Citizen Shame: Home Alone Again (Again)

As the holidays approach, everybody turns to childhood classics for a little sentiment and nostalgia. Movies like “Elf” (2003), “It’s A Wonderful Life” (1946) and “Love Actually” (2003) fill our screens and hearts while we try to remember the holidays as times of joy and family instead of a yearly platform for that one uncle to quip about […]

Citizen Shame: The original ‘Troll’ (2?)

In one of the most bizarre experiences of my young life, I once ended up at my sister’s ex-boyfriend’s house with a few older kids on a Sunday night and witnessed an abomination of filmmaking: the infamous “Troll 2” (1990). I ate some Doritos and watched as everything I thought a movie couldn’t mess up was […]

Citizen Shame: Slow and moderately angry

With the “Fast and Furious” (2001–) franchise in the news after the stunningly emotional feud between Tyrese Gibson and Dwayne ”The Rock” Johnson, it seems appropriate to revisit the series that went from a gritty crime thriller to a bizarre bonanza of all things bro in just eight movies. When Paul Walker got behind the wheel […]

Citizen Shame: The planet without a Santa Claus

Spoiler alert: This column contains plot information from the 1964 film “Santa Claus Conquers the Martians.” It’s the day after Halloween, which is known in enlightened circles as the start of the holiday season. Christmas carols, flashing lights and probably, like, one half-exciting flurry of snow are on their way, so it is time to fully get in […]

Citizen Shame: The ‘Cat’ that won’t leave your head

My seventh grade French class is memorable for two things: that time I spilled my entire water bottle on the girl sitting next to me and the relentless screenings of French-dubbed movies. Maybe it was our class’ fascination with cinema, but it more likely had to do with our teacher’s lack of belief in actual teaching. […]

Citizen Shame: It’s John Green’s Fault (in Our Stars)

With the recent release of the latest book from young adult author and icon John Green, it seems fitting to revisit another disturbing chapter of my childhood: my sister’s obsession with “The Fault in Our Stars” (2012). My sister might be the smartest person I know, and in high school she was known for always carrying […]

‘Blade Runner 2049’ is a lesson in how to continue a classic

The year is 2049. Los Angeles, a megacity suffering from overpopulation, ecological upheaval and an ever increasing reliance on technology, finds itself confronted with greater issues regarding the android slave laborers, or replicants. Renowned replicant hunter, or blade runner, Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) has vanished. Shortly after 2019, the Tyrell Corporation dissolved due to replicant insurrection. In […]

Citizen Shame: ‘Cars’ drove me mad

I have a brother six years younger than me, and therefore I spent much of my childhood drowning in Wiggles CDs, “Blue’s Clues” (1996–2007) reruns and other things that constituted kids’ entertainment in 2010. The worst of it came when my mother got one of those minivan TVs that only those in the back seat could […]

Q&A: ‘Dolores’ director Peter Bratt talks storytelling, community activism

The subject of the upcoming documentary film “Dolores” (2017), 87-year-old labor-rights activist and legend Dolores Huerta, remains “the most vocal activist you’ve never heard of.” As cofounder of the United Farm Workers labor union with Cesar Chavez, Huerta spearheaded the Delano grape strike in 1965 and played a key role in negotiating fair contracts for migrant […]

Citizen Shame: If only something was ‘Happening’

In 2007, Boston’s own Mark Wahlberg found a new level of success when he was nominated for an Academy Award for his work in Martin Scorsese’s “The Departed” (2006). Two years later, he demonstrated that talent is a spectrum by performing in M. Night Shyamalan’s disasterpiece “The Happening” (2008). You may know Shyamalan as the man who ruined […]