Archive for academy awards

The Book Booth: Another Oscar Show Edition



Image: Truthout

The Book Booth is a weekly feature at The Political Carnival, relating news, notes, and reflections from the world of books and publishing.  It is written by @SeattleDan and SeattleTammy, operators of an on-line bookstore (which you can find here) , who have been in the book business since shortly after the Creation, or close to 6000 years now.

The Book Booth: Another Oscar Show Edition

Indeed, they are rolling out the red carpets Sunday evening in Hollywood as the industry once again celebrates itself with lots of awards and stuff. May all the films you are rooting for win the statuette for outstanding work!

One of Hollywood's most valuable statuettes is actually a film prop, the one of which dreams are made of. Yes, if you have one of the original props of the Maltese Falcon, you've got yourself a treasure there. One year SeattleTammy gave me a replica for Christmas, but it was not enamaled in old jewels alas. Vanity has the story here of the priceless bird here.

Most film adaptations by author? I'd have guessed Stephen King. I'm not even close.
Whose Stories Make It to the BigScreen?

Good news for all Dr. Whovians! Last week saw the publication of the Dr. Who coloring book for your coloring pleasure. Time magazine tells the tale.
Dr. Who? Coloring Book

Although he has never won an Oscar (or been nominated for one), William Shatner has won both an Emmy and a Golden Globe award for his acting efforts. He now has another book available, Lenny, which details his friendship with Leonard Nimoy. Here he talks about Nimoy's second career as a poet.
William Shatner Writes About Leonard Nimoy in Lenny

I have long been fascinated about the relationships between different languages and what we can learn from those relationships. From BusinessInsider comes this wonderful chart, exploring them among the Indo-European and Uralic families. And there are cute cats!
How the Languages We Speak Are Interrelated

On the heels of the news that Harper Lee had passed away last week, we learned that novelist/philosopher Umberto Eco had also died at age 84. His The Name of the Rose is a wonderful mystery novel and more. If you haven't read it, go get a copy now.  NPR remembered the man here.
Umberto Eco Has Left Us at 84

The tribute poured in last week for Harper Lee. Here are five things you may or not have known about the author. I, for one, did not know she was a descendant of Robert E. Lee.
Remembrances of Harper Lee

Noam Chomsky, one of our remaining intellectuals, is still with us and his mind and writings are as active as ever. His new book, What Kind of Creatures are We? is a collection of recent lectures he has given. Here he discusses the work and other matters with Truthout.
Noam Chomsky Chooses Optimism Over Despair 

At my age now, I do try to exercise daily and while I'm not anyone's idea of fit, I do feel the benefits from it. Even better news is that for people who are at retirement age, belonging to a book group could be just as important as exercise in living longer.
More here.

Please have a beautiful weekend with lots of reading and books. By all means, let us know what is delighting you...and have fun watching the Oscars!


The Book Booth: Academy Awards Edition


Image: Oregon Life

The Book Booth is a weekly feature at The Political Carnival, relating news, notes, and reflections from the world of books and publishing. @SeattleDan, along with his wife, SeattleTammy, are operators of both an on-line bookstore here, as well as a brick and mortar storefront mini-store in Hoquiam, WA at 706 Simpson Ave (Route 101 South). Both have been in the book business since shortly after the Creation, or close to 6000 years now.

The Book Booth: Academy Awards Edition

Yet another year and once again, the Academy has neglected to nominate me for any awards at all. And after all the years I've put in, watching movies. I don't get it. But others will "get" their awards and, for me, another year of neglect.

Another guy neglected by the Academy was Norman Mailer. Of course if you've ever seen the screen versions of The Naked and the Dead or An American Dream, maybe that is understandable. But at least he'll be having a film adaptation coming up of his Armies of the Night, his account of the march on the Pentagon in 1967.

F. Scott Fitzgerald closed out his all too brief life, living in Hollywood, where he did screenplay doctoring and had a credit for his work on Three Comrades. His decline is well documented, and sad. Jeff Baker at Oregonlive has these reflections on his Hollywood career.
FSF in LaLa Land

The film version of 50 Shades of Grey opened this past weekend to mega millions of dollars in receipts. I don't think we'll be seeing it nominated for much of anything at next year's Oscars, but who knows? However someone should give an award to Gilbert Gottfried for his reading of the book, which absolutely Not Safe for Work.
50 Shades

I'm certainly not opposed to eroticism in fiction, if done well. TimeOut has these suggestions for books much better written than 50 Shades. I, for one, liked Vox by Nicholson Baker, very much.
Eroticism in Fiction

Here is a fun graphic timeline of books that have been banned over the centuries from PrinterInk. I don't think 50 Shades has made the cut yet for being an important banned book.
Banned Books

Of course To Kill a Mockingbird has been banned at various times and in various places. And with the announcement of a new Harper Lee novel coming out this summer, Sam Tanenhausl at Bloomberg reflects on the endurance of Mockingbird.
Why To Kill a Mockingbird Won't Die

In more fun book news, a new Dr. Seuss book will be published this coming July. It was discovered in his office, fully written, illustrated and entitled What Pet Should I Get. Publishers Weekly has the story here.

How well up are you on your Edgar Allan Poe quotations? And, for that matter, how well do you know your Goth song lyrics? Flavorwire challenges you to guess what is what here in this quiz. Good luck!  Edgar Allen Poe Goth Lyrics Quiz

This week saw the passing of former US Poet Laureate Philip Levine. He was a fine poet, accessible and thoughtful. NPR had this story on his life and work.
Philip Levine Has Left Us

Finally, our little town has had a very mild winter, if we don't count the eight inches of rain we had one day, leading to some major flooding. But the rest of the country seems to have snow. A lot of snow. And a great time to catch up on your reading. Buzzfeed looks at the upside of being snowbound.

Good luck to all you Oscar nominees and hoping I can join you on the red carpet next year! In the meantime, let us know what books you've got going and recommend. A good weekend to us all.


Ellen Rocked It, Then Kimmel Slayed the Après Academy Live

Image: The Today Show

Image: The Today Show

Written by guest contributor, "hardybear" of the wonderful Free Range Talk site:

Granted, Sunday started poorly. That thirsty piece of Florida flotsam, Marco Rubio, stentorianly re-declared the Cold War - - in what may have been an aria from "Frozen" --for the Tea Party Talent portion of his Pageant programming on NBC's MTP. [Tim Russert's deservedly bitter ghost snorted extra derisively.]

So fast forward to a glam evening in Holllly-wood.  Ellen was arguably epic. Sometimes I espouse spousal envy of Portia ... can you ponder the heights of domestic jocularity?  But if you couldn't let the night Party On until Jimmy Kimmel's 9th Annual Post Oscar Live Special for whatever reason, here's your fix. He baldly opened in bed with the aforementioned pair of brainy blondes.

The ensuingly black-tied Kimmel went on to nimbly interject his own categories of dramatically scored 'clips' in a hilarious parade of Youtubey parody trailers, with a roster of B.F.D. actors that would have had James Lipton calling for smelling salts. All of which are wicked hootworthy and available here.

Kevin Spacey charmed in spades as the sublimely urbane First Chair guest, see if you find his Carson impression as Academy level as the later Frank Underwood southuhn' sidebar asides.

Spacey was also a paws-down Kimmel Best Actor re-contender with his playful lead in "Meowadeaus". (Cracker Jack of a Cameo prize: Mandy Patinkin.)


Academy Awards sequel: "Gravity: #Christie stars as huge disintigrating space station."



It's Academy Awards Day! Yippee! Welcome to my vice, my chocolate, my drug of choice, and my food binge all wrapped up in one self-congratulatory, gaudy, narcissistic, glitzy, decadent, glamorous, self-indulgent crazy fun package during which nobody is allowed to call, text, email, or interrupt me in any way whatsoever.

Yes, I'm a twelve-year-old fan girl. But what else would you expect from a former TV/stage actress/writer/director? I live for this stuff, despite the embarrassing amount of money and attention spent on stars who regularly receive an embarrassing amount of money and attention.

I am a Red Carpet addict in search of a meeting:

"I am Laffy and I am an Academy Awards-aholic."

"Hi Laffy!"

I gobble this stuff up the way the media eats up Hillary Clinton 2016 speculation. However, I don't give one damn about who is wearing whom, and I resent every swag bag handed out to 1%ers who need freebies the way John Boehner needs another drink.

I do find myself ogling, admiring, and critiquing the Botoxed, lifted, tucked stars morphing into mere shadows of their pre-altered selves; and I have no problem snarking about every minute of the festivities-- including the embarrassingly groveling interviewers-- with Mr. Laffy while guzzling wine from my Sippy Cup.

Did I mention how grateful I am for high def Tee Vee Machines? Say it with me now: I am an equal opportunity Academy Awards reveler in the good, the bad, the ugly, the glammy, and the inevitably awkward.

I laugh, I groan, I get misty-eyed, frustrated, angry, and triumphant for three-plus seemingly endless hours of long-winded self-promotion by the glitterati and ABC alike.

So I admit it, this is my one Very Special night to be as superficial, catty, annoyed, and appreciative as I want, and often bored. I own it without reservation. So there.

Which brings me to this excellent series of images by Steve Brodner. He calls the collection "This Year's Oscar Nominees Kickstart Next Year's Sequels." The following is but a taste of how beautifully he combined the world of politics with 2014's Best Picture nominees, so please go here for the rest:

Oscars and politics cartoon Academy Awards Chris Christie, Koch Brothers via Steve Brodner