Film Review Podcast: “71”

Posted: March 26th, 2015 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | No Comments »

movieI’m not sure I’ve ever really understood all the causes and underpinnings and whys and wherefores of the period of conflict in Northern Ireland, known as “The Troubles.”

Which confusion didn’t diminish my appreciation for the truly fine film, “71.”

It depicts the travails of a young soldier, who is left behind by his regiment in the Catholic section of Belfast, during those tortured times.

There is a mesmerizing surreal quality to the whole affair.

Will he escape? Is there anyone he can trust? If so, which of the characters who cross his path should he?

This is a sturdy film, well-crafted.

For further explanation, please listen.

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Rants & Raves: Weekend Battle of the UKs

Posted: March 23rd, 2015 | Filed under: Culture, Personalities | No Comments »

historyIt was with a bemused sense of irony that I observed the confluxification of two sets of UK royals, arriving in our burg simultaneously.

In one corner, the tweedly, toothy twosome from across the pond.

Prince Charlie and his former inamorata, now bride, a/k/a now known as the Duchess of Cornwall.

In the other, the ever true UK royals, the University of Kentucky Wildcats.

Who won this battle of the UKs for relevance and our attention?

I trust you can guess the correct answer, but listen anyway.

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Rants & Raves: Etymology of Dongle

Posted: March 16th, 2015 | Filed under: Culture, Ruminations | No Comments »

historyThough it’s usually silliness, James and I perpetrate during my Saturday morning stint on FPK 91.9, every once in awhile, I feel compelled to push the dialog in a more scholarly direction.

There are subjects which deserve to be discussed in full.

Words, how they sound, what they mean, where they come from — those are contemplations with which I’m too often obsessed.

Such as the derivation of the word, “dongle.”

It was a word I couldn’t shake all last week.

So I felt to purge the thoughts with my radio essay.

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Film Review Podcast: What We Do In The Shadows

Posted: March 13th, 2015 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | No Comments »

movieIt is hard for me to believe that I’m really writing these words.

And doing so without a sense of irony.

My favorite film last year was a vampire movie, though like none you’ve ever seen. Terminally hip.

Jim Jarmush’s “Only Lovers Left Alive.”

And now, my fave so far this year is, yes, it’s twu it’s twu, another vampire film.

This, the extremely hilarious, “What We Do In The Shadows.”

For further details, listen up.


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Rants & Raves: Culture Maven is a Deli Maven

Posted: March 9th, 2015 | Filed under: Culture, Ruminations | 1 Comment »

historyThere are times when a man has to take a stand, to stand up for himself, to stand up against an injustice.

Which is what I was forced to do Saturday morning on FPK 91.9.

A film is out, a documentary, about a matter of which I have vast and deep knowledge.

I coulda, woulda, shoulda been in it.

So, on Saturday morning, I tried to right the wrong.

This is a matter of major import.

Please listen:


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Film Review Podcast: Focus

Posted: March 9th, 2015 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | No Comments »

movieI know, I know, it’s been awhile since I’ve posted a movie review.

Generally speaking, the reasons I can share, beyond some truly sordid details which shall not be revealed, are a new computer, new software, the learning curve, etc, etc, etc.

But, I’m back, and hopefully shall be making it to the cineplex again on a regular basis. And, thus, shall be able to report to you on all matters cinematic.

Below is my take on the glossy grifter flick “Focus.”

Will Smith. Margot Robbie. On the con.

Listen up for the details.


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Rants & Raves: We Crave The Lurid

Posted: March 3rd, 2015 | Filed under: Community, Culture, Personalities | 1 Comment »

historyLouisville is the epicenter of college hoops.

It’s a fact. Check out the TV ratings, come NCAA tournament time.

And, like most places, Louisvillians become entranced with the lurid side of life, such as when celebs get in trouble.

Those two tendencies clashed last week, thus trending upward, like some sort of Ohio Valley Vortex.

So, Saturday, during my gig with James at FPK 91.9, after we schmoozed as usual, I weighed in on the confluxation of those two societal tendencies, college hoops meets tabloid fodder.

Listen up:

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Caffeinated Chronicles: Septuagenarian Serenata

Posted: February 26th, 2015 | Filed under: Culture, Ruminations | 1 Comment »

coffee1I am a serial late night eater.

I was inclined to pun, a “cereal” late night eater, but, these days, my snack of choice most often is peanut butter and apples. Rather than the Kasha nuggets, quinoa flakes, whole wheat blend with almond milk, that used to be my go to, pre-pillowtime food fix.

While I’d love to eat less after the dinner hour, it is an addiction I’ll accept.

Back in the day, it used to be cocaine, and I’d spend my evenings, doing my own version of Tony Montana.

A few extra calories, an added inch to the waistline, is easily a better alternative.

It’s no coincidence that this need to munch has coincided with another habit.

I now have, almost every night, the wackiest of dreams. Every once in awhile, nightmarish, but most of the time, just . . . weird. Engaged with people I haven’t seen in decades, people that I hardly knew at all, in strange places, some I recognize, many I don’t.

I believe I heard or read once that eating for bed causes crazy dreams. True or not, I’m drawing the connection. Read the rest of this entry »

Rants & Raves: Fifty Shades of Yoga Pants

Posted: February 25th, 2015 | Filed under: Culture | No Comments »

historyNormally in this space, on a weekly basis, I will post a podcast of my rant/ rave/ review, which I’d foisted on the radio listening public on FPK 91.9, the previous Saturday morning.

Making it possible to do so is my talented producer Brad Yost, who sends me the audio file to insert in this blog.

Well, Brad’s on vacation for a couple weeks. So, he can’t very well send such to me, can he? I mean, you know, he’s lolling on some white sandy beach somewhere balmy.

Normally I take a Pasadena, and wait until he returns. But, so taken am I with my own bon mots about 50 Shades of Grey, Peyton Place, yoga pants & culottes, I decided to record the essay in the studios here at Culture Maven Tower.

Which is to say, savor on, my loyal listeners. There’s much to be learned from the words to which you shall be exposed, should you make the right choice, the wise choice, the correct choice, and click the play button.

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Film Review Podcast: “Still Alice”

Posted: February 20th, 2015 | Filed under: Cinema, Film Reviews Podcast | No Comments »

movieOne of the most anticipated performances of the awards season is now on display in our town.

Say thank you to the cinema gods.

Say welcome to “Still Alice.”

Julianne Moore’s heralded portrayal of a fiftysomething, who learns she has Alzheimer’s Disease, is now playing in town.

Films as worthy as “Still Alice” rarely are staged for general release after the first of the year.

So, during the season of “Hot Tub Time Machine Part Deux.” we have the pleasure of viewing not only Ms. Moore’s amazing performance, but that of her co-stars Alec Baldwin as her hubby, and Kristen Stewart as one of her daughters.

For more details, listen up:

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Caffeinated Chronicles: State of Grace @ Dirty Kroger

Posted: February 20th, 2015 | Filed under: Community, Culture | No Comments »

coffee1Should you happen to know or cross paths in the Lower Clifton area with a thirtysomething African American woman with short cropped hair, a pierced nose, wearing a black Carhartt jacket, bless her and wish her a good day.

Her name is Cynthia.

I stopped by the DK (Dirty Kroger) this Friday afternoon, needing only one item.

I’d run out Splenda.

I was behind Cynthia in the checkout line. I’d never met nor seen her before that moment.

As she was paying, I set my box of sweetener on the counter.

She nodded to me. Then, turned to the clerk, and said, “I’ll pay for the man’s Splenda.” Read the rest of this entry »

Film Review Podcast: “Fifty Shades of Gray”

Posted: February 13th, 2015 | Filed under: Cinema | No Comments »

movieBe grateful.

Be very grateful.

No, I mean it, be extremely and unendingly grateful.

I have gone to see this movie to give you the insightful skinny before you plop down some hard earned money to experience it for yourself.

So, I wonder, can you tell by that, my view of the movie is, uh, somewhat less than positive?

Very discerning audience, mine.

You should listen anyway, for the full and complete review:

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