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Ernest Hemingway’s Hottest Takes on Today’s News

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Happy birthday, Papa Hemingway! Many outlets are celebrating the famously concise and manly writer with tributes to his bon mots, but we thought we’d do something a little more appropriate for the 24/7 online news cycle — so we asked the beloved author to weigh in on a few of the most thinkpiece-worthy headlines of the moment. He obliged, being conveniently long dead, and therefore in the public domain.
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10 Sexily Packaged Netflix Streaming Movies That Are Not Even a Little Bit Sexy

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I see you, Internet. Every week, we do a nice little roundup of the new releases of note on the DVD/Blu-ray shelves and the streaming services, and it gets a fair amount of traffic — solid, nothing spectacular — and that’s that. But last week’s column was huge, far and away the column’s high point and one of our most clicked posts of the week, though the movies in it weren’t blockbusters. Oh, but it did the documentary Hot Girls Wanted, Netflix’s recent Sundance pickup about the horrifying exploitation of young women in the world of “amateur” porn. The disproportionate popularity of our post that mentions that title made me wonder if Netflix is seeing the same kind of traffic — if they maybe even bought the movie in part because it’s got such a click-friendly title. And all I can say, having seen Hot Girls Wanted, is that any late-night dirty-movie creepers who click “play” based on that title are in for a big, big disappointment. Which prompts the question: How many more Netflix streamers sound like they’re gonna be sexy, and really, really …Read More

TCM’s Film Noir “Into the Darkness” Course Study Group: Week 1

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In the course materials for “TCM Presents ‘Into the Darkness,’” we’re told to “think of this is as a ‘welcome week,’ your chance to settle into your new surroundings,” so it seems appropriate to approach this first “Study Group” post in the same spirit: as a hello, an introduction, and a first-day-of-school getting-one’s-bearings sort of situation. If you’re not sure what the hell I’m talking about, let’s backtrack: this summer, Turner Classic Movies is presenting a free, online summer school course on the history and themes of film noir. Your film editor is taking it, because why on earth wouldn’t I, and a couple of weeks back, I encouraged you to do the same, so we can meet and discuss every other week. (If you haven’t enrolled yet, it’s not too late.) So here we are; I’ve got on a new school outfit, and my Trapper Keeper has that first-day-of-school smell. How’re we doing so far?
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‘Made to Order’ Is This Summer’s Web Series to Watch

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With so many shows on hiatus until the fall, summer is prime time to check out some of those web series you’ve been bookmarking all year. Plus, they’re so short that you can watch a whole season without spending your entire weekend indoors on a couch! If you’re at a loss for where to start, one of the year’s most promising web series is Made to Order, from sketch duo Skinny Bitch Jesus Meeting. The quick series is an absurdist comedy about a ill-advised DIY food delivery business, and the more things go awry, the funnier the episodes get.
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Resting NiceFace Wields the Velociraptor Claw: Links You Need to See

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Teachers just can’t teach these days, it seems, without bringing a jammer into the classroom to get their students to stop texting and pay attention! Or, at least, that’s what this one Florida science teacher thought when he did just that (earning the ire of Verizon and possibly the FCC, and a five-day suspension). But things could have been even worse — as this professor points out — if a student had complained that the teacher was not “sensitive enough toward his feelings.” Apparently, professors are facing career-ending consequences for presenting difficult concepts and texts to students. But, while we’re avoiding mental harm in the classroom, anyone from the public at large is allowed to stroll through an airport carrying an AR-15, fully loaded with a 100-round drum in Georgia. With no consequences.
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Our Brand Is Rape Skepticism: On Slate and Emily Yoffe’s Weird ‘Hunting Ground’ Obsession

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Here’s a not-terribly-controversial opinion: I don’t have a problem with advocacy journalism. Sneering at the term presumes our news outlets are otherwise working from a perspective of unimpeachable objectivity, which anyone who’s worked in the news knows is outright bunk; calling that spade a spade dispenses with such outmoded ideals, and lets writers and researchers get down to the business of fighting the good fight against injustice. I’m kind of OK with that, and I’m willing to bet a lot of you are, as I’d imagine many of those who read commentary online at sites like ours and, oh, for example, Slate might be.

But yesterday, that site ran the latest slab of campus-rape skepticism from their in-house specialist, Emily Yoffe, who contends of the documentary The Hunting Ground, “because the stakes are so high, it is crucial, in telling stories of sexual assault, not to be blinded by advocacy…”
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