I Never Wrote the Most Important Story I Ever Wrote, Part 7

Part 1 of this essay may be found here. Part 2 of this essay may be found here. Part 3 of this essay may be found here. Part 4 of this essay may be found here. Part 5 of this essay may be found here. Part 6 of this essay may be found here. The … Continue reading I Never Wrote the Most Important Story I Ever Wrote, Part 7

I Never Wrote the Most Important Story I Ever Wrote, Part 4

Part 1 of this essay may be found here. Part 2 of this essay may be found here. Part 3 of this essay may be found here. When I awoke late on the afternoon of Thursday, February 15, 2001 in my small studio apartment in West Philadelphia, I felt completely rotten. And more than a … Continue reading I Never Wrote the Most Important Story I Ever Wrote, Part 4

I Never Wrote the Most Important Story I Ever Wrote, Part 3

Part 1 of this essay may be found here. Part 2 of this essay may be found here. When I awoke in my new apartment – on the 8th floor of the Madison Building in the Presidential Apartment complex, situated where City Avenue meets the Schuylkill Expressway – on Wednesday, February 14, 2001, the temperature … Continue reading I Never Wrote the Most Important Story I Ever Wrote, Part 3

I Never Wrote the Most Important Story I Ever Wrote, Part 2

Part 1 of this essay may be found here. I cannot remember exactly when I first saw Hammett. By which I mean, when I first watched the second half of the 1982 film, a fictional account set in 1928 San Francisco, just before the eponymous writer published his first novel. One night, while I was … Continue reading I Never Wrote the Most Important Story I Ever Wrote, Part 2

Who Is the Most Heroic Character in Film Noir?

A few days, I published an essay distilling my thoughts about a hypothetical Film Noir Cinematic Universe (“FNCU”). In a tweet I wrote to make readers aware of this essay, I said, “While there are a ridiculous number of villains in #FilmNoir, I was genuinely surprised how many legitimate #heroes there are.” ***WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD*** … Continue reading Who Is the Most Heroic Character in Film Noir?

Grappling With the Instinctive – and Unnecessary – Fictionalization of History

I recently watched Michael Mann’s Public Enemies for the first time since its 2009 theatrical release. Based on Bryan Burrough’s excellent 2004 book of the same name, it narrows the focus of the sprawling book to the cat-and-mouse game played by bank robber John Dillinger and Melvin Purvis, special agent in charge of the Chicago … Continue reading Grappling With the Instinctive – and Unnecessary – Fictionalization of History

Finding The Worst Character In Neo-Noir: Let The Voting Begin!

WARNING: Spoilers ahead!! In two previous posts, I… Introduced two metrics, POINTS and Opportunity-Adjusted POINTS (“OAP”), to rank films by how often they are cited as “neo-noir,” allowing for how many reputable authors on film noir could have listed them.Selected 64 characters as contenders for “worst character in neo-noir.” These 64 characters are evenly distributed … Continue reading Finding The Worst Character In Neo-Noir: Let The Voting Begin!

Finding The Worst Character In Neo-Noir: Setting The Brackets

WARNING: Spoilers ahead!! [Editor's note: In an earlier version of this post, I neglected to include Woo-Jin Lee in my Cunning Manipulator list, so I correct this post by adding him and removing Hedra Carlson] In a previous post, I used two metrics—POINTS and Opportunity-Adjusted POINTS (“OAP”) to identify 96 films most often cited as … Continue reading Finding The Worst Character In Neo-Noir: Setting The Brackets

Dispatches from Brookline: Home Schooling and Social Distancing VIII

I have described elsewhere how my wife Nell, our two daughters—one in 4th grade and one in 6th grade—and I were already coping with social distancing and the closure of the public schools in Brookline, Massachusetts until at least April 7, 2020. Besides staying inside as much as possible, we converted our dining room into … Continue reading Dispatches from Brookline: Home Schooling and Social Distancing VIII

And for my 100th post…100 random facts (about me)

This is post #100; thank you for continuing to “just bear with me.” December 19 is also the two-year anniversary of this site’s launch (so I should gift myself either cotton or china, and it should be red). To honor this symmetry, and to lighten the mood from my previous three posts (dealing—however obliquely—with the … Continue reading And for my 100th post…100 random facts (about me)