His days as prime minister of Italy are coming to an end, but Silvio Berlusconi isn't fading away quietly. On Tuesday, his fourth album of love songs will be released to the public. Titled "Il Vero Amore" (True Love), the album features 11 ballads, which are performed with the help of his long-time collaborator Mariano Apicella. But Berlusconi is hardly the only politician with musical aspirations. Here in the States, political figures from Bill Clinton and Ted Kennedy to Orrin Hatch and Condoleezza Rice have tried their hands at music.
Yes, it's finally here; the first part of the last installment of the "Twilight" movies. And it's got everything the others didn't: vampire marriage, sex, pregnancy, baby monsters. Kristen and Rafer talk about the latest (and possibly greatest?) movie that all the tweens are talking about. What do a couple of grown adults think? They kind of liked it! Find out why in this week's podcast.
In 1991, Anita Hill went from being an obscure law school professor to the subject of a national controversy. As Clarence Thomas was nominated to be a justice on the Supreme Court, Hill came forward with accusations that Thomas sexually harassed her when she worked with him at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Hill's testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee vaulted sexual harassment into the national dialogue, forever changing the way Americans talk about the topic.
In 1943, a group of Jews stood in a field in near Maidanek, a concentration camp in Poland also known as Lublin. Fearing their deaths, they burried their most prized possessions in the soil. Decades later, more than 60 years after two survivors returned to lead an excavation of the largest recovery of valuables from a death camp in history. A new documentary, called "Buried Prayers" tells the story of that event.
This week's big releases include the animated family film "Happy Feet 2," "The Descendants," starring George Clooney, and the eagerly awaited fourth Twilight movie "Breaking Dawn." Rafer Guzman, film critic for Newsday,and Kristen Meinzer, Takeaway culture producer, are co-hosts of the Movie Date podcast. They give their thoughts on the new movies this week.
"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness…" The words are timeless, they could apply to the world today. But of course, they were written over 150 years ago by Charles Dickens, in his masterpiece "A Tale of Two Cities." If he were still alive, Charles Dickens would be turning 200 in just a few months.
Perhaps this has happened to you before. You’ve said something that someone misunderstood — with or without a translator. Due to culture, language, or even gender, a statement like "I appreciate your frankness" comes across as "I enjoy your rudeness." The new play, "Chinglish" pays tribute to, and pokes fun at, these moments when something gets lost in translation. The play is in both Mandarin and English. And because the show has subtitles similar to those at the opera, the audience is fully in on all the jokes, even when the mono-lingual characters are not.
The National Book Awards finalists were announced last month and they included more surprises than have been seen in recent memory. Among the finalists were a graphic novel in the non-fiction category and a total of six books in a category that only allows five. On Wednesday night, the questions and controversy will come to an end, as the awards are handed out. Patrik Henry Bass, editor of books at Essence and Takeaway contributor, gives some insight into the National Book Awards.
As Kristen says in this latest podcast, "It's Oscar season." And if there's a movie out that hopes to bring a few of those statues in, it's "J. Edgar." But does the Leonardo Dicaprio-starring film deliver the goods? Not quite. Listen to this week's Movie Date podcast to find out why Kristen and Rafer are looking forward to some of the other assumed contenders and perhaps trying to forget this one.
In a small town in Texas, two young men knock on the door of a woman’s house as she's making cookies. They ask to use her phone. But as her back is turned, they kill her and then two other innocent bystanders all so they can enjoy a brief joyride in her car. In the end, one murderer is sentenced to life in prison. The other is given the death penalty.
This week's new movie releases include "Jack and Jill," starring Adam Sandler as both the title characters, "J. Edgar," with Leonardo DiCaprio as the original head of the FBI, and a smaller film by Lars Von Trier and starring Kirsten Dunst, called "Melancholia."
It's a beautiful, ancient language, one that very few people understand or speak. Navajo was instrumental to the success of the U.S. in World War II. Navajo volunteers worked with the U.S. military to create a secret code language that was used for communication in the South Pacific. Chester Nez, at 90 years old, is one of the only surviving member of the original Navajo recruits, and the author of a new memoir "Code Talker."
What does Brett Ratner's new movie "Tower Heist," have to do with Occupy Wall Street? You don't necessarily have to turn to Ben Stiller, Tea Leone, Casey Affleck, and Eddie Murphy; our intrepid movie-going podcasters have already watched the movie for you. But if you want to know whether the now-spurned Oscar producer's movie is any good, you'll have to listen! The two also discuss "Harold and Kumar: 3D Christmas," and some prescient Occupy Wall Street imagery.
"Sesame Street" has introduced the children of the world to a number of neighbors over the years, from Oscar the Grouch to Linda, the deaf librarian, to Maria and Louis, who spoke English and Spanish with equal proficiency. But what viewers may not realize is that "Sesame Street" also introduced them to an undocumented immigrant. His name was Carlo, on both the show, and in real life. Carlo the character was a teenager who worked in Mr. Hooper's store for five seasons.
Over the past few weeks, The Takeaway has been talking about innovation — what it is, and how we can spark more of it. We've talked about medicine, communication, education, and technology, among other topics. And we've talked with some of the biggest names and inventors out there. We wrap up our series with one of the most famous modern innovators in the world: James Dyson.
Mindy Kaling's character on "The Office," Kelly Kapoor, somehow walks the line between annoying and sympathetic. And Kaling, who also writes and produces for the hit comedy, surely meant it that way. The actress and writer has a new book out called "Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns). Kristen Meinzer interviewed Kaling about her TV personality, portraying a South Asian "ditz," and her new book.
This week's big new releases at the multiplex are "A Very Harold and Kumar Christmas in 3D," starring John Cho and Kal Pen; and "Tower Heist," starring Ben Stiller, Eddie Murphy, Alan Alda, Judd Hirsch, and Matthew Broderick. Rafer Guzman, film critic for Newsday,;and Kristen Meinzer, The Takeaway's culture producer, are co-hosts of The Takeaway’s Movie Date Podcast, and give their reviews of this week's new movies.
He plays one of the most recognizable characters in television history. He was mentored by the great Jim Henson. He has more daytime Emmys than most TV actors accrue in a lifetime. And yet, most days, he walks around the world, completely unrecognized by his fans. His name is Kevin Clash, and he is the subject of a new award-winning documentary called "Being Elmo," which is currently in limited release.
Have you ever wondered why we see time move forward, but never backward? Are you uncertain about how time and space relate to each other? Do you wonder if there are other universes out there that are similar to our own? If so, you’re not alone. Physicist and bestselling author Brian Greene has been delving into these questions his whole life.
All month we’ve been talking about innovation — speaking to innovative people and discussing innovative ideas. Now we hear from a woman who has designed a product for diabetics that not only solves a problem but is changing attitudes too. Jessica Floeh is the creator of Hanky Pancreas, a line of insulin pump accessories — scarves, neck pieces and other decorative items — that make the functional medical device fashionable.