Two new essays in one week: The Enlightened Replicant and the Liberated Marionette

New writing is heating up my laptop these days. I have two new essays — my first ever contribution to my favorite film-essay website, Bright Wall Dark Room, and the second in my new series on faith and fantasy at The Rabbit Room, a reflection on Disney's 1940 feature Pinocchio.


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Newsic: New song from Tom Skinner, Thom Yorke, and Johnny Greenwood

This isn't an easy song to sing along with. It shouldn't be. But it represents a meaningful anger, a broken heart, a soulful lament, a rage expressed in love for those who have been wronged.


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Sunday Song: Von Bieker and Knathan Ryan sing their quarantine longings

Knathan Ryan and Dave Von Bieker are two friends whose music pops up in heavy rotation during my morning commutes. Their hopeful spirits inspire me; their artistry is personal, bright, and energetic; and their new songs hit just right in a time of quarantine fatigue.


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Leo Carax’s Annette sparks a conversation with “Catholic Cinephile” Evan Cogswell

In the latest episode of the Looking Closer podcast, “Catholic Cinephile” Evan Cogswell makes an argument that Annette is a great musical and, in fact, his favorite film of the year so far.


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Sunday Song: Listening Closer to Rhiannon Giddens and Nick Cave

Here are two of my favorite 2021 songs so far, one from Rhiannon Giddens, the other from Nick Cave.


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Persuade Me: Should I see A Quiet Place Part II… or not?

I'm not making a priority of seeing A Quiet Place Part II. You're invited to try to change my mind.


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Lee Isaac Chung Week, Day Four: two epic conversations with the director of Minari

In June of 2009, I met Lee Isaac Chung for the first time. We talked about his first feature film Munyurangabo. Nine summers later, I sat down with Chung to talk again — this time about his unpredictable and surprising journeys since then. The recording of that interview is now available for you thanks to Image.


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Lee Issac Chung Week, Day Two: Retrospectives

Minari director Lee Isaac Chung has a new essay in the L.A. Times. Have you been reading Looking Closer for the decade that has passed since he shared an essay with us? Here it is again: "Retrospectives."


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Lee Isaac Chung Week: Day One

This week, I'm celebrating the theatrical and streaming release of "Minari" in honor of filmmaker Lee Isaac Chung. We'll get it started with just a clip from a 2010 interview that will set some of the context for my appreciation of this filmmaker.


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