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Updated: 46 min 19 sec ago

'Life Itself': An Unflinching Documentary Of Roger Ebert's Life And Death

Fri, 01/02/2015 - 8:03am

In late 2012, filmmaker Steve James and Roger Ebert began talking about filming a documentary based on Ebert's memoir. Ebert's wife, Chaz, agreed. They didn't know that he would die within months.

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A 40-Day Vegan Fast, Then At Last, A January Christmas Feast

Thu, 01/01/2015 - 4:43pm

The Ethiopian Orthodox Church observes Christmas on Jan. 7, and the 40 days prior are observed as a vegan fast. That means no dairy and no meat until the traditional dish of doro wat on Christmas Day.

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When It Comes To Furry Muses, Cats Are For Brevity And Dogs Are For Books

Thu, 01/01/2015 - 3:21pm

The Internet is the undisputed territory of cats, and dog books are more popular than their feline counterparts. Francesco Marciuliano plays to both animals' strengths in his best-selling collections.

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Pastry With Soul. It's That Simple

Thu, 01/01/2015 - 2:49am

New York pastry chef Brooks Headley calls his cookbook Fancy Desserts. But his Italian grandmother is his real inspiration, he says, and she was all about homestyle: simple and fresh.

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A Cure For The Common Hangover, Found On The Stove

Wed, 12/31/2014 - 4:19pm

Chef Anthony Lamas says posole, a Mexican hominy stew, is great if you're cold, hung over or just had a long night. "It's a cure in a bowl" that's infinitely customizable, he says.

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Luck Be A Lentil Tonight! What The World Eats To Welcome The New Year

Wed, 12/31/2014 - 4:10pm

From Italy to Japan to the Philippines, people will hope for happiness, health and wealth as they sit down to a New Year's meal. Sometimes that last wish is expressed as actual money in the food.

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Book Review: 'Waking Up: A Guide To Spirituality Without Religion'

Wed, 12/31/2014 - 3:26pm

Astrophysicist Adam Frank reviews Sam Harris' Book, Waking Up: A Guide to Spirituality without Religion.

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Favorite Films Of 2014: Why Stop At 10?

Wed, 12/31/2014 - 2:24pm

Box office figures were gloomy in 2014, but movie critic Bob Mondello still found a lot to cheer about among the year's quirky offerings — and as usual, his annual 10 best list runneth over.

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Food Psychology: How To Trick Your Palate Into A Tastier Meal

Wed, 12/31/2014 - 12:45pm

Ingredients and preparation matter in making a delicious dinner. But so do a lot of other external factors, from your mood to room lighting. Here, a guide to enhancing the pleasures of the plate.

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In 'Death By Pastrami,' Charming Stories Of New York's Garment District

Wed, 12/31/2014 - 12:25pm

Leonard S. Bernstein — the writer, not the composer — once owned and managed a garment factory. In his first work of fiction the octogenarian crafts quaint parables about the comic futility of life.

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'A Most Violent Year,' But A Film With Restraint

Wed, 12/31/2014 - 11:03am

J.C. Chandor makes provocative use of the imagery of violence to explore the life of a bad man who wants to seem good.

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Grasping For Gravitas In 'A Most Violent Year'

Wed, 12/31/2014 - 11:03am

J.C. Chandor's A Most Violent Year wants to be an elegant statement on the tough truth about making it in America. Instead, it tries to import seriousness it can't back up with substance.

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'The Apprentice' Is Dead, Please Stop 'The Celebrity Apprentice'

Wed, 12/31/2014 - 9:43am

Believe it or not, before The Celebrity Apprentice was a really terrible and boring show, The Apprentice was kind of a dishy, fun show. No, it was.

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In 'The Rosie Effect,' An Unusual Romantic Hero Perseveres

Wed, 12/31/2014 - 7:33am

Graeme Simsion's follow-up to 2013's The Rosie Project finds his unusual protagonist confronting parenthood.

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Banish 2014's Woes With Our Stand-Up Comedy Picks

Wed, 12/31/2014 - 2:23am

NPR's Elizabeth Blair polled comedy-industry insiders to find out their favorite jokes of 2014. The results range from supermarket-checkout observations to a historically hysterical take on Oprah.

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Actress Luise Rainer Made Hollywood History — Then Walked Away

Tue, 12/30/2014 - 3:20pm

Luise Rainer was the first person to win back-to-back Academy Awards (in 1936 for The Great Ziegfield and 1937 for The Good Earth). Ranier died Monday at her home in London. She was 104 years old.

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In 'The Honorable Woman,' There's No One You Can Trust

Tue, 12/30/2014 - 3:20pm

Maggie Gyllenhaal says she had reservations about taking on the role of Nessa Stein in the Sundance series. The conflict in the Middle East is "really complicated and it goes back so far," she says.

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Louis C.K. On His 'Louie' Hiatus: 'I Wanted The Show To Feel New Again'

Tue, 12/30/2014 - 12:38pm

The comic tells Fresh Air that after Season 3, he "aggressively forgot the show existed for a few months." Then he got back to work — for Louie's fourth season. Originally broadcast May 19.

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In 'Huckleberry Finn,' A History In Echoes

Tue, 12/30/2014 - 9:50am

Andrew Levy's searching book adds to, and comments on, the considerable scholarship surrounding an widely read and widely challenged American classic.

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Talk, Sing, Read, Write, Play: How Libraries Reach Kids Before They Can Read

Tue, 12/30/2014 - 2:59am

This isn't your typical story time; public libraries are designing new programs to help parents and caregivers interact with toddlers in ways that will encourage future reading.

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