Confessions of a Former ‘New York Times’ Washington Correspondent

Robert M. Smith

I picked up a reporter’s notebook, handed it to him, and told him to bring a pen. Bob’s idea of showing emotion was to smile slightly, showing the well-­stimulated incisors. He didn’t smile. No doubt he thought, the kid’s acting up again, but . . . it’s his last day, and it was. I was thirty-­one and had been a reporter at the Times for four years, but I was leaving to go to Yale Law School. Except I’d just gotten a scoop and I couldn’t walk away from it.

Ed Helms Tackles Fatherhood and Surrogacy in ‘Together Together’

Adam Gravano

Helms portrays a man we can't help but cringe at as he bumbles toasts, telling his family about his plans, or being a supportive partner. He also invests seemingly trivial decisions, like the color of the nursery, with outsize importance. Much like another alumnus of The Office, Steve Carell in The Big Short or Foxcatcher, Helms provides evidence that he's ready for roles that are more than just cheap laughs.

Amnesty International Demands End to Israel’s Repression of Palestinians in Jerusalem

PNN

“Evidence gathered by Amnesty International reveals a chilling pattern of Israeli forces using abusive and wanton force against largely peaceful Palestinian protesters in recent days. Some of those injured in the violence in East Jerusalem (al-Quds) include bystanders or worshippers making Ramadan prayers,” the deputy director for the Middle East and North Africa at Amnesty International, Saleh Higazi, said.

COVID-19 Has Led to a Rise in U.S. ‘Food Insecurity’

BPT

Of those surveyed, their concern isn’t only for themselves: 58 percent of respondents globally are parents, and for those who have experienced food insecurity, 88 percent are worried their child will have lasting health effects as a result of food insecurity during the pandemic. Therefore, 70 percent are worried their child is not getting all the nutrients they need — as a result of not having access to school meals while they are distance learning.

Brewmance Pays Homage to America’s Master Craft Brewers

Adam Gravano

Beer not only predates the pilgrims in the Americas, but it played a decisive role in the pilgrims choosing to make landfall in Massachusetts — they were running low. With its long-standing history of production and consumption, with only a brief interlude for the national experiment in Prohibition, beer comes as close as any other beverage to being a national beverage. Despite this august history, the new documentary Brewmance – directed by Christo Brock -- picks up its story later.

International Political Intrigue Spans Continents in ‘Treasure Seekers’

Roberta Seret

She wondered who could have helped Rafsanjani with his gold from Ceausescu’s corrupt deals and terrorist partnerships with Gaddafi, Arafat, Ali Bhutto, and North Korea’s Kim Jung Il. A billion dollars of gold from Romania, such a poor country, while the people lived for twenty-four years under a ruthless dictatorship with little food, little heat, little light, no rights, no freedom, no life. Marina wished she knew what had happened to that gold, deposited in Tehran.

Land and the Sweep of History in Simon Winchester’s New Book

Lee Polevoi

His ownership serves as a springboard for what emerges as a thorough examination of how land ownership has influenced the sweep of history. In the course of his far-reaching study, Winchester looks at demarcation of property lines in the Bronze Age, the cruel land grab from Native Americans in the 18th and 19th centuries, mass starvation in Stalinist Russia, and the age-old conflict over territory between Israel and Palestine.

Alice Neel -- a Collector of Souls – at the Met

Sandra Bertrand

Alice Neel's long overdue retrospective, People Come First, is currently drawing hordes of visitors at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. It’s no surprise, considering she based her entire life and career around the intimates and strangers that surrounded her. Every class, race, and gender came under her razor-sharp gaze.  And no human being encountering her subjects comes away unscathed. 

 

‘Mortal Kombat’ Offers Blood, Guts, and Not Much Else

Ulises Duenas

The silver lining is that if you’re a Mortal Kombat fan and you want blood and gore, that’s exactly what you get. While the fight choreography is subpar, the amount of violence in the movie is through the roof. While it is gratuitous and sometimes comical, it was still fun to see and it wouldn’t have been a bona fide Mortal Kombat movie without it. It’s clear that the writer and director had a passion for the games and knowledge of their history.

Subscribe to Highbrow Magazine RSS