icymi: our idiot brother

Our Idiot Brother is one of those movies that had pretty good reviews and an appealing cast, and I just never got around to seeing when it was out in theaters. partly for its R rating — it's always harder for me to see R movies on my own — arranging to go without the kid can sometimes be difficult or just plain expensive. So I was glad to get an opportunity to catch up with the movie on Netflix the other day, and even happier when it turned out to be much better than I had expected ....more

a few words about the emmy awards

I really just tuned in for Billy Crystal's tribute to Robin Williams. The red carpet was redder than usual, as the bright bold color showed up again and again on actresses. There were a few surprises, especially Benedict Cumberbatch and Sherlock winning three Emmys ....more

vmas: ladies' night

MTV is not even close to being the arbiter of what's hot in music or pop culture anymore, but it still puts on a pretty good awards show. Maybe because the emphasis is in the right place, as the show was definitely more about the performances than the awards. Does anyone, except the moon man recipient, really care about who wins what or who was nominated? ...more

favorite song friday: awesome mix vol. 1

The runaway film hit of the summer, Guardians of The Galaxy, didn't just introduce the coolest talking tree ever and make comic book movies cool again, but it also spawned a hit soundtrack of decades-old jukebox hits, "Awesome Mix Vol. 1": 1. Blue Swede – "Hooked on a Feeling"2 ....more

throwback thursday: star wars, summer of '77

In the summer of 1977 the biggest movie of the summer was Star Wars. I had been eagerly tracking the progress of the film's opening through various fan magazines, and was not disappointed when we finally went to see it, on Long Beach Island (at a theater in Beach Haven, which alas, is no more). My family were all big science-fiction fans and loved the movie, from the corny crawl-titles at the start to the space battle at the end ....more

guardians of the galaxy

Guardians of the Galaxy...more

the love of trees in movies — we are groot!

Groot was such a terrific character in Guardians of the Galaxy. Even with his many variations on his one line of dialogue, "I am Groot!", he was able to become lovable and memorable. How did a walking, talking tree capture viewers hearts? ...more

back to school

Fifth grade ?!?Time sure flies. The kid is super-excited about going back to school, being a fifth grader, a safety patrol, and seeing all her friends. I'm a little less excited about early mornings, but can't help but smile at her enthusiasm and hope it rubs off on me a little bit.Here we go .. ....more

throwback thursday: old barney

I grew up at the Jersey Shore and spent loads of time on Long Beach Island, but I don't think I ever climbed Old Barney, its lighthouse — that is, until last week. I wasn't sure at first that I'd make it all the way up, but thanks to some way stains along the way, I did. And it was great ....more

r.i.p. lauren bacall, 1924-2014

“If you want me just whistle. You know how to whistle don't you? Just put your lips together and blow.” "Stardom isn't a profession, it's an accident." "I think your whole life shows in your face and you should be proud of that." She was gorgeous, talented, a woman not afraid to speak her mind ....more