Cinemadope: Cracking the Enigma
Jan28

Cinemadope: Cracking the Enigma

As a young and nerdish boy, I was obsessed with words. I collected them the way a lepidopterist might collect moths, catching them on the wing and pinning them down to puzzle out their origins, oddities, and family ties to other words. It all felt like a marvelously intricate and interconnected game that was going on around me all the time, but that most of the world seemed to ignore. I couldn’t understand that; to me it seemed like...

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Between the Lines: The Vagina Dialogues
Jan28

Between the Lines: The Vagina Dialogues

The show must go on, as they say — until it’s gone on long enough. On Jan. 14, the student-run Project Theatre group at Mount Holyoke College canceled its annual production of Eve Ensler’s play The Vagina Monologues, opting instead to write and produce a new show of its own. The reason: Ensler’s 1996 play, made up of an annually updated collection of monologues about what it means to have a vagina, offers little voice to transgender...

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CinemaDope: Southern Exposure, an immigrant’s dangerous journey
Jan21

CinemaDope: Southern Exposure, an immigrant’s dangerous journey

The people who run the show over at Amherst Cinema have never been content with the idea that their venue is a mere movie theater. From the start, the vision of the theater encompassed not just great film, but also community enrichment, education, and more. As the years have passed, that vision has grown, and ever-richer offerings have been added to the cinema’s slate. Consider just a few of the series and special events that have lit...

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Cinemadope: Don’t Mess with Dad
Jan15

Cinemadope: Don’t Mess with Dad

Any career that lasts long enough is sure to have its share of ups, downs, and surprises. Sometimes we come out on top, sometimes we fall flat on our face. Most of us, though, have the blessing of soaring or falling with a bit more privacy than the actors and actresses we look to for our entertainment. A bad picture can follow them around like a stink cloud, even if most people never see it. Call it the Gigli Effect. But the opposite...

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Cinemadope: Tingle All the Way
Dec18

Cinemadope: Tingle All the Way

There are so many wonderful mysteries left in the world. In an era when so much can be laid bare with just a few keystrokes, it’s comforting, somehow, to know that there is much we don’t fully understand. Not just the odd bits here and there, but some fairly big things, like the true nature of gravity, or why exactly we need to sleep. But if those questions are usually left to the big brains among us, there is an equally...

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Cinemadope: The Spirit of Giving
Dec18

Cinemadope: The Spirit of Giving

As we close out another year on this great blue marble, I’m reminded of an annual event in the film world: the December doldrums. This is that week, which creeps in every year just before Christmas, when theaters seem to be holding their collective breath. People are busy shopping the last-minute sales, and many studios are holding back their biggest pictures fr Christmas Day releases, when those people eager to escape the...

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