Get Out with Staff Picks
Feb03

Get Out with Staff Picks

Lexi Weege at Fort Hill Brewery • Friday Westfield native Lexi Weege has been making waves in recent years, sharing her enchanting vocals and unashamed lyrics throughout the region, but this weekend she plays at “her favorite place in all of the Valley” — Fort Hill Brewery in Easthampton. The jazz-indie artist will perform tunes off her latest release, Sweet Moon. It’s always refreshing to hear the uninhibited poetry she writes into...

Read More
Cinemadope: Turkish delight, the unstoppable spirit of youth
Jan11

Cinemadope: Turkish delight, the unstoppable spirit of youth

Twice in the 1990s, a striking debut made a splash in creative circles. There were, of course, other debuts that have left their marks — Quentin Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs, for instance, hit screens in 1992, cutting the channel for the coming river of pop culture-saturated stories that would make him a household name — but what made this particular pair stand out was that they both told the same story: one was a debut novel, the other...

Read More
Cinemadope: Shifting Gears, bikes, cars, and the future
Jan04

Cinemadope: Shifting Gears, bikes, cars, and the future

Here in the Pioneer Valley, bikes and biking are part of the fabric of daily life. People come from miles away to roll along the long bike path. Built on an old rail line that stretches across the Connecticut river and connects far-flung towns, the bike path has grown in popularity. New businesses have sprung up that cater to the two-wheeling crowd — check out the to-go window in the back of Easthampton’s Tandem Bagel Company, where...

Read More
Review: Beware the Schlock! Hallmark Holiday Movies
Dec14

Review: Beware the Schlock! Hallmark Holiday Movies

Beware the Schlock! Holiday movies (Hallmark Channel) Admittedly, I’m a sucker for bad movies and, it turns out, bad TV. Case in point: On Thanksgiving, as I settled back to digest the bird, I watched what turned out to be the most boring TV ever: a five-hour film showing miles of desolate scenery, captured by a camera mounted on top of an Alaskan train. Not exactly gripping entertainment, but somehow I survived (for three out of the...

Read More
Cinemadope: Nerd Christmas
Dec14

Cinemadope: Nerd Christmas

When I do the dishes in our house, I often like to plug in some headphones and catch up on a favorite podcast. One of those podcasts is a new discovery for me, so I’ve been catching up on old episodes during my nightly scrubbing. Most of the time, it doesn’t matter that the stream is about a year old, but last night I was listening when the subject of the new Star Wars trailer came up, and it took me a moment to realize that the hosts...

Read More
Hey, Hollywood and Bollywood — how about Valleywood?
Dec07

Hey, Hollywood and Bollywood — how about Valleywood?

When it comes to a homegrown film industry, the Pioneer Valley is hardly Los Angeles, New York, or Boston. But this area is brimming with creative people, and as cameras and film tech become ever more cheap and accessible, young talent is coming up alongside well-established filmmakers. It’s difficult, often thankless work, and raising funds for new projects is a royal pain. Why keep at it? Artists have an instinctive answer to this...

Read More