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Updated: 48 min 57 sec ago

Cheever Biographer Turns His Eye On His Own Troubled Family

Sat, 03/01/2014 - 7:00am

Blake Bailey has written about John Cheever and Richard Yates — now, he's describing real-life suburban alcoholic despair in a memoir of his troubled brother, The Splendid Things We Planned.

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If Anyone Can Make Golf Exciting, It'd Be Dan Jenkins

Sat, 03/01/2014 - 7:00am

The legendary sportswriter's new memoir, His Ownself, takes readers from his idyllic childhood in Fort Worth to his years as a globetrotting golf fan and founder of Sports Illustrated.

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Elaine Stritch, Volatile And Vulnerable In 'Shoot Me'

Sat, 03/01/2014 - 7:00am

The 89-year-old, Tony Award-winning Broadway star is the subject of a new documentary, Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me. She spoke with NPR's Scott Simon about seeing herself on screen.

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What The Oscars Mean, And What They Don't

Fri, 02/28/2014 - 3:00pm

The Oscars are coming up this weekend, but do they matter anymore? Bob Mondello talks about why the Oscars frustrate him, and we search — maybe in vain — for meaning.

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This Week's Must Read: 'Pedro Paramo'

Fri, 02/28/2014 - 3:00pm

Inspired by the arrest of drug cartel leader Joaquin Guzman, author Zachary Lazar explores themes of violence and power using Pedro Paramo, by Mexican novelist Juan Rulfo.

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'Kids For Cash,' Or Perhaps Not — But A Broken System For Sure

Fri, 02/28/2014 - 1:11pm

The 2008 scandal was about more than whether a judge took a bribe from a private detention facility. A new documentary explores a story about the perils of zero tolerance in the juvenile system.

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Should The NFL Police The N-Word?

Fri, 02/28/2014 - 11:03am

The National Football League is considering a 15-yard penalty for players using the N-word on the field. The Barbershop guys weigh in on that and other news of week.

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Will President's Initiative Be A 'Game-Changer' For Young Men Of Color?

Fri, 02/28/2014 - 11:00am

"My Brother's Keeper" is a new White House initiative designed to help young men of color succeed. Law professor Paul Butler and youth advocate Malik Washington discuss the president's new plan.

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Liam Neeson's Action Chops Take Flight In 'Non-Stop'

Fri, 02/28/2014 - 10:00am

Neeson became a bankable action hero in 2008 after the thriller Taken. Now almost 62, he's still getting out of tight corners with his fists. His new film unfolds on a transatlantic flight.

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Bob And Linda Read Internet Movie Reviews, Part Nine: '12 Years A Slave'

Fri, 02/28/2014 - 8:00am

We wrap up our look at what the internet at large had to say about this year's Best Picture nominees with the beautiful but devastating 12 Years A Slave.

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Pop Culture Happy Hour: The Oscars Omnibus Of 2014

Fri, 02/28/2014 - 7:24am

On this week's show, we invite Bob Mondello to join the table for a discussion of all nine Best Picture nominees and some other stuff, too. And we talk about what's making us happy this week.

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Book News: Author Criticizes S.C. School Funding Cuts Over Gay-Themed Books

Fri, 02/28/2014 - 7:07am

Also: More than 120 academic papers turn out to be fakes; the Israeli Embassy donates 300 books on Anne Frank to Tokyo public; Colson Whitehead talks to The New York Times about writing spaces.

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The Count Of Many Mistresses: Alexandre Dumas' Lively Life

Fri, 02/28/2014 - 6:00am

Alexandre Dumas' life was almost as exciting as his work, some of which was written to support his many mistresses. Comics legend Kyle Baker celebrates Dumas for our Black History Month project.

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Keen Eyes, Uncanny Instincts Keep Films In Sharp Focus

Fri, 02/28/2014 - 2:20am

Believe it or not, the person responsible for keeping each and every shot of a movie in focus never looks through a camera lens. NPR's Susan Stamberg explains the role of the focus puller.

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Oscar Glow, Today's Tech Help Short Films Find Their Fandom

Fri, 02/28/2014 - 2:18am

Oscar-nominated short films, once all but impossible to see except at art-house theaters, are surging in popularity via online streaming and on-demand services.

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Mouse, Meet Bear, And Let's All Make Friends

Thu, 02/27/2014 - 6:39pm

Warmhearted and dazzling, Ernest & Celestine has a lot to say about society's rules — and imagining life on the other side of its borders. (Recommended)

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'Non-Stop': Liam Neeson, Armed And Dangerous Again

Thu, 02/27/2014 - 4:22pm

In an enjoyably absurd airborne whodunit, the actor plays a Federal Air Marshal who has to find the terrorist picking off passengers on a tranatlantic flight.

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In 'Stalingrad,' Where The Fog Of War Is Plenty Thick

Thu, 02/27/2014 - 4:00pm

A new 3-D take on a formative Russian war story has its impressive moments, but ultimately feels contrived and confusing.

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A Legacy Of War, Hitting Home Decades Later In Norway

Thu, 02/27/2014 - 4:00pm

The Berlin wall has fallen, and a middle-aged Norwegian woman finds her idyllic life coming unmoored as secrets rooted in World War II come to light.

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New Academy President Pushes For More Diverse Voting Members

Thu, 02/27/2014 - 3:00pm

Last summer, the organization behind the Oscars elected its first African American president: film marketing executive Cheryl Boone Isaacs. She's been working to diversify a monochrome membership.

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