| Feb 3, 2014
| 12:33 PM
Given the depth and breadth of the late actor Philip Seymour Hoffman's body of work, it's difficult to even narrow down his top performances, let alone single out the best one. Would it be his Oscar-winning turn as "In Cold Blood" author Truman Capote...
| Feb 2, 2014
| 1:44 PM
The death of actor Philip Seymour Hoffman in an apparent drug overdose Sunday leaves behind a diverse and impressive body of work cut tragically short. From his pornographer turn in "Boogie Nights" to his Oscar-decorated turn as Truman Capote to his...
| Dec 24, 2013
| 12:52 PM
To get in the Christmas spirit, you might want to read a good piece of literature, something beyond “Twas the Night Before Christmas.” In the spirit of giving, we've found three stories from three great writers of the 20th century that...
| 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...
| 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 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 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 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 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...
| 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...
| 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...