February 26, 2012 |
The Academy Awards ceremony is, by nature, a rite of self-congratulation and self-love - the movie industry showers plaudits and prizes on itself for the work of the last year, but also for achievements of a lifetime. Venerable stars and filmmakers are honored for the length and breadth of their careers, vintage clips are spliced into thematic reels, the actors, screenwriters, shooters, costumers, composers, and directors who passed away in the preceding 12 months are remembered.
February 19, 2012 |
The most worthless thing one can do at Niagara Falls is merely stop and look at the falls. If you don't get wet, you haven't gotten your time or money's worth out of your trip. For those who don't know their way around this world wonder, here is a Niagara Falls primer. Where exactly is Niagara Falls? There is a two-part answer to this question since there are the cities and the water. First, the cities. Niagara Falls, N.Y., sits across the Niagara River from Niagara Falls, Ontario.
February 5, 2012 |
The moment you enter "Van Gogh Up Close" at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the exhibition tells you that it's something special, one of those uncommon revelations of artistic soul that once seen, can never be forgotten. The trigger is a small painting of several sunflower heads, brilliant yellow against an azure background. Sunflowers are Vincent van Gogh's painterly signature, so why does this image, lent by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, make such a powerful impact? It even overshadows a much larger, and more typical, still life of sunflowers in a vase that hangs within arm's length.
January 23, 2012
Amos Alonzo Stagg, Glenn "Pop" Warner, Knute Rockne, Paul "Bear" Bryant, and now Joe Paterno. The legendary Penn State coach, who died Sunday after battling lung cancer, has joined a pantheon of departed gridiron generals who pushed college football to its lofty place among America's pastimes. Even the tarnish to his reputation that Paterno deserved, for failing to act more decisively after the alleged rape of a young boy was reported to him, won't keep football historians from giving him his due as one of the greatest coaches ever to walk the sidelines.
January 22, 2012
Victor Davis Hanson is a classicist and historian at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, and author of the just-released The End of Sparta In Greek mythology, the prophetess Cassandra was doomed both to tell the truth and to be ignored. Our modern version is a bankrupt Greece that we seem to discount. News accounts abound now of impoverished Athens residents scrounging pharmacies for scarce aspirin - as Greece is squeezed to make interest payments to the supposedly euro-pinching German banks.
January 19, 2012
AT TIMES, Aaron McKie gets that feeling again, the one he carries around in his pocket as if it is his license. Andre Iguodala feathers a pass to Evan Turner in midflight for a slam and the Wells Fargo crowd collectively hits its feet. Elton Brand hits the deck for a loose ball under his own basket. Evan Turner finishes off a tic-tac-toe fastbreak slam. Jrue Holiday goes behind his back on a drive down the lane in traffic, slamming it as punctuation, and the 15,201 hit their feet again.
January 15, 2012 |
There was a sign on the door outside the famous old gymnasium: "Camden High Basketball - Worth The Price Of Admission. " Finally, truth in advertising. Camden might not be a South Jersey power anymore, although the Panthers are moving back in that direction in a serious hurry. They might not be threats to win the program's 12th state title this March and force maintenance to repaint that center circle on the floor of Clarence Turner Gymnasium. But something is happening with this proud, old program.
December 11, 2011
A Cultural, Visual, and Personal History By Robert Hughes Knopf. 512 pp. $35 Reviewed by John Timpane Could you have a better guide to Rome than Robert Hughes? To the idea of Rome, I mean, or, closer yet, to the idea of the history of Rome? This book is a panoramic account of Rome's several ascents: pagan empire of 1,229 years; Christian empire for nearly as long; capital of art for millenniums; one of the homes of modernism; dysfunctional yet somehow influential modern citadel of corruption.
November 9, 2011 |
EVERY SON tries to one-up his father. Heck, isn't that half the fun of being a boy, especially as the years zip by and cluelessness yields to perception? Friday night at 7 o'clock, before what promises to be a large, energized crowd at Northeast's Charlie Martin Memorial Stadium, Mike Piscopo will have a chance to help La Salle High win a fourth straight Catholic AAAA football championship. Piscopo, a 6-1, 190-pound senior, makes his most significant contributions at outside linebacker.