September, 2016 Archive

Women in Media vs. the Internet Troll

internet troll

What compels the internet troll to target women in media? In recent days, Leslie Jones’ website became a target of hackers who, in addition to exposing her driver’s license and passport photos, juxtaposed nude images of the Saturday Night Live star with photos of Harambe, the silverback gorilla who was shot and killed at the Cincinnati Zoo this summer. The cyber-attack on Jones brings to mind the memorable words of her Ghostbusters character: “I don’t know if it was a race thing or a lady thing, but I’m mad as hell.” In this case, it appears to be both. Author Celeste Ng tweeted, “What’s happening to Leslie Jones is sickening & incontrovertibly wrong. It’s rooted in...racism & misogyny & we need to root [it] out of society.” Research indicates that the internet troll does, in fact, disproportionately aim at women in general and women in media in particular. Heidi Stevens has worked at the Chicago Tribune since 1998        …read more

Has the Fantasy Football League Ruined NFL Fandom?

fantasy football league

As we perfect our starting lineups for our fantasy football leagues, we ask: Has fantasy changed NFL fans for better or for worse? It’s week 12 of the NFL season, and your team is taking the field with a potential playoff berth at stake. Carson Palmer, one of the best feel-good stories of the year, has reemerged as an elite quarterback. Now, if only Antonio Brown snags a few tosses for triple-digit yardage and a pair of touchdowns. But wait, Antonio Brown plays wide receiver for the Pittsburgh Steelers and Carson Palmer is the signal caller for the Arizona Cardinals. No, Palmer isn’t actually going to be throwing passes to Brown, but both of their successes are important to you. In the world of fantasy football league, the ways in which we support professional football players has gone through a drastic makeover in recent years. As a Cleveland Browns fan,        …read more

Oliver Stone’s Snowden Movie Follows ‘Patriot’ and ‘Traitor’

The new Snowden movie tackles the true, politically charged story of a polarizing whistleblower. In his IMDb bio, Oliver Stone is described as, above all, “a master of controversial subjects.” His most recent directorial offering doesn’t back down — in fact, it pushes the claim even further. Snowden, coming out September 16, is set to be a hit, with an all-star cast and one of the biggest stories of the decade. Following the life of Edward “Ed” Snowden, ex-CIA employee and NSA whistleblower, it stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt as the lead, alongside Zachary Quinto and Nicolas Cage in supporting roles. Born and raised in New York City, Stone has always taken the liberty to scrutinize the country he calls home. His movies push buttons and ask questions, with titles such as Platoon (1986), Salvador (1986) and Wall Street (1987) all being noted for their criticism of America’s military and economic history. Stone says,        …read more

Rob Zombie Remains Horror’s Renaissance Man

Rob Zombie films

The Zombie rises again. If art makes you feel something, then it can only be described as successful. Though with Rob Zombie films, what you feel will seldom be classified as “good.” Zombie’s sixth studio film, 31, is here. Though critics often level criticisms at Zombie for being too violent or nihilistic with subject matter, nobody can claim he isn’t doing things his own way. Much like Quentin Tarantino, Rob Zombie wears his inspirations shamelessly on his sleeve. The name of his original band, White Zombie, came from a Béla Lugosi film. His first outing as a director, House of 1000 Corpses, is basically The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (minus the chainsaw). His albums are littered with sound clips taken from classic horror films. The man himself is a walking horror mosaic. With monster face tattoos, snarly beard and bell-bottoms, he looks like he’s stepped off the screen of one of        …read more

People-Watching at an Erotic Art Theme Park (Definitely NSFW)

erotic art

So this is what happened when I visited Loveland, an erotic art sculpture park in Seoul, South Korea. You don’t visit the Louvre or Guggenheim Museum to watch people; you go for the art. Should you find yourself at a theme park dedicated to erotic art and sexuality, in all its provocative and hilarious forms, you might think the other tourists would be the last thing you’d want to see. I did not intend to people-watch at Loveland, an erotic art sculpture park that features 140 pieces by 20 graduates of Hongik University in Seoul, South Korea. Loveland aims to break traditional taboos surrounding sex, while allowing visitors to appreciate the natural beauty of sexuality. The erotic art on display at Loveland would make your grandmother blush — unless she’s like my grandmother, in which case, well, security would take an interest in her activities. Every part of me that        …read more

Mad Science for Singles: Huevos Rancheros Recipe

huevos rancheros recipe

This huevos rancheros recipe will make you say, ‘Holy guacamole!’ This basic huevos rancheros recipe has no avocado, but it’s just so scrumptious I have to say, “Holy guacamole!” Of course, you can add avocado with your own mad science experiments! Huevos Rancheros Recipe Spice up your day with this easy recipe! Corn or flour tortilla Can of refried beans Red or green enchilada sauce Shredded Monterey Jack cheese Fried egg Salsa In a lightly greased frying pan, warm tortilla. Warm refried beans in a saucepan. Move tortilla to plate and spread beans on it. Add a sprinkle of cheese. Fry egg and add to the tortilla. Top with enchilada sauce and some salsa. Yummy. This huevos rancheros recipe is so good you might keep eating it until all the canned ingredients are used up! MAD SCIENCE Um, it’s all up to you! Be sure to browse my current Mad        …read more

How ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ Elevated the Art

‘So You Think You Can Dance’ brought dance to mainstream prominence. From So You Think You Can Dance to Dancing with the Stars to America’s Best Dance Crew, the entertainment value of dance competition shows is endless. The unspoken message: You could move your body in the same way if you put your mind to it. British producers Nigel Lythgoe and Simon Fuller are behind the launch of the dance competition show So You Think You Can Dance. The summer reality show first premiered in July 2005, and this summer we saw the inspiring launch of So You Think You Can Dance: The Next Generation. SYTYCD took some time to find its footing, but the creative energy of the production team combined with talented dancers vying for the top prize ensured several Emmy awards and a place among the most watched shows of the summer. The format was picked up in        …read more

Venice Film Festival 2016 Features Must-See Movies from around the World

Venice Film Festival

From virtual reality Jesus to a land without sunlight, check out these intriguing cinematic offerings featured at the Venice Film Festival. Situated on a thin strip of land that shelters the main archipelago from the Adriatic Sea, the Venice Film Festival is itself a trusty island in the vast ocean of world cinema. Founded in 1932, it’s the oldest film festival in the world and shares the title of one of the “big three” along with Cannes and Berlin. Each year thousands of filmmakers, celebrities and movie buffs flock to the northern Italian city to debut their work, compete for prizes and generally immerse themselves in their shared obsession with the art of moving images. With the exception of a brief period of closure in the ’70s, the Venice Film Festival consistently redefined the face of cinema throughout the 20th century and into the 21st. For instance, the great Japanese        …read more

Why Underrated and Cancelled TV Shows Matter

cancelled TV shows

Cancelled TV shows and bubble shows are still relevant to our lives. Sitcoms are dying. Superheroes are rising. Television constantly changes due to audience numbers. When people discuss television, they tend to talk about the trending shows: Game of Thrones, The Big Bang Theory, The Walking Dead and anything by Marvel. Most don’t spend all day talking about a show that got cancelled. They might vent a while, but soon they’re back to discussing the popular show, the trend. People underestimate the power that cancelled TV shows can have. Small-screen history is filled with cancelled TV shows that only made a season or two, some barely making it a few episodes. The advancement of social media and streaming has created easier ways for audiences to find new shows. Social media helps fans market to friends, but what happens when a show can’t garner enough social media buzz? Whereas social media        …read more

Getting Gruesome

Author and filmmaker Gregory Lamberson on bringing his first book, ‘Johnny Gruesome,’ to the screen. How long would you hang on to a dream before you allowed it to die? In the winter of 1984, at the tender age of 19, I took a break from my wearying life as a movie theater manager and film school dropout in New York City and returned to my snowy hometown, the village of Fredonia, one hour south of Buffalo, ostensibly to write a movie screenplay. The fruit of my labor was titled Johnny Gruesome, an EC Comics–flavored revenge-from-the-grave tale populated by teenagers. At the time, slasher films inspired by Friday the 13th were still the rage in horror cinema: films with silent killers stalking young women while wearing expressionless masks. I wanted to inject a dose of supernatural into my character, who would be a teenage version of the classic monsters I’d        …read more