Hero, meet your villain; or, never mind

It's a common trope in fiction: a final confrontation between the central hero of a story and its central villain. It's an important trope in Westerns, both on the page and screen -- Clint Eastwood's "Unforgiven" is just one famous example. And we see it in works of fiction that are too many to count: … Continue reading Hero, meet your villain; or, never mind

Koheleth and Tolstoy

February 1, 2021 Reading “Koheleth” and Tolstoy's “Confession” back-to-back lifts both works for me.  Both works struggle with the fact that death is coming for everyone.  Both observe constantly how the good and the wicked have random rewards in this life; both hang on to the idea of knowledge/wisdom while questioning both its extent and … Continue reading Koheleth and Tolstoy

Northanger Abbey movie (2007)

November 16, 2020 I’ve just seen the 2007 version of “Northanger Abbey”, and maybe my expectations were too high, but it was disappointing.  Everything is too broad and obvious.  We know, for example, who are the bad apples because they are clearly, ominously bad as soon as we see them.  All mystery, ambiguity, and uncertainty … Continue reading Northanger Abbey movie (2007)

Northanger Abbey

November 13, 2020 Spoilers ahead Finished “Northanger Abbey.”  Ok, I’m going to be grossly unfair to Austen here, but I’ve got to call this one “The One With the Brothers and Sisters”: the Morlands (Catherine/James), the Thorpes (Isabella/John), and the Tilneys (Eleanor/Henry/Frederick). “Persuasion” can be “The One With the Widow(er)s.”  I guess “Emma” would have … Continue reading Northanger Abbey