By Caldwell Titcomb Some plays are so long that they drive people to despair. In the standard theatrical canon the palm goes to Goethe’s “Faust,” Part I of which runs 4612 lines, and Part II takes the total to 12,111 lines. Next comes Ibsen’s “Peer Gynt.” The playwright did not intend this to be staged […]
Not every critic is inspired by British playwright Tom Stoppard’s epic, Tony award-winning trilogy about the trials and tribulations of the 19th century Russian radical Alexander Herzen. Download the podcast By Bill Marx I had high expectations for Tom Stoppard’s labor of love, but walked away from his bloated homage to the great Russian journalist […]
Edgar Degas once said that painting should be akin to committing a crime. And many Americans saw creation of some of the most important works of American art as just that—roguish, cunning and wicked—in short, criminal. Visual Shock: A History of Art Controversies in American Culture by Michael Kammen. Penguin Random House, 480 pages, $18. […]
This is an intelligent exhibit, not just conceptually but in that it requires the viewer to actively make connections while absorbing the art.
Those looking to expand their horizons on art and narrative should make the time for Cleophas and His Own: A North Atlantic Tragedy, a very (nearly three hours) long but equally rewarding debut from director Michael Maglaras, who also stars in the film. By Adrienne LaFrance Cleophas and His Own is the recitation of a […]
By Adrienne LaFrance Picture an alternate 2006 in which the internet slave trade in America is an integral part of the economy, only white men have the right to vote, and culture is devoid of jazz, rock ‘n’ roll and countless other things. Head to Fenway and you’ll hear the national anthem, “Dixie,” played before […]
The subjects of David Hockney’s portraits have been totally absorbed into his art and autobiography. “David Hockney Portraits” at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA By Peter Walsh BOSTON, Mass.— The biggest crowds at the MFA’s “David Hockney Portraits” hover near a wall of large-format etchings titled “A Rake’s Progress” (1961-63). Based on a […]
Old timers Ray Davies, an ex-Kink, and Donald Fagen, ex-Steely Dan, have released surprisingly youthful solo albums. “Morph the Cat” (Reprise); “Other People’s Lives” (V2) By James Marcus “Hope I die before I get old,” declared The Who’s Pete Townshend in 1965, and certainly there have been times, during his drink-and-drug-addled middle decades, when he […]
Two new films explore the provocative premise that slavery in America didn’t end after the Civil War.
By Thomas Garvey Michael Haneke may be the only living director who really matters, but you might not guess that from “Cache” (“Hidden”), the new film that has finally brought the brilliant Austrian auteur some serious media attention. It’s far easier, actually, to guess from “Cache” why he’s suddenly a press darling: the film treats […]