hunky Dory follows the passion project of Vivienne (Minnie Driver), a free-spirited high school teacher who wants her senior students to stage an unconventional production of The Tempest that David Bowie would be proud of. When Viv promises contemporary music and a freer classroom environment, the students are sold. That is, until the last two weeks of school arrive.

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6:37pm

Thu March 21, 2013
Movie Reviews

'The Croods': 3-D Cartoon Cavemen For The Whole Family

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 7:17 pm

The prehistoric family in The Croods takes a visually stunning but comically tired road trip in the latest outing from DreamWorks Animation.
20th Century Fox

The makers of the animated Vikings comedy How to Train Your Dragon have come up with an animated caveman comedy that might as well be titled How to Train Your Father. Instead, they've called it The Croods, and centered it on a cavegirl named Eep (Emma Stone) who has a dad she sees — entirely accurately, let's note — as a knuckle-dragging Neanderthal.

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5:08pm

Thu March 21, 2013
Movie Reviews

An 'Admission' That Moms Might Not Know Best

High-strung Princeton University admissions counselor Portia (Tina Fey) finds old love — and a surrendered child — when she visits the Vermont prep school where old schoolmate John (Paul Rudd) is a teacher.
David Lee Focus Features

Half an hour into Paul Weitz's new comedy, Admission, it dawned on me that I was watching an Americanized About a Boy -- which admittedly was also directed by Weitz. Both movies are adapted from other people's novels; both cobble together families out of the waifs and strays of modern life.

But where About a Boy was both funny and wise about urban alienation, Admission settles for skin deep.

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