| Oct 3, 2013
| 1:30 PM
Ten years ago this November singer-songwriter Elliott Smith, then 34, died in an Echo Park bungalow from two knife stabs to the chest. According to William Todd Schultz's "Torment Saint: The Life of Elliott Smith," a clear-eyed and devastating new...
| Nov 8, 2013
| 7:00 AM
Hilton Als' "White Girls" is as much about white girls as the author's previous effort "The Women" was about femininity — which is to say quite a lot and not at all. Like its predecessor, "White Girls" is an inquiry into otherness, and by extension,...
| Nov 21, 2013
| 9:34 AM
Thanksgiving is as late as it can be, and Hanukkah is earlier than usual this year, but the holiday shows always arrive right on schedule. From warmhearted theatrical classics to spicy newcomers, ballet to tap, traditional music to pop, we have enough...
| Nov 25, 2013
| 2:30 AM
"YOU WILL do foolish things, but do them with enthusiasm," said Collette.
It is difficult to equate the brilliant actress Jennifer Lawrence and her big movie hit "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" with the silly promotion "The Late Show with David...
| Oct 14, 2013
| 12:30 PM
Literary lists are made to provoke debate, and this list from Business Insider of the most famous book set in every state (and the District of Columbia) is a clever way of starting 51 parlor disputes at once.
The list has two major flaws (another...
| Dec 6, 2013
| 4:27 PM
Ordinarily, there are two reasons to see a one-person play about a historical figure. Audience members of "The Belle of Amherst" or "Tru" get to spend an evening with Emily Dickinson or Truman Capote, basking in their presence, while watching a master...
| Dec 11, 2013
Re "A double killing, a vengeful plan, a wave of fear," Dec. 8, and "A deadly threat ripples through the LAPD," Dec. 10
I was intrigued by the literary treatment of the first two installments of The Times' five-part series on the search this year for...
| Dec 17, 2013
| 11:59 AM
When Truman Capote chronicled his troubled childhood in rural Alabama in "A Christmas Memory," he didn't change any names to protect the innocent — except his own.
Capote dubbed himself "Buddy," a successful writer visiting his roots two decades...
| Dec 18, 2013
| 2:30 AM
"ALL terrorism is theater!" said departing -- to my sorrow -- New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly.
I wrote down this quote in the back of my daily calendar book so long ago that I had forgotten it. Then, last week I heard all sorts of people...
| Dec 18, 2013
| 10:27 AM
South Coast Repertory in Costa Mesa will present its annual production of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" until Dec. 26.
Jerry Path's adaptation of one man's redemption and new lease on life stars Hal Landon Jr. as Ebenezer Scrooge for the 34th...
| Dec 21, 2013
Consider this a purge.
A necessary year-end draining of the snippets, moments and bolts of cultural lightning that burned hot in my skull, sometimes left a mark, sometimes faded quickly, but always jolted me awake in 2013 and became, if only for one...