Reports on the Death of the Romantic Comedy are Greatly Exaggerated

For years, romantic comedies (rom coms) have been few and far between, and those that were released were often small budget indie films that were a hit with critics but did little at the box office. Then a little movie called Crazy Rich Asians came along…is it the beginning of a rom com renaissance?

While they weren’t blockbusters, there have been several rom coms over the past few years that have pleased both audiences and critics. While you wait for Crazy Rich Asians to come out on DVD,check out these three rom coms with diverse casts and storylines.

The Big Sick
Pakistani stand-up comic Kumail Nanjiani and grad student Zoe Kazan fall in love, but their relationship is complicated by Kumail’s Muslim parents and Zoe’s sudden illness. More romantic than funny, the film earned accolades for its realism and warmth, and the cross-cultural themes that added new dimensions to the rom com formula.

Continue reading “Reports on the Death of the Romantic Comedy are Greatly Exaggerated”

Asian & Pacific Islander Heritage Month: In Our Own Image(s)

At the Capitol Hill Library, we wondered how to create an Asian & Pacific Islander (API) Heritage Month display that recognizes the many peoples who are categorized as “Asian” and “Pacific Islander” — each unique and with their own histories, languages, religions, cultural values, and experiences.  Is it possible to represent such broad and diverse communities without using stereotypical imagery (especially those which focus exclusively on East Asia)?

An answer dawned on us: since API people are already representing themselves, through their art and creative practice… why reach for the clipart of cherry blossoms and dragons, when we could highlight the imagery of API artists?

We reached out to a number of local artists with API heritage, and have featured some samples of their work – swing by the Capitol Hill library, and check out library items that are produced by API writers, illustrators, filmmakers, and musicians.  Our display offers a selection of poetry, picture books, nonfiction, DVDs, comics, and other media from our collection.  For those who can’t make it to our neck of the city, here are a few titles to place on hold:

Works by Pacific Islanders

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Continue reading “Asian & Pacific Islander Heritage Month: In Our Own Image(s)”

May the 4th Be With You!

“May the 4th be with you.” What started as pun warmly shared by fans has become a full-fledged Star Wars holiday: Star Wars Day, a special once-a-year celebration of the galaxy far, far away.

One of the earliest known records of “May the 4th” used in popular culture is in 1979, as described here by author Alan Arnold while he was chronicling the making of The Empire Strikes Back for Lucasfilm:

FRIDAY, MAY 4

“Margaret Thatcher has won the election and become Britain’s first woman prime minister. To celebrate their victory her party took a half page of advertising space in the London Evening News. This message, referring to the day of victory, was ‘May the Fourth Be With You, Maggie. Congratulations,’ further proof of the extent to which Star Wars has influenced us all.”

Once the Internet allowed Star Wars fans around the world to connect with one another, May the 4th soon became a grassroots tradition each year, with fans online and offline proclaiming it “Star Wars Day.”

Celebrate Star Wars day with a few reads from your local library! Continue reading “May the 4th Be With You!”

Friday the 13th: Stream the Screams

It’s Friday the 13th, which always makes me want to curl up with a good horror flick…or even a bad one. But I’m sure I’m not the only one, and DVD wait lists can sometimes crush those plans…however with our streaming services a horror flick is just a click away with your library card.

Want to get your horror fix without a wait list! Go to Kanopy and Hoopla to stream now!

My favorites from Kanopy:

What We Do In the Shadows – A great little horror comedy mockumentary from New Zealander’s Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi who wrote, directed, and starred in the film.

“Housemates Viago, Deacon, and Vladislav are three vampires who are trying to get by in modern society; from paying rent and doing housework to trying to get invited into nightclubs. They are just like anyone else – except they’re immortal and must feast on human blood. When their 8000 year-old roommate Petyr, turns 20-something human hipster Nick, into a vampire, the guys must guide him through his newfound eternal life.”

Continue reading “Friday the 13th: Stream the Screams”

Avengers Spoiler Alert: Andy Serkis is playing WHO?

Ms. Marvel, White Wolf, Mantis, Drax, Falcon, Peter Dinklage as Pip the Troll!… Just when you thought the burgeoning cast of characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe couldn’t get any more crowded, Hollywood Insider has gained access to leaked scripts for an as-yet-untitled Avengers movie due out in April 2020 that reveal a veritable avalanche of new characters, and a stunning new merger of beloved comics franchises. Continue reading “Avengers Spoiler Alert: Andy Serkis is playing WHO?”