"I wrote 63 songs this year. They're all about Jeter." Just kidding. The game we love, the players we hate, and more.

Culture and Criticism

From Norman Mailer to Wendy Pepper — everything on film, TV, books, music, and snacks (shut up, raisins), plus the Girls' Bike Club.

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Stories, True and Otherwise

Monologues, travelogues, fiction, and fart humor. And hens. Don't forget the hens.

The Vine

The Tomato Nation advice column addresses your questions on etiquette, grammar, romance, and pet misbehavior. Ask The Readers about books or fashion today!

25/31: Midnight in Paris
December 26, 2011 · 10 Comments
25/31: <I>Midnight in Paris</I>

Woody Allen stand-ins work best when played by Woody Allen himself. Allen's voice is so distinctive, and his heroes generally so him despite cosmetic name changes (Alvy Singer, Larry Lipton), that in other hands the …

24/31: Win Win
December 26, 2011 · 7 Comments
24/31: <I>Win Win</I>

Suburban-Jersey lawyer Mike Flaherty (Paul Giamatti), who seems to represent seniors exclusively, is floundering. The office needs a new boiler and a new toilet, a dead tree on his front lawn needs removing, he's got …

23/31: Kansas City
December 25, 2011 · 8 Comments
23/31: <I>Kansas City</I>

Watching Kansas City for the plot is probably not the best way to enjoy the film, for two reasons. The first is that the plot is primarily an excuse to take the audience on an …

The Vine: December 23, 2011
December 23, 2011 · 45 Comments
The Vine: December 23, 2011

I have a culinary question for the readers. My diet is probably around 25% popcorn. I'm shoving fistfuls of it in my mouth for dinner at least three times a week. I make it on the stove …

22/31: The Woodmans
December 22, 2011 · 4 Comments
22/31: <I>The Woodmans</I>

The Woodmans is a really interesting movie and also an uncomfortable mess, much like one of its subjects, and I don't quite know how to go about reviewing it, or even describing how I reacted …

21/31: Albert Nobbs
December 21, 2011 · 7 Comments
21/31: <I>Albert Nobbs</I>

Albert Nobbs has two big secrets. One is that he's socking away money, farthing by painstaking farthing, under a floorboard in the servant's quarters, at the hotel where he works as a butler.
The other, and …

The Vine: December 21, 2011
December 21, 2011 · 3 Comments
The Vine: December 21, 2011

This is one of those "some friendships have a lifespan" problems, I suppose. Years ago, when I was at secondary school, I was friends with L. We were really close, but being teenagers we fell …

20/31: The Artist
December 21, 2011 · 6 Comments
20/31: <I>The Artist</I>

My esteemed colleague Couch Baron, blowing off The Artist with the combined force and economy of that air-puff glaucoma test you get at the eye doctor, described the film as, among other things, "so up …

19/31: Coriolanus
December 20, 2011 · 4 Comments
19/31: <I>Coriolanus</I>

Adaptations of Shakespeare: not for me. In fact, Shakespeare's plays, page or stage: not for me. Shakespeare's verse is a different story, and yes, I know he wrote the plays in verse, and yes, I…know. …

18/31: Incident at Oglala: The Leonard Peltier Story
December 19, 2011 · 2 Comments
18/31: <I>Incident at Oglala: The Leonard Peltier Story</I>

John Douglas has a line in The Cases That Haunt Us where he's wrapping up the Lindbergh case, and after reviewing all the evidence, disputed and otherwise, he's like, "So, did Hauptmann do it? I …