Alex Berenson scores a knock-out

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Former New York Times reporter Alex Berenson blends fact and fiction so seamlessly in his new thriller, “The Midnight House” (Putnam), that you get the feeling you are learning how things really work in the intelligence community. Berenson’s protagonist John Wells is a CIA agent who believes in his country — and who knows that […] [Read More]
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‘Eclectic Society’: Racism in 1963 Connecticut

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The Walnut Street Theatre in Philadelphia isn’t known for doing volatile new material — it has the world’s largest subscription audience (56,000) and tends to present solid, middle-of-the-road musicals and plays. So, you could feel the tension in the audience at Sunday afternoon’s performance of the world premiere production of “The Eclectic Society,” an ambitious […] [Read More]
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The movie that changed everything — ‘Psycho’

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Those who weren’t around when the Alfred Hitchcock picture, “Psycho,” opened in 1960 have no idea of the revolutionary impact it had on the movie business. Hitchcock put sex and violence front and center in a Hollywood film for the first time. From that moment on, moviemakers were given license to keep upping the ante. By […] [Read More]
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Jackie Collins: she is her own genre

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 How’s this for an attention-grabbing opening?: “Belle Svetlana surveyed her nude image in a full-length mirror, readying herself for a thirty-thousand-dollar-an-hour sexual encounter with the fifteen-year-old son of an Arab oil tycoon.” Yes, Jackie Collins has a new novel out — “Poor Little Bitch Girl” (St. Martin’s) — and it is her usual, all-but-irresistible, up-to-the-minute […] [Read More]
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‘The Last New Yorker’: when cities change and people don’t

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What a treat it is to see veteran character actor Dominic Chianese given the opportunity to carry the vibrant new independent film, “The Last New Yorker.” The collaboration between writer Adam Forgash and director Harvey Wang is steeped in affection for New York City and the struggles of aging people to survive there. The film […] [Read More]
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The best ‘Glass Menagerie’ of our time returns

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The fantastic Gordon Edelstein staging of “The Glass Menagerie” at Long Wharf Theatre last season is being revisited in Manhattan starting March 5 at the Laura Pels Theatre where it is set to run through May 30. The director and his cast took a break from rehearsal today for a photo op (above)  sponsored by Roundabout […] [Read More]
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Are the 1930s the past and the future?

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Just a few years ago, the gripping theater piece “Decade at a Glance” by Joan Evans would probably have felt harrowing but distant. After all, Evans uses the Great Depression era photos of Dorothea Lange and Walker Evans (below) as the starting point for a theatrical examination of the impact of the financial apocalypse on […] [Read More]
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‘Vicious Kind’: Men talking dirty with tears in their eyes

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“The Vicious Kind” is another one of the dozens — hundreds? — of recent American independent films that barely qualifies as a “movie,” in the sense of something that gets seen in a significant number of theaters. The picture was shot in Norfolk, Connecticut, and was screened at last year’s Sundance Film Festival, but it […] [Read More]
Categories: General