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Check It Out
You don’t need a tell-tale heart to lead the way to good mysteries. This week the Mystery Writers of America crowned winners of the 2013 Edgar Awards, and the raven’s call includes intrigue in a variety of styles. Check these out:
Best Novel: Live by Night by Dennis Lehane
Best First Novel by an American Author: The Expats by Chris Pavone
Best Paperback Original: The Last Policeman by Ben H. Winters
Best Fact Crime: Midnight in Peking by Paul French
Best Critical/Biographical: The Scientific Sherlock Holmes by James O’Brien
Best Short Story: “The Unremarkable Heart” by Karen Slaughter (in Mystery Writers of America presents Vengeance)
Best Juvenile: The Quick Fix by Jack D. Ferraiolo
Best Young Adult: Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein
Best Television Episode Teleplay: “A Scandal in Belgravia,” Sherlock, teleplay by Stephen Moffat
Robert L. Fish Memorial Award: “When They Are Done With Us” by Patricia Smith (in Staten Island Noir)
Mary Higgins Clark Award: The Other Woman by Hank Phillippi Ryan
How does the search for a missing cat turn into a warehouse explosion and a dead billionaire? Only in the world of Dirk Gently, an invention of Douglas Adams, can randomness and chaos actually back into solving cases. The anti-Sherlock Holmes, Gently eschews logic and deduction and instead holds tight to his faith in the interconnectedness of all things. Of course, this holistic approach comes at a price, a price that may include charging clients for a new refrigerator or a Bahamas vacation because, after all, that’s part of the process, too. New to DVD, the 2010 pilot and handful of 2012 episodes are just enough to endear the manic Dirk Gently and his put-upon partner to viewers ready for a madcap departure from the stereotypical British detective.
“We want to be the band that if we moved in next door to you, your lawn would die,” said Lemmy Kilmister of Motörhead. From hair bands to thrash to Finnish folk death metal, the Library has your heavy metal needs covered.
Canadian series Slings & Arrows is must-viewing for anyone with a weakness for theater. Each season showcases the staging of a Shakespeare play that finds its themes oddly paralleled in the current cast’s shenanigans. An entertaining blend of broad comedy and poignant life lessons played by a masterful cast.
Fishbone is a funk, ska, rock band whose mohawked members are as likely to play in zoot suits as naked. They are known for their eclectic, complicated sound and high-octane stage presence. Bands that were inspired by Fishbone, like No Doubt, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Jane’s Addiction, and Primus, became famous, and yet, mainstream success eluded Fishbone. Laurence Fishburne narrates Everyday Sunshine, a documentary that follows Angelo Moore and Norwood Fisher, the two remaining original band members. Vintage concert footage and interviews from admirers like Gwen Stefani, Ice-T, and George Clinton fill out Fishbone’s beginnings, near break-ups, and 30-plus years on the road.
There is an effortless elegance and charm to Trouble in Paradise, Ernst Lubitsch’s masterful, early Hollywood, romantic comedy. Gaston and Lily are a glamorous, larcenous couple embroiled in a scheme to steal a fortune from a gorgeous perfume magnate – but what happens when Gaston begins to fall for her?
Being a grown up can be a drag…but living in a world where a simple walk in the woods can turn magical, where beasts and mirrors can talk, and to-do lists include epic adventures, evil witches, and brothers named Grimm – now that is living.
Yang Lu Chan was born with a horn. He covers it up with a cap. This horn is the visual representation of his savant genius in Kung fu. The horn begins to turn from a healthy pink to black and Lu Chan is told that unless he can balance his interior and exterior, he will die. The only way to do this is to travel to a remote, mountain village to learn an equilibrium-inducing form of Kung fu. The only catch is…the town doesn’t teach outsiders. Set in 1900, Tai Chi Zero is a playful martial arts movie with steampunk elements and action-packed, almost anime-style fight scenes. If you liked Kung Fu Hustle, you’ll probably like Tai Chi Zero.
Ringo was best man at Harry Nilsson’s wedding. Nilsson knew all of The Beatles. In fact, when asked who his favorite band was, Lennon said “Nilsson.” Who is Harry Nilsson (And Why is Everybody Talkin’ About Him)? is a documentary examining the life of a songwriter who widely influenced popular music of the 20th century, but has since been somewhat forgotten. Using three dozen interviews with family and friends (like Yoko Ono, Robin Williams, and Eric Idle), along with music videos, home videos, and archive audio footage, a moving portrait of a musician is made. Nilsson’s vivid and complex creativity is exposed, along with the wild side that may have hastened his death.