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Updated: 1 hour 28 min ago

'This Is Where I Leave You' Makes A Family Story Too Ordinary

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 7:52am

The new comedy-drama brings four siblings — and one strong cast — together to mourn, but it rarely manages to rise above the ordinary, with one exception.

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Pop Culture Happy Hour: A Fall Films Preview And Betting On New Television

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 7:51am

On this week's show, we look back on the Toronto International Film Festival, then ahead to the fall season of new television.

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Cartoonist Alison Bechdel Awarded MacArthur Fellowship

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 4:02am

She is one of the first cartoonists to be recognized. Besides her graphic novels and memoirs, Bechdel developed a simple three-question test for how women are represented in films.

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Look, Mom, I Finally Made It To Broadway!

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 4:52pm

NPR's Michel Martin will sit down with a panel of award-winning playwrights to ask about diversity in theater. Follow here or join us on Twitter on Friday at 7 p.m. ET, using #NPRMichel.

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New Show 'Madam Secretary' Suffers In Comparison With 'The Good Wife'

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 2:42pm

The CBS dramas about women juggling family lives and high-intensity jobs showcase excellent acting. But while The Good Wife is one of the best shows on TV, Madam Secretary's writing is disappointing.

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The Long, Scary Journey From A 'Terrorist's Son' To A Peace Activist

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 2:39pm

Zak Ebrahim's father was convicted as a conspirator of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. For most of his life, Ebrahim lied to people about who his father was. His new memoir tells his story.

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Passionate Proclamations With Gilbert Gottfried

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 9:58am

The legendary stand-up discusses "crossing the line" in comedy. Then, in his signature voice, he whispers sweet nothings into your ear in a game about famous romances throughout history.

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Rap It Up

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 8:33am

We're wrapping up the show with a game featuring the letters R-A-P. All answers contain those letters in consecutive order. For example, "a long-haired lady in fairy tales" is "Rapunzel."

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Cultured Film Quotes

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 8:33am

We love low-brow film, but every once in a while, we crave high culture. In this game, we've classed up a few famous movie quotes with the names of important historical figures: "I'll be Bach."

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Everything But The 'Y'

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 8:33am

There are words...and then there are super words! Supervocalics are words that include each of the vowels A, E, I, O and U, like "tambourine." All of the answers in this game share this special power.

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The Time Machine

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 8:33am

Travel back to 1914. All questions must be answered from the vantage point of that year, such as, how many stars are on the US Flag? But be quick: WWI is about to start and the Wi-Fi here is terrible.

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The Big Score

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 8:33am

We wish we were as enthusiastic about anything as announcer Andres Cantor is about a soccer ball going into a net. Play a game about words or names that contain the sound "go," like "GOOOOO-pher!"

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Go Johnny, Go!

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 8:30am

Go, Johnny Coulton, go! Our one-man house band plays the Chuck Berry classic "Johnny B. Goode" with the lyrics rewritten to be about other famous guys named John. Can you sing your way to victory?

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Book News: Fiction Longlist Is Out For The National Book Awards

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 6:29am

Also: A Jane Austen Festival sets a new record; Terrance Hayes on winning a MacArthur.

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Calvino's Cosmicomic Collection Treads The Final Frontier — America

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 6:03am

Italo Calvino's delightful "cosmicomic" stories have long been scattered — split into separate books and translated in pieces. Now, a collection new to the U.S. is finally bringing them together.

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Jacqueline Woodson On Being A 'Brown Girl' Who Dreams

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 4:29am

In her new memoir for young adults, Woodson uses free verse to tell the story of growing up in the 1960s and 1970s. Her work for young readers often touches on themes of race and identity.

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Jacqueline Woodson On Being A 'Brown Girl' Who Dared To Dream

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 4:29am

In her new memoir for young adults, Woodson uses free verse to tell the story of growing up in the 1960s and 1970s. Her work for young readers often touches on themes of race and identity.

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Martin Amis' 'Zone Of Interest' Is An Electrically Powerful Holocaust Novel

Wed, 09/17/2014 - 5:03pm

Martin Amis' latest novel, which takes place in Auschwitz, has already stirred up controversy in Europe according to the New York Times. But reviewer Alan Cheuse calls it the triumph of Amis' career.

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MacArthur Fellow Terrance Hayes: Poems Are Music, Language Our Instrument

Wed, 09/17/2014 - 3:37pm

Hayes, a professor of writing at the University of Pittsburgh, was recognized for "reflecting on race, gender, and family in works that seamlessly encompass both the historical and the personal."

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Want To Learn About The Scientific Method? Go Bake Some Cookies

Wed, 09/17/2014 - 2:09pm

How one woman's quest to bring you the scientific method has resulted in a blog project chock-full of chocolate chip cookie experiments. Wear your oven mitt and bring a glass of milk.

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