Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Thinking about Owen Wilson
Nice piece by Dallas writer Matt Zoller Seitz on Owen Wilson, and why it's dangerous to speculate on depression and motivations.

As Seitz writes, "[W]hen I read news stories expressing incredulity that a well-liked comedic actor might be depressed enough to try to end it all, I wonder what planet these writers are from, and if they've ever spent time among the humans that populate this one."

Well said.
Monday, August 27, 2007
Looking forward to fall
I love summer, but after the spate of 100-degree days we've endured in Atlanta recently, I have to say I'm ready for fall.

Fortunately for me, there's more to the season than shorter days and chillier nights. Here are some of the things I'm looking forward to:

- Both Philip Roth and Richard Russo have new novels coming out -- "Exit Ghost" (Houghton Mifflin) and "Bridge of Sighs" (Knopf), respectively. Roth's, the final book (perhaps) in the Zuckerman series, is due October 1; Russo's comes out a week earlier.

- The Emmys (September 16). Despite all the acclaim it accumulated during its run, "The Sopranos" won the Emmy for best drama just once, in 2004. (Most of the time it was the bridesmaid to "The West Wing.") Will it go out on top?

- Bob Dylan continues his Perpetual Tour this fall. For several shows -- including one in metro Atlanta -- his opening act is Elvis Costello. Now that's getting your money's (and lyrics') worth.

- If you saw "The Bourne Ultimatum," you probably saw the trailer for "American Gangster." I'm hoping it lives up to its credits: stars Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe, writer Steven Zaillian and director Ridley Scott. All I know is that it was one of the rare trailers I've seen lately that made me think, "This I gotta see." (November 2)

- I probably won't get around to it until a lengthy vacation, but Criterion is releasing Rainer Werner Fassbinder's monumental miniseries "Berlin Alexanderplatz" -- all 15 1/2 hours of it -- on November 13. Fire up your DVD players.

- And -- even though, being a baseball pessimist, I have to think my Braves won't even come close to making it (can anyone around here pitch this game?) -- the World Series is, as always, due in late October. To me, nothing makes for a more refreshing autumn day than colorful leaves, a nip in the air, and watching the National and American league winners bid for the championship. If only the games didn't run 'til midnight here in the East. (Thanks a lot, Fox and MLB.)

What are your fall highlights?
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