Luscious Lyon (Terrence Howard) is the ailing CEO of Empire Entertainment, a company he built into a music industry titan while his wife Cookie (Taraji P. Henson) was doing 17 years behind bars for a crime that he committed. Like a modern-day King Lear, he’s ready to surrender the throne to one of his heirs. Lear had three daughters, Luscious has three sons, and that similarity is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of unabashed allusions to the works of William Shakespeare made in the opening episode of “Empire.”
“The social challenges of our time are enormous. About one in seven U.S. residents live in poverty, and the disparity between the haves and have-nots is wider than at any point since the Great Depression…
The 10 Best, No, the 100 Best Films of 2014
2014 has produced a cornucopia of great films, at least a dozen of which has an excellent shot at taking home the Academy Award for Best Picture, including Boyhood, Birdman, The Imitation Game and Whiplash, to name a few. However, all the stars seemed to be aligned for my personal favorite, Selma, the searing civil rights saga, set in March of 1965, about the historic march led by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Ava DuVernay is a writer, producer, director and distributor of independent film. Winner of the Best Director Award at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, Ava was honored with the 2013 John Cassavetes Independent Spirit Award and the Tribeca Film Institute 2013 Affinity Award for her second feature film, “Middle of Nowhere.”
In Birdman, Michael Keaton played a fading star trying to revive a career that had been in decline since he’d become typecast after playing a superhero in a series of blockbusters on the big screen. That plotline wasn’t all that far off from the arc of Keaton’s real-life fate following an outing as Batman back in 1989.
BOOK REVIEW: “Justice While Black: Helping African-American Families Navigate and Survive the Criminal Justice System”
[caption id="attachment_22582" align="alignleft"]Nick Chiles: photo credit it: Photo © Denene Millner[/caption]“The August 9th fatal shooting of teenager Michael Brown by police in Ferguson, Missouri has focused global attention on the precarious safety of young African-American men… Brown is only the most recent addition to the tragic list of shootings of young, African-American men that have ignited media attention in recent years.
Karin Slaughter is the New York Times and #1 internationally best-selling author of 14 thrillers, including “Unseen,” “Criminal,” “Fallen,” “Broken,” “Undone,” “Fractured,” “Beyond Reach,” “Triptych,” “Faithless,” and the e-original short stories “Snatched” and “Busted.” Here, the Georgia native discusses her latest opus, “Cop Town,” a riveting murder mystery set in Atlanta in 1974.
[caption id="attachment_22501" align="alignleft"]barnesandnoble.com[/caption]Tavis Smiley is the host and managing editor of Tavis Smiley on PBS, and The Tavis Smiley Show from Public Radio International. He is also the author of 16 best-selling books. Here, he talks about his latest opus, “Death of a King.”