Japan’s Floating World, SF

Two new excellent exhibitions about 17th- to 19th-century Japanese art and culture grace San Francisco’s well-respected Asian Art Museum, the largest museum in the United States devoted exclusively to the arts of Asia. From 1615–1868, in Edo (now Tokyo), a city whose population reached one million by the beginning  ...

Four Oscar Myths

It's Oscar season, which means it's time for entertainment bloggers and reporters to regurgitate timeworn tales of Sacheen Littlefeather accepting Marlon Brando's Best Actor Oscar for "The Godfather," that streaker running past David Niven, and the following four tired Oscar myths which your pals at Culture Vulture would officially like  ...

Airline Highway

“Tourists don’t want a coyote ugly … strip joint, they don’t want a parade INSIDE the Convention Center sponsored by Coke. They want some dirty shit to happen, authentic top shelf shit. Tucked away under the counter, ya gotta ask for it – sit it in the back room with  ...

Paula Farmer’s Oscar Picks 2014

Although 2014 wasn’t a stand-out year for movies, especially in light of recent past years, what was good, was very good. More than likely the categories of Best Movie and Best Director will split. For that I am torn. Will Richard Linklater take home Best Director, and "Birdman" Best Movie  ...

The Night Alive, LA

Alas, dear reader, once again I am stuck in a tale of good-news/bad-news. Being a glass-half-full kind of a gal, I figure why not try to start with the good? "The Night Alive" is the much-awaited winner of the New York Drama Critics Circle best play award by Conor McPherson.  ...

Music Hall

A bare stage. There’s only a curtain, a stool, a pair of high-heeled shoes, and a trunk. But here three actors create a magical environment, an environment of beauty and bleakness about their fading careers as cabaret performers: The Artiste (gracefully played by Jeffrey Binder) and two Boys, her accompanists  ...

The Agony And The Ecstasy

You know a film is not that good when the best contemporaneous review one can find of it was from the notoriously bad New York Times film critic Bosley Crowther. Who was Bosley Crowther, you ask? Well, he was the Roger Ebert of his day. That is, he was the  ...

“Enticing Beauty” Diablo Ballet

How many boutique, suburban-based companies can celebrate a 22nd season with a smartly staged program featuring works by such choreographers as George Balanchine, Christopher Wheeldon, Sean Kelly, Sonya Delwaide, and Robert Dekkers? You can count them on the fingers of one hand. Diablo Ballet has weathered ups and downs that  ...