Culture

Liam Neeson's Latest Comedic Endeavor

Your love of an author can't be truly complete until you know what books they're obsessed with. Philip Pullman, author of the "His Dark Materials" series, was among six writers who spoke to FT Magazine about their personal book collections. Worth it just for the pictures!

Liam Neeson: secret comic genius? The staid actor's case for a new career in comedy was definitely helped with a recent appearance in a video short with comic veteran Ricky Gervais.

Steve Carell will star in "Lunatics," adapted from the novel by Dave Barry and Alan Zweibel. One catch -- the book hasn't even come out yet! Is this how we do things now? I'm excited to start pitching movie ideas based on the books I merely intend to write.

Ayn Rand acolytes just can't catch a break from Hollywood. First, the Atlas Shrugged film adaptation they'd waited so long for turned out to be a great big dud, even by objective(ist) standards. Now the DVD has been officially recalled, because one of the marketing blurbs on the DVD case didn't play nice with the Randian belief system. At least they'll always have "The Incredibles."

Lars Von Trier's "Melancholia" finally washed up stateside this weekend, and the reviews range from shimmering to gleefully nasty. Suffice to say maybe you aren't into long, slowly paced movies about succumbing to depression and anxiety -- and hey, that's fair (though remember that some of us need these kinds of movies to survive). Or perhaps you are otherwise predisposed to hate Von Trier for reasons that you gleefully share with anyone who'll listen, in which case I'd like  a ten-second running head-start, please. I found the film spellbinding and was  impressed by the director's ability to draw the tension out so exquisitely -- almost unendurably. But as they say, it's definitely not for everyone.

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