Left Behind: It’s as Bad as We Feared


Left Behind is an awful movie. I expected it to be awful on the theological level; I was hoping it wouldn’t be awful on an entertainment level. Unfortunately it is both.First, the film. If you have lived on the East or West Coast for the last 20 years, or are Roman Catholic, you may not know how the Left Behind story goes. But unfortunately for the rest of us, many of the details have trickled down even if we have assiduously avoided this evangelical book/movie/then-another-movie j … [Read more...]

Summer Silliness: Sharknado 2 & Black Jesus


I never thought I’d say this, but thank God for cable television. As a Basic Cable family, we hold on to the Box because it lets us watch Comedy Central, Rachel Maddow, and the occasional broadcast for my hometown sports teams, the Reds and the Bengals. Most of the rest is wall-to-wall reality TV – nothing but “Redneck Vacation” and “Pawn Stars” as far as the eye can see.But something about the summer makes Cable throw caution to the wind, and the result is some pretty ridiculously wonderful … [Read more...]

The Sixties Were Groovy — But So Is Today

Open the door

Last week, my parents celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. This was a beautiful moment for my family as we gathered with friends in our adopted home in Northern Kentucky. By “adopted” I mean our extended family mostly lives in and around the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia, where my mom grew up and my parents met. I’m the only member of my immediate family that was born in the Bluegrass State. My parents are transplanted Southerners in a border state.The fun part for me as a student of cu … [Read more...]

Notes on ‘Godzilla’

The highlight of any Godzilla film.

For a good full review of the film, see Andrew O’Heir on Salon.com1.) Sometimes whether or not you like a movie may have to do with whether you were set up to like it, like if you’re part of the demographic the movie is pitched to. Sometimes, it just takes a good word from a critic. This is how I came to like Godzilla. Andrew O’Heir’s review set me up to be patient with the narrative the filmmakers wanted to unspool in this film. So I was prepared when three quarters of the film was about a n … [Read more...]

The Apotheosis of Grunge: the Nirvana Exhibit at Seattle’s Experience Music Project


In Seattle this past weekend, I had the opportunity to take in the Experience Music Project’s Nirvana exhibit. The show at Microsoft founder Paul Allen’s personal rock-n-roll hall of fame draws connections between the iconic grunge band and the blossoming of the Seattle sound in the late 80’s and early 90’s. It marks the 25th anniversary of Nirvana’s first album and the 20th anniversary of Kurt Cobain’s death.At one particular moment in the exhibit I was struck by a spark of a memory while st … [Read more...]

Cross-Watching ‘Looking’ and ‘Tales of the City’


Perhaps it’s fitting for a television show located in San Francisco that such a fault line should have formed through the HBO series Looking. As the first extended gay male drama on a mainstream channel since the early aughts’ Queer as Folk, the show was bound to be a lightning rod. But where QAF was controversial for its mere existence, not to mention its graphic portrayal of gay sex, Looking is creating a different kind of controversy. Perhaps, wonder viewers, the gay lives in the show are too … [Read more...]

The Grammy Wedding: ‘Same Love,’ Different Interpretations

The Wedding Party.

Last night, we were treated to one of the stranger spectacles in awards show history, even taking into account Miley Cyrus’ twerking on the MTV Video Music Awards last fall. This was a mass wedding of gay and straight couples, presided over by Queen Latifah, with music supplied by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, Mary Lambert, and Madonna. It’s a strange commentary on equality when you can say same-sex couples are now “free” to participate in legally-binding rituals every bit as weird as the straight m … [Read more...]

August: Osage County: Family Ties that Bind–and Gag

Puke et Veritas: things get a little too real in the Weston household.

August: Osage County is the kind of drama that theater critics used to accuse gay men of writing in order to let out their aggressions against straight people. According to mid-20th century conspiracy theories, crafters of dysfunctional family dramas like Edward Albee and Tennessee Williams wrote of Martha and George, Blanche Dubois and Big Daddy to process their own unhealthy gay/family relationships, projecting their self-loathing onto “innocent” heterosexuals. Here we have a film, based on Tra … [Read more...]