Best Films of 2016

I may be a bit late to the party considering the Golden Globes aired last Sunday, but the Oscars won’t be announcing their nominations until the 24th so we’ll say this list was right on time. Then again, I’m not a member of the Academy so screeners don’t get sent my way. I have to watch movies the old-fashioned way – guilt-tripping my friends into coming with me then bribing them with food (you offer to buy dinner after the movie, so they have to stay). Here are the top ten films I gladly coerced people into seeing with me.  Continue reading

Top 5 Books I Read in 2016

Another year, another Top 5 list. It’s an ordinary thing to do as a new year and altogether a new reading list is underway. But I assure you there is nothing ordinary about the books I’ve singled out below. It’s because of their singular impact on me that, in turn, compelled me to pay them forward. As with last year, this list is a little more selective than my best films list (coming up shortly) and that’s because books require a little more time. Here are the top 5 books I happily dedicated my time to in 2016 and would happily do so again.

  1. Scrappy Little Nobody14-scrappy-little-nobody-w1200-h630

Up in the Air remains as one of my favorite movies of all time. So it’s with a bit of coincidence that I chose Anna Kendrick’s delightful collection of essays as my form of entertainment during my flight. At 30,000 feet, she was my row buddy, the two of us getting to know each other over complimentary snacks and drinks. I was wonderfully entertained by her charming wit and honesty, a voice she strikes pitch-perfectly (you bet your ass that pun was intended). Hollywood may be glamorous, but ol’ Kendrick isn’t afraid to point out how hideous of an institution it is. Beyond that, she traces us to her humble beginnings as a young starlet working full-time as a stage actress, then as a teenager awkwardly stumbling through her discovery years while occasionally being dwarfed by her own ambitions. The spotlight doesn’t make everything pretty; it simply shines a light on what desperately needs attention. Kendrick may not crave attention, but she’s certainly got mine.  Continue reading

Dawn of DC

batman-vs-superman-trailer-image-56Comic book fans are still reeling from the whirlwind of footage shown at Comic-Con. Trailers for Suicide Squad and Batman V Superman undoubtedly stole the show, and the anticipation for DC’s long-awaited summer pairing is at a fever pitch. We now have a better glimpse at what Warner Bros. is trying to create. It’s grand. It’s demented. And my, is it perfect. Continue reading